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Etc...

Lower taxes, no campaign

Few people, if any, like paying taxes, but for the late Iowa farmer Dewey Byar "it was probably his least favorite thing to do," says Kent Gaudian. He's coexecutor of a trust that will be set up from the proceeds of the auction of Byar's 310 acres, grain bins, and livestock equipment. The annual income from the trust will be used to reduce property taxes in Des Moines County. To Byar, "this was a charitable way to make a difference," says Gaudian.

Hey, get me out of here!

It wasn't the strains of Turkish music wafting through the center of the Dutch town of Sneek that raised eyebrows on a recent Saturday, but the uncanny yowls of distress that accompanied them. What could it be? Well, the owner of a missing cat knew the sound at once, and alerted police. The curious kitty, it seems, had become locked inside a local mosque after Friday prayers. Somehow, it turned on the sound system used to summon the Muslim faithful to prayer, and broadcast its distress call. Unfortunately, for cat and townsfolk alike, it took another 24 hours to track down somebody with a key.

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Teens' top picks in film, TV, music, and sports

Who threw the best onscreen hissy fit? Ben Stiller, in "Zoolander," according to a survey of teens by Seventeen Magazine for its annual Teen Choice Awards. The decidedly playful awards – winners get a surfboard, not a statuette – were given out Sunday in Los Angeles in a ceremony to be broadcast Aug. 19 on Fox. A peek at some other winners:

Best movie actor, drama: Tobey Maguire, "Spider-Man"
Best onscreen chemistry: Mandy Moore and Shane West, "A Walk to Remember"
Summer movie: "Mr. Deeds"
Comedy TV series: "Friends"
Drama TV series: "7th Heaven"
Female athlete: Michelle Kwan
Male athlete: Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
Music artist, male: Ja Rule
Music artist, female: Britney Spears


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