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Bright and Brief

November 18, 1985

NORTH TONAWANDA, N.Y. (AP) _ George and Clara Busch say they need a break from too much of a good thing, or maybe from too much too quickly.

What they need is a little ″more breathing space″ between deliveries of grandchildren.

While would-be grandpas and grandmas may find it hard to sympathize, consider this: In one month, four grandchildren have been born to Busch children.

While they love the additions, Mrs. Busch said, helping out with new arrivals coming on each other’s heels can wear out a grandmother.

On Oct. 1, the Busches’ daughter Corrine gave birth to a daughter, Ashley Marie Lyons. Corrine and husband David live in North Tonawanda, a few miles north of Buffalo.

Three weeks later, the Busches’ daughter Maureen and Capt. Gordon Elwell, of Wurtsmith, Mich., had twins, a boy, Scott Gordon, and a girl, Meghan Marie, born Oct. 22.

On Nov. 1, son Fred’s wife Beverly gave birth to a daughter, Brittni Ashley, in Jamestown.

And that’s not all. The Busches already had four grandchildren.


CHICAGO (AP) - What do comedian T.R. Benker and video game aficionado Todd Baldwin have in common besides the desire to spend a few days in a department store window?

They want their names in the Guinness Book of World Records, and to that end, Baldwin hopes to play the video game ″Centipede″ more than 5,000 times, and Benker aims to crack nearly 1,500 jokes by Tuesday morning.

Baldwin, 22, who describes himself as an aspiring actor, began his pursuit of the 671/2 -hour record at 1:30 p.m. Saturday. To break it, he must play the game - in which he has scored 1 million points - until 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Benker began telling his quips and one-liners at 9:15 a.m. Sunday. The record - which he holds - is 48 hours. ″I like seeing my name in the Guinness Book,″ says Benker, pausing only momentarily to talk to a reporter.

Benker, 23, admits he’ll have repetitions throughout his performance, but he predicts by 9:16 Tuesday morning he’ll have told more than 1,500 jokes. The secret, he says, is feedback. ″It gives me time to think and come up with some more.″

Both men, according to Guinness rules, can take a five-minute break each hour and they are allowed a two-hour nap every 24 hours.

″I’m going crazy already,″ Baldwin said. But, he adds, ″I love the attention.″

The duo is featured in a Chicago department store’s display window. And although Benker is equipped with a microphone that thunders his voice to the sparse crowds that gather to cheer them on or simply to gawk, Baldwin says his companion’s joke telling doesn’t bother him.

On the contrary, said Baldwin. ″If it weren’t for that guy, I’d be asleep by now.″


CLINTON, Iowa (AP) - David Soibel’s Old Town isn’t like any delicatessen you’ve ever been to - or any waterbed store, either.

For eight weeks, he’s been selling sandwiches as well as waterbeds at the same downtown Clinton building.

He thinks it’s a natural: ″I felt it would tie together - the concept of eating and sleeping.″

Soibel said he came up with the idea when he was operating his Waterbeds Unlimited store and needed a quick lunch. He called his wife, Mary, and asked her to bring him a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Thus, Old Town was conceived.

After picking up the necessary permits - and a few chuckles - at city hall, the Soibels converted the front half of the waterbed store into a deli-style restaurant. The waterbeds were moved to the back of the 3,600-square-foot building, and a kitchen, salad bar and eating area for 44 customers were added.

″We have had quite a few people who will eat lunch and then lay down a few minutes and relax on the waterbeds,″ Soibel said.

And it has paid off, said Soibel. ″One who did yesterday bought a waterbed.″


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - An Albuquerque company claims it has caught Halley’s Comet.

Sandia Energy Systems, a solar energy firm, has Bernalillo County deed number 8596695 which describes real estate in ″the solar system, Milky Way galaxy.″

The deed describes the ″property″ as, ″The comet known as Halley’s, known to pass the planet Earth approximately every 76 years. Consisting of a core of ice 10 miles in diameter and a tail of varying length. This quitclaim includes all energy and mineral rights and all rights whatsoever in the Halley’s Comet.″

The deed is notorized and recorded.

Company spokesman Gregg Fosse said his firm might be parceling out the core of the comet to interested parties.

And he said energy and mineral lease programs also are being considered, possibly for the tail, a gaseous cloud up to 50 million miles long.

Halley’s Comet ″should give us an edge on the competition and allow us to expand into new fields of energy,″ Fosse said.

The comet is currently visible from Earth.

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