Bizarre News-Neiman Marcus Christmas Book

October 7, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
The stories may be strange, but they're trueNEIMAN MARCUS CHRISTMAS BOOK
NEW YORK (AP) - Sure, it's the Great Recession -- but some people have money to spend, and plenty of it, too. Neiman Marcus is out with its Christmas Book. This year's signature his-and-hers gift is a $250,000 private plane and flying lessons for two. For 105-grand you can get that special someone a limited edition Jaguar. An electric Cupcake Car for the kiddies will set up back 25-K. But Neimans points out more than 40 percent of the gifts in the holiday catalog cost less than 250 bucks. And for those who want to go green their greenbacks, Neimans has an eco-friendly chandelier made of 366 recycled plastic bottles. That goes $12,000.

ZAGAT GUIDE
NEW YORK (AP) - Hold the booze, skip the appetizers and forget about dessert. That's what a lot of New Yorkers are saying when they eat out these days. The latest edition of the Zagat guide to New York City restaurants finds people are trying to save some money when eating out. They're also eating fewer restaurant meals than a year ago. But there is an upside to dining out during hard times. It's easier to get a table and diners report finding better restaurant deals.

JAIL ADS PUNTA
GORDA, Fla. (AP) - Talk about a captive audience! Well, a southwest Florida sheriff's department is selling ad time on jailhouse TVs. The Charlotte County Sheriff's Office will offer ads on the video monitors used by jail visitors to communicate with inmates. The sheriff's office says rotating still-frame ads will be shown when the monitors are not in use by a visitor. And the potential advertisers? The sheriff will offer the ads to lawyers and other services that might be of interest to the jailhouse audience. Officials say money from the ads will go in a welfare fund for the inmates.

WEB CAM-BURGLARY
MIDWEST CITY, Okla. (AP) - It's a case of long-distance crime-stoppers. Police in Midwest City, Okla., got a tip from a woman in Philippines about teenagers ripping off an apartment. The woman (Maribel Chouinard) was watching her husband's place on a Web cam from 8,000 miles away. She called her husband, who is a master sergeant at Tinker Air Force Base. He notified police. Officers report finding two teens near the apartment and later locating a third suspect. Police say all three were ID'd in a photo lineup e-mailed to the woman in the Philippines. She's waiting for her visa papers to be processed, so she can join her husband in the states.

HONEST PATRON
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Leslie Lorentzen found more than a good book at a Barnes and Noble in Anchorage, Alaska. She spotted a bank envelope stuffed with cash in the bookstore's restroom. It contained nearly $4,000. Lorentzen didn't hesitate in turning in all that dough. After a police officer responded to her call, the woman who lost the money contacted the bookstore. Katherine Nelson was put in touch with the officer. Police say Nelson is now thrilled to get her money back.

VINTAGE SPEED
ROSEBURG, Ore. (AP) - Jeremy Bolduc feels the need for speed -- old school style. He recently set a new national speed record on a 1936 Indian Chief motorcycle. He averaged 99.8 miles per hour over the Utah salt flats. On the second of the two required runs, Bolduc topped 102. Bolduc is a motorcycle technician at a Roseburg, Ore., dealer. The vintage Indian has been in his family for almost 40 years. But he's not done yet. Bolduc tells a local paper (News-Review) he'll be back on the salt flats next year to go even faster.

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