March 28, 1983

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Vol 40 Issue 13

Smoking Ban Collapses Fragile Prison Economy

SOLEDAD, CA—A pen-wide smoking ban instituted last week devastated the Salinas Valley State Prison's fragile economy, inmate #67545 said Monday. "There were occasional fluctuations or recalibrations, but a bar of soap used to equal three cigarettes; a Snickers, four; a Percocet, 15," said Kenneth Oglivy, a former WorldCom accountant serving 10 years for embezzlement. "After the ban, the value of a carton of Newports climbed to 50 times its 2003 value. Now that those cigarettes are gone, it's total chaos." Oglivy said Salinas Valley inmates will have to devise a new system of value based on some other commodity, such as assholes.

Scientist Has Nagging Feeling He Left Particle Accelerator On

CHICAGO—University of Chicago particle physicist Matthew Sharp drove halfway home before he was struck with the fear that he'd left the Argonne Tandem Linac Accelerator System running Tuesday night. "I think I powered it down after smashing those 9-GeV electrons into 3.1-GeV positrons, but I don't specifically remember flipping the switch," Sharp said. "Not only does a nine million volt electrostatic tandem Van de Graaff injector accelerator cost a lot to run; it's also a pretty serious fire hazard." Sharp almost turned his car around, but didn't, because the past three times he's gone back to check on the accelerator, he's found it off.

Test Your Jean-Q

Put on your thinking caps, Jeanketeers, because it's time once again to put your brains to the test with my second-ever Jean Teasdale "Trivia" Challenge! People often read my column to see what sassy, outrageous thing I'll say next. I figure, why not pay tribute to my loyal, careful readers with a "trivia" quiz about things in my life? (I put "trivia" in quotation marks because, to me at least, there's nothing trivial about my life! After all, it's my life, right?)

Richard Clarke Speaks Out

Former counterterrorism official Richard Clarke emerged as a controversial, outspoken figure at the Sept. 11 investigation hearings. What do you think?
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