NASA’s new wheels

The CD player stays: NASA is pushing ahead with its plans to put a nuclear-powered, SUV-sized rover on Mars that could cost $2 billion. Acknowledging tough economic times, NASA says it will cut expenses where it can and has ordered engineers to forego the sunroof and the cupholders.

Fair warning: Bird lovers may have noticed that the price of bird seed has increased. If you’re tempted to leave the feeders empty, remember to look up before you leave the house.

Run for the border: Here are two silver linings to the worldwide financial crisis: The price of crude oil continues to drop, as has the value of the Canadian dollar. The Loonie went from a high of $1.10 U.S. last November to 83 cents as of Friday. This should lower your costs for trips to the Vancouver Pharmasave for Tylenol 222s and Coffee Crisp bars.

More good news: The USS Lincoln, Momsen and Shoup, along with about 3,500 sailors, are due in Everett on Sunday, and area merchants hope they’re bringing their wallets. Let’s keep that news about the Canadian dollar to ourselves, shall we?

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