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Morning links: Lawn outlaws, poop bags and more


Lawn-busters: Last week, we linked to a KTLA report on a couple in Orange facing fines for ripping out their lawn, replacing it with low-water plants and wood chips and defying a city ordinance that required at least 40% of their frontyard to be landscaped with live plants. Amina Khan has some additional details in the case. My favorite line in the article is the last:

Meanwhile, the couple said they had reduced their water usage from 299,221 gallons in 2007 to 58,348 gallons in 2009.

Human poop bags: Buried in the New York Times on Tuesday is a story about a single-use bag "toilet" containing urea crystals that turns feces into pathogen-free fertilizer. The invention holds much potential in developing countries. The bag is called the Peepoo, and it's made by the Peepoople. Stop giggling.

Parenting: Sandy Banks' column on Tuesday recounts her experience as the official word pronouncer of the Los Angeles County Regional Spelling Bee. Writes Banks:

One mother challenged my rendition of a Japanese word misspelled by her son. I said koh-en rather than koh-ahn, she said. One means park, the other is a paradox used in Zen Buddhism meditation. Later, a father leapt from his front-row seat to protest a procedural point, launching a minor imbroglio. The parents were polite but vibrating from accumulated angst. And the experience left me shaken a bit, wondering whether we overzealous parents are warping our dutiful kids.

The Times is expanding its coverage of modern parenting and family-life issues. Here's a quick look at some recent articles by other columnists.

-- Craig Nakano

Photo credit: Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

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I read this while I was not paying attention in class, and I absolutely giggled aloud (and marveled!) at the PeePoople bag. How awesome it must be to have fun with themselves and create something so innovated and necessary for so many parts of the world!


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