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US-LIFE Summary

Sep 23, 2011, 8:20 p.m.

Veteran U.S. swimmer starts Cuba-Florida trek

HAVANA (Reuters) - U.S. long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad jumped feet first into Cuba's azure waters on Friday in her latest attempt to become the first person to swim from the communist island to Florida without a shark cage. Nyad, 62, tried to make the 103-mile (166-km) crossing of the Florida Straits last month but was thwarted by asthma, shoulder pain and heavy seas.

Travel Picks: Top 10 Oktoberfests outside Germany

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Not every Oktoberfest reveler will know they're toasting the 19th-century marriage of a Bavarian crown prince as they guzzle beer and bratwurst for two weeks each autumn. But that's where the tradition started and, though its roots are still in Munich, the entire world has since joined in on the celebrations.

Arkansas police want to talk to man about toe sucking

LITTLE ROCK, Ark (Reuters) - Arkansas police want to talk to a man who came to be known as the Toe Suck Fairy in the 1990s, following a fresh spate of incidents by an assailant who approached women seeking to suck their toes. Police said they hoped the man could help yield clues into recent incidents linked to toe sucking in Conway, Arkansas, but stopped short of calling him a suspect in the case.

Auction for Haiti raises nearly $14 million

NEW YORK (Reuters) - An art auction featuring works by Jeff Koons, Jasper Johns and Chuck Close for relief efforts in Haiti raised nearly $14 million and set records for four artists, according to Christie's. The sale of 27 works by 26 contemporary artists exceeded its pre-sale expectation of $10 million. All of the proceeds will go toward Haitian relief such as education and health care.

Management Tip of the Day: Handling raise requests

BOSTON (Reuters Life!) - "Can I have a raise?" Five little words can cause a lot of stress and frustration, especially in companies with no formal compensation policy, says Harvard Business Review. The Management Tip of the Day offers quick, practical management tips and ideas from Harvard Business Review and HBR.org (http:\\www.hbr.org). Any opinions expressed are not endorsed by Reuters.

Books: Obama, a campaigner, learning to lead

NEW YORK (Reuters) - "The presidency is not something that lends itself to on-the-job-training," Vice-President Joe Biden famously quipped of his future running mate in 2007. That's exactly what President Barack Obama did in his first two years of office, according to a controversial new book by Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Ron Suskind.

Pope meets abuse victims during German trip

ERFURT, Germany (Reuters) - Pope Benedict held a surprise meeting on Friday with victims of clerical sexual abuse and expressed his deep regret for their suffering, saying the church was committed to the protection of children, the Vatican said. The private meeting came on the second day of Benedict's four-day trip to Germany, where record numbers of Catholics have officially left the faith in protest at clerical abuse, and where the Church faces some 600 requests for compensation.

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