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Big Trouble in Little Europe

August 27, 1992|CHARLES PERRY

The European Economic Community is making it hard for the former Communist nations to sell their produce. The French, for instance, won't allow the import of high-quality Romanian goose liver because Romania doesn't have an approved slaughterhouse within hundreds of miles of its geese. Eastern Europe is just starting to fight back: The Poles are now testing Dutch tomatoes for radiation.

Smart as a Whippet

Smart Dogs, a wheat-and-soy vegetarian frank that boasts only 40 calories (but a full 8 grams of protein, twice as much as lots of meat dogs) has a refreshingly modest self-assessment: "mild but true hot dog flavor." It probably wouldn't win over a Dodger Dog loyalist, but it does taste distinctly better than the traditional chalky tofu dog. Available at health food stores such as Mrs. Gooch's at $2.99.

The Sandwich Menace

The September issue of Nutrition Action Healthletter says most American sandwiches contain half (or more) of the total fat most people should eat in a day. The worst include bologna, salami, Swiss cheese, grilled American cheese and BLT, all with more than 25 grams of fat; the best is turkey breast at 4 grams. But that's a plain turkey breast, without mayonnaise--spreading a tablespoon of mayo on the bread adds 22 grams of fat all by itself.

We Want to Watch Them Flip It

This Sunday, they'll be going for a record in Cleveland: a three-ton hamburger. The meat, shoveled five inches deep onto a custom-made 20-foot-square grill, will fry for three hours. When it's done, a Cleveland charity called Help America Foundation will cut the big burger into 15,000 pieces and distribute it to local hunger centers.

Sugar and Spice and Vitamins and Minerals

More girls than boys between 8 and 12 told the marketing firm Xtreme that sweets are their favorite food, but 8% of the 16- to 18-year-old girls said vegetables were their favorite, while boys that age didn't mention vegetables at all.

Tip Tips

Anybody can figure out how to calculate a 15% or 20% tip, though it's handy to have a pre-calculated table, as the Pocket Tipper does. What makes this little folding guide really handy is the list of whom to tip, and how much, for 30 different services. For instance, a restroom attendant gets 50 cents, a coat attendant $1, musicians $1-$5. Etiquette & Company, the Pocket Tipper's publisher, gets $2. (That's all--tax, tip and shipping included. Mail to Box 653, Carmichael, Calif. 94509, )

Could I Borrow a Tablespoon of Golf Balls?

The Aquaflyte is a golf ball with a core of compressed sodium bicarbonate--it's designed to disintegrate in water, so that wild life in golf course water traps don't get forced out of their ecological niches by lost balls. And so no golfer's house need be without an emergency bicarb supply.

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