Posts tagged as: strange

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Friday, July 18, 2008

 

Balloons carried gun away in Red Lobster executive’s ‘CSI’-like suicide

‘Thomas Hickman drove through New Mexico, police say, until his Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo ran out of gas. Then the 55-year-old North Richland Hills man walked into a field, tied helium balloons to a gun, covered his mouth with duct tape, and shot himself in the back of the head, according to New Mexico State Police.

That determination is a far leap from what authorities first suspected when Mr. Hickman’s body was discovered March 15 near Santa Rosa, N.M., about 100 miles east of Albuquerque. Authorities initially thought the Red Lobster executive had been kidnapped and slain.

But investigators came to the conclusion that Mr. Hickman committed suicide. The first clue was the bundle of white helium balloons, with the gun still attached, found snagged on bushes and cactus near Mr. Hickman’s body.’


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

 

Toddlers who dislike spicy food racist, say report

‘Toddlers who turn their noses up at spicy food from overseas could be branded racists by a Government-sponsored agency.

The National Children’s Bureau, which receives £12 million a year, mainly from Government funded organisations, has issued guidance to play leaders and nursery teachers advising them to be alert for racist incidents among youngsters in their care.

This could include a child of as young as three who says “yuk” in response to being served unfamiliar foreign food. [..]

It advises nursery teachers to be on the alert for childish abuse such as: “blackie”, “Pakis”, “those people” or “they smell”.

The guide goes on to warn that children might also “react negatively to a culinary tradition other than their own by saying ‘yuk'”. [..]

Nurseries are encouraged to report as many incidents as possible to their local council. The guide added: “Some people think that if a large number of racist incidents are reported, this will reflect badly on the institution. In fact, the opposite is the case.”‘


Monday, July 14, 2008

 

Dad Sells Baby’s Name for $100 Gas Card

‘An Orlando man has traded the naming rights to his unborn son for a $100 gas card.

David Partin recently heard that a local radio station was giving $100 worth of free gas to the listener who called in with the most interesting item to trade. Central Florida radio hosts Richard Dixon and J. Willoughby were quick to take Partin up on his offer, The Orlando Sentinel reports.

When the baby is born this winter, he will be named Dixon and Willoughby Partin — with the “and” included.

Partin’s girlfriend, Samantha, says at least her son will have an interesting story about how he got his name.’


Wednesday, July 9, 2008

 

Teenager finds baby bat in her bra

‘Abbie Hawkins, a hotel receptionist, thought her mobile phone was ringing when she felt vibrations coming from her clothes.

But she later discovered the tiny creature tucked away in the padded pocket of her underwear.

As staff and colleagues crowded around, Miss Hawkins, 19, produced the frightened bat, which was the size of her hand.

She said: “Once I realised it was a bat I was shocked, but then I felt quite sorry for it really.

“It looked very snug in there and I thought how mean I was for disturbing it.”‘


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Saturday, July 5, 2008

 

New Computer Repair Law Could Affect Both Company Owners and Consumers

‘A new Texas law requires every computer repair technician to obtain a private investigator’s license, according to a lawsuit filed in Austin. Violators can face a $4,000 fine and one year in jail, as well as a $10,000 civil penalty.

Unlicensed computer shops will have to close down until they obtain a private investigator’s license.

A private investigator’s license can be obtained by acquiring a criminal justice degree or by getting a three-year apprenticeship under a licensed private investigator. [..]

In the Austin American-Statesman, State Rep. Joe Driver, (R-Garland) explains the intent of the law, and claims it does not place such restrictions on most computer shops.’


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Thursday, July 3, 2008

 

Beirut restaurant makes meal out of war

‘At “Buns and Guns” you can order a “Kalashnikov” sandwich from a bullet-shaped menu, prepared by chefs in military fatigues with the roar of explosions as background music.

This new fast food restaurant in Beirut’s southern suburbs, where the Hezbollah movement holds sway, was the brainchild of co-owner Ali Hammoud. He said the war theme was a novel concept that had nothing to do with Lebanon’s bloody recent history.

“It’s just an idea I had, nothing more, nothing less. I could have put toys in place of the sandbags and teddy bears instead of guns. But it was just an idea,” Hammoud told Reuters. [..]

“First time I came here, I thought it was a weapons shop. When I looked at the names of the dishes, I still thought so. I only realized it was a restaurant when I went inside,” said 15-year-old Hussein al-Hajj Ali.’


Ghost-imaging could have satellite application

‘Investigators funded by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research are conducting research under the name of “ghost-imaging,” where a visual image of an object is created by means of light that has never interacted with the object.

The new technology may result in a more versatile use of field sensors, and have space applications. [..]

Ghost-imaging is similar to taking a flash-lit photo of an object using a normal camera. The image forms from photons that come out of the flash, bounce off the object, and then are focused through the lens onto photo-reactive film or a charge-coupled array.

“But, in this case, the image is not formed from light that hits the object and bounces back,” Dr. Shih said. “The camera collects photons from the light sources that did not hit the object, but are paired through a quantum effect with others that did. An image of the toy begins to appear after approximately a thousand pairs of photons are recorded.’


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Super atoms turn the periodic table upside down

‘Researchers at Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in The Netherlands have developed a technique for generating atom clusters made from silver and other metals. Surprisingly enough, these so-called super atoms (clusters of 13 silver atoms, for example) behave in the same way as individual atoms and have opened up a whole new branch of chemistry. A full account can be read in the new edition of TU Delft magazine Delft Outlook.

If a silver thread is heated to around 900 degrees Celsius, it will generate vapour made up of silver atoms. The floating atoms stick to each other in groups. Small lumps of silver comprising for example 9, 13 and 55 atoms appear to be energetically stable and are therefore present in the silver mist more frequently that one might assume. Prof. Andreas Schmidt-Ott and Dr. Christian Peineke of TU Delft managed to collect these super atoms and make them suitable for more detailed chemical experiments.’


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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

 

A sticky matter of morality.

‘So, I pay my money to Ms. Rainbow and she leads me back to a louder darker room divided by cubicle walls. She pushes me down on a worn, dirty vinyl couch and takes off her clothing. She was smooth shaven and her nipples were that perfect color of dusty rose against heavy cream colored skin. She turned around and began rubbing herself against my lap, and I let my hands begin to wonder. She kept me away from the most private of private areas but other than that I had free run of the amusement park.

No attachment, no connection, just drunk hands on drunk skin and a blissfully thought free moment.

Then I felt it. [..]’


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Political Correctness Gone Too Far

‘A serious debate has heated up in the Swedish blogosphere on Monday after an eight-year-old boy’s failure to invite two classmates to his birthday party resulted in a complaint filed with parliament. Nearly 200 outraged comments had been posted on the website of the local southern Swedish daily Sydsvenskan on Monday, just days after the paper reported about the unlikely string of events that followed a young boy’s decision to invite all of his classmates to his birthday party except two.

The policy at the boy’s school in the southern town of Lund was that all children (or all the boys or all the girls) had to be invited to parties when their invitations were handed out in class. When a teacher noticed that two children had been left out of a party list, she promptly confiscated all the invitations, according to Sydsvenskan.

“Two people in class had not been invited, and that is not allowed. The ones who were not invited felt sad and left out,” the school principal, who was not named, told the paper.

The boy’s father meanwhile decided to file a complaint with the Swedish parliamentary ombudsman, insisting his son’s rights had been trampled on. [..]’


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Saturday, June 28, 2008

 

Dyatlov Pass Accident

‘The Dyatlov Pass Accident refers to an incident that resulted in the death of nine ski hikers in the northern Ural mountains. The incident happened on the night of February 2, 1959 on the east shoulder of the mountain Kholat Syakhl (Холат Сяхл) (a Mansi name, meaning Mountain of the Dead). The mountain pass (N61°45’17”, E59°27’46”) where the accident occurred has been named Dyatlov Pass (Перевал Дятлова) after the group’s leader, Igor Dyatlov (Игорь Дятлов).

The mysterious circumstances of the hikers’ deaths have inspired much speculation. Investigations of the deaths suggest that the hikers tore open their tent from within, departing barefoot in heavy snow; while the corpses show no signs of struggle, one victim had a fractured skull, two had broken ribs, and one was missing her tongue. The victims’ clothing contained high levels of radiation. Soviet investigators determined only that “a compelling unknown force” had caused the deaths, barring entry to the area for years thereafter. The causes of the accident remain unclear.’


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Friday, June 27, 2008

 

School locked down after ‘ninja’ sighted in woods

‘It’s the case of the nonexistent ninja. Public schools in Barnegat were locked down briefly after someone reported seeing a ninja running through the woods behind an elementary school.

Turns out the ninja was actually a camp counselor dressed in black karate garb and carrying a plastic sword.

Police tell the Asbury Park Press the man was late to a costume-themed day at a nearby middle school.’


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

 

When threatened, a few African frogs can morph toes into claws

‘Biologists at Harvard University have determined that some African frogs carry concealed weapons: When threatened, these species puncture their own skin with sharp bones in their toes, using the bones as claws capable of wounding predators. [..]

“It’s surprising enough to find a frog with claws,” says Blackburn, a doctoral student in Harvard’s Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology. “The fact that those claws work by cutting through the skin of the frogs’ feet is even more astonishing. These are the only vertebrate claws known to pierce their way to functionality.”

“Most vertebrates do a much better job of keeping their skeletons inside,” he adds.

Blackburn first became aware of the clawed frogs while conducting fieldwork in the central African nation of Cameroon. When he picked up one of the hulking fist-sized frogs, it flailed its hind legs violently, scratching him and drawing blood.’


Thursday, June 19, 2008

 

Optical illusions used as virtual speed humps

‘Optical illusions are to be painted onto city streets in the United States in an effort to slow traffic.

The images will appear as 3D barriers to oncoming motorists, although the road is completely flat.

The fake speed humps are being installed at 100 junctions around Philadelphia, Pennsylvania as part of a campaign against aggressive driving.

“The goal is to change the mindset,” said Philadelphia’s chief traffic engineer Charles Denny.

“The driver sees this in the roadway, and they think that it’s some protrusion up out of the roadway, and not a perfectly flat surface. So they slow down before they drive over it.”‘


Monday, June 16, 2008

 

Walt Bayes: Schools need separate bathrooms for gay students

‘Homosexual and heterosexual students should have separate bathrooms and showers in Idaho schools, a Wilder Republican running for the Idaho House said Friday.

Walt Bayes, who gained notoriety two years ago by going on an anti-abortion hunger strike that lasted 59 days, said he wasn’t sure how the issue could be handled other than providing different facilities for gay and straight students in schools.

The topic came up after Bayes mentioned it in his campaign literature, where he wrote, “It is absolutely wrong to force any student to share the same bathrooms and showers with homosexual teachers or students.”‘


Miracle baby born twice

‘t may sound unusual, but Macie Hope McCartney was born twice. The baby, who is now one month old, was returned to the womb after surgery, only to have a second arrival 2 months later, reports the MSNBC news channel.

Keri McCartney was 23 weeks into pregnancy when an ultrasound scan revealed the foetus had a noncancerous tumour. It was the size of a grapefruit – and almost as big as the foetus itself.

Normally a tumour like this remains small and can be treated after birth, but this was not the case for little Macie Hope. It grew rapidly and was threatening the baby’s life as it was stealing nourishment from the foetus. Surgery was the only option.

Doctors put Keri into deep anesthesia to completely relax her womb and extracted about 80 percent of Macie Hope’s body – leaving only the head and upper body in the womb. Then they quickly removed the tumour and put the foetus back, since exposure to air could provoke a cardiac arrest. This part of the four-hour-long procedure lasted about 20 minutes.’


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Thursday, June 12, 2008

 

Judge Presiding Over Obscenity Trial Posts Sexual Images Online

‘The chief judge of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals posted sexually explicit photos and videos on a Web site he maintained that he has now blocked to the public, the Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday on its Web site.

The revelation about Judge Alex Kozinski came as opening statements were under way in an obscenity trial he is presiding over in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

Kozinski, 57, told the Times that he thought the material on his Web site, which included a video of a man cavorting with a sexually aroused farm animal, couldn’t be seen by the public. He took the site down and said he didn’t believe any of the images were obscene.

“Is it prurient? I don’t know what to tell you,” he told the newspaper. “I think it’s odd and interesting. It’s part of life.”‘


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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

 

Rum the remedy for snake bite on penis

‘A man bitten on the penis by a deadly snake has told how he used a cold rum can to soothe the pain while he rang his mother to say a final goodbye.

“I thought I was gone,” Daryl Zutt said of his now notorious encounter with a brown snake during a roadside toilet stop in remote far north Queensland, The Cairns Post reported.

“I thought, ‘Maybe, this is it. Maybe, I’m gonna cark it’.”

The Cairns Post revealed details of the bizarre encounter two weeks ago but the identity of the victim remained unknown until Mr Zutt came forward to tell how the brown snake took a near-fatal swipe as he relieved himself.

“I squatted down … I reckon I must’ve nearly sat on his head,” he said.

“As soon as I felt it, I yelled.

“It really hurt. [..]’

Followup to Deadly snake bites man’s penis.


Thursday, June 5, 2008

 

Fake bus stop keeps Alzheimer’s patients from wandering off

‘German nursing homes are using a novel strategy to stop Alzheimer’s patients from wandering off: phantom bus stops.

The idea was first tried at Benrath Senior Centre in Düsseldorf, which pitched an exact replica of a standard stop outside, with one small difference: buses do not use it. [..]

“It sounds funny but it helps,” said Franz-Josef Goebel, the chairman of the “Old Lions” association.

“Our members are 84 years old on average. Their short-term memory hardly works, but the long-term memory is still active.

“They know the green and yellow bus sign and remember that waiting there means they will go home.”

The result is that errant patients now wait for their trip home at the bus stop, before quickly forgetting why they were there in the first place.

“We will approach them and say that the bus is coming later and invite them in for a coffee,” said Richard Neureither, Benrath’s director. “Five minutes later they have completely forgotten they wanted to leave.”‘


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Man Offered Teens Money to Smell Feet

‘Bethlehem Police arrested a man Wednesday after they say he followed two female teenagers in his car and offered them money to allow him to smell their feet.

Police say John Robinson, Jr., 32, of Selkirik, trailed the teens in his gold and brown 1989 Chevrolet pick-up truck on Glenmont Road sometime on Wednesday.

Robinson approached the teens, according to police, and offered them 20 dollars for the chance to smell their feet in order to satisfy a sexual gratificaation.

Robinson was arrested Thursday and charged with harrassment and endangering the welfare of a child.’


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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

 

Girl snaps boyfriend bedding mum

‘It’s the dramatic moment stunned Shelley Buddington caught her cheating fella in bed — with her half-naked MUM.

After snapping the sleazy panic-stricken pair on her mobile phone Shelley posted the damning picture on her Facebook internet page for the world to see.

And she told us: “Some might think putting it on the website is an evil thing to do. But is it worse than being betrayed by your mother and boyfriend? I don’t think so!

“I just wanted to show everyone what bastards they’d been to me.”

Shelley’s nightmare unfolded when she paid a surprise visit to her 43-year-old mum Lesley, in Kingswood, Bristol.

She let herself into the house and was immediately suspicious — after spotting lover Andrew Blay’s size 9 Timberland boots placed neatly on the mat.

Barmaid Shelley, 22, admitted: “My stomach churned. For a start, Andrew was meant to be at work.’


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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

 

Police find WWII flak cannon in garage

‘German police have discovered a well-preserved WWII anti-aircraft cannon in a German man’s garage in part of a series of raids that uncovered more than €100,000 in illegal weapons, German daily Berliner Morgenpost reported on Thursday.

Police discovered the flak cannon, used by the German Wehrmacht in the Second World War, after conducting a search on a family home in the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. The 49-year-old resident was in possession of 200 illegal firearms, one kilogramme of explosives, and 15,000 rounds of ammunition. The anti-aircraft cannon was resting where a car would normally park.

“I thought I’d seen everything, but you can always be surprised,” chief investigator Manfred Schmandra told the paper.’


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Teens await arrest after Comcast attack

‘ Two teenagers who say they hijacked Comcast’s Web portal on Thursday also say they expect to be arrested for their actions.

“I wish I was a minor right now because this is going to be really bad,” 19-year-old “Defiant” told Wired’s Kevin Poulsen, who managed to get a one-hour phone interview with Defiant and his 18-year-old cohort “EBK.”

“I slept in my clothes, because the last time they came, I was in my underwear with my dong hanging out and shit,” Defiant said of a past raid.

On Thursday, Comcast’s portal was defaced, leaving some e-mail subscribers without service. On the site, the hackers referenced their group: “KRYOGENICS Defiant and EBK RoXed Comcast.”‘


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Monday, June 2, 2008

 

CATBUS

‘I HAVE A 1995 MO’ VAN THAT GOT TRANSFORMED INTO THIS CATBUS. I BROUGHT IT TO A SHOPS AND I WAS LIKE HEY, CAN YOU TURN THIS INTO A CATBUS? SO THEY DID. THEN THAT DAY I DROVE IT HOME. THE CAT BUS ONLY HAS 50K, WHICH ARE ALL HIGHWAY MILES AS I DROVE IT TO WORK 2 DAYS A WEEK AND THAT WAS IT. IT’S IN REALLY GOOD SHAPE AND ALL THE FUR IS STILL ALL THERE. THE STEERING WHEEL HAS A CAT ON IT. IM ONLY ASKING 2900 FOR THE CATBUS BECAUSE ITS REALLY FURRY AND SOMETIMES PEOPLE GET SICK ON IT.’


Sunday, June 1, 2008

 

California Hacker Caught Taking $50K, Penny by Penny

‘[..] Largent fulfilled the pop-culture dream that was popularized in such movies as Office Space and Superman 3 – stealing a large sum of money, $50,000 to be exact, a few pennies at a time.

Largent used a massive fraud scheme to trick Google Checkout and online brokers like E-trade and Schwab to send him the sum, a few cents at a time. The fraud was made possible by a common practice relatively unknown to the general public. When users open up accounts with these sites, the site sends a tiny payment from a few cents to a few dollars to the user. The payment is meant to verify that the user has access to the account and that it’s active.

By opening 58,000 such accounts, Largent funneled money through the channels into a few private bank accounts. Largent raked in $8,000 from Google’s Checkout alone.’


Saturday, May 31, 2008

 

Werner Forssmann

‘Werner Forßmann, (August 29, 1904 – June 1, 1979) was a physician from Germany. He is credited with the first catheterization of a human heart. In 1929, while working in Eberswalde, he made an incision into his arm and fed a urinary catheter into the right atrium of his own heart. He then walked down a flight of stairs to the radiology department, where he had an X-ray taken showing the catheter in his heart. Although he was later fired from another hospital for this, he received his Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1956 for his pioneering feat into cardiological studies.’


Thursday, May 29, 2008

 

Office worker awarded £5,000 after boss constantly broke wind in her direction

‘A bullied office worker has been awarded £5,000 after her boss raised his right buttock from his chair and broke wind in her direction.

Humiliated mother-of-three Theresa Bailey, 43, was the only woman on a sales team where “laddish” behaviour made her life a misery, and continued despite complains to senior managers.

After she objected to sexist banter a beach ball was thrown at her head – and when she had problems working her computer was ordered to wear a badge saying “I’m simple”.

Now an employment tribunal has ruled that Mrs Bailey was sexually discriminated against while working for direct marketing firm Selectabase, in Deal, Kent, and awarded her £5,146.’


Group wants Wi-Fi banned from public buildings

‘A group in Santa Fe says the city is discriminating against them because they say that they’re allergic to the wireless Internet signal. And now they want Wi-Fi banned from public buildings.

Arthur Firstenberg says he is highly sensitive to certain types of electric fields, including wireless Internet and cell phones.

“I get chest pain and it doesn’t go away right away,” he said.

Firstenberg and dozens of other electro-sensitive people in Santa Fe claim that putting up Wi-Fi in public places is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.’


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Saturday, May 24, 2008

 

Woman strips in anger at wolf whistles

‘A woman who felt harassed when road workers whistled at her stripped naked in response, police said.

Workmen in the small northern farming town of Kerikeri, New Zealand, were repairing the main street when the young woman, an Israeli tourist, took offence at their attention.

She calmly stripped bare to use an ATM – bringing an abrupt halt to both the whistles and the road work – then put her clothes back on and walked away.

Sgt. Peter Masters said the woman told police she didn’t take kindly to the men’s wolf-whistles.

“She said she had thought ‘… I’ll show them what I’ve got,’ ” as the men whistled at her, he said. [..]

“She was taken back to the police station and spoken to and told that was inappropriate (behaviour) in New Zealand,” he added.’


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Saturday, May 17, 2008

 

Woman sat dead in front of TV for 42 years

‘The remains of a woman have been found sitting in front of her TV – 42 years after she was reported missing.

Hedviga Golik, who was born in 1924, had apparently made herself a cup of tea before sitting in her favourite armchair in front of her black and white television.

Croatian police said she was last seen by neighbours in 1966, when she would have been 42 years old.

Her neighbours thought she had moved out of her flat in the capital, Zagreb.

But she was found by police and bailiffs who had broken in to help the authorities establish who owned the flat.

A police spokesman said: “So far, we have no idea how it is possible that someone officially reported missing so long ago was not found before in the same apartment she used to live in.’