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KEEP THIS TO YOURSELF, OK?

By mistake, have you ever sent a fax intended only for the eyes of one particular person ... to the wrong party? If so, you probably can empathize with David Bonderman. He heads a Texas investment group that was interested in the new carrier emerging in Europe from the widely publicized financial troubles of Swissair and wanted to schedule an appointment to discuss opportunities with the banking giant in Zurich at the center of the situation. Alas, the confidential fax went not to the bank's chairman but to - of all places - the offices of a leading weekly Swiss business newspaper. It turns out the publication's phone number and the fax line of the banker are identical, but for one digit. A source familiar with the case called the foulup "amusing."

Feeling the need for speed? Play cars top 'best toy' list.

Classic toys with a modern twist - including an electronic hula hoop that records speed and the number of revolutions - are the big winners in this year's Kids' Choice Toy Survey conducted for Duracell, the alkaline battery manufacturer. The toys were ranked according to the votes of more than 700 children ages 4 to 11 on such criteria as long-lasting appeal and whether they encourage social interaction and creativity. Cars of all sorts took up four spots on the list. The top 10 toys and their makers, according to the Duracell survey:

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1. Gearhead Street Savage RC Vehicle (DSI Toys)

2. Racin' Rider (Little Tikes)

3. CAT Tough Loader (Fisher Price)

4. Barbie "Sing With Me" Karaoke Machine (KIDdesigns)

5. Shootout Soccer (Mega Bloks)

6. Power Pop-Up T-Ball (Sport-Fun)

7. Kawasaki Mega Deluxe Drum Pad (DSI Toys, Inc.)

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8. Radio Flyer Racer Pedal Car (Radio Flyer Inc.)

9. E-Shoop Hula Hoop (Wham-O)

10. Rock-A-Bye Chou Chou (Zapf Creation)

- Associated Press


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