Wayward Stanley Cup retrieved from airport

Sunday, August 29, 2004

FORT ST. JOHN, British Columbia -- The Stanley Cup spent a night in luggage limbo. The fabled hockey trophy disappeared during an Air Canada flight from Vancouver to Fort St. John over last weekend when Vancouver airline officials removed it from the plane because of weight restrictions. Walter Neubrand, keeper of the Cup, was trying to deliver the trophy to Jake Goertzen, head scout for the Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning. Air Canada agents checked the plane but there was no sign of the Cup or its special travel container. After a call to Vancouver, they learned the 35-pound Cup was sitting in the Vancouver airport's luggage area 750 miles away. The Cup was held in a secured facility overnight and flown to Fort St. John to be placed in its rightful hands early Monday.

Michigan residents happy to try out new toilets

CHAMPION, Mich. -- Residents here are flush with excitement at being picked to review toilets. American Standard, manufacturer of bathroom and kitchen fixtures, is installing its new "Champion" line of toilets free of charge to some local residents and businesses. In exchange, those lucky few must participate in a marketing survey. The new-generation commode replaces the standard ball-and-chain flushing system with a "flush tower" design and valve configuration that boosts water flow, preventing clogs and overflows. The company bills the toilets as so reliable, users can "throw away their plungers." They retail for $249 to $569, depending on model and color.

Rescued dachshunds gather for reunion

TACOMA, Wash. -- There was plenty of excitement to go around Aug. 22 at a reunion that drew nine dachshunds out of more than three dozen that were rescued from squalid conditions 2 1/2 years ago. Tails wagged in a blur of excitement as the wiener dogs sniffed and licked long-lost buddies, wrapping leashes around chairs and owners' legs on the deck of the Old House Cafe. The well-fed, well-groomed dachshunds were a far cry from the pathetic creatures found in excrement-laden cages at a house on Feb. 13, 2002. The owner, Sarah Jane Wakeman, was sentenced to two years on probation and ordered to pay the Humane Society of Tacoma & Pierce County $3,000 after pleading guilty to second-degree animal cruelty and running a kennel without a license.

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