Monday, April 30, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
Here’s what we know: Ronnie Turner, 44, has been arrested in Elkton, Ky., and charged with placing quarter-ounce bags of marijuana on as many as 47 car windshields at three churches, with notes attached referring to "Native American rights" and "peace poles." We also know (said Turner) that God told him to do it. What we don’t know: what God had in mind.

Civilization in Decline
Sony used the standard big-corporation defense when its promotional magazine, touting the God Of War II game for PS2, staged a stunt featuring a decapitated goat, with party guests reaching inside its still-warm carcass to pull out and eat offal (substituting for intestines) ("standard defense": "It has come to our attention that" and now that we know about it, we are, of course, appalled) . . . . . A Univ. of Florida professor denounced pesticide runoffs into the state’s lakes and rivers by invoking the prospect of . . tranny gators! . . . . The free market works (in some places, like in California): If you’re ordered to jail for certain minor offenses, several cities’ lockups will let you book a comfortable cell for $75 to $127 a day . . . . . The Senate Finance Committee found that nearly 1 in 10 employees of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights owes back federal taxes, by far the worst compliance rate for federal agencies.

The Human Condition Today
Can’t Possibly Be True: A former St. Louis charity matron, age 60, will serve 37 months for possessing child porn . . . . . A letter carrier for a rural route in northwest Indiana is in critical condition after being creamed by a semi, owing perhaps to the unwritten but standard operating procedure that carriers who use their own cars should drive while seated on the passenger side . . . . . London’s Guardian has an interview with a deaf, punk, female Muslim playwright, one of many near-nihilists influenced by the over-the-top novel The Taqwacores about a punk Muslim subculture.

Your Daily Loser
An unidentified man tried to rob a Subway sandwich shop in Champaign, Ill., on Thursday night, but despite two demands for money, the employees refused to take him seriously, and according to a police spokeswoman, he started crying and walked out.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Daniel Langi was spotted at a girls’ indoor volleyball tournament in Reno, Nev., hiding behind a curtain and engaging in "unspecified lewd behavior," according to the Gazette Journal.

NOTW Lite
A Belgian open-air restaurant hanging 150-ft high from a crane, with 15-20 diners seated at a table with chef and waiters in the middle [with photos!] . . . . . A Japanese company, using Toyama Univ. research, developed a tiny patch for the paw of a dog or cat to register how much stress it’s under (Seriously) . . . . . In a desolate region of Saudi Arabia, 250 men entered 1,500 camels in a beauty contest ("The nose should be long and droop down, that’s more beautiful"; "The ears should stand back, and the neck should be long. The hump should be high, but slightly to the back") . . . . . Those anorexic-looking Japanese super-eaters who win all the U.S. eating contests: They have abnormally-large stomachs, according to MRIs.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
A Washington Post investigation of the $854M in cash and oil offered to the U.S. by generous nations during Hurricane Katrina rescue-and-mop-up found that all except $40M was left on the table unclaimed, and that in-kind gifts of drugs from Italy were left to spoil, among other disastrous results. Heckuva-Job Brownie wasn’t personally involved, but apparently he personified a level of general multi-agency incompetence heretofore underappreciated.

Update
Writing-while-Asian high-schooler Allen Lee, whose hardly-vicious creative-writing project Yr Editor linked to [NOTW Daily, 4-28-2007], has now had his previously-made contract to enter to Marine Corps torn up (and since the "criminal" charge pending is only a misdemeanor, it must mean the USMC believes he’s too mean to be a Marine).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
which was to return today, may return tomorrow (if the actual news load gets lighter)

NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor is going to start listing first contributors of stories used in NOTW Daily, with a couple of conditions: About half of the stuff I refer to I find on my own, and being a one-man show, I just can’t be diverted to remember who sent what that I already have. Second, it’s possible that I might not use something for NOTW Daily but still keep it on hand for the NOTW column (because of my selection criteria, which I’m too bored to set out here). I of course enjoy getting reader news tips, but a story that appears front-and-center on any major news site is surely already known to me.
Newsrangers: Steve Miller, David Oldridge, Michael Ravnitzky, Jason Fleming, Aaron Geiger, and Paul Music.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Saturday’s 5-Star Special
Tinfoil beanies are so-o-o 20th century. If you want to be completely protected from all the electromagnetic fields of the 21st century, you’ll have to wear beekeeper headgear like this (and, of course, line your home with tinfoil-encased wallpaper). Science is not down with Electrosensitivity as a condition yet, but no doctor, herbalist, etc., can tell this woman why she got sick so often before she retrofitted her house and herself.

Civilization in Decline
It "may be the last legal form of sex discrimination in the United States, approved year after year by lawmakers" [and Yr Editor sez, Guess what it is! When you give up, search the rest of today's post for the most nonsensical link you can find and click it] . . . . . The first "enemy combatant" who is a U.S. citizen arrested on U.S. soil (Jose Padilla), but who was subsequently upgraded from "enemy combatant" to "citizen entitled to Constitutional rights," faces trial next month over nefarious plans expressed in recorded, coded telephone calls, like the one about paying $3,500 for a zucchini.

The Human Condition Today
A Japanese man was injured with bruises, which he acquired when an 18-yr-old college student took The Only Way Out off of a nine-story building and landed on his noggin . . . . . Tiffany Weaver made up ID from a Baltimore lawyer in order to sneak into the city jail and get intimate with her boyfriend, but she denies she had sex with him (Her lawyer: "There was never any sexual intercourse. There was no thrusting whatsoever.")

Your Daily Loser
Malcolm Barnes, 20, might go down big for vehicular manslaughter, which was allegedly provoked by too much of his drug of choice, er, 3M Dust Remover.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
A 48-yr-old church organist in Teeside, England, was found dead in his home, naked, in the fetal position, inside a large plastic bag that had a vacuum cleaner attached to it. Police believe he was an asphyxer getting off at having the air sucked out of the bag.

NOTW Lite
A London pub, trying to work around the imminent no-smoking rules, has asked the Embassy of Peru to designate it as a consulate (and therefore exempt from the rules).

Updates
Here’s more on the "Writing While Asian" arrestee Allen Lee [NOTW Daily, 4-27-2007], including the text of his actual essay that criminally disturbed his teacher and caused Dick Cheney to dress like a nurse . . . . . And here’s more on our boy Jose de Jesus (No Such Thing As Sin) Miranda [NOTW Daily, 4-25-2007], from BoingBoing.net.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
will return on Monday

NOTW, The Blog
The poodle/sheep story from yesterday turned out to be evidence-less, according to sleuthing by Snopes.com (and since then Updated on NOTW Daily). And to show you that Yr Editor, too, is vigilant about obvious hoaxes, I am not running this story in yesterday’s The Scotsman, which had this nut graf: "A dozen top chefs–including five with Michelin stars–have been nominated in the 11th annual Scottish Chef of the Year Award." Top chefs? Scotland? I mean, come on, Yr Editor wasn’t born yesterday!
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
The FBI in Ohio wants the public’s help in finding the man [Ed.: Well, that’s an assumption] who has mailed letters to various news outlets and college athletic officials, threatening random citizens with harm because TV coverage of cheerleaders focuses too much on their covered-up areas. [He needs skin!] An FBI spokesman said the threat was shrugged off at first, but then a second batch of letters showed up last winter, e.g., a warning that a TV producer who de-emphasized skin could cause "88 people to be assaulted and shot at."

Civilization in Decline
Speaking of threats, police in Cary, Ill., arrested a straight-A Asian high school student who had turned in a paper for creative writing class that managed to "disturb" his teacher (old: "driving while black"; new: "writing while Asian," said NOTW newsranger Emory Kimbrough) . . . . . It’s baa-aack! Schoolkids and Satanic sex abuse! It’s in Italy this time, but no matter: Believe the children because they’d never make up stuff about that! . . . . . 419'ers graduate to the Big Stage: Widespread evidence of fraud in last weekend’s Nigerian elections included one decision to award the ruling PDP a senate seat in a race in which it didn’t field a candidate.

The Human Condition Today
Only in Nova Scotia: William Crouse, creamed in his pickup truck by a passing train, thinks it must be the train's fault . . . . . Yesterday’s Cat Fights: At their kids’ elementary school in Gary, Ind., two long-feuding women squared off with, respectively, a pocket knife and a tire iron, and two women in the same car on I-694 in a Minneapolis suburb just couldn’t give it a rest, and the driver stopped right in the middle of the highway, and the two got out and started slugging . . . . . And yesterday’s, er, male Cat Fight: In a Washington state town, fire commissioners Allen Yanity, 71, and Jim Bosch, 64, are continuing to despise each other, especially after Tuesday’s meeting, when Yanity clobbered Bosch on the head with a coffee mug . . . . . Latest episode of celebrity "don’t you know who I am?": And not even a celebrity, but just a member of the Massachusetts Governor’s Council, who was irate because a beauty shop wouldn’t take her check (and who wields a mean curling iron) . . . . . Readers’ Choice: Washington, D.C., lawyer (and administrative judge) Roy Pearson filed a lawsuit against Custom Cleaners (for losing his to-be-altered pants) for, uh, $65,462,500.00.

Your Daily Losers
Aaron Hudgins, 26, and Ruan Rucker, 24, were rescued after being trapped and missing for almost 24 hrs inside a mine in Kanawha County, W.Va. After the rescue, they were immediately arrested, in that the only reason they were there was to steal copper.

NOTW Lite
There’s something in the folklore of Chongqing municipality in China that says women rule, so the tourist bureau is turning a district into "women’s town," where women are gods and men whimper . . . . . A Japanese company is said to have sold cut-rate poodles to thousands of starry-eyed Japanese buyers (saving them over $1,000 each), who only later found out they were just small sheep. [UPDATE: Snopes.com pretty well put the nail in this one as an empty story, and you'll notice the shakiness of Yr Editor's own initial conviction, i.e., "is said to have"].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
"My name is Ulrich Haarbürste and I like to write stories about Roy Orbison being wrapped up in cling-film. If you have written any stories about Roy being completely wrapped in clingfilm please send them to me and I may put them up on the site. If you have a site with stories about other pop stars being wrapped in cling-film mail me and we can exchange links."
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
OK, see, you’re the police, and you have a warrant to search this woman, but it’s not a body-cavity warrant, just a basic search for meth, and in the course of the search, a bag of meth is seen, er, slightly protruding from a body cavity, and a cop pulls it out. Can it be used as evidence? At an Arizona appeals court oral argument, the prosecutor warns: "Where does the butt end and the anus begin? The buttocks is just the bell end of the trumpet, and I don’t think that you [judges], for constitutional reasons, want to go there [declare the search illegal]."

Civilization in Decline
At a Republican caucus of Montana state legislators (with NBC cameras rolling), House majority leader Michael Lange called the Democratic governor an "S.O.B.," said he could "go to hell" and that as for the governor’s tax-relief plan, he could "stick it up his ass" (but later, during House proceedings, Lange said, "I certainly meant no offense").

The Human Condition Today
Another fatal gas-pedal/brake-pedal/whatever? case, but the 84-yr-old was driving a golf cart . . . . . People Different From Us: There’s Shirley Weidt, of Sheridan, Wyo., who keeps her pet goat not in a pen but in her minivan (Bonus: She keeps the car clean!), and then there’s this lady, a mother of 3 who left her husband for a 16-yr-old stud and now is ticked off that the kid’s getting it on the side from his teacher.

Your Daily Loser
Eric Cunningham, 18, was arrested and charged with robbing a gas station at gunpoint in Orlando. Crimestoppers tip: He forgot to take his gun case with him as he fled, which contained his receipt for the gun, made out to "Eric Cunningham."

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Ronald Baker, 44, was sentenced to 10 yrs in prison for a 2005 incident when he was caught, sitting on the floor of the chapel of St. Louis’s Lambert Field airport, looking at his ample collection of child porn on his laptop.

NOTW Lite
At England’s Warwick University, researchers develop artificial snot (well, "mucus") because they found that actual mucus on actual nose receptors aids scent-differentiation, and they think lab-made mucus will help their lab-made scent-differentiators . . . . . Also in England, a 2½-yr-old, showing that he pretty much wasn’t taking his toilet-training seriously, was taken to a fire station so that emergency personnel could remove the toilet seat from around his head . . . . . The director of the Feline Health Center at Cornell Univ. was killed when he swerved his motorcycle to avoid a, uh, cat . . . . . Last words of the now-departed James Filiaggi (from Ohio’s death row): "I’m going to be busy [in, what, heaven?] getting the [Cleveland] Browns to the Super Bowl, working magic."

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Thankfully, there is a site for pictures of "women in big headphones, earmuffs, and helicopter headsets," even though they’re de-emphasizing the raw sexuality (in favor of mere "aesthetic appreciation").

NOTW, The Blog
A story out of West Palm Beach, Fla., has Roger Bean arrested for practicing denture-fitting out of a metal garage attached to his mobile home, and of course it was unhygienic, and of course he’s not licensed (except perhaps in Texas, as he had a certificate-like thing ordaining him as a "denturist"). So of course any patient who goes to Bean is an idiot . . except, maybe not. He apparently has repeat and word-of-mouth business, so we can infer he’s at least adequate at what he does. And he charges $200 or less for a full set (versus $2,000 or more by state-licensed people with offices in regular buildings). Sheriff’s detectives said only that they received an anonymous tip, not necessarily a complaint. Yr Editor is not ready yet to dump on Roger Bean.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
A political party has formed in northern India, literally, "Association of the Dead," to fight for oppressed dead people, i.e., people who are dead to the gov’t but probably still alive. The problem is that your rivals or enemies will file the paperwork about your death if they think they can get some benefit from it (such as inheriting your land), and then you’ll spend the rest of your life trying to prove that you’re still alive.

Civilization in Decline
From London’s Evening Standard, a supposedly typical SAT-type math question for Chinese high-schoolers, compared to one for British high-schoolers (and bonus points if you even understand the China-test question) . . . . . In Toledo last week, super-intelligent Americans at the minor-league baseball game booed Shin-Soo Choo on general (i.e., Va. Tech) principles . . . . . British health-care (cont’d): If you develop "wet age-related macular degeneration," one of your eyes has to go before treatment is on the house for the other one . . . . . According to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel investigations, Wisconsin DMV, which used to make you wait 3 weeks for license plates, had a new computer system installed (at double the promised price), and now, ta-daaaa, a 7-week wait.

The Human Condition Today
At St. Joseph’s Cemetery in suburban NYC, the caretaker found four small bags in a grave, each containing one smoked fish and photos of people, but missing was any handy explanation of WTH is going on . . . . . At an exotic animal park in the Florida panhandle, a woman was killed when a camel kicked her, and then sat on her . . . . . Awesome: Brit James Light got a suspended sentence for his 7-yr scheme as an employee of a boatmaker in which he smuggled out over £55,000 worth of parts, one by one, to build his own luxury yacht.

Your Daily Loser
Jazrahel King, 29, was arrested in Norwalk, Conn., when he tried to use as a car trade-in the very Jeep that he had heisted from that very dealer several weeks earlier (which still had the temporary plate the dealer had put on it).

NOTW Lite
Readers’ Choice: Here’s the guy who dropped into a pizza restaurant in central London, jumped up on a table, and administered a self-penectomy . . . . . And here’s the guy who apparently (it was from Germany’s Bild) camped overnight in the warm ATM vestibule at a bank in Wiesenburg, and brought his horse in with him [bonus: photo].

Updates
In NOTW Daily [3-8-2007] (and in the next News of the Weird column, debuting 4-29-2007), readers learned (will learn) about Jose de Jesus Miranda, the 666-tattooed self-described "second coming" antichrist who has built a nice following in the Americas based on rejection of the concept of sin. However, 3 countries so far have barred him based on his severe anti-Catholicism, including Guatemala, where he was scheduled to preach last Friday (which, notwithstanding the good press that "December 25" gets, is his b-day). Well, he chickened out, in favor of teleconferencing in his holy message . . . . . And FYI, Yale chickened out of its toy-weapons-only policy in theater plays [NOTW Daily, 4-23-2007] (to a case-by-case evaluation), and one of yesterday’s plywood fliers in Texas, er, died of his injuries.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
If you expect to have people worship you after your death, and a mere photograph insufficiently suggests your greatness, there is, really, only one place to go on planet Earth for your mummification: Summum, in Salt Lake City.

NOTW, The Blog
Cute item from the current Sports Illustrated (not online, I don’t think): In 1954, Kurt Vonnegut sought an entry-level writing job at SI, though he knew nothing about any sport, and was assigned to write a caption about a horse that jumped the rail at Aqueduct race track. He pondered and pondered, then wrote one line and walked out the door, forever. The line: "The horse jumped over the f[- - - ]ing fence."
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is ©2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Tuesday’s 5-Star Special
There’s yet another themed restaurant in Taipei, this one hospital-like, with "nurses" serving diners seated around beds, with IV drips of libations (but into their glasses, not their arms).

Civilization in Decline
Add to the list of companies with massive customer-data security breaches: the mail-order sellers of, er, Astroglide lubricant, which is for, er, well, certain activities. That is, many of Astroglide’s customers may be touchier about their privacy than, y’know, Shell Oil customers are.

The Human Condition Today
At a Melbourne, Fla., pub crawl: physicians dressed as superheroes, several Captain Americas, one (Dr. Raymond Adamcik) whose pick-up line was, Would you like to pat the burrito in my tights? . . . . . Two teen Australian girls were charged with strangling a third ("Sunday morning me and [the other defendant] woke up, and we were just talking, and for some reason we just decided to kill her. We just did it because we felt like it; it is hard to explain") . . . . . Said a former neighbor, describing N.Y. Mets fan Frank Martinez (who was ejected on Friday night for high-beaming light into the eyes of Atlanta Braves’ players during the game), he was a "psycho" who would shout "M! E! T! S!" at the top of his lungs in the hallway over and over following a game . . . . . Some Art Is Perfect: German performance artist Arnd Drossel made a big mesh ball of high-grade steel strands and will live inside it while rolling 220 miles through the countryside, and the reason he’s doing it is to raise awareness of mental illness: "[A] year ago, I hit a low [and] I set about thinking of a way to publicize those who need psychiatric help and came up with this."

Your Daily Loser
An unnamed man called 911 in Clyman, Wis., for help after he gave $20 to a woman at a strip club for a lap dance, only it turns out she didn’t work there and just walked out with his $20.

NOTW Lite
Two good ol' boys were sitting on a big piece of plywood in back of a pickup truck in Fort Worth, Tex., and a big gust of wind came along, and suddenly they were flying, but crash-landed on the street and were hospitalized with injuries.

Updates
Rick Hoefer! Rick Hoefer! Rick Hoefer is the South Carolina defense lawyer you’ll want if you get in trouble, since he just got accused teen-sex dungeonmaster Kenneth Glenn Hinson off, scot-free [NOTW Daily, 4-19-2007] (Seriously) . . . . . It took months to resolve, but the Dept. of Veterans Affairs finally agreed that, since there are gravestone emblems for 37 other religions, plus one for atheists, there ought to be one for Wiccans, too [NOTW 958, 6-18-2006] . . . . . It appears that the Phelpses did not picket the Va. Tech student’s funeral in Evans, Ga. [NOTW Daily, 4-21-2007] but instead chose to accept the invitation of conservative radio talker Mike Gallagher and be his only guests for an hour.

Good Enough for Government Work
A Washington Post investigation found, through documents and interviews with bureaucrats, that the Food and Drug Administration knew about the recent peanut-contamination and spinach-contamination risks for years but that the agency’s protective system is broken . . . . . Massachusetts’s state criminal database shows the number of arrest warrants outstanding is, er, 378,733 (including 14,000 for violent felonies) . . . . . On the other hand, according to a Boston Globe investigation, there are at least 14 Massachusetts prison inmates who are being kept illegally beyond their release dates, so that should help even things out.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Mental health pro’s get all huffy if you don’t get Cho Seung-Hui’s diagnosis correct (anger-depression? psychopathy? psychosis?), and they also get huffy if you think there’s anything actually wrong with hearing voices (a typical symptom of psychosis, but by itself, maybe neutral). Not surprisingly, the voices-hearing people are organized.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, April 23, 2007

[NOTE: Don't miss the new feature, Professor Music's Weird Links, at the bottom of this post.]

Monday’s 5-Star Special
A Texas state senator, Carlos Uresti, got his bill passed resoundingly, 26-4, to keep 18-yr-olds (including 18-yr-olds at Fort Hood training for Iraq combat), from buying cigarettes, on the ground, of course, that what’s really going to shorten their lives is smoking. They have to wait ‘til they’re 19, according to the bill.

Civilization in Decline
It seems to Yr Editor like a slam-dunk source of easy gov’t revenue: follow suspended-driver’s-license convicts out of the courthouse to see how they get home, and in Illinois, if they drive, the state wins their car (but a Chicago Sun-Times investigation says many, many are still getting away with it) . . . . . A less-appropriate source of gov’t revenue: Britain’s Home Office says victims of car theft should pay the equivalent of about $200 if they expect police to "forensicate" (DNA, fingerprints) the cars they eventually recover without a perp . . . . . To keep all those sociopathic Ivy Leaguers from going over the edge, Yale has decreed that any weapons appearing in campus stage productions have to be obviously dorky-looking toys . . . . . Sheryl Crow would never deprive us of our rights, but one limit she’d like to see would be a max of 3 squares of toilet paper per visit, and usually just 1 . . . . . Missouri is a big player of the stupid game that allows "riverboat casinos" on non-rivers that are just specially-dug ponds on which the casino floats, raising the question of why you need body of water around a casino, anyway—oh, wait, here’s a reason.

The Human Condition Today
Southern Oregon Univ. dean’s lister and campus senator, Brandi Freeman, running for student president, said, Never mind, I made up that tearful reference about having a friend who died at Virginia Tech, ‘cause I thought it would get me votes . . . . . The Fine Line Between "Weird" and "Mentally Ill": Veteran sailor plus novice shove off, 70-ft. sailboat, nearly-3-yr voyage, 3x around the globe, no port stops, no wimpily going through the Panama Canal, either . . . . . Suspended sentences go to four women who, on video, forced a boy, 2, to fight a girl, 3, using some measure of viciousness (Bonus: the four are the kids’ mother, grandmother, aunt, and aunt) (Extra bonus: they’re from Central Casting, as you can see).

Your Daily Losers
Two guys walked into a Postal Annex in Portland, Ore., with a folding knife, demanding the contents of the cash drawer, but when one had trouble getting the knife out, like, with his thumbnail, the clerks started giggling, and one faked calling 911, whereupon the perps split

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
A Connecticut court bailiff resigned and got community service for a great idea he had: to convince a homeless couple to have sex for his viewing pleasure (by telling them he was an insurance executive who needed to test condoms on new sperm-enhancing bedsheets) (Seriously).

NOTW Lite
In Changsha, China, a girl, 10, fell off a balcony and went right through the open sun roof of a car (broken hand, only) . . . . . Ho-hum: Another grown woman getting pregnant by a teenager, but at least she’s a hottie . . . . . Something almost as gross as that: A college student (victim of a random attack) gets a metal chair leg through his eye socket (with x-ray) (Bonus: "I forgive [the perp], totally") . . . . . Readers’ Choice: A correctional facility in LaGrange, Ky., released a prisoner solely on the authority of a fax from the "Kentucky Supreme Court" (on letterhead-less paper, full of typos, with the imprinted originator being a local grocery store).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Today Yr Editor introduces a new feature of choice Weird Links, anchored by the eccentric, eclectic, long-time member of the News of the Weird Board of Editorial Advisors, the Hon. Paul Music (but others’ contributions are certainly welcome). The best Weird Links will be those where the creator wasn’t trying to be weird (although, if he's trying, and it's really, really good, OK). (But ordinary joke sites are not what Yr Editor has in mind.) We’ll kick it off with an evergreen, just so you get the picture: all you’d ever want to know about the many benefits of, uh, having an actual hole in your head.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Saturday’s 5-Star Special
The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union workers, tired of slow negotiations on a new contract, went on strike in Regina, Sask., against their employer, which is, uh, the Gov’t and General Employees’ Union, which is having its annual meeting there.

Civilization in Decline
According to a sole-sourced AP story from Iraq, al-Qaeda’s extreme-Muslim types have threatened street vendors in Baqouba to separate their tomatoes and their cucumbers because they are veggies of different genders . . . . . At a school in Maharashtra, India, an upper-caste head teacher tried benevolently to upgrade the lower-caste students, by spritzing them with cow urine . . . . . Two gov’t ministers in Ivory Coast, who were taking over each other's department in a shake-up, brawled over their respective budgets and furniture.

The Human Condition Today
A 16-yr-old kid waiting for a school bus in Jacksonville, Fla., was run over by a car, which is understandable, since it appears he was asleep in the road . . . . . It turns out that Nina Wang, who inherited China’s largest private developer and was the 154th richest person in the world and who died earlier this month, left her whole (estimated) $4 billion to a fortune-teller who had made her feel good.

Your Daily Loser
Haouy Nguyen, 50, doused himself with gasoline at Long Beach (Calif.) City Hall and set himself on fire, but he was rescued and is in a burn center, and he can wait until he recovers to deal with the arson charge the city is about to file.

NOTW Lite
Eric Joswig was a dog of a husband, for many of the 27 yrs of his marriage, and now, to win his lady back, he decided to put up schmalzy billboards around town to let everyone know he’s a changed man (and it might be working!) . . . . . Ms. Venus Ramey, 82, using a walker but wielding a mean snub-nosed .38, chased a thief out of her barn (Bonus: In 1944, she was Miss America).

NOTW, The Blog
Erroror: Rev. Phelps and crew will not picket against un-Christian America today in Blacksburg; they’ve actually chosen one lucky funeral to picket, and that’s today in Evans, Ga.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
Farmer Richard Gordon, 41, arrested when Australian airport authorities found 729 grams of ephedrine strapped to his thighs and groin, said he’s not a meth manufacturer or trafficker. His story: He needed it for a sick albino buffalo, swear to God. And the reason why he jumped bail in December? That was because he was afraid of brush fires on his ranch and so had to go accompany his buffaloes on foot to safer ground because the poor dears can’t be transported by strangers. Yr Editor sure hopes he’s not telling the truth.

Civilization in Decline
The Virginia Tech tragedy is now nearly complete, and by that, I mean that Rev. Fred Phelps will be picketing in Blacksburg (seeing as how the victims are all in hell now because none of them was a true Christian). Cho is in hell, too, on a commandments-violation, but at least, the Phelpses say, he was carrying out God’s wishes . . . . . Say What? A direct descendent of the Prophet Muhammad is an actor doing gay porn in NYC . . . . . Flash! In Macedonia, it’s a common punishment of your kids to make them eat chilis (scroll down the story).

The Human Condition Today
According to the quote, the reason the big-rig driver lost control and overturned was, “I just looked down briefly on the floor where I had thrown a couple of doughnuts I was going to eat later” . . . . . So a janitor applies to be a Connecticut state trooper, and a friend gives him “great” advice, i.e., be totally honest in the interview, so he volunteers that he fondled an underage girl a few yrs back (which absolutely no one knew about until right then, and which the girl didn’t even recall because she was asleep), and now, he’s toast . . . . . Details are missing, but in Tulsa, Okla., a biker, at 120 mph and with helmet but no evidence of brake use, plowed into the back of a semi, impaled himself, and was dragged along for a while until the driver could stop . . . . . Art Mania! (1) Henk van Leeuwen was jailed for 7 yrs in Sydney for his “obsessive” collecting/possessing, i.e., theft, of 2,000 artifacts from a natural history museum, and (2) the finance and operations director of the Austin (Tex.) Museum of Art was caught, with his wife, allegedly stealing pieces (in the still of the night) from the tents housing the town’s fine arts festival.

NOTW Lite
More Japanese cuisine: cookies made with the “essence of jellyfish” (reportedly “delicious”!) . . . . It’s not what Charles Dickens had in mind, but in a Dallas courtroom, the law was an ass (or at least, defendant’s Exhibit A was) . . . . . Space-Age Surgical Breakthroughs: (1) a tiny creepy-crawly robot that climbs all over your actual heart, probing this, delivering that, and (2) gallbladder removal via incision in the, er, vagina (which was called “repulsive” by one progressive female surgeon) (but which still wasn’t as bad as the appendix removed via the mouth) (Seriously).

NOTW, The Blog
Not only is it getting to be No Longer Weird that all these drunk drivers lately keep blowing readings beyond “fatal” (0.4 and above), like this Washington state chick (and former cop), at 0.47, but these readings are all obviously the products of badly calibrated breathalyzers. Actual blood-draw toxicology readings (which are usually useless as a traffic-stop weapon because they require actual, specific consent and also because of the delay in getting the drunk to a lab) would undoubtedly be lower than for the blow machines.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
Britain’s Dept. of Work and Pensions acknowledged that, though polygamy is illegal, if an immigrant arrives with multiple wives, gov’t rules say that they’re all dependents for welfare purposes. (Bonus: Under the rules, the allowance differential for the first wife is actually a little less than the allowance differential for the subsequent wives.) (Islam, of course, supposedly permits polygamy but only if the husband can take care of the wives financially.)

Civilization in Decline
The world’s oldest continuously operating family business, Japan’s Kongo Gumi, was bought out after 14 centuries of service (it builds Buddhist temples) . . . . . A confessed Canadian shoplifter won his lawsuit (C$12k) because security guards had tackled him, breaking a tooth . . . . . In another Canadian gem, a judge rules that it’s OK to drive drunk if you’re suicidal (that is, if you’re rushing to get life-saving help for No. 1, even if you're a menace to kill all the other No.'s on the highway) . . . . . A Philadelphia firefighter is a part-time rapper (sample lyric: “I got a surprise for them cops . . [I]’m gonna turn pigs into bacon bits”) named Cal Akbar (“Cal” being short for “calibre”), and the Fraternal Order of Police has a problem with that. (But in sympathy with firefighters, Yr Editor reports that Jeffrey Cullen got 5 months in jail in Kingman, Ariz., this week because, when firefighters declined to get his cat out of a tree, he pulled a piece and started firing.)

The Human Condition Today
A 13-yr-old kid in St. Louis, showing off to win a $5 bet, climbed triumphantly to the top of an electricity tower (but then got burned and fell, and the family is suing the utility for at least $350k) . . . . . His wife is the mayor, but his ex-wife is running against her, and he’s voting for the ex- ‘cause his wife’s politics are too liberal . . . . . Here in Weird Central, there’s a hearing next week (with a trial possible in July) over whether two locals can keep the dogs they adopted after Hurricane Katrina when the original owner in N’awlins had only temporarily fled his home; one adopter has been represented by one of this area’s biggest-ticket lawyers for a year now (but the lawyer may be working for a reduced fee since his client is a local prosecuting attorney) . . . . . An apprentice plumber, first day on the job in Kingswear, England, mis-blowtorched some insulation, and a mansion worth the equivalent of $10m burned to the ground.

Your Daily Loser
South Carolinian Kenneth Glenn Hinson, 48, who is a poster-child candidate for post-punishment detention of sex offenders (except that he hasn’t been convicted yet, but never mind), said “I’m very proud of it” when his prosecutor described for the court the construction and layout of his “Wild Bill” [Silence of the Lambs]-type underground dungeon, in which he allegedly kept two teenage girls before they escaped in March 2006. (Bonus: photo)

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Former principal Robert Holloway of Lorain, Ohio, was convicted of a sex charge because, after betting with three male students over a staff volleyball game, he apparently enjoyed paying off a little too much, in that he had promised to kiss their feet if they won. Since police found hundreds of photos of foot-kissing on Holloway’s computer, they decided he had been up to no-good all along. [Ed.: Now, on the other hand, the kids apparently took themselves merely to be winners of a bet and witnesses to the degrading behavior of foot-kissing; apparently none thought he was the victim of life-scarring sex. Nonetheless . . ..]

NOTW Lite
Glory Days! The Amora Academy (a sex theme park, not quite “Disney with dildos”) opened in London with exhibits on how to search for the G-spot, on the vibrator hooked up to a power drill, and an hour's worth of more stuff) . . . . . 25 girls were turned away from their high school prom in a N’awlins suburb, mostly on cleavage violations (but, said, one mom, “There are some breasts you [just] can’t hide in a dress”) . . . . . A Chinese nudist woman (who runs a naturists’ web-cammed chat room) was acquitted of pornography charges in the suddenly enlightened People’s Republic.

Update
While more Phillipines crucifixions took place this year on Good Friday, another local contingent slashed their backs with blades and flagellated themselves [Ed.: and you thought only Muslims did that?], but now comes word that one of the self-flagellees came down with rabies, which is bad, because they shared the blade.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Police in Neenah, Wis., want to find the guy who masturbated on the library patron two weeks ago, but the progressive state law says that a library’s surveillance tapes are confidential ('cause people might see what you’re reading!). Police can try to get a court order releasing the tape, but it’s possible that the criminal act here is not a felony or misdemeanor but a simple ordinance violation, which would not authorize a court order. So, for now, even though they've got a video, they’ll have to draw a police sketch of the guy.

Civilization in Decline
The city council in Galway, Ireland, after listening to a citizen’s worst-case complaint, refused to change its 10-minute rule for public toilet kiosks, so the next time, also, that a diarrhea sufferer exceeds the time limit, he’ll have to pull his pants up, step outside, and feed more coins . . . . . Relief for those of you whose neurosurgeon’s nickname is “Shakes”: Now, a robot can have life-or-death control of your surgery . . . . . Post-Imus news: Rutgers Univ., home of sterling student-athletes, finally admits it shouldn’t have signed up that “aggravated sexual assault”-er of a football player (whom it signed despite the victim’s mother’s calling Rutgers “so many times” to stop it, because “parents have a right to know” where they’re sending their daughters) . . . . . Post-Va. Tech news: The day after, a Secret Service officer at the White House shot himself and a colleague by accident, and the night before, a New Jersey parole officer took 3 people down with a single shot, by accident; and the day after, the Univ. of Oklahoma locked down its main campus on report of some guy carrying a suspicious object (ultimately: an umbrella).

The Human Condition Today
Among the female sexual phobias discussed at a conference in Sydney: a woman’s fear that the man will be “swallowed up” during sex . . . . . A Lincoln, Neb., mother, upset that her daughter had just had a bad soccer game, was insufficiently satisfied at the girl’s attitude and thus left her on the side of Interstate 80 . . . . . An Australian couple defended against charges of sexually assaulting the woman’s daughter by pointing out that the husband’s body was regularly taken over by the Egyptian sex god Min and, thus, that those things that happened were beyond his (and her) control (and besides, Min said that sex would cure the girl’s cyst).

Your Daily Loser
Thomas Barlow, 35, was found passed out in a bathroom stall in Fond du Lac, Wis., and when asked for identification, Barlow reached in his pocket and handed the cop his pot pipe, and the officer said to try again, and Barlow pulled out his check book. A while later, of course, he denied ever having seen that pot pipe before.

NOTW, The Blog
Erroror: Purple-suit Scott Panetti, from yesterday, is indeed from Wisconsin, but he’s on death row in Texas . . . . . and the link to the trash-the-house party was incompatible with Blogger software, so I put up an alternative source.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Tuesday’s Drip
Canada rips off medicinal marijuana patients / The “please come trash this house” MySpace party invite / The best defense lawyer in America / And flaming bidets

Civilization in Decline
Tomorrow, SCOTUS considers whether Wisconsin [CORRECTION: Texas, though Panetti is a Wisconsin native] can execute the kinda-insane double-murderer Scott Panetti, who acted as his own lawyer at one trial dressed in a purple cowboy suit and who subpoenaed the Pope and two dead people to testify (er, Jesus and JFK) . . . . . Five words: Russia’s floating nuclear power plants . . . . . Human rights violation: Gov’t docs reveal that Health Canada charges a 1,500-percent markup to disabled medicinal marijuana patients (plus, apparently, the stuff sucks).

The Human Condition Today
Dayton, Ohio, police rescued a man bound and gagged with duct tape, soaked in gasoline, and they’re certain he did it, himself, though they don’t quite know why . . . . . Monks at The Church of the Hills Monastery (Blanco, Tex.), facing trial, turn on each other as to who was having sex with whom . . . . . A worst-case “Risky Business” party in England, set up when Rachael Bell’s mild mom’s-away party announcement on MySpace.com was hacked into being a please-trash-this-house party [LINK CORRECTED, again] . . . . . Massachusetts shrink Eric Leskowitz and his cousin are preparing a documentary on whether that transcendental-meditation-type concentrated thinking (y’know, concentrate on peace, and all war will go away) might be helping the Red Sox at Fenway . . . . . A rapper named Busdriver explained that whole Don Imus thing for us: “The language in [rap] doesn’t necessarily constitute ill will. ‘Bitch’ and ‘ho’ can be terms of endearment” . . . . . Remember this name if you ever get in trouble in central Pennsylvania: H. Anthony Adams (the lawyer who just got Donald Duncan Jr. off [except for minor charges] after Duncan claimed his hidden camera that captured teenage girls undressing was really just a hidden camera to capture ghosts in his house) . . . . . A 61-yr-old F-Stater was arrested for shoplifting despite assuring the officer that the only reason she didn't wait in line to pay was that her Irritable Bowel Syndrome was acting up, so, gotta go.

NOTW Lite
Unanticipated consequence of chemical castration (say, for convicted child molesters): They get hot flashes . . . . . Life Imitates Art Imitates Life: Charlie Sheen settles up ($) with his stalker because a stalker-type character in his show violated the real-life stalker’s privacy . . . . . The Japanese toilet maker Toto Ltd. issued a major recall for its fully-equipped bidets because they were, er, catching fire . . . . . The autistic Barney Vincelette of Houston, Del., is Yr Editor’s hero because he took his extreme sensitivity to OPM (Other People’s Music) and beat them fair and square, i.e., he created some awful-sounding noises and had them declared to be music (Sonata for Calliope of Truck Horns, About to be Transcribed for Locomotive Horns Opus No. 1), and now “plays” it for his neighbors every time he hears their music, and the local judge just has to shrug.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Monday’s Drip
The hospital that didn’t want to change its sheets / Illegal to let your dust blow into neighbors’ eyes? / “Assault” for squirting the cop with breast milk / And a minister tries to get kids to pull their damn pants up

Civilization in Decline
British health care, indeed! Good Hope Hospital had posters up imploring the staff to re-use sheets instead of laundering them (but defended itself, saying, well, the posters were old) . . . . .
2½ times more kids have been killed in the last 5 yrs in the slums of Rio than in Israel/Palestinian territories . . . . . Pima County, Ariz., has an ordinance against letting dust blow off of your land (seriously) because, actually, “the desert” is pretty crusty, and it’s mostly people digging that cause dust . . . . . Know Sin/Fight Sin: 8 of the 15 Democrats running for Traffic Court openings in Philadelphia have outstanding tickets.

The Human Condition Today
In Utah, at least, kids play a game in which the winner endures other kids scratching the A-B-C’s into his skin over and over the longest (except this one kid came down with flesh-eating bacteria) . . . . . A feud boiled over at a convent in Avdellero, Cyprus, and nuns and priests mauled each other, blood everywhere (Seriously) . . . . . In England, an 18-yr-old accused shoplifter is to appear in Richmond Magistrates Court, to answer a charge that she resisted arrest by spraying the cop with milk from “her right breast” . . . . . And, at last, some original reporting on the old and tired “too many cats” genre: This house in Ocala, Fla., had an ammonia-air-saturation level of .31 (.20 is supposedly fatal).

People Whose Sex Life Is Worse Than Yours
Police picked up a man who needed an hour to relieve himself in the restroom at Silverlake Elementary (Grapevine, Tex.), and, oh, he was in the boys’ and the girls’. (Bonus: mugshot)

NOTW Lite
Fine Points of the Law: An Irish guy who wants to do more salmon fishing went to court and invoked, drum-roll, the Magna Carta (yes, that Magna Carta) . . . . . At an inquest in Britain, a couple’s traffic deaths were officially called an accident, having occurred when a bee stung another driver in the crotch, causing him to lose control of his car . . . . . In Jaen, Spain, a man was acquitted of 3 rapes after he, uh, measured up in court, and thus showed that the victims must have been mistaken (Details! We need details!) . . . . . The Netherlands is already walking on egg shells, Muslim-wise, but in The Hague, police announced that at one station, they’ve been telling Muslim prisoners that Mecca was this way, and it turns out that Mecca is that way . . . . . San Francisco police are looking for a woman who pulled off a high-school-magician kind of trick (clearing up black water) to scam people afraid of cancer.

NOTW, The Blog
The genre’s just been No Longer Weird-ed, so Yr Editor is indifferent to Memphis minister Roland Robinson’s PullYourPantsUpMission.com, aimed at baggy-drawered youth . . . . . And, in case you haven’t seen it, here’s the result of the Taiwanese zookeeper’s getting a little too confident about his relationship with that crocodile.
This post is ©2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Friday’s Drip
[NOTE: It's pretty certain Yr Editor will not post tomorrow. Actually, except for the news-news, it’s been a pretty light week, anyway. But if later-today's news flood demands, I'll be here.]

Civilization in Decline
Britain’s Home Dept. has a great idea, to take the 1,500 most dysfunctional families (whose crime, and incompetence at co-existing with others, cost the gov’t a (seemingly wildly made-up) equivalent of $1.04 billion a year, house them in special quarters, monitor them, and teach them coping skills . . . . . District of Calamity: The Washington, D.C., gov’t is so out of control [Ed.: District of Columbia gov't, out of control? Why didn't someone say something sooner?] that it has sucked up to the transit workers’ union enough that it's almost forced to pay massive overtime instead of hiring new workers.

The Human Condition Today
A state in northeastern Malaysia has agreed with religious officials to set up a rehab camp for cross-dressers . . . . . According to the surveillance video, the jail guard in Mankato, Minn., just walked into the guy’s cell, picked up a Bible, and started slapping him with it . . . . . A West Va. school bus driver parked the bus outside an adult book store, with the driver’s 10- to 12-yr-old daughter still on it, and went inside to shop (Bonus: The bus driver’s a woman [but, of course, just picking up something for a "friend"]) . . . . . A British diplomat in Thailand started blogging for The Nation newspaper, and soon the comments section had notes from people outing him as a regular in Bangkok’s red-light district.

Your Daily Loser
David McGregor, 35, whiskey-fortified, was jailed in Perth, Scotland, for 16 months, following a break-in, which we all celebrate now as McGregor’s 100th criminal conviction (and, at his age, this is like Alex Rodriguez’s having 470 home runs at age 32).

NOTW Lite
British researchers find that playing in the dirt can be just as depression-relieving as Prozac-type medications (Seriously) . . . . . Is there an FAA understaffing problem, just because two airliners had to circle Manchester, N.H., because the lone air traffic controller was taking a potty break? . . . . . Ellen Massey, 58, is now resting comfortably at a hospital after the Monday incident in NYC, at the Mets’ game, when she was blindsided in her seat by a 300-lb. fan tumbling down on her from a higher-up row (but who apparently, nimbly scurried away before any insurance information could be exchanged)..

NOTW, The Blog
Erroror: As a few readers have pointed out (two with those letter groups after their names, which I knew I was in big trouble when I saw), I wrote confusingly yesterday about the turd transplant. The reality is: Bacteria in the digestive tract . . Good. Anti-bacteria . . Bad. What was being transplanted into the patient was a houseful of good bacteria strong enough to destroy the dangerous bacteria associated with caca. I have corrected the original.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Thursday’s Drip
Slavery, segregated proms, and the n-word, and Imus wasn’t involved / Chefs who go nuts / A new Terri Schiavo on deck / And men in vulnerable positions on weight-training machines

Civilization in Decline
Imus-ization of the News: (1) A Minnesota county board member says he didn’t literally mean that he’d vote for slavery if his constituents demanded it (but was just making a "democracy" point, on low blood-sugar) and (2) both the store and the distributor in Ontario said they’d never noticed that the chocolate-colored sofa set they’d been selling (made in Ghangzhou, China) was prominently labeled as the color "[N-word] Brown" [link from ObscureStore.com] . . . . . But on the other hand, Turner County High School in Ashburn, Ga., announced they’d have a joint prom (blacks and whites) this year for the first time . . . . . A 1999 Texas law (signed by the loudly pro-life then-governor) seems positively un-fundamentalist, in that it allows hospitals to pull the plug on medically futile cases after 10 days’ notice to the family, and Austin mom Catarina Gonzales doesn’t like that one bit . . . . . What a coincidence that the chief financial officer of the lead-petfood-recall company in Canada just happened to sell half his shares on the day that calls about sick cats began to arrive at the company (and he’s $35,000 [Cdn] richer today because of that) . . . . . And Clinton Zimmerman said it was just a coincidence that the "employee" he suspected of breaking things at his Maine bed and breakfast was somehow likelier to strike at a guest bathroom than other places (and that’s why he had the secret camera trained on it).

The Human Condition Today
A smoking-averse man was arrested in Stonehaven, Scotland, for spraying a smoker with deodorant and trying to wash her face with his saliva . . . . . Hotshot Minneapolis chef Landon Schoenefeld was fired after going nuts on a diner who wanted his salad dressing on the side.

NOTW Lite
Yes, a leg-extension machine in a gym can malfunction and send an iron bar back between your legs at warp speed (and yes, when that happens to a guy, he will be permanently bowlegged) . . . . . They have car thieves in Myanmar, too, but there they might do it primarily to siphon out the gasoline (which is tightly-rationed).

Updates
The White House and Ford Motor Company now say that spectacular near-miss by President Bush (plugging into the fuel supply of the electric car) [NOTW Daily, 4-9-2007] didn’t happen the way the Ford CEO told it. [Ed.: But, still, is plugging into the fuel supply a possibility? That could make Ford’s legal dept. forget all about the Pinto.]

NOTW, The Blog
[CORRECTIONS: This paragraph originally made several confusing and erroneous references to "anti-bacterials" and has now been flushed of them, so to speak.] BoingBoing.net posted an old piece yesterday that Yr Editor never got around to posting in 2003, when he heard about it (because I have time limits, in that "News" of the Weird should contain "news" and not just "anything I happen to think of"). Dr. Johannes Aas (at the time in Minneapolis, and maybe still there), publishing in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, described a breakthrough for worst-case diarrhea and colitis (when naturally-occurring digestive flora don't work in destroying bacteria, and supplements don’t work, either). According to Dr. Aas and team, what you do is take some caca from someone of the same environment (which would have natural flora similar to what the patient is supposed to have) and transplant it. A husband, for instance, would get a turd transplant from his wife, allowing her natural flora to work, starting in his own barren stomach. Thought you’d want to know. The journal article is still online. (And no, Dr. Aas is prominent enough that the article is not a prank by a doctor with a pseudonym suggesting "ass.") (Yr Editor thinks of these things so that you don’t have to.)
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Wednesday’s Drip
Californians need to be on guard against decrepit 94-yr-olds / Three words: "Iraqi Tourism Board" / India cracks down on bitchy bureaucrats / And, mm-mmm, bacon!

Civilization in Decline
In acts of breathtaking chutzpah, the city of N’awlins and its state have filed claims demanding that the Army Corps of Engineers pay at least $277B for Katrina damage (even though ya don’t have to look very hard at all to find years of cheap, short-term environmental thinking by the city and state that almost assured that a Big One would take it down) . . . . . Walker-using 94-yr-old John Rodriguez, now in a Calif. prison for 25 yrs on a minimum-16 sentence for 2nd-degree murder (and who hasn’t had a prison act-up in 15 yrs), has seen three governors turn down his board-recommended parole six times, because, well, because . . . . . Tourism in the News: (1) Branch Davidian survivors want to turn the Waco compound site into a spiritual center (please donate $10m, OK?) and (2) There’s actually a fully functional Iraqi tourism board, and allegedly 350,000 made the trek last yr (presumably not counting insurgents) . . . . . India’s Ministry of Personnel, enacting the All-India Services Performance Appraisal Rules 2007, requires that female employees tell how their last menstrual period went (Seriously).

The Human Condition Today
Too Clever By Half: Christopher Carroll walked into the Microtel motel in Kingsport, Tenn., with a handful of money and implied that he had saved the day by chasing down the guy who had just robbed them, only Christopher seemed to have the same pattern of scars on his arm as the robber (even though he had, at least, discarded the stocking he wore over his head) . . . . . The airwaves and newsprint are buzzing here in Weird Central this morning about the 911 supervisor who couldn’t be bothered while a woman was choking to death ("Another one bites the dust"; "I guess she bit off more than she can chew") . . . . . Also in the F State, a school custodian, age 61, is very fond of his custodian colleague, 41, so he adopted her.

Your Daily Loser
Joel Montgomery is a city councilman in Birmingham, Ala., but that doesn’t mean he can’t be found, sitting in a parking lot in the middle of the night, three sheets to the wind, with his face bashed in [Bonus: photo].

NOTW Lite
Not as agile as Heather Mills, Gregory Daniels ran from police after burglarizing a market in Pomona, Calif., but then, his leg fell off . . . . . David Hughes, 39, in northeast Pennsylvania, really, really, really didn’t want to pay more than $10 on a $281 fine . . . . . Charles Warren is in the hospital in a N’awlins suburb after a crash on I-12, in which his motorcycle was hit by an out-of-control bathtub . . . . . Yr Editor always considered academicking to be a relatively prestigious occupation, but a couple dozen times a year, you hear about pursuits like what these British and French scientists did (camping out on the island of Oleron to chart the hoots of 17 territorial male owls to gauge the level of machismo) or like that of these four at Leeds Univ.’s Food Science Dept., who actually tested 700 variations of "bacon sandwich" to produce a recipe for perfection: N = C + [fb (cm) x fb (tc)] + fb (Ts) + fc x ta.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Tuesday’s Drip
Apparently, it’s a lot of fun to cry / Mormon brings the pain to a Baptist soul-saver / People who smell like fish all the time / And the project that’s too weird for DARPA

Civilization in Decline
A "misery club" called Loss meets in London (genre imported from Japan), with people gathering to have a great time being sad and crying (with actual raw onions on hand to help) . . . . . The Dallas County (Tex.) district attorney was to apologize this week, on behalf of his late predecessor Henry Wade, to James Giles for Wade’s railroading him on a rape charge in 1983 (Giles being one of many, many railroadees during the Wade years) ("Back then, if you sent someone to jail who was possibly innocent, it was a badge of honor," said the current DA) . . . . . Sounds like a joke: The proprietor of an Orlando massage parlor was arrested for prostitution following a police investigation of, er, 18 months.

The Human Condition Today
He fled an attempted traffic stop but was thoughtful enough to call 911 on his cell to inform them that the reason he wasn’t stopping was that he hadn’t done anything wrong (and turns out he was mistaken about that) . . . . . When Anne the Mormon met Lonnie the Baptist (one of those free-lance soul-savers of Mormons), she didn’t brake her wheelchair for Lonnie’s knee . . . . . Yeah, he was senselessly vandalizing a home, and yeah, he was naked, but give him credit for thinking out of the box about who he was (Marcus Aurelius) . . . . . British psychologist John McCarron was admonished by his ass’n for his tough-loving of clients (you "wanker," you "pathetic" "waste of space") . . . . . A restaurant chain, The Loop Pizza Grill (9 stores in Jacksonville, Fla.), hired 6 chaplains to offer 24/7 counseling to its employees . . . . . Chemist George Preti practically volunteers his time to counsel sufferers from the metabolic disorder that causes you to smell like fish even after several showers but also has the pleasure of telling the occasional "patient": Uh, no, your metabolism checks out fine (i.e., ever heard of soap?).

NOTW Lite
A soccer league in China issues its edict: stop giving people the finger . . . . . Univ. of Washington mainstream physicist John Cramer says for $20k, he can make inroads in quantum theory on whether time travel is possible, by splitting a photon, but even DARPA thinks that’s too weird [and Yr Editor would love to explain all the physics behind this to you, but, uh, uh, the Internet is short on space today, so I had to cut] . . . . . The New Orleans airport seems paralyzed on what to do about the 22 cars still left in its lots from Katrina weekend, so it’s still administratively calculating the fees ($15/day for the short-term lot) . . . . . And certain people passed away: this guy while demonstrating to friends how another guy had shot himself to death; this guy leaning out of a moving car to vomit when a mailbox happened along; this guy stretching out on a cliff to paint his girlfriend’s name on a rock (and if she were "Kay" instead of "Kaylee," he might still be alive); and this woman, accidentally stomped to death in a crowd queuing up to buy a religious amulet . . . . . Priorities, expressed by a police spokesman in Shropshire, England, commenting on a dead body found in the woods, stripped of watch, wallet, and shoes: "Stealing a person’s shoes is a particularly appalling and degrading thing to do, and it seems all the more so when it happens over the Easter holiday period."

Update
BoingBoing.net linked to a Google Video listing of a BBC documentary about our long-time source material Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church, narrated by Louis Theroux.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Monday’s Drip
A little bit of Easter news (not even counting the "Testosterone Theology") / The $400 million oil executive who doesn’t work for Exxon / Canisters of child porn / And no free lunches in Wichita

Civilization in Decline
New Zealand’s Labour Dept. ruled that, er, sex workers, being in a service industry, didn’t have to close down for Easter (whereas goods-peddlers did) . . . . . Ray Irani, chair and CEO of Occidental Petroleum, took home more than $400m last yr (but relax: only $2.7m in salary and cash bonus, meaning, er, can’t Yr Editor find some way to create NOTW stock options?) . . . . . Detroit News buried the lede: This note is ostensibly about the Ford Motor Company CEO grabbing President Bush before he disastrously plugs into the wrong thing at a Ford electric-car demonstration, but, seriously, is this car really that dangerous that it’ll blow up if you mis-plug it? . . . . You thought Walter Reed was the end of the agony for veterans? The Washington Post reports that almost 400,000 disability claims are pending (135,000 of them for more than 160 days) . . . . . Easter at Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre was accompanied by the fragrance of, what, gunfire, no, human caca (because the latrines are busted, and the six warring Christian denominations that manage the Church cannot even come together to fix them, and in fact, even if they did agree, the outflow pipe passes underneath the church of a 7th denomination, which has vowed to resist unless it is granted Sepulchre-management status with the first 6) (Seriously) . . . . . Last yr, Thomas Wemberly, 74, walked out of a Wichita, Kan., convenience store without paying for the 2 hot dogs he had because he just forgot that he didn’t pay (a situation which Yr Editor, of advancing age, can sympathize with), and by the time Wichita justice got done with him, he’d been in lockup for 71 days, had bail set at $100k, and caused 12 jurors to miss two days’ work in order to, er, acquit him.

The Human Condition Today
Reclusive high-tech engineer Michael Palmer was arrested in Los Gatos, Calif., accused of hiding his massive cache of child porn in 15 ammo canisters he had buried in Saddam-like spider holes on his property . . . . . They’re cold in Boston: Relatives of serial batterer Michael Hart (a fella just convicted of killing a man and slashing an ex-girlfriend) had this to shout at the woman after Hart was sentenced: "God don’t like ugly" . . . . . About 100 people in a village in Borneo’s Sarawak state are alive today just because Mr. Renjis Empati, 57, had to take a dump in the middle of the night.

Your Daily Loser
Keep your eye on Prof. Albert Parish of Charleston Southern Univ. in South Carolina, because the day after the SEC filed investment fraud charges against him, he checked into a hospital with amnesia. Parish is known around town for his flamboyant suits and flamboyant, million-dollar collection of, er, pens.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Prominent West Papuan political activist Jacob Rumbiak, whose resumé includes episodes of torture by the gov’t, nonetheless has a serious, longstanding public masturbation habit (as Australia just got a 3-fer conviction, with another charge still pending, and he’s got a rap sheet from Japan).

NOTW Lite
In Daytona Beach, the Church for Men features a boredom-fighting rock band and a basketball-like shot clock to blow the horn on any verbose preacher . . . . . The school system in Mobile, Ala., ended an experiment in which 5th graders graduating to middle school would be instead assigned to be 6th graders at the same elementary school, and officials seemed surprised that the kids weren’t down with that.

Updates
This past weekend was that time again in San Pedro Cutud, Philippines, when a few guys who believe they’ve been really, really ba-a-a-a-d this yr agree to have themselves nailed to crosses, like with real nails through their real arms and hands. If you’re new to this phenomenon, here’s the story, but Yr Editor is much too busy to be searching the Internet every year for the choicest photos.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.