Etc...

Oh, this is so embarrassing

It was late and quite dark when weary research scientist Mark Norley of Axbridge, England, let himself into the house, climbed the stairs, and tumbled into bed last weekend. He was sleeping soundly, too, until Giles Mottram arrived home a bit later, wanting nothing more than a good night's rest ... and found Norley's head on his pillow. Once everything was sorted out, it developed that the dwelling seemed so familiar to Norley because he'd lived there seven years before. The police then escorted him to his mother's residence to finish his nap. Was alcohol involved? Oh, yeah.

Well, it seemed a good idea

Then there's the fellow in Hamburg, Germany, who thought he'd do his brother a favor - and himself a good turn - by stepping in to serve a jail term that wasn't his. So on the day his sibling was to show up for a 10-month sentence on a vice charge, our guy arrived in his place, planning to use the time to battle a fondness for adult beverages. Ultimately, both were found out, and now a court has ordered the substitute inmate to pay $2,100 for his room and board.

Top target of consumer ire in 2002? Cellphone services

With cellphones becoming a fixture in many US households, it should come as no surprise that complaints about the companies that provide them are up. According to BusinessWeek online, these services were the No. 1 source of consumer complaints last year in a list compiled by the Council of Better Business Bureaus, up from 16th in 2001. The bureau's "dirty dozen" - businesses that generated the most complaints in 2002:

1. Cellphone services
2. Franchise auto dealers
3. Credit-card offers
4. Internet services
5. Computer dealers/stores
6. Telephone companies
7. Mail-order and catalog firms
8. Home-furnishing stores
9. Credit-collection agencies
10. Cable/satellite-TV providers
11. Moving and storage firms
12. Auto repair shops

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