Look . . . It's a Bird
* SpaceShipOne, the first privately built and piloted vehicle to reach space, will soar to new heights today when it goes on display at the National Air and Space Museum on the Mall.
The 3,000-pound spacecraft will hang from the ceiling near the Spirit of St. Louis, the plane in which Charles Lindbergh in 1927 made the first solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic Ocean. SpaceShipOne made three space trips last year to an altitude of more than 62 miles.
. . . It's a Giraffe
* Charles Foley searched for a legendary white giraffe in the forests of Tanzania for 12 years.
The Wildlife Conservation Society researcher first heard the tale in 1993 when he began working at Tarangire National Park. He kept an eye out for the giraffe, but with no new reports after 1994, he thought it had died.
While flying over the park this summer, though, Foley noticed a distant white spot and took a photo. It was a white giraffe, but Foley doesn't think it's the one from 1993. And since it has small dark splotches, it's likely not a pure albino either.
. . . It's a Chimp
* Ai Ai the chimp has finally kicked the habit.
Ai Ai started smoking 16 years ago when her mate died.
Now 27 and in declining health at a zoo in China, she was lured away from cigarettes with tastier food and more activity, including "a walk after breakfast, a music session after lunch and gym after dinner," news reports said.
She also likes listening to pop music with earphones.
. . . It's a Boy!
* A new hurricane blew across the Gulf of Mexico yesterday. This one had a boy's name.
Hurricane Stan smacked into Mexico after killing at least 35 people in Central America over the weekend.
By the time it hit Mexico, however, it was a relatively mild Category 1 storm.
Stan is the 18th named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season. Next up: Tammy.
A white giraffe is spotted in Tanzania.