Want to buy a luxury flat in Prague? It could cost you as much as 400 million crowns. Now you can place a bet on whether the US radar base is coming to the country. An artist defaces traffic lights and gets in trouble with the law and police hunt a man who is impersonating a waiter. And find out why Japanese rats love Czech beer.

Japanese scientists recently undertook an interesting experiment. They presented a number of rats with a choice between drinking water and Czech beer. The rats chose the beer. But here’s the bizarre twist. They then undertook a second experiment and exchanged the Czech beer for a non-Czech variety - the rats all flocked towards the water instead. What does all this mean? And, what was the point? Some Czech beer industry advocates have suggested that Czech beer contains more quality and organic ingredients, which the rats found favourable. One Czech beer expert even suggested that the same experiment should be repeated on humans! Volunteers can contact the Japanese Science Academy!

It’s pretty common knowledge that house prices in the historic centre of Prague are skyrocketing, but a recent story raised eyebrows even among industry experts. Prices have reached around 100,000 crowns per square meter in some parts, with a new luxury flat going for quadruple that price. So the total sum is a staggering 400,000,000 crowns or around 25 and a half million dollars. The apartment, which is being finalized is in Liliová road in Prague’s Malá Strana, comes with its own swimming pool, relaxation centre and entertainment club. But even such high prices still don’t compare with property prices in London and Paris. So, watch out, prices may still go even higher.

It seems that a lot of Czechs have views about whether or not the proposed US radar base should be placed on Czech soil. But now, some are able to take it a step further. A Czech bookmaker has started taking bets on whether the Czech Parliament will approve the planned base. Fortuna, the betting company involved, is giving both a yes and no vote exactly the same odds – 1.8 – 1, which many believe reflects the makeup of the current Parliament, in which the coalition has 100 out of 200 seats. But, Fortuna has stated that thousands of Czechs are not yet running to make a bet on this issue – sports bets are still by far the most popular.

For years, some have been wondering when the popular auction site eBay will hit the Czech Republic. Perhaps people here still don’t trust strangers to send them the items they pay for. Well, it seems that just as Czechs prefer their own search engine – Seznam to Google, now Czechs have got their own auction site too., is similar in format to eBay, and it looks like it is finding favour amongst hundreds of Czechs. Among the more bizarre items up for sale are an entire video rental shop, the bottom part of a women’s bathing costume, a toilet brush and seven rolls of multi-coloured cellotape. But it seems that the more wild items that can often be found on international auction sites, like a glass of water, potatoes that look like celebrities or heart-shaped cornflakes hasn’t yet caught on – but who knows? Maybe one day.

Czech police are warning restaurant and bar staff to be on the lookout for a rather cunning criminal. Apparently, a Mr David Cetla has been posing as a barman, getting a job, filling out all the paperwork, working hard and then running off with the takings after only one day. Apparently, the wanted criminal, who has been going under his real name and posing as an experienced barman has already run off with more than 100,000 crowns. The twenty-six year old man has been targeting businesses in southern Moravia, including the Moravian capital Brno. According to police, Mr Cetla could face a jail term-term of up to eight years – if the police manage to catch him.

Artist David Brudňák has appeared in court denying that he is the man responsible for defacing a number of traffic lights in Prague. According to police reports, 48 pedestrian traffic crossing lights were defaced with stencils of a green man having a drink and a red man urinating in the street. Other designs that appeared were a man hanging from a rope placed around his neck and a Christ-like figure hanging from a cross. But there is a twist – police believe that the man responsible is one Roman Týc – and they believe that this is a pseudonym used by well-known artist and “provocateur” David Brudňák. But Brudňák denies that he is the mystery culprit. Prosecutors say they have enough evidence to prove that Brudňák is indeed Roman Týc - they also insist that the affair is no laughing matter – apparently around 82,000 crowns worth of damage was caused, and Mr Brudňák, if found guilty, could face up to three years in jail.