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October 25, 2003
Double or nothing on that toll, sir?

Our JNS ``Made'' Guy
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (JNS) _ Unable to get his slots proposal past the state legislature, Gov. Robert Ehrlich announced new ``Double Down’’ lanes on all toll roads will take effect Monday.
The far-left lane at all toll booths will be reserved for E-Z Pass participants who want to take a chance on passing through the toll for free. Those who don’t win will be charged double and all will be entered in a $1 million monthly lottery.

Eventually, special gambling-only toll roads may be built for those who are not going anywhere, but just want to bet at the toll booth, the first-term Republican governor said.
``This just makes sense, if we don’t do it, someone else will,’’ Ehrlich said. ``And we can’t let that revenue go out of state.’’
Ehrlich, who has been stymied in his efforts to bring slots machines to Maryland tracks to close the budget gap and compete with tracks in neighboring states, said the idea may be expanded to other sectors of state government.
``Parking meters, income taxes, who knows? I’m just trying to think outside the box here.’’

Posted by Alex at 06:48 AM
October 24, 2003
Ashcroft reminds Americans to put new batteries in fire detectors... Hmmm?

WASHINGTON _ When you set your clocks back an hour this weekend, also remember to change the batteries in your fire-department sponsored listening devices, Homeland Security czar Tom Ridge and Attorney General John Ashcroft reminded Americans on Friday.
``With the winter months upon us, the risk of fire is much higher, particularly among Arab and Muslim Americans,'' Ashcroft said.
``Remember, a safe home is a safe country.''
Homes should have a number of fire detectors, particularly in areas where people tend to congregate, and perhaps discuss world affairs, Ridge said.
Ridge also urged Americans to get extraterrestrial-DNA laden flu shots, particularly illegal aliens.
``No one wants to be kept in bed this winter,'' Ridge said. ``Particularly when they can be a super-soldier in the war against terror.''

Posted by Alex at 02:16 PM
October 02, 2003
Shoreline octopus, closest thing to a free lunch

MERA, Oleiros, A Coruna, Espana (JNS) _ There’s no such thing as a free lunch, you had to walk out onto into the cold water pull the octopus from between the rocks.
``That’s how he would do it,’’ my mother said remembering a meal provided by her cousin, Tono during her 1956 honeymoon.
``He would say `vo buscar o pulpo’ _ (I’m going to look for octopus) and he would pull it from between the rocks, bite it on the neck (to kill it) and bring it home,’’ Ma said.

``Tono, he’s Manolo’s brother,’’ Ma said.
``That’s short for Antonio, he’s tio Juan Antonio’s son, he was married to Felicidad, Abuela’s sister,’’ she continued, diverging into a family history.

``He was fixing up a house in Cabreira that was his wife’s mother’s house,’’ she said. ``Her name was Patela, that wasn’t her real name, but they gave everybody a name. It had something to do with the leg, that wasn’t a very nice name.’’

``Anyhow, she would say `Vai buscar o pulpo’ and he would and he’d go down and get the octopus and bite it and bring it home for lunch, well, not for lunch, but the afternoon meal.’’
``I don’t know now, I doubt if they have so much
with all the building that's going on.''
Boiling is the best way to cook it, although Abuela sometimes stewed it, sometimes put it into empanada. For boiling, about an hour is good, but the octopus has to be lowered into and pulled out of the pot three times before it’s put in for good. Nowadays, everyone says an octopus that has been frozen is more tender because the freezing and thawing helps break down the muscle fiber.
At festivals, a big copper pot over a wood fire is used. Once it’s done boiling (when a tooth pick comes out easily), it's cut with shears into pieces and served on wood plates dressed with olive oil, sea salt, paprika, hot pepper and raw garlic.
``They used to sing all those songs at the festivals. `Na veira do mar, ay moito que ver. Baile de punto de pie, baile se quieres bailar,’’’ Ma said.
Directly translated: ``On the edge of the sea, there is much to see. Dance on the point of your foot, dance if you want to dance.’’

Posted by Alex at 05:04 PM
October 01, 2003
Bush declares United States of Arabia

By Alex Dominguez
JNS Special Correspondent
ISTANBUL, Turkey (JNS) _ President Bush today declared the founding of the United States of Arabia and launched its new currency _ the Aro.
``Just like when our country was started, nobody gets along,'' the president
said, flanked by the leaders of Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine.
``Hopefully, they won't have a civil war like we did.''

The confederation, loosely modeled on the European Union, is designed to help develop the economies of the member countries, particularly Iraq and Palestine, by providing a common currency and open exchange of goods and services between the nations. Saudi oil, Palestinian labor, Jordanian almonds, and Syrian grain, for example, will flow more freely among the open markets.
``Foreign aid will only get us so far. We cannot be a welfare state forever relying on U.S. handouts for our defense and other needs,’’ Iraqi leader Ahmed Chalabi said.
``By providing acess for our products in the United States of Arabia and elsewhere we will be able to take advantage of the opportunity to work hard.’’

Posted by Alex at 03:11 AM