--An 11-year-old Fresno girl has made a game out of world peace--and China's 81-year-old Vice President Ulanhu played along. Michelle Alexander, inventor of the game, was in Beijing with a traveling group of children who are lobbying for world peace. She handed Ulanhu a Chinese flag to move around a map of the world by throws of a dice. A wrong move, such as invading a smaller country, brings penalties--and starting a nuclear war loses the game. Ulanhu, playing at the Great Hall of the People, lost 20 points for spying. Fourteen children from eight countries presented gifts and asked Ulanhu what China was doing to prevent war. He cited China's planned demobilization of a million soldiers.
--There's no word on whether it's still bare, but Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard--and cottage--are for sale. The wooden cabinet is still in the house, which has been converted to a restaurant in Yealmpton, England, local officials said. The real Mother Hubbard moved into the cottage 90 years ago with her pet dog when she retired as housekeeper. And, yes, she did go to that cupboard one day to find it empty, prompting a friend, amateur poet Sarah Martin, to write:
\o7 Old Mother Hubbard
Went to the cupboard
To get her poor dog a bone.
But when she got there,
The cupboard was bare,
And so the poor dog had none. \f7 --It definitely was not a pleasure trip. A Trailways bus finally arrived in Denver after a 3 1/2-day odyssey from Kansas City that included a holdup, a blizzard and two breakdowns. The 600-mile trip should have taken a little more than 14 hours. The five passengers refused to talk to reporters, but they negotiated with Trailways on their arrival and settled for "a considerable amount of money," said a company officer who refused to give his name. The troubles began when a short circuit knocked out the headlights, Dave Owsley, Kansas City district manager for Trailways, said. A replacement bus also broke down, Owsley said. After the driver left to seek help, robbers appeared and took about $1,000 in cash and jewelry. Later, a third bus was stalled by a blizzard.
--Dennis Pitcher doesn't study statistics to spot economic trends. He counts doughnuts. "If the economy is bad, people go to the doughnut shop and they sit there and maybe have one doughnut or two doughnuts, something like that, and drink lots of coffee," he said. "But, if it's good, they pick up a dozen doughnuts and cart them to work or wherever they're going." Pitcher, who operates Gateway Milling Co., which supplies doughnut ingredients to shops in the Peoria, Ill., area, said by his count, the economy's looking up.