News In Brief


Amid the controversy over the US presidential election, the World Almanac and Book of Facts went to press last week. So what, you ask? Only that, for the first time in its history, the venerable reference work was unable to profile the winner. The almanac first appeared in 1868, the year Ulysses S. Grant defeated Horatio Seymour. Publication was suspended in 1876, as the race between Rutherford B. Hayes and Samuel Tilden dragged on until March of the following year. The book returned in 1886, and every other presidential race since then has been decided by press time. Copies of the 2001 edition should appear in stores any day now. "Perhaps," an almanac official said, "this will be a collector's edition."


In London, where the Metropolitan Police force is among several across Britain that are understaffed, some old barriers to recruitment have had to be dropped. Such as? Well, a criminal record. But only if the offenses were petty.

More honors for Australia: top spots in new travel poll

It has been a banner year for Australia. First, Sydney won rave reviews as host of the Olympics, and now Conde Nast Traveler magazine has named it the best destination among foreign cities for the sixth consecutive year. In fact, Australia overall did well in the US-based magazine's annual survey of readers, which this year totaled about 26,000 people. In the temperate island category, Tasmania came out on top; and among tropical islands, Fraser Island placed third. Fraser, which is part of the state of Queensland, received the top score in its category for activities and was on a par with the Hawaiian islands for scenery. The survey also rated US cities; San Francisco earned the No. 1 spot. The top foreign cities in the magazine's ranking, which appears in this month's issue:

1. Sydney, Australia

2. Florence, Italy

3. Rome

4. Paris

5. Venice, Italy

- Associated Press, Agence France-Presse

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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