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Brazil Mayor Imposes Breathalyzer Tests for Sober Town Hall Meetings

Town hall meetings at a village in Brazil turned into drunken brawls so often that the mayor has resorted to breathalyzer tests before the councilors can take their seats.

The sessions in Pianco in northeast Brazil's Paraiba state had become so notorious the town council is known among locals as "the dog pound" because of all the fighting, news reports said Saturday.

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Monkey Year Inspires Kung Fu, Predictions of Fire, Disease

The new Chinese year is the one to go bananas over. On Feb. 8, the zodiac calendar enters the Year of the Monkey — the ninth of 12 animal signs. Plastic monkeys are adorning shopping centers and office buildings, and government departments have been giving out toy monkeys.

Having a baby in the Year of the Monkey is generally thought to be more auspicious than in that of its predecessor, the sheep, and the cute creature is in any case largely beloved by the masses for its playful and human-like characteristics, despite a penchant for stealing food.

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Throwing Sex Toys 'Wrong Image' for New Zealand, Says PM

Dildo throwing is not a good look for New Zealand and an "appalling way" to behave on the country's national day, Prime Minister John Key said Saturday, angered by an attack on a senior government minister.

Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce was hit in the face by a pink dildo thrown at him by a protester during national day celebrations in the northern town of Waitangi on Friday. 

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Thieving Monkey Bound and Caged in India's Mumbai

The captured monkey, its arms tied tightly behind its back, sits crouched over in a Mumbai residential colony trying with its teeth to untie the cord bound around its ankles.

But this primate -- caught just moments ago by a professional monkey catcher in India's commercial capital -- isn't going anywhere for a while, other than straight into a cage.

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Crew Grounded over Bollywood Crooner's Mid-Air Concert

India's Jet Airways has grounded five crew members for allowing a Bollywood singer to perform over the in-flight announcement system, an airline spokesman said Friday, prompting a social media backlash against the decision.

The temporary suspension of the crew comes after a video showing singer Sonu Nigam's impromptu performance last month went viral, prompting an investigation by authorities.

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Britain's Top Restaurants Ditch a La Carte Menus

In the name of reducing waste and freeing up chefs' creativity, top British restaurants are doing away with long menus to give diners a limited selection of dishes or no choice at all.

"It is we who decide," said Mikael Jonsson, head chef at Hedone in the district of Chiswick in west London.

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Get a Room! Tokyo Zoo's Bashful Pandas Try for a Baby

Two giant pandas at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo have been given some private time in a bid to create a romantic environment in which the bashful creatures can mate.

Public viewing was halted on Thursday in the hope that male Ri Ri -- who zookeepers confirmed has looked friskier in recent days -- will take advantage of the fleeting window that female Shin Shin is in heat.

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Dutch Police to Counter Drones with Eagles

Dutch police are turning to a phalanx of winged predators to solve the problem of unauthorized drone flights in restricted areas such as airports and over crowds: eagles.

Police officers, who are looking for the best way to intercept unauthorized drones, are conducting tests with the birds of prey together with a specialized Dutch company called Guard from Above, a police spokesman said on Wednesday.

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Flying Solo: Chinese Woman only Passenger on New Year Flight

A Chinese woman heading home for the holidays had a commercial airline flight all to herself after grueling delays winnowed down other passengers.

As nearly 100,000 people found themselves stranded at train stations in Guangzhou on Monday trying to leave, the woman, surnamed Zhang, documented her unique trip to the city on social media.

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Japan Vagina Kayak Artist Defiant as Prosecutors Seek Fine

A Japanese artist charged with obscenity for distributing a design for a kayak shaped like her vagina scoffed Monday at a demand by prosecutors to punish her with a $6,600 fine and vowed to appeal if found guilty.

Megumi Igarashi's case has drawn widespread attention and sparked accusations of heavy-handed censorship in a country known for its multi-billion-dollar pornography industry but where actual depictions of genitalia are banned.

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