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Of Human Interest: News-lite

By PENNY NELSON BARTHOLOMEW, United Press International   |   April 26, 2002 at 7:33 AM   |   Comments

ALL THE PERKS

A Jerusalem hotel struggling to fill rooms in what has become one of the world's most dangerous cities is offering guests flak jackets as an incentive.

An offer circulated this week among reporters said Jerusalem's Eldan Hotel was offering to rent flak jackets for $40 a week and helmets for $20. "It was definitely an incentive," the hotel's general manager, Varda Issan, said.

Jerusalem has been rocked by a series of car bombs and suicide attacks in cafes, restaurants and buses. Foreign tourists and Israelis have been scared away, leaving major hotels are empty. However, journalists rush to trouble spots from which other people try to get away.

In a bid to survive, hotel rates have been cut and special deals have been offered for meals, laundry services and phones. Even rental cars are upgraded.

During the recent heavy fighting in the West Bank, all the hotel's flak jackets and helmets were taken, Issan said. "When there was shooting in Bethlehem, nobody took a chance," she said.

An attempt to reach the front desk manager failed. He had been called up for reserve military duty.

(Thanks to UPI's Joshua Brilliant in Jerusalem)


NEW DIGS

Hollywood's temporary home of the stars has undergone a $20 million, two-year renovation.

Opened in 1972, the sprawling Oakwood Toluca Hills Apartments in Burbank, Calif., has been a home away from home to numerous stars due to its hillside location -- nestled between the Universal, Warner Bros. and Disney studios -- as well as its flexible leasing policies and eye-catching amenities.

"It seems virtually everyone in show business has lived here at one time or another," says Joni Rodenbusch, senior account executive for Oakwood Worldwide, citing such past guests as Jennifer Love Hewitt, Kirsten Dunst, Ricky Martin and Brian McKnight.

The complex has also appeared as a site for the "Jaywalking" segments of "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno."


LETTUCE SHOW YOU SOME SALAD HISTORY

Want to know if Caesar had anything to do with his Romaine salad namesake? Check out the Museum of Salad, which opens May 1 in New York City (at the South Street Seaport, Pier 17 Building).

Dole, a leading brand of salad in the United States, has endowed the museum to launch National Salad Month, May 1-31. Sammy Salad, the company's mascot, will cut the ribbon to open the Museum of Salad to the public. White-uniformed student chefs from the New York Restaurant School will be the first "foodies" to see the exhibit.


REASONS TO CELEBRATE THIS WEEKEND:

FRIDAY: Today is National Arbor Day.

It's also Hug A Prom Sponsor Day (Web site: stumpsparty.com) and Hug An Australian Day (Web site: wellcat.com).

This is National Hairball Awareness Day. Of course, if you have cats, EVERY day can be hairball awareness day. (Web site: hillspet.com)

Today is Richter Scale Day, commemorating American seismologist Charles Francis Richter, who developed the scale that bears his name by which to measure an earthquake's magnitude.

It's Confederate Memorial Day in Florida and Georgia.

This is Common Prayer Day, "Store Bededag," in Denmark and Union Day in Tanzania.

SATURDAY: This is Babe Ruth Day, which was celebrated in ballparks around the United States as well as in Japan. On this date in 1947, Ruth -- suffering from terminal throat cancer -- appeared at Yankee Stadium to thank his former club.

Today is National Rebuilding Day. (Web site: rebuildingtogether.org)

It's also National Sense of Smell Day (Web site: senseofsmell.org) and Native American Heritage Day.

Sierra Leone and also Togo celebrate their Independence Day holidays today.

This is Freedom Day in South Africa, celebrating the day in 1994 when for the first time all South Africans were free to vote.

And today is National Day in Yugoslavia, commemorating the 10th anniversary of the founding of the Yugoslav Federation.

SUNDAY: This is Kiss-Your-Mate Day. Show him or her how much you really care.

Today is Mother, Father Deaf Day in honor of hearing-impaired parents.

It's Workers Memorial Day. In Canada, it's a National Day of Mourning in Canada for those injured or killed on the job.

This is Islamic State's Victory Day in Afghanistan, celebrating the capture of Kabul by Mujaheddin forces in 1992.

And today is Orthodox Palm Sunday.

MONDAY: Today through May 5 is Police Officers Who Gave Their Lives In The Line Of Duty Week.

This is Confederate Memorial Day in Mississippi.

Today through May 5 are the Golden Week Holidays in Japan. This period includes Greenery Day (April 29), Constitution Memorial Day (May 3) and Children's Day (May 5).

And this is Cheng Cheng Kung Landing Day in Taiwan, commemorating the arrival in 1661 of Ming Dynasty loyalist Cheng Cheng Kung, who ousted the Dutch colonists who'd occupied Taiwan for 37 years.

(Thanks to Chase's 2002 Calendar of Events)


BY THE WAY...

Adolf Hitler dictated much of "Mein Kampf" to this person when both were imprisoned. Who?

Rudolph Hess, born on this date in 1894.

© 2002 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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