No dumb-blonde jokes, please, but a new study by a labor group in Iceland has found that persons whose hair is that color (naturally or not) are paid less than those whose hair isn't. And it doesn't seem to matter which other color, either: brown, black, red, or gray. Based on 3,400 responses, the Commercial Workers Union also found that the pay tended to be most generous for tall males who don't smile much. Said one analyst: "Be satisfied with the mousy color [of your hair] ... buy shoes with higher heels, and, above all, start frowning on the job."


In Querencia do Norte, Brazil, police are daring a band of irate protesters to strike again. If they do - and if they're caught - the charge will be destruction of public property. So, did they smash streetlights or something? No. They transplanted banana trees, sugar cane, and other crops into deep potholes in a 12-mile stretch of road, forcing traffic to weave in and out. The cops cleared the highway again but know of no plans to patch it.

California sets the curve for child safety in moving cars

Forty-two states, plus the District of Columbia, got either a D or F in an evaluation by the National Safe Kids Campaign of child-safety restraints in vehicles. The Washington-based group found that many states allow children to ride unrestrained in the back seat; others require nothing more than a seat belt designed for an adult. California scored the only A for having enacted detailed statutes that specify the need for age- and size-appropriate restraints. The top-scoring states with the grade for each on a 100-point basis:


California 94.0


Florida 80.0


Nebraska 77.0

Washington 76.6

Alaska 76.0

Connecticut 76.0

Kentucky 73.0

Massachusetts 72.0

Associated Press

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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