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Quick Takes


Saved by the Max David Miller

Quick Takes
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Preppy eating

The hottest ticket in Chicago this summer might be a pop-up diner paying homage to an awkward if popular 1990s teen sitcom. Michelin-starred chef Brian Fisher opened Saved by the Max, a Saved by the Bell–themed pop-up, in Chicago in June. Fisher’s restaurant is styled to mimic the television show’s The Max, where Zack, Kelly, Screech, and others palled around after school. But unlike the kids from the show, potential patrons of Saved by the Max will struggle to find seating. Reservations for lunch and dinner were scooped up almost immediately, though the North Avenue restaurant will be taking walk-in customers for brunch and late-night dining until Aug. 31.

The fix is in

New York City has a population problem—a deer population problem. City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced recently a $2 million plan to sterilize all the bucks living in parks on Staten Island this autumn. According to a 2014 aerial survey, more than 750 deer populate Staten Island, and local experts believe the number is climbing. Those same experts also believe the mayor’s plan is unlikely to work. After all, if the parks employees miss even one Staten Island buck, the plan could backfire. “It’s an incredibly foolish idea,” local zoologist John Rasweiler told the Staten Island Advance. “$2 million the first year? Absolute lunacy, particularly since it’s not going to work.”

Weapon from the heavens

Since archaeologists uncovered the sarcophagus of the ancient Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamen in the 1920s, scientists have been perplexed by the iron dagger found on King Tut’s body. Historians have long been skeptical that Egyptians in King Tut’s time—traditionally dated at the 14th century B.C.—had the ability to forge iron weapons. Now, according to a paper published on May 20 in the journal Meteoritics & Planetary Science, scientists know where the material to make the ancient dagger came from. According to lead author Daniela Comelli of the Polytechnic University of Milan, the iron in Tut’s dagger comes from a meteorite.

Identity politics

Voters in one northeastern Romanian town had to pay careful attention to the names on the ballot during this year’s mayoral election. Mayor Vasile Cepoi ran for a fourth term in Draguseni, a town of about 2,500, in early June. His two opponents: Vasile Cepoi and … Vasile Cepoi. Town hall official Viorel Munteanu explained that the name was common in the region, but admitted to The Associated Press it was “possible” that local rumors were true: Opposing parties might have run the identically named underdogs to confuse voters.

Modern spectacles

Bored inside an art museum, two California teenagers pondered what every teenager encountering modern art ponders. “Is this really what you call art?” 16-year-old Kevin Nguyen told The New York Times. His friend, 17-year-old TJ Khayatan added, “We looked at it and we were like, ‘This is pretty easy. We could make this ourselves.’” And so they did. The San Jose, Calif., teens began experimenting during their May 21 visit to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. At first, they put objects like a jacket or hat on the floor, stood back, and waited for reactions. Nothing. But when Kevin placed his glasses on the floor beneath a sign describing the gallery’s theme, a crowd formed to inspect what they believed was a museum installation. Naturally the teens photographed the crowd huddled around Kevin’s glasses and posted the picture to Twitter.

Burgers for the blind

McDonald’s has long banned patrons from walking through its drive-thru lane out of safety concerns. But that could change thanks to a civil rights lawsuit filed in a Chicago federal court on May 23. Claiming McDonald’s has “no concern whatsoever for the accessibility of the late-night drive-thrus to the disabled,” Scott Magee is suing the fast food giant for what he says is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Magee, who is blind, says the McDonald’s no walk-up policy means he can’t get food at the restaurant when only the drive-thru lane is open. Last year, a different blind customer sued the chain alleging its “Freestyle” soda machines, which employ touch screens, violate the ADA because the blind cannot use them.

Wi-Fi by the book

Apparently sensing a need to clarify the morality of using your neighbor’s internet, a Saudi cleric issued a fatwa in May against stealing Wi-Fi service. The religious ruling from Council of Senior Scholars member Ali Al Hakami declared that Muslims in Saudi Arabia could only use Wi-Fi with the permission of the person paying for it. According to Gulf News, one internet user complained in response to the edict, “We do not need a religious edict to pinpoint such basic things.”

Duck honors

Students at Suntree Elementary School in Melbourne, Fla., had an unusual classmate join their ranks when sixth-graders walked for their elementary graduation this May. The school allowed Sergio the duck, the sixth-grade class pet, to waddle alongside his human classmates. Sergio endeared himself to students after he was the only hatchling from a batch of more than 30 eggs at the beginning of the year.

Single-sex parking

Bowing to stereotypes, the operators of one Chinese parking lot in the nation’s Zhejiang province have created specialty parking spaces for women only. The experimental spaces are marked with pink paint and the international symbol for woman—and they are 50 percent wider than the normal parking spaces. Pan Zhuren, the director of the rest area parking lot, claims female drivers in his parking lot have had trouble fitting cars into normal parking spaces.

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