MAIL BY BOAT
carriers take leap of faith on this route
The main worry for some young mail carriers in southern Wisconsin is neither dogs nor extreme weather. It's plunging into a lake. A never-stopping boat delivers mail to dozens of mansions on Lake Geneva during the summer. Teenage carriers are hired to jump off the boat, put the mail in mailboxes on the dock, then scurry back on board. The U.S. Postal Service says it's the only delivery like it in the nation and has been running since 1916. The boat carries about 150 people who watch and sometimes cheer when teens safely return to the boat. Though the post office lost $3.8 billion last year, the route appears layoff-proof, with a $1 a year contract.
the holy Fee
The Pope is going to make UK pay
Pilgrims will have to pay as much as $39 to attend one of the two public events in England to be led by Pope Benedict XVI during his visit this fall. The charges — believed to be a first for a papal event — are for a prayer vigil in London's Hyde Park on Sept. 18 and the beatification of Cardinal John Henry Newman in Birmingham on Sept. 19.
the santa claus?
Sewers earmarked for the North Pole
Tucked away in the fiscal 2011 appropriations bill for the Interior Department and the Environmental Protection Agency is a $1 million earmark, inserted by Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, to be given to the "City of North Pole for industrial force sewer main." Sewers-for-Santa apparently comes after years of complaints about plumbing problems by Mr. and Mrs. Claus and the Elves' Union Local 63 to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Actually, North Pole, Alaska, is a town (population 2,200) about 1,700 miles south of the real North Pole. Developers, hoping to lure toy manufacturers, gave the town its name. Toymakers never showed, but the Fairbanks suburb boasts the famous Santa Claus gift shop and the world's largest fiberglass statue of Santa.
Ghostly 'border' hues offend
New York-based MAC cosmetics company and the Rodarte design firm of Los Angeles have apologized for their collection of lipstick, blushes and other cosmetics that features some pallid, ghostly hues with names like "Juarez," "Bordertown," "Ghost Town" and "Factory." More than 100 women were abused and murdered and their bodies dumped in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, between 1993 and 2003. Many were factory workers. MAC said it will donate $100,000 to help the women of Ciudad Juarez.
Compiled from Times wire services and other sources.