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Despite warnings about West, 007 finds his way into Iran ad

Despite warnings about West, 007 finds his way into Iran ad - seattlepi.com
Even amid warnings about Western infiltration, the famed fictional British spy James Bond still found a way to get into Iran.

An ad hawking Omega watches appeared in the daily newspaper Shargh on Tuesday, featuring actor Daniel Craig wearing one of the timepieces while in character as 007.

While the ads have appeared around the world as the latest Bond film "Spectre" came out, the ad takes on a special significance in Iran.

Suspicions of Britain, a former occupier, and the United States remain high in Iran, even after a recent nuclear deal with world powers.

Youngest US chess master, 10: I've got to work on my endgame

Youngest US chess master, 10: I've got to work on my endgame - seattlepi.com
At age 10, Maximillian Lu is the youngest-ever chess master in the U.S. Even so, he sees room for improvement.

The distinction of being a national master belongs to less than 2 percent of U.S. Chess Federation members and is earned by racking up at least 2,200 points in competitions. It's a rarity among children, but Lu shrugs it off, saying he needs to work on his endgame.

"It's all right. I have to improve other stuff," he said in a recent interview.

Max, who plays 45 minutes to an hour a day, and an hour or two on weekends or before major tournaments, started playing chess in an after-school program when he was 6 and has competed in tournaments in Toronto, South Africa and Dubai, and he represented the United States in Greece this month.

Climbing the ranks has been difficult, he said. In matches with increasingly tough competition, ambitious rivals are always "coming up behind you," he said.

Max became the youngest-ever chess master in September, at 9 years, 11 months and 2 days, according to the U.S. Chess Federation. He toppled the record attained in 2013 by Awonder Liang of Madison, Wisconsin, who became the youngest master at 9 years, 11 months and 15 days.

Young chess players now are stronger than in the past, due partly to online chess games that allow players to practice alone and to efforts by schools, clubs and others to draw more players, said Jean Hoffman, executive director of the U.S. Chess Federation.

For Max's parents, supporting their son's interest is not much different from what soccer moms and dads do, traveling from one competition to the next.

She might have gotten away with poisoning her husband if not for one spelling mistake

She might have gotten away with poisoning her husband if not for one spelling mistake | New York Post

A British woman who tried to kill her husband by poisoning his Christmas drink of sparkling fruit wine with antifreeze was jailed for 15 years Monday after being undone by a spelling mistake and a trail of text messages.

Following family arguments, Jacqueline Patrick, 55, twice tried to kill her husband Douglas, 70, in October and on Christmas Day 2013, by spiking his cherry Lambrini, a drink favored by teenagers looking to get drunk on a low budget.

“Perhaps most shocking of all was the note she gave to the London Ambulance Service purporting to be from her husband, stating that he did not wish to be resuscitated,” Detective Inspector Tracey Miller, of London’s Metropolitan Police, said in a statement.

The forged note showed a misspelling of the word dignity as “dignerty.” When police later asked her to write the word, Jacqueline Patrick made the same mistake.

The couple’s daughter Katherine, 21, was sentenced to three years in jail after admitting to inciting her mother to poison her father, while Jacqueline pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted murder at the family’s south London home.

Cheating accusations mar Zimbabwe's 'Mister Ugly' contest

Cheating accusations mar Zimbabwe's 'Mister Ugly' contest - seattlepi.com

Pageant judges have crowned a new winner of Zimbabwe's 4th annual "Mister Ugly" contest, upsetting supporters of the crowd favorite who called the winner too handsome and prompting rioting at the event.

Judges on Saturday chose 42-year-old Mison Sere, citing his numerous missing front teeth and a wide range of grotesque facial expressions, over William Masvinu, who had held the title since 2012.

Masvinu and his supporters mobbed the judges upon hearing their decision, claiming that Sere was "too handsome" to win and his ugliness wasn't natural since it was based on missing teeth.

"I am naturally ugly. He is not. He is ugly only when he opens his mouth," maintained Masvinu, gesturing at his rival.

Weather device falls from sky, prompts bomb squad response

Weather device falls from sky, prompts bomb squad response - seattlepi.com

The National Weather Service says an instrument that fell from the sky, prompting a Philadelphia bomb squad response, weighed about a pound and had been launched with a weather balloon about 165 miles away.

Mitchell Gaines, of the weather service in Mount Holly, New Jersey, says the instrument called a radiosonde took off Saturday from the agency's office in Sterling, Virginia. High winds carried it to Philadelphia.

Radiosondes are sent up by balloons, taking and transmitting measurements to their home stations as they ascend. When the balloon reaches a certain altitude it pops, and the instrument floats to the ground. It has a postage-paid mailbag inside so finders can return it.

Philly.com reports (http://bit.ly/1jfFkBu) a bomb squad responded when the radiosonde fell from the sky in northeast Philadelphia and struck a vehicle.

How to fly free forever: Put $170 million on your AmEx

How to fly free forever: Put $170 million on your AmEx - seattlepi.com

Chinese billionaire Liu Yiqian, who doesn't exactly struggle to afford a plane ticket, can now likely fly free, in first class, with his whole family, anywhere in the world, for the rest of his life.

All because he bought a painting.

Liu was the winning bidder for Amedeo Modigliani's "Reclining Nude" at a Christie's auction earlier this month— offering $170.4 million— and when the sale closes he'll be putting it on his American Express card.

Liu, a high-profile collector of Chinese antiquities and art, has used his AmEx in the past when he's won art auctions. He put a $36 million tea cup from the Ming Dynasty on his AmEx last year, according to reports, and put other artifacts on his card earlier this year. He and his wife said they plan on using their American Express card to pay for the Modigliani, according to news reports after the sale.

American Express will not confirm Liu Yiqian's Modigliani purchase, or say if it would be the biggest ever on their cards, citing privacy reasons. But it can be done.