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On the Light Side

June 3, 1985

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) _ O.C. McManus retired from the post office three years ago, but he’s still stuck on stamps.

The 71-year-old widower uses canceled stamps to create detailed mosaics of his family and other subjects - the result, he says, of an effort 25 years ago to just try something different. He now has 30 pictures in his collection.

As any artist knows, creation can be difficult.

McManus has to soak each stamp from its envelope, sort the paper squares by color and type, then cut and glue them in place, a months-long process.

″There are a million artists and most of them are better than I am,″ he said recently. ″I’ve always liked doing things that are a little different.″


VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) - Powell Janulus has a way with words - in 42 languages.

The 46-year-old linguist has talked himself into a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. Guinness officials have confirmed that he will be in the book’s next edition as the greatest living linguist, Janulus said.

His competence in 42 languages - including Macedonian, Armenian, Korean, Punjabi, Sinhalese, Cantonese, Croatian and Russian - puts him 14 ahead of the current Guinness titleholder, a United Nations translator.

Janulus said language is ″like a bowl of jelly. It developed helter --skelter and the big problem is people have tried to straitjacket it. Who needs grammar? You just need to communicate.″

Janulus was born in the Vancouver suburb of New Westminster, in a district he describes as a melting pot where many languages are spoken.

His Ukrainian mother and Lithuanian father spoke a half-dozen languages each. ″I thought it was all one language.″

Janulus, who operates the Geneva Language Institute in Vancouver, offering tutoring in scores of languages, said he doesn’t try to learn every word in every language, even English.

″I just have the ability to communicate with ordinary people about ordinary events,″ he said.

In addition to running the language institute, he serves as a court translator. To satisfy Guinness, he had to dig up the records of various trials he had translated in the 42 languages.

″When you’re in court with two East Indian lawyers, if your ability isn’t up to par you can’t fool them for very long.″

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