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A sin list on computer is a fact of modern life


IT IS MAY, and the kids will be out of school before we know it. It is our last chance to clean out closets and drawers and remove all the junk that has collected there since September, and to do it without the howls of protest that would follow us to Goodwill and to the curb on bulk-trash day.

While raking the debris out from under my daughter's bed, I discovered the following mismatched bits of information best filed under the heading: "True Facts."

* A computer program available to Polish Roman Catholics allows them to keep track of their sins for more efficient confessions. Sins are listed under Biblical commandments and according to their gravity, with a questionnaire asking whether they have been committed. Privacy in this case is protected not by a priest but by a password.

* Psychology Today reports that men have high regard for female bosses who give them good performance reviews. But in the case of an unfavorable review, a male employee will regard his female supervisor as less competent than a similarly critical male boss.

* Press guides produced by colleges and universities for men's and women's basketball teams are alike in every way except one: The women's press guides do not list a player's weight.

* According to Fortune magazine, teens make 40 percent more trips to the mall than other shoppers - and spend $85 million there.

* On the World Wide Web, this book is available: "How to Get the Women You Desire into Bed - A Down and Dirty Guide to Dating and Seduction for the Man Who's Fed Up With Being Mr. Nice Guy," by Ross Jeffries, who also offers seminars on something he calls "speed seduction."

If all else fails, he advises, sob uncontrollably and try to guilt-trip her into bed.

* A study conducted among Los Angeles teen-agers shows that boys who got free condoms in high school didn't have sex more often than other boys. But they were more likely to use condoms when they did have sex. The results were reported in the journal of the Alan Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit reproductive health organization in New York.

* Things every woman needs: a purse, a suitcase and an umbrella she is not ashamed to be seen carrying; a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill and a black lace bra; a friend who makes her laugh and one who lets her cry.

* Girls' Life magazine reports that 78 percent of the young readers it surveyed were happy with their bodies the way they are. However, the magazine also reported that 35 percent of the girls say their mothers are the source for their negative feelings about their bodies.

* "There are a lot of gods that have died. Nobody today is raising an altar to Jupiter or Juno or Mercury. Nobody today is worshiping the Egyptian sun god. And I think the reason they die is that the heart will never worship what the mind rejects." - the Right Rev. John Shelby Spong, the Episcopal bishop of Newark, N.J., and the senior prelate in the U.S. Episcopal Church.

* The Los Angeles Sparks of the Women's National Basketball Association made Allison Feaster, a Harvard graduate, its first pick. Feaster, who averaged an NCAA high 28.5 points per game, will report to training camp instead of a new job as a Wall Street equities analyst for Merrill Lynch.

* And the truest True Fact of all: School field trips are like childbirth: If any woman remembered how painful it was the first time, she would never do it again.

Pub Date: 5/17/98

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