THE MARYLAND State Lottery Agency is missing a trick. The Illinois State Lottery now issues Lotto and other gaming tickets by vending machines in supermarkets.
You can stuff up to $20 into one of them. It makes no change.
The machine says you must be 18 or older to bet, and you are on your honor to be so.
Think of how much further into the pockets of the poor and the young the Illinois State Lottery reaches than the Maryland State Lottery Agency.
In Maryland, the lottery player is forced to buy his or her ticket not from an impersonal machine but in eye-to-eye contact with a human being whose store has obtained a precious lottery franchise from the state.
Think how much less bother it is for an ordinary individual to waste his or her money on gambling the Illinois way!
Short of holding a gun to your head, no more efficient method has been devised for a state to take money from its citizens.
* * * A JAIL'S BARBER has been shaving too much off the top, but not talking buzz cuts here.
Robin L. Smith, former-barber for Indiana's Marion County jail was arrested for splitting hairs. It wasn't that the sheriff's department didn't like details, rather it is the fact that Mr. Smith wasn't splitting enough hairs for the rates he charged the county government. He was arrested on charges of $3,000 worth of inflated billing.
L This wasn't the first time that Marion's lock-up was conned.
In 1988, ARA Services, which provides prisoners' meals, was found to have skimped inmates' meals by $70,000 worth of meat.
The incarceration count from the food scandal came in at two, plus a civil suit that cost ARA $125,000 in damages.
All this adds meaning to crime in the Big House.
* * * AN ILLINOIS professor of leisure who studies nude beaches has been stripped naked -- by his bosses.
The governing board of Western Illinois University voted to fire tenured professor George Harker because he'd rather travel and observe behavior on "clothing-optional" beaches than give final exams or attend faculty meetings.
The professor didn't care much for holding classes, posting office hours or returning from vacation in time to get back to work. It's more important, he claims, to travel to nude beaches and engage in his favorite academic pursuit.
Now he can take all the time he wants. He can traverse the world to determine the best topless and bottomless haunts. He'll just have to do so without the protective covering of taxpayers' paychecks.