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HEY, IT'S FUN OUT HERE

"She seemed to especially like the Orange Slice," Barbara Baker told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Who did? Well, the president of the city zoo was talking about a nameless 150-pound gorilla that escaped temporarily from confinement, crossed a moat, and had a field day consuming the soft drinks and cherry tarts at a concession stand. She wasn't considered a danger to the public, but afterward zookeepers were concerned for the animal herself because of the radical departure from her diet of fruit and monkey chow.

AW, THAT TOOK HOURS TO DO

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In San Francisco, some engineering students, eager to put the laws of physics on display, dangled the shell of a VW Beetle over the side of the Golden Gate Bridge. "It's in good fun," said one student. Wrong, countered city officials, forseeing up to $10,000 in fines in the pranksters' future. As for the car, the Coast Guard got it down by cutting the cable it was hanging from, sending it plunging into the bay.

Most-admired US company list led once again by ... GE

When Cisco Systems, the world's leading maker of computer networking equipment, posted disappointing earnings Tuesday, its share price immediately plunged 14 percent - to its lowest level in a year and a half. Still, the high-tech bellwether climbed two places to No. 2 behind perennial champ General Electric in Fortune magazine's 2001 list of the most admired US companies. Conversely, Bridgestone/Firestone's troubles plunged it into the bottom 10. Fortune's list from its Feb. 19 issue and each company's rank in last year's top 10, if applicable:

1. General Electric (1)

2. Cisco Systems (4)

3. Wal-Mart Stores (5)

4. Southwest Airlines (6)

5. Microsoft (2)

6. Home Depot (9)

7. Berkshire Hathaway (7)

8. Charles Schwab

9. Intel (8)

10. Dell Computer (3)

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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