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A short, masked pizza bandit and other things you may have missed this week

A raccoon climbs in a tree on Palmerston Blvd near Bloor Street in Toronto on Sept. 1, 2008

Kevin Van Paassen/The Globe and Mail

For many of us, Monday to Friday races by in a blur. We know it can be a struggle to delve beyond the big headlines and keep on top of all the interesting stories out there. We're here to lend a hand: In case you didn't see them the first time, a collection of stories you may have missed this week on

A short, masked pizza bandit

It may not have been a near-death experience, but it's the stuff that urbanites' nightmares are made of: A raccoon in the house. Reader Kerri Flanagan writes about how she survived a pizza-hungry raccoon's "attack," and why she's been keeping her gym bag close by ever since.

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The price of parenthood

How much does it cost to raise a child? $250,000, according to MoneySense writer Camilla Cornell. See the breakdown of her calculation, and how to figure out whether your wallet can withstand an addition to the family.

In defense of marshmallows that taste like fish

Emeril Lagasse. Rachael Ray. Guy Fieri. It may be fun for food snobs to hate on "celebrity chefs" for a perceived lack of culinary talent – and even funnier to chuckle at the brutal reviews their restaurants are given. But for this particular brand of "entertainer" chef, argues writer David Sax, "culinary talents (or lack thereof) are, essentially, irrelevant." Herewith, an argument in favour of the superstar chef.

I wish I was a baller

What was your dream job as a child? A survey conducted by LinkedIn found that 30 per cent of respondents said they either have their childhood dream job now, or are in a career related to their dream job. See what the most popular childhood dream jobs were.

A month of madness

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What is it like to lose your mind? When a young New York reporter suddenly found herself suffering from bouts of paranoia and hallucinations, she documented her experience in a new book titled Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness. She explains to Globe reporter Wency Leung what it was like to experience mental illness firsthand.

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