A ball of light streaking across the night sky in northern Europe on Saturday at a time when many imagined that Father Christmas was doing his rounds was nothing more than Soyuz rocket debris, Belgian experts say.
"The ball observed ... above Belgium, The Netherlands, France and Germany was the return of the last stage of the Soyuz rocket launcher," Belgium's Royal Observatory said Sunday.Full Story
As most Americans celebrated Christmas Day with warm feasts and crackling fires, members of the country's oldest Polar Bear Club cast off their sweaters for an icy plunge into the Atlantic.
A few dozen men and women of all ages took part in a special Christmas edition of the monthly tradition, gathering on a windy beach at Coney Island on a 40 degrees Fahrenheit (five degrees Celsius) winter's day.Full Story
More than spirits are being lifted this holiday season.
During the four weeks leading up to this Christmas, an estimated $1.84 billion in merchandise will be shoplifted from retailers in the U.S., according to The Global Retail Theft Barometer. That's up about 6 percent from $1.7 billion during the same period last year.Full Story
Nike's latest Air Jordan basketball shoe triggered pre-Christmas stampedes Friday in shopping malls across the United States, resulting in several arrests, police and local media reported.
In Tukwila, Washington, a suburb of Seattle, police used tear gas to tame around 2,000 people who surged into the local mall in the early hours of the morning to get their hands on the coveted Air Jordan 11 Retro Concord.Full Story
Kim Jong-Il's "loving care" for the North Korean people lingers even beyond his death, with residents in the capital enjoying a special treat of fresh fish, official media reported Saturday.
The late leader took steps on the eve of his demise to supply the rare luxury, and his son and successor Jong-Un ensured the fish was rushed to the people while in mourning, the ruling communists' Rodong Sinmun daily reported.Full Story
An Australian woman has won the right to pocket the Aus$100,000 ($101,000) she won on a slot machine, after a casino agreed to pay her the money she won with another gambler's abandoned dollar.
Cecilia Cubillo used a $1 credit someone else had left in a poker machine to hit the jackpot 18 months ago.Full Story
Police say 40,000 pounds (18,000 kilograms) of ice cream have spilled from a semitrailer in the state of Indiana, closing two lanes of an interstate highway at the start of the holiday weekend.
The Journal Gazette and WPTA-TV report the spill happened about 4 p.m. local time Friday and was expected to take as long as six hours to clean up completely. One southbound lane remained open.Full Story
A rare violin worth $172,000 that was mistakenly left onboard a Boston-to-Philadelphia bus by a groggy music student from Taiwan has been found and returned to its grateful owner.
Megabus USA director Bryony Chamberlain said Friday that a cleaning crew recovered the instrument, which had been left in an overhead bin earlier this week. The New England Conservatory student got on a Megabus in Boston with the 176-year-old violin but got off without it late Tuesday, police said.Full Story
An Indonesian girl separated from her family during the 2004Indian Ocean tsunami has been reunited with her family after seven years as a street child.
Mary Yuranda, now 14, showed up at a cafe in the city of Meulaboh in Aceh province, looking for her parents.Full Story
Taiwan business tycoon Samuel Yin, whose assets are reportedly worth more than $3 billion, has pledged to donate 95 percent of his wealth to charity after he dies, local media said Thursday.
The 60-year-old, who is one of the island's richest men, announced the pledge -- the biggest ever of its kind in Taiwan -- in an interview with Business Today, a Taipei-based Chinese-language weekly.Full Story