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Off the News

For Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Going loco on Four Loko

The FDA's move toward a national ban of caffeinated alcoholic drinks such as Four Loko is, like the controversial beverages themselves, generating considerable buzz. Supporters of a ban say caffeine impairs drinkers' ability to tell when they're drunk. Declare a prohibition, critics say, and you'd have to ban Irish coffees and rum and colas, too.

We're sure of this much: 23.5 ounces of malt liquor, masked to taste like fruit punch, then spiked with caffeine is not only a potent and potentially risky brew but irresponsible marketing directly targeting young people who often don't know better.

Kiss me Kate, says Wills

All eyes are on Kate, now that the engagement is official. Yes, the engagement, which will lead to next year's the wedding.

We're talking, of course, about Catherine "Kate" Elizabeth Middleton, whose betrothal to Prince William, the future king of England, was announced yesterday, setting off a media frenzy in the U.K. -- and on the Web.

Your need-to-know facts: The couple has been dating since 2003 after meeting at St. Andrews University in Scotland (there was a brief split in April 2007); both are 28; he gave her the blue sapphire diamond engagement ring that had belonged to his late mother, Diana; they will wed next spring or summer.

These facts, and many, many more, will become public lore as the wedding hoopla intensifies. Congratulations, kids, and good luck.

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