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Off-Kilter

April 30, 1998|Roy Rivenburg | Times Staff Writer

Danger, Will Robinson: The Hare Krishnas are building robots that can spread the Krishna message, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

OK, but only if the robots don't wear orange robes.

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Semper Firearm: The Marine Corps is spending $8.5 million to develop a new rifle to replace the M-16. Naturally, for that kind of money, no ordinary gun will do. The new rifle will be called an "Objective Individual Combat Weapon System."

Which will no doubt inspire a new NRA slogan: "Guns don't kill people, objective individual combat weapon systems kill people."

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Margaritaville 90210: The world's most expensive hangover is finally here. Jose Cuervo has introduced a $1,000 bottle of tequila called 1800 Coleccion.

Made with 100% blue agave, a spiky succulent plant that normally constitutes just 51% of tequila formulations, 1800 Coleccion comes in a Belgian crystal bottle with a hand-sculptured pewter decanter and handsome leather case. Only 347 bottles were produced this year.

So how does it taste? Some reviewers say it has a "structure and complexity [similar] to fine cognacs." A writer at the Hartford Courant found the spirit "gorgeously supple, almost lush, with faint whispers of vanilla."

Oh, come on. Who are these people? That's not the way to taste-test tequila. You're supposed to go to Tijuana's Avenida Revolucion, stick funnels down the throats of party-animal American students and pour the liquor freely. If it's junk, they get sick or pass out. If it's connoisseur-quality, the students buy some illegal objective individual combat weapon systems and shoot up a few of them Krishna robots. Yee-haw!

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Year 2000 Problem: We are terrified of the year 2000. Not because we're expecting space aliens or the Second Coming or a possible presidential race between Al Gore and Dan Quayle, but because of the glut of millennium products. According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is wading through at least 630 millennium trademark requests. Among the products are a stainless steel millennium casket, millennium sunroofs, Third Millennium cigars, the millennium semiautomatic 9-mm gun, Millennium Crunch cereal from General Mills and millennium herbs, pet food, bottled water, lasers and fishing tackle.

The scariest trademark, though, is a London company's "Have a Nice 2000 Millennium" logo and slogan, with smiley faces in the zeros. According to the Journal, the company has acquired rights to slap the logo on more than 2,000 products--everything from scythes to tampons.

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Quote of the Week: Comedian Bill Clinton, on what can fill the "gaping hole" on Thursday night once Seinfeld goes off the air: "How about Congress on C-SPAN? Now, there's a show about nothing."

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Best Supermarket Tabloid Headline: "A Tiger Chewed My Arm Off and Swallowed It Like a Hot Dog With Ketchup!" (Weekly World News)

* Roy Rivenburg can be reached by e-mail at roy.rivenburg@latimes.com.

Contributors: Tony Perry, the Hartford Courant and Hotline. Patricia Corrigan had nothing to do with this column.

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