Monday, February 18, 2008

Things To Worry About On Monday
The stressed-out carbon footprinter / Cloning Cujo / More blind obedience to SatNav / Can you hear me now? (Woof!) / And a note from Yr Editor on The Blog!

Civilization in Decline
An unofficial U.S. Marine Corps study says “hundreds of deaths and injuries” of Marines in Iraq could have been prevented if a 2005 requisition for armored trucks hadn’t gotten waylaid in a bureaucratic maze in Washington . . . . . The Saudi legal system is bad, maybe even worse than Texas’s: An illiterate woman allegedly confessed (she thumb-printed a document she couldn’t read) to doing witch-like stuff, and was sentenced to die, over the objection of a supposedly higher court, with one victim’s complaint being that her witchiness sapped the strength from his Mister Happy . . . . . A new psychiatric specialty in the “anxiety” career field: for patients worried sick over how they’re ruining the environment.

The Human Condition Today
$150k is what one U.S. customer is paying the South Korean lab touting a “25 percent” likelihood of success cloning a dead pet dog (Bonus: a pit bull!) . . . . . British gambler to legal bookie: I told you not to take any more bets from me (including that time I made the biggest bet in the history of golf) so it’s your fault I’m out £2 million, and I want it back . . . . . Warren Robinson arrived in court in Jacksonville, Fla., on a domestic abuse case and, in blissful optimism, handed the judge an envelope with a $100 bill inside suggesting that he take his wife out on Valentine’s Day . . . . . A British rail company said that, unexpectedly, three of its covered bridges were damaged a total of 62 times last yr by trucks, with drivers explaining that they were using navigation software and not paying much attention to road signs such as “Low Bridge Ahead” . . . . . Religious Oppressors at Work: (1) These Amish say they ought to be able to do what they want with their outhouse contents (and they’ll go to jail rather than chemically treat it); (2) Sikh motorcyclists can’t obey helmet laws because of those turbans . . . . . A ghostbuster was called to a water treatment plant in East Sussex, England, because of a “humanoid figure” patrolling the sewers . . . . . A female prison shrink fell in love with her schizophrenic patient and said she hopes some day to raise a family with him if he’s ever declared sane enough to get out . . . . . Sister Lucia is up for fast-track sainthood, with her main claim apparently that she attended a 1917 personal appearance by the Virgin Mary in Fatima, Portugal . . . . . Least Competent Pupils: At Denny High School in Falkirk, Scotland, a girl bent down in a busy hallway to pick up a pencil, and 25 kids were injured crashing into her (several needing hospital treatment) . . . . . How embarrassing! Brockton, Mass., judge Charles Grabau announced the verdict of guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, right before the defense lawyer reminded him that there was still that pesky “closing argument” that he wanted to deliver . . . . . Instant Karma: Mr. Mundo Lara, 25, is no longer with us; he first drove toward his girlfriend during a spat, to run her down, but then got out of the car and sprinted through traffic on I-45 near Houston but didn’t quite make it . . . . . Instant Karma II: Quenton Green, 16, in a friend’s car and on his way to take his big driver’s test, skidded off the road, smashed into a house, and flipped the car over.

Your Daily Loser
Nearing the very end of his 12-yr sentence (he was on early-release parole), Augustine Salazar was arrested for several crimes including having 10g of cocaine, and now he’s headed back for 50 more big ones.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
The drunk driver in her black cocktail dress, fish-net stockings, and high heels, alas, was going home alone from a night out in Manchester, N.H., and besides, she had trouble finding the driver’s license in her purse. Bonus: It was actually federal bankruptcy judge Robert Somma, cattin’ around while his wife was out of town. He has resigned.

The first-ever photo (wildlife experts say) of gorillas doin’ it in the missionary position [No, there’s no photo link! Jeez. You people!] [Oh, all right, if you insist!] . . . . . The latest software in tech-crazy South Korea: It’ll measure your voice patterns to tell you whether you’re faking sincerity well enough to fool anybody . . . . . In New Zealand, they say a song that nobody can hear . . is now a best-seller (It’s music for dogs, and dogs’ ears supposedly perk up when it’s played, but they’ll have to take dogs’ word for it that there’s anything on the recording.) . . . . . The Daily Mail profiled Simon Allison, Marks & Spencer’s chief food tester . . of pet food, and he loves his job, and no, he doesn’t swallow . . . . . Generation Gap: Richard Edmond, 15, editor of the newspaper at Cleveland High School, Reseda, Calif., shrugged with bemusement. after the principal had a sh*tfit at the Feb. 14th, front-page illustration of a hoo-hah (“Have a happy Vagina Day!” the headline screamed).

Thanks to the U.S. Court of Appeals, dildos can once again be sold legally in Texas . . . . . The NY Times updated us on Yucca Mountain, where “2020" is the earliest year that the “final solution” to the nuclear-reactor waste issue can begin, but by then the costs will be as much as $35B just on the delays since the late 1980s (mostly caused by the insistence of otherwise-sensible people that Yucca Mountain should be made safe for “a million years,” which, for Creationists, is about 160 times longer than the world has existed).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
You will never look at a feather duster the same way again. Not Safe For Work™ and Not Safe For Mature Audiences (but if you were all that mature, you wouldn’t be reading NOTW Daily, anyway).

NOTW, The Blog
Yr Editor, like most writers, has energy spells of variable lengths and intensity, but their cycling in and out recently has taken on bipolar-disorder dimensions. Doing NOTW Daily requires me, for my own (ahem!) standards of quality, to bring energy to every sentence, or at least every second, or every third sentence, something like that, and when I lack that, even I am not very interested in reading what I write. I can usually gin up the endorphins for a weekly ride at the News of the Weird column, but the daily showdown has become a problem. So, let’s just go back to the three-day-a-week thing and see what happens.

Newsrangers: Sam Schwarz, Steve Miller, Emory Kimbrough, Joe Littrell, Bob Pert, Paul Di Filippo, Mindy Cohen, Scott Schrier, Stephen Taylor, Paul Music, Jerry Whittle, John Smith
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.