Thursday, June 28, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
Leadership: A Boston Globe profile of Mitt Romney touted his "emotion-free crisis management," such as on the family trip in 1983 when he strapped their dog, in a carrier, onto the roof of the car but then had to make an unscheduled stop to (calmly, of course) hose off the back window when nature called on Seamus.

Civilization in Decline
Oops, launch codes for the pre-emption of the emergency broadcast system were mistakenly clicked on in Illinois Tuesday morning, causing a few minutes of panic, and, of course, it was FEMA's fault (well, a FEMA contractor's) . . . . . The Arrangements Have Been Made: 6.7 billion people on the planet, but 9.5 million of ‘em (15 in every thousand) [CORRECTION: 15 in every 10,000] control $37 trillion (one-fourth of the total economy) . . . . . U-Haul has ticked off a lot of judges because of its habit of "losing" defective trailer and truck parts that are essential to lawsuits about accidents (on at least 11 occasions, says the L.A. Times, some in direct defiance of a court order to protect the parts) . . . . . Victoria McArthur wants a lot of money, and she wants it now, because Starburst candy doesn’t come with a warning that it’s too chewy . . . . . . Man, more of that British anti-husband stuff: 30 yrs after the divorce and a major one-shot property distribution, the ex-wife (the original strayer in the marriage) asked for more, and a judge gave her the equivalent of almost $400K . . . . . Some radio stations in Israel stopped playing songs by Mr. Eliyahu Faizkov, 20, because he sounds like a girl, and "according to many Orthodox rabbinic authorities," reported the Jerusalem Post, "Jewish law forbids men to listen to a female singer’s voice [because that’s similar to] viewing parts of a woman’s body that are normally kept covered."

The Human Condition Today
Even the homeless population has its profit centers, like Palm Springs, where, even if you’re a squeegee beggar, somebody’ll assume you have a lot of money (and rob you) . . . . . . . . . . A South Carolina rich dad complained that middle-school bullies shook down his kid many times during the year, with total demands running to, er, $35K . . . . . German Michael Werner swore to London’s Daily Mail that he’s been a "breatharian" (sunshine, fruit juice, and coffee only; no food) for 6 yrs now and is in great health [Ed.: Check under the floorboards! The Twinkies have to be somewhere!] . . . . . A Delta commuter flight made an unscheduled landing in Philadelphia because a 4-yr-old urchin was pitching a fit when she wasn’t served her apple juice fast enough (and no charges will be filed against her spawners!) . . . . . The father of a boy who was 9 when he was raped by his male nanny told the judge the perp’s got to go away for a long time because, as a predator, "He’s got game" . . . . . A real pro at Medicare/Medicaid fraud: Psychiatrist Ajit Trikha, in Belleville, Ill., worked more than 24 hrs a day on 76 occasions, and treated 1,267 patients in the U.S. during trips to Amsterdam, London, and Paris . . . . . Jesse Ramirez suffered severe brain injuries in a May 30 crash in Chandler, Ariz., and a few days later his wife said to pull the plug. Jesse’s other relatives got a court order turning everything back on, and 18 days later, Jesse regained consciousness. An anti-wife t-shirt: "Jesse, We Got Your Back."

Your Daily Loser
Arizona motorist Jenna Meyers, 22, text-messaging behind the wheel, somehow managed to run smack into another car, which was parked and (being a police car on call) had its emergency lights flashing.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Gordon Wood is finally going to trial for the 1995 murder of his girlfriend, and among the evidence is a statement from the morgue worker that Wood later walked in to view the body and matter-of-factly asked the attendant, "Do you mind if I look at her t*ts?"

NOTW Lite
Centers for Disease Control has found a way to excite adolescents about science: trading cards of gross diseases! . . . . . Apparently there was a police chase through a cornfield in a Dutch village, and here’s the remarkable overhead photo of afterward.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
will return tomorrow (perhaps)

NOTW, The Blog
From the awesome NY Times science writer, Natalie Angier, a roundabout hypothesis for the existence of cat ladies: The cat parasite Toxoplasma gondii not only messes with humans, it provokes cats (for the parasite’s own survival) to act in ways that make them insinuate themselves into people’s lives, which produces in women "warmth" and "self-assurance" (but produces in men different results). [Ed.: Alternative hypothesis: They’re nuts.]

Newsrangers: Bob Pert, Steve Miller, Larry Seltzer, Peter Hine.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.