Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
LG Electronics of South Korea has filed a U.S. patent application for its, er, musical washing machine (speakers on the lid). An LG spokesman said, no, they don’t really have any consumer research on this. CNET.com is reported to have guessed that LG is trying to pre-empt the patent in case someone else tries to market one. Or, it could be just because LG Electronics thinks adding a spin-cycle backbeat improves the music.

Civilization in Decline
Two major political causes butt heads: A Scottish town council upped its carbon footprint by voting to leave the lights on all night at an unused school because, otherwise, trespassers might break in, hurt themselves, and sue.

The Human Condition Today
Add to the list of things that can produce good wood (besides Viagra and walnut extract [NOTW Daily, 6-5-2007]): the health drink Boost Plus, which plaintiff Christopher Woods of New York City said gave him a case of priapism that required surgery . . . . . Officials in Brighton, England, said they have the research to back up deploying extra police on full-moon nights, though the data are on crime rate and hospital admissions, not werewolf sightings . . . . . Home Depot fired four employees in Midwest City, Okla., for violating its don’t-challenge-shoplifters rule, a rule which many companies have, but this instance seems particularly inconsistent and harsh . . . . . Irony overload: James Berry was driving north on Highway 59 in Becker County, Minn., when he saw brother John Berry heading his way up ahead. So James reached for his cell phone to say hello to John, then lost control of his vehicle, and hit John’s truck head-on (but neither was seriously hurt).

NOTW Lite
Yr Editor has retired the genre of stories about breeding animals with the green jellyfish gene, to make them glow, so now comes Cornell scientists who manipulated the orange gene in orange cauliflower, but actually, this one has a purpose (helping foods to store beta-carotene) . . . . . Pvt Duncan Schneider of the Oregon Army Nat’l Guard (training for upcoming fun in Iraq) made the news because his platoon sergeant is, er, his mother-in-law.

Updates
(1) D. C. administrative law judge Roy Pearson (the guy suing the cleaner for $67M because they lost his pants) has graciously re-calculated what he thinks he’s owed, and it’s now $54M.
(2) Super Newsranger Emory Kimbrough hereby improves the science behind two NOTW Daily stories from last Saturday [NOTW Daily, 6-2-2007]: The "leopard-housecat" crossbreed is actually a "‘leopard-cat’-housecat," with the Asian leopard cat, itself, being a crossbreed of a housecat and a small wildcat. And "gum arabica" is not what makes the fizz in soft drinks; it’s what keeps the components of the soft drink from separating during storage.
(3) Because Yr Editor knows how much you folks rely on News of the Weird for updates on the Law of Body Searches, the Maryland Court of Appeals threw out the results of a butt search that was performed at the arrest scene, possibly in front of the suspect’s acquaintances, instead of at the stationhouse or in a police van (even though the appropriately named crack cocaine was, indeed, found).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
will return tomorrow

NOTW, The Blog
Schoolteacher Julie Amero, 40, is finally facing sentencing today in New London, Conn., and may be headed off to the slammer by the time you read this. She’s the woman who, in all probability, had her classroom laptop computer hijacked by a porn site and panicked. (Oh, she could be lying about that, but I think she has too many champions, who have known her too long and vouched for her too strongly, to have been punking us.) The police said she intentionally flashed the screen to her 12-yr-old students, and the jury bought the charges. To Yr Editor, this is of a piece with the 1980s-early 1990s day-care/satanic molestation scandals, i.e., never let anyone go free who "may possibly have harmed" a child’s sexual innocence ("may possibly have harmed," of course, being a new, selective, American standard of proof, replacing "beyond a reasonable doubt"). [UPDATE: The judge ordered a new trial. Whaddya know!]

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Joe Littrell, Dave Null.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.