Answers to Last Week's News Quiz

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1. A couple dozen reality TV hopefuls descended on Hayward's Southland Mall last weekend dressed as what?

Superheroes. The Sci Fi Channel was holding auditions for its upcoming show Who Wants to Be a Superhero?

2. A trial began last Monday pitting a private school against Alameda County, which has refused the school's request to build a new high school campus in semirural Palomares Canyon near Castro Valley. In what could be a nationally watched test case, the school is invoking a recent federal law, claiming the county is discriminating against it in what way?

Based on religion. As first reported in-depth in the Express, the Christian school is invoking the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, which says local governments cannot regulate land so as to impinge on free practice of religion.

3. The Unification Church, aka the Moonies, agreed last week to pay $500,000 to avoid prosecution for the illegal activities of its Bay Area pastor, Kevin Thompson, whose San Leandro church was involved in what?

Poaching baby leopard sharks from San Francisco Bay. The story was first reported by the Express, which recently obtained audio of Thompson telling parishioners that he had told supreme church leader Rev. Sun Myung Moon about the operation, and that Moon had encouraged him to ramp it up.

4. Oakland-based Kaiser Permanente last week announced a research project that would span decades and investigate the causes of diseases such as Alzheimer's and cancer. It is asking two million Northern California members to participate in the survey and agree to provide samples of what?

DNA. The study will look at how genetic and environmental factors combine to affect a person's health.

5. What did Berkeley-based Publishers Group West do recently that may threaten the existence of more than 150 small publishers across the nation?

File for bankruptcy. For many small publishers around the Bay Area and elsewhere, the distributor was their only way of getting into stores, not to mention, PGW owes many of them money that may prove difficult to recover.

6. The Oakland Tribune noted this week that former A's manager Tony La Russa now manages a shelter in Walnut Creek. What kind of shelter?

A shelter for dogs and cats. And here we thought La Russa was such a tough guy.

7. Several Oakland city workers have appealed their supervisor's decision to remove what from a workplace bulletin board?

A flier construed by co-workers as antigay. They say they posted it in response to the work e-mail system being used to promote a National Coming Out Day rally.

8. What did star pitcher Barry Zito bring to the Giants training camp this week?

A new throwing style.

9. What has UC Berkeley threatened to do in order to thwart the tree-sitters in the grove of oak trees outside Memorial Stadium?

Fence off the grove.

10. The Chronicle reporters who exposed the BALCO steroid scandal were facing prison time for refusing to reveal their source for leaked grand jury testimony. Now, they may be off the hook. Why?

A defense attorney in the BALCO case has come forward as a source of the leak.

Number of Correct Answers 8-10: You should really exercise more. 5-7: You just earned your right to vote. 2-4: Are you a big Jon Stewart fan? Just a guess. 0-1: We've got a bridge you might be interested in.

Got a question for the next news quiz? Send it to this guy: Michael Mechanic with Quiz Question in the subject line.

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