Thursday, October 04, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
Self-Foot-Shooting, Corporate Edition: Delta Air Lines told Arizonan Mandy Bailey that she’ll have to buy two tickets for her conjoined, 1-yr-old twins (only because they’d require separate oxygen masks in an emergency) (and, presumably, the principle goes, jeez, if we give you a break, think of all the masses of infant conjoined twins who’ll be trying to ride on one ticket).

Civilization in Decline
Do you know anyone who has fallen big-time for a Nigerian scam (because the gov’t says they average 800 complaints a month from genuine rip-ees, and that’s just the lightly-embarrassed ones) (and turns out that the Netherlands is an even bigger base than Nigeria) . . . . . A hit-and-run driver in Arizona creamed a senior citizen returning from shopping, and by the time the ambulance arrived, the locals had picked his groceries clean (along with those of a Samaritan attending to him) . . . . . Yr Editor withholds judgment for right now, but watch this one: A federal judge in California certified class-action status for blind people to sue a big company because its website’s not accessible.

The Human Condition Today
A federal appeals court told Tony Lee Smith that, no, the prison you’re locked up in doesn’t have to let you build a fire pit for your religious purity [“Odinism,” which Yr Editor doubts was selected on the basis of unique ability to give Tony spiritual strength] . . . . . Stop and smell the powerful cliché: Alabamians complain that New Yorkers are sending them their caca, and it really stinks (but farmers love the deal because they get free fertilizer) . . . . . The Lord Mayor of Belfast, Northern Ireland, trying to accommodate snap-shotters at a photo-op, attempted to leapfrog a female official but accidentally kneed her in the back, sending her to the hospital (Bonus: She was dressed up as a tomato) . . . . . Secessionists are meeting today in Chattanooga, Tenn., surprisingly cooperatively, seeing as how one group is states’ rights Jesus people and the other group mostly from the progressive kingdom of Vermont . . . . . An “expert” pathologist, offering dramatic CSI-type testimony about a Toronto murder, confused telltale exonerating body markings with, er, a previous witness’s red hi-liter marks on the photo.

Your Daily Loser
Respectable southern California community activist Steven Myrick decided to moon a cop during a protest, and the arrest and subsequent collection of his DNA nailed him for an unsolved, 7-yr-old rape case that carries a life sentence.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Justice came swiftly for the now-late Jesse Martin, 54, whose longtime lady friend pumped two shots into him upon learning that he had a porn-CD stash (and the woman resembles a grown-up Nola Darling, the ballbuster in She’s Gotta Have It and nobody to mess with).

NOTW Lite
An Indonesian businessman has concluded that “bigamy” is the enemy of “polygamy,” but the court disagreed . . . . . This weekend, 100 churches will celebrate National Porn Sunday, which means only that they’ll target the sermons to deal with “the elephant in the pews.”

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
At last, a rival for the nearly totally dysfunctional District of Calamity school system: The Philadelphia School District commissioned a $700k management report in 2005 because it was unclear whether it even had written “job descriptions” or “annual review criteria,” but the final November 2006 report is, er, around here somewhere, and no, the Philadelphia Inquirer hasn’t found anyone who’s read any of it yet.

Update
Texas officials have decided not to prosecute Tammy Jean Warner for the 2004 death of her husband, of acute alcohol poisoning, absorbed via, well, enemas (which Tammy loaded for him because “[H]e loved his enemas” and had recipes for different types, including the sherry wine one that killed him) [NOTW 890, 2-27-2005].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Once again, Yr Editor finds himself jealous that so many (apparently) can spend so much time on a subject like “long hair on men” while other things, say, the brilliance of reporting the weird news, are lightly touched by the world’s eyeballs.

NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor is surely not one of those Creationists, but one genre of “science” stories has given me particular trouble over the years, with the latest example being this AP report of archaeological findings about the Incas. Archaeo’s seem to me the most unjustifiably confident of all scientists. They examined hair samples from the 16th century and concluded (well, with proper fudge words, but still . . .) the Incas fattened up their to-be-sacrificed children; they took them on pilgrimages before the ceremony; the pilgrimages lasted at least 12 months; and “we” now know what the chosen ones were eating and when they were separated from their normal existence. Predicted rebuttal: “Oh, Shepherd, you poor thing, this is all done by looking at changes in isotopes, and you simply don’t understand,” and of course, on that point, at least, they are 100 percent correct. And what, then, is the “news/weird” purpose of this little rant? Reporters and editors who know not one bit more about this magic than I do dutifully write these stories up, straight from the mouths of Dr. X and Professor Y. I’d put this gunk slightly more believable than that “created in seven days” stuff, but only slightly.

Newsrangers: Matt Mirapaul, Mark Neunder, Tom Barker, Bob Pert, Eric Gibbs, Stefan Palys
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.