Saturday, December 20, 2014


’Tis the season for togetherness, but some find solace in moments of solitude’Tis the season for togetherness, but some find sol

TORONTO — The holidays are widely seen as a time of togetherness to gather for dinners, cocktail parties, gift exchanges and outdoor activities, yet whether by choice or circumstance, some find solace in moments of solitude during the festive season.

City’s ugly Christmas tree gets the Charlie Brown treatment - and offers a seasonal message

READING, Pa. — Reading’s official Christmas tree has brought the city plenty of grief. Good grief.

American Kennel Club adds 4 new breeds; they’ll be eligible for Westminster dog show in 2016

NEW YORK — A Spanish farm and fishing dog, a Sicilian rabbit-hunting breed, an Italian sheepdog with a distinctive matted coat and a rugged South African watchdog are joining the American Kennel Club pack.

Widow’s rings fetch $21k for Salvation Army toy fund; buyer wants to return them to donor

BOSTON — Not even J.R.R. Tolkien could dream up rings as precious as these.
A former Salvation Army bell ringer is paying $21,000 for a diamond engagement ring and wedding band that a widow placed inside a red donation kettle in Boston. A note accompanying the rings asked that the jewelry be sold and the proceeds used to buy toys for poor children.

Parents flock to eBay to dress their children like Prince George for Christmas

LONDON — Parents looking to dress their toddlers like Prince George for Christmas may be too late.
The royal toddler was seen wearing a blue sweater decorated with soldiers of a Guards regiment in bearskin hats and red tunics in official holiday pictures released last weekend.

Rumbly, rusty and awesome: Rat rods, the vintage vehicles made into creatively ragtag rides

SAUGERTIES, N.Y. — Peter Duvaloois’ rat rods are way cooler than your car.
The fast machines, pieced together from vintage parts and scrapyard finds, also are rumblier, rustier and turn more heads on the highway.

In hotbed of firearm freedom, a hamburger comes with a side of handgun

RIFLE, Colo. — In this saloon-style restaurant, it’s not just the fried jalapenos packing heat.
A spicy hamburger, here, comes with a side of handgun.
America’s dual love affairs with fast-food and firepower coalesce into one at Shooters Grill, just off the highway where Colorado’s mountains morph into Utah’s desert canyons.
The waitresses are armed. So are many of the patrons.

The cult of culture: Merriam-Webster names ‘culture’ its 2014 word of the year

NEW YORK — A nation, a workplace, an ethnicity, a passion, an outsized personality. The people who comprise these things, who fawn or rail against them, are behind Merriam-Webster’s 2014 word of the year: culture.

Tappy holidays: New York’s Genesee brewery builds Christmas tree out of 300 empty beer kegs

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — A western New York brewery has constructed a Christmas tree out of hundreds of beer kegs. All that’s missing is the beer.
The Genesee Brewing Co. built the 23-foot (75-feet)-high Christmas tree out of 300 stainless steel kegs outsides its Brew House in downtown Rochester.

Cagey canine eludes searchers for 5 months despite use of bacon, chicken, pet psychic

MONTPELIER, Vt. — Rotisserie chicken, bacon, dog toys, more than a dozen volunteers and even a psychic have not been enough to find Murphy, an elusive golden retriever whose owner’s five-month search for the beloved animal has captivated one mountainous area of Vermont.

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