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Visiting Scotland for the G8 summit, President George W. Bush fell off his bicycle after running into a policeman. Bush was hurt, but not badly. The policeman hurt his ankle. “I should act my age,” said Bush.APIOL.co.zaTerrorists set off bombs on three trains and a bus in London, killing fifty-two people, despite the fact that in 2003 Dick Cheney said that “our military is confronting the terrorists, along with our allies, in Iraq and Afghanistan so that innocent civilians will not have to confront terrorist violence in Washington or London or anywhere else in the world.”The ScotsmanThe White HousePresident Bush condemned attacks on innocent folks by those with evil in their hearts. “The war on terror,” he eulogized, “goes on.”The White HouseSeveral London hotels increased their rates in response to the bombings.BBC NewsBritish MP George Galloway said that “London has reaped the involvement of Mr. Blair’s involvement in Iraq.”Democracy Now!In Iraq, a suicide bombing killed twenty-one people, eight members of the same Shiite family were shot and killed, and suicide car bombs killed seven people near the Syrian border. Washington PostIraqi police detained twelve suspected militants inside a metal box under the Iraqi sun; nine died from the heat, and one of the survivors complained that he had been given electric shocks by the police.BBC NewsSilvio Berlusconi announced that Italy would start pulling its troops out of Iraq in September,The Guardianand in Afghanistan, the Taliban beheaded ten Afghan soldiers and killed a Navy SEAL.The GuardianThe commander of Guantánamo Bay was fired,Washington Postand a nine-year-old boy fell into a hot-spring pool at Yellowstone National Park and was burned on over 40 percent of his body.Jackson Hole Zone
A South Carolina courthouse was vandalized by a goat,TheKansasCityChannel.comand New York Times journalist Judith Miller was sent to jail in Virginia for refusing to appear before a grand jury in connection to the Valerie Plame case. At the jail, where Zacarias Moussaoui is also an inmate, she had to sleep on the floor. Karl Rove’s lawyer acknowledged that Rove spoke about Valerie Plame to Time Magazine reporter Matt Cooper; Rove released Cooper from his promise of confidentiality, allowing the journalist to testify and avoid jail.The New York TimesAFPLeaders at the G8 meeting decided to give $3 billion to Palestine.ReutersThey also decided to double the aid sent to Africa to $50 billion. “Too little,” said a Uganda aid activist, “too late.”ReutersIsrael planned to ask the United States for $2.2 billion to help them pull out from Gaza.ReutersThe European Parliament voted 648 to 14 against software patents.BBC NewsSeattle’s new energy-efficient city hall building was found to be using 15 to 50 percent more electricity than its larger predecessor.The Seattle Post IntelligencerPolar bears were dying in greater numbers due to global warming,Washington Postand a man was arrested for paying children to yell at him because he is fat.The Salt Lake TribuneMcDonald’s corporation asked Russell Simmons, P. Diddy, and Tommy Hilfiger to redesign the company’s uniforms. CNN MoneyThe United Church of Christ endorsed same-sex marriage.The GuardianFour teenagers were charged with urinating into the holy water at the Saint Pius X church in Rochester, New York,The Pittsburgh Channeland Cedric, a seventy-year-old turtle prone to attacking drainpipes and lawn mowers, was wandering loose in Borrowash, Derbyshire.BBC News
U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow said that Canadian oil was important to American security.Houston ChronicleBulls gored four people in Spain,Reuterscats were suffering from plague in Wyoming,USA Todayand Air Supply played the Karl Marx theater in Cuba.ABC13.comHurricane Dennis killed thirty-two people in the Caribbean.ReutersBoth factions in the Ivory Coast war agreed to disarm by October.ReutersPaula Jones announced that she would visit the Clinton Library,APand a study found that circumcised men are less likely to contract HIV.The AdvocateThe Godfather was being made into a video game.The New York TimesIt was announced that up to 4,700 birds, including burrowing owls, red-tailed hawks, and golden raptors, were being killed each year by a wind farm in Altamont, California.The GuardianA Hungarian-speaking parakeet was loose in Vermont,APand a Massachusettsparrot appeared to understand the concept of zero.MSNBCScientists found that taking regular showers could cause brain damage,Daily Mailfour hundred sheep killed themselves in Turkey,IOL.co.zaand at a funeral in Pennsylvania a corpse was given a pack of cigarettes, a beer, and a remote control and allowed to watch football.Post-Gazette
More from Paul Ford:
Fleming awoke in the dark and his room felt loose, sloshing so badly he gripped the bed. From his window there was nothing but a hallway, and if he craned his neck, a blown lightbulb swung into view. The room pitched up and down and for a moment he thought he might be sick. The word â€śhallwayâ€ť must have a nautical name. Why didnâ€™t they supply a glossary for this cruise? Probably they had, in the welcome packet heâ€™d failed to read. A glossary. A history of the boat, which would be referred to as a ship. Sunny biographies of the captain and crew, who had always dreamed of this life. Lobotomized histories of the islands theyâ€™d visit. Who else had sailed this way. Famous suckwads from the past, slicing through this very water on wooden longships.
A welcome packet, the literary genre most likely to succeed in the new millennium. Why not read about a community you donâ€™t belong to, that doesnâ€™t actually exist, a captain and crew who are, in reality, if that isnâ€™t too much of a downer on your vacation, as indifferent to one another as any set of co-employees at an office or bank? Read doctored personal statements from underpaid crew members â€” because ocean life pays better than money! â€” who hate their lives but have been forced to buy into the mythology of working on a boat, separated now from loved ones and friends, growing lonelier by the second, even while they wait on you and follow your every order.
Average portion of its yearly household expenditures that a South African family will spend on a funeral:
Neuroscientists were hoping to use rat brain waves to find people buried by earthquakes.
Four people were arrested for using a remote-controlled hexacopter to fly two pounds of tobacco to prisoners inside the yard at Calhoun State Prison in Georgia.
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Our congratulations to Alice Munro, winner of the 2013 Nobel Prize for Literature