Hey, they were only rentals

As they do battle for the Nov. 2 election, President Bush and Democratic rival John Kerry regale campaign crowds with examples of how they differ - especially in their approaches to the economy, jobs, and trade. But, as enterprising journalists discovered, it turns out that they're identical in at least one respect: Both chose imported buses for their recent swings through Ohio. Bush's "Yes, America Can" and Kerry's "Real Deal Express" were built in Canada.

I have my reasons

It couldn't have been because of Mother's Day, which was observed in Britain two months ago, but a woman left clerks in a London variety store nonplused earlier this week when she walked in, bought its entire stock of chocolate bars - 10,656 - asked that they be loaded into her limousine, and drove off without explanation. The store usually doesn't sell that many in a month.

Made dinner reservations yet for mother's day?

On Sunday, millions of women will be treated like royalty with greeting cards, flowers, chocolates - maybe even breakfast in bed. The occasion: Mother's Day, an observance celebrated on the second Sunday in May since 1914. That was the year Congress heeded a letter- writing campaign spearheaded by Anna Jarvis of Philadelphia, who, six years before, began her lobbying effort by organizing a church service to honor her deceased mother. Today, the Census Bureau estimates that 82.5 million mothers live in the US. The states with the highest and lowest percentages of women, between 15 and 44, who are mothers:

Mississippi 68.2%
Arkansas 65.9
Kentucky 65.0
West Virginia 64.1
Wyoming 63.4
Massachusetts 50.4
Minnesota 51.0
Washington 51.3
South Dakota 51.7
Iowa 52.4

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