Watercooler Stories

July 21, 2008 at 6:30 AM
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Body parts are collectibles for some

NEW YORK, July 21 (UPI) -- A 96-year-old retired eye doctor in New Jersey says he keeps Albert Einstein's eyeballs preserved in a jar because they intrigue him.

Henry Abrams of Jersey Shore, who once was the late Nobel Prize-winning physicist's ophthalmologist, said he has the brilliant scientist's eyes stored in a jar of formaldehyde so he can see the "mysteries of the world," the New York Post reported.

"When you look into his eyes, you're looking into the beauties and mysteries of the world," Abrams said. "They are clear as crystal; they seem to have such depth."

Abrams was given the eyes by pathologist Thomas Harvey, who removed Einstein's eyes and brain after his death in 1955. His brain is kept at Princeton University.

Another collector, John Kingsley Lattimer of Edgewater, N.J., purchased the genitals of famed French leader Napoleon Bonaparte, who ruled France during the 1800s.

The urologist bought the preserved sex organ for $2,900 in 1977 and then kept it stored under his bed for the next three decades, the Post said.

Teen bikes to D.C. to boost electric cars

WASHINGTON, July 21 (UPI) -- A Minnesota teenager bicycled 1,500 miles to Washington carrying a petition calling for greater government support for electric vehicles.

Lisa Stoner, 15, of Minneapolis reached her destination Friday, after 32 days of pedaling, The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported. She was accompanied by her mother on a bike and her father and brother, who traveled in a gas-guzzling sport utility vehicle, providing support for the bicyclers.

"It was awesome to get in to D.C. We were like, 'Whoa, we're finally here,'" Liza said. "But yeah, I'm a little tired and it's really hot."

Liza is scheduled to meet Monday with Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn. She will present the senator with a petition carrying 1,200 signatures.

Then the Stoner family will climb into the SUV for the trip to Minneapolis, except for father Jeff. He is flying home to get back to work.

Sydney brothels report business up for WYD

SYDNEY, July 21 (UPI) -- The Adult Business Association in Sydney reports its members were surprised by the increase in business during Pope Benedict XVI's visit to Australia.

"The brothel owners are having to put on extra girls to meet the demand," Chris Seage, a spokesman for the group, told The Sun-Herald.

He said many brothels reported a 20 percent increase in traffic during World Youth Day, which brought thousands of visitors to the city. Much of the business came from the journalists and TV crews in Sydney, not from the young Roman Catholics who were the target audience for four-day World Youth Day celebration, the report said.

Sydney officials billed World Youth Day as the biggest event the city has seen since the 2000 Summer Olympics. Seage said that was true for the sex trade as well.

Illinois town outlaws baggy pants

LYNWOOD, Ill., July 21 (UPI) -- The small Illinois town of Lynwood has passed an ordinance requiring people to cover their underwear in public, officials said.

The ordinance, aimed at ending the practice of wearing pants below the waist, states that people caught exposing 3 inches or more of their underwear will be fined $25, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Other towns have passed similar laws, including Flint, Mich., where offenders can be fined $500, the newspaper reported.

Lynwood Mayor Eugene Williams said the ordinance was passed to help encourage development in the town.

Jonathan Gammon, a barber, said he was relieved to hear his town banned low-hanging pants.

"I don't want to see their drawers, personally," he said. "It probably would scare people from out of town."

The American Civil Liberties Union has said baggy-pants bans target young minority males.

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