Quirky World ... Millionaire leaves $100k in will for her 32 pet cockatiels

US: A New York City millionaire has bequeathed a $100,000 (€89,700) trust fund to care for her 32 pet cockatiels.

The New York Post reported on Saturday that Leslie Ann Mandel’s will asks that the small parrots continue living in an aviary at her $4m East Hampton home.

The will names each bird, from Margie and Nicki to Zara and Zack 12.

With Mandel’s stepson as trustee, the fund also will care for a cat named Kiki and a rescue dog named Frosty.

Mandel ran a fundraising firm and amassed a $5.3m fortune. She died in June at age 69.

Other wills also have provided for pets. Hotel magnate Leona Helmsley left $12m to her dog, Trouble. A judge trimmed the bequest to $2m.

Queen gets a mug shot

Britain: The Queen will soon make history when she becomes the longest reigning British monarch — but on the day it will be business as usual for the head of state and her family.

On Wednesday, she will pass the record set by her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria who, Buckingham Palace has calculated, reigned for 23,226 days, 16 hours and 23 minutes.

A specially commissioned portrait by award winning sculptor Rebecca Newnham of Queen Elizabeth II, uses more than 950 mugs to celebrate the honour. The artwork by Newnham, who spent over three weeks making the 2m by 2.5m piece, using 952 mugs and 20 litres of paint, takes more than eight people to lift.

Game, set and crash

US: A drone buzzed over the court during a US Open tennis match in New York and crashed into an empty section of seats.

The black device flew through the Louis Armstrong Stadium near the end of a second-round match as 26th seed Flavia Pennetta of Italy was beating Monica Niculescu of Romania. It broke into pieces upon landing, and the match was briefly interrupted between points while police and fire department personnel went to look at it.

US Tennis Association spokesman Chris Widmaier said nobody was injured, but Pennetta said her initial reaction was that it might have been a bomb. “A little bit scary, I have to say. With everything going on in the world ... I thought, OK, it’s over. That’s how things happen.”

Bare necessities

Russia: Scientists researching changes in polar weather have been left trapped in their Russian base by at least five hungry polar bears looking for food.

The team at the north end of the island of Vaygach have put out an appeal to the Russian authorities asking for help.

They are only armed with a few flares and rubber bullets, as well as the usual tools required to survive on the Arctic tundra.

Judge rules on suspension

US: A Dunkin’ Donuts shop in Maine is offering free coffee for life to the federal judge who lifted New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s suspension.

The Sun Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1JToFhv ) that the shop in Lewiston put the offer on a sign outside the store after US district court Judge Richard Berman erased Brady’s four-game suspension over “Deflategate.”

The offer quickly spread over social media.

Berman ruled NFL commissioner Roger Goodell went too far in punishing the Super Bowl-winning quarterback. He says the suspension was “premised upon several significant legal deficiencies”.

If the judge ever leaves the bench, fans at Thursday night’s preseason game between the Patriots and New York Giants had another job in mind: Signs at Gillette Stadium urged Berman to run for president.


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