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WICKED THOUGHTS -- MIRROR




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16 November, 2014

Painters should not have car accidents



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world



British "art" gallery spends £30,000 on pyramid of 6,000 oranges:  "A pile of 6,000 oranges dubbed Soul City (Pyramid of Oranges) is tipped to be the Tate Modern's craziest art installation yet.  The taxpayer-backed London art gallery has spent £30,000 on the sculpture - which works out to be a fiver for each fruit.  Visitors to the exhibition, first created by South African-born Roelof Louw in 1967, will be encouraged to eat the display.  But this works out as quite an expensive snack, as the fruit can be sold for as little as 8p each at a market.  Charles Thompson, of traditional art group Stuckists, said the gallery 'has a history of buying dross'.  He told The Sun: 'Now it is paying way over the top for something you can get at a supermarket.'  A Tate spokesman said the money had come from rich patrons and insisted Louw was "a significant figure in the context of sculptural experiment." The work was created to raise questions about ephemerality, time and decay. Visitors are invited to take an orange and as a result the piece literally dematerialises and changes through visitor participation."




Dog jumps on the back of an ambulance to ride on the bumper after his 85-year-old owner is taken to hospital: "A part-beagle named Buddy didn't wait for an invitation to see his 85-year-old master at a Texas hospital.  The dog hitched a ride on the outside of an ambulance transporting his owner, Mason County rancher J.R. Nicholson, to Fredericksburg.  Ranch hand Brian Wright said on Friday that he summoned the ambulance on October 26 when Nicholson started feeling dizzy.  The ambulance had been driving for about 20 miles before another motorist flagged down the driver to say there was a dog on the side step.  Buddy was then put into the ambulance with the patient.  Wright drove separately to Hill Country Memorial Hospital, where medical staff told him what Buddy did and the dog was still in the ambulance. Wright retrieved the dog, then later drove his boss and Buddy home the same day after Nicholson was released.  Nicholson said he only got Buddy, who is four, about four months ago from the pound after his previous two dogs had to be put down.  'He’s now a member of the family,' Nicholson told the paper."




Grass roots art: Artist searches for a needle in a haystack:  "It's an age-old idiom, but a New York-based Italian artist wants to know the truth - what is it like to actually find a needle in a haystack? And is it even possible? Sven Sachsalber spent 48 hours sifting through a giant pile of hay dumped in at the Palais de Tokyo gallery in Paris.  In the pile of hay he searched for a needle hidden deep in its centre by the prestigious modern art gallery's president Jean de Loisy.  Sachsalber says the 'art installation' is something easy to understand for the general public. De Loisy says the installation isn't just a man taking on the ultimate hide-and-seek challenge as it explored the complex relationship between words and actions, juxtaposing metaphors for the immensely small and the incomprehensibly large and complex.  'Even though it might look stupid, I just want to test out these things,' he said.




Stunning images show the beauty of Iranian mosques:  "Mohammad Reza Domiri Ganji may have just found his true calling: capturing the little-seen breathtaking beauty of Iran's most dazzling mosques.  The 24-year-old physics student, who lives in Babol in Iran's Mazandaran province, pursues his passion for photography on the side.  Having no formal training whatsoever, Ganji has honed his eye by reading articles and watching Internet tutorial videos, and has a particular affinity for photographing historical architecture.  Experimenting with panorama, monument, and landscape photography, Ganji embarked on a project to photograph Muslim places of worship around Iran from unexpected viewpoints over five years ago.  From the kaleidoscope-like patterns of the famous Nas?r al-Mulk Mosque (also known as the Pink Mosque) in Shiraz to documenting the intricate ceiling detailing of the Seyyed Mosque in Isfahan, Ganji has travelled to the far reaches of Iran to show foreigners a side of the country rarely seen."




Rivers of fire: "Cascading down the hillside burning everything in its path, this is the moment a 'lavafall' breaks over a grassy bank in Hawaii.  Video footage shows three streams of molten rock oozing through the metal fence of a waste recycling facility in Pahoa earlier this week and slowly trickling down - some tributaries blending into one.  As the fiery liquid moves over vegetation, smoke plumes erupt and flames flicker with temperatures hitting close to 2,000-degrees Fahrenheit.  Lava began erupting from Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano on June 27. The flow has traveled more than 13 miles since then and is currently oozing through the rural town of Pahoa, which has around 1,000 residents, destroying cemeteries and homes in its path.  Kilauea has been erupting continuously for more than 31 years. Earlier flows traveled south, smothering the Royal Garden and Kalapana subdivisions in the 1980s and 1990s. They destroyed more than 180 homes between 1983 and 1990, but until this week, none had been lost since 2012."


And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.






15 November, 2014

A classic



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Aunt, 91, wakes up in a body bag after being declared dead:  "A 91-year-old woman has woken up in a body bag after being declared dead and kept in a morgue's cold storage room for 11 hours.  Janina Kolkiewicz was declared dead after an examination by the family doctor in the eastern Polish town of Ostrow Lubelski, and sent to a mortuary while her family planned her funeral.  But when the funeral home's staff opened the refrigerator to check on her body, they were shocked to find it moving inside the body bag. They zipped it open to find Ms Kolkiewicz awake, complaining of feeling cold.  She has now returned to her family where she ate two pancakes and a bowl of hot soup to warm up, reported Polish newspaper Dziennik Wschodni.  Her ordeal began when her niece, Bogumila Kolkiewicz, called the family doctor, Dr Wieslawa Czyz, after noticing she was not breathing.  Upon finding no pulse, Dr Czyz declared her dead and wrote out her death certificate. My aunt has no inkling of what happened since she has late-stage dementia,' Bogumila told local media."




German politicians announce plans to introduce 50/50 quotas for traffic lights so there are as many flashing green men as there are women:  "Politicians in Dortmund want to introduce female traffic light icons. They claim they should be introduced in the name of gender equality. Officials argued that they are also safer as they would emit more light. They’ve argued that some of the lights should be partially modified in the name of equality.   ‘One advantage of the “traffic light woman” would be the enlargement of the illuminated area," the Green and Social Democrats said in a statement.  Other German cities such as Bremen, Cologne, Dresden, Kassel, Magdeburg and Zwickau already have female lights, but their introduction was barred in Berlin, with officials concerned that the design – of a girl with pigtails – was too clichéd"




Man who lost his dead father's WW1 medal while playing on the beach as a child in 1938 is reunited with it 76 years later:  "Ben Eggleston was a five-year-old boy when he lost the 1914 Star, known as the Mons Star, while on a day trip to Brighton in August 1938.  He carried the medal in memory of his father who had died that year from lung cancer - a condition he developed after being gassed in the trenches. He spent decades visiting archives, antique fairs and private collections trying to find the medal, which was awarded for bravery in the Battle of the Somme. This month, Mr Eggleston, now 82, spotted the medal, inscribed with his father's name, Sergeant Stephen Eggleston, on an eBay auction. It is now at his home in Norfolk. The former engineer said it was 'incredibly poignant' that he should find it in the centenary of the start of the war.  What happened to the medal, known as the Mons Star, after 1939 remains a mystery, though it was in the possession of its most recent owner for more than 30 years.




A peek inside a Viking piggybank:  "The mystery surrounding the contents of a Viking pot has been solved after researchers carried out a CT scan on the ancient artefact.  Archaeologists had been unable to open the pot to see what was inside, but its weight suggested it was full of treasure.  After undergoing a series of scans, the 1,200-year-old pot was found to contain up to at least five silver brooches and an ornate bead.  It was among more than 100 objects discovered by metal detectorist Derek McLennan, 47 in Dumfries in September. Other items include solid gold jewellery, arm bands and silver ingots.  The find was deemed one of the most significant Viking hoards ever discovered in the UK, but the pot's contents were a mystery.  Experts were concerned about damaging the 9th century Carolingian pot when attempting to see what was inside.  But now, the CT scanner at Borders General Hospital, Scotland, has revealed the ornate box contains around 20 silver, gold and ivory items."





Did this snake commit SUICIDE? Brown tree snake was found dead still biting its neck:  "Did this snake kill itself using its own venom?  It certainly looked that way when Matt Hagan from Cairns Snake Catchers found the dead snake on Saturday still plunging its fangs into its own neck. He was called to a home at Earville, just south-west of Cairns, after a woman found the 1.5 metre Brown Tree snake on her doorstep.  'I could immediately see something wasn't quite right with the snake. When I picked it up I noticed it was still biting down firmly on its neck. 'I thought what on earth - it looked like it had bitten its own neck and died.' Matt took the snake to a vet to determine the cause of death, but only found swelling near puncture wounds"



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.






14 November, 2014

An advertisement from 1964



A test for clean minds

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Scientists search for the secret to long life - but find NOTHING:  "In the hunt for a so-called 'longevity gene' - a genetic difference that could explain why some people live for more than a century, while others die much younger - scientists have come up short.  Researchers sequenced the genes of 17 people aged over 110, known as supercentenarians, to see whether they possess special or unique genetic traits - but found nothing.  Just 75 people in the world are members of the exclusive supercentenarian club, and nearly all of them are women. The research, published in the Plos One journal, failed to identify a common genetic characteristic in the old people, strengthening a commonly held belief that living to extreme old age may involve lots of factors, including luck. The research involved 16 women and one man, all of whom lived in the United States. Fifteen of them were white, one black and one Hispanic and all of them have now died.  The 17 supercentenarians involved in the study did not report particularly virtuous healthy eating or exercise habits that explain their longevity - and around half of them were smokers




New high speed train coming to Britain (Americans eat your heart out!:  "A new 200mph state-of-the-art train has been unveiled in London by Channel Tunnel high-speed train company Eurostar.  Built by German firm Siemens and capable of carrying 900 passengers, the e320 train will go into service at the end of 2015.  In a £550 million deal, Eurostar originally ordered 10 of the e320s - so called as they can travel at 320kph (200mph) - but at the launch at St Pancras station the company announced it was ordering a further seven new trains.  May 2015 will see the start of a new year-round direct Eurostar service to Provence, stopping at Lyon, Avignon and Marseille, followed at the end of 2016 by the launch of a direct route to Amsterdam with stops in Antwerp, Rotterdam and Amsterdam's Schiphol airport along the way.  The external livery and interiors of the new train have been created by Italian design house Pininfarina.  The e320s will be equipped with free wifi throughout and customers will enjoy more space per seat, with each equipped with power points and a USB socket. "The combination of bold design, chic interiors and wifi connectivity will raise the bar, providing an unprecedented level of style and comfort for our customers."




Company puts Hillary nutcracker on the market:  "A retailer is looking to cash in on the 2016 election by selling a Hillary nutcracker.  The novelty item was first seen in 2008 and is now set for a comeback with the former First Lady expected to make a run for the White House in 2016.  The first batch has already sold out but Urban Outfitters said that they expected to have the item back on the market “upon the announcement of her next presidential campaign.”  The item – a nutcracker with “stainless steel thighs” – that “cracks the toughest nut” will cost $60.  It has been made  by the a company which also produced the Bill Clinton corkscrew.   The gimmick has not received universal approval, it has been dismissed as “sexist” by Cosmopolitan."



Women have stronger orgasms if their partner is funny - and rich:  "Those are the findings from a recent study that looked at whether orgasm intensity, frequency and sexual satisfaction are determined by a woman's choice of partner.  The study discovered that frequency was related to intensity, which in turn was stronger when the partner was funny, self-confident and their family were high earners.  The study was carried out by psychologist George Gallup and his colleagues at the University at Albany.  They surveyed heterosexual female college students in relationships about how often they experienced orgasm during sex.  Orgasm intensity was related to how attracted the women were to their partners, how many times they had sex per week, and ratings of sexual satisfaction.  Those with partners who their friends rated as more attractive also tended to have more intense orgasms.   Sexual satisfaction was also related to how physically attracted women were to their partner, as well as the breadth of his shoulders."




Steam-powered MOTORBIKE!: "Three amateur inventors have come up with a steam-powered bike that uses sustainable wood chips for fuel.  The Cornish trio are testing their bike on local moorland and hope their biogas engine could one day be used to power homes and other machines in a more eco-friendly way than diesel.  It works by woodchips being burnt inside the contraption’s biomass engine, which gives off gas that is condensed into steam.  Rather than pedalling, the rider uses their feet to pump air into the ‘expansion motor’ to generate one horsepower – making the machine three times more powerful than the average cyclist.  Inventor craftsman Graham Waldren designed and built the bike with his friends Richard Blackborow, a gallery curator, and Mat Thompson, who works in healthcare.



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.








13 November, 2014

Cat love?



Check the tails

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

The drug that could give elderly people the immune system of a 20-year-old and dramatically reduce deaths from flu: "A treatment which significantly boosts older people’s ability to fight off flu and other viruses has been developed by British scientists. Once injected with the new chemical, the elderly and vulnerable will have a much for effective immune system, Oxford University researchers claim.  The compound, called spermidine, has been shown to have a significant impact in tests on mice - and scientists have already patented it as a potential treatment for humans. The research, published yesterday in the journal eLife, showed that the compound restores the immune system’s inbuilt ‘memory’ enabling it to mount a more powerful protective response following vaccination.  Tests have shown the chemical can boost the response of mice to the flu virus and cytomegalovirus – or CMV – a common infection which can cause sight problems and pneumonia.  The scientists think it might be used to tackle a wider variety of viruses in future."




Historic 126-year-old Chicago mansion weighing 1,000 tons moved 600-feet:  "It has stood on Chicago's historic South Prairie Avenue since 1888, but on Tuesday the Harriet Rees Mansion began a two-day trek just one block north, or 600 feet away.  Making way for a new university basketball arena, the mansion was moved atop a huge array of automated dollies, crawling and inching at one-half-foot per second on 250 wheels. Weighing more than 1,000 tons, the three-story brick house is 95-feet long, 25-feet wide and 72-feet wide and one of the last residential remnants of the Gilded Age in the Windy City.  The house was encased in a steel frame and raised onto 32 massive motorized dollies for the 600-foot move.  The home was built for the widow of a real estate innovator, and stood near homes built by George Pullman and Marshall Field.


Could the cure for cancer be HIV?:  "A man who was diagnosed with an extremely aggressive form of cancer two years ago is now amazingly in remission thanks to a revolutionary treatment that involved receiving an infusion of the virus that causes AIDS.  Marshall Jensen of Utah, was one of 30 leukemia patients to undergo a trial treatment at Penn Medicine recently, in which white blood cells are implanted with a harmless form of HIV programmed to target and kill cancer.  The 30-year-old married father of one has so far responded well to the treatment and is now cancer-free for the first time in years.  The 30-year-old Utah man was one of 30 patients in an experimental trial, who received doses of the deactivated HIV virus, which act as cancer killing fighters in the body. The connection between leukemia and HIV was first discovered in 2006, when an HIV-positive man named Timothy Wood was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. After receiving a bone marrow transplant from a donor with a rare genetic mutation, Wood's cancer went into remission and the HIV disappeared from his system making him the first man to ever be fully cured of the virus.




Big dog:  Meet the Russian Caucasian. Yes! This is a dog and not a bear. I certainly would not want to meet one in a dark alley! The Caucasian dog is one of the oldest mastiff-type breeds, originating from the Caucasus Mountains between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea. It was used for centuries to guard flocks, kill wolves, hunt bears and protect properties against trespassers and thieves. Its type differs a little from region to region.




Florida 'shoplifter' caught on CCTV stuffing chainsaw down his shorts: "A very ambitious shoplifter was caught attempting to steal a chainsaw by stuffing it down his shorts.  Anthony Ballard was captured on CCTV at a store in Port St. Lucie, Florida, grabbing the $600 (£380) tool and nonchalantly walking out with it under his T-shirt.  The 28-year-old escaped on his bicycle while being chased by employees from the store, who called the police.  He ditched the chainsaw in a bush and was later spotted searching some woodland near the store and was arrested, TCPalm’s Off The Beat blog reports."


And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.






12 November, 2014

Ever had a bad day?



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Warning signs for dementia... found in the way you walk:  "Doctors may be able to diagnose early-stage dementia simply by analysing the way patients walk. The news opens up the possibility of preventative treatment years before the condition develops fully.  A new trial at Essex University aims to identify sufferers using specialised movement tracking computer programmes.  Researchers have recruited 1,000 people, all over the age of 55, who will be monitored and tested over a ten-year period.  The intention is to discover if there are patterns in the type of physical changes that occur in those who go on to develop dementia or other neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s. Although previous studies have shown that Alzheimer’s patients slow down their walking speed and may also hold themselves differently as they walk – and that the differences become more pronounced as they deteriorate – this will be the most detailed look at the phenomenon."




Female Chinese fighter pilots: "The first female pilots to join the Chinese aerobatic team have taken to the skies to parade their spectacular talents at the 10th International Aviation and Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai.  The event, which runs from November 11 to 16, features the display of real-size products, technological exchanges and flying displays from 700 exhibitors and over 130 planes, including the largest ever military transport jet.  Yu Xu, Tao Jiali, Sheng Yifei and He Xiaoli are the first women to become a member of the Bayi Aerobatic Team of the air force of the Chinese People's Liberation Army, who performed on Tuesday in south China.  The event, which runs until Sunday, will also see performances by the Russian 'Knights' aerobatic team, as well as the United Arab Emirates air force team. As part of the performance, two of the women marched towards the J-10 Fighter planes in unison with their five male counterparts, clad in matching green jumpsuits and aviation glasses. The ensemble matches those worn by the cast of the box-office smash hit Top Gun, from 1986, which features Tom Cruise and Meg Ryan.




Amazing Korean plastic surgeons:  "Chinese women who are entering South Korea seeking skilled plastic surgeons are undergoing such transformative procedures that they are struggling to get past airport security on their way home.  The extensive surgeries, which can include reducing excess skin in the upper eyelid to make the eyes appear bigger and more 'Western', are transforming some Chinese women's entire faces, rendering them almost unrecognizable.  To combat the issue, some hospitals have resorted to handing out 'plastic surgery certificates' - which include the patient's passport number, the name of the hospital they were treated at and the length of their visit to South Korea - to enable the women to re-enter China. China Daily reported that some women have been stopped at passport control because they were noted to have bigger eyes, higher noses and slimmer chins than in the photographs shown in their passports.




Truckie saves red-bellied black snake from certain death after finding the serpent stuck in a drink can:  "A THIRSTY snake in need of a pick me up got its head stuck in an energy drink can.  A passing truck driver found the red belly black snake in a spot of bother on the side of the M7 in Horsley Park last Friday. “The snake has probably gone into the can because it was a little bit dehydrated then got itself stuck,” a WIRES spokeswoman said.  “The driver decided he wasn’t going to leave it there so he put it in a bag and took it with him. “Our rescuer picked it up from him and cut it out of the can and released it.  “It’s healthy and didn’t have any cuts around its head which is really lucky. It’s really important for people to remember when they’re leaving rubbish around that this can happen.”  “Snakes are inquisitive and this snake was probably looking for a safe place to hide on a busy road,” the spokeswoman said.  “Unfortunately, the place it chose wasn’t wide enough or deep enough for it and it got trapped in the can.”


Popular weight loss diets ineffective:  "Popular diets such as Atkins or Weight Watchers can help people lose weight quickly but in the long term may be no more effective than living healthily, a study claims.  People on fad diets often lose weight in the short term, but they regain their lost pounds within two years and may be just as well off using traditional weight loss techniques, the researchers say. The researchers analysed clinical trials on four popular weight-loss diet plans: the low-carbohydrate Atkins diet; the South Beach diet, which distinguishes 'good' and 'bad' carbs and fats; the Weight Watchers calorie-counting diet; and the Zone diet, which stipulates a 3:4 ratio of protein to carbohydrates.  They compared them with what they dubbed 'usual care', which refers to traditional methods to promote weight loss such as low-fat diets, behavioural weight loss intervention, nutritional counselling, or self-help materials. Trials involving head-to-head comparisons between Atkins, Weight Watchers, Zone and usual care suggest that all four result in a modest weight loss at one year, as did those in the control group who received the usual care.



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.







11 November, 2014

Making history



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

?Scientists jailed because they did not predict deadly earthquake in Italy -- now cleared:  "Six scientists who were each sentenced to six years in prison because they failed to predict a deadly earthquake in Italy which left 309 people dead have been cleared.  The group, which includes some of the country's most respected seismologists, was jailed for manslaughter after underestimating the risks that an earthquake posed to the town of L'Aquila.   The scientists were members of a Major Risks committee that met in the town after a series of small tremors but concluded that there was little risk.  Judges in the first trial in 2012 said the committee members gave a 'misleadingly reassuring statement' that prompted at least 29 people who wanted to leave the town to stay instead. They were jailed in October that year.  There was widespread outrage at the verdict, particularly from those within the scientific community. The journal Nature called it 'perverse' and the sentencing 'ludicrous' given the recognised difficulty of predicting earthquakes. The prosecutors could still appeal the innocent verdict to Italy's highest court"




Holidaymakers baffled as tips on board luxury China cruise are debited to 'Shanghai Carpet Factory' on bank statements:  "Guests on board luxury Viking River Cruises in China are being left confused when they receive the bill for their trip.  Holidaymakers are discovering that any tips given to staff during are debited as payments to the 'Shanghai Carpet Factory' on bank statements - separate to their main bill. A booklet given to passengers aboard the Yangtze River cruise stipulates that tips charged will appear on their statement as the carpet company, according to The Telegraph.  A spokesman for the Swiss-based Viking Cruises told MailOnline Travel: 'In accordance with local law, Viking Cruises uses a Chinese partner company to complete the transaction.  'We are open and transparent about this and make our guests aware of this to avoid any confusion when their statement arrives.'  Viking have two luxurious cruises of China on its itinerary."




Friendly ground squirrel:  "It looks like a real-life game of Whack-a-Mole.  But instead of trying to hit the inquisitive squirrel on the head with an inflatable mallet, Stacey Wallace, 28, took a 'selfie' with the animal.  The rodent popped out of its hole in search of nuts at Lightning Lake in British Columbia's Manning Park.  And to ensure she captured the perfect picture, Ms Wallace from Vancouver lay out on the ground metres away from the squirrel and slowly crawled towards him.  The ground squirrel stayed in position long enough for her to take a few pictures and later climbed into her arms for a cuddle.  Ground squirrels generally burrow into the soil and live in holes rather than trees. The term is most often used to describe medium-sized ground squirrels, as the larger ones are more commonly known as marmots or prairie dogs.  Smaller and less bushy-tailed ground squirrels tend to be known as chipmunks. They are variable in size, but most are remarkably able to rise up on their hind legs and stand comfortably for prolonged periods.  They hibernate seven or eight months out of the year"


Killed by his wedding ring: "A man was killed by his own wedding ring after in touched a live wire on a dishwasher he had just finished installing for relatives, police say.  Jason Ferguson, 33, died while trying to set up the machine for his brother-in-law and sister-in-law at their home in South Daytona, Florida.  He had turned off power in the room for most of the process, but left it on while he reached behind the unit to investigate a 'strange noise' it was making.  Albert Washington, his brother-in-law told officers he thought Ferguson was investigating an exposed copper wire.  A police investigation found that his ring had touched an 'unknown element' in the machine while he was leaning against its metal door.  Ferguson, who lives in nearby Port Orange, was taken to the Halifax Medical Center in Daytona Beach, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.




The tragedy of people infested with 'jigger' fleas:  "This is the painful moment a man infested with parasitic ‘jigger’ fleas is forced to have them cut out of his foot with a scalpel.  The man's foot is massively swollen and disfigured, having been plagued with jiggers for years, leaving him unable to walk. The skin on his foot is flaky and pitted from previous infestations. Jigger, or chigoe fleas, common in Sub-Saharan Africa, burrow into human flesh and lay pea-sized egg sacs. The resulting wounds can lead to infections like gangrene and hepatitis.  They cause swelling, itching and infection which can lead to amputation and even death in the worst cases.  Cutting the fleas out of the foot and soaking it in alcohol or another disinfectant is the only way to treat the disease once an infestation has occurred.  Cutting out the jiggers is a painful process, and often all the jiggers cannot be removed in one sitting. In Kenya, an estimated 1.4 million people (translating to four per cent of the total population) suffer from jigger infestation."  While in small numbers jiggers are not deadly, the secondary infections such as gangrene and tetanus can be fatal."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.





10 November, 2014

Bouncing baby inspires jumping dog



[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YD9SEtaVKgA&w=420&h=315]
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Dakota the dog appears to be jumping on the shadow of baby Alexis

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Men who have a boring but conscientious wife are better at work, get more promotions and are happier in their jobs:  "Men who marry a dependable woman earn more in their career than those have a passionate but unstable other half, research has found.  Those who choose a conscientious spouse don’t have to worry about running the home and can focus on their office life.  They also perform better at work, get more promotions, and are happier at their jobs.  The result also applies if the sexes are reversed - women who choose reliable men see improvements in their work life.  The team from Washington University in St Louis, Missouri analysed data gathered from an an annual Australian survey about economic and social information.  The data covered 4,544 married individuals from 2005 to 2009 covering things like job status.  It also looked at a number of personality traits such as extroversion, agreeableness, neuroticism, conscientiousness, and openness.  Employees with extremely conscientious spouses were 50 per cent more likely to get promoted than those whose partners were unreliable."




One of Britain's oldest cinemas forced to replace its seats for the first time in 100 years - because expanding British bottoms no longer fit them: "One of the country’s oldest cinemas has been forced to replace all its seats for the first time almost 100 years - because British bottoms keep getting bigger.  Malvern Cinema in Worcestershire has removed all of its 17in-wide seats to as customers can no longer squeeze into the older model.  The historic cinema, which has welcomed Elgar,George Bernard Shaw and CS Lewis in the past, has been forced to reduce its 380 capacity by 40 because of the change. 'It’s a fact that our hips are getting slightly wider so we have had to act to making it a more comfortable experience for cinema-goers,' Nic Lloyd, chief executive of Malvern Theatres, said.  'We haven’t had anyone get stuck but we know it can happen and we’re aware of the changes that have been made to things like aeroplane seats.  'We did quite a bit of research and looked at what other cinemas had done and these new ones are the standard size in cinemas now."




Koala 'arrested' by Australian cops: "A koala causing havoc on a Sydney road has been 'arrested' and placed in a paddy wagon by police.  Officers from the New South Wales Police Dog Unit posted the adorable photos of the tiny criminal on their Facebook page.  The koala was spotted running in and out of traffic in Campbelltown, in south-west Sydney, at about 2am on Sunday morning by Senior Constable Barry.  Inspector Adam Johnson, commander of the NSW Dog Unit, said one of his officers was out patrolling with his two dogs when he spotted the koala on the road.  'If he hadn't have jumped out and grabbed it the koala probably would have been run over,' Mr Johnson said.  'He called for one of the local units to come down and they put the koala in the back cage just while they contacted the RSPCA to check what to do.




Bungling British guards forced to spend £500,000 changing ALL the locks at prison after they lost the keys: "Security company G4S were forced to spend almost half a million pounds changing all of the locks at a prison they were contracted to run - after blundering guards lost the keys.  The firm has to replace every lock and key at HMP Birmingham, known as Winson Green jail, when the set of keys vanished in October 2011 - costing £499,000. The embarrassing blunder came just days after G4S took over the management of the prison - with 1,400 bring confined to their cells while the premises was searched.  A source told the Sunday People that the jail has been in a state of chaos ever since. He said: 'There are staff shortages and inmates have been pushing their luck.'  West Midlands Police arrested a man in his 30s over the lost keys but no charges were pursued.  The gaffe is just one in a series of embarrassments for the company - who had to pay out £70million after failing to provide enough guards for the London Olympics.  Figures from Prisons minister Andrew Selous show that keys have been lost 237 times at jails since 2010, costing taxpayers £493,161."




Old lady loses 56lb by playing her ukulele:  "A pensioner has been quite literally strumming the pounds away thanks to her unique method of dieting.  Dorothy Rogan, from Darlington, has helped herself lose 4st by picking up her ukulele to stave off temptation by playing 'Oh My Darling Clementine'. 'I must have played that song over a million times,' said Mrs Rogan.  'It is the only one I know and I just play it over and over again when I am bored. I don't ever crave food but when I am bored, I just seemed to eat. Playing the ukulele has really defeated the boredom but it has driven my husband to despair.  'I even continue playing it when it out of tune and it sounds absolutely dreadful. John will just come in and look at me and shake his head. We all call him 'Poor John' now'  Mrs Rogan, who decided to lose weight after undergoing a quadruple heart bypass last year, has managed to drop from 18st 7lb to under 14st [190 lb] and intends to keep losing the pounds.



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.








9 November, 2014

A nurse's revenge

A policeman was rushed to the hospital with an inflamed appendix.  The doctors operated and advised him that all was well.

However, the patrolman kept feeling something pulling at the hairs in his crotch.

Worried that it might be a second surgery and the doctors hadn't told him about it,
he finally got enough energy to pull his hospital gown up enough so he could look
at what was making him so uncomfortable.

Taped firmly across his pubic hair and private parts were three wide strips of
adhesive tape, the kind that doesn't come off easily --- if at all.

Written on the tape in large black letters was the sentence,  "Get well soon, from the nurse in the Ford Explorer you pulled over last week."

Kind of brings tears to your eyes doesn't it?

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Porsche smashes into the back of a truck and gets dragged along for SIX MILES by truck driver:  "A driver got wedged into the back of a lorry and dragged for more than six miles as the truck driver thought honking motorists were telling him to speed up.  The run-in between an articulated truck and the car - thought to be a £100,000 Porsche Cayenne - was caught on film on a busy highway in China's Jiangxi Province.  Car driver Zhen Yin, 32, was reportedly a drug user who had fallen unconscious - and when police investigated they were said to have found his boot 'full of cocaine'.  Oblivious to what was happening, lorry driver Xiong Feng, 45, carried on for six and a half miles before being flagged down by another trucker.  'The first I became aware of anything was when I heard some loud honking beside me,' he said. 'He had his window down and was shouting something but I couldn't hear him, and then he started pointing at the back of my truck.  'But I thought he was telling me to speed up, so I did.'  He added: 'Eventually I pulled over and it was only then that I saw the car stuck on the back.'




Heathrow Airport introduces a 'scent globe' so passengers can sniff their way around the world:  "Nothing evokes a sense of place like the heady waft of a familiar smell. And passengers travelling from Heathrow's Terminal 2 can now be transported to across the world in a single sniff. To celebrate the completion of its newly reinvigorated terminal, the airport has installed a 'scent globe' which shoots out the smell of its most fragrant destinations, intending to 'take passengers on a sensory journey before even setting foot on their flights'.  Perched in the departure lounge, the orb offers curious globetrotters whiffs of Thailand, South Africa, Japan, China and Brazil. The selection were chosen for their popularity with Heathrow air passengers.  To conjure up the essence of the five nations, Heathrow worked with Design in Scent, to produce tailor-made scents from ingredients associated with the designated country.  South Africa's smell captures the adventure of safari with notes of tribal incense, wild grass and musky animalics through the scent of Hyraceum (a rock like substance made from the excrement of the Cape hyrax).  While Brazil's scent oozes rich rainforest fauna with a palette of coffee, tobacco and jasmine."




Another really dumb crook:  "A prolific jewellery thief who snatched nearly a quarter of a million pounds worth of valuables from London shops was caught after leaving behind his mobile phone with a selfie as a screensaver at the scene of a crime.  Mechanic Germain Ibrahim Fofana, 27, who blew the money gambling in casinos, received five-and-a-half years imprisonment yesterday for a total of forty-five offences.  Posing as a customer he entered the shop with a female accomplice, who had a young child in a buggy, at 1.45pm, claiming to be looking for an engagement ring.   He returned alone thirty minutes later and asked to see the two original engagement rings he viewed and a wedding ring to compare styles, running out of the shop when the assistant handed them over. When police announced the manhunt Detective Sergeant Damion Cumming said: 'In his hurry to get out of the shop, the suspect left his mobile phone on the table alongside his bag.  'While police were on the scene the phone lit up, having received a text message, and a picture of the suspect was saved as the background."
 



Man discovers a 10-FOOT nest containing 350,000 wasps in a camper-van:  "A huge wasps nest measuring about 10 feet long has been found in a camper, in South Carolina.  Robert McDougal of Hurry Up Towing in the sleepy town of Moncks Corner, had no idea there was a nest in the fold-down camper in his storage yard until he lifted it with a forklift.  Incredibly he wasn't stung as he sat perfectly still for 20 minutes and waited for pest control to arrive.  The nest is believed to have been one of the largest ever cleared in South Carolina.   McCool managed to keep his cool as he removed 37 queens, by hand.  He refused to use pesticides despite the advice of a number of colleagues in the bee extraction business to simply burn the thing out.  'Bee vacuum and grabbing bags,' he said, literally tearing loose pieces of the comb and stuffing them into trash bags. 'Quite an adrenalin rush.'  He was stung a half-dozen times, but in a two-decade career extracting hives and nests, he figures he's been stung more than 6,000 times.  Yellow jacket nests are occasionally very large.




Old cars put to the test:  "Adventurous drivers took their vintage cars up one of the steepest roads in Britain - in scenes reminiscent of the cartoon, Wacky Races.  More than a hundred pre-war cars made their way up the winding 2,100-ft quarry road at Honister Slate Mine in the Lake District, Cumbria. The towering 648m Fleetwith pike in Cumbria is a gear crunching one in three gradient on a gravel track with tortuous hair pin bends known as the Drumhouse section.   Amid dismal conditions, many of the motorists looked the part, wearing goggles and scarves while some sheltered under umbrellas as they braved the elements in their open-top cars. From Bentley to Rolls Royce, Aston Martin to Bugatti, the classic cars trundled across rocky passes against a backdrop of spectacular scenery in the Lake District.  Every year the cars converge at the foot of Honister Pass as members of the Vintage Sports Car Club prepare for the ascent."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.









8 November, 2014

Insane Golf



(www.youtube.com/embed/5QExOvKtTFQ)

Wait for it

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Brutish British private bureaucracy:  "Keith Stoner returned to his Sussex apartment  to find bailiffs had forced entry, – because the previous tenant owed Scottish Power £1,000.  The bailiffs, sent on behalf of Scottish Power, had broken the letterbox, pulled the washing machine out of its place in order to gain access to the meter, and left muddy footprints all over the floor. "It looked as though I had been burgled," Mr Stoner said.  The bailifs were sent to change the meters in the flat to "pay-as-you-go" in order to recoup some of the £1,000 owed to them by the previous tenant.  "The bailiffs walked over letters addressed to me when they entered so it doesn't take Poirot to realise the occupant had changed."  On top of the intrustion, when Mr Stoner called Scottish Power to complain, he said the person on the line "seemed not to care" and he was told his complaint could take up to 10 days to acknowledge."




Horse brought to hospital to say goodbye to its dying owner: "A dying grandmother was granted a final wish of seeing her favourite horse one last time - after the animal was brought to visit her in her hospital bed.  Sheila Marsh, a 77-year-old grandmother-of-four, passed away from cancer just hours after the horse, named Bronwen, was brought to see her at Wigan Royal Infirmary.  Mrs Marsh, who had raised the horse over 25 years since it was a foal, was wheeled outside the hospital for the meeting.  Their last encounter was captured in a moving photograph that shows the horse nuzzling up against her. "Sheila gently called to Bronwen and the horse bent down tenderly and kissed her on the cheek as they said their last goodbyes."  Mrs Marsh, who lived in Bickershaw, Wigan, had a life-long affiliation with horses and used to work at Haydock Park Racecourse.  Her daughter Tina, 33, said: "She loved her horses and she loved and adored all animals. She had six horses, three dogs, three cats and other animals.  "Her condition did not get any better and the hospital allowed us to bring Bronwen in."


Bungling British cops use 'hot chilli' riot spray on four-year-olds:  "Children as young as four were accidentally sprayed with hot chilli riot spray by police during a school visit.  Officers from Gwent Police visited Gilfach Fargoed primary school, in Bargoed, Caerphilly county, and gave a lesson on equipment used by the force on Wednesday.  But instead of demonstrating a mock PAVA spray, which replaced CS spray, officers discharged a real canister causing panic among the infants. The spray, used on eight pupils aged four and five, causes the eyes to close and is extremely painful.  None of the children needed hospital treatment, said the force, which has apologised for the error.  PAVA (pelargonic acid vanillylamide) replaced CS spray because it was said to be safer and more effective when restraining suspects.  It is claimed it is less likely to contaminate officers or bystanders."




Britain can afford a great army of bureaucrats but can't afford to fix millions of potholes in its roads:  "Olympic cyclist Dani King is in hospital after puncturing a lung in a crash caused by a pothole.  The 23-year-old gold medallist was riding near her home in Cardiff.  One of her team went down after hitting the water-filled pothole, bringing down a number of others including Miss King, who won team pursuit gold at the London Olympics in 2012.  She suffered a collapsed lung and five broken ribs.  Her agent Steve Fry said she was in a ‘fair bit of pain’ and called on authorities to improve roads.  ‘There was a puddle across the full width of the road, it was one of those freak things that in the middle of that puddle was a hole.  It’s time local authorities started spending more money on repairing roads to ensure things like this don’t keep happening. We’d like to see £10 per head of population spent on . . . maintenance of paths and roads.’




Italian love of colour not popular in Scotland:  "A family who spent £3,000 painting their waterfront house bright yellow have blasted council bosses who told them they would have to change the colour.  Stefano Varese, 41, and his elder brother Eduardo, 43, have branded the decision by planners 'absurd' and vowed to fight the move.  Council officials say the house is 'an intrusive feature within the streetscape' and not in-keeping with the area/  Mr Varese, who has lived at the four-storey property with his parents Adriano, 79, and Edilia, 80, since 1985, said he would appeal the decision. He pointed out the house has been painted white, cream, pink, blue and turquoise in the past without any issues.  He said: 'I find it absurd and crazy that it was turned down, especially as there were 31 people in support of the house and only five objections.  'My immediate neighbours are also supportive so I'm genuinely surprised.  His elder brother added: 'We have been left shocked by this and plan to fight it."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.










7 November, 2014

Wisdom



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world



Would you believe that this piece of crap is worth $100 million?  "A rare piece of artwork painted by Vincent van Gogh weeks before his death sold for $61.8 million Tuesday and a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti took in over $100 million at a sale kicking off New York City's fall art auctions of impressionist and modern art.  The big-ticket auction at Sotheby's brought in $101 million for Giacometti's 'Chariot.' The rare 1951 bronze sculpture features an elongated goddess-like figure perched atop a wheeled chariot. The price almost broke the $104.3 million record for the Swiss artist. The 1951 piece, embellished with paint to enrich the textural quality of the bronze, has been in the same collection for over 40 years. Giacometti made six casts of the 'Chariot'during his lifetime. The one sold Tuesday is one of only two painted examples."




Thrill-seekers risk their lives by hanging off the side of a cliff with just ONE HAND:  "It's a hair raising experience that could of had fatal consequences but two thrill seekers haven't apologised for a jaw dropping stunt, that saw them hanging off a cliff, with a daunting one kilometre drop.  Two Adelaide men, who were on a trip of a lifetime to Norway with friends, were both seen performing the stunt, which was all captured on video by a mate.  The footage obtained by Nine News sees them holding on to a piece of metal embedded into a large rock in a bid to hang off the side of the cliff which has a very big drop.  It's believed the nail biting footage, which provided plenty of breath taking views, has also prompted concerns for young people on holiday who are going to the extreme just for a thrill.  'Young people sometimes do things that are perhaps not very clever looking for some sort of impact,' Dr Bill Griggs from Royal Adelaide hospital told Nine News.  'They could easily have been killed ... it's pretty scary.'




Adolf Hitler lookalike spooks Berlin locals in movie stunt:  "Berlin locals have reportedly been spooked by appearances around their city of a Hitler lookalike, who looks unnervingly convincing in full costume. The controversial stunt, which is intended to promote an upcoming movie, Look Who's Back, has lit up social media.  Little-known actor Oliver Masucci, who plays the central role in the film, has turned up in character in various locations, provoking Borat-style encounters with passers-by that have been captured on hidden cameras.  In one bizarre episode, Masucci even appeared on the balcony of a hotel as a group of demonstrators from the neo-Nazi NPD marched below. He reportedly taunted the skinheads, calling them "wimps".  Look Who's Back is a big-screen adaptation of a hugely popular novel of the same name by Timur Vermes.  The book, which has sold more than 2 million copies in Germany, is a satire that imagines what would happen if Hitler returned to live in modern-day Germany."




Baywash car wash proves a hit by employing bikini-clad women to clean vehicles: "An American car wash is employing women to soap down and rinse cars in their bikinis.  Baywash Bikini Car Wash in Winter Park, Florida is open seven days a week and offers a variety of bikini-clad cleaning services ranging from $10 for a hand wash and dry to a $60 waxing.  Owner Steve McMahon, 47, originally came up with the idea five years ago to help raise money for his daughter's school - but it has proven so popular that he now plans to open a chain of bikini-based car washes across America.  Not everybody is impressed however - the local police force has now banned its officers making repeat visits to the car wash, where they have been taking advantage of free services. Mr McMahon trains each employee in leather maintenance, how to dry windows with minimal streaking, wax coating and proper detailing methods.




Gardener 'died after brushing past poisonous plant':  "A gardener collapsed and died after apparently handling a highly-poisonous plant on the £4 million estate of a wealthy businessman, a coroner has heard.  Nathan Greenaway fell ill after brushing against the deadly flower aconitum, also known as Devil's Helmet and Monkshood, which was growing in the grounds of Millcourt House, owned by retired venture capitalist Christopher Ogilvie Thompson and his wife Katherine.  A pre-inquest hearing was told that Mr Greenaway, 33, died in hospital from multiple organ failure.  The gardener was rushed to hospital but despite frantic analysis of his blood, doctors were unable to work out what was wrong with him and he died five days later.  The coroner heard that it was only after Mr Greenaway’s father, Richard, carried out hours of tireless research in an effort to find out what happened, that the link with the aconitum plant became apparent.  North Hampshire coroner Andrew Bradley heard from histopathologist Asmat Mustajab, who concluded it was "more likely than not" that Mr Greenaway died after coming into contact with the deadly purple flowering plant."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.





6 November, 2014

After the mid-term elections



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Bloodthirsty computer games may make teenagers LESS aggressive: "Gory computer games and video nasties do not make teenagers more aggressive - and may even turn them off violence.  Films such as Clockwork Orange, games including Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto, and even rock music has been blamed for fuelling youth violence.  But a new study has found no link between being exposed to such violent media and real-world violent acts. Researchers studied the history of violent films released between 1920 and 2005 and compared this to murder rates.  They also looked at the number of teenagers playing popular 18-rated computer games on their consoles, and teenage violence rates from 1996 to 2011.  The film study used independent raters to evaluate the frequency, and how graphic, the violence was in popular movies.  These were then compared to murder rates.  The researchers found that, overall, movie violence and homicide rates were not correlated. However, during the mid-20th century, movie violence and homicide rates did appear to correlate slightly, which may have led some to believe a larger trend was at play.  But this was reversed after 1990 so that movie violence became correlated with fewer homicides.  Prior to the 1940s, movie violence was similarly related to fewer homicides, not more.




Britain's  Parliament building is crumbling:  "The Houses of Parliament are crumbling, shocking new pictures of the 160-year-old building reveal.  Roofs are leaking, paintwork is peeling and lifts are creaking to the point that MPs have become trapped, missing key votes in the Commons. A huge £1billion project to overhaul the entire site is needed to preserve the Royal palace, with officials warning that it is has burned down once before and urgent action is needed to prevent a ‘crisis’. The historic building on the banks of the River Thames is so dilapidated that major repairs are needed or irreversible damage may be done and ‘part of our nation’s most valued heritage will be lost forever’, a cross-party report has warned. Officials admit that there has been ‘significant under-investment’ since the 1940s, when the Commons was bombed by the Nazis.  Many of the 3,00 windows will not close, iron roofs have rusted and leak, toilets regularly flood.




Millions of ladybirds invade British homes: "A sudden cold snap, after the humid summer, has caused millions of ladybirds to invade homes seeking warmth. Experts had warned of an influx of a foreign species - harlequin ladybirds - which are said to pose a major threat to native 'English' ladybirds.  But some homes nationwide have been overwhelmed with ladybirds of all species seeking sanctuary from the cold.  Joan Webley currently has over 100 ladybirds in her home in Gloucester. 'They don't do me any harm. They just come in and wander around for a bit, before huddling up and going to sleep. 'They tend to stay all winter, starting to leave in February but they are all gone by March.  'The funny thing is, I hadn't seen any all summer in my garden and now they have all appeared.'  Ladybird expert Katie Murray, of the University of Stirling, said: 'The cold conditions at this time of year mean ladybirds huddle together in leaf litter or other sheltered places like houses, sheds, garages, or other outbuildings.'


Thrifty oldster denied a cellphone:  "As a business owner who has never been in debt, Kirstie Allsopp’s mother-in-law should have found buying a new mobile phone to be a simple procedure. But 85-year-old Gretchen Andersen was turned down for a contract – because she does not have a credit rating.  Mrs Andersen – who is mother to Miss Allsopp’s partner of ten years, Ben, 55 – employs three people in her antiques shop in Kensington, West London, and has had a bank account for 60 years.  But because she has never borrowed money and appears to have chosen not to pay her utility bills by direct debit, she does not have a credit history and was told by Carphone Warehouse that she could not purchase a phone and contract with O2.  Financial experts warned that her situation – which Miss Allsopp, 43, revealed on Twitter – reflects a wider problem that affects thousands of thrifty elderly people who handle their money in a similar way. ‘There is still a significant part of the elderly community who like to go to the post office and pay their bills.




Sexy judge:  "When it comes to making a good impression at a new job, posting a revealing bikini shot online for your bosses to see is probably not the best move.  Newly-appointed Moldovan judge Maria Cozma, 27, was rebuked by her peers after posting a busty shot on social media of herself wearing skimpy swimwear.  But despite offending her new collegaues she will keep her job, thanks to the fact that her grandfather Michael Poalelungi, is president of the country's Supreme Justice Court.  A spokesman for the society of judges said: 'We are supposed to be a respected and serious body, not titillation for criminals and the Twitterrati.   'Unfortunately, because of who her family is, there’s not much we can do. But I strongly urge other female judges to not follow her example.'  Women’s groups have also taken issue with Miss Cozma's photograph, posted shortly after she was appointed to the capital’s main criminal court, the Centru Court.  Not everyone in Moldova sees the picture as a bad thing, however.  Garage mechanic Vladimir Sirbu, 54, told a local TV station: 'If that’s the last thing someone sees before going down at least it will be a happy sight.'



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.




5 November, 2014

10 POINTS TO PONDER

Number 10                                                                                                                                                                            
-Life is like a roll of toilet paper.  It goes faster toward the end.

Number 9
- Death is the number 1 killer in the world.

Number 8
- Life is sexually transmitted.

Number 7
- Good health is merely the slowest possible rate at which one can die.

Number 6
- Men have two emotions: hungry and horny, and they can't tell them apart. If you see a gleam in his eyes, make him a sandwich.

Number 5
- Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day. Teach a person to use the Internet and they won't bother you for weeks, months, maybe years.

Number 4
- Health nuts are going to feel stupid someday, lying in the hospital, dying of nothing.

Number 3
- All of us could take a lesson from the weather. It pays no attention to criticism.

Number 2
- In the 60's, people took acid to make the world weird. Now the world is weird, and people take Prozac to make it normal.

Number 1
- Life is like a jar of jalapeno peppers. What you do or say today might burn your ass tomorrow.

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Grandfather who had UK's first hand transplant can now tie his own shoelaces, carry his granddaughter and now plans to drive a manual car:  "The man who became the first person in the UK to have a successful hand transplant says he now is on the way to being '75 per cent recovered'.  Mark Cahill, 53, made history when he had the operation on Boxing day 2012 at the Leeds General Infirmary.  The father-of-one, from Greetland, West Yorkshire, had lost the use of his right hand – and some from his left – when it became infected during a severe attack of gout, a condition he had suffered for 20 years. Surgery to cut the infection out had left him with a paralysed hand - and he had been forced to give up his job as a pub landlord.  As his condition deteriorated, it became virtually impossible to do anything.  The operation, painstakingly performed by a team led by plastic surgeon Professor Simon Kay, was a success - and 'transformed' Mr Cahill's life."




Is she Ukrainian or Russian?: "The propaganda war between Russia and Ukraine took a turn for the bizarre after a busty Crimean model was voted Russia's top natural beauty. Maria Zarring, who has a natural 34K bust, was born in the Crimea, the Ukrainian region now run by the ethnically Russian population.  But Ukranian commentators have accused Russia of choosing the 28-year-old only because they wanted to humiliate Ukraine, and they are insisting that her breasts are not natural.  Ukranian commentators have accused Russia of choosing the 28-year-old only because they wanted to humiliate Ukraine, and they are insisting that her breasts are not natural. But model Maria says she wants no part of the furore.  She said: 'I am not interested in politics.'  'I am proud of my boobs, I am proud of my body, I am proud of my title and I am proud of my homeland.'"




British oldster left with SPIKES for teeth for more than 10 YEARS as dentists argue over who should treat him:  "A pensioner has been left with three metal spikes sticking out of his gums for more than a decade, as dentists argue over who should treat him.  David Heys from Bradley, had an operation to install special implants in his gums to fix his dentures in place.  But the work, which was carried out in the late 1990s, is now causing the 79-year-old severe problems, leaving him unable to eat solid food. Mr Heys claims he has been dismissed at every turn in his quest to seek help, being referred from one specialist to another.  His dentist, Gencare in Huddersfield said it does not have the expertise to solve the problem.  But after waiting months for an appointment at specialist hospital, the Leeds Dental Institute, Mr Heys said he was told to go back to his normal surgery.  No sooner than he did that was he referred back to the Leeds hospital again.  He claims he has been dismissed by every part of the health service, being referred from one specialist to another. Calls to the patient advice service Healthwatch Kirklees and his MP have failed to bring any assistance."  [Isn't socialized medicine wonderful?]




The bird that sings like a HUMAN:  "The hermit thrush may well be the Beyoncé of the bird world thanks to its tuneful melodies, a study has revealed.  Scientists have discovered that the North American songbird sings in 'harmonic series', a pattern of pleasing-sounding notes commonly used in popular human music. By studying how birds sing, experts hope to learn how much of human musical heritage is shaped by biology, compared to culture.  A harmonic series stems from a base note and is followed by notes that increase in pitch, based on multiples of the original note.  Scientists found that around 70 per cent of the bird’s songs followed this pattern, Smithsonian reported. Male hermit thrushes (Catharus guttatus) sing between six and 10 types of song, which tend to be high-pitched and fast, beginning with a long whistle, the study revealed.  ‘Listening to the songs full speed, they are very attractive, but we didn’t have any inkling that we would hear the harmonic series in them,' Dr Doolittle said.  But after they slowed them down, the harmonic series patterns became clear and statisticians analysed the bird’s choices of pitch in the song."




Future of the speedboat? Electric catamaran 'flies' above water at up to 25mph without making a noise:  "A super-slick, catamaran-like craft is being touted as the 21st century answer to the speedboat.  The Quadrofoil uses C-shaped hydrofoils to lift the craft out of the water, allowing it to reach a top speed of 25mph (40kph).  The shape of the four foils creates lift, to haul the vessel above the surface of the water and travel with minimal water resistance and in turn very little noise.  Marine engineers from Slovenia, who invented the craft, described it as ‘a thrilling yet quiet and eco-friendly watercraft’. ‘Its silent motor and zero emissions enable it to ride on lakes, rivers, seas & eco-zones where most motor boats and PWC’s are not allowed. No noise, no waves, no emissions.’ The craft costs €22,500 (£17,586 or $28,144) and will be shipped in March next year. It is powered by an electric motor and will cost less than 80p ($1.3) an hour to run.



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.





4 November, 2014

A definite thinker



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Mummified remains of stroke victim who vanished from Italian hospital bed three years ago are found in a cupboard just a few metres from his room:  "The mummified remains of a stroke victim who went missing from his hospital bed three years ago have been found in a store cupboard just metres from his room.  Primo Zanoli, 65, was being treated at Baggiovara Hospital in Modena, Italy, when he disappeared on New Year's Eve in 2011 and was never seen again.  Italian media reports have said the family have never stopped looking for Mr Zanoli. Now, police believe his body has been found hidden in a small storage room in the hospital only a few metres from what had been his bed.  Police spokesman Luigi Angelo said: 'We are awaiting the result of DNA tests but the evidence seems overwhelming. 'Now we have to establish how he died and how he got into the room.'  A hospital spokesman said: 'It cannot be said precisely yet whether this is the body of the patient who went missing.'




Why did the cat sit in the circle? "If you've spent hours patiently trying to teach your puss to perform tricks then the latest online pet craze could be one for you. Cat Circles, where cats are drawn to a makeshift circle, sit down in the middle of it and then refuse to move, are being recreated all over the world by plain old moggies who seemingly can't pass by a circle without being irresistibly drawn to it.  Hundreds of web users, mainly on Reddit and Imgur, are posting pictures of their successful feats, while vets and pet psychologists remain stumped.  Web users around the world have been overjoyed to learn that their disobedient and untrainable cats can actually do 'tricks' - even if it only involves utilising an 'instinct' for sitting in one specific space.  Vets are perplexed. No study has truly explained why cats are drawn to circles.




Disabled oldster bombarded with thousands of bills, phone calls and visits from British Gas for 14 years even though he doesn't use gas:  "A disabled pensioner has hit out at British Gas after the energy giant phoned him, visited him and sent him bills for 14 years - even though he doesn't use any gas.  Stroke victim Alan Eacock, 73, says the firm repeatedly pestered him over a gas meter he does not use - and has now had removed -  leaving him suffering from stress.  British Gas have finally apologised for his treatment - but have risked making matters worse by promising to contact him yet again to say sorry.  Mr Eacock says he started receiving bills from the company soon after he moved into his flat in Kings Norton, Birmingham in 2000.  He says he has since been contacted 'thousands' of times by the firm, despite repeatedly telling them he was not using any gas.  Following numerous visits by engineers but a continued barrage of mail and calls, he disconnected his gas meter.  But even that did not stop the company and he has continued to be contacted, with his most recent letter arriving in August, demanding £30.73.  Other bills however say Mr Eacock needs to pay £0.00 to the company.  Mr Eacock, who suffered a stroke 17 years ago, says he now wants to sue the energy giant for the stress caused."




Disney's most profitable princesses? The blonde, white ones:  "The most profitable Disney princesses are the ones who are white and blonde, a new study has found.  According to a graph created by Dadaviz, the princess who has sold the most merchandise on eBay since May 2013 is Elsa, with a total of $3,397,816 - which is unsurprising, since Frozen has been such a massive hit in recent times.  However, even when Elsa is taken out of the equation it appears that the Caucasian princesses still take the lead, with Cinderella in second place followed by Snow White. Even more interestingly, Aladdin's Jasmine and Tiana from The Princess and the Frog - the two non-white princesses in the study - were found to have grossed the least amount in sales.  Preferences for certain princesses may well be due to the popularity of the movies they are in, rather than the girls' physical appearance.  Indeed, The Princess and the Frog earned much less at the box office than Beauty and the Beast, which may account for Belle's place on the graph in comparison to Tiana."




Return of the vampire DEER: "Hallowe'en may have passed for another year, but deer with vampire-like fangs are still haunting the hills of Afghanistan.  It is the first time that rare fanged Kashmir musk deer has been spotted in over 60 years.  Despite their ghoulish appearance, the endangered male creatures use their fangs during mating season to seduce females and fend off love rivals, instead of sucking blood.  One of seven similar species found in Asia, Kashmir musk deer live on the rugged forested slopes of northeast Afghanistan, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) which came across a small population when conducting a recent survey.  The last scientific sighting in Nuristan province, Afghanistan, was believed to have been made by a Danish survey team traversing the region in 1948.  The species is endangered due to habitat loss and poaching, according to the study published in the journal Oryx.  The creature produces a musk that is used in perfumes, incense and medicine. Its scent glands are coveted by wildlife traffickers and are considered more valuable by weight than gold"



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.





3 November, 2014

Wrong size



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world



A Japanese whisky 'best in world':  "Japan has given the Scotch whisky industry a ‘wake up call’ - after a single malt from the Far East was named the best in the world.  Yamazaki Single Malt Sherry Cask 2013 has been given the title by Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible - which describes the drink as a work of ‘near incredible genius’.  For the first time, the 2015 edition of the renowned publication features no Scottish distillery in its top five.  And to rub salt in Scotland’s wounds, the auld enemy has won European Whisky of the Year - the honour going to Chapter 14 Not Peated, from the English Whisky Company.  The Yamazaki Single Malt, from Japan’s oldest distillery which dates back to 1923, was given 97.5 marks out of 100 by Murray - who hailed its ‘nose of exquisite boldness’ and finish of ‘light, teasing spice’.  Murray said he had sampled hundreds of Scotch whiskies while tasting 4,700 varieties from around the world for his 2015 bible."




A closeup you never want to see in real life:  "A wildlife photographer kept his cool when an eleven-foot polar bear got up close and personal with his camera.  Bill Drumm, 29, captured the softer side of the enormous animal as it investigated his equipment.  He came across the bear, nicknamed Scar, while he was riding a Tundra buggy through Churchill in Manitoba, Canada. As he approached, quick-thinking Bill hung his camera out of the window just inches from the bear's nose.  Scar, roamed around the wagon and then stopped briefly to feast on a carcass.  During a six-week span in October and November, Manitoba has the highest concentration of polar bears in the world.  The bears gather along the coast, and wait for ice to form in the sea so they can begin hunting seals. 




Switzerland in Siberia:  "Archaeologists in Siberia have begun uncovering an extraordinary alfresco gallery of prehistoric art high in the 4,506-metre tall Altai Mountains. While the region is famed for petroglyphs (rock engravings), new finds are being made in the hidden and rarely-visited Saldyar valley, close to the fast-flowing Katun River.  Here beneath the densely-wooded slopes they are discovering remarkable rock pictures dating back 5,000 years, close to Russia's border with China and Mongolia. Further searches for this ancient treasure trove will go ahead after the snow melts next year.  Professor Andrey Borodovsky, from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography at the Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, said: 'The total number of petroglyphs in Saldyar is several thousand, both separate images and whole compositions.  Reaching the artwork here is a task in itself, with the area separated from the outside world by the high jagged peaks of the Saldyarskiy pass.  Roads in this region are almost non-existent and with no mobile phone signal, nor  modern civilisation close at hand"




The Day of the Dead: "The Day of the Dead is a Latin American tradition that coincides with All Saints Say and All Souls Day on 1 and 2 November. The festival is joyously celebrated in Mexico, with families decorating the graves of departed relatives with marigolds and candles.  Participants also paint their faces to resemble skeletons, and create elaborate headgear, usually made from feathers. They spend the night in the cemetery, eating and drinking as they keep company with their deceased loved ones. The Day of the Dead festival has its origins in a pre-Hispanic Aztec belief that the dead return to Earth one day each year to visit their loved ones.  But it's not just the Latin Americans who commemorate the deceased with religious rituals. In Haiti a man offers a bowl of food to the spirits during a Vodou  ritual dedicated to Baron Samdi and the Gede family of spirits. Indian nuns honour the dead, gathering in cemeteries to decorate graves of loved ones with candles and flowers, and offer prayer. In Bangladesh, India and the Philippines, Christians flock to the cemetery to pray on  All Souls Day."




Man taxies plane to remote bar; Cops not amused:  "A man who taxied his light plane down a main street in Western Australia's Pilbara region and parked it outside a pub is expected to be charged.  Newman Police sergeant Mark McKenzie said the plane had its propeller running, its wings removed and was being steered by foot pedals on Friday. The man parked the plane outside the Newman Hotel and was then interviewed by police.  "It was a pretty stupid thing to do," Sergeant McKenzie said.  "All he needed was one gust of wind ... because without the wings, it's not stable.  "People think it was a bit of a laugh but it was very dangerous and we're not very happy with it."  "I would assume there would be an offence under the Criminal Code that may fit the bill.  "I'm confident that he will be charged with something soon."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.




2 November, 2014

Cosy



And it's the dog that seems to be doing the worrying

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world



Gender Neutral Underwear?:  "The collection is called Play Out and the designers, Abby Sugar and Sylvie Lardeux, desired to create “lesbian-inspired” underwear. BuzzFeed declared the collection “the world’s first gender-neutral underwear collection.” The collection’s patterns are clearly intended to attract both men and women, but how can they possibly fit both sexes? After all, the primary purpose of underwear is to keep the parts that differentiate males and females safe and covered and, despite the LGBTQ movement’s protests to the contrary, those parts are different and thus require different casings. Surprise! The world’s first gender-neutral underwear collection is not that neutral.  If you were to visit Play Out’s online store, you would immediately see something curious on the main page. While almost every other online clothing store has categories for “men’s” and “women’s” clothes, you would expect the gender-neutral underwear website to have one category, or maybe none at all. However, at the top of the page is a list for “Underwear” and another one for “Men’s Underwear.”




Cannon barrel found in checked bag at Hawaiian  airport: "Transportation Security Administration agents are used to finding firearms and other weapons in checked luggage.  However, last week TSA officials acknowledge discovering a weapon that they probably will add to "items we don't see every day" category" --  an unloaded cannon barrel in a passenger's checked luggage at the Kahului Airport.  The cannon barrel was found in the checked bag of a United Airlines passenger traveling to  San Francisco on Oct. 20 at around 9 p.m.  The airline made separate arrangements to transport the item for the passenger and the passenger was cleared to fly, the TSA reported."




Tortoise misadventure:  "A tortoise was taken for an emergency visit to the vet after he got an electrical cable stuck under his shell. Mr T, a giant African spurred tortoise, was stretching his legs on owner Jill Johnstone's lawn when he became entangled in the cable from a garden strimmer. Fortunately, vets were able to free the cable from around the animal's neck and remove the plug that was wedged under his shell.  They described the incident as a 'bizarre accident'.  Mrs Johnstone, 60, has owned Mr T, whose shell now weighs 11.7kg, 'since he was as big as a 50p piece'.  She said that it was 'panic stations' when her beloved six-year-old pet got into trouble in the garden.  She said: 'My son Scott was putting the strimmer away when Mr T walked over the wire and got it wrapped around his neck and the three pin plug stuck under his shell and between it and his front leg.'




Surfer's miraculous escape from shark which bit her hand and board before her friend punched it five times in the nose: "A woman has made a miraculous escape after a 12-foot-long shark bit her hand and tried to drag her out to sea. Mckenzie Clark, 34, was surfing in North Kohala, Hawaii, on Friday morning when the shark launched out of the sea and clamped down on her left hand.  Her friend Brian Wargo turned back to see the shark lifting her up out of the water on her board as it wildly lunged at her body.  It pulled Miss Clark off her board and bit her hand, which she ripped back, tearing off the skin.  Mr Wargo grabbed the shark's dorsal fin and punched the beast five times in the nose. After the fifth strike, it turned away and disappeared under the water.  They rushed to hospital where Miss Clark received two stitches. She is now awaiting a skin graft operation to fully repair the damage.




Liner with the latest:  "With a jewel-shaped pod that lifts passengers over the ocean and robots that serve cocktails, the world’s third largest cruise ship is set to sail across the Atlantic Ocean on its inaugural voyage.  Touted as the world’s first smartship, Quantum of the Seas is the most high-tech cruise ship in the world, boasting wristbands that serve as room keys, speedy wifi, virtual balconies in windowless rooms, the first dodgem ride on water, and a skydiving simulator.  On Sunday, it will begin its voyage from Southampton, where it docked earlier this week, to a port near New York before relocating to the Caribbean for the 2014-15 season.   Passengers on the inaugural cruise will be able to partake in a number of at-sea firsts, including the skydiving simulator, dine at one of 18 restaurants, including Jamie Oliver’s Italian franchise, or retire to the largest guest rooms of any Royal Caribbean vessel.  In addition to a skydiving simulator, the 1,142ft ship boasts a surf simulator, rock climbing wall and multiple venues for live performances. Built at Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg Germany, it has nearly 3,000 guest rooms and an area known as SeaPlex, the largest indoor active space at sea, complete with a flying trapeze, basketball court and three firsts for a cruise ship – bumper cars, roller skating and a food truck.



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.






1 November, 2014

Things kids have to learn



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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Mob stone to death suspected terrorist then burn his corpse and EAT him:  "A mob stoned to death a suspected terrorist before burning his corpse and eating him in revenge for a series of attacks in Congo that have left 100 people dead.  Witnesses said the young man, who has not been identified, aroused suspicion on a bus in the north east of the country when passengers discovered he could not speak the local Swahili language and that he was carrying a machete.  Witnesses said he was then stoned to death by the crowd before his body was burned and eaten.  The incident in the town of Beni comes following a number of overnight raids in the area blamed on the Islamist group ADF-NALU.  The Ugandan rebels are thought to have massacred more than 100 people this month, using hachets and machetes to kill their victims.  Speaking from the town of Beni, Congo's President Joseph Kabila said the ADF-NALU militants would face the same fate as the rebel movement M23, which was defeated by a UN-backed government offensive last year.  ADF-NALU is an alliance of groups opposed to the Ugandan government that has operated from bases in neighboring Congo since the mid-2000s.




Mystery of Jordan's Big Circles: Ancient stone rings in the desert:  "Scattered across Jordan are 12 giant circular structures that can only be fully seen using aerial and satellite images. Known collectively as the Big Circles, the vast rings - which range from between 720ft and 1,490ft (220 metres to 455 metres) in diameter - were first spotted from the air in the 1920s, and surveys in 1930, 1953 and 2002 have since revealed more details about their size, shape and locations.  But now archaeologists from Western Australia have documented the 12 Jordanian, and more recent Syrian, circles in a bid to bring them to more people's attention and learn more about their purpose.  A total of eight big circles have been recorded in west central Jordan, between the Wadi el-Hasa and the edge of the Shara escarpment. There is also a second group, made of four Big Circles, just north of Azraq Oasis.  ‘The landscape of the Middle East is thickly strewn with circular or sub-circular stone-built structures', explained lead researcher Professor David Kennedy.  He continued that construction is simple, and typically consists of low walls of uncut boulders."


Young girl had to be 'exorcised of an evil demon' after visiting haunted 'portal to Hell' house:  "The family of a young girl have claimed she had to be exorcised of an evil demon after visiting a haunted house owned by 'Ghost Adventures' host Zak Bagans.  The unnamed youngster apparently became 'possessed' by a malevolent spirit inside the home in Gary, Indiana, once described as a 'portal to Hell'.  The possession allegedly occurred during filming of Bagans' latest documentary for which he asked former residents of the property to retrace their footsteps through the haunted building.  The mother claimed she felt a kick in the leg when nobody was in the room before her daughter, a few weeks later, began having 'violent outbursts'.  Bagans said the possession was so severe that he decided to put filming of the show on hold while he took the girl to see a Catholic priest to rid her of the curse.  Bagans filmed the exorcism on camera. He claims the priest indeed managed to banish the demon from the girl's body and that she has since recovered. He plans to return to filming in December, said the website.




No nonsense in China:  "China today executed a man who killed a two-year-old girl by throwing her on the ground following a row with her mother over a parking space.  Han Lei was sentenced to death in September after the incident in which he confronted the child's mother in a car park in Beijing, claiming her shopping trolley was in his way.  During the altercation in July, he beat the woman to the ground, snatched the child from her buggy and raised her above his head before throwing her to the ground.  He and a friend in the vehicle then drove away. The toddler died two days later of her injuries, provoking widespread public outrage.  Han was sentenced to death two months after the incident. He appealed against the penalty without success.  He had claimed to have been drunk and told Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court during his trial he believed he was only throwing a trolley to the ground.  But China's Supreme Court approved the sentence and he was executed on Friday, the Beijing No. 1 Intermediate People's Court said on a verified microblog account.  Han was sentenced to life in prison in 1996 for stealing a car but was released 2012 after the sentence was commuted, the reports said."




Red chalk self portrait of Leonardo da Vinci said to have mystical powers and hidden from Hitler during World War II:  "The only existing self-portrait by Italian master Leonardo da Vinci is to make a rare appearance in a new exhibition in Turin in northern Italy, organisers said Tuesday.  The fragile and fading chalk sketch, which has only been put on show for the public three times in the last century, will be displayed for two and a half months as part of 'Leonardo and the treasures of the king', which opens on Thursday at the in the Royal Library in Turin.  Italian lore has it that the gaze of Leonardo is so intense that those who view it become stronger as a result.  There are rumours that this supernatural quality was why it was moved to Rome in the Second World war - in an effort to stop Hitler using it to gain even greater power."



And don't forget to catch up with all the  Strange Justice before you go.




October, 2014 and earlier postings from this site now archived HERE or here or here


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