The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Feline wrecker

Taipei, Dec. 9 (AP): Many couples divorce because the wife refuses to share her husband with another woman. For one Taiwanese couple, the home wrecker was a cat.

A judge said today that he allowed a woman to divorce her husband because she refused to share the couple’s bed with the man's cat. Frequent squabbles over the cat made it difficult for the couple to live together, ruled Chen Tsai-Wang, a Panchiao district court judge in suburban Taipei.

The pampered pet was a problem because it frequently wet the bed, Chen said. Although the man promised to house train the feline, the marriage was beyond repair, the judge said.

China scroll

Shanghai (AP): China has paid a record $3.6 million to buy an 11th-century Chinese scroll from a Japanese museum as part of a new effort to recover national treasures, the government said on Monday. The purchase on Friday was the first by a special fund created this year to recover Chinese masterpieces from overseas, said an official at the state administration of cultural heritage. He gave only his family name, Tang. The administration bought the scroll by calligraphy master Mi Fu at an auction in Beijing, Tang said. He said it had been taken overseas more than a century ago and ended up in a private Japanese museum. The price was the most ever paid for a work of Chinese calligraphy, Tang said. He said the scroll is to be displayed at the Palace Museum in Beijing’s Forbidden City, the ancient home of Chinese emperors.

Hog heaven

Los Angeles (Reuters): For his seventh birthday, Michael Wong-Sasso got down and dirty, totally trashed and ended up face to face with a pile of — well, you know. The grade schooler is passionately interested in garbage trucks, compost and recycling — and dreams of being a trash hauler when he grows up. So he convinced his parents to bypass the usual kiddie venues and toss him a party on Saturday at a real dump. Landfill operator Browning-Ferris Industries agreed to the unusual plan, and set about preparing an odour- and trash-free spot on the edge of the Sunshine Canyon Landfill in suburban Los Angeles, wheeling in piles of fresh dirt to accommodate 82 little feet. Michael and 40 of his friends were in hog heaven as they scampered over mounds of dirt, pushing a variety of toy back hoes, bulldozers and dump trucks, according to his parents, Sophia Wong and Vito Sasso. The kids also made animals from home-made clay and recycled materials, and got an up-close tour of the landfill, she said.

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