Monday, August 13, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
Comedy is easy; love is hard: The director of Love Demonstrated Ministries was charged with ordering a 15-yr-old girl at its boot camp tied up and dragged on her stomach behind a van because of inadequate running ability. The camp, near Corpus Christi, Tex., is presumably for Christianity-challenged kids having trouble with Commandment V.

Civilization in Decline
More Texas Justice: It’s the only state that’ll put you to death for just being associated with a murder, and Kenneth Foster is scheduled to pay the price on August 30 [from The Nation] . . . . . Alabamians (sometimes late to modernity) are just now finding out the power of that teachers’-union-inspired law they passed; "fired" teachers, even if the charge is rape, stay on the payroll, with raises, right on through the long due-process phase . . . . . A guy bought a New York City townhouse that is less than 26 ft wide for, er, $33 million . . . . . Two Boston entrepreneurs, just in time for the school year, are set to introduce the $175 bullet-proof backpack . . . . . The largest bank in the make-believe Second Life sorta froze its depositors’ money, but it wasn’t over sub-prime mortgages; the game banned gambling in SL because the FBI said it would enforce (in the play-like world) a 2006 federal law criminalizing gamblers’ money-changers, and lots of SL’ers ran for the exits . . . . . And speaking of SL, the Wall Street Journal did a fascinating profile of a piece of mediocrity named Ric Hoogestraat (a call-center operator), who of course is transformed into a superstar in SL and recently got married, to the chagrin of Sue Hoogestraat, the real wife ("You try to talk to [Ric] or bring [him] a drink, and [he’ll] be having sex with a cartoon"). [free link to Yahoo version]

The Human Condition Today
Least Competent Organization: A Siberian space exhibition foundation reported the theft of a, er, 6,000-lb. meteorite from out in the yard . . . . . The Washington Post profiled an Albanian journalist studying that country’s tribal "sworn virgins" deal, where a woman goes through a ritual and swears off you-know-what but then will be allowed to live as a man (benefit: respect!) (and she says there are maybe 40 left in the country).

Your Daily Loser
Barbara Joyner, 59, charged with robbing a Bank of America near Jacksonville, Fla., admitted that the draft holdup notes in her purse were hers, but denied (despite witnesses) that she was the robber, but then disclosed that the notes were "practic[e]," but then wouldn’t say practice for what.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Police in Paris, Frawnts, detained a 50-yr-old man, accused of sprinkling itching powder into the drawers of an 11-yr-old girl, supposedly to watch her scratch. That’s not necessarily sexual, but in a search of his home, police did find a lot of child porn.

NOTW Lite
There are no cars in shepherding! (except by this Greek, who is getting on in years and has trained his sheep to follow his exhaust) . . . . . A Toronto Humane Society activist is in trouble because, after rescuing a Rottweiler from a hot car, he cuffed the owner to the car (to detain him for police, but hostile pet-lovers got to him first and administered a beatdown) . . . . . Ever see a 15-ton steel silo resting on top of a Suburu? A Vancouver, Wash., accident provoked this photo . . . . . United Arab Emirates is already the world’s biggest per-capita energy user, and the Chillout bar/restaurant (2,400 square ft of 21-degree (F) temperature, with everything made of ice) won’t help things, and it’s $17 for one nonalcoholic drink and (with new meaning) cover charge.

Updates
Those 3 crooked fen-phen lawyers (charged by the feds with ripping off $64m of a settlement that ought to have gone to the victims) [NOTW M002, 4-22-2007], annoyed the federal judge so much with their delaying tactics that he revoked their bail and, unless he changes his mind or is overruled, will sit in jail until all their delays run their course and the trial can start, and you might have heard the sputtering of aghastness last Friday afternoon coming from that Kentucky courtroom.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
This guy’s commercial/philosophical site has Yr Editor’s fundamentals written all over it, so do take a look. Everything Oprah, and the The Secret lady, and in fact, every self-helper on the market told you, is wrong. Everything is much, much worse. And you knew that. You just didn't have the artwork to express it.

NOTW, The Blog
Something called the North Denver News, picked up by a blog at the well-regarded ZDNet, reported that a guy had had his thumbs surgically altered so he could text faster on his handhelds. The newspaper, itself, looks legit enough (the website, that is), but the story was written in non-journalism style, and the surgeon’s name didn’t check out, either. A couple of Snopes.com commentors picked up on its unlikelihood. Yr Editor thought it was merely a deathbed tribute to the passing of Weekly World News. If it turns out to be true, it means Yr Editor has learned nothing in 19 yrs in this business. [UPDATE: The editor finally labeled the story satire.]

Newsrangers: Scott Langill, Eli Christman, Tom Barker, Mindy Cohen, Kathryn Wood.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.