Etc...

20 pushups? Yes, sergeant!

"It's an honor to walk in my father's footsteps," the young man said, announcing his plans to report for Army training at Fort Bragg, N.C., next month. And Tiger Woods will do so right after he competes in the Masters Tournament, April 8-11. No, he isn't abandoning professional golf for a career as a soldier. But his father was a Green Beret in the Vietnam war, and the younger Woods wanted to experience some of what he'd been through in preparing for life in the Special Forces - and at the same base, too. So Earl Woods inquired whether that could be arranged. It was, and his son will train for four days at the home of the famous 82nd Airborne Division - you know, the people who arrive on the battlefield by jumping from planes. And after that? Then he's scheduled to conduct a golf clinic for 75 children of soldiers stationed at Fort Bragg.

Attention, shoppers, king of sales is still Wal-Mart

Bargain-hunting consumers made 2003 another big year for Wal-Mart Inc. and its 4,800 stores. Using sales figures taken from last year's financial statements, the world's No. 1 retailer remained atop Fortune magazine's list of the 500 largest US companies. Wal-Mart has the smallest profit margin in the retailing industry, so it hardly compares to oil industry giant Exxon Mobil when it comes to earnings ($21.5 billion vs. $9 billion). When it comes to gross revenues, though, checkout counters at Wal-Mart - with its discount, grocery, and warehouse outlets - rang up an unsurpassed $259 billion in sales. The 10 largest US companies, with their 2003 sales figures (in millions), as compiled by Fortune:

1. Wal-Mart $259
2. Exxon Mobil 213
3. General Motors 196
4. Ford Motor Co. 164
5. General Electric 134
6. ChevronTexaco 113
7. ConocoPhillips 99
8. Citigroup Inc. 95
9. IBM 89
10. American International Group Inc. 81

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