Chips All Around 
In a display of pagentry celebrating the 160th anniversary of the invention of the potato chip, reenactors converged on Saratoga Springs, New York, birthplace of the ubiquitous snack food. According to legend, Chef George Crum created the snack out of spite, having overcooked and oversalted thinly sliced potatoes ordered by a troublesome customer.

Robert Crum, who claims to be a decendant of the famous chef, portrayed the harried hash-slinger at this year's Crum Days reenactment event. "People are finally giving the chip some of the recognition it deserves," notes Crum. "We have potato slicing races, potato slice frying races, fried potato slice salting races ... it's all amazingly competative."

Festival organizers deny that the event is nothing more than an excuse to get thousands of people to spend a weekend preparing "kettle style" potato chips for little or no compensation. The hundreds of pounds of potato chips generated in the course of the competitions "are donated to charitable organizations around east-central New York state," according to publicist Nigel Crum, who insists he is no relation.

Each year, the town builds a replica of the original Moon's Lake House, the restaurant where the potato chip was first made, to serve as headquarters for the festivities. For reasons no one has been able to fully explain, the replica manages to catch fire toward the end of the weekend and ends up burnt to the ground. "It's all very traditional, really," says Alice Crum (no relation), "The original Moon's Lake House never could stay standing for very long, no matter who rebuilt it."

Festivities are expected to wrap up tomorrow evening with a traditional s'mores party, celebrating another traditional snack food that may or may not have been created by George Crum.

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The Future Finally Arrives 
The Motor City is abuzz with news from Ford Motor Company -- the 2014 line-up will include the first ever flying car from a major automobile manufacturer. Hailed as major breakthrough by commuters and an unquestionable disaster by leading insurers, the new Ford Falcon is expected to be in showrooms by late October. When asked why this landmark vehicle was debuting as a Ford and not a Lincoln model, CEO A.R. Mulally pointed out, "The Model T was a common car for the common consumer. We envisioned the new Falcon as a flying vehicle for the common consumer -- a way to make the sky open to as many people as possible."

Ford's announcement has met with enthusiastic approval of S.C. Simmons, long-time flying car enthusiast. "This could cut my daily commute to about a third of what it is now," Simmons exclaimed, "At least until everybody else had one, too."

Not everybody is sure the future is so bright for aviated autos. Industry skeptic W.S. Higgins points out that, "over the years, the buying public has expressed a greater interest in unobtainable jet-packs over unobtainable flying cars. It's only a matter of time before some company brings a vehicle with more vertical lift and really spiffy jets to market. Buyers may hold off until a dominant air transport methodology emerges. No one wants to be stuck with a steam-powered car in a world of gas engines."

For now, Ford seems to be leading the way to the open skies, but General Motors is rumored to be investing heavily in strategic helium reserves and should not be counted out of the game.

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West To Retake Cowl 
To the surprise of many, Adam West (84) has been named to play Batman in an upcoming feature film. West, best known for his portrayal of the iconic crime-fighter in the 1960s, was cited by future "Batman: The Dark Knight Rises Slowly" director Joss Whedon as being the one actor who could bring back to the screen something crucial that has been missing from the Batman franchise for decades: "A sense of campy vulnerability."

"Have you been to any of the Batman movies in the past 25 years?" asked Whedon. "There's no suspense in the character. No feeling that, at any moment, the Riddler might remove the cowl and expose him to the harsh light of day. I need to make Batman -- and Bruce Wayne -- someone that we can believe in, but also wink and grin about. Adam West really is the only actor who brings that to the character."

In "Batman: The Dark Knight Rises Slowly", Bruce Wayne has retired from crime fighting once more. This time, his plans of quietly raising championship corgis are threatened by the return of The Queen, a dangerously deluded villain who is bent upon bringing all of corgi-dom under her control with a mind-controlling chew toy.

Forced back into action to save the animals he loves, the caped crusader seeks out a forgotten strain of wolfsbane that gives canines the will to resist evil influences.

"West will totally rock this," beamed Whedon.

When asked to comment on his return to the Bat Cave, West merely winked, grinned, and commented, "Atomic batteries to power!"

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