Feature

Saudi Arabian children, and more

Good week for: Saudi Arabian children, Stereotypes, Alpo; Bad week for: The only pig in Afghanistan, Blaming the neighbors, Riding under the influence

Good week for:

Saudi Arabian children, after that nation’s embarrassed government said it would consider banning marriage for girls under 18. The possible policy change follows an international outcry over news that an 8-year-old Saudi girl had been married to, and granted a divorce from, a man in his 50s.

Stereotypes, after a survey found that the French spend more time sleeping and eating than do people in any other developed nation. The average Frenchman sleeps nine hours a day, and whiles away two hours a day over his meals.

Alpo, after researchers presented volunteers with five types of mashed-up food, including paté, duck liver mousse, and dog food, and found that only three out of 18 were able to correctly distinguish the dog food from the paté, the mousse, and the liverwurst.

Bad week for:

The only pig in Afghanistan, which has been moved from its pen at the Kabul Zoo into a locked room out of fear of swine flu.

Blaming the neighbors, after an 82-year-old German man called police to complain that someone was playing the same song over and over again at all hours of the day and night. Officers found that the man had a musical greeting card on his windowsill, where occasional breezes opened it just enough to trigger the irritating tune.

Riding under the influence, when a man in a cowboy hat riding his horse through a Denver suburb was pulled over and charged with being drunk. Police said deciding what to do with the horse was “a tricky call.” In drunken-driving cases, they said, “you can tow a car.” A stable owner wound up giving the horse—and its rider—a lift home.

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