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The Globe and Mail

Did the famous Wheel of Fortune contestant just get lucky?

Morning Radar: Three things we're talking about this morning:

Oh what a feeling: A New York magazine editor is still basking in her Wheel of Fortune feat after accomplishing what host Pat Sajak called the "most amazing puzzle solve we've ever had."

On the show, Caitlin Burke got first guess on a 27-letter puzzle, and asked for an L. "Can I solve it?" she asked, to a flummoxed Mr. Sajak. The answer: "I've got a good feeling about this." earning her a instant trip to the Caribbean, as well as more than $53,000 for participating on the show.

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Her mom told reporters she's always been good at solving puzzles. Her accomplishment has led some internet commentators to suggest a fix is in (one morning show even stumped her by giving her another puzzle with only an L ), but it's more fun to believe that bubbly Ms. Burke just got lucky.

What's the luckiest thing that's ever happened to you? Share your stories in the comment field below

Busy bee: And you thought your life was hectic. Just a few days after going on Facebook, the Queen's followers have quickly grown to 200,000. But the main feature of the website isn't to gain popularity (in fact, you can't even befriend Her Majesty), it's to tracking just what the Queen's up to every day - an exhausting stream of receptions and commemorations.

And while there's no poking the monarch, that hasn't stopped a few Facebook fans (mostly "foreigners" one British media site huffed) at throwing some snide insults, like calling the Queen a "parasite" or the royal family "Britain's biggest benefits scrongers." The slags were quickly excised from the site. And really, that's one impressive social calendar for an 84 year old!

My word: A new study has found that recommendation letters for women may not actually work - they might cost you the job.

In a study funded by the National Science Foundation in the United States, researchers analyzed 624 letters of recommendation for 194 applicants hoping to land faculty positions.

They found a gender bias in the letters, with female applicants being described in more warm and fizzy terms, such as "helpful, kind, nurturing" and with behaviours such as helping others and maintaining relationships.

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Men, on the other hand, were more often described as "aggressive, intellectual, and outspoken," and with behaviours such as taking initiative.

What's more, the letters often contained what the researchers suggested cast doubt on a woman's qualifications but saying things like, "She might make an excellent leader."

When the letters were evaluated anonymously (and without any gender reference, and controlling for qualification differences) by senior faculty - you guessed it - the male language letters got the highest ratings - and therefore, the researchers concluded, were the most likely to land the applicant the job.

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About the Author

Erin Anderssen writes about mental health, social policy and family issues. More

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