Friday, November 30, 2007

Friday’s 5-Star Special
I'm afraid today's not very inspiring, either.

Civilization in Decline
Italian Marco Ahmetovic received a mostly-house-arrest sentence because, after all, he cooperated with authorities after his arrest for inebriatedly, fatally plowing into four teenagers, but now he’s using his home time to manufacture and market his own perfumes, watches, jeans, and sunglasses (though he says he doesn’t intend to profit) (though he has an agent who seems to think "non-profit" is an obscene word).

The Human Condition Today
Another armed robber not quite ready for prime time: Santos Zelaya, 21, ran off empty-handed after mugg-ee Reinaldo Herrera, 72, started beating on him . . . . . F State Crime Report: In Fort Pierce, a 300-lb. prostitute snatched a man’s wallet on the street and, furthermore, rode off on the man’s bicycle (Bonus: stale stock photo suggesting website editor is a robot) . . . . . More F State drama: Olester Duncan tried to get a 4-pack of Schlitz Malt Liquor down from a cooler’s shelf, and a can hit him in the head, which means "Lawsuit!" against Albertson’s supermarkets plus the distributor plus Pabst plus Miller plus Lakefront Brewery plus Stroh, because he suffered "serious and grievous" injuries, disability, disfigurement, mental anguish, and loss of capacity for joy (and his wife claims to be out hubby’s "services").

Your Daily Loser
Unclear on the Concept: Francis Rocca pleaded not guilty to armed robbery in Pittsfield, Mass., but it’ll be an uphill fight because the victim said he could easily ID the pimply-faced Rocca through his "disguise," which was a clear-plastic bag pulled over his head.

NOTW Lite
The Wall Street Journal reported a fascinating story Thursday about what some believe is the world’s best beer, and it’s made in severely limited quantity by Trappist monks in Westvleteren, Belgium (brewing it with a "slightly sweet, heavily alcoholic [up to 10%], fruity aftertaste"). The monks sell it for the equivalent of about $1.50 a bottle, but unless you wait outside the monastery gates on brewing day, you’ll be paying the equivalent of $15-$20 per . . . . . Manish Rajpurohit, 18, is OK now, but not last February when a bus crash left a 4-ft-long metal rail embedded in his noggin, from right between the eyes through the rear base of his skull (and it was out in the sticks of India, four hours from Bangalore and actual medical care) . . . . . The ultimate "found my [long-lost keepsake] years later" story: Aaron Giles’s childhood ID bracelet turned up 25 yrs later in a chicken gizzard.

Update
Ooooh, I hate to scoop myself, but this week a Mayville, Wis., commission turned down the request of a group home to house two miniature horses on the premises, for therapeutical purposes, as authorized under certain conditions by the federal Americans With Disabilites Act (but prohibited, under all conditions, apparently, by local zoning laws). All the residents had going for them, apparently, was that a doctor or two said the horses would help them, but the ADA, though lenient, requires more, said the commission. Now, then, I just scooped myself because NOTW M034, which will appear beginning Sunday, 12-2-2007, has a Vermont story of just about the same theme, but with the bonus that the resident has asserted that her horse will be easily housebroken!

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

NOTW, The Blog
(1) Ouch! Just received a press release notifying me that "Cynthia Ceilan" has published a book that looks to be direct competition for the mega-successful Darwin Awards (three volumes so far), and she’s entitled it, er, gulp, Thinning the Herd.
(2) Yr Editor knows that greenhouse gas emissions are a way-serious problem, but still, . . ..: Here’s a British engineer’s compilation of the seemingly-zillion things that "global warming" is supposedly causing (more than, er, 600 reports linked. (And while I’m at it, here’s his list of what causes cancer.) [Links via AmericanThinker.com].

Newsrangers: Orlando Segura, Mindy Cohen
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
In Yr Editor’s professional opinion [this is "Pro Edition"], not enough to choose from today.

Civilization in Decline
Mostly, in modern society, when God speaks, it’s in pithy philosophical homilies, but last week He turned into a regular chatterbox with Oral Roberts University president Richard Roberts [NOTW Daily, 10-16-2007, 10-6-2007], telling the embattled Roberts that he shouldn’t stay on and fight to clear his righteous name but should turn tail and run away, and even though his critics had sued him, God told Roberts not to countersue. Said the Lord (according to Roberts, who quoted Him to an AP reporter): "We live in a litigious society. Anyone can get mad and file a lawsuit against another person whether they have a legitimate case or not. This lawsuit [against you, brother Richard] . . . is about intimidation, blackmail, and extortion." God also promised to do something "supernatural" for the university if Roberts stepped down (y'know, as if God needed to sweeten a pot to get people to do what He wants).

The Human Condition Today
Near Seattle, a 14-yr-old kid died of leukemia after he rejected life-prolonging blood transfusions because of course he is—was—a serious Jehovah’s Witness (even though his parents and most of the people who loved him aren’t) . . . . . Poor reporting by the Arizona Republic: A naked woman, 25, not drunk, was found in bed in a strange apartment, and Phoenix’s main newspaper is clueless on details . . . . . Recurring Theme: the meticulous, prolific collector of child porn (50,000 35mm slides, 100 8mm films) (but he’s dead) . . . . . Donald Reidnauer (Sr.), 56, called police after getting hit by a BB, but he was none too happy to see them: "Get in here and do your [omitted] jobs, you dumb [omitted]." "I pay taxes. I am your boss. Get in here and do your jobs or I’ll have to kick your [omitted]" . . . . . New from Japan: a robot dental patient for dentists to practice on but which also says "It hurts" . . . . . No Longer Weird But Still— . . This time it was a female perp who left her ID at the scene (i.e., her purse) . . . . . For a major Chilean charity’s fundraising campaign, a local prostitute auctioned off 27 hrs of "services" (Bonus: with hubba-hubba photo!) (Double Bonus: The fundraising chief, El Sábado Gigante’s Don Francisco, said it was OK!)

Your Daily Loser
Motorist Jennifer Carter, 34, was charged in rural Virginia with feloniously consigning her three urchins to the (locked) trunk, probably because her car was full of stuff, said a deputy. [Ed.: Now, this is a fine practical application of those IQ-test questions about whether the, y’know, triangle fits into the hexagon, stuff like that: Jennifer may not have realized that some of the stuff could have gone in the trunk, and then the kids could have fit into the space vacated by the stuff.]

Professor Music’s Weird Links
For those of you seriously interested in Hell as a destination, try this Daily Telegraph (London) slideshow of sorta-blasphemous Xmas gifts, including a Virgin Mary USB jump drive, a "Bible" you can hide your booze in, a template of the Virgin Mary that you can place over a slice of bread in the toaster oven to make eBay-ready slices, and of course the ever-popular Madonna-and-child thong [click Kitsch Christmas gifts].

Newsrangers: Carol Cavanaugh, Matt Mirapaul, Ken Berkun
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Every year, like clockwork: We’re embarking in typical state deer-hunting season now, and Howie Carr of the Boston Herald has his rundown of attacks by the haunting spirits of deer ancestors, mostly tree-stand accidents (falls and accidental hangings from the stands, rifle-droppings that cause the weapon to fire back atcha, and ordinary mistaken-ID gunshots). Woooooooo!


Civilization in Decline
It’s good to be a British prisoner (which is the title of a continuing series in NOTW), but it’s also good to be a British newt: A developer found EU-protected "great crested newts" on the site and so spent the equivalent of nearly $300k on a special habitat for 'em, but now it appears there were only two . . . . . A Texas company’s plan to upgrade the nutrition of poor Mexican urchins in Chiapas state: free coffee! (Fortified, but still . . ..)


The Human Condition Today
Alexander Smith, 31, was arrested in Aiken, S.C., after trying to open a bank account with a $1 million bill . . . . . It’s possible, according to this Delaware lawsuit, to get the plumbing pipes mixed up during surgery and have the ca-ca be number 1 and the pee-pee be number 2.


Your Daily Loser
F-Stater Brady Wright, 22, was arrested for trying to steal an ATM. Crooks have tried that before, e.g., yanking it away by truck, but the emphasis there was still on snatching it pretty quickly. Brady’s m.o.: Steal a backhoe from a construction site at daybreak last Friday, drive it (slowly) over to a Regions Bank, make a lot of noise, scoop the ATM up, make some more noise, drive it (slowly) away to wherever you planned to set the ATM down and crack it open.


NOTW Lite
Fine Points of the Law: This judge ordered a couple’s marijuana (aka contraband) returned after finding that the search warrant was invalid (Simple explanation: It was "medicinal" marijuana) (More complex explanation: Maybe not).

Updates
Two 5-star NOTW stories wrapped up this week: Thomas Hale ("Papa Pilgrim"), the live-off-the-land Alaskan who ruled his 17 kids with an iron, Biblical hand [and reported somewhere by Yr Editor, but I can’t find it now], got 14 yrs in prison (and was incredulous that his loving family would all testify against him). And the jealous NY man, involved in an Internet affair (he and the woman were, unknown to the other, pretending to be other people) was sentenced to 20 yrs in prison for murdering a man who had also struck up an online relationship with the fictitious woman but who was, himself, not pretending to be anyone else [NOTW 992, 2-11-2007]


Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™


NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor heard (via e-mail) from Aaron Fraser, subject of this 2006 story [NOTW 964, 7-30-2006]:

A federal appeals court in June [2006] affirmed the conviction of Aaron Fraser (aka Asante Kahari) for defrauding a Michigan woman he had met in an Internet chat room and had eventually taken for $38,000 in a counterfeit check scam. (Kahari had sent the woman bogus checks for deposit into her account, and then met her to collect the cash, and was gone by the time the bank realized the checks were counterfeit.) Kahari had denied the charges, but the prosecutor introduced portions of a book, The Birth of a Criminal, by Asante Kahari, which
describes in precise detail the very scheme Kahari was accused of pulling on the Michigan woman. "I would get online," he wrote, "meet a broad and be mailing her the [computer-generated counterfeit] check the next day." [U.S. v. Aaron Fraser (U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Cir., decided 6-1-06)]


Mr. Fraser says he didn’t do none of that and that Yr Editor’s goin’ down [gist, summarized for my busy readers: "[y]ou idiot" and "I will do everything in my power to sue you. [sic] even if its' [sic] just to make you spend thousands of dollars on an attorney"]. Well, we wouldn't want that.


Newsrangers: Ginger Katz, James Wicht, John Gleasner
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Tuesday’s 5-Star Special
In a sublime statutory quirk, Californian Jesse Rodriguez has actually been given a free murder: He was 14 when he pulled the trigger, was not fingered until recently (actually, he outed himself), and he’s 33 now, and state law says juvenile offenders can’t be held past their 25th birthday. Jesse is back in town to testify against the adult who arranged the killing (over car parts).

Civilization in Decline
If the patients had a brain in their head, they’d have avoided Rhode Island Hospital for their surgery (3 wrong-side-of-the-brain surgeries in 9 months) . . . . . Is there any more dismal pastime than sitting around all day watching the Weather Channel? (well, yes, sitting around all day listening to a CD of theme music from the Weather Channel) . . . . . British schoolteacher Gillian Gibbons was arrested in Khartoum because she (teaching little kids in the city’s plushest private school) OK’d the class choice of name for the group teddy bear (Mohammad) . . . . . Before a crowd of 150,000 at a sports stadium, North Korean officials executed a guy whose offense was setting up an outside telephone line (Bonus: Six times that many people were trampled to death in the stadium frenzy).

The Human Condition Today
The caretaker of Leona Helmsley’s wealthy dog Trouble said the mutt has already received "20 to 30" death threats . . . . . Mr. Lugene Shepard, 52, was arrested for DWI, which theoretically ought to be hard for him to do since his license has been suspended or revoked 40 times (Bonus: Shepard’s gal pal said he’s an "excellent" driver and that she feels "100 percent safe" riding with him while he’s been drinking).

NOTW Lite
Fine Points of Religion: A widescreen plasma TV was stolen in a break-in of a Champaign, Ill., store called Simply Amish . . . . . India announced it was sending combat-ready troops to help with peacekeeping forces in Darfur, and by "combat-ready troops," I mean 60 camels trained not to get spooked by gunfire.

Update
San Francisco’s KPIX-TV has a nice little reminder of one of the venerable pioneering weird-news stories: Gloria Sykes’s lawsuit against San Francisco for the 1964 cable car accident that turned her into a nymphomaniac. (She had previously been prim but suddenly started having sex with up to 50 men a week, though at trial, reports of her childhood sexual abuse surfaced.) A reporter tracked her to "an assisted living facility in the Midwest," where she, now age 66, threw him down on the bed and ravish—no, no, just kidding. She didn’t say much at all.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
"Harold" lives on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and apparently has dedicated his life 24/7 to the pleasures of wearable leather (and heavy rubber), for the home ("Leather Oaks") and the person. It’s a rare combination of complete obsession and plenty of time. NSFW: There’s no frontal nudity, but there are a lot of things that would be hard to explain to your boss if you’re in your office now.

Newsrangers: Tim Trewhella, Perry Levin, Robert Eickwort, John Capuano, Bob Pert
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Monday’s 5-Star Special
Hard Times for Mayors: (1) Mayor Lino Donato of Poteet, Tex. (pop. 3500), says he has to work at home from now on since city hall is 1,000 ft from a kids’ recreation center, and he’s a registered sex offender, and (2) Mayor Ken Williams of Centerton, Ark., resigned, confessing that he’s really a former Indiana pastor named Don LaRose who skipped out on his family in 1980 (Bonus: His defense: He had to leave Indiana because Satanic murderers were after him!)

Civilization in Decline
From the French company Guerlain, a lipstick selling for $62k, available in the U.S. only through Bergdorf Goodman . . . . . A British pub (the Pelham Buckle) is handing out electronic swipe cards to control entry for its regular customers, because riff-raff have become a problem . . . . . Between 100m and 1b birds die every yr colliding with glass, especially with those "environmentally friendly" buildings that have reflective glass and thus outsmart the little bird brains . . . . . "Whenever I lie down in my bed, a cobra will just slide on top of me, without hurting me," said a leader in an Indian village that is home to 3,000 of ‘em, and relatively few people get bitten, but for the ones that do, they’re more likely to seek help from (a) a spirit doctor or (b) no one (in that cobras are semi-sacred, anyway) than (c) a medical doctor . . . . . Thai military leaders proposed legislation requiring loudspeakering of the nat’l anthem twice a day and even requiring drivers to come to a stop.

The Human Condition Today
Elizabeth Hingston showed her love, after two months’ courtship, by letting her boyfriend break her leg, for about $200k insurance money (but, of course, they’ve since split up) . . . . . It says here [Ed.: that’s a code phrase for "Yr Editor is not so sure this story isn’t made-up, but maybe it’s real"] that surgeons at Nishtar hospital in Multan, Pakistan, removed a glass Pepsi bottle from a man’s rectum (and here’s Dr. Abdul Manan, eyeballing the x-ray) . . . . . The Top Cat company featured (at a London expo) a "Rabbit Travel Vibe" pulsating dildo that runs off your car’s cigarette lighter, but some auto safety people went nuts [mothers against delightful driving?] . . . . . Ms. Jonna Marks, 39, checked into Quincy (Mass.) Medical Center for some unreported illness but then allegedly proceeded to sell heroin from her room; police confiscated her stash and a scale . . . . . A city council also-ran figured out that Riverdale, Ga., voters tend to favor "female incumbents" over other types and is suing for election fraud, in that the "female incumbent" who beat her used to be a man . . . . . An activist in Uganda charged that the gov’t unfairly profiles women applying to immigrate, to favor those with the very, very important Ugandan assimilation quality of a huge butt . . . . . NY inmate Keith Lettley sent some letters (with his prison number as the return address) to high-profile people threatening something or other (not disclosed) and with white powder inside (tested out harmless), and authorities are puzzled, in that on Lettley’s meet-a-woman web page, he describes himself as "mature," "grounded," "caring," and "fair."

Your Daily Loser
Rudy Aguas, Reno, Nev., attempted a carjacking (said police), but the victim grabbed for Rudy’s gun, sending Rudy fleeing on foot, for a ways, anyhow, until he ran across a construction site, stepped in freshly-poured concrete, and couldn’t get free.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Actually, Mr. Sandy Wong, 45, of Edmonton, Alberta, is probably getting more sex than you, but he’s in trouble because he gets his by himself, in public, sitting on car roofs (new BMW, ‘67 Camaro, ‘65 Bel Air, 2005 MiniCooper, whose hood he teabagged) because they curve like women’s bodies. Other fetishes: motorcycles, women with big feet.

NOTW Lite
Chicago surgeons report that they recently removed a 10-lb., 15x7x7 (inches) hairball from an 18-yr-old woman, who was healthy (except for stomach aches) . . . . . The good news in Croatia is that its soccer team upset England in the Euro 2008 games and that British opera singer Tony Henry is now regarded as the Croats’ nat’l hero; the bad news is that he achieved that distinction by botching the Croatian nat’l anthem at Euro 2008 by accidentally fumbling the lyric, "how we love your mountains!" in favor of "my penis is a mountain!"

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
Good: The German gov’t wastes taxpayers’ money, too, like, for a dirty projection screen, the army bought special brushes supposedly made of hair from cows’ ears.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Here’s Dave Barry’s annual holiday gift guide, which was done up all nice by the Washington Post, including the practical (bedside gun holster) [Ed.: Oops, sorry, forgot that most of you, unlike me ‘n’ Dave, don’t live in the F State] and the quixotic (watermelon-flavored lollipops in the image of the head of Sigmund Freud)].

Newsrangers: Sam Gaines, Geoffrey Egan, Brad Gray, Tom Barker, Tim Farley, Paul Music, Bob Pert, Scott Langill, John Votel, and a cast of many on a couple of those stories
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
"Dede," 35, an Indonesian, is either a reject from an Alien movie or (according to U. of Maryland dermatology professor Anthony Gaspari) is the victim of unrestrained wart growth, resulting in [Ed.: And, of course, warning warning warning, Not Safe for Stomachs] root-like extensions from his hands and feet.

Civilization in Decline
[You never listen, do you, when I try to warn you about your stomach?] Can’t Possibly Be True: It says here that if the Army gives you a signing bonus, say, $30k for another two yrs, and you get your arms shot off by Iraqi insurgents after a yr and are thus not fit for duty, you have to give back $15k; seriously, it says that, though supposedly there’s legislation on the table to fix that . . . . . British doctors warn of a trend, a growing number, an imminent crisis . . ehh, they found three cases of besotted women who drank so much that they ruptured their bladders (but since binge-drinking appears here to stay, well . . .) . . . . . It’s Good to Be a British Prisoner: At the Wakefield maximum security lockup, guards now have to wear soft-soled shoes at night to avoid disturbing the delicate buttercups in their sleep—oh, wait, the shoes also allow the guards to sneak up on ‘em if they have to.

The Human Condition Today
Thousands of middle-class "investors" massed in Shenyang, China, demanding that the gov’t please get their money back for them from the outfit that promised big bucks if they’d raise ants for aphrodisiacs.

NOTW Lite
Headline (The Northwestern, of Oshkosh, Wis.): "Man Shoots Goat After Wife Wouldn’t Bring Him Beer" . . . . . It’s been a while now, but someone else has had the bright idea for a spray-on latex condom, to get around the one-size-fits-all problem, and he’s treating it as a novel idea, but it’s not, as Yr Editor reported in, er, 1996 [NOTW 454, 10-18-1996]: "At a trade fair in Vienna, Austria, in August, body-paint artist Karl Machhamer demonstrated his design for a skin-tight latex condom, custom-painted onto a penis. He plans to market bottles with enough paint for three applications, along with instructions, for about $8. The main drawback is the seven-minute wait while the paint dries." The new guy’s wait time, though, is 25 seconds.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
New York City, on the throes of bankruptcy in the mid-70's, sold a 7-acre island in the East River for $10 to shed its upkeep, but just bought it back (it’s now teeming with wildlife) for, er, $2 million, which is a markup of . . my brain hurts.

Updates
The German cannibal Armin Meiwes [NOTW 834, 2-1-2004; NOTW 777, 12-29-2002; NOTW 867, 9-19-2004] has been elected leader of his prison’s Green Party discussion group and is said to be eating vegetarian . . . . . No Longer With Us: Klutzo the Clown, Springfield, Ill. [NOTW Daily, 10-11-2007], of a Taser shot, during his lockup on sex tourism charges . . . . . It wasn’t Scotland, just England, so when the 24-yr-old guy started to hump an iron fence in front of cops, they arrested him only for drunk ‘n’ disorderly, and didn’t try to put him on the sex-offender register [for background on the sheer danger to the country of humping inanimate objects, see discussion in NOTW Daily, 11-19-2007]. And here’s even more discussion of the sex-with-bicycle story, from BuzzFeed.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
One man’s list of the world’s 15 strangest holidays somehow doesn’t include the Japanese Tagata Jinja fertility festival in which crazed celebrants march while holding aloft huge schlongs, but there is Inazawa, Japan,’s Naked Festival (throngs gather to touch the designated naked person, who will thus them bring good luck) and the Redneck Games of Dublin, Ga. [NOTW M020, 8-26-2007].

NOTW, The Blog
Now, remember, though Yr Editor never stops working for you, there will be no posts until Monday . . . . . NOTW Editorial Advisor Harry Farkas announces the formation of SHMUCC (Save the Hedgefund Managers Undergoing Cash Crisis), for those managers who "face a bleak Xmas holiday" without bonuses (only, ewwww, "salaries"), having to send their kids "to a second-tier Swiss boarding school," consigning their mistresses to Toyota Corollas and having to pick their own Armani off the rack.

Newsrangers: Ken Berkun, Ginger Katz, Tom Barker, Scott Langill
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Tueday’s 5-Star Special
Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez’s bladder caught up with him, at the OPEC summit in Saudi Arabia. He’s said to be renowned for hours-long, live TV speeches in which he sips coffee but is never seen, er, excusing himself, but he finally broke away at a press conference: "Look, I have to go. [F]or a while now, I have needed to go to the bathroom, and I am going to pee . . . Do you want me to pee on you?"

Civilization in Decline
Something you probably didn’t know: Most employer health-insurance plans allow "subrogation" (like if you have an accident and get medical care on the policy, and you then sue somebody for the accident and win "medical expenses," the employer gets first dibs on that payout), but, relax, because apparently employers only insist on subrogation in the cases with the largest lawsuit payouts, i.e., the cases when an employee really needs the extra money, to pay for enduring life care [Wall Street Journal, subscription-only link, but which you can possibly click on for free by going to this Digg link (let me know if it works)] . . . . . The "Florida Classic" is like Super Bowl weekend for black Floridians, with the football game between Florida A&M and Bethune-Cookman only part of the show, and the event (in Orlando) usually brings out the, uh, best in local police, and this yr featured a nervous cop spraying mace, as if it were air freshener, over a "seemingly peaceful downtown crowd."

The Human Condition Today
The former Atlanta superchurch headed by "archbishop" Earl Paulk is further coming apart after revelations that Earl’s 34-yr-old nephew is really Earl’s 34-yr-old son . . . . . Also: One of Australia’s largest DNA testing facilities reported that 10 yrs ago, 1 in 10 daddies weren’t the daddies but that now it’s almost 1 in 4 . . . . . Austin (Tex.) Area Interreligious Ministries scheduled its multifaith gathering this yr at a Baptist church, which agreed to host it until it dawned on them that "interreligious" meant Muslims might be praying there, and thus, no can do, and so a church official asked the community to "understand and be tolerant" of the church’s position . . . . . A former Dallas Cowboys linebacker, who’s now a Redmond, Wash., pastor, threatened to bring Microsoft to its knees over its policy of tolerance of gays; gonna "put a firestorm" on ‘em.

Your Daily Loser
David Holland was arrested in San Jose, Calif., after he submitted a DNA sample to police to help clear his brother of rape and murder, and the DNA sample linked David himself to the unsolved rape of an 81-yr-old woman. Said the prosecutor, "We have to assume he didn’t expect this to happen."

NOTW Lite
Carpet Classic Floor Studio (Highland Township, Mich.) got accidentally rammed simultaneously by two drunk drivers . . . . . An indigenous language still spoken by only two people in Mexico is in danger because the two men don’t speak to each other anymore.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
A Maine farm got a visit from the FDA because its egg nog was illegal: In order to protect people with egg allergies who might buy egg nog not knowing that it has egg in it, the farm will have to recall, and re-label, its egg nog to specifically list "egg" as an ingredient . . . . . Andrew Johnson (white, innocent) was arrested in Orlando instead of Anthony Johnson (black, wanted for drug possession), but, No Problem, Andrew, because the state attorney’s office in Fort Lauderdale has a special "it’s not me" unit, which usually gets to the bottom of things, er, within "three weeks."

Professor Music’s Weird Links
A collection of singers and singing groups badly in need of promotion and design advice. [PDF]

NOTW, The Blog
Erroror: As more news emerges about the New York physician who Yr Editor reported last week [NOTW Daily, 11-15-2007] as having used the same needle and syringe for yrs: Well, he used many needles and syringes, but apparently all, or many, were used over and over on multiple patients.

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

Monday, November 19, 2007

Civilization in Decline
5,000 Christians have joined Hollywood Prayer Network, just to pray for troubled celebrities (one will be assigned to you, or you can pick, with Ms. Spears now getting the most heavenly incoming) . . . . . According to the lawyer for a 6-yr-old Minnesota girl who had her intestines sucked out through her rectum by a faulty wading pool drain, the drain company is somehow still in business despite three previous intestine-vacuuming incidents . . . . . The Washington Post (and partner CBS) said "hundreds" of defendants sit in prison today, convicted in part by "scientific" gun/bullet tests the FBI abandoned in 1995, and of course the poster child the newspaper used was a convicted double murderer named Lee Wayne Hunt . . . . . Americans get their nuclear-bomb launch-security knowledge from movies like Dr. Strangelove, with plotlines involving the Presidential aide who carries the "football" (ultra-secret launch codes), but it turns out that Great Britain didn’t upgrade to launch codes until, er, 1998 (and before then? triggers secured by bicycle locks) (Seriously) . . . . . Saudi judges initially (typically) punished the gang-rape victim with 90 lashes (because she was voluntarily in the company of a male non-relative, who was abducted with her by the seven rapists) with the rapists getting 1 to 5 yrs, but then her lawyers objected, and thankfully the judges came to their senses (er, the rapists were upped to 2 to 9 yrs), but they also retaliated against the victim for complaining, and now she gets 6 months in jail and 200 lashes.

The Human Condition Today
Typical house of squalor (cat, dog, pig feces; kids with insect bites) but with one h-u-u-u-u-uge exception: Mom is a babe! (Bonus: but part of her name is "jail") . . . . . The downside of being the world’s most Internet-savvy country: South Korea opened its first rehab "boot camp" for kids who are pathological webheads (with excellent outward-bound-type photo of the little urchins) . . . . . 29 adults and 4 kids are holed up in a big cave in Russia, awaiting the end o’ the world next May; they are disciples of a guy named Pyotr Kuznetsov, who is said to have mesmerized them with his eyes . . . . . Recurring Theme (with a plus): Dad, drunk, tells his 13-yr-old son to drive them home, but, in this case, the kid’s drunk, too . . . . . Jerome Felske got his job back with the city of Chicago, even after he was caught omitting 16 criminal convictions in his employment application, because, he said, he just forgot about ‘em (and the appeals board was sympathetic, since Felske did disclose the other 6 of his 22) . . . . . CBS News found 80-yr-old identical twins in Madison, Wis., who have done everything alike for, well, 80 yrs, including dress exactly the same every day of their lives (except that one day when they had different shoes) . . . . . Textbook publishers (led by industry giant Houghton Mifflin) submitted sample books for acceptance for public schools in Texas, and reviewers found a total of 109,263 errors, but no problem, y’all just fix ‘em . . . . . A libertarian activist group with a wild hair about the Federal Reserve got raided, and federal agents confiscated two tons of copper coins featuring a likeness (unauthorized) of presidential candidate Ron Paul . . . . . One week, a NYC restaurant gets major props for introducing a $25,000 chocolate sundae (with gold flakes and utensil); next week, shut down by health inspectors (live mouse, droppings, fruit flies, 100 cockroaches).

NOTW Lite
[article in Science] "Scientists Build Robotic Bugs that Infiltrate, Influence Cockroach Society" . . . . . If you ever, ever, in a million years, have occasion to believe that you’re smart, think of Alexis Lemaire, who just figured out which 16-digit number, multiplied by itself 13 times, would equal the 200-digit random number assigned to him, and did I mention, he did this in his head, in 77 seconds . . . . . Tennessee authorities seized 2,400 unlicensed bottles of Jack Daniel’s last month (some bottled almost 100 yrs ago), and state law says some, or all, will have to be poured out!

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
Army Corps of Engineers reassured Lakeview residents of N’awlins that its long-heralded, just-completed gate and levee repairs would reduce the Katrina water level by 5½ feet if another one hit—oops, no, make that, er, reduce it 6 inches (because, it turns out, in one calculation, someone put a "-" when there should have been a "+"), i.e., two yrs, millions of dollars, same old same old.

Updates
The F State’s own restroom toe-tapper, Rep. Bob Allen [NOTW Daily, 7-13-2007, 8-4-2007, 8-24-2007], resigned after his conviction, but he’s still in big-time denial, and a couple of counties below him, in Stuart, Fla., officials want to introduce talking surveillance cameras for its beaches to yell at the toe-tappers when they take their action out of the restrooms, down to the sand . . . . . Scotland’s bicycle-sex case [NOTW Daily, 11-6-2007, 10-31-2007] has drawn the same world criticism as Yr Editor leveled at it, namely, what business is it of the gov’t if a guy is humping his bicycle behind locked doors in his own (temporary) room? And then, on Saturday, came news out of Canada: A guy was arrested after he was found drunk, pants down, sprawled out, next to an obviously-abused stuffed toy dog (even though he was charged only with breaking into the house he stole it from) (but, on the other hand, a Winnipeg shrink told the Winnipeg Sun reporter that there are such things as furries, even though there’s no reason to believe this perp was anything other than drunk ‘n’ horny).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

NOTW, The Blog
(1) Erroror: Oops, in this week’s News of the Weird [NOTW M032, 11-18-2007], the mythical chupacabra should be a goat-sucker, not a blood-sucking goat. (Fortunately, there are many chupacabra fans out there, as well as Spanish-speakers, i.e., chupa [suck], cabra [goat].) (2) Here’s how Britain’s News of the World gets some of its news: First, a legit story hits, in this case a journal article on "persistent genital arousal disorder" which causes women to have multiple orgasms that are next to useless, pleasure-wise, and then News of the World miraculously finds and interviews a "survivor" of the malady who happens to be a hottie who explains what a hard life she is forced to endure with her tragic illness. (3) Today’s NOTW Daily post is, obviously, long, in that I missed the last one on Friday. In addition, I scheduled myself to return to full-time posting seriousness today, and, by golly, I did that! And tomorrow, too. And Wednesday, too. But then I’m taking off for the Thanksgiving holidays until Monday, November 26th. But I’m all serious again, yessiree!

Newsrangers: Joseph Meehan, Mark Neunder, Pete Randall, Bob Pert, Joe Littrell, Steve Miller, Ted Cushman, Karl Olson, Phil Daley, Jenny Beatty, Emory Kimbrough, Ginger Katz
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

[NOTE: Well, here we are 23 hours later, and Bright House Networks' high-speed Internet connection is still down in the Tampa Bay area. Y'know, if News of the Weird Daily were a money-generating venture (instead of a pathetic expression of OCD), Yr Editor'd have a DSL backup connection. But all I have now is dial-up. As should be obvious, NOTW Daily cannot possibly be done by one person using dial-up. Furthermore, when broadband comes back up, I'll be at least 24 hours behind hunting out the news, and reading e-mails (because ordinary newspapers, that you hold in your hands, are next to useless). So, not only was there no post on Friday, Nov. 16, or Saturday, Nov. 17, but there likely will not be a full, regular post on Monday, Nov. 19, either (although I will put something up). Please keep those news tips coming, though, as it is somewhat easier to read them, even when I have to click on links, than it is to load full newspaper sites to see what they've published.]

Friday, November 16, 2007

NOTE: Yr editor, who normally posts not later than 12 noon Eastern time, will be up to 4 hours late today. Wait. . . .my cable modem has been off all morning and I'll never recover in time so I'm gone til
tomorrow

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Thursday’s 5-Star Special
Can’t Possibly Be True: (1) Lucky you’ve only got Chinese toys with lead because one of their domestic-consumption products is super-cheap hairbands made from recycled used condoms, but even worse than that, (2) a New York physician was found to have used the very same needle-syringe, er, all the time, from 2000 to 2005, with at least two cases of hep-C so far (much testing still being done), and almost worse than that, (3) the state licensing authority told the doc, Bad doctor, Cut that out because if you re-use needles again, you’re gonna be in trouble, and we’re going to check on you "periodically" so don’t try anything with us!

Civilization in Decline
In Vancouver, at least, an epidemic of smugness among mothers not just demanding cloth diapers for their urchins, but designer cloth diapers, at prices of $80 to $300 per (and that’s Canadian dollars, not cheap U.S. dollars) . . . . . A U.S. Santa Claus-recruiting firm operating in Australia allegedly put out word that "ha ha ha" should be used instead of "ho ho ho," lest little girls think Santa is dissing them . . . . . A British woman was convicted of filing her 8th false rape-accusation in five yrs (let go with warnings before) and was finally sent to ja—oops, no, the judge let her go again . . . . . Apparently, no one in Brisbane wants to work behind the counter at the Qantas terminal, as it is chronically understaffed, and when two clerks left their positions to attend to a dying woman in line, many of the 1,000 queued up started booing.

The Human Condition Today
South Korea’s version of feng shui (with emphasis on the good fortune flowing from the proper arrangement of burial plots) is popular also among politicians, which is causing a frantic relocation of their relatives’ bodies this election season . . . . . A brave Chinese doctoral student filed a lawsuit against the country’s film censors for removing the sex scenes from Ang Lee’s latest . . . . . Toad-licking is back, at least in Kansas City, said a local "animal expert" . . . . . Impatience: (1) A kid was shot dead in San Francisco for standing still, instead of walking on, a down escalator, but (2) a Chicago letter carrier survived a gunshot in the leg that was probably occasioned by his late (6 p.m.) delivery route due to the Veterans’ Day backlog . . . . . An F State shoplifter was arrested for two containers of hair spray (whose sprayers had been removed, the contents drunk, and the containers returned to the shelf) (And he had $15 on him, enough for some real booze, but he said he was shopping at that Wal-Mart, and when he spotted the hair spray, "The temptation was too great") . . . . . An elementary school librarian in Saskatchewan banned an award-winning children’s book because one character had been described as having "generous bazoongas" [which is Canadian for "gazongas"] . . . . . Today’s Fatuosity, courtesy of a University of New Mexico student complaining that federal budget cutbacks would make birth control stuff more expensive at the student health center: "[Students shouldn’t] have to make a choice between their birth control and their cell phone bill or their birth control and their gym membership."

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Update: Mr. Akinwale Arobieke, who was convicted last year and ordered to stop going around on the street feeling up men’s muscles [Seriously] [NOTW 983, 12-10-2006], just couldn’t stay on the wagon.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
GAO issued another report dogging Transportation Security Agency equipment, this time, and not agents, after inspectors had more trouble getting shampoo through than IED ingredients . . . . . A 37-yr-old Lebanese woman pleaded guilty in Detroit to charges in connection with (said the U.S. Attorney) defrauding ever-alert U.S. Immigration and then later defrauding the ever-alert FBI and the ever-alert CIA, where, as an agent, she accessed classified information about her brother-in-law, a Hezbollah guy (There’s no evidence that nat’l security was compromised, but again, the investigators who concluded that were from the ever-alert FBI and the ever-alert CIA).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

Newsrangers: Peter Timmins, Steve Miller, Bob Pert, Steve Dunn, Brian Love, Ginger Katz, Sam Varshavchik
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
Can’t Possibly Be True: Spurred by news of British schoolkids’ obesity, special gyms open up for children, down to, well, 10-month-olds, no, down to 4-month-olds.

Civilization in Decline
British Airways, which currently has a major "green" advertising campaign, nonetheless flies empty on occasional cross-Atlantic flights (spewing "thousands of tons of CO2" each) [see also NOTW Daily, 3-13-2007, British Mediterranean Airways, but that was domestic flights only], probably so as not to lose landing slots at Heathrow and Gatwick, though BA denies that . . . . . You heard it here first: It’s all that heavy, repeated drinking by pregnant mothers that damages fetuses; binge-drinking from time to time, not so much . . . . . A municipal task force in Fort Collins, Colo., has recommended de-colorizing Christmas lights starting next yr (to white only) because, er, red and green are too religiousy . . . . . Whew! It’s not just America! Britain’s Home Secretary told Parliament there were probably 10,000 illegal immigrants working in gov’t-related security jobs.

The Human Condition Today
Recurring: Another of Taipei’s famed (now, 12-store chain) toilet-themed restaurants caught the attention of a Reuters stringer: no chairs (toilet seats only), no napkins (tp only), etc. [see also NOTW 907, 6-26-2005] . . . . . No, officer, I wasn’t soliciting that [undercover-cop] prostitute; I offered to pay her for sex because I’m doing research (and I am, seriously, a nationally known professor specializing in infectious diseases at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, with more than 145 professional papers on my résumé) . . . . . An F State man ran from police who wanted to question him about car break-ins in the area, but the area happened to be the Miccosukee Indian reservation, which is on the edge of the Everglades, and "Poncho," the gator, got him.

Your Daily Loser
A 16-yr-old kid broke in to a bank in Wyandotte, Mich., just to mess things up a bit with a hammer (and his bowels). He told cops he was bored and had taken four Xanaxes.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Sebastian Mancilla was arrested at a department store in Mesa, Ariz. From the Arizona Republic report on the security camera footage: "At one time Mancilla approached the woman from behind and laid down on the floor to look up her skirt. He then got back to his feet and continued to act as if he was shopping. He later knelt next to the woman, but got back to his feet when the woman began to walk away, according to Mesa police."

NOTW Lite
Arrested for allegedly embezzling $18k from her F State boss: Ms. Mary Crook . . . . . Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reports on the slowly-catching-on "fecal transplant" procedure (The superbug Clostridium difficile kills the "good" bacteria in your bowel, leaving the "bad" guys to give you hard-to-treat diarrhea-from-hell, so you get a healthy relative to donate a couple of stools [Miss Manners is silent on the best way to broach that subject], and a cocktail is administered via enema, presumably replenishing the "good" bacteria, which then clear out the C. difficile) . . . . . Wrong on several levels: A Columbus, Ohio, firefighter was charged with indecent exposure for unzipping in a park: (1) the female cop who "entrapped" him was topless [which is legal in Columbus] and had been lying out there every day; (2) he was in uniform, and they had chatted each other up, and she even had her foot on his shoulder; (3) the whole thing was captured on surveillance camera, but from afar, because the police dept. apparently can’t cough up money for a zoom lens, (4) nor audio, so it’s impossible to tell what she said right before he unzipped.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
As today’s post is already much too-toilet-related, Yr Editor might as well go for it, so try Cracked magazine’s "25 Most Baffling Toys from Around the World," with lots of inexplicable non-toilet stuff, but then, there’s the toy commode from Japan with projectile excrement.

NOTW, The Blog
(1) Erroror: Valentine, Neb., the home base of yesterday’s "Vaseline man," is hardly "near" Lincoln, as I wrote. (2) It’s two days too stale for NOTW Daily, but I was so thrilled to learn of a Tasering practice that’s even too rough for the F State: Three cops surround an unconscious man; he’s not a threat; he just won’t do as they say and get out of the car . . . Taser! (He was having a diabetic event. Sweet home, Alabama!)

Newsrangers: Sam Gaines, Harry Farkas, Ginger Katz, Bob Pert, Diane Gunnels-Rowley, Craig Helmer, Jack Brookman, Jerry Whittle, Gregory Lawhorn, Lance Rector
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Human Condition Today
Homeless Dexter Ford was caught entwined in the sex act near a ramp to Interstate 71 in Cincinnati, but since the evidence indicates that the woman was asleep the whole time, "consent" seems to be missing—but wait, says Ford’s attorney; the woman’s a diagnosed sleepwalker and could have given consent "while asleep"! . . . . . A 79-yr-old nun in Milwaukee pleaded no contest to an active Catholic school sex life in the 1960s with two of her students (who, now in their 50s, appear still totally devastated by the "abuse" they endured) . . . . . An F State man, kicked out by his girlfriend, tried to squeeze part-way through the cat door to let himself back in but was found stuck, and dead . . . . . Valentine, Neb. (near Lincoln), had been terrorized from May until October by someone lubing up with Vaseline and leaving what were somehow identified as butt prints on doors and windows, but he’s been inactive for several weeks now (Bonus: Cops say there could also be a copycat) . . . . . A panel of marginally solid citizens called yesterday for the U.S. gov’t to open its UFO files (and we can’t automatically count on our next president, Dennis Kucinich, to open them, even though he said he’s seen one, because Jimmy Carter didn’t do that after his own UFO sighting) (But what about that mysterious blue cloud in Parma, Ohio, on Sunday?) [Ed.: But wait, no local Ohio media reported that story, according to Yahoo and Google] . . . . . Recurring Theme: Yet another Hindu man in India got in some kind of trouble and was advised to make it go away by marrying a dog, which he did.

Update
District of Calamity (cont’d): It turns out that, according to the FBI affidavit for the arrest warrants on the bogus tax-refund scam [NOTW Daily, 11-8-2007], the schemers were also incredibly stupid, i.e., after the initial alert (by an employee of a Sun Bank branch operating out of a supermarket!), investigators immediately saw the bogosity. That means the internal management of the District of Calamity gov’t was even more ridiculously lax than you would assume. The bogus property tax refund checks were in the hundreds of thousands of dollars . . to small "companies" that should have aroused suspicion on first glance. (Bonus: The District's previously-well-regarded Chief Financial Officer: "The most sophisticated audits won't be able to find this kind of corruption.")

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

NOTW, The Blog
Civilization in Even Faster Decline: NOTW Senior Editor, Prof. Paul Music, has been selected as a "Nielsen family," even though his media consumption is in about the third Standard Deviation from the U.S. norm (and his other characteristics are in about the fourth or fifth).

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

Monday, November 12, 2007

Civilization in Decline
The UK gov’t introduced a popular bill to de-stigmatize designer babies, even if created expressly for their "spare parts" (as long as the purpose is not elective gender-selection) . . . . . A price war in London means beer sells for less than bottled water . . . . . British-born Samina Malik, 23, a shop assistant at Heathrow, was convicted for writing Islamic terrorist poetry (She apparently has a thing for beheadings: "Tilt the fool’s head to its left / Saw the knife back and forth / No doubt that the punk will twitch and scream / But ignore the donkey’s ass / And continue to slice back and forth") . . . . . It costs $275 (nonrefundable) to appeal a $100 traffic ticket in Massachusetts . . . . . So far this yr, the federal gov’t has run background checks on 25m people, most not for anti-terrorism.

The Human Condition Today
A few of psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich’s fans remind us this week of his passing 50 yrs ago, even though his main contribution has never left the fringe of science: He thought that releasing orgasmic energy was the key life force . . . . . The mayor of Chepstow, Wales, is all for Remembrance Day (Britain’s Veterans’ Day) but wants the full-dress military marchers to leave their "awful" guns at home . . . . . Paul Durant, on trial for murder in Spain, said his mission in life was to kill (and eat) pedophiles . . . . . Just in time for the story in this week’s NOTW (M031, 11-11-2007) of motorists stuck on railroad tracks, unable to move or leave the car, at the precise moment a train is coming: Yet another! (Mineola, N.Y.) . . . . . An F State man, 77 and apparently headed south quickly, bicycled to school to pick up his grandson, and had pedaled all the way back home before his wife informed him that he had the wrong kid . . . . . The South Dakota Supreme Court freed Michael James Plenty Horse from his indecent exposure conviction on the ground that Mr. Plenty Horse barely had his pants down at all when he was caught lying on top of a female mannequin, undulating his hips (i.e., nothing was "exposed") . . . . . What looks so far like a case of Third World’ers caught up in one of those supernatural hysteria epidemics, in this case, "twitching," by a dozen schoolkids, but it was near Roanoke, Va. . . . . . Too Good 2 B True: Fortune magazine reports that a software team is part-way done on a filter that blocks online comments that are stupid (but is hung up on what sounds stupid but is actually ironic or sarcastic, which may actually be brilliant) (but maybe not) . . . . . In Thailand, a free-lance security guard watchdog: He roams the streets, and if he finds a guard asleep, he beats the crap out of him (eight dead so far) . . . . . From Sweden, a Muhammad-blaspheming cartoon is being turned into . . a musical! . . . . . And TheSmokingGun.com’s latest mugshot gallery is of 14 people who have made chillingly horrible fashion decisions about their hair.

Your Daily Loser
Near Seattle, a 66-yr-old man was working on his Lincoln Continental, trying to take a wheel off, but was confounded by one stubborn lug nut. Solution: 12-gauge shotgun blast. Unintended consequence: various ricochets of buckshot. Result: hospital, with serious injuries to both legs, on up to his chin.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
An estimated 15,000 obscene phone calls (to women, on the subject of underwear) have now sent Paul Kavanagh to jail for 2½ yrs..

NOTW Lite
Final tally for a city council seat in Winchester, Ind.: Bill Monroe, the incumbent, 111; Tom Sells, 112. Among those who neglected to vote: Mrs. Bill Monroe.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work (Special District of Calamity Edition)
The District of Calamity needs to move its government operations to some other city that’s not serviced by the Washington Post, because last week, once again, Post investigations blistered ‘em for some inexcusable embarrassments that cost millions of dollars and made some struggling people’s lives significantly worse, and as usual, it wasn’t so much the initial miscreants (every organization has ‘em) but the almost-patented D.C. bureaucratic ethical fog that keeps the miscreants out of plain sight. For so many offices, there’s a sense of employee entitlement to raid the buffet (and if anyone finds out, it’ll make everybody look bad, so Shhhhh!). The gov’t was already reeling last week from that $20m (since revised upward) tax-refund scam operated with impunity for three yrs before the feds busted in [NOTW Daily, 11-8-2007], but then on Friday, the Post turned over another rock to find yet another underground pit teeming with worms of corruption: student activity funds at District of Columbia schools. Basically, concluded the Post investigators, if you find even one of the 147 schools’ funds being managed properly, it’s a mistake, and you’ve missed something. They’ve all been misused, for years (and some actually "looted"), by D.C. school employees, at least some of whom in all honesty thought that the funds were there for employee recreation instead of for sponsoring student organizations and field trips and student computer maintenance, etc. Here’s the secret: Keep no records! That way, any auditors (or federal prosecutors) that come upon these train wrecks will have to punt because there’d be no smoking guns that they could show the school board or a jury. (But, wait, D.C. law requires that funds get reported periodically so someone up the chain of command will notice, sooner or later, that reports aren’t coming, right? Answer: This is the District of Columbia gov’t; they never notice. And if someone does notice, it’s not long before he faces the heartbreaking realization that no one else cares about exposing the wrongdoing. Nearly 25 percent of all people listed as "business managers" of their schools had, themselves, bankruptcies, foreclosures, lawsuits, etc., on their records. The funds are mostly in the tens of thousands of dollars, but some are huge: Wilson High School’s is $700k. A couple of the blatant abusers were tracked down by the Post, which was easy to do because they’re still on the job, on "probation," and richly defended by their current boss. D.C. schools: worst performing, most expensive, highest administrative-to-instruction ratio.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

Newsrangers: Emory Kimbrough, Ginger Katz, Scott Langill, Casey Burns, Karl Olson, Edward Ingram, Gary Goldberg, John Witherspoon, Perry Levin, Joe Littrell, Bob Pert
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Civilization in Decline
Woo! "Fires During Surgeries a Bigger Risk Than Thought" reported the Boston Globe, especially in Pennsylvania (28 per yr) and Massachusetts (at least 6 per yr), with the main cause, apparently, those cauterizing thingees, used too soon after alcohol-swabbing . . . . . The mayor-elect of Lorain, Ohio (pop. 68,000) announced that the new temporary director overseeing the police department would be, er, a 21-yr-old Heidelberg College student now interning at city hall . . . . . Japanese researchers said they genetically removed the neurological connector between a mouse’s nose and brain that causes it to get scared when it smells a cat [Ed.: Undisclosed, though, is how tedious this research must be, in that the subjects obviously get quickly eaten] . . . . . No more camel beauty contests in Saudi Arabia, as they've been fatwa-ed out, sorta because they inspire pride of ownership, when camels are really just tools from God.

The Human Condition Today
Yr Editor has had it wrong, thinking that a Pentecostal’s getting bitten handling snakes was a sign from God, and sayonara, but, no, it turns out from this lawsuit that the hospital has a duty to override God’s will and save their pious selves . . . . . I also had it wrong that cults recruit members by wearing them down, because apparently a door-to-door magazine-sales cult was able to convince this 21-yr-old woman in Anchorage, Alaska, to join them within minutes, and now she tells mom she’s as happy as she can be, in Bakersfield, Calif. . . . . . At a St. Louis Cardinals’ home game, with their scoreboard that flashes fans’ text messages, someone wrote A.B. has an S.T.D., and one Miss A.B. was harassed in school over it, so she’s suing the prankster, wait, no, she’s not; she’s suing the Cardinals. . . . . . In reporting one of those instantaneous wood-chipper deaths, the L.A. Times found that 31 people died disrespecting wood chippers between 1992 and 2002.

Your Daily Loser
A 45-yr-old convicted molester of his 5-yr-old daughter in Edmonton, Alberta, did his own version of penitence in a letter to her, apologizing for not saying no when she kept initiating things in the bedroom and the shower, demanding answers to questions like about women’s orgasms. "I didn’t want you hating daddy because I wouldn’t tell you what you wanted to know."

NOTW Lite
Oops! Mom hired a dance-a-gram service to serenade her son, 16, during his high school drama class, as good clean fun, but through a "booking error," the service sent a stripper instead of the requested gorilla; the teacher stood by stewing for a couple of minutes, but then, "That’s it, That’s enough."

Updates
Wesley Snipes goes on trial for tax fraud in January (he fell for one of those airheaded income tax schemes and then also failed to file for 6 straight yrs [NOTW Daily, 10-20-2006]), in one of the more cracker-filled counties in the F State, but it’s no "hotbed of Klan activity" as his lawyer claimed in trying to get the trial moved to New York City . . . . . Keeping you up to date on ovulation research: A Canadian team found that the sexiness of a woman’s walk does not indicate her state of fertility, which is fair enough, but the team did this by "dress[ing] female volunteers in suits which had light reflectors placed on the joints and limbs and filmed them walking in order to analyze their gait," wrote Agence France Presse. (This is an "update" because of a previous story on judging sexy walks [NOTW M027, 10-14-2007] and because of this recent research, indicating that lap dancers get wilder at that time of the month.)

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Here’s a report (with photos) on a Russian guy with pretty severe Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder, manifested by his need to jot down his extensive thoughts about something or other, using any flat surface he encounters.

NOTW, The Blog
(1) In September, an F State parent wrote to the local sheriff that students were huffing a concoction of fermented doo-doo and pee-pee to get high, and the sheriff went into panic mode and issued an advisory, and the story made the wires. Turns out that some meth-deprived Third Worlders do actually huff that stuff (NOTW has reported it) and have given it a name ("jenkem"), but Snopes.com doubts that it’s coming to America, except in the mind of that F State parent. (2) Errorores: Apparently the Jerusalem Post got some things wrong with the story Yr Editor used yesterday on the poor translations. A comment on the site says (a) the faulting translation program was "Babylon," not "Babelfish.com"; (b) it was not a delegation of journalists headed for the Netherlands but just one; and (c) some Hebrew was miswritten, like, y’know, it was reported as ishkabbbl when it was really lktoosnibr, so something like that. [Go to the link, above, and read the Talkbacks at the end of the story] (3) Reminder: Saturday posts will be returning soon but just not in the next three Saturdays.

Newsrangers: Ginger Katz, Steve Passen, Karl Olson, Joe Littrell. Paul Di Filippo, Michelle Jensen, Paul Music
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Civilization in Decline
Found in the briefcase this week of the new Sicilian Mafia capo di tutti capo, probably addressed indirectly to the young punk recruits they’re letting in these days, was a list of Commandments on how to be honorable thugs, like, no hitting on friends’ wives and stay out of bars . . . . . Two mid-level Washington, D.C., city tax department workers were charged with stealing $16m with bogus tax refunds over at least a three-yr period [Ed.: There are bad apples everywhere, but only in the fog of the District of Calamity bureaucracy can you do this continuously for three years, and no one notice].

The Human Condition Today
An Israeli journalists’ organization, anticipating a working visit to the Netherlands, e-mailed a list of questions it expected to ask officials, but left their translation entirely in the hands of the robo-translator Babelfish.com, with ensuing hilarity (e.g., "The mother of your visit in Israel is a sleep to the favor or to the bed your mind on the conflict are Israeli Palestinian, and on relational Israel Holland") . . . . . Not only is Alexander Smith, 46, unconcerned about his carbon footprint, he doesn’t even mind driving down the road in North Carolina and dumping his old washing machine, and then his dryer, and then his stove, and then another stove, and then a freezer (and that's "felony littering") . . . . . A UK lottery game was abruptly pulled from the market because of customer, er, unsophistication (i.e., a lot of people had the damnedest time deciding whether minus-6 degrees is warmer or colder than minus-8) [via ScienceBlogs.com] . . . . . Catholic priest Fr. David Ajernian was arrested in New York City for an ongoing celebrity stalking of, er, Conan O’Brien ("I want a public confession [he wrote Conan] before I ever consider giving you absolution" [and absolution for what, he didn’t say]).

Your Daily Loser
Brian Poulin, 35, was arrested after calling 911 in Hebron, Conn., several times and asking seriously if the police could please bring him some beer.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
A UK driving instructor was charged with fondling several female students, but his perfectly good, don’t-we-all-do-this explanation for showing one girl the photograph of his penis: Well, I had a new camera and I wanted to test the close-up lens. (Bonus: Who needs Doc Johnson when you've got a carrot?)

NOTW Lite
And the deer rested in peace (recurring theme): Two cars collided with a deer on a Wisconsin road at about the same time, but then careened off and hit each other, causing one of the cars to burst into flames . . . . . Since It Could Theoretically Happen, It Did: In Cary, N.C., a woman gave birth to twins early Sunday morning, with one dropping at 1:32 a.m. and the other 34 minutes later, at, er, well, 1:06 a.m.

Good Enough for Gov’t Work
It’s not so crucial that the terrorist watch list is overbloated because (the defense goes) you can just write in and have your name taken off . . well, except for those 15,000 people, most of whom wrote in months ago begging Homeland Security’s pardon.

Updates
A downside of term limits: If your representatives can’t return to the state house, what will they do with their free time? Until last yr, Ted Klaudt was a wide-bodied South Dakota legislator, and now here he is, convicted of sexually assaulting two teenage girls by convincing them that his probing fingers were giving them a medical exam to ascertain their fitness to sell their eggs for the big bucks [NOTW Daily, 5-21-2007] . . . . . And Florida’s own toe-tapper, state Rep. Bob Allen of Titusville, went on trial this week, with his defense now focusing on whether money was ever mentioned in that public restroom (For a look at Allen’s evolving explanations, see NOTW Daily, 7-13-2007, 8-4-2007, 8-24-2007) . . . . . The Philadelphia judge who [reasonably, in Yr Editor’s view, although not in the view of many other people] downgraded a possible rape of a prostitute to "armed robbery"/"theft of services" [NOTW Daily, 10-17-2007] was re-elected to the bench this week.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe tomorrow.™

NOTW, The Blog
London’s Daily Mail, always toeing the line of appeal to the salacious, crossed it in Thursday’s online edition: detailed instructions on how a woman is supposed to weigh her breast (for bra-fitting purposes, of course), accompanied by definite NSFW photos.

Newsrangers: Wendy Palm, Zoe Boult, Emory Kimbrough, Judy Kane, Joe Littrell, Scott Langill, Valerie Carr, Steve Miller, Karl Olson
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Wednesday’s 5-Star Special
[Ed.: Sorry, this is personal; you don’t need to revere this story as I do, but please bear with me; I’m helpless when I see these.] Charles Everson Jr. and his wife Linda were riding along near Manson, Wash., on Sunday when a flying 600-lb. cow landed on their minivan. (They were shaken up but not injured.) [Ed.: That’s it. That’s the story. Uh, well, how many of you have insurance against flying cows? If you’re a person of faith, did you pray this morning to be spared from flying cows? What could be more ominous, to test our resiliency as a presage to the Apocalypse, than to send in a wave of flying cows? I rest my case.]

Civilization in Decline
Lead in Chinese toys is for amateurs; a Chinese bead set toy (sold in Australia) contains a chemical that the body metabolizes into, er, the date-rape drug (GHB) . . . . . Oops! A convicted rapist was temporarily freed in 1991 after 2 months of a 20-yr-sentence, but Massachusetts then lost track of him until recently (including not realizing who he was while investigating two domestic abuse complaints several yrs ago), and now he argues that his "right," to serve an uninterrupted sentence, has been violated and that he should go free (Bonus: He won) . . . . . A Mascoutah (Ill.) Middle School girl got two days of detention for innocently hugging one of her friends bye-bye (two hugs, actually, therefore disqualifying her from a first-offender warning).

The Human Condition Today
Family Values: A boy, 13, took the family car for a ride by himself, crashed into a tree, and when police came, immediately gave up his dad as the driver . . . . . Washington state Rep. Jim Dunn remorsefully said he didn’t exactly recall what he said to the sexually-harassed woman but that, whatever it was, he was "sure it was very inappropriate, because I do that kind of thing" (with the probable subject matter being how his bulbous, slob-like self wanted to take her home and nail her) . . . . . Drug dealers, pussified: Two student dealers, holding a customer hostage after his pals skipped out with the stash, roughed up the guy to get him to give up his friends, beating him with a paddle, shaving off some of his hair, dousing him with urine, and burning his neck and shoulders with hot cookies straight from the oven (Seriously) . . . . . Recurring Theme: another one of those Japanese suicides, leaping off of a tall building, and inadvertently landing on someone (who survived) (Bonus: "It is common in Japan for people to remove their shoes [which she did] before committing suicide").

Your Daily Loser
Carl Dashaw, 45, was arrested in Anchorage because, while police were conducting a warranted search of his home for child porn, they learned that he was busy downloading even more child porn.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
According to the prosecutor, perp Albert McCausland, 61, on trial for indecent assault on an underage girl, laid professional seduction techniques on her, including showing her an air freshener that depicted a bare-breasted woman.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
More on the paranormal: Here’s a page (StopAbductions.com) of do-it-yourself on constructing a helmet that’s guaranteed to repel those irritating radio waves that the gov’t and various private citizens keep bombarding you with, especially the ones enticing you out from under the security of your covers. [Warning: Blocking out radio waves will also repel those beamed-in messages from Anna Kournikova, telling you how much she loves you.]

NOTW, The Blog
BBC News reported a granddaddy of a story on the world’s "dumb laws," a genre of which Yr Editor is always distrustful, since these compilations almost never, ever include citations or even evidence of serious research. Some may actually be laws on the books. I suspect, though, that most are of the "as told to" variety. Enjoy it if you will, but my guess is that you would be enjoying at least partly a work of fiction . . . . . The latest in cheap, breathless, nearly-scientifically-worthless news that’s guaranteed to grab readers of this day and time: Some guy has figured out how to make fuel as the by-product of the manufacture of chocolate, so, of course, go gorge yourself because it’s good for the planet.

Newsrangers: Gil Nelson, Philip Urban, Jerry Whittle, Paul Music, Emory Kimbrough, Mark Neunder, Jeannine Townsend, Jan Wolitzky
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2007 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.