Ugly and Slow

A booster has been messing up downtown for years

David says he's collected 1,800 signatures of support for his "very upscale" store.

"There's nothing about the store that is a 'smut shop.' It's somewhere that your wife or partner would be very comfortable coming alone, male or female," he says. (And if you need help "coming alone," they have products for that, too.)

The store is planning to test the waters even further: David has applied to join the local chamber of commerce. Maybe he should bring the harpist along for the vote.

Lose-Win Situation

Mike Willcox, the local guy who was aiming to become the first American to win two world championships in the semi-obscure sport of dogfighting control-line model airplanes (see "Top of the World," July 6), came up short.

He finished tied for 12th at the competition in Spain. "I was a little off," he says by e-mail from that country. "Hard to make excuses."

If he was going to make excuses, though, it seems he has a good one. "My special planes got stopped in customs and at the last minute I had to get new planes, and they were of a different design that I was not used to flying," he says. "I had spent all my time training with the other planes, and this is the only thing I can think of that kept me just a little off my game."

Hypervigilant customs officials baffled by strange items that might resemble anthrax-spewing drones -- chalk up another victory for the war on terror.

Not everything went bad for Willcox in Europe, though. He proposed to his girlfriend and she accepted.

"At least I won on one front in Spain," he says.

AlmostMySpace

If a police chief can have an AlmostMySpace page, why not an Astro? Reliever Brad Lidge spent most of 2005 being "Lights Out Lidge," the rally-killer who entered the game to throbbing rock music and an elaborate light show. Then Albert Pujols took him deep in the NLCS, and things haven't been the same since. Click here to read his AlmostMySpace page.

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