Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Tuesday’s 5-Star Special
a sloooowww news day

Civilization in Decline
One place we might be headed, the Safety Police say, is standard equipment in cars (the technology is done) to remind you, when you park, to take your urchin (in the back seat) with you [Ed.: and, let’s see, what else from the News of the Weird’s archive, oh, yes, standard equipment to detect whether there’s a pedestrian that you’ve hit, embedded in your windshield] . . . . . The UK’s Royal Air Force, straining to make Walter Reed Medical Center look good, has awarded a typist the equivalent of $980k for a repetitive-strain keyboard injury (vs. about $125k for an airman who loses a leg) . . . . . London’s Daily Mail had an on-the-scene report last Friday from Russia, from an annual camp that has largely turned into Putin Youth, with one of the messages being that there aren’t enough Putinistas in the world and thus immediate procreation is required . . . . . In Stoke-on-Trent, England, a artist's tribute to the environment—in the form of a 21-ft high, er, metal tree that they had to take down real trees to clear space for.

The Human Condition Today
In a suburb of Barcelona, Spain, a guy is headed to jail for two yrs for the crime of playing music too loud . . . . . From New Zealand, vegansexuals, who say they are "attracted" to carnivores but turned off at the thought of intimacy with the equivalent of a bundle of animal carcasses . . . . . Headline [Houston Chronicle]: "Harlingen Man Says He Couldn’t Smell Dead Wife" (dead in a back room for three days, but diabetes has damaged some nose nerves).

NOTW Lite
A consensus that things were headed in the wrong direction caused a revolt in Shelburne, Nova Scotia, er, in a major beehive, where the queen’s low approval rating required intervention by RCMP bee whisperers . . . . . India’s estimated 2m prostitutes apparently form a generous demographic for a new monthly magazine on sex work, including bios, emotional essays, and poems . . . . . Johns Hopkins’s latest: breeding mice with human schizophrenia genes (Bonus: from one family in Scotland!) . . . . . But that’s at least serious research, as contrasted with Univ. of Texas psychologists who drew paychecks while asking 400 students to give reasons why they chose to have sex and then 1,500 others to then rank those reasons in importance, and it’s hard to decide which—the researchers or the students—were more trying to call attention to themselves.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
The "Hiccups Warehouse" is a page with just video clips and audio clips of different people hiccuping. Seriously.

Newsrangers: Tony Flynn, Mark Neunder.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
CBS News did a big story on Kyle Krichbaum, 12, Adrian, Mich., who collects, er, vacuum cleaners (n=165), vacuums his own house up to 5x a day, has honed his obsession since infancy; it’s left to his older sister to explain: "He’s constantly vacuuming. It's always loud in my house. I’m just like why, why, why, why, why, why? I don’t understand."

[NOTE: Yr Editor updates his thinking on publication schedule, below, in The Blog]

Civilization in Decline
Sure, the FCC gets hysterical about a micro-glimpse of Janet Jackson’s areola, but then it’s powerless to do anything about this? [Warning: way-offensive word!] . . . . . F-State Justice: He got 25 yrs for possessing 58 Vicodin pills (that’s automatic "trafficking" in these parts), and the state statute cuts no slack if you’ve got, like, a prescription for ‘em, and only last week did a court find a problem with that . . . . . The Little League apparently hands out copies of the rulebook only on a "need to know" basis, with an umpire in Virginia not quite qualifying, according to commentary in yesterday’s Washington Post (LL is afraid that the rulebook will encourage litigation) . . . . . Another Washington Post piece looks closely at the latest viral Internet video in this "golden age of inanity" (the "I like turtles" zombie boy, in the "purest form" of the inanity: "meaninglessness squared").

The Human Condition Today
Add to the list of the world’s "super-sized" ballerina (etc.) troupes: Danza Voluminosa, of Havana, exquisitely reviewed this morning in the NY Times ("And when their dance becomes frenetic, the sheer weight of the dancers thudding across the stage conveys an excitement akin to a stampede, something out of control and wild, yet made of human flesh and blood") . . . . . In Phoenix on Saturday morning, police raided an exorcism in progress (on a 3-yr-old girl), but actually a successful exorcism, in that Satan apparently departed the girl and landed in the exorcist, who dropped dead shortly after police arrived . . . . . Those ubiquitous UK surveillance cameras scored again: The Kirklees Council was able to detect that the dog poop continually being left at a certain spot was made by the same, uh, human pooper . . . . . A trustee/choir-member at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic in Mountainside, N.J., was charged with 11 yrs of stealing from the collection plates, $28k worth.

Updates
The Transcendental Meditation people are back at it, promising that the Dow will regain last week’s losses and rise to 17,000 soon, since 1,800 concentrators are at work right now producing positive energy, and in fact, if 700 more join, crime will drop big-time, and almost all social and political problems will be solved (except "world peace," which will require 8,000 yogic flyers) . . . . . Here’s more information on the uninhibited pedophile from Washington state, who has now moved to Los Angeles and will soon, he said, re-launch his website that waxes rhapsodic about little girls and where to find them (even though he says he’s against "touching"); the authorities say there’s not a damned thing they can do to stop his posts.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Oddee.com has lots of photo features on it, most uninteresting to Yr Editor, but these two, at least, cover NOTW ground: 10 Most Bizarre Sports (half of which have made NOTW in some form) and 10 Real-Life Superheroes in Masks.

NOTW, The Blog
OK, enough of this whining. Try this out: It has to be six days a week, not three. However, two or three times a month, I’ll take a day off, usually with previous-day notice. Posts will be shorter. Instead of covering 16 to 18 items, I’ll only do 8, 7, 9, something like that. Posting will usually be done by, gasp, 10 a.m. NY time. My recommendation: Sign up for the e-mail. It’ll be brief, even if you choose to click the links. You can know the most ridiculous underreported news of the day in a minute or two. OK, I’m done with the self-pity. See you tomorrow.

Newsrangers: Stefan Palys, Mike Mendenhall, Craig Stuntz, Tom Barker, Ginger Katz, Joe Littrell.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
Yet another new fetish, but you’re not going to like it: Jeff Doland of Ohio was arrested when his flight landed in Miami, Fla., where he had allegedly arranged with a "mother" (in an Internet sting) to get himself off while watching her dunk her daughters underwater. He "liked watching the bubbles," he said.

Civilization in Decline
A survey of Britain’s girl-scoutlike Guides reveals they’d like training (badges?) in having safe sex, reducing their carbon footprints, and assembling flat-pack furniture . . . . . Brian Rodriguez served an Iraq tour and was honorably discharged early on in the war, but now comes the Army, sending him a bill for $700, presumably for things he damaged, but with no explanation of what or when (or how to question it or challenge it) [Ed.: But before we condemn the policy, let's see if the Army bills Rumsfeld for the damage he caused] . . . . . Another shining episode for Americans: As riptides off Ocean City, Md., took down a man, fatally, who was trying to save his two teenagers, crew members from a parasailing service boat helped, but the tourists on the boat merely grabbed their cameras to make sure they had exciting vacation shots for back home.

The Human Condition Today
The certified-delusional Zoran Kostic left an estate worth the equivalent of $20m to Britain’s Conservative Party, which the heirs want for themselves, but the Tories have testimony from a shrink saying that, insane or not, based on Kostic’s fear of "satanic monsters" in the world, giving to the Tories was perfectly logical (and by "insane," we mean his view that there's "an international conspiracy of more than 100 people masterminded by sexually perverted pharmaceutical company executives to destroy freedom, democracy, and human purity") . . . . . It’s a secure home, which is why they call it a gated community, but a 24-yr-old resident is no longer with us, having gotten her head caught between her car door and a pillar at the gate (AWI) . . . . . Here’s another Californian, which makes at least 3 in 5 yrs, who were so intent about driving to work, parking, and getting to their desks, that they completely forgot about the little urchin in the back seat that they were supposed to drop off at daycare (i.e., that’s 3 deaths in 5 yrs) . . . . . In the lockup in Port Washington, Wis., pervert James Lala asked inmate Corey Wilson what he thought of Woody Allen’s marrying his girlfriend’s daughter ("Perverted," said Wilson), which apparently hit Lala too close to home, and, uh, a brawl ensued.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Lance Rushton, 37, got off with a 45-day jail sentence for the crime of photo-editing porn shots by putting on them faces of his own family members and fellow Mormon church members.

NOTW Lite
Exxon/Mobil served its 17-yr customer, Frank Van Buren, as scheduled, with two cards to replace the ones about to expire—but then, following that, two more boxes of the same card, 1,000 cards in each box . . . . . The interesting thing is not that Fort Lauderdale, Fla., inmate Terry Alexander was convicted of ostentatious wanking behind bars (his third alleged incident) but that, when you have a trial on a charge like that, lawyers simply must ask prospective jurors about their own habits . . . . . Nothing like a ceremonial virgin to bring good luck to a big celebration somewhere in the Third World, but this was in, er, no cheap shots now, New Jersey: The Quik Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning even went so far as to cancel its inclement-weather insurance, so hopeful it was that the virgin (Victoria Brumfield, 28) would drive away the clouds.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
Two managers at the Small Business Administration are about to be honored for their work in clearing up that nearly-12,000-loan backlog stemming from Hurricane Katrin—oh, wait a minute, no, they’re under investigation, because apparently the only thing they did to eliminate the backlog was just to cancel all the loans outright.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Here’s an evergreen to tide you over ‘til Yr Editor can get back to these things next week: the maniacal "Joe Caster"’s site for photographing delectable young women wearing casts. Totally safe for work (but questions will be raised).

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Joe Littrell, MaDonna Barnes, Laura O’Neal.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Suspicions Confirmed: Hindus have a god for everything, because last weekend in Malaysia there was a five-day celebration for the Goddess Bahuchara Mataji, whose headquarters is in India and who has other duties, but at this particular celebration, she was the deity for transsexuals.

Civilization in Decline
Practice begins next week for the Oklahoma State football team, and so far, that will include star linebacker Chris Collins, despite the fact that he’s been under indictment for 3 yrs for a DNA-backed charge of at least statutory-raping a drunk 12-yr-old girl . . . . . Alcohol, the Great Equalizer: A 21-yr-old genius student at MIT, probably twice as smart as you and with twice as many friends as you, who was in NYC for the summer on an internship, apparently got drunk and fell, fatally, off of his apartment house . . . . . First there was Monday’s 5-Star Special on promiscuous labeling of people as "sex" offenders, and now this: An F-State sheriff has insisted on potential sex-offender-labeling punishment for a 21-yr-old road-rager who bare-mooned a carful of people, when the carful included a 14-yr-old boy.

The Human Condition Today
Family values: A Wisconsin couple left the woman's 7-yr-old son home alone several times, locked up, with only a bucket to dump in, while they watched Green Bay Packers’ games on TV at a casino, and they could’ve hired a sitter if they hadn’t blown so much money on a house full of Packer memorabilia . . . . . This was the plan: Five Chinese men embezzled the equivalent of $6.7M, then they’d play lotteries so they could, er, pay back the $6.7M out of their generous legitimate winnings, but, naturally, they lost every last fen . . . . . Arrested in Gary, Ind., for beating his wife: Rev. Robert Nichols, an anger-management counselor . . . . . A round-eyed former Mitsubishi executive has sued the company for firing him (attributed to his not bonding well with his Japanese superiors) because, at a 2005 evening out, they kept teasing him at a bathhouse about how hung he is . . . . . Russell Tavares, 25, was sentenced to 7 yrs in the pen for losing control of himself, to wit, getting mad that a man called him a "nerd" in a chatroom and driving from Virginia to Texas just to set fire to the guy’s trailer . . . . . Less harmful, but perhaps still a little too obsessed for Yr Editor’s taste: Norm and Lexy Stevenson leave no stone unturned to get back their pet, er, parakeet . . . . . F-State Logic: Authorities in Pensacola said Cheveon Ford, 21, made 292 false calls to 911 (with the only explanation being that he didn’t have any minutes left on his cell phone and that 911 calls are free).

Your Daily Loser
Kevin Rich, 40, of Oneida, N.Y., was arrested three separate times Sunday in the space of three hours, for, respectively, panhandling, disorderly conduct, and soliciting money under false pretenses.

NOTW Lite
Researchers at Hong Kong Polytechnic University have written up a prescription for better-fitting bras, because their data show that a "woman’s breast is a very complex 3-D geometry," and chest/cup isn’t nearly as nuanced as overall build; breast volume; inner, outer and lower breast shape; height; and "gradient and orientation."

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Friday would be a good day to post another one.

NOTW, The Blog
Today's post was late because of ISP failure . . . . . First, a TV station in China found a restaurant that made yummy dishes with actual cut-up cardboard as filler, and then the gov’t put the TV station managers in jail for scaring people with a hoax report (with the managers supposedly apologizing for setting the restaurant up), and now it turns out many think the station got it right the first time . . . . . And the owners of Weekly World News (The Onion for the trailer-park-and-hair-curler set) are shutting down the print (supermarket) edition next month; thus, you’ll only see website versions of stories like the woman who got pregnant after misapplying her contraceptive jelly by spreading it on her toast.

Newsrangers: Joe Littrell, Larry Ellis Reed, Ginger Katz, Ken Vermette, Eric Gibbs, Brian Wilkinson
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.
[Yr Editor's usually-reliable cable service was out this morning from 4:05 a.m.-10:10 a.m., which coincides exactly, and I mean exactly, with my prime workday. I will post by 5 p.m. New York time today.]

Monday, July 23, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
Child-sex hysteria is back: In McMinnville, Ore., the prosecutor is falling all over himself to prove his sensitivity to how devastating "sexual assault" can be to girls, "life-altering," in fact, and therefore must be severely punished—and that’s why he’s filed 10-yr-max, sex-offender-for-life-labeling charges against two boys who were goofing on the latest trendy horseplay at Patton Middle School: "butt-slap" (apparently engaged in by both genders). (And if the boys’ aim had been bad, and the slaps had landed 10-12 inches north, in the back, they’d be looking at a max of, what, a day’s detention?) Despite numerous howls from the community, and from counselors who deal with real sex abuse, the prosecutor, and the parents of the two fragile "victims," are not backing down, and the boys’ parents’ legal fees mount.

Civilization in Decline
Killing ourselves with "fairness": A Maryland judge has dismissed, with no re-files allowed, a child-rape case against a Liberian immigrant just because, supposedly, he speaks a rare tribal language for which no translators were available (and thus, a "fair" trial is impossible, and we can’t wait forever for a translator to be found). However: (1) The perp attended high school and community college here; (2) he spoke English well enough to the cops when he was telling them he was innocent; (3) the Washington Post reporter did a better job than the court clerk in finding translators who could have worked the case; (4) the court actually found three translators, but each had a way out (including one who was set to work but freaked out when she studied the charges); (5) the court had a 4th translator in the wings, but the judge said it was too late.

The Human Condition Today
The F-State version of identity theft: It was by a woman’s former female roommate, who turned out to be an adam’s-apple-less man, who started to fix herself up just like the victim, and who was a prostitute, and called up the victim’s boss and said he was she and would the boss please bail her (him) out . . . . . Police in Bolton, England, say a genuine 12-yr-old thug, Oliver Clinch, is guilty of at least 60 crimes and probably double that, and Oliver says if any neighbors have a problem with him, they’re going down . . . . . A Darwin near-miss: Brianna Sanchez, 19, will survive (presumably, to breed) after she set herself on fire by "playing" with a cigarette lighter while pumping gasoline . . . . . But a Darwin success: A 16-yr-old Pennsylvania kid touring abandoned Mexican mines will not be breeding, as he tried to jump across a 10-ft open shaft and missed [Ed.: or maybe he’s not dead at all and just wanted to start his life all over, because he supposedly fell into a deep well of arsenic and water, and his body, if there was one, may never be recovered] . . . . . Chicagoland woman Amy Mueller tried to climb onto the bar to dance at Samy’s place but fell and broke her ankle, which, of course, is all Samy’s fault . . . . . A French painter was so overcome at a dominantly-white painting on display at a gallery that she kissed it ("The artist left this white [space] for me") and was arrested for defacing it with her lipstick . . . . . A Las Vegas mother forced a hospital to give her back the placenta from her daughter’s birth, but she now thinks she can survive post-partum depression without having to actually eat it.

Your Daily Loser
A campus postal carrier at Eastern Illinois Univ. freaked out when he saw the oversized, tattered, stained envelope with the poorly-written address (to the admissions office), the misspellings, and no return address, and the bomb squad was called, but it turned out to be just an ordinary college application by a kid whose chances of success in life, Yr Editor guesses, are small.

NOTW Lite
Too Many Punchlines to Deal With: (Well, not as many as from the Bush colonoscopy) (1) An F-Stater thought the problem in the neighborhood was those Iraqis running through the yards, and so he fired off 10 to 12 rounds at them, and of course there were no Iraqis (and probably no non-Iraqis, either) and (2) French neurologists discovered that a gov’t bureaucrat operates with a brain that’s a record-low 50-75% the size of a normal person’s and that he appears to function fine . . . . . Sounds like a joke: The school district in Houston, Tex., has refused to release the Belleaire High School baseball team’s batting averages, claiming that would violate federal privacy law. (Seriously)

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
The City of Phoenix, Ariz., apparently didn’t get the memo about screening baggage and packages during non-passenger hours at Sky Harbor Airport (midnight to 4:30 a.m., which is when federal screeners take over and start screening again) . . . . . A GAO report says the Dept. of Agriculture uses the honor system to weed out dead farmers from its subsidy program, and surviving kin are only so happy to continue to swear that the recently-expired "farmer" is "actively engaged" in the business . . . . . But, hey, USDA are amateurs compared to the Omaha (Neb.) Public Schools Retirement System, which recently discovered that it had been paying Winifred Brinker a pension for 27 yrs now, which is 20 yrs after her death, and they don't really know yet where the money went . . . . . The NY Post says the special $1B FEMA insurance fund that pays claims against New York City stemming from 9-11 has so far paid out, er, $45K (to a carpenter who fell off of a ladder) but has incurred lawyers’ expenses of $47M.

Updates
Oops! Just as yesterday’s NOTW column debuted, with that story from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on expensive playsets that parents seem to think their kids can’t live without, the Philadelphia Inquirer published a much, much, much better piece . . . . . The Washington Post yesterday had a long piece on that AA chapter in the Washington, D.C., area—the one Yr Editor mentioned a while back as apparently having a one-step program for young women, with that step being to have sex with the older men sponsors.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
According to legend, some guy bought a huge barn in Portugal, thinking it was empty, and it contained 180 deluxe, expensive, old, etc., cars, i.e., every one of them better than what you’re driving, and here are the photos. But actually, Snopes.com says it was just a collector who had bought and stored the cars, and the part about the lucky buy was tacked on. But, really: A guy owns these, and they’re sitting in a barn grabbing dust.

Newsrangers: Ken Vermette, Paul Music, Steve Dunn, Ginger Katz, Harry Farkas, Casey Hermanson
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
Foreign Policy magazine (not quite Foreign Affairs but still a serious journal) named the five stupidest Fatwas, and of course, our favorite (the breastfeeding one) is there. The one about not being able to look at your spouse naked is there, too, and especially because it was subsequently modified to make it OK to see each other as long as you don’t look directly at each other’s hoo-hahs.

Civilization in Decline
A Vancouver couple will have to live with their apartment’s infestation of bats for another six weeks or so because it’s illegal in Canada to disturb bats during schtupping season . . . . . This ol’ trick still works, apparently, but maybe only in the District of Calamity: You can steal time from a parking meter with a quarter on a string . . . . . Tough guy Derek Boogaard of the Nat’l Hockey League’s Minnesota Wild has opened a teenage summer camp specializing in teaching players to fight (Seriously) . . . . . The coming transgender showdown popped up in Arizona, where Scottsdale bar owner Tom Anderson is at a loss (Does he make his regular female customers endure transsexuals in the ladies’ room? How about transvestites who pretend? Does he check their equipment?).

The Human Condition Today
Not fair, in that she’s not-bad-looking (actually, sorta Dana Scully-like), and she’s a hard-working nurse, but it was just the "more than 100" cockroaches climbing all over the garbage in the back seat of her car, where her two toddlers were riding (and doing bodily functions) . . . . . Here’s what a 90-yr-old pervert looks like (Bonus: with a name from central casting) . . . . . Best headline: "Eight Die in Gun Battle Over Wild Fungus" (Reuters, from China) . . . . . A Steven Wright Joke Come to Life: Serena Yan, working out as a member of the Houston, Tex., 24 Hour Fitness center, got accidentally locked in when they closed up for the night ("not in a row!").

Your Daily Loser
Patrick Tribett, the Ohio paint huffer whose glittering-gold mug shot starred on the Internet in 2005, was arrested for public intox again (that’s at least five).

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Ehhh, Reuters says it has found an avid consumer of the "love dolls" made by Japan’s Orient Industry Company, selling for the equivalent of from $850 to $5,500 each (depending on quality of resemblance to the real thing), and the interview reveals he has a different gal for every day of the week.

NOTW Lite
Italy’s "Masters" games (entrants age 35 and older, up to, gulp, 90) will make sure the javelin-throwing competition is held way away from everything else . . . . . Right after the Roswell, N.M., celebration of 60 yrs since the aliens landed, Roswell Honda dealership suddenly found itself with 50,000 accidental "winners" of the $1,000 grand prize in a scratch-off promotion (Coincidence?).

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
WCBS-TV learned that when the NY city gov’t leases SUV’s, it pays, uh, well, $4,000 a month each (because it’s part of a city contract, and that’s what the contractor charges them) . . . . . And Cook County, Ill., was forced to eliminate the job of its award-winning nurse practitioner because she didn’t have enough seniority to satisfy the union contract.

Updates
That 10-yr-old Nepalese "goddess" who got "fired" for visiting the U.S. has been re-hired, provided she does some rehab . . . . . The Los Angeles Times checks up today on Ed and Elaine Brown of Plainfield, N.H., who are the couple holed up for six months now, suffering that disorder brought on by being born with the Tax Gene, i.e., they welcome death as long as they get to make some point or other about taxes.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Coming again soon.

Newsrangers: Joe Littrell, Michael Lewyn, Ginger Katz, Stefan Palys, George Ronczy, Nick DiNardo.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Yr Editor is not of the belief that seems to regard white people’s use of the ol’ n-word as tantamount to steering airliners into the World Trade Center, but on the other hand, here’s the 80-yr-old white chairman of the board of Roger Williams University in Bristol, R.I., admitting he said it in a board meeting but that he’d never used the word before in his entire life and that he must’ve picked it up from watching "television" or, better yet, listening to "rap music." (Bonus: He said he should be judged by his whole career, including having given "$7 million" to the University, and the school responded that, er, $4.2 million of that must have gotten lost in the mail.)

[REMINDER: NOTW Daily is temporarily only half the man it used to be, i.e., Mon-Wed-Fri only]

Civilization in Decline
Wisconsin is said to be the first state to introduce a bill specifying in detail what a divorcing couple’s rights are regarding custody of their pets.

The Human Condition Today
Nasir Farrakhan (son of Minister "Calypso Louie" Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam) was assessed punitive damages for crashing into a couple four yrs ago while driving daddy’s Hummer, and he appealed, contending that he was merely "asleep during the entire trip" down the Indiana Toll Road, rather than doped on Vicodin and other drugs whose paraphernalia were in the Hummer (but federal judge Philip Simon wrote that Nasir was lying through his teeth [Ed.: the judge used the uptown legal word "unpersuasive"]) . . . . . An Australian man commandeered a privately-owned tank and wiped out seven cell phone towers, on account of, naturally, cell phone waves having messed with his mind . . . . . And an Australian rugby player finally got a diagnosis for the constant head pains: A collision on the field four months ago left an opponent’s tooth embedded, deeply, just above his eye . . . . . But at least the tooth wasn’t alive, as were the five "squirming fly larvae" in Aaron Dallas’s head after he picked them up in Belize and which a doctor finally diagnosed and removed back home in Colorado . . . . . In training for the upcoming Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, she runs 40 minutes a day and does 200 sit-ups, and that’s because she’s a prostitute upping her endurance for the expected surge in business during the Games . . . . . Alexander Ocampo was charged with DUI in South Carolina, with a major piece of evidence being his not having noticed that when he took a reckless turn, his passenger flew out the window.


Your Daily Losers
A little knowledge can be dangerous, er, in the hands of nincompoops, like the four Oklahoma inmates who were indicted for a grand scheme that went nowhere but which they apparently took quite seriously. They "copyrighted" their names, then demanded millions of dollars from the warden for using the names without permission, then for leverage against the "millions," filed liens against his property and hired someone to seize his cars and freeze his bank accounts.


NOTW Lite
Who knew that koalas were such dogs and hoochies (up to half in two Australian states having tested positive for chlamydia) . . . . . Sounds like a joke: In India, the winner of a condom company’s "taste test" was the one flavored in tobacco and betel nut . . . . . A routine payment dispute between a sex worker and her client, except at morning rush hour in East St. Louis, Ill., with the half-clothed women (top half) having jumped in his car and commenced beating on him even as he tried to drive through the bustling streets.


Professor Music’s Weird Links
WorldNetDaily.com is usually just a heavily-tilted conservative news site, but it deserves a Pulitzer, Yr Editor sez, for its periodically updated compilation of female teachers caught having sex with their underage students, and so far, the total is 105 [Safe For Work, except maybe for the politics].

Newsrangers: Raul Stone-Cousley, Tom Barker, James Wicht, Bob Pert, Bruce Townley.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
Bad enough that Evian has a 2,900 percent markup over tap water, but there’s a “water bar” in Chappaqua, N.Y., offering 80 brands, with one best-seller going for $30/bottle and another at $55/bottle (The owner, un-ironically complaining about the potential market: “There are so many people that are uneducated about water”)

[REMINDER: This is a six-day-a-week feature, even though, for a little while, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays get the day off.]

Civilization in Decline
The Georgia Bd. of Pardons and Paroles meets today, with one last chance to spare the condemned Troy Anthony Davis from the death chamber Tuesday; his cop-killing conviction was based on no physical evidence at all but merely nine “eyewitness” IDs, of which seven have recanted, and technicalities have beaten down his appeals so far . . . . . “Allahu Akbar!” is what Terry Mangum might have screamed as he plunged the knife into Kenneth Cummings, but actually, it wasn’t that God he was serving; Mangum said he planned to kill a gay man in the name of the Christian God after “thousands and thousands and thousands of hours” of Bible-reading [Ed.: Well, either that, or Mangum sought a gay bar adventure, changed his mind in progress, killed the only witness, and then when he got caught, thought piety was his best bet] . . . . . Yr Editor suggests bodyguards, immediately, for Australian Jeffrey Lee, because (a) he’s the only surviving tribal owner of land up toward Darwin that (b) contains 14,000 tons of uranium [value: almost US$5B] yet (c) he appears sincerely interested in keeping the land undeveloped and pristine . . . . . . . . . . A N’awlins-area injustice from 1996, but it’s still not yet undone: A couple’s house was sold from under them for a $1.96 overdue tax bill that even due diligence on their part would not have discovered, and there’s still an appeal standing in their way to get the title back . . . . . A New York City mother sees that her lazy-ass son has flunked 7th grade and now is absolutely outraged at the school system (well, er, she’s outraged that they’re nonetheless promoting the little slacker to 8th grade).

The Human Condition Today
From Reno, Nev., here are your basic super-24/7-Dungeons & Dragons players, which is fine, except that they have two starved and filthy toddlers that they were ignoring the whole time (and it’s a wonder they even found the time to make the babies) . . . . . A city councilwoman in a town near Orlando, and her husband, are in trouble for roughing up their 18-yr-old daughter in an exorcism (but dad said it was a simple “anointing” with oil) . . . . . Welsh authorities have tried to get tougher on Amy Beth Dellamura, 44, because she’s tied up rescuers (50 jump-into-the-ocean suicide attempts in 5 years), costing maybe £1M (about US$2M) . . . . . The more positive and community-minded Briton, Craig Jex, has established a dating website for those, like him, with Irritable Bowel Syndrome . . . . . Best lede (Atlanta Journal-Constitution): “Three friends who were goofing around in an apartment with a loaded AK-47 Wednesday night . .” . . . . . And here’s golden justice (but you may already know about this ‘cause it’s all over the place): Last week a woman and her brat were booted off a Continental flight (he kept endless-loop-screaming “bye bye plane” until the flight attendant went nuts on him), and Friday morning she brought the little angel to Good Morning America to show how unfair that flight attendant was, and basically [here’s the video] the angel screamed and terrorized Diane Sawyer until she had him carted offstage.

Your Daily Loser
Cody Wirick was arrested in Weber County, Utah, for possession of bomb materials, but, according to this mugshot, he more resembles an escapee from Area 51.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Even if you’ve been reading Newza Da Weird for a long time, you may not have run into a piece of work like Nizameddine Hassan Chokr, 51, of Costa Mesa, Calif. (now residing at a state facility in Vacaville), who, according to the account by the Yr Editor’s favorite reporter, R. Scott Moxley of the OC Weekly, says he is not a low-life serial public masturbator but the constant victim of set-ups by women who’ve hit on him and been rejected. He’s just so irresistible, he says (“I am the best ever”), that women turn horny on sight of him.

NOTW Lite
Deep inside Congo (but not deep enough that a researcher couldn’t find them) are huge chimps that natives say eat lions (or at least, how could they sleep on the ground with impunity in lion country?) . . . . . Another challenging news report: A now-well-traveled Washington Post tale last week had a gun-toting mugger bursting into a backyard cookout but being immediately won over by the hostess’s charm and some damn good wine (or at least that’s what she persuaded the D.C. police and WP staff writer Allison Klein happened).

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
It turns out Rhode Island’s month-old law, to require treating 17-yr-old criminal defendants as adults, was not any crackdown on juvenile crime but rather just because it costs only $40k/yr to house an adult in prison but $98k to baby-gloves-house a kid.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Prof. Music’s been a-filin’, but Yr Editor ain’t been a-editin’.

Newsrangers: Steve Clark, Joe Littrell, Mark Neunder.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
Fla. state Rep. Bob Allen was arrested in a men’s room sex hustle and immediately went into O.J.-Bronco-style guilty-and-desperate mode, but apparently overnight has come to the conclusion that he can beat the rap, and hence, the whole thing is now just a "misunderstanding," [LINK CORRECTED] and he’s not resigning, and of course, he "can’t talk about this" right now. [Ed.: 99 percent of the time, when an accused perp says "I can’t talk about it now," it means he did it, or at least he did something very close to it, but believes he has a fair chance at trial-tactically winning]

[Reminder: NOTW Daily is published six days a week, only not right now. Figure, Mon-Wed-Fri only, for a little while longer.]

Civilization in Decline
One of Oregon’s staunchest, strictest (for kids) anti-drug school districts has a different view of things for principals who smoke dope: It’s not so bad . . . . . Muslim women in Mombasa, Kenya, are ticked now that the city’s prostitutes have taken to wearing full-body dresses called buibuis (which the Muslims must wear) to make it easier for them to blend in on the street . . . . . In New York City, to own your own parking space will set you back as much as $225k (and probably with an additional $50/month "maintenance" fee) . . . . . Providence, R.I., police busted a super-efficiently-run street drug business (shifts, overtime pay, ledgers, records) (Bonus: All the principals were also drawing welfare).

The Human Condition Today
All hail Cincinnati judge Ted Berry! Perp Ivan Boykins, upon receiving a 30-day sentence for trespassing, responded, "F*ck you," whereupon Judge Berry retorted, "F*uck you!" . . . . . Police in Fort Worth, Tex., caught a couple of aggressive Christian teenagers, who belong to a Christian "fight club" and whose weapon of choice to express their anger at societal deterioration is apparently fire . . . . . Not Our Fault, say the parents of the 16-yr-old girl in North Carolina who married her 40-yr-old coach; it was the school’s fault, and we’re suing (even though the parents signed over permission for the marriage) . . . . . Busted: A Ugandan pastor was caught importing an electric-shock machine that would enable him to touch objects and impart a spark or two, which seems perfect for wowing the nonbelievers . . . . . A homeowner’s report of a stray "blue flame" every time his wife lit up a cigarette provoked the fire chief to say he’ll be right over and for heaven’s sake, don’t light any more matches! (But that instruction was so alarming that the wife had to have a cigarette to calm her nerves, and she died in the explosion) (Bonus: It was actually an all-electric house) . . . . . Two black shoppers at Toys-R-Us in New York City were asked to show their receipts upon leaving the store, and since they didn’t notice any white people at the time being asked, well, that’ll be $200M each, please.

NOTW Lite
Basra, Iraq, has enough problems, what with warring factions battling for the city ever since British troops stood down, but now it has another because badgers are running loose (which seems much worse than the recent infestation of porcupines at the nuclear research facility in Dimona, Israel) . . . . . Now there’s a reversible birth control implant for male dogs, for those owners who just can’t decide whether they want pups or not (and also, said one vet, because some owners "have an emotional attachment to their dog’s testicles. They think it’s their dog’s God-given right to have his hairy jewel bag with all the goodies in it").

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
An undercover GAO investigation of how hard it is to get a Nuclear Regulatory Commission license to handle radioactive materials found that, sometimes, not so hard (a "pre-9-11 mentality," according to U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman, who said the agency appears to be geared up to stop Chernobyls and not, for example, dirty bombs in big cities) (Bonus: One licensee was just a post office box in West Virginia) . . . . . The Associated Press found "dozens" of military documents freely available on the Internet that gov’t agencies have refused to hand over to the public because they were too sensitive and potentially injurious to troop movement and nat’l security.

Updates
Wednesday’s Daily Loser now, it turns out, might have gotten his manhood slashed some other way than was reported, and the restaurant has designated him for assignment (i.e., firing) . . . . . Zimbabwe (inflation "officially" at about 4,500 percent, and independently at about 9,000 percent) continued its path of determining the worst possible response to the crisis and then doing that, and so imposed price cuts, meaning pretty soon there’ll be nothing left to buy (and let the "unrest" begin!).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Soon, real soon.

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Ed McCarthy, Michael Lewyn, Ken Vermette, Bruce Townley, James Reed, Paul Di Filippo
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Revelation from the trial (and guilty verdicts) against the four 2005 London follow-up suicide bombers (whose attack failed two weeks after the big July 7 subway attacks): The failure was due to ringleader Muktah Said Ibrahim’s inability to add correctly when calculating the ratios of ingredients, rendering the bombs harmless. There was evidence that Ibrahim failed math in school.

[Reminder: This is a 6-day-a-week web page, only not right now (being Mon-Wed-Fri for a while)]

Civilization in Decline
Making Alberto Gonzales look like a statesman: Julian Moti was appointed attorney general of the Solomon Islands, despite being on the lam from child-sex charges in Australia (Moti is a good buddy of the Solomons’ prime minister) . . . . . A hospital in Kuala Lumpur made the news by admitting that its doctors and nurses fail to wash their hands, gasp, "40 percent" of the time, but the naive editors at Reuters somehow missed the memo that that’s about the rate in many U.S. hospitals . . . . . When China has problems, they tend to be b-i-i-i-g problems, like the number of mice that overran a lake area in Hunan province, er, 2,000,000,000 of the rascals (But officials in Luoyang maybe went too far with their bounty on dead flies in town, i.e., the equivalent of 7 cents each) . . . . . Adding to the benefits of wearing the hijab (other than the benefit of pleasing God): The British juror in her 20s who, until she was ratted out, listened to her music player during the trial [Ed.: Other benefits: bank robbery disguise (NOTW Daily, 7-5-2007) and, well, he could have used a hijab, that wanking Oklahoma judge Donald Thompson (NOTW 858, 7-18-2004)] . . . . . Another of those examples of how legislatures are composed basically, not of problem-solvers, but of slackers: Nashville’s Tennessean calculated that 42 percent of all legislative items this past session were just "resolutions," mostly praising this and that.

The Human Condition Today
Your Daily Schadenfreude: There was a court hearing in Sydney on Monday for the 25-yr-old woman, diagnosed as mentally ill last yr, who just (allegedly, but–) killed her mom and dad, who were Scientologists and had thus prevented her from being treated by psychiatrists [CORRECTION: Dad and sister dead, mom wounded] . . . . . In Greeley, Colo., two teenagers cut the top out of their car and drove it, Evel Knievel-style, off of a ramp into a 25-ft-deep pit of water, to half-predictable results, i.e., one survived . . . . . Your latest hit-and-run where the driver is so sh*t-faced that he ignores the fact that the victim is stuck in his windshield . . . . . God’s Will: Lightning (from a blue sky) struck down a guy in Miami, selling Bibles door to door.

Your Daily Loser
An unidentified 45-yr-old restaurant worker in Cambridge, Mass., got stabbed in his manhood by robbers, bloodying it, but merely wrapped a tourniquet around it and returned to work for several more hours before seeking treatment.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
John Worman, 49, charged with filming himself having sex with girls and infants, was permitted trial-preparation access (with his lawyer at his side and FBI agents at the door) to the 11,000 videos in evidence, but according to the prosecutor, Worman seemed to be smiling as he reviewed them, even rewinding, zooming in on the private parts.

NOTW Lite
Coooool: a 1,500-lb. bowling ball rolling downhill and knocking over everything in sight in downtown Meadville, Pa. . . . . . Let us all praise Doc Johnson! A surgery professor at Northwestern Univ. med school is marketing her own anatomical organ models, following her frustration with all the incorrect supply-house models and her experience having to buy up dildos from sex shops to use in her classes . . . . . The central Brazil resort town of Palmas installed a steel mesh net to keep bathers safe from piranha bites (180 so far, but since it’s a man-made lake, they suspect they’re all from one piranha, that little booger) . . . . . A British firm says it can take body fat with stem cells, insert it into women’s chests, and grow ta-tas . . . . . And in Statesboro, Ga., Mitchell Hendrix, 18, who was about to be burned alive in a car crash, survived, not because the fire truck got there quickly enough to save him, but because a septic company pump truck happened upon the scene, and one of the guys doused the fire with 1,500 gallons of raw sewage.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Nope, not today, either.

NOTW, The Blog
This Mon-Wed-Fri thing may not work out very well, either. I tried to cut out the stories that were just semi-interesting to me, hoping to list just a few that were really interesting. But that turned out to be a lot, and there are still five or six others that I think I might come to realize are really interesting, too. See, I’m supposed to be on modified R&R now, and I’m still reaching for the Xanax.

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Brian Bjolin, Emory Kimbrough, Diane Gunnels-Rowley
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
The New Jihadists: (1) At America’s largest "Christian paintball park," the ritual includes pre-combat prayer and no out-loud cussing, and a players’ association that condones warring on Sundays (instead of church) ("I’ve looked at the Bible . . . the Bible is filled with combat as a topic," said one guy). (2) The Pope said that priests could, if their parishioners felt strongly enough about it, conduct mass with pre-Vatican II text, part of which includes prayers to help those poor, misguided Jews get to heaven.

[Reminder: NOTW Daily is published daily, except now, when it's published Mon-Wed-Fri.]

Civilization in Decline
You can give the Katy, Tex., school district credit for not adopting one of those one-size-fits-all "zero tolerance" policies, but not so fast: A 6th-grader wrote "I love Alex" on a wall with a marker, which is (according to a 5-level offense scale) a "4" (which includes making terroristic threats, possessing dangerous drugs, and assault with bodily injury), and it’s a felony, requiring mandatory reassignment to one of those schools for losers . . . . . An independent panel of doctors concluded that, of all the cases appealed from insurance-company denials of care in New York last yr, about half shouldn’t have been denied.

The Human Condition Today
An assistant administrator at a Pennsylvania school, who had heard of an epidemic of titty-twisting going on, saw his own chest being approached by a kid’s hand and instinctively punched the kid, resulting in the man’s, er, retirement . . . . . The delusional John Mark Karr (JonBenet Ramsey’s killer wannabe) was busted for fighting with his dad (age 91) and Karr’s girlfriend (age not given, but perhaps an adult) . . . . . Scottish dentist Joanna Chyzy has lost her license, due to "dexterity" issues, e.g., that time she ran a needle up into a guy’s nose . . . . . Joel Zsebenazy first intended to buy that carton of Newport cigarettes, but then figured he could just run out the door with them (though he failed to remember that a few seconds earlier, he had given the clerk his driver’s license in an age-check) . . . . . Glorious Pittsburgh: (1) the annual furries’ convention (but only 10 percent were full-fledged animal wannabes with the other 2,400 attendees being fans and fellow-travelers) and (2) in general, the U.S.’s hot spot for championship marbles . . . . . Jacob Johnson said, of course, that police overreacted when they detained him at gunpoint at a San Diego bank, just because he was wearing a large belt buckle in the shape of handgun (But what ya gonna do if you’re a customer or employee in the bank: Approach a potential bank robber and ask to examine him up close to see whether he’s got a real gun?).

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
"Uncle Jack" Sylvia, 70, busted in Fairhaven, Mass., for feeling up girls aged 4 and 9 (activity which he called "fluffing").

NOTW Lite
After initial reluctance, St. Peter the Apostle school in Melbourne, Australia, decided it would enroll Alex Hell’s 5-yr-old son, Max Hell . . . . . In East Dublin, Ga., this past weekend: the annual Redneck Games (mud-pit belly-flopping, an "armpit serenade," etc.) . . . . . James Coldwell, 49, was arrested for bank robbery in Manchester, N.H., despite being cleverly disguised as a, er, tree (and bring on the puns: it was a branch bank; he went out on a limb with that disguise; police were stumped, etc.).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Nope, not today.

NOTW, The Blog
(1) I appreciate very much the sweet notes that people have sent about my malaise, all so far encouraging me to take a break. However, I can’t really do that because what’s also going on now is that I’m sorta auditioning for an Internet Big who is trying to decide whether to sponsor NOTW Daily as a daily feature. My dilemma, specifically, is do I publish 6 columns of diluted quality during my malaise, or do I publish, oh, 3 columns a week of higher quality? I’ve preliminarily decided on the latter, but it has to be temporary, which is why you’ll continue to see the annoying "reminders" on every post that NOTW Daily is really a 6-day feature, even though it might be a month or longer before it returns to that. Of course, if the Internet Big decides he wants me, Yr Editor will snap to attention and do whatever is requested. (Yes, when money is on the table, Yr Editor is nothing more than slime.)
(2) Ehhh, here’s a poorly-sourced story from London’s Daily Mail that has several elements of a true story but not how the hell a London newspaper found out about a police matter in Cologne, Germany. There’s no German dateline, no German tipper of the story, no credit to another German news source. Anyway, a German woman has charged that Cologne psychotherapist Peter Blaeker exploited her multiple-personality disorder by having sex with one of them but getting another to clean for him and yet another to lend him money, and of course he can’t talk about it because each of the three patients has the privilege of doctor-patient confidentiality.

Newsrangers: Maggie Mack, Steve Miller, Joe Littrell.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Saturday’s 5-Star Special
Italy’s president-once-removed, Silvio Berlusconi, delivering a political lecture, paid tribute to his role model, Margaret Thatcher, thought by others to be merely the Iron Lady but by Silvio as "una bella gnocca," with the most popular street translation of "gnocca" being "vulva."

Civilization in Decline
The UK is starting its 25,000-strong early-release program to ease prison overcrowding, and they’re so excruciatingly fair about it that they’re also cashing out the inmates’ room and board that the prison would otherwise be paying during the remainder of their sentences (Seriously) . . . . . The U.S. Court of Appeals in Cincinnati ruled that people who believe they’ve been unconstitutionally eavesdropped on by the gov’t can’t get there from here: The plaintiffs who brought the lawsuit couldn’t prove they had been victimized, and if they had proof, another law forbids them from telling anyone about it (including a judge) . . . . . A Canadian mother scoots us along on the continuum toward the eventual mass warehousing of frozen embryos, from women and girls everywhere, for whatever purpose (maybe a Wal-Mart frozen embryo section!).

The Human Condition Today
Cockfighting gamers challenge New Mexico’s new ban by pointing out that it conflicts with an 1848 federal treaty that supposedly guaranteed that New Mexicans could keep their "cultural" lifestyle . . . . . U.S. Army Maj. Timothy Pentaleri, 42, apparently intended to beat up his former girlfriend, judging by the geek-like list of reminders to himself ("club her hard") and the flow chart of how it was all going down, along with his bag o’ goodies (condoms, gloves, shoe polish, Clorox wipes, K-Y, camera, turkey baster, nylon soc– . . turkey baster?) . . . . . After a 100-mph police chase, the perp’s car finally flipped over, allowing the cops to advance on it and pounce on the, er, 11-yr-old girl driver (Bonus: She was drunk) . . . . . The city manager of Keizer, Ore., has apologized that the concrete barriers he ordered (from a catalog) to protect pedestrians on downtown streets look so much like phalluses, as you can plainly see [Safe For Work, unless you’re from Keizer, Ore.] . . . . . Behold Jennifer Parr, 23! Two hours after a woman had closed on selling her house, the DUI Parr crashed into it, and when the seller scrambled to see what happened, she encountered Parr, "covered in blood, cigarette in one hand and cell phone in the other [wrote the Orlando Sentinel]," and casually asked the seller, "Do you have a light? I’m on house arrest."

Your Daily Loser
Tony Hicks was sent to a Knoxville, Tenn., area hospital on July 1 after being hit by a car, and got out on July 2, and went back in later that day after being roughed up by a burglar in his home, and got out on July 3, and went back in again later that day after police shot him during a suspected robbery.

NOTW Lite
A British woman entered her sponge cake in a contest and won 2nd place, tempered only by the fact that she was the only entrant . . . . . Travis Teeples got the crap beat out of him in a Boise, Idaho, bar (mug shot), even though he had gotten off to a crescent-wrench-to-the-face head start . . . . . Is the cure worse than the disorder: 15-yr-old boy in Scotland claims his nasty asthma has vanished, now that he has learned to play the bagpipes . . . . . But in professional science research by a Scotsman, a University of Edinburgh professor tells what she’s learned about the nuances of how fish process information.

Updates
The Westboro Baptist Phelps Family Chronicles: Shirley (Rev. Fred’s daughter), 49, was charged with 4 misdemeanors, including 2 for being a bad mom, for allowing her son, 10, to stomp on a U.S. flag during a demonstration in Nebraska (but, to her rescue: the ACLU!)

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Baggage handler John Smeaton has become an Internet hero for beating up one of the Glasgow Airport perps last weekend. (There is confusion over which Scottish Jack Bauer landed the most glorious kicks to the huevos, though; it might have been cab driver Alex McIlveen, who said he tore a tendon.) Smeaton gives good quote, e.g, "You come to Glasgow, we don’t stand for it. We’ll just set aboot ye." And now, there are "What Would John Smeaton Do?" memorabilia, and jokes (Osama: "You told me John Smeaton was off on Saturdays"), and, er, Robert Burns-like poetry.

NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor has several items to write about, but as you know (from Thursday’s post), I’m awaiting a juice transfusion, which might arrive as soon as Monday.

Newsrangers: Ginger Katz, Randy Murphy, Phillip Choisser, Kathryn Wood.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
So, you meet this chick who is, she says, . . . a powerball winner, relative of a Motley Crue guitarist, Playboy model, multilingual interpreter in Washington, crisis negotiator for the LAPD, fiancĂ©e of Brian Wilson’s son, and the love child of John Lennon and Janis Joplin, and what to do? You marry her, of course, and give her rights to all your property and stuff.

[REMINDER: Yr Editor is not posting "daily" this week. See NOTW, The Blog (below)]

Civilization in Decline
Two Questions: (1) How, exactly, do you fire a "goddess," anyway? They’ve just fired the latest one in Nepal . . . . . (2) And why has this never happened before: Two men robbed a bank in Sarajevo merely wrapped in burqas . . . . . Apparently, the Mafia wiretaps of yesteryear yielded different code words than the terrorist wiretaps today, e.g., you never heard Sammy Bull talking about an "eggplant" or "go[ing] to the picnic" or "get[ting] married" (meaning to suicide-bomb), but that was Jose Padilla's world, they say . . . . . Another Question: If Congress required in 2002 that all meat and produce be labeled with the country of origin, so that we can decide whether we want to eat that Chinese-grown stuff, why hasn’t it happened yet (except for shrimp)? A: The big boys always win; the arrangements have been made . . . . . Afghanistan is of course the world leader in heroin poppy-growing, but the gov’t just announced an anti-smoking campaign, because, y’know, tobacco kills . . . . . On the other hand, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, where as recently as 2001, a fifth of all girls were still being deliberately overfed for beauty (it’s a tribal thing), the gov’t is sponsoring slim-downs . . . . . And, Grrrrr-owl, you sexy beast! (er, the Sexy Beast line of dog fragrances, by Renee Ryan).

The Human Condition Today
Ms. Kimber Johnson complained to the Scottsdale Tribune that her brand-new, expensive home in the country stinks because of that, that, that ol’ farm over there (that’s been there for years) and that they ought to do something about that manure . . . . . A man forced his ex-girlfriend’s 4-yr-old son to chug water, for the purpose of delivering clean urine for his upcoming test, but he overdid it, and the kid was hospitalized for water intox . . . . . A bar-exam failure is suing the Massachusetts Bar because he was morally distracted on the question that involved a (legal in Mass.) homosexual married couple . . . . . The ol’ Urban Legend Come to Life in California, with the goal having been the elimination of that wasps’ nest, and the result being the burning down of a mobile home, an outbuilding, a truck, a boat, and a trailer . . . . . The Beat of His Own Drum: John Moore, 67, has played golf nearly every day for years, by hitting long irons on the same grassy right-of-way on Interstate 275 in downtown Tampa, and hopes soon to make his first appearance ever on an actual golf course.

Your Daily Loser
Kwok Wai-ming, 49, of Hong Kong, is blind in his left eye thanks to girlfriend Po Shiu-fong’s poking him 6 yrs ago, and now they just had a fight, and she stabbed him in the right eye with a chopstick, and now he’s all-blind. (He said he had forgiven her for the left eye [a "love sacrifice"] but that this time, it’s over.)

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Aaron Meinhardt, 37, was accused of flashing girls around a community pool, but apparently had been incredulous at his arrest: "Am I allowed to satisfy myself?" he asked the cop. "It has been a long time since I have. What am I supposed to do, just keep it in?"

NOTW Lite
Frequent Third World Tragedy Comes to America: A farmer, his wife, 2 daughters, and a farm helper die when the farmer was overcome by methane in a manure pit, as were the other four as they came in to rescue him . . . . . And this metaphor, from the orderly mind of Cindy Sheehan (announcing she’ll lead a walk-a-thon to protest the sentence commutation of Scooter Libby): Cindy was going to quit the movement, but the Libby thing was "the straw that broke my camel’s back of exhausted ennui."

Update
The Antichrist, Jose de Jesus Miranda [NOTW M003, 4-29-2007], is not only getting kicked out of various countries for his anti-Catholic preaching, but he’s getting kicked out of his marital bed for his wandering rod and staff.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
will return on Saturday, probably

NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor is grappling with an unexpected problem with NOTW Daily. Enthusiasm, high. Energy, high. Availability, high. Population of people committing weird news, high. But what’s low is my writing productivity. At least a day or two a week, (1) everything I write looks the same to me, and (2) it seems doubly difficult to decide which stories to use (of all those I have browsed that morning and the evening before). I think I need a break and should begin writing three days a week instead of six. (I wrote three days a week in May, but that was different because I was ver-r-r-ry busy with another project during my "free" days. What I need now are days that are free-free.) So this is what happens in this Era of the Blog that you never saw during MainStreamNews print media days: The "blogger" (who provides you free content) decides, without benefit of a publisher or editor, that he’ll modify his schedule . . . and . . . he’ll tell you about it in personal detail (and you’ll read it because, well, you’re logged on, and it’s here). So, for a while, it’ll be Mon-Wed-Fri until maybe I get all juiced up again. I’ll still be sitting here every day, though, browsing my browser and reading my mail. Let’s see what happens. (This week only, though: Saturday posting, not tomorrow.)

Newsrangers: Gerald Sacks, Joe Littrell, Emory Kimbrough, Mark Neunder, Garry Swaffar, Paul Music.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
The reach of Global Warming: A glaciologist in India said GW’s at least partly responsible for the melting of the Amarnath stalagmite in the Himalayas, which is the phallic icicle that is one of Hindus’ holiest pilgrimage sites, as the symbol of the very phallic Lord Shiva. It’s only about 1/10th its original size, but still a worshipful 12 ft tall.

[REMINDER: Yr Editor probably will not post until Thursday. Probably. Ehh . . . maybe before then.]

Civilization in Decline
The Wages of Rumsfeld: The armored vehicles that are perhaps 4x as safe as Humvees but which Rummy always rejected, are now on a balls-out production schedule (Bonus: Joe Biden figured out that the delay maybe cost over 700 U.S. lives) . . . . . In our system of federalism, states are dynamic laboratories for federal solutions, y’know, like Alabama Gov. Riley’s call for statewide prayer to end the drought, and Oelwein, Iowa,’s Friday night "funeral procession" down main street to officially "bury" all negative thoughts about the town . . . . . Illinois Justice: Two guys planned to kill four people in 1985, but needed a stranger just to knock on the door to surprise them and so paid Charles Green $25 to do it. Murder mission accomplished, but guess which one of the three perps is the only one still in prison? . . . . . And speaking of justice, as Der Spiegel reports, all of the Nazi-era criminals have now been dealt with in Germany and have served their terms, except a couple of people charged with "treason" in 1944, because "treason" is a serious charge (except that the "treason" they committed were things like helping Jews escape).

The Human Condition Today
A Ponzi scheme in a small-town: 51 of the 121 victims lost amounts of $10 to $400 . . . . . It might be just the second time in history, said the FAA, but a window broke in flight last week in Idaho, and a guy got half-sucked-out of the plane . . . . . A challenging business model in Toronto: a pizza deliverer who includes a porno pic underneath every pie . . . . . A UK psychologist said she has evidence that babies start lying to their parents when they’re 6 months old, and that it goes downhill from there.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Arthur Friedman talked his wife into mate-swapping, and he apparently had a great time until she fell in love with one of the other swappers, and now Arthur is livid ("[The other guy] backstabbed me"). On the other hand, he sued the guy for "alienation of affection," and despite the case’s stench, a jury compromised at $4,802.87 (which of course didn't help the wife's confidence at all).

NOTW Lite
A murder verdict in Tucson, Ariz., but his given middle name isn’t Wayne (It’s Sweetie) . . . . . They’ve been trying for yrs to get Lonesome George, the Galapagos turtle, to mate, but it may be futile, says Swiss biologist Sveva Grigioni, who is apparently one of the world’s leading tortoise hand-jobbers . . . . . Longtime Sasquatch researcher Thomas Buckley died last week, which reminded us that from his one face-to-face with Bigfoot, Buckley said the thing really ought to have been named Bigbutt.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
A research institute announced, for the upcoming 40th birthday of the Freedom of Information Act, that the State Dept. still has 10 FOIA requests for records that have been pending for at least 15 yrs . . . . . Latest report card on Boston’s Big Dig: They’ve cut the leaks on the 4-yr-old tunnel to a mere 1,900,000 gallons a month . . . . . Canada and the U.S. are squabbling over ownership of Machias Seal Island, mainly for the rich lobster fishing around it, but a Maine lobsterman said get the gov’t out of the picture: "When you get a bunch of lobstermen in the same room, we can usually solve our problems. You know, half a gallon of rum, three hours, and usually we come out with a workable solution. But when governments get involved, someone always wants to one-up someone else to get a feather in their cap."

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Safe for Work (but maybe not for weak tummies): snapshots from the actual wedding of two dedicated hangers (as in, they like to suspend themselves from hooks)

Newsrangers: Joe Littrell, Tom Barker, Steve Miller, Mark Neunder, Ginger Katz.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.