UPI NewsTrack Quirks in the News

Dec. 31, 2012 at 5:00 PM
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Word list: Scrap the term 'fiscal cliff'

SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich., Dec. 31 (UPI) -- Word-minders at Lake Superior State University say "fiscal cliff" should disappear as the term used for the U.S. budget crisis.

As the country headed toward the so-called cliff, contributors threw the phrase over the usage cliff in the school's 38th annual List of Words to be Banished from the Queen's English for Misuse, Overuse and General Uselessness, the university in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., said in a release.

The political realm contributed to the list.

The terms job creator/creation, double-down and kick the can down the road also made the list, which is released on the last day of each year.

University officials said this year's list was culled from nominations received mostly through its website.

Among the comments the university published about the fiscal cliff and the need to clip it from the lexicon, Donna in Johnstown, N.Y., wrote, "Makes me want to throw someone over a real cliff."

Kicking the can down the road was another term that should be axed.

"I'm surprised it wasn't on your 2012 list -- were you just kicking the, um, phrase down the road to 2013?" said T. Jones of Ann Arbor, Mich.

Police: Woman was upset about laundry cash

JERSEY CITY, N.J., Dec. 31 (UPI) -- Police in New Jersey said they arrested a woman accused of charging at her boyfriend with a hammer when he refused to pay for laundry.

Jersey City police said they responded to an apartment Saturday on a 2:52 p.m. report of a man locked in a bathroom while his girlfriend pounded on the door with a hammer, The Jersey (Jersey City, N.J.) Journal reported Monday.

Police said they subdued Jazmin Duran, 24, after a brief struggle and she was arrested on charges of aggravated assault, terroristic threats, criminal mischief, domestic violence, possession of weapon, unlawful possession of a weapon and resisting arrest.

The 49-year-old boyfriend, whom police said was locked in the bathroom when they arrived, told officers Duran became irate and grabbed the hammer when he told her he didn't want to give her money to do her laundry.

The man said Duran smashed a bedroom mirror and put holes in a TV screen before charging at him with the tool.

"I'm going to hit you in the head with the hammer," the alleged victim quoted Duran as saying.

Police: Drunk man crashed into bar

GLADSTONE, Mich., Dec. 31 (UPI) -- Police in Michigan said they arrested a man who crashed his car through the wall of a bar and ended up in the establishment's bathroom.

Gladstone Public Safety said the 27-year-old man, whose name was not released, hit a parked car and crashed through a storage shed before ending up in the bathroom of Gibby's Bar about 1 a.m. Monday, WLUC-TV, Marquette, reported Monday.

Police said there were 10 people inside the bar at the time of the crash, but no injuries were reported.

The man was taken to the Delta County Jail on a charge of operating while intoxicated.

Parliament shells out $130K on costumes

LONDON, Dec. 31 (UPI) -- Freedom of Information requests by The Sun revealed Britain's Parliament spent more than $130,000 in taxpayer money on ceremonial garments for officials.

The newspaper said some of the outfits for officials such as the Sergeant at Arms cost more than $8,100 apiece.

The Sun said news of the spending on ceremonial garments -- which include tailor-made breeches, court coats, waistcoats, lace cuffs, wing collars, men's tights, gloves, braces and wigs -- comes amid spending cuts and tax increases in the country.

John O'Connell of the TaxPayers' Alliance said the public is unlikely to be pleased with the news.

"Huge bills for ceremonial dress won't go down well with families feeling the pinch," he said.

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