9/29 Morning Must Reads

Monday's five most interesting stories printed on wood pulp

Woman found murdered on her motorcycle feared for her life The Star Tribune has a powerful story about Natasha Waalen, 28, the woman found dead and strapped to her crashed motorcycle Sept. 19. Two days before authorities say she was beaten to death, Waalen told a co-worker that she was seeking a protection order against her boyfriend and that she "feared for her life". Authorities say her live-in boyfriend and his brother staged the crash.

Fourth cyclist dies in car collision Virginia (Ginny) Heuer, 51 was biking on Summit Avenue in St. Paul Saturday morning when she was hit by a sport utility vehicle and died later that day. She is the fourth cyclist to die after a car collision in recent months. According to the Star Tribune: "Heuer was on her morning ride Saturday when a sport-utility vehicle hit her on Summit near Snelling. Though she was wearing a helmet, she suffered severe head injuries and died seven hours later at Regions Hospital in St. Paul." The paper raises questions about the safety of bikers in the Twin Cities as more people jump on their bikes to commute and exercise.

Students love four-day school weeks! The MACCRAY school district is trying to save money, but students love their three-day weekend. Students now arrive 15 minutes earlier and stay 49 minutes longer than last year, but have Mondays off. Is it really news that students love going to school one less day a week? We could have written this story the second this idea was proposed.

Smoking ban turns one, we still love it Employees and customers: take a deep breath next time you are in a bar or restaurant and appreciate that wonderful fresh air the state gave you. The Pioneer Press looks back at the good and bad that came out of the law. We are just glad most of the major whining (besides that of heavy smokers) has toned down. Or maybe the papers have given up on listening to them.

Now you'll be forced to deal with the kids in the blue polos Welcome to the jungle of blue polos: Best Buy is trying to get exclusive retail to Gun N' Roses' "Chinese Democracy" album, which is being touted as one of the biggest, or biggest budgeted rock album of the year. The album would be out by the end of the year. Now you'll have to navigate a sea of overly bored and awkward Best Buy high school workers who are convinced you don't know what you want to buy or where to find a single thing in their story. We hope they still sell this CD online somewhere.

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