SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- For the past seven years, Bailey Kortright, 11, has hosted one of the most popular and longstanding imaginary tea parties in Bennington Vale. Her afternoon teas, in their early days, were open to every interested child in the affluent suburb. But as demand for seatings grew, exceeding the capacity of Bailey’s bedroom and her meager make-believe staff, the events became more exclusive. The waiting period for a coveted invitation now stretches to the start of the 2014-2015 school year. After Wednesday’s news, however, the hopes of many on that list were dashed. Bailey shocked the community this morning when she announced the end of the weekly Kortright Chai Chanoyu. “I am really sad to tell you we’re closing the doors on the tea party forever. And that’s because a bunch of obnoxious food snobs with allergies to everything have made it impossible to stay in business.”
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- For many Americans, April 15 is tax day, the annual deadline for filing state and federal returns. But this April 15, Google overshadowed the stress and dread associated with the date by hosting a one-day sales event for its wearable computer product Google Glass. Despite the steep price of $1,500 per unit, popular models sold out within hours of Tuesday’s launch. The thin virtual-reality device, which resembles eyeglasses, is designed to take the functionality of a smartphone and make it accessible through a display built into empty frames. But by late afternoon, rival developer Facebook announced the surprise sale of its competing virtual reality device Oculus Rift, which it acquired last month. “Google Glass is severely limited -- it projects a tiny version of a stripped down Android OS in one eye,” a Facebook representative said. “Oculus Rift is an immersive, 360-degree Facebook world that eliminates all the privacy concerns Glass has been catching flak for. But it does so much more.”
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Researchers from San Narciso’s Poeslaw Institute for Social Research and Development (PISRAD) offered new information about the economic necessity of high school proms in a report published Wednesday. Despite the tight spending restrictions many families have imposed on themselves, the money shelled out on proms continued to increase over the last three years. This year, however, data from a Visa survey indicated that families may be reining in their prom budgets. “Although sometimes discounted as nostalgic displays of bygone pageantry -- criticized for being outdated or, even worse, deemed exclusionary to those not in the upper middle classes -- proms experienced a surge in harsh economic conditions that saw consumer spending drop in nearly every other sector,” said Janus Heuchler, PISRAD director and head of the project.
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Although George R.R. Martin creates fantastically lush and detailed realms in his immense "A Song of Fire and Ice" series, a sprawling medieval epic set in the fictitious world of Westeros, the stories do not shy away from the gritty realities of life and death. Far more than sword and sorcery, "A Song of Fire and Ice" exposes readers to the complex, deadly geopolitics associated with empire building and conquest. But now Martin wants to bring his message of life, hard times, death and war to a younger audience. He announced on Tuesday plans to create a series of children's books that promises to "treat kids like the tough, intelligent beings they are and not lie to them about how the world really works." He has tentatively titled the new franchise "Everyone You Love Will Die...Horribly...Butchered Before Your Sad Helpless Little Eyes."
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- In an historic 5 to 4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday overturned a key provision of federal campaign finance law by relaxing limitations on individual contributions. Under the new rules, donors may give money to as many candidates, political parties and committees as they like. The justices also eliminated the cumulative caps of $48,600 to candidates and $74,600 to state and local committees during each term. Political watchdogs and advocates for campaign finance reform noted that under the new rules, or lack thereof, a donor with the financial means could contribute nearly $6 million to support every committee and every member of Congress belonging to his party of choice. Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus praised the high court’s ruling as a “long overdue move to make slogans like ‘Invest in America’ and ‘Own a Piece of the American Dream’ hard realities.”