Pot Pourri

Woman jailed  for sinking husband’s yatch

London: A British woman has been jailed for 18 months for sinking her estranged husband’s 75,000-pound yacht on Valentine’s Day, a media report said.

Mandy Fleming “lost it” when she realised her spouse had splashed cash on his boat after pleading poverty to her, the Guardian newspaper reported Thursday.

She drilled three holes in the hull of the boat, which was berthed at Brighton Marina, and turned on cooker gas taps turning it into a “bomb”, the Old Bailey heard.

Fleming, 47, of Sheerness, Kent, had admitted endangering life by causing criminal damage in 2004, during a hearing last month, the newspaper said.

She wept as she was sentenced Thursday, with judge Richard Hone telling her: “You were a manipulative, angry and troubled individual.”

She was told she would have to serve half the sentence, less the two-and-a-half months she had initially spent in custody.

Fleming had gone to the yacht for a “menage-a-trois” with her then lover, the court heard.

After seeing new electrical equipment and some bills for work which had been done on the yacht, she rang her husband and berated him for spending money on the vessel.

The couple married two years before the incident and the yacht was bought during the marriage. It was her third marriage. They have since divorced. (IANS)

Michele Obama wants to break ‘jumping jack’ record

New York: Michele Obama is all set to enter the Guinness Book by attempting to break the record of most people doing jumping jacks in a period of 24 hours.

The First Lady is teaming up with ‘National Geographic Kids’ for the event, which is a part of the ‘Let’s Move’ campaign against childhood obesity in which more than 20, 450 people will get on their feet and perform jumping jacks for one minute.

Guinness officials, who will signal the start and the end of the event on October 11 and 12, will review the affair themselves, the New York Daily reported.

Hundreds of Washington D.C schoolchildren will be a part of the event to be held at the White House’s South Lawn. (ANI)

Teaching a tortoise to yawn, now that’s research!

London: After spending six months teaching a tortoise to yawn, a professor in Britain remarked: “Training the tortoise to yawn was very hard.”

Anna Wilkinson spent a good six months to teach a red-footed tortoise to yawn in a study on reptile behaviour, The Sun reported.

The research didn’t end there.

Another few months were spent encouraging the pupil into doing it in front of other tortoises to see if they too would yawn.

They didn’t.

Wilkinson of the University of Lincoln has won an Ig Nobel prize for her effort.

The annual prize is handed out at America’s Harvard University by the science humour magazine Annals of Improbable Research for studies that “first make people laugh, then think”.

“This award will raise the profile of research into reptile behaviour. It’s important to get over the serious side of what we do. Training the tortoise to yawn was very hard,” Wilkinson was quoted as saying. (IANS)

Putin turns 59

Moscow: Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who plans to return to the Kremlin as President for a new six-year term in 2012, today turned 59.

According to his spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Putin has a busy working schedule on Friday but “the prime minister will definitely mark the holiday with the family in the evening.”

Putin usually celebrates his birthday away from the limelight among his old friends and family. Putin and his wife Lyudmila have two daughters – Maria and Katerina.

“The Putins usually celebrate all family holidays together. They are an ordinary and normal family,” Peskov was quoted as saying by the Itar-Tass news agency. (IANS)

Beijing airport gets really busy

Beijing: The Beijing Capital International Airport here has seen a record number of passengers during the week-long National Day holiday, Xinhua reported.

The airport handled 1.35 million passengers between Sep 30 and Oct 5, an airport official said Thursday.

The travel peak fell Oct 1 or the start of the holiday, when the airport handled 258,000 travellers.

During the period, the airport handled 8,739 flights, an average of 1,456.5 flights daily and an increase of 3.92 percent compared with the same period last year. (IANS)

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