Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Things To Worry About On Wednesday
World’s plastic-surgery record threatened / How much do you really know about Ted Bundy? / The British problem is not so much teeth as ears / When I die, can I keep my brain? / What’s that got to do with the price of edible dirt in Haiti? / And more

Civilization in Decline
The economy’s so bad in Haiti that dirt is part of the menu ("cookies" of vegetable shortening, salt, and dirt), but now the price of dirt is rising (Seriously) . . . . . An outbreak of the lung fungus histoplasmosis has hit one company’s employees in Iowa after a reception at the governor's mansion (Bonus: They're employees of the American Lung Ass’n) . . . . . Rio’s Carnival is next week, and one organization is set to soberly remind people of the Holocaust, with a parade float carrying models of dead bodies, which will go over great in the midst of the drums and near-naked, dancing women . . . . . However, also in the parade will be fabulous babe Angela Bismarchi, fresh from her 42nd plastic surgery (nylon-wire implants around her eyes to appear Asian), leaving her five short of the world record by American Cindy Jackson (who has moved on to skincare products) . . . . . Now an "art project" but someday available on Amazon: Ryan Hobson’s Serial Killer Trivia Game, in which you march around the board as you accumulate the bodies of victims of Ted Bundy, et al, by answering questions about their crimes . . . . . A class-action lawsuit in Ohio asks the spiritual question, Is it any of my business whether I can bury my relative with his brain (even if doctors aren’t finished with it)? (Medical examiners’ position: Dude, nothing matters but the soul!) . . . . . It was a widely circulated "bizarre news" story yesterday, but Yr Editor said it was really about Britain’s Nat’l Health Service taking a big, big hit: The father of an 11-yr-old boy said he was "amazed" that his son had endured 9 yrs of partial deafness attributed to "doctors" diagnosing his problem as "ear wax," when all it was was a cotton bud stuck in his ear! Imagine that! How weird! [Ed.: We have "doctors" in the U.S. who not only take out ear wax, not leave it in, but can tell the difference between wax and cotton; furthermore, we have fathers in the U.S. who would have been much less "amazed" than "litigious."]

The Human Condition Today
A 16-yr-old girl is on trial in Britain for trying to kill her parents, and apparently she had set up a video camera and recorded the whole thing [Ed.: She’s a failed murderer, but what she really wants to do is to direct!] . . . . . Again! Again! A driver somehow, for some reason, wanders onto railroad tracks and can’t get off!

Your Daily Loser
In Durban, South Africa, Mr. Mthandani Nqetho stole something and made a run for it, leaping from a building, but landing with both feet on the sharp spikes of an iron fence, impaling himself; in excruciating pain, he freed one foot but he may have been stuck for as long as 12 hours (in clock time; more like "12 days" in Nqetho’s mind) before someone found him. (Note to file: Crime doesn’t pay.)

NOTW Lite
NY attorney-general Andrew Cuomo proposed to crack down on sex predators by forcing them to register their e-mail addresses so Facebook et al can deny them access [so I guess that takes care of that!] . . . . . A German travel agency set up a nude vacation trip, kicked off with a nude airline flight (pilot and flight attendants remain dressed) (But Agence France-Presse says in the old days, East Germans loved their nudism!) . . . . . Awesome: There is no better job in the world than this guy’s, dressed as a condom-encased schlong, wandering the beach in Chile, chatting up the ladies about HIV . . . . . Entry-level web editor on duty at Yahoo! News ‘cause that’s the only way this headline made it live.

Things That Seem Wrong
What are the major human rights problems in the world? Last week, the UN’s Human Rights Council held an emergency session to condemn something or other by Israel. It was the Council’s 13th session; 12 have been to condemn Israel. In fact, the 47 Council members include an array of human rights abusers such as China, Cuba, Russia, and Saudi Arabia, and an Arab-African coalition has blocked all attempts to go after any country other than Israel. (Bonus: all this info from a law student who's that one actual spawn of Woody and Mia.)

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe next time.™

Newsrangers: Ginger Katz, Gerald Sacks, Perry Levin, Kathryn Wood, Cindy Hildebrand, Mark Neunder
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Things To Worry About On Monday: Buying a hitman on Craigslist / Counting the sheets of toilet paper / Dying in a plane crash is your own fault / The double-murderer wearing "fuzzy, lion-faced slippers / And more!

Civilization in Decline
There was a high-speed police chase in Osaka, Japan, with Hirofumi Fukuda pursued at times by, er, 460 patrol cars . . . . . Prime Minister Brown wants to create a "statement of values" for Britain (since Britain kinda evolved over time and didn’t start with any founding document like the U.S.’s Declaration of Independence), but the trouble is, of course, that one of Britain’s prime values is ridiculing things like a statement of British values [NY Times] . . . . . Australian shrink Yolande Lucire thinks SSRI drugs, such as Ritalin, can induce violent behavior if taken too long and then stopped, which is a minority opinion in the shrink community, which means, to the medical board in Sydney, anyway, that Lucire has to go see a shrink, herself . . . . . In Greensburg, Pa.: "Chess Game Erupts in Gunfire" . . . . . The power of the gov’t dole: The British gov’t is considering paying people to lose weight, and two Atlanta-area schools are considering paying students to attend study hall . . . . . Dow Kim of Merrill Lynch, and Thomas Maheras, of Citigroup, are such prescient leaders that they "led" their respective firms to an eventual $34B write-down in subprime loans last yr, and both were eased out of their jobs, but, voilà!, in the American Business Model of the 21st century, they’re already back in demand! [NY Times]

The Human Condition Today
Former hotshot health-insurance exec David Colby, 54, married, and pudgy, allegedly wooed at least 12 women over the last 3 yrs with promises of wealth and marriage (Bonus: One side squeeze is also pissed because he denied her insurance claim for kidney surgery) . . . . . A sophisticated, prize-winning British novelist sued a shoe factory alleging that its fumes caused body numbness, which made her turn to writing pulp novels (and she just won £115,000 [about $229k]) . . . . . Popular singer Na Hoon-a was tired of South Koreans believing that a mob boss had castrated him and so angrily pulled his pants partway down on live TV to prove ‘em wrong (but chickened out before the money shot) . . . . . Daniel Thompson, formerly owner of one of those Utah businesses that remove the sex and profanity from Hollywood films for Utahns’ delicate eyes and ears, was busted for alleged sex with underage girls . . . . . A retiree with nothing else to do noticed that toilet paper rolls seemed to be getting shorter, which he then verified by counting his daily sheet-usage, but then the Denver Post tried to replicate his work and found no shortages (After all, he’s 81) . . . . . Guilty or Not Guilty, You Make the Call: When he was arrested Friday afternoon in his car, he was wearing pajama pants, a hoodie, and "fuzzy lion-faced slippers" [Of course there’s a photo!] . . . . . Marie Linscott was busted for, police said, placing an explicit "help-wanted: hitman" ad on Craigslist (Bonus: She wanted her romantic rival "eradicated") . . . . . Spanish exec Tomás Delgado filed a lawsuit against the estate of the teenage bicyclist he accidentally hit at 100 mph and killed, demanding $29k compensation for damage to his car (Seriously) . . . . . Luis Jimenez, 24, was busted in Austin, Tex., because he hid child porn in a ceiling gap but forgot it when he moved and the successor-resident’s cat got at it.

Your Daily Loser
Ever do something, and then a little while later realize it was the stupidest thing you ever did but by then it’s too late? Frankfort, Ky., attorney William Johnson, 75, feels your pain. In a 2006 take-off crash of a Comair commuter airliner at the regional airport in Lexington, Ky. (which the FAA has blamed on pilot error), all 47 passengers were killed, and 21 lawsuits have been filed, and Johnson represents the only survivor, the flight’s first officer, who is one of the defendants. And one of his defenses: Hey, the passengers knew that bigger airports nearby were safer, but they bought tickets, anyway, so it’s kinda their own fault that they’re dead. Yes, Johnson withdrew the defense shortly after filing it, but . . .. [Comair 5191]

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Readers’ Choice: A 29-yr-old Pennsylvania woman was (apparently accidentally) electrocuted when a couple’s conjugal electro-nipple-stimulation scene went bad.

NOTW Lite
High-tech venture capitalist Brad Feld bought naming rights on . . a men’s room at a technology building at Univ. of Colorado (Seriously, and for only $25k) . . . . . The headline writer at the Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune was in a no-win situation, charged with writing a title for a story announcing that Moundview Memorial Hospital would start doing breast implants . . . . . Great idea for a movie: A Cincinnati woman wants to be a ballerina, but to pay the bills while she trains, she becomes a welder! (Bonus: Her first name is Alex, sort of) . . . . . A 90-ft blob of grease, flour, and rags is clogging a sewer line in Lewiston, Maine, but the blob is surely better explained than the photo illustrating the story on Portland’s WMTW-TV.

Things That Seem Wrong
British mom Yvonne Bray told a hair-raising story of her Christmastime shopping trip to NYC with her two teenage daughters, of her hospitalization at Elmhurst Medical Center near LaGuardia Airport, with pneumonia. She groggily "gave permission" for her daughters to be taken away and given housing for the night, but it turns out the "housing" was in a detention center, where they were treated as runaways and presumed to be trouble. When Bray came to, 30 hours later, she tracked the kids down and grabbed the first plane out of the good ol’ US of A. (Bonus: Based on the girls’ check-in at the detention center, Bray later got a letter from a federal official informing her that she was under investigation for poor parenting, though that "case" appears closed now.)

Professor Music’s Weird Links
The patented (well, it's just an application, but check out how much work went into it) Walking Through Walls Training System, which "enables a human being to acquire sufficient hyperspace energy in order to pull the body out of dimension so that the person can walk through solid objects such as wooden doors."

Newsrangers: Paul Music, Joe Littrell, Paul Di Filippo, Sam Gaines, Mark Neunder, Kerry O’Conner, Bruce Townley, Pete Randall, Lew Miller, Dan Rotar, Tom Headley, Karen Kuras, Jan Wolitzky, Mike Lewyn, Saul Gonzalez, Stephen Taylor, H.Thompson, Scott Langill, Mei Li Rapson
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Friday’s Stuff to Be Worried About: Door-to-door tattooers / Clumsy suicide bombers / The Detroit mayor, whose pants are on fire / A $5 hitman? / Amateur bullfighters / He’s only a drug dealer, not a bank robber / Drew Peterson wants a date / And more!

Civilization in Decline
At Luther High School, Luther, Okla. (25 miles from Oklahoma City, pop. 612), students have been shown 46 hours of popular Hollywood films so far this school year during class time . . . . . The Detroit Free Press got hold of 14,000 of Mayor Kilpatrick’s text messages, which showed that he lied under oath not only when he said he wasn’t schtupping his chief of staff but also when he testified that he wasn’t involved in the firing of two whistleblowing cops . . . . . Fine Points of the Law: The Escobedo right (not to be browbeaten by cops while you’re waiting for a lawyer to arrive) trumps an actual ejaculatory admission, and a schoolteacher accused of sexual abuse is set free . . . . . It was a Muslim’s turn to give the opening prayer for an Iowa Legislature session, but the lay of the land is that session-openers pray for the lawmakers' salvation and wisdom, not "protection from the Great Satan" and "victory over those who disbelieve" . . . . . California environmentalism got all tangled up with itself, as one Prius driver with redwoods in his back yard looks like he’ll have to obey state law and chop ‘em down, in that they’re blocking the sun from his equally-Prius-type neighbor’s solar panels.

The Human Condition Today
In the Colombian countryside, two words bring out the Red Cross, stretchers, bandages, etc., and those two words aren’t "civil war," but "amateur bullfights" (a super-aggressive bull and dozens of men in a large pen, in what’s part-advertising, part-community-spirit, part-street-theater) [NY Times] . . . . . Chutzpah: The ex-cop Drew Peterson (who lots of people like for the October disappearance of his wife) got turned down by a Chicago radio station when he proposed a "Win a Date with Drew" game (Seriously) . . . . . Afghan jihadists are evidently scraping the bottom of the barrel for suicide bombers, in that, for the second time in two days, a bomber, while making preparations to blow himself up, blew himself up . . . . . Recurring: In Springfield, Mo., a door-to-door, er, tattoo salesman, with a jury-rigged gun, actually picked up some customers (including this woman, who had to be hospitalized) . . . . . An employee of an architectural firm misunderstood a help-wanted ad, thought she was being replaced, and thus trashed the firm’s computer files (but she really wasn’t being replaced, but now she’s being replaced) . . . . . A DUI woman who fatally plowed into a bicyclist in Tucson, Ariz., and who was in line for a sentence as light as 4 yrs actually got 10½ after the judge heard a jailhouse recording of her laughing about the victim, i.e., a combo "tree-hugger . . bicyclist . . Frenchman . . gay guy."

Your Daily Loser
An Independence, Mo., man tried to contract out a hit for a down payment of, er, $5 (Bonus: He wanted his female roommate to kill the girlfriend of his ex-lover so he could have the man to himself).

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Eric Norton, 37, Williamsport, Pa., appears to be yet another possessor of child pornography who never managed moderation; he somehow felt he needed 300 videos and 6,000 pictures.

NOTW Lite
In Slidell, La., two guys showed up to rob a Bank of Louisiana branch, but part-way through, one flipped on the other and tried to stop him (because, it turns out, the second guy had no idea his friend was going to rob the place when he agreed to accompany him inside) (Bonus: The second guy is a drug dealer who thought the robber was just withdrawing money to pay him back ["I’m just a drug dealer."]).

Things That Seem Wrong
The McClatchy Newspapers investigation unit is once again on its game, and it turns out that Immigration and Customs Enforcement, far more often than you’d suspect, detains U.S. citizens for deportation for days or weeks at a time just because it doesn’t believe them enough to go check out their, y’know, birth certificates and things. ("I’m a citizen!" "Yeah, yeah, sure you are, Thomas.") (A 2006 study found 125 people wrongly detained then, but McClatchy says it’s way more.)

Zany
A suspected drug dealer misdirected a sales text message—to a Salt Lake City cop! . . . . . A Swedish bus line believes a gang smuggles a dwarf or child into its buses’ baggage compartments to ransack other baggage! . . . . . The Saginaw [Mich.] News accidentally ran an I’m-selling-my-horse classified ad under the section called "Good Things to Eat"! . . . . . A man in Warsaw calculated that a local letter sent snail mail but delayed two weeks actually did take longer, door to door, than a snail would have taken for the same distance! . . . . . An eyeball shipped from one Australian city to another for a transplant was mistakenly delivered to a tavern! . . . . . A military airplane crashed while bringing officers back after a flight-safety conference! . . . . . Gabrielle Ford has a disabling neuromuscular disease, Friedreich’s ataxia, for which there's no medical treatment (Bonus: Her dog has the same thing)!

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Someone opposed to anti-gay trash-talker Rev. Fred Phelps has launched Phags for Phelps to, in all earnestness, help get Phelps’s message out since nearly everyone in the country would reject Phelps if only more had heard of him.

Newsrangers: Kathryn Wood, Karl Olson, James Wicht, Mark Neunder, Perry Levin, Bob Pert, Jason Struthers, Keith Frauendorfer, Trish Cook, John Holsinger, Ginger Katz
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Wednesday's Weird Haul: He was a wonderful brother who just adored drinking and driving / Paper airplanes in space / But my boyfriend always leads me around on a leash / How else is a car thief supposed to get to court / General Butt Naked has an epiphany / And more!

Civilization in Decline
When a Minnesota hospital group decided to purge its facilities of all the gifts Big Pharma had bestowed over the yrs [Gee, wonder if Big Pharma ever expected anything in return?], the total was 18,718 (which are now headed for charities) (and a Big Pharma rep was appalled that "a lot of cynics . . want to think the worst" [but didn’t mention Yr Ed by name]) . . . . . Fine Points of the Law: 1996, pacemaker developer pledges $1.5m to Illinois’s Rush University Medical Center; 2005, Rush doctors misdiagnose the donor’s spreading cancer, donor naturally gets pissed and revokes the pledge; 2006, he dies; and Rush just as naturally says, OK, now he’s dead, where’s our $1.5m; Illinois court system to family: Pay up! . . . . . Can’t Possibly Be True (except there are photos): China’s Badaltearing Safari Park raises money by letting visitors, on a platform, buy friendly, pattable goats so they can, a few minutes later, toss them off to the gaggle of hungry lions below (seriously) . . . . . Broward County, Fla., residents are up in arms over Waste Management’s petition to raise the height of their "Mount Trashmore" dump to 280 ft from the current 225 [which is a mild firestorm compared to when Virginia Beach, which has the original Mount Trashmore, complains about name theft].

The Human Condition Today
It’s a "hate crime," she said, after a West Yorkshire bus driver kicked her and her goth boyfriend off just because he had her on a leash ("I’m [his] pet," she said) (You’re a "dog," the driver said) . . . . . A woman has stirred up the Denver area by eulogizing her brother, killed in the back seat of a DUI car ("The thing that really makes me feel much better about this is [my brother and his two friends] died doing what they loved to do . . drinking [and] going fast . ..") . . . . . Reading makes a comeback! (in that Louise Jekowski, 53, said she was looking forward to reading a lot of books in prison after killing her mom) [Bonus: Uniquely, for a contemporary perp, she admitted she is "a bad person"] . . . . . Oh, wait, reading just took a hit (in that a Galveston, Tex., resident’s house went kablooey after he set off six bug foggers without reading the label about "pilot lights") . . . . . Of course! You need to get to your court-ordered training class on time (a condition of release on stolen-car charges), and you can’t walk there (it’s ice-cold Winnipeg in January), so naturally you steal some more wheels . . . . . Another case of a jilted lover getting his revenge by passing around a sex tape of his ex- (Bonus: She was having sex with a dog).

NOTW Lite
A Japanese engineering professor is designing an 8-inch-long paper airplane (silicone-saturated paper) to be launched toward Earth from the Int’l Space Station, and owing to the size, it stands a chance of not burning up on descent (and owing to size, it stands a chance of never being found if it lands) . . . . . There was a run on banks yesterday, but not widely reported because it was a run on banks in the virtual world of Second Life, where libertarians are learning the hard way that maybe a little bit of gov’t regulation isn’t a bad thing . . . . . A civic success program in Oakfield Township, Mich.: Neighbors swiped Jean Mansel’s Jesus yard statue until she agreed to the ransom, which is a promise to start picking up after her dog around the ‘hood.

Updates
Joshua Milton Blahyl, forever renowned as Liberia’s Gen. Butt Naked (for leading his warriors into battle wearing only boots, while his soldiers wore wigs and gowns), who admits responsibility for killing 20,000 during the country’s civil war in the 1980s and 1990s, now says, er, Sorry ‘bout that, and what we need now is forgiveness and reconciliation. Actually, by 1997, he had taken to dressing up in Sunday-go-to-meetin’ clothes and evangelizing [NOTW 498, 8-22-1997 ("He says his transformation occurred one day in 1996 when he was standing nude on the front lines waiting to kill some people, and God told him to stop.")].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe next time.™

Zany
They robbed a restaurant but accidentally picked up a sack of bread instead of their loot! . . . . . Vietnamese woman traveled to Taiwan to look for her long-lost father and unknowingly wound up working for him! . . . . . A commercial cargo ship powered by a kite! . . . . . Authorities are now uncovering cases of revered clinicians for whom a disease was named but who had secret pasts that maybe involved inhumane Nazi experiments! . . . . . For the second edition in a row, the phone book covering Calvert, Md., says the governor’s office number goes to a phone-sex line! . . . . . The latest corpse to arise at his funeral and ask WTF’s going on (in Chile)! . . . . . An otherwise-diversity-minded school’s brochure cover photo is captioned, "Perfect for the [actual surname] White Family"! . . . . . A West Va. gas station employee was busted for discounting gas for her friends, from about, oh, $2.999, to $0.001!

Newsrangers: Steve Miller, Paul Music, Eric Gibbs, Emory Kimbrough, Steve Dunn, Jenny Beatty, Robert Osborne, Paul Di Filippo, Judi Rivers, Kathryn Wood, Bob Pert, Mary Durkin, Sam Gaines, Eli Christman.
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Monday’s Weird Haul: Composing best-sellers by cellphone, Highway to holiness, "We’re going to Egypt!," The one-testicle dog, The facial-hair community, Congressional candidate pulls a Katie Couric (and more!).

Civilization in Decline
LAPD tacitly acknowledged that it was punked by Hector "Big Weasel" Marroquin, 51 (and father of "Little Weasel" Marroquin), who took $1.5m from the city over three yrs for getting gang members off the streets but was actually selling them guns on the side . . . . . Oh, great, now we’ve enabled him: Slick hunk-lawyer Gary Zerola, 36, beat one date-rape charge and, via his mouthpiece-brother got all arrogant about his victory; now it’s on to the other two date-rape charges . . . . . Fine Points of the Law: Daryl Atkins has been on Virginia’s death row for 10 yrs, but he’s off now because it was actually his partner who pulled the trigger in the murder, and apparently the prosecutor knew that all along but doctored the evidence; the triggerman’s lawyer knew about it but couldn’t reveal it because it would have subjected his own client to the death penalty (but now the Virginia Bar has OK’ed him to talk) . . . . . After a raid of cells at the National Penitentiary in Honduras, it turns out that some imprisoned gang members live better than you do (and with assault rifles, grenades, dynamite, etc.) [Wait, dynamite?] . . . . . Can’t Possibly Be True: Of Japan’s 10 best-selling novels last yr, 5 were originally composed on cell phones, and apparently the genre is huge, huge, I tell ya! (Seriously).

The Human Condition Today
Fresh Out of Meds: A Minnesota woman broke into a home and attacked the resident, screaming, "We’re going to Egypt, We’re going to Egypt" and, when the resident hit her back, said, "Give me more daddy, I like it, I like it" . . . . . If chapter 35 of Isaiah has a verse about a "Holy Way" for the righteous to travel on, it must mean that Interstate 35 is blessed, every mile from Duluth to Laredo . . . . . Speaking of which, this appears to be a dispute that only God can settle: California’s Catholic-affiliated Seton Medical Center said it won’t do M-to-F-tranny Charlene Hastings’s breast-enlargement surgery because God intended her to be a man, but Charlene said she honestly feels that "God has plans for me to have this surgery" . . . . . Houston, Tex., area Congressional candidate Dean Hrbacek got busted mailing out brochures with a full-length photo of himself when apparently neither the suit he’s wearing nor the slim body it’s on are his . . . . . A Wisconsin judge actually had to issue an order from the bench, that, pending trial, defendant Ronnie Ballard, 19, must take dumps only in toilets.

Your Daily Losers
(1) You’re not a good bank robber if you pick a bank that’s in the same building as the police station and if your wheel man has drained the getaway car's battery listening to the radio while you’re inside pulling the job. (2) A guy who’s been hanging around stupid people for so long that he thinks everybody will accept anything he says: Derrick "D Rock" Dale, 21, Destin, Fla., said he didn’t intentionally steal that woman’s purse, that the strap fell onto his foot, and when he turned around, it went with him, and the next thing he knew, the purse was in his hands!

NOTW Lite
A shoplifter at a Petland store in Alberta made off with a miniature Pincher but inadvertently picked a puppy that’s kinda easily identifiable (one testicle) . . . . . Sounds Like a Joke: In West Jordan, Utah, a woman ducked into a closet to avoid a home-invasion gang, but when police arrived outside, one of the gang members tried to hide in the closet, too, inches away from her . . . . . Do-It-Yourself Punchline-Friendly: A New York woman is cured, through brain surgery, after suffering grand mal seizures nearly every time she listened to her favorite musician (her punchline: Sean Paul).

Updates
Last week’s NOTW [M040, 1-13-2008] mentioned Poland’s "lektors" who "dub" dialog from English and other movies and films, and how they all use their gruff male voices, even if the character is a young female. A reader, Andy, begs to set Yr Editor straight, though:

"Dubbing" is when all sound effects (that includes voices) of the TV program or the movie are dubbed, or done over, in another language. In this case you do not hear the original soundtrack of the movie or TV program. In Poland, the original soundtrack, including all voices, can be heard, and the lector . . . reads all the parts over the original voices. This way, you know who says what. This way, Paris Hilton does not sound like a Polish Johnny Cash because you can hear the original sound of Hilton’s voice . . .. I used to live in Poland for many years, and, let me tell you, it works like a dream.

Catching Up
[Ed.: good stories just past the three-day staleness rule]
[from the 1-9-2008 Centre Daily Times (State College, Pa.), only a briefer version available online, without the money quote, below, so you’ll just have to trust Yr Editor on this] Roy Chamberlin, 29, was charged on 1,100 criminal counts for raping a woman 200 times over the course of a year (using threats of force). He apparently would do it even when the victim’s son was home and her protests were audible:

After therapy, the husband told police he now recalls arriving home about 9 a.m. one day in June. He said he heard his wife inside yelling ‘get off me,’ ‘you’re hurting me,’ and ‘stop,’" according to the complaint. When the husband tried to get inside, he found a locked dead-bolt, to which he didn’t have a key, he said in court documents. So he pounded on the door. Chamberlin appeared "surprised and terrified" but left without incident, the husband told police. His wife was in the bedroom, "crying hysterically and trembling," he told police. But the husband said that when she wouldn’t say what happened, he didn’t push the matter due to her [recent] surgery, according to court documents.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
A place where men who practice "the bearded lifestype" can gather inspiration, including a "hall of shame" of men who tried it but gave up too fast: Whiskerino dot org!

NOTW, The Blog
Since it’s an F-State thing, here’s a quick summary of Week 1 of the Wesley Snipes tax-fraud trial: He played a whole deck of race cards about the redneck trial site "Ocala, Fla.," and then the crack federal court computer churned out a random jury pool of 80 whites, no blacks; he claimed he wasn’t even a resident of the F State (prosecutor: Uh, driver’s licenses, homestead exemption from property taxes, etc.); he claims he got suckered by a couple of guys (prosecution witnesses included big-time tax lawyers who quit Snipes or were fired because they wouldn’t go along with his scheme); an employee said Wesley got mad at her because she was filing her own withholding taxes after he told her not to take any out, in that all federal income tax is voluntary; he prays every day in front of the courthouse; any day now, the tax-resister yahoos will turn on him because he’s already cheesing out on whether his scheme was valid. [Go to Ocala.com and click the huge Wesley Snipes Trial banner at the top]

Newsrangers: Kathy Schulz, Mark Neunder, Linda Graham, H.Thompson, Larry Ellis Reed, Willis Mark (or maybe Mark Willis!), and finally, yes, still one more guy named Mark (Svevar).
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Friday’s Weird Haul: Mannequin sex (again), The dog-napping mayor, Highly particularlized medical-care complaints, Free (almost) whack-a-pedophile, Zim$10,000,000 currency (and more!)

Civilization in Decline
A German rapper got shot, which to some was an occasion for rejoicing, in that it gives the music the street cred that U.S. rappers have . . . . . Cliches Come to Life: The Times of London said it has eyeballed a recent patent application by Microsoft for technology to monitor (via their computers) employees’ heart rates, body movements and temperatures, blood pressure, and facial expressions, to detect (among other things) who’s about to go postal . . . . . Confessed Ohio murderer Kenneth Moore is in line for a $600k payout from the state because at his trial a decade ago, some-evidence-or-other was denied to his lawyer (and at his retrial, with stale evidence, he was acquitted) . . . . . In Hobart, Australia, the price for beating your childhood pedophile tormenter with a hoe (set by a judge) is A$200.

The Human Condition Today
The mayor of Alice, Tex. (pop. 19,000), Grace Saenz-Lopez, has apparently been running a seriously tacky (also inept) scam to steal a neighbor’s Shih tzu (by pretending it ran away), but intrepid TV reporter Gabe Caggiano is all over the case . . . . . Readers’ Choice: A father in Pardeeville, Wis., supposedly duct-taped his 7-yr-old to a wall in a Green Bay jersey after the boy expressed insufficient idolatry of the Packers, and the man said the incident was overblown (though the missus just got a restraining order), but there appears to be something—something—about the Packers, based on the recent obsessive Australian who sold everything and moved to Green Bay [NOTW M037, 12-23-2007] and the mother who locked her son up every Sunday so she could party at a casino where the Packers game was on the big screen . . . . . Many people don’t think much of U.S. medical care, but we actually have doctors who will take the trouble to give you a rectal exam if you come in for stitches in your head and check your sugar level by licking your toes during an eye exam [well, the latter was only the doctor’s assistant].

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Yr Editor squeamishly (because of the poor journalism, not the injury) reports that a UK company that sells clothing-store display mannequins (Displaysense) is debating whether to put a warning on its female mannequins because a customer confused one for a sex doll and got his thingie stuck (Bonus: He got it stuck in her boob).

NOTW Lite
If Dr. Pawlowski wants people to take his academic research seriously on things like women's legs, better publish under the first name "B." than his given "Boguslaw" . . . . . Once, a one-ton rodent walked the Earth, Uruguayan researchers report (but that was 2,000,000 yrs ago, which of course is "6,000" in Creation Years) . . . . . What’s grosser than a one-ton rat is Dr. Gunther von Hagens’s latest project, which is a documentary of the autopsy of a 350-lb. guy who was said to have eaten himself to death, showing, for example, how difficult it is to move the waves of fat out of the way just to look at his enlarged heart.

Updates
Yr Editor didn’t realize this until now (despite mentioning this case oh-so-many times [e.g., NOTW 717, 11-4-2001], but supposedly the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs has been barred by a federal court from department-wide Internet access since 2001 because it can’t guarantee that its servers are secured against hackers messing with records on the multi-billion-dollar Indian trust fund accounts (which are hopelessly screwed up and represent one of the worst federal gov’t failures of modern times, by the way) . . . . . Zimbabwe’s rate of inflation is now up to 25,000 percent ("officially") (street estimates: 150,000 percent), but things will soon be all right because the gov’t has begun printing (Zim)$10,000,000 bills (which will buy you two restaurant burgers) (seriously) . . . . . Kevin Strom, the white nationalist leader caught with child porn (by his wife, who came home unexpectedly and saw him scurrying away naked from the computer) [NOTW Daily, 10-13-2007], pleaded to one count and was sentenced, but he insisted to the judge that he absolutely was not a white supremacist or a neo-Nazi [and ya gotta admire a man for trying to protect his good name].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe next time.™

Newsrangers: Sam Gaines, Larry Ellis Reed, Harry Farkas, Steve Miller, Ginger Katz, Tony Punko, Eli Christman, Peter Maciuba, Scott Schrier, Bob Pert, Brian Kelly
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Wednesday’s Weird Haul: Extortion by dog, The observant-Jew Nazi, All kids hate clowns, Using his false eye against him, Dating by smell, Another waistband-holster tragedy, Casinos healthier than hospitals (and more!).

Civilization in Decline
The Kenyan Human Rights Comm’n (!) concluded that the killings and arson following the Dec. 27th election were not due to primitive tribalism but just Kenyan politics as usual (with equivalent-$8 in get-out-the-vote money buying a church burning) . . . . . Life Imitates a Famous National Lampoon Cover: In Randburg, South Africa, conmen holding dogs approach stopped drivers and get them to buy ol’ Buddy—or else they’ll kill him . . . . . Of course children hate clowns, but here’s a British poll of 250 kids, and every damned one of ‘em hates clowns.

The Human Condition Today
Missouri statutory rapist Norman Toler went to federal court last week to insist that he just must have kosher meals to strengthen his devout Jewish soul (Bonus: He’s a Hitler-loving white supremacist with a bodyful of Nazi tats) . . . . . Thinking outside the box by British police: If we pay an artist to paint dreamy cloud-scapes on the windows of a tavern, that’ll calm down the riff-raff . . . . . No Satanic sex-abuse cult at this Texas elementary school but just one 5-yr-old girl teaching two others how to play doctor, and now the principal is being sued in federal court (Bonus: Mother said the principal should have done something. Principal: I did; I asked your daughter about it, and she denied playing. Mother: You should have known my daughter was lying).

Your Daily Loser
Recurring Theme: Derrick Kosch, 25, in the process of robbing the Village Pantry convenience store, Kokomo, Ind., tucked his gun into his waistband to gather up the cash . . . and no longer has a full testicle set.

NOTW Lite
This Japanese robotic work suit (available in 4 yrs, when Yr Editor will start needing something like it) makes even bending your knees easier . . . . . News that sounds like a joke: big happenings about something called The Astrological Magazine . . . . . A Calgary, Alberta, good Samaritan who got beat up and nearly carjacked when he stopped to "help" on the side of the road: "If there was [in the future] a blonde, half-naked chick running away from a guy with a chainsaw, I wouldn’t stop."

Things That Seem Wrong
For the third time in little over a year, a Wisconsin state agency has sent out mass mailings that included the addressees’ Social Security numbers on the labels . . . . . Indiana inmate David Buntin served 11 yrs before he was DNA-absolved of a rape, but then somewhere between a judge, a court clerk, and his lawyer, no one told the warden to let him go for two more yrs (but Buntin said he’s "not mad," just suing).

Updates
Jeb Corliss, who is one of those websuits working daily on being the first person to fly and land without a ‘chute [this week’s NOTW M040, 1-13-2008], is also an all-star "base-jumper" (e.g., off the Empire State Building) and will file a lawsuit this week against that building’s owner because security guards roughed him up when he (trespassing, of course) tried to jump in 2006 (causing, naturally, "severe emotional distress") . . . . . The other shoe fell, on Archbishop Earl Paulk of the something-or-other church in Atlanta, who admitted (in a 2006 deposition) to extra-marital sex only precisely one single time ever [NOTW Daily, 11-20-2007], but it turns out he’s been spraying sperm around for a while, and he’s now charged with perjury.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Actually, it’s the same link as Monday (the pit-bull armor), but as curious readers pointed out after browsing the entire site, it’s really the squirrel armor that needs to be appreciated.

NOTW, The Blog
Once again, a reporter has made the wide-eyed discovery that Kopi Luwak coffee is brewed with beans that were previously digested and excreted by Asian civet cats. Imagine that! See NOTW 301, 11-12-1993, NOTW 586, 4-30-1999, NOTW 864, 8-19-2004, or the morgues of almost every newspaper in the English-speaking world, or 92,000 Google Search links. This reporter’s name is Sara Neufeld of the Baltimore Sun, and Yr Editor guesses that her next story is about her breathless uncovering of the fact that the Indianapolis Colts used to play in Baltimore . . . . . Here are several stories that have passed Yr Editor’s staleness timeline (and I’ll have to get a special section for those!): (1) A New England Journal of Medicine article says if you have heart trouble, spend your time in a casino or an airport and not a hospital because you have to get defibbed in 2 minutes, and in most places, people go into panic mode and help you, but lots of hospital staff tend to yawn when just-one-more patient starts struggling. (2) Eric Holzle has just started the dating site ScientificMatch.com, which has all the usual questionnaires about likes and dislikes but also the coup de grĂ¢ce: It’ll look at the structure of your histocompatability complex (smell-processing genes) because "couples" whose structures are similar are doomed (and actually, Holzle’s onto something there!) ($1,995 a customer, please). (3) Not online that I can find, but from the Circleville (Ohio) Herald, 1-12-2008: "News of Record, Ashville Police": "A 73-year-old resident on Lexington Avenue reported an unknown female(s) [sic] had entered his room, removed his bad eye from its socket, then used his eye to find his wallet under the pillow and remove three $50 bills from it while he slept sometime during the previous week. He then advised people are always watching him with his eye, and he wants them to stop. A report was taken . . .."

Newsrangers: J.D. Holsinger, Scott Schrier, Roger Gulbransen, Kelvin Norton, Emory Kimbrough, Michael Grant, Bob Pert, H.Thompson, Sam Gaines, Mark Neunder, Steve Miller, Gary Goldberg, Lurene Haines, Trish Cook
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Things You Didn’t Know: Serving hobbyist artistic scrapbookers is a $2.6B industry in the U.S. ("adult videos" is said to be only four times that much). There’s a Hall of Fame for scrapbooking. A superstar just got booted out of the Hall. She was booted out because she let someone else do a photo for her scrapbook. Because of that, other scrapbookers treat her with the vitriol that Dick Cheney would get at an ACLU convention. Did I mention that scrappers spend $2.6B a yr?

Civilization in Decline
Yet another one of those art exhibits: Chinese-born Brit Terence Koh unveiled his statue of 74 plaster figures, many of the men in which (including Jesus) have John Holmes-size-plus erections (gallery: Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead) . . . . . Defying all pre-1980s stereotypes of Poles, a teen genius in Lodz, Poland, built a remote control, hacked into the municipal train system, and had himself some fun . . . . . It’s Good to Be a British Prisoner (continued): A university study submitted to the Ministry of Justice says that not only is the prison system required to allow inmates to FedEx their sperm out for fatherhood (as the European Court of Human Rights recently ruled) (and as Darwin is rolling over in his grave about) but the equivalent procreative apparatus needs to be set up for female inmates (i.e., full IVF facilities).

The Human Condition Today
Amsterdam airport authorities arrested a "priest" who had cocaine taped to his legs underneath his robes (but he gets extra credit for insisting that it was "holy sand") . . . . . An 8-yr employee of Ace Hardware headquarters was among the latest round of U.S. layoffs, but it probably had more to do with the fact that he committed $152M worth of bookkeeping errors, that cost the company $10M to fix (even though not a speck of fraud was involved) . . . . . A 5th-grade teacher is in trouble in Yokohama for unconventional discipline: getting the entire class to line up so she could walk down the line and slap each one in the face . . . . . And finally, a Los Angeles Times dispatch yesterday from China defies fair summarization so let’s just say crickets: singing crickets, pro fighter crickets, cricket beauty pageants, cricket steroids, cricket fights on big-screen TV to analyze punching and tossing-by-jaw, serial sex before fights, eating well and sleeping in fancy digs, bringing in the big bucks, cricketmania!

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Police in Bergen, Norway, finally nabbed (after 30 yrs!) the guy known as "Pocket Man" for his m.o. of approaching young boys and asking for help fishing something out of his pants pocket (which naturally has a big hole in it!) (Bonus: He had a clean record, owns his own big-time business, earns the equivalent of $570k/yr).

NOTW Lite
Arrested for attempting to drive over her husband: the wife of Mr. King Money Tarzan Jenkins . . . . . Sounds Like a Joke: (1) Health officials in Salinas, Calif., shut down a home because of excessive mercury levels, which came about because the mother’s boyfriend had given the kids a jar of mercury to go play with, and (2) In Toronto, there’s vegetarian haggis [which, come to think of it, probably couldn’t be worse than the original and might be tastier, (as would any of Yr Editor’s boiled shoes, by the way)].

Things That Seem Wrong
The downside of a piecemeal approach: Now that animal-rights activists have basically abolished horse-slaughtering in the U.S. (next stop: all of North America), it turns out that the nags merely get transported (uncomfortably) to Mexico and Canada for slaughter, where PETA and existing "euthanizing" protocols are much weaker.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
To protect your beloved pit bull when you send him into battle, you surely won’t scrimp on the pit-bull armor.

NOTW, The Blog
Twice last week Yr Editor’s Inbox was unusually flooded—with tips to the stories about the guys wheeling their own (dead) Bernie down to the check-cashing office and about the British twins supposedly separated at birth and who unknowingly married each other later on. The first one appeared here [NOTW Daily, 1-9-2008] because I found it before the major news outlets picked it up, and in fact, it was posted here ahead of the dozens of tips I have received so far. The twins story I’m laying off of altogether because it doesn’t yet look legit. It’s here if you haven’t seen it yet, but the "news" comes from one of the House o’ Lords Lords, David Acton, who said that a judge told him that the twins exist (but he won’t give details). For some reason, news outlets are going with it. Looks to Minister Chuck like Lord Acton was maybe trying to make a political point about donated-sperm pregnancies and pulled a horror scenario out of his arse, but, who knows, it may be a true story. It’s just that ya can’t tell yet because there’s no "reporting." Meanwhile, regarding an important story about which there’s actually been some on-the-ground reporting with damning circumstantial evidence, yet which "the media" haven’t mentioned yet (except National Enquirer), presidential candidate John Edwards’s friends continue to probably cover up his probable recent extramarital affair. (And speaking of circumstantial evidence, Yr Editor has never seen a better layout than this one by a physician explaining in careful detail why he thinks Gov. Huckabee must have had bariatric surgery to lose 110 lbs. in two yrs and keep it off (though Huckabee wrote a book attributing it all to diet and exercise) [link from Kausfiles.com].

Newsrangers: Steve Passen, Robb Ludwig, Steve Dunn, Joe Littrell, Steve Miller, Bob Pert
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Cynic’s Fantasy: Hand out gov’t claim forms and ask people to write down how much money they think the gov’t has to give them to make them happy. Katrina victims have been doing that (489,000 of them, and counting), and 247 have asked for $1B or more, one for $6 trillion, one for $3 "quadrillion" (The US gross nat’l product for 2006 was $12 trillion).

Civilization in Decline
The FBI’s inspector general revealed that some local offices’ phone service had been cut off for overdue bills, causing some wiretap evidence to disappear (including at least one FISA national security tap) . . . . . British "artist" Jordan McKenzie’s latest, er, effusion: a bunch of works that he’s had "happy endings" on, right there on the canvas, and then sprinkled carbon on top, but a Catholic Church spokesman is on the case: "The extraordinary thing is that someone actually thought it was art and put it on at his gallery [Centre for Recent Drawing, in Highbury, north London]" (McKenzie: "It is a diary of my ejaculations [and] they are heartfelt and delicate") . . . . . Two days after the San Francisco tiger attack, the Houston, Tex., Zoo was reportedly still playing tug-of-war from time to time with lions, where a big slab of meat on a rope is offered, but then visitors are allowed to "playfully" pull the meat away (but the caretakers say they permit it in order to keep the animals from getting bored ("He [the alpha lion] kind of lets us know when he wants to play, and we go along with that").

The Human Condition Today
The parents of a school board candidate in Carroll County, Md., now have their third annual restraining order against him (the dad says the son threatened to kill him so he could marry his mom) . . . . . The subway system in Seoul said they’d build more staff restrooms after an engineer with diarrhea fell to his death trying to relieve himself out of a moving train . . . . . Two little Iowa girls were apparently killed by their stepfather, who told police he was casting a spell that had gone bad (and their mother said she had respected the man’s religious beliefs but had asked that he keep them out of the house) . . . . . Recurring Themes: (1) An Idaho man in his 20's became the latest to see the Mark o’ the Beast on a body part and take the Gospel of Matthew’s advice to cut it off (Bonus: He then microwaved it, which is probably not in Matthew) (2) Edward Martin Jr, 46, put on the anarchists’ full-cleveland for a Virginia judge considering Martin’s misdemeanor traffic infractions (e.g., had no state license plate, but rather his own one, reading "Ed"; refused to give his residence, but rather, said he lives "in my body") (Bonus: Damn right, he sends his kids to public school!) . . . . . Victor Thompson, Laconia, N.H., 39, has begun the 4-step process of turning his skull into a New England Patriots helmet (logo, tattooed left side) (then right side, then Tom Brady’s "12" on his neck, then the Lombardi Super Bowl trophy tattooed on top) ("I’ve been thinking about doing this since I was 15 [since my head’s apparently not being used for anything else—no, no, Yr Editor added that]) . . . . . The Latest in Canadian Justice: In Whitehorse, Yukon, Thomas Wood pulled off a DUI defendant’s slam-dunk dream: He basically convinced a judge that he’s too cheap to have bought enough beer to give him a .13 reading (and in Saskatchewan, a drug addict has won her lawsuit against her supplier for a particularly bad batch of crystal meth that sent her into a coma).

Your Daily Loser
Josue Coronilla, 18, is the man who drunkenly drove into Bill McDonald’s yard, and CSI knows that because Josue stepped all up in McDonald’s two dogs’ caca when he made a run for it.

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Michael Gass, 58, was picked up in Davie, Fla., standing there naked in some woods near a community swimming pool (Cop: "The defendant admitted to taking his clothes [off] to view the wildlife. I asked the defendant why he would need to be naked to view the wildlife and the defendant could not answer the question.") . . . . . Yr Editor is not sure how to play this game but is absolutely certain that whatever it is, it’s a bad thing: Coloradoan David Diesburg, 22, said that when he babysat a friend’s four children numerous times, he played a game called "humping tag" on at least 50 occasions.

NOTW Lite
Best Headlines: "Cross-dressing groom turns up at his own wedding in a bride’s dress and tells guests, ‘I’m a transvestite’" or maybe "Jilted lesbian rugby player killed herself after brutally beating lover who had ‘webcam affair’" or maybe even "Urinating soldier blamed for falling Fiji tourism" . . . . . Milwaukee, Wis., prosecutor Warren Zier told Judge William Sosnay that he’ll wear his ascot to court (instead of a necktie) any damned time he pleases, but Sosnay will have the last word.

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe next time.™

NOTW, The Blog
(1) TheSmokingGun.com turned up a driver surviving .72 blood-alcohol, which it says eclipses its previous reported high of .69. The .72 is from Oregon, where a .55 was reported in November. Yr Editor now adds Oregon to Wisconsin as the states that, rather than claiming the drunkest drivers, need to check the protocols on measuring the blood-alcohol (or the medical texts need to be rewritten, to acknowledge humans' superior sh*t-faced abilities). (2) Yr Editor takes great, what, pleasure, well, no, bewilderment, I guess, in informing you that as of the weekly column that will debut on Sunday (NOTW M040, 1-13-2008), Yr Editor will have somehow strung out this News of the Weird franchise for 20 full years ("M040" is "1,040," is 52 times 20). Unlike when I started, I am now swamped with competition, but NOTW will continue, because also unlike when I started, I now have no other abilities in life (and this one is dissipating at the rate of roughly 2 IQ points a year, allowing me to keep writing only until I do something so stupid that I appear in News of the Weird, at which point I will retire).

Newsrangers: Paul Di Filippo, Scott Langill, Ren Hayes, Marc-Oliver Wright, Debra Taylor, Mark Neunder, Bob Pert, Deborah Casey, Jonathan Case (and a cast of thousands . . well, dozens, on three of the stories)
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

NYPD arrested David Dalaia and James O’Hare, who were trying to cash roommate Virgilio Cintron’s Social Security check at a Manhattan Pay-O-Matic store. Earlier, the store clerk had refused them, saying that he knew Cintron and that Cintron would have to come by in person. The rub: Cintron had just died (of natural causes). Dalaia and O’Hare put the body in an office chair and wheeled him down the street to the store (despite the body’s Bernie-like wobbling) and were set to push him inside (as if that would cinch the deal!) when a detective having lunch nearby got suspicious.

Civilization in Decline
Among the gadgets now playing at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas: the combination Taser/MP3 player . . . . . Beyond the hallway pass and the "Mary’s sick today" note: Officials at East High School (Denver, Colo.) have asked the school board to give new student-mothers four weeks’ maternity leave after they drop, as an excused absence from classes . . . . . Recurring: Three Illinois inmates filed a $2M lawsuit over the food, that the calories and nutritional value are "not up to par" [which Jim Romenesko said is also the case at his house!] . . . . . Apparently, Naples, Italy, handles its garbage about as well as the District of Columbia operates its school system (except for the part about the local Mafia); for more than 10 yrs now, they’re doing "emergencies" every yr because they won’t fix the problem . . . . . Countryside Financial got busted straight out when it tried to scam a bankruptcy client out of her money by claiming that it had sent her 3 letters advising something or other about her escrow fund (but neither she, nor anyone else, had ever seen the letters); it turns out that they "sent" copies to her lawyer at her address that the lawyer only later moved to (i.e., if you’re back-dating something, duh-uh, you have to use the address they were at at the time of the back-date!) (Bonus: Countryside denied fraud but said it was just, er, "re-creating" the letter it should have sent when it discovered the escrow mess).

The Human Condition Today
Arrested for DUI in Texas, crashing into a mailbox and a house: Mr. Bryan Moron . . . . . Federal judge Cormac Carney (Santa Ana, Calif.) denied a motion by Toshiba in a contract case, filed by the fancy firm of Morrison & Foerster, because it came in at 4:01 p.m. on a 4:00 p.m. deadline (even though "traffic" that day actually was indeed bad!).

Your Daily Loser
A 26-yr-old shoplifter, trying to smuggle knives in his clothes out of a store in Grand Rapids, Mich., got caught by guards and scuffled, and then was knocked down, falling directly upon various of his inventory and having to be hospitalized.

NOTW Lite
Through the miracle of satellite/cable TV, an Illinois couple winter-vacationing in the F State was able to watch, right there on TV (WGN), their home burn down . . . . . It got so cold last week in the F State [Ed.: wind-chill factors below their usual 60F!] [actually the temperature itself was below 30F in most of the state] that iguanas "froze" into their hibernation state, and wildlife people had a hard time convincing compassionate Floridians caring for the ice-cold critters that as soon as it warmed up a bit, the creatures would spring back to life ("When [the 5-ft-long iguana] it woke up, she couldn’t understand why [the iguana ingrate] seemed to be coming after her") . . . . . Turns out that surgeons have to squirt saline into your brain if you have a tapeworm-infested cyst because they can’t risk actually touching it since it might break, and the little wormies would kill you; the saline will force the cyst to bob up out of the skull, over into the surgical pan, theoretically [Is there video, you ask? Oh, yes] . . . . . This is the thing to do in Japan if you just had a kid but can’t take him around for all the relatives to see: You send them a small sack of rice that’s shaped to look and feel like the infant, with a photo attached, and the relatives cuddle and coo the sack, and then they eat the rice (Seriously).

Professor Music’s Weird Links
There's not a lot of call for sheet-music arrangements for tuba solos, much less for a concert tuba soloist himself, but if you need one, Oystein Baadsvik is your man.

NOTW, The Blog
(1) OK, it’s way-no-longer-weird, but still . . when a frisky retriever dog is so excited about being let out of a truck that he jumps onto the shotgun trigger, resulting in a fatal shot to his master’s femoral artery, well—. (2) NOTW provides solutions! Hugo Chavez told interviewer Naomi Campbell that he’s of a mind to pose shirtless ("Touch my muscles!"), which could be all that our friend Akinwale Arobieke needs in life (He’s the fella doing time in the UK for being unable to stop feeling up men’s muscles on the street [NOTW M036, 12-16-2007].) (3) Last week a Los Angeles Times dispatch from Beijing [Link from Obscure Store] lauded China Daily’s weird-news page ("China’s news of the weird"), with copious examples, including how welfare workers used puppets to demonstrate masturbation to the mentally disabled. "‘[P]sychologists said previous attempts at teaching the mentally disabled about masturbation had led to misunderstandings and even proved dangerous.’ [China Daily] did not elaborate." (4) Yr Editor can see by the Subject: lines of this morning’s unusually heavy e-mail that there are an awful lot of tips to stories that I had already written up by 5 a.m. Sorry not to have time to Newsranger you today.

Newsrangers: Randy Johnson, Perry Levin, Mindy Cohen, Emory Kimbrough, Mark Neunder
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Scott Gomez Jr. filed a lawsuit against Pueblo County, Colo., and all the jail guards for the way the county operates its lockup, from which Gomez twice escaped (once successfully, with the second one resulting in serious injuries when he fell off a 40-ft wall). Gomez’s claim: I told ‘em after the first time that they should’ve fixed that E-Z-Escape set-up, and they didn’t, so my injuries are their fault. And when I told the guards that, they beat me up. [Ed.: "Gomez. Talk to me!" (Is that anybody else's favorite TV show?)]

Civilization in Decline
The monkey problem in India (they breed, they move to cities, they’re untouchably holy) was proposed to be addressed in Himachal Pradesh state by hiring unemployed youth to catch ‘em and sterilize ‘em (and plenty of people are lining up, ready to marvel at the upcoming unintended consequences) . . . . . Sounds Like a Joke: Al Qaeda announced that it has just launched an Osama bin Laden Facebook page, Osama speeches for cell-phone downloading, and an Osama ringtone (Well, actually, only the middle one is true, but still—) . . . . . The Washington Post has a report on the recent scandal of guards sleeping in the "ready room" at a Pennsylvania nuke plant, but the laxness problem appears to extend way up to the honor-system-intensive Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The Human Condition Today
A 54-yr-old man provoked a traffic accident in Boulder County, Colo., causing only minor injuries, but he nonetheless took The Only Way Out, with a gunshot . . . . . The death toll this year in Japan from eating New Year’s "mochi" rice (said to have the consistency of bubble gum) was at least 5, as it will be next year, and so on . . . . . A columnist for The Scotsman discovered some prim, demure ladies in Glasgow who used to be Molotov-cocktail-throwing gangbangers in their youth . . . . . Insufficient Time Watching Law and Order: Ellis Cleveland, picked up by police and informed that he was wanted for four bank robberies: "Four, I didn’t do four. I only robbed three banks. But it doesn’t matter because I’m not talking to you guys. I want a lawyer." (Bonus: Cleveland is apparently not counting the fourth only because his holdup note was unintelligible to several tellers, causing him to abort.)

The F State
Marjorie Kelley, 50, of Sarasota, called 911, with chest pains, but asked please, no lights, no siren; they came with lights and siren, and she jumped to her feet and chased paramedics down the street with a rolling pin . . . . . Child molester Frederick Fretz, 45, of Marion County, choked to death on a hot dog in a federal prison in California . . . . . And here’s Theresa Rochester, 24, Palm City, who concealed her dope so inadvertently-provocatively in her pants that the female deputy thought she was a man "glad to see her."

Your Daily Losers
(1) Relatives noticed that Geraldine Magda, 44, who had come to sit with their dying sister, 59, on her deathbed, was leaving just as the sister’s gold/diamond wedding ring went missing from her finger (and Magda had previously swiped jewelry from the family, they said) (Bonus: When the ring was found in Magda’s purse, she said she had no idea how it got there) . . . . . (2) A man was arrested in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., for allegedly shoplifting 42 items from a Family Dollar store, with the total haul worth an estimated, uh, $132—and he was charged with petit larceny, in fact, petty petit larceny.

NOTW Lite
People With Too Much Time: Geoffrey Roche and his son Alexandre, in Toronto, have launched websites Dogbook and Catbook, where a million dogs and a half million cats have created, so to speak, their own pages, with their likes and dislikes ("Her [Annabelle, a Toronto mutt] web profile says she likes to run, jump, and eat steak," which of course pretty much sums up the other 999,999 Dogbook profiles).

Things That Seem Wrong
Dallas, Tex., District Attorney Craig Watkins, to just-DNA-exonerated Charles Allen Chatman: "You are an example of how justice is supposed to work." Er, well, Chatman had actually been wasting away in prison for 27 yrs before justice worked.

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

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Peter Hine, Mark Neunder, Steve Dunn, Bruce Alter, Ken Berkun, Bob Pert, Victor Hoisington, Bren McCullough
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Fine Points of the Law: Joshua Hoge has claimed his late mother’s estate, which would generally not be allowed, seein’ as how he was the one who murdered her, but he’s schizophrenic and was found "not guilty by reason of insanity," and now says, well, "not guilty" means "not guilty" (Bonus: The "estate" he's trying to inherit, of about $800k, comprises the money mom "won" for wrongful death because a county health clinic failed to give Joshua his meds and thus was responsible for her death.) (Yes, you read that right; he's seeking to inherit the money she "won" because he killed her.)


Civilization in Decline
According to a Washington Post survey, if you spend a lot of time browsing government Internet sites, and you don’t yet know a lot of other people’s Social Security numbers, you’re just lazy . . . . . The continued placing of the American brain on standby: A 32-yr-old man (a computer technician!) had his car creamed by train north of New York City after he cluelessly drove it onto the tracks because his GPS navigator told him that’s where he needed to be (but he got out the door in time).

The Human Condition Today
Austin, Tex., cop Scott Lando, 45, is on paid leave, being investigated for repeatedly hiring a prostitute and paying her in part by letting her pick some fashions from Mrs. Lando’s closet (saying his ol’ lady’d "never miss" this thing or that) . . . . . Chattanooga, Tenn., judge John Hagler resigned in November when a tape containing graphic dialogue of a murder-torture surfaced, with the voice sounding very much like Hagler's, and now everyone in town wants to hear it, but authorities say, not yet . . . . . Pat Robertson made his annual New Year’s predictions, based of course on actually chatting up the Lord; he admitted that last yr’s predicted major terrorist attack on the U.S. didn’t happen but naturally attributed that to the Lord’s compassion in changing His mind in response to prayers from The 700 Club viewers (Bonus: God also told Pat who would win the Presidency in November, but Pat's not saying because Andy Rooney'd make fun of him) (Seriously) . . . . . The guy who was mayor of Anderson, Ind. (pop. 59,000), until Tuesday (he had been beaten for re-election in November), has decided not to hand over power if he can help it (based on another one of those Fine Points of the Law) . . . . . Can’t Possibly Be True: A Houston, Tex., woman (unnamed so far to protect her kids) flew off to Nigeria to get married, leaving her five kids (ages 1 up to 15) behind with little food and no money (Seriously).

People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
Joshua Stetar, 20, who says he is a "very conservative" Christian in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., got carried away in an online Halo game, with two girls ages 6 and 15, from Spokane, Wash., and an e-mail obsession ensued, and the next thing you know, according to police, he’s coming to rape them and in fact got in his car and drove to Spokane.


NOTW Lite
Here’s another restaurateur (this time in Houma, La.) with an all-you-can-eat buffet that’s not (well, it is, with a $10 surcharge) (The waitress: "Y’all fat, and y’all eat too much") . . . . . When fruit flies get drunk, they get all frisky and not choosy about which gender they go after . . . . . The Transcendental Meditation people at Maharishi U., Fairfield, Iowa, apparently gave a boost yesterday to Sen. Obama [but Yr Editor was alarmed to read that the TMers have been Yogic Flying in Fairfield, at critical mass, every single day, yet the U.S. is still—still—headed in the wrong direction, according to polls].

Updates
The lovely Kumari Fulbright, the beauty queen cum law student cum law clerk cum torture arrestee [NOTW Daily, 1-2-2008] is updated in these particularly touching after and before photos [and c’mon, you still would!].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
Not today. Maybe next time.™


NOTW, The Blog
(1) Yr Editor has made the point about website news editors not quite having the chops of real newspaper editors, and here’s certainly a lede sentence that’d have never seen the light of day in a reputable city room [from the website of WTSP-TV, Tampa-St. Petersburg]: "New information has been released regarding the sperm whale that came into the mouth of Tampa Bay over the weekend."
(2) Roger Clemens’s injection explanation, which emerged yesterday as advance word on his Sunday 60 Minutes interview, sounds phony and gives Yr Editor yet another chance to rant on one of his favorite topics: accused persons claiming they "can’t talk about" it now, but they just "can’t wait to get to court," months from now, when "all the facts will come out" and "everyone can see I’m innocent." Clemens now says trainer Brian McNamee injected him not with illegal steroids, but with two perfectly legal substances, vitamin B-12 and lidocaine. This is a really, really simple, totally exculpatory explanation. Question: Why has it taken Clemens 19 days, following the release of the Mitchell report, to produce it? Yr Editor asks you, What would you have done if you received injections of perfectly legal substances and then found out that injector, to brown-nose a prosecutor in a plea agreement, claimed he had illegally injected you, thus ruining your stellar reputation? Here’s what I would have done were I Clemens: immediately walked out of my house, down to the curb, waited for the first TV reporter to show up, grabbed the microphone, and screamed into the camera, "It was vitamin B-12! B-12! Not steroids! That lying little punk McNamee, that turd of a human being, is ruining my name just to save his own punk ass, that sniveling little piss-ant! It was B-12! B-12!" And walk away. Society has somehow come to accept the lawyerly response of "I can’t talk about it." Yr Editor’s point: You only need to wait for "court" for the facts to come out in if they’re either unfavorable to you or so ambiguous or contradictory that they must be ever-so-carefully presented and debated. You don’t need "court" if the facts couldn’t be simpler (steroids, no! B-12, yes!). That Clemens’s lawyer would not let him give this simple explanation earlier means (despite the lawyer’s vacuous public explanation) that, probably, the lawyer didn’t intuitively trust Clemens’s denial to him and assumed that more whack-a-moles were out there ready to pop up. (One obvious reason why a person in Clemens’s position might want extra time is to plumb his brain thoroughly for recollections of anyone—anyone at all—who might credibly contradict him if he went public with any particular explanation, such as the B-12 one.) Hence, Yr Editor concludes that either: (1) Clemens is guilty as charged, or (2) Clemens is not guilty as charged but is harboring some other negativeness that would be revealed if his relationship with McNamee were freely, uninhibitedly discussed. Yr Editor leaves you with this: When you hear a lawyer say that his client "can’t talk about" it, there’s a reason, and the reason absolutely is not that his client is as innocent as a newborn baby. "Innocent until proven guilty in a court of law"? Get over it.

Newsrangers: Karen Pradhan, Mark Neunder, Karl Olson, Tom Barker, Liana McGowan, Peter Hine, Stefan Palys, Mindy Cohen, Peter Bradley, Eric Gibbs, H.Thompson, James Wicht, Justin Warner
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Dennis Kucinich never talks about his 1982 sighting of a UFO (disclosed by Shirley MacLaine in a new book), but the Wall Street Journal got the skinny from his two companions that night. (Most logical evidence: The craft, or thingie, or spirit, whatever, chose to hover near a vacation home owned by MacLaine, a notorious kindred spirit to other-dimensionals.) [A large portion of Americans believes that we are, as they say, not alone, but Kucinich, by his silence, appears to recognize that maybe the majority would prefer a leader who will be tough on all illegal aliens.]

Civilization in Decline
Here’s another case highlighting the British law in which criminals don’t have to pay their prison room and board, but non-criminals do (if they get gov’t compensation for the mistaken conviction) . . . . . The annual criticism is out on states that are still collecting hundreds of millions of bucks yearly from that massive tobacco company settlement but spending next to nothing on anti-smoking education (in Connecticut’s case, zero on anti-smoking) . . . . . The Washington Post’s latest salvo against the District of Calamity school system: The ($80 million worth of) boilers installed in the late 1990s have now largely broken down for lack of about $100k/yr on maintenance (e.g., classrooms in 71 schools had to be closed last February for lack of heat); in other words, if the school system had figured out how to do without just one of its many administrators, problem solved . . . . . NASA released a massive amount of data on its investigation of airline safety but intentionally put it in a form rendering alarming conclusions impossible to draw (and it’s in the genes of bureaucrats to be able to do that, or to do the opposite) (Yet, as the lead critic noted, when 8 out of 10 of the pilots who were asked for interviews, gladly gave them, it suggests they had some things to get off their chests).

The Human Condition Today
In the F State, there was a toy and children’s furniture yard sale at the home of two sex offenders (and don’t ask whose stuff it used to be) (and the Word of the Day: "Lysol") . . . . . Adam Grennan looked around the bank when he first came in, but he should have re-surveyed before he presented the holdup note because by that time, a cop in uniform was standing right behind him, with gun drawn --- embarrassing! . . . . . Readers’ Choice: The tattoo customer placed the .357 Magnum down so the tattooist could trace it for the tat design, and somehow both men wound up getting shot . . . . . The lovely former Miss Desert Sun 2006 was arrested for kidnaping and torturing her ex-boyfriend (Bonus: She’s now a law student and works for a federal judge) . . . . . Since competition is horrendous for those 65,000 visas a yr that the U.S. awards to high-performing foreign professionals, immigrants need an edge, and apparently, in Hyderabad, it’s offering prayers with the Visa God at the Chilkur Balaji temple, and maybe it works!

NOTW Lite
In Minnesota, pit bulls try to rehab their image—as assistance dogs . . . . . An Archives of Sexual Behavior article says men have huger endowments than apes because of our larger brains [Ed.: Evolutionists’ explanation: As babies’ brains grew, vaginas needed to grow to accommodate, and large penises therefore became favored. Creationists' explanation: Er . . ..].

Professor Music’s Weird Links
It’s a great time to be alive, with this Internet thing. In the old days, if you got off on seeing young women ambulating with leg casts, you just had to maybe camp out near hospitals. But now there's gimpix.com!

NOTW, The Blog
(1) Erroror: The 9-yr-old boy burglar (with a 5-yr-old wingman) on Monday was actually a 9-yr-old girl. (2) Last week, Yr Editor reported that a Whole Foods employee was in trouble with the company for tracking down a shoplifter (off the property, technically on his own time [NOTW Daily, 12-28-2007]), but here’s a 7-Eleven clerk, on duty, who not only violated company policy, he emptied his damn gun on the guy!

Newsrangers: Karl Olson, Sam Gaines, Paul Music, Emory Kimbrough
This posting to News of the Weird Daily is © 2008 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.