Once Over Lightly
Not Just Any Tom, Dick, or Olaf
After a court fight, a Swedish couple agreed to give their five-year-old boy a first name. Their choice: Brfxxccxxmnpcccclllmmnprxvclmnckssqlbb11116. But the name, which they pronounce "Albin," was rejected by a district court, despite the parents' plea that it was "an artistic creation." The parents plan to appeal.
Will the Real Mr. Li and Ms. Liu Stand Up
China has a name problem of its own: It does not have enough names to go around for its 1.2 billion people. Premier Li Peng has at least 3,000 namesakes across the country, and the capital of Beijing alone has 13,000 women called Liu Shuzhen. Supply is tightest among surnames - 87 percent of the people share just 100 common names, including Zhang, Li, Wang, Liu, and Chen.
The Case of the Yellow Spider
On paper, it was the perfect caper. Two Pensacola, Fla., teens took a large yellow flame knee spider from a pet store and then planned to give it a plane ride to Venezuela where it could romp in the jungles of its youth. But a video camera in the store caught the environmentalists in the act, and police later intercepted the spider in Atlanta. Now the boys could face theft charges. One boy's father said his son has done this sort of thing before: He recently emptied his bank account to "liberate" a python.
Clintons to Korea: Honeymoon Is Over
President and Hillary Clinton have upset the plans of 90 South Korean honeymooning couples. The newlyweds had to give up rooms at the Shilla Hotel on Korea's Cheju Island to make room for a presidential summit.
Ironically, the Clintons did not spend the night in the hotel, since their nine-hour stopover was during the day. The US Embassy in Seoul is expected to issue an apology to each of the couples.