Watercooler Stories

By United Press International  |  March 7, 2005 at 6:30 AM
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California libraries bans bad body odor

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., March 6 (UPI) -- A new ordinance in California's San Luis Obispo County allows public librarians to politely ask guests with offensive body odor to leave.

"The point is to make (the library) a comfortable, safe place for everyone to use," said Moe McGee, assistant director of the San Luis Obispo City-County Library.

The prohibition against offensive body odor has been library policy since 1994, however, the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors approved "Library Rules of Conduct and Exclusion Process" as part of the county code, reported the Los Angeles Times.

The rules also include bans against fighting, eating, drinking, sleeping, playing games, printing or viewing illegal materials on library computers, or for not wearing a shirt or shoes.

But McGee said librarians seldom ask people to leave.

"It rarely happens," said McGee. "If it does, we're very careful to give coupons about where they can wash their clothes or take a shower. We do it in as humane a way as possible."

U.K. schools to teach manners, make friends

LONDON, March 6 (UPI) -- British schools are spending nearly $20 million to teach children how to make friends, resolve squabbles and learn manners.

The British Department of Education has told principals social and emotional skills are no longer the main responsibility of parents, reported the Sunday Telegraph.

Children will be encouraged to talk about their emotions and play a quiz called "Guess what I am feeling?" They then will design an "emotional barometer" to rate the strength of their feelings.

They will be encouraged to pass round a cuddly toy to stroke to help them understand the "nice" feelings resulting from a compliment.

Some are against the program.

"Once again, schools are being used to make good the deficiencies of parents," said David Hart of the National Association of Head Teachers. "I think there's a distinct danger that we are drifting more and more into the nanny state."

Computer game mimics Playboy mansion

WELLINGTON, New Zealand, March 6 (UPI) -- A computer game that gives teens a chance to run Hugh Hefner's Playboy mansion has upset some in New Zealand.

"I believe it will breed a new generation of child molesters," said David Lane of the Society for the Promotion of Community Standards. "It's absolutely sicko."

The game allows participants to become part of a Hefner party with the objective of making deals. Triumph with women is recognized by implied sexual intercourse, the Wellington Dominion Post reported.

The game, "The Mansion," was released in New Zealand with a R16 certificate, but Lane believed the game should have been given an R18 certificate.

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