Tuesday, November 15, 2011

News of the Weird/Pro Edition
You're Still Not Cynical Enough

Prime Cuts of Underreported News from Last Week, Hand-Picked and Lightly Seasoned by Chuck Shepherd
November 14, 2011
(datelines November 5-November 12) (links correct as of November 14)
© 2011 by Chuck Shepherd.  All rights reserved.

NOTE:  [If] and the creeks don't rise, there'll be a supplemental Pro Edition Tuesday morning.

NOTE II:  Google Groups is not functioning well today.  If you're on one of my e-mail lists, I don't know what to tell you (as of 3:45 p.m. Eastern time, Monday, 11-14-2011).  Hang on.

The Latest Inhumane Abuse Encouraged by Rupert Murdoch, plus More Things to Worry About    

★ ★ ★ ★!

Yr Editor is a lazy journalist; Simon Eroro isn't.  He won a News Limited (News Corporation) (Evil Empire) company award in November for "best scoop," for reporting from Papua New Guinea, having submitted to a ritual circumcision in order to win the trust of, and interview, West Papua tribal freedom fighters.  (Bonus:  a circumcision with bamboo sticks!)   Daily Telegraph (London)

Prince Charles, roughing it in a royal visit to Tanzania, was ceremonially titled  by the Maasai tribe as (rough translation) "the one who makes cows cry."  (Bonus helpful response from Charles, addressing the Maasais' concern about their land being developed out from under them: "If you have access to the internet, I have a website . . ..")   Daily Mail (London)

In Toronto, Sammy the cat bitch-slapped Molly the black Labrador--in fact, Molly's owner had to stop the fight on cuts after Sammy bore down in three separate sieges.  The attack led to legal action of . . not much.  It turns out that aggressive-pet laws in Ontario are aggressive-dog laws.  Sammy skated; his owners avoided the $532 vet's bill; and Sammy the cat is now the neighborhood Big Dog.  Toronto Star

Just Can't Stop Herself:  Heather Raybon was arrested in Milton, Fla., in what police called a meth lab.  It was an uneventful bust except for the fact that Raybon had been disfigured in December 2004 by a fire that investigators are sure was the explosion of a meth lab.  She still looks bad.   WALA-TV (Mobile, Ala.) [slide show Not Safe For Stomachs]

Classic Recurring Themes:  (1) Oregonian Kent Couch has scheduled tomorrow (Nov. 15th) for his historic "lawn chair over Baghdad" balloon ride.  He's a veteran daredevil but, as well, benefits from the experience, 29 years ago, of Californian Larry Walters, who ultimately reached 16,000 feet in his chair before descending near LAX (where he was arrested, by the way).  (2) New caganer in Spain's Catalan region this Christmas season:  Sarah Palin, taking a dump.  (Caganers are "Where's Waldo?"-like figurines that populate Nativity scenes, always while going potty.  There used to be a reason for that.)   Los Angeles Times   ///   Larry Walters [Wikipedia]   ///   Daily Telegraph (London)   ///   Caganer [Wikipedia]

Absurdities

A photograph of the Rhine River by German Andreas Gursky sold at a Christie's auction for $4.3 million.  [ed. Wonder what it would cost to just buy the property that Gursky shot from so you could look at the same view, live, every day?]   Associated Press via Yahoo News

Finally some good news for besieged Bank of America!  Looks like they got away with collecting $35 per overdraft charge, against 13,000,000 overdrafters (some many times), under a one-sided and inadequately disclosed policy.  They settled the class-action lawsuit for $410 million, which, if it all went to customers, would still be less than paying back just one of those charges per customer.  (Of course it didn't all go to customers; lawyers made $123 million.  Customers get $27 each.)  (Judge: The case yielded a "superb" result for customers!)   Associated Press via WFAA-TV (Dallas-Fort Worth)

Losers

Jack Shay, a city councilman in Ketchikan, Alaska, uses a computer but is unfamiliar with the concept of the "print queue," and as a result was exposed by a technician for having a major child-porn collection.   Anchorage Daily News

Nighttime job: stand-up comedian at local clubs.  Day job:  bank robber.  (Bonus:  After being interviewed by police and released as a suspect, he decided to rob the same bank the next day.)   WTSP-TV (St. Petersburg)

Too Much Movie-Watching:  The Australian bank manager admitted he stole the money.  But he was forced to, by "Irish revolutionaries" who (a) gave him a fatal injection and warned they'd deny him the antidote if his mission failed, and (b) besides, they had a "high-tech" bomb they'd explode at  the bank.  (Problems:  No injection, no bomb.)   Courier-Mail (Brisbane, Australia)

Purse-snatcher Cody Smith, 18, made his getaway but was subdued by police by passersby by shrubbery.   Johnson City (Tenn.) Press

Virginia state senate candidate Patricia Phillips (a member of one of the two leading U.S. political parties) mailed a brochure reading, "Always Thank a Veteran [because my opponent will not]," illustrated with a photo of a highly decorated officer . . of the Soviet Union.   TooConservative.com blog

Oh! Dear!

It's not just Taco Bell workers who get stuck on a Saturday night shift that you have to wonder about.  Kitchen workers at Morton's of Chicago in Boca Raton, Fla., filed a lawsuit claiming, among other things, that workers used to stick asparagus down their pants "next to [the] anal/genital area" before serving it to customers.  South Florida Sun-Sentinel

The Pervo Community

From "The [suspend-all-skepticism] Zone":  A Croation man was admitted to a hospital in Zagreb with an 11-cm-long anti-aircraft shell up his back door.  Police appeared less concerned about his well-being than whether he had other weapons at home.   Agence France-Presse via Straits Times (Singapore)

Self-Improvement:  Yes, I made a secret sex video with the woman, but it wasn't for perversion.  I'm a "time and motion" engineering consultant, and I just wanted to study my performance to make myself better in bed.   Daily Telegraph (London)

Readers' Choice:  The 18-year-old man was hospitalized with 300 stab wounds, but before you sympathize, he did travel, by bus, from Phoenix to Milwaukee just to have sex with the werewolf-y woman, Rebecca Chandler, 22, who said the knife stuff was consensual but might have "got out of hand."    Journal Sentinel

Your Weekly Jury Duty
[In America, you're presumed innocent . . . until the mug shot is released]


Your classic jury duty (from The Smoking Gun's weekly collection):  DUI?   ///   Intimidating a witness?

Updates & Recurring Themes

Vodka-laced tampons have returned to the zeitgeist, from a Phoenix TV station's interview with a local doctor, who thinks men, also, exploit the technology by rectal insertion.  (Tamponing bypasses all that stomach acid that dilutes the alcohol.)  Be careful out there, warned Dr. Quan.   KPHO-TV

The latest Central/South American jail in the news featuring astonishing inventories of creature comforts is a prison in Acapulco, where a surprise raid turned up 19 prostitutes, two sacks of marijuana, dozens of TV sets, several bottles of booze, and 100 fighting chickens and two peacocks.  Associated Press via The Guardian (London)

Update:  Two weeks ago in this space, Yr Editor brought you the now-deceased Mr. Sandro Michel, who arrived at his current state by inadvisedly punching out the driver of his car, causing it to careen into a lake, resulting in Mr. Michel's drowning (but not killing his wife or daughter).  Chapter Two:  The 3-year-old girl was saved that night  . . because her buoyant diaper popped her up to the surface, startling rescuers.  Fox News

Recurring:  An 8-year-old girl accidentally swallowed a locket that lodged in her throat, causing blinding pain.  As her mother rushed her toward a hospital, the car hit a pothole, jarring the girl, and once again, happenstance intervened--dislodging the locket (into her stomach, where nature took its course).   Kentucky Post (Cincinnati)

Finally, there may not even be a medical code for this among the massive number of codes in the new edition (mentioned in NOTW M236, 10-16-2011).  Do you believe the authors could leave out "Head trauma (fatal), from standing on chair and crashing to floor while swatting at bee infestation in home"?  Huffington Post

Editor's Notes

Perhaps Rachel Maddow beat Yr Editor to publication, but the airy feeling projected by Herman Cain has been appealing to me for weeks as "performance art."  Cain, on the stump:  "A poet once said . ." (and Cain then unattributedly quoted Pokemon).  The 9-9-9 tax structure, he said, came from an unprominent retail broker in the Midwest, but its real genesis may well have been SimCity, whose tax structure is 9-9-9, too.  If it is a performance, Cain's a lot smarter than anybody's giving him credit for.  Maddow explains it all on this 15-minute video.   Vodpod.com

Speaking of art, here are 32 inexplicable photos from Russia (by a guy named Petros).  You tell me.   BuzzFeed.com

And for your consuming pleasure, Cracked.com's 14 luxury sex toys, ranging from the Gold Tickler ($4,506) and the Platinum Vibrator with Encrusted Diamonds ($3,250) to the Pearl Anal Beads ($430) and the Gold Flake Massage Oil ($45).  Happy Christmas shopping!   Cracked.com
               
Newsrangers: Perry Levin, James Hoban, Sandy Pearlman, and Troy Mueller, and the News of the Weird Board of Editorial Advisors