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Starbucks to close 600 stores in the US: The coffee shop said Tuesday it's set to close 600 stores in the next year and cut back the new stores it had planned to open. Starbucks reports that 70 percent of the stores scheduled to close had opened since the beginning of 2006. Once those underperforming stores have shut down (a process that won't be complete until the first half of 2009), Starbucks expects the change to boost earnings by $100 million a year.

Civil rights groups call yearbook incident a "hate crime": When a Covina high school published racially insensitive false names for members of the Black Student Union, activists demanded a formal apology and a hate crime investigation. A student on the yearbook staff at Charter Oak High School placed fake names like "Tay Tay Shaniqua," "Crisphy Nanos" and "Laquan White," next to pictures of Black Student Union members in the yearbook. The misidentified students were given stickers with their correct names to be placed over the mistake in their books, and Principal Kathleen Wiard says she has contacted the yearbook's publisher about replacing the offensive pages. The school is looking further into the incident.

Heavy babies susceptible to arthritis as adults: People born heavy are twice as likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis as their normal weight peers, according to a study published in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. In the study, researchers analyzed data from 87,00 women and found the likelihood of being diagnosed with the joint condition was doubled in women born weighing more than ten pounds, compared to those weighing seven to 8.5 pounds. "If fetal nutrition has an impact on future risk of rheumatoid arthritis, this could be a potentially modifiable risk factor," says lead author Dr. Lisa Mandl.

Man arrested for drinking boy's urine: An Ohio man named Alan Patton, 54, told police last week he likes to drink the urine of adolescent boys. According to authorites, Patton visits family restaurants and movie theaters, waits for boys in a bathroom stall, shuts off the water to the urinal and puts a cup in the bottom. Police say Patton's been doing this for over 40 years. "I like it because it makes me closer to them--like I'm drinking their youth," says Patton. The man is a registered sexual predator who was convicted of rape 13 years ago.


More info: Yearbook, Arthritis, Bathroom, Starbucks


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