Odd News Archive - April 2009

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April 30, 2009

Father delivers baby with Youtube's help: Father Marc Stephens successfully delivered his baby son after watching Do It Yourself baby birth video clips on YouTube.

When Mr Stephens, 28, decided to "Google" how to deliver a baby, he had no idea that he would be putting the information into practice just hours later when his wife went into labour three weeks early on March 21.

The naval engineer, who already has three children with his wife Jo, also 28, decided to search the internet as she felt some discomfort....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Inmate can't rename himself 'Sinner': Judge: LINCOLN, Nebraska - He may have broken the law, but a Nebraska inmate still can't change his name to "Sinner Lawrence Bilskirnir."

Court documents say 23-year-old Jonathan L. Thomas cited his Norse religion in seeking the name change to Sinner Lawrence Bilskirnir. He says he "is a heathen and Thor is his 'High God.'"....full story from The Times of India


Police officer attacked by her own dog after being shot by robber: A police officer set her dog on an armed robber after he shot her in the leg - only for the alsatian to attack her instead.

Preston, England, Police dog handler Katie Johnson confronted gunman Wayne McDonald and his accomplice David Tyrell after receiving an emergency call over an armed robbery at a pub.

When McDonald blasted her in the leg with a shotgun, she set her dog Chaos on him, believing that he would save the day....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 29, 2009

Australia's favourite brands hated on the web: An online audit of Australia's favourite brands has revealed dozens of hate websites set up by livid customers and ex-employees.

Hundreds of angry messages are posted each week on sites including Dell Hell, Qantas Sucks World, Fitness First Sucks, McSucks, I Hate Banks and AmexSux, lashing out at poor service, faulty goods, high charges and more....full story from NEWS.com.au


Florida man arrested protesting sand: SARASOTA, Fla. - Police arrested a 70-year-old man in Siesta Key, Florida, for protesting the use of brown replacement sand on a beach of white sand, his wife says.

Anne Overbeck said her husband, Jim, was arrested when he threw his body on top of a pile of the brown sand to stop a bulldozer from blending the off-color sand into Siesta Beach's white quartz sand, the Sarasota (Fla.) Herald-Tribune said Wednesday....full story from UPI


UK villagers use scarecrow policeman to slow traffic: The scarecrow is armed with a plastic bottle for a 'speed camera' and dressed in policeman's hat and black suit made to look like a uniform with a flourescent yellow jacket.

The tactic has so far been a success in the village of Crosby-on-Eden, Cumbria, England.

Sandra McKeane, 43, who made the 'sleeping policeman', is worried there will be an accident if cars do not start slowing down....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 28, 2009

English man wakes up Irish after brain surgery: A Yorkshire man woke up from brain surgery to find he'd turned from a flat vowelled, thrifty dalesman into a blarney kissing, 'Danny Boy' singing, happy-go-lucky Dubliner.

The Daily Mail reports that 30 year old Chris Gregory spent three days on life support, after a blood vessel in his brain ruptured. While the staff were relieved to see him come round, they were non-plussed when he opened his mouth and began speaking in a broad Irish accent.

He then spent 30 minutes lilting away and bursting into a rendition of 'Danny Boy'....full story from The Register


Men try to steal pickup truck that doesn't run: Even though the truck wouldn't run, it was still a crime to try to steal it. A Jefferson County sheriff's deputy thought it looked a little odd when three men were pushing a pickup truck near the county jail on Sunday, with a fourth man in the cab to steer. The county seal on the side of the truck helped confirm the deputy's suspicions....full story from CBS News


Man accused of leading long chase in garbage truck: A 40-year-old man was jailed after leading deputies on a 57-mile chase, in a garbage truck. At one point, a Morrison County sheriff's deputy tried to stop the truck by firing a shotgun into its engine. It all started when authorities got a report Tuesday about an intoxicated man trying to get into a home. The man left, driving the truck, before deputies arrived....full story from CBS News


Woman: Psychic led to lost chihuahua: ROCHESTER, Mich. - The Michigan owners of a 6-pound chihuahua carried away by high winds credit a pet psychic with guiding them back to the dog.

Dorothy Utley, 72, of Rochester, Mich., said the chihuahua, Tinker Bell, was carried away by 70 mph winds Saturday at the Dixieland Flea Market in Waterford, Mich., The Detroit News reported Tuesday....full story from UPI

April 27, 2009

Furry pig sells for $367 at swine auction: The Austrian Mangalitza gilt attracted fascinated onlookers when it was taken to market at Gisburn Auction Mart in Lancashire, England, by builder George Jackson.

Only a handful the curly-coated pigs are known to thrive in the UK, after being imported from the continent three years ago.

Mr Jackson, from Kirby Stephen, in the Eden Valley, said: "I just got them because they were so interesting to look at. I did have three originally but I've sold two of them already....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph

April 26, 2009

Swiss canton bans nude hiking: APPENZELL, Switzerland - Hikers will no longer be able to stroll naked through the idyllic Alpine countryside of Appenzell Innerrhoden after the conservative Swiss canton banned nude walking there.

Appenzell Innerrhoden has become hugely popular for naked ramblers due to its tranquil, picture-perfect meadows and valleys. But the hordes offended Appenzellers' sensitivities and they voted Sunday to order them to cover up....full story from Reuters UK

April 25, 2009

Bull caught on CCTV in supermarket: It may not have been a china shop, but shoppers were left amazed when a young bull charged through an Irish supermarket.

The bull was captured on CCTV entering Cummins' SuperValu in Ballinrobe, County Mayo.

It made its way down an aisle to the store area, where it had a look around, before turning around and going out the same automatic door which it had come in....full story w/pics from The Daily Telegraph


Cinema warns elderly customers over 'juvenile' behaviour: A cinema which screens classic films for pensioners has warned their elderly customers about their "unacceptable and juvenile" behaviour.

Pensioners at the Odeon, in Leicester, England, have been reprimanded for threatening, pushing, poking, bullying, harassing and intimidating staff, saving seats for friends and queue jumping.

Concerns were also raised about customers abusing the complimentary tea and biscuits arrangement....full story from The Daily Telegraph

April 24, 2009

Centerfolds getting slimmer as population gets fatter: While the Body Mass Index (BMI) of American women continues to expand, the BMI of Playboy centerfolds continues to fall.

Wired magazine compiled the stats of every Playboy centerfold between 1953 and January of this year, and found their average body mass has shrunk almost 10 percent....full story from Asylum


Bidding closes for student's virginity: STUTTGART, Germany - A Romanian teenager who auctioned her virginity to fund her college studies in Germany has not said whether she will accept the top bid of $14,800.

Alina Percea, who produced a doctor's report saying she was still a virgin, after a teacher raised doubts about the subject, said previously she was seeking a sum nearly $59,000 higher than the top bid to help fund her college education in Stuttgart, Germany, The Sun (London) reported Friday....full story from UPI


Teacher attacked by ungrateful squirrel: ANN ARBOR - A Michigan teacher guiding students around the University of Michigan campus was attacked by an irate squirrel when she tried to help one of its young.

The teacher, from Detroit, spotted the squirrels Thursday as she ushered her students through a campus tour, The Ann Arbor News reported Friday. She noticed the young squirrels were not in their nest and a crow was eyeing one that appeared to have been left behind....full story from UPI

Alberta uses English beach in advert: A land-locked Canadian province has used a picturesque beach on England's North Sea in a video promoting itself to tourists.

Despite the two places being 5,000 miles apart, advertising executives charged with attracting visitors to Alberta decided to feature Bamburgh beach in Northumberland.

A promotional video contains a five-second clip with a boy and a girl happily running through sand dunes and tall grass on Britain's heritage coastline....full story w/video from The Daily Telegraph


Casino floor flooded with counterfeit gambling chips: Melbourne, Australia's Crown casino is in crisis after discovering its tables had been flooded with a fortune in counterfeit gambling chips.

Casino bosses were scrambling to check the authenticity of a staggering $13.7 million worth of $1000 chips after near-perfect fakes were detected yesterday.

Crown last night admitted it had so far found $36,000 in fraudulent chips, the Herald Sun reports....full story from NEWS.com.au

April 23, 2009

Nepal firm to expand mobile coverage to Everest: KATHMANDU - A Nepali telecom firm plans to expand its mobile phone services to the top of Mount Everest, benefiting climbers on the world's highest mountain, a company official said on Thursday.

Hundreds of climbers, who go to the 8,850 metre (29,035 feet) Mount Everest every year, depend on expensive satellite phones to speak with their families as the remote Himalayan region does not have communication facilities....full story from Reuters UK


Holidaymakers in Costa Rica offered hotel suite in Boeing aeroplane: Holidaymakers wanting to feel like high-flyers can relax in a luxurious new hotel suite in Costa Rica - inside a converted vintage Boeing airliner.

The two bedroom suite is housed inside the fuselage of a 1965 Boeing 727 which was destined for scrap.

Jutting out from a hillside, the Boeing offers views of the ocean and the jungle from balconies built on each wing....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Pensioner on mobility scooter rescued from motorway: An elderly man ended up on the motorway in his mobility scooter after taking a wrong turn.

Motorists spotted the 89-year-old crawling along at 8mph in the hard shoulder of the M20 at Cheriton, near Folkestone, Kent, England.

Police were called in as cars, lorries and coaches hurtled past the man at 70mph on Tuesday afternoon....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Water bottle sparks fire in airliner cockpit: A bottle of water caused a fire in the cockpit of a Airbus A320 passenger aircraft as it was about to land at a Queensland, Australia airport.

According to an Australian Transport Safety Bureau report, the pilots were lining up on the runway when they smelled smoke last month.

It was coming from the cover of a log carried in the cockpit to record inflight defects in mechanical, navigation, electrical, hydraulic and radio equipment....full story from The Courier-Mail (AU)

April 22, 2009

Scots to pioneer remote sex via glowing ring: A Scottish company trialling "intimate communication over a distance" is seeking couples interested in drawing lines of light on each other's bodies rather than the more-traditional teledildonics hardware.

The technology comes from Forres-based Distance Labs, who are looking for three couples in which one partner is based near Edinburgh, and the other more than 250km away, to see if drawing lines of light on each other's bodies can replicate some of the ambiance involved in relationships....full story from The Register


The latest fad: Bikini jeans: LONDON: Just when people thought fashion world couldn't get any weirder, along comes - the bikini jeans!

Priced at 62 pounds, the eye-catching apparel features a thong sewn into a pair of supremely low-slung jeans.

Brainchild of Japanese clothing company Sanna's, the booty-cut bottoms were born after a customer said she wanted jeans that sat lower than the hips but did not need to be hiked up in an unladylike fashion, reports Wales Online....full story from The Times of India


Record attempt reaps 217K texts, $26K phone bill: PHILADELPHIA - Their thumbs sure must be sore. Two central Pennsylvania friends spent most of March in a text-messaging record attempt, exchanging a thumbs-flying total of 217,000. For one of the two, that meant an inches-thick itemized bill for $26,000.

Nick Andes, 29, and Doug Klinger, 30, were relying on their unlimited text messaging plans to get them through the escapade, so Andes didn't expect such a big bill....full story from Yahoo News

April 21, 2009

New Zealand motel bans entire town: The 16,000 residents of the Lower Hutt suburb of Wainuiomata were slapped with a blanket ban by Palmerston North's Supreme Motor Lodge this week, after a series of misdemeanours by visiting sports teams.

Supreme's owner, Steve Donnelly - an Australian - said guests from Wainuiomata were more trouble than they were worth.

"Having had about a hundred people from there over the last couple of years and maybe one that we liked ... it is not worth it and we would do the same to anyone who causes us that level of stress....full story from The Dominion Post


Astronaut says we're not alone: Apollo 14 astronaut Edgar D. Mitchell, the sixth man ever to walk on the moon, has a message for all citizens of Earth: We are not alone.

"We are being visited," the 79-year-old grandfatherly "spacefarer" told 100 or so UFOlogists gathered at a National Press Club conference called by the Paradigm Research Group (motto: "It's not about lights in the sky; it's about lies on the ground")....full story from The Washington Times

April 20, 2009

Mexico cartel tells smugglers to shun drugs and drink: MEXICO CITY - A cartel engaged in Mexico's deadly drug wars has told its members to avoid heavy drinking and using narcotics and live a clean family life as it tries to build a well-run criminal organisation, police say.

Rafael Cedeno, a leader of "The Family" cartel based in the western state of Michoacan, told police after he was arrested at the weekend he had trained several thousand cartel members with courses in ethics and personal improvement....full story from Reuters UK


In Omaha, it pays to go to church: Leaders at an Omaha church took a novel approach to assessing the quality of their services -- paying people to attend church.

The Covenant Presbyterian Church paid eight people $25 each to attend a service Sunday and complete a survey about the experience that included questions about whether the church conveyed a meaningful message, KETV, Omaha, reported Monday....full story from UPI


Florida Lotto winner seeks to open a nude dude ranch: You've heard of nude beaches, but how about a nude dude ranch? Tim Clements hit a $3.3 million jackpot in 2004, and wants to return to the farm life he grew up in. Clements and David Jennings, co-owner of the ranch, said the farm is secluded enough to be in the buff.

But they have two big problems -- local zoning laws and a nudity ban in Hernando County.....full story from CBS News


'Weird wind event' traps men under a golf cart: Police said two men were injured after they became trapped under a golf car at a country club in suburban New York when their vehicle flipped over during a "weird little wind event."

Police say strong winds were to blame for the mishap at the Beekman Country club in East Fishkill, about 66 miles north of Manhattan. Both men suffered head injuries and abrasions, but refused treatment....full story from CBS News


Passengers 'used crew area for sex': A Hong Kong airline is investigating claims that a couple travelling first class from Toronto, Canada, used the crew rest area to join the "mile-high club".

The couple were allegedly invited by an airline staff member to use the rest area onboard a Cathay Pacific plane to have sex after being spotted getting intimate in their seats, German news agency DPA reports.

The passenger, a US doctor, said he knew the staff member from previous flights....full story from NEWS.com.au


Japanese cleaning up in Paris: Japanese expatriates took to the streets of Paris armed with brooms to clean up the city for the tens of thousands of Japanese tourists who visit each year.

To the amusement or indifference of passers-by, the team of Japanese expats called the Greenbirds chose to give a stretch of the Champs Elysees avenue their monthly cleaning treatment.

"We want to make Paris more beautiful, at the moment it is so-so," said Tada Osamu, a 36-year old engineer from Nara who leads the team....full story w/pic from Stuff.co.nz

April 19, 2009

Purses that look like flowers: Designer purses disguised to look like flowers, stones and even a cactus are selling for as much as £1,000 (US$1,480).

Kathleen Dustin, who creates the accessories from clay, said they are designed for women who are confident about their style.

She said: "Most people are amazed at them. They are for the woman who is very confident in her own personal style because they make a very strong statement....full story w/pic form The Sunday Telegraph (UK)

April 18, 2009

Tickets go on sale for Titanic cruise: More than 100 cabins have been booked for a cruise that is to follow the Titanic's fateful route to mark the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the ship.

Bookings for the cruise opened on Wednesday -- exactly 97 years after the Titanic was lost -- with the departure date set for early April in 2012.

The Balmoral, operated by Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, whose parent company Harland and Wolff built the Titanic, will carry 1,309 passengers -- the same number that sailed on the maiden voyage -- and follow the same course, leaving Southampton before docking at the Irish port of Cobh, where the Titanic made its final call on April 11, 1912....full story from The Daily Telegraph

April 17, 2009

A new Q - search for spy science chief: Any fan of James Bond will know that science and technology have always been the fictional spy's most potent weapons.

Without his cigarette capable of shooting a jet-powered projectile accurately up to 30 yards, the Rolex watch equipped with a small laser beam cutting tool and, of course, his trademark Aston Martin with machine guns, missiles and ejector seat, Bond would have been finished long ago.

His famous gadgets have got MI6 officer 007 out of several tight spots - though much to the anguish of the agency's chief boffin [scientist], "Q", the ingenious devices produced with such loving care have often ended up battered or blown up during Bond's escapades....full story from the BBC


50-year-old mother has cosmetic surgery to look like her daughter: With their flowing blonde hair, hourglass figures and slender, toned legs, they could easily pass for twins. Both look fabulous in their matching polka dot dresses and, as Janet and Jane Cunliffe happily recount, potential boyfriends often struggle to tell them apart.

Hardly surprising, as both weigh in at 8st (112 pounds) and, save for a couple of inches in height (at 5ft 6in, Jane is two inches taller) and different eye colours (Jane's are brown, Janet's are blue) they are virtually identical.

But Janet and Jane are not twins. They aren't even sisters. They are mother and daughter....full story w/pics from the Daily Mail (UK)


'Bone voyage' as pets get airline: A new airline scheduled to take off in the US fully expects its passengers to behave like animals.

On Pet Airways, of Delray Beach, Florida, all pets travel in the main cabin and owners are not allowed on board - not even in the cargo hold.

The airline claims to be the first designed specifically for the safe and comfortable transportation of pets....full story from the BBC

April 16, 2009

Police nix music to avoid fees: TROWBRIDGE, England - Police officials in England's Wiltshire County said officers have been banned from listening to music at work to avoid having to pay license fees.

Officials said they took the move of banning music played publicly from radios, Web sites, TVs and MP3 players after the Performing Rights Society for Music demanded the police force pay a $34,000 license fee, The Daily Telegraph reported Thursday....full story from UPI

April 15, 2009

UK businessman develops extreme crime deterrent device: A colourful businessman who says he is being harassed by burglars and arsonists has deployed a modified Roman siege engine to protect his premises. For use as a non-lethal security measure the catapult is loaded with chicken excrement, but even so its use has been forbidden by the police - apparently resulting in more break-ins.

The poo-flinging machine, described by its owner "Grumpy Joe" Weston-Webb as "an enormous replica of a Roman boulder thrower"*, was originally built for the purpose of hurling female stunt performers across rivers....full story from The Register


US library bans 'offensive bodily odors' from entering: An American library has banned people with 'offensive bodily odours' from using its facilities.

Because of an increase in homelessness along with the winter weather, large numbers of people are crowding into libraries during the day to stay warm.

Therefore, poor personal hygiene has joined the more familiar prohibitions at the Schaumburg Township District Library in suburban Chicago, such as running, talking loudly or carrying an uncovered drink....full story from The Times of India


Doctors 'find tree in man's lung': A fir tree has been found growing inside a man's lung by surgeons who were operating on him for suspected cancer.

The tree, measuring 5cm, was discovered by Russian doctors when they opened up Artyom Sidorkin, 28, to remove what they thought was a tumour.

Medical staff believe that Mr Sidorkin somehow inhaled a seed, which later sprouted into a small fir tree inside his lung....full story w/pics from The Daily Mail....see video

April 14, 2009

Cash stash in bra stops killer bullet: Police say a wad of cash stuffed in a woman's bra saved her life during a shootout in northeastern Brazil.

Salvador city police spokesman Vicente de Paula says 58-year-old Ivonete Pereira de Oliveira was a passenger on a bus that two gunmen held up on Saturday.

He says an armed off-duty policeman on the bus opened fire.

In the ensuing gunbattle, a bullet struck the left side of Oliveira's chest....full story from CNews


Texas elementary school gets noise citation: A fed-up Texas homeowner has gotten a noise citation issued against his neighbor _ an elementary school. Police in suburban Universal City say they had to issue the citation after Butch Armstrong complained about the noise coming from Olympia Elementary School during the school's Family Fitness Day on March 20.

Principal Terri LeBleu says the school had already built a fence, removed loudspeakers and installed noise-reducing backing on basketball goals in response to Armstrong's previous complaints....full story from CBS News


Garlic smell closes court building: Garlic oil was spread on radiators at a Crown Court, forcing hearings to be abanadoned after the smell spread throught the building.

Police are investigating areas along the first floor and corridor to the restaurant at Bristol Crown Court where oil is thought to have been dropped along radiators and in plant pots.

CCTV captured the suspect as he doused the areas with the liquid but it is unclear whether the man is a disgruntled defendant or a member of the public....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 13, 2009

Police fired for drunken Red Square drive: MOSCOW - Three off-duty Russian policemen were fired Monday for driving drunk through Moscow's Red Square in the early hours of the morning, dressed in their police uniforms.

"A medical examination revealed that all three policemen were drunk," Moscow City Police said in a statement about the incident which took place Friday.

"(They have) tarnished the honour and dignity of police officers....full story from Reuters UK


Woman spots her rented flat being destroyed on Facebook: Carolyn Lorimer, a woman who let out her flat to a young couple, evicted them after discovering photographs of wild parties at the property on the social networking website Facebook.

Miss Lorimer, 26, was looking at the internet site - which links a wide network of friends - when she noticed pictures of a house party in Folkstone, Kent, that looked incredibly familiar.

On closer inspection, she realised that the tables being danced upon belonged to her, the holes in the plaster were punched through her walls and the broken television lying in a corner was upended in her sitting room....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Twitter and Facebook could harm moral values, scientists warn: Using Twitter and Facebook could harm moral values, as they don't allow time for compassion or admiration, scientists have warned.

Today's fast-paced media could be making us indifferent to human suffering and should allow time for us to reflect, according to researchers.

They found that emotions linked to moral sense are slow to respond to news and events and have failed to keep up with the modern world....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


The firm where 23 employees are from the same family: Many companies like to boast that they are a family firm, but Clarkwood Engineering can make a better case than most.

Twenty three members of the same family are employed by the manufacturer in Wolverhampton, more than half the workforce.

The youngest is 17-year-old machinist Ryan Guy. The managing director is his 63-year-old grandfather, Roger Wood....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 12, 2009

Book returned after 110 years: BROCKVILLE, ONTARIO - An overdue library book with a storied past has been returned to its home 110 years late.

Though the book's fine would total more than $9,000, the 83-year-old American who returned it to a museum south of Ottawa last week isn't being forced to pay up....full story from CNews


Dog eats enough clothes to fill a washing line: Vets who operated on a dog expecting to find a tumour pulled out enough clothes to fill a washing line.

Bailey the golden retriever had eaten two golf gloves, two rugby gloves, one mitten, one stocking and nine socks.

He had been eating the assorted garments for years and the vet who pulled out the items said it was like performing a magic trick....full story from The Sunday Telegraph (UK)

April 10, 2009

Obama orders pizza from St. Louis, Chicago miffed: It just doesn't add up.

Proud Chicagoan Barack Obama plus a relocation to Washington equals the president special ordering Chicago-style deep-dish pizza from Pi ... in St. Louis?

But it's true. Management at the trendy restaurant in St. Louis' Delmar Loop neighborhood confirmed Thursday that owner Chris Sommers and business partner Ryan Mangilardo flew to Washington with a suitcase of dough, cheese and pizza pans to prepare a deep-dish dinner for 140 White House guests Friday night....full story from the Chicago Tribune


Scientists create chocoholic dream: all the taste with none of the calories: A new inhaler - dubbed Le Whif - has been developed by scientists, allowing chocoholics to enjoy all the treats they can handle for zero calories.

The revolutionary gadget means chocolate lovers can indulge their guilty pleasure without putting on weight.

The gadget lets users breathe in chocolate to curb cravings and satisfy their sweet tooth....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 9, 2009

Hammer time for cell phone used to run up $5K bill: A cell phone used by a Wyoming 13-year-old to run up a nearly $5,000 phone bill will text no more thanks to her angry father and his hammer. Dena Christoffersen of Cheyenne sent or received about 20,000 text messages over about a month, and her parents' phone plan didn't cover texting.

Gregg Christoffersen told KUSA-TV of Denver this week that he thought texting had been disabled on her daughter's phone, which he smashed hours after getting a phone bill for more than $4,750....full story from CBS News


Saudi man divorces wife by text message: RIYADH - A Saudi man has divorced his wife by text message, a newspaper said on Thursday.

The man was in Iraq when he sent the SMS informing her she was no longer his spouse. He followed up with a telephone call to two of his relatives, the daily Arab News reported....full story from Reuters UK


Can a tree be stolen? Takes 8yrs to decide: MUMBAI, INDIA - Kisan Namaji Bhise, a 63-year-old resident of Yavatmal, thought it shady that a tree should disappear from his property. He rushed to the local police station to register an FIR for theft under the Indian Penal Code. He named four men who, he alleged, had made off with his tree "worth one thousand rupees".

The police, who were reluctant to go out on a limb, said in their report to the magistrate that they couldn't establish whether Bhise's complaint was true....full story from The Times of India

April 8, 2009

Mounties hold moustache contest: RICHMOND, B.C. - Mounties in Richmond, B.C., are thrilled their moustaches have raised money for a children's charity but some will be equally glad to get rid of the hair above their lips when the contest is over.

Corp. Jennifer Pound says about 45 RCMP officers started growing moustaches during Moustache March in support of the Children's Hospital Foundation and have so far raised about $850....full story from CNews


City seeks to calm Amtrak mooners: LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif. - City officials in Laguna Niguel, Calif., said new rules against public urination and alcohol drinking are aimed at controlling "Mooning the Amtrak" events.

The City Council approved a new ordinance Tuesday that bans public urination and defecation as well as prohibiting the public consumption of alcohol, the Orange County (Calif.) Register reported Wednesday....full story from UPI


Community service for UFO hoax: MORRIS PLAINS, N.J. - Two New Jersey men who admitted to a series of UFO hoaxes have been sentenced to 50 hours each of community service.

Science teacher Joe Rudy, 28, of Chester, and salesman Chris Russo, 29, of Morris Plains, said they released helium balloons with traffic flares attached from a field on the border of Morris Plains and Hanover on five occasions between Jan. 5 and Feb. 19, the (Newark) New Jersey Star-Ledger reported Wednesday....full story from UPI


Struggling US towns print their own currency: If you're fresh out of dollars, perhaps a Detroit Cheer, Bay Back or BerkShare will do.

Communities across America are bypassing the dollar and creating their own currencies in an attempt to help both consumers and businesses struggling in the recession.

The idea, borrowed from the Depression era when the currencies were known as "scrip", is designed to boost local spending and keep money circulating within the community....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 7, 2009

Man accidentally shoots himself at drive-through: A trip through the drive-thru ends with a trip to the hospital for a young man who accidentally shot himself in the leg Tuesday. Rapid City Police and emergency medical personnel responded to the incident at the west-side Taco John's shortly after one o'clock this afternoon. Sgt. Wayne Asscherick says the 24-year-old man had a pistol in his car, tried to clear the weapon and accidentally shot himself in the calf while he was in the drive-thru....full story w/video from KEVN-TV (Rapid City, SD)


Motorist survives three accidents in an hour: BERLIN - A German woman was involved in three car accidents in less than an hour that left a total of seven vehicles damaged but she suffered only slight injuries from the series of mishaps, police said Tuesday.

The 69-year-old woman from Berlin first crashed into three cars while trying to pull out of a supermarket car park on the Baltic resort island of Usedom.

Then, she accidentally stepped on the accelerator and sped across a lawn before crashing into a nearby house, police said....full story from Reuters UK


In-flight romp puts bang in Bangalore: LONDON: Passengers on board a Bangalore-London flight were in for high drama recently, when a drunk model got enraged after catching her boyfriend romping with a woman next to him.

Sources have claimed that blonde Sarah Hannon woke up from a stupor and found Daniel Melia enjoying a sex act with pretty Clare Irby, with whom he had gotten friendly on board....full story from The Times of India


Skeleton found in tree 29 years after suicide: BERLIN: The skeleton of a German retiree who tied himself to the top of a tree and shot himself to death nearly 30 years ago has been found by a hiker.

German police in the southern town of Landshut said on Monday the 69-year-old man disappeared in 1980 and had been classified as missing....story from The Times of India


Bacon sandwich a hangover cure: A bacon sandwich really does cure a hangover - by boosting the level of amines which clear the head, scientists have found.

Researchers claim food also speeds up the metabolism helping the body get rid of the booze more quickly.

Elin Roberts, of Newcastle University's Centre for Life said: "Food doesn't soak up the alcohol but it does increase your metabolism helping you deal with the after-effects of over indulgence. So food will often help you feel better....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Crane collapses destroying small yacht: A 40-tonne crane collapsed and destroyed the £20,000 yacht it was lowering into a harbour.

The driver was forced to leap 12ft to safety as hydraulic crane crashed through a wooden jetty and tore through the middle of the new Westerly Konsort boat at Portchester Sailing Club in Portchester, Hants, England, on Monday afternoon.

Pauline Musselwhite, from Portchester Sailing Club, said: "It started to fall slowly, then there was an almighty crash as it went into the boat....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 6, 2009

Man coughs up inch-long nail: COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Prax Sanchez says he doesn't recall any serious hammer-and-nail mishaps in his past.

Yet doctors administering an MRI on the 72-year-old Colorado man last month abruptly stopped the exam to tell him there seemed to be something metallic in his face....full story from CNews

April 5, 2009

1913 message in a bottle received: A message left in a bottle in 1913 has been found on the shores of the Spokane River in Washington.

Darin Winkler said he was walking along the river's edge when he spotted what appeared to be an antique bottle surrounded by rubbish, the Spokane (Wash.) Spokesman-Review reported Sunday....full story from UPI


Love Shack becomes reality after council relents: A couple have won permission to call their wooden home 'Love Shack' following an eight month battle with their council.

Artists Simon and Sheba Cassini lodged an application for the name change when they moved into the ex-boat builder's shed on Eel Pie Island, Twickenham, south west London last August.

But planners at Richmond Council insisted the new name could cause confusion to the emergency services....full story w/pic from The Sunday Telegraph (UK)


Footballer given yellow card for distracting a penalty taker by breaking wind: The referee decided the Chorlton Villa [England] player made the noise deliberately and the spot-kick, which was saved, was retaken. The second time it went in.

Then Villa's goalkeeper was sent off for saying the referee was "the worst he had seen in years".

Minutes later another Villa player was dismissed for questioning the earlier decision....full story from The Sunday Telegraph (UK)

April 4, 2009

Brazil's racy soap operas inspire drop in birth rate, rise in divorce: Brazil's popular soap operas have done more than just entertain people - they have reduced the birthrate by 3 million and driven up the rate of divorce, a new report has found.

Their colourful story lines of glamorous love triangles, paternity mysteries and rags-to-riches successes have long dominated Brazilian airwaves.

Now the racy telenovelas that are the mainstays of the country's powerful TV Globo network are being credited with something more than just their audience pulling-power....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Corpse was apparently cut to fit coffin: ALLENDALE, S.C. - James Hines was a giant, a 2-meter, 136-kilogram preacher and funk musician so big that after he died in 2004, a macabre rumour began circulating in this small town that the undertaker had to cut off his legs to fit him in the coffin.

This week, after years of whispers, Hines' body was exhumed, and the gruesome story appeared to be all too true.

The coroner's office said only that it had found "undesirable evidence," and a criminal investigation has been opened....full story from Stuff.co.nz


Police rescue woman on runaway scooter: PERRANPORTH, England - An 87-year-old woman in England had to be rescued by police when her mobility scooter sped out of control.

The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday Eileen Bishop and her husband Anthony were on their way to church when she suddenly zipped away from him on her scooter, which is essentially a motorized wheelchair.

"Suddenly she passed me at full tilt," Anthony Bishop said. "I shouted after her, but she is a bit deaf. I couldn't chase her as I have had a triple heart bypass....full story from UPI

April 3, 2009

Thief nabbed with 68 tubes of toothpaste: Police in northern Germany are searching for a man who tried to walk out of a supermarket with 68 tubes of toothpaste stuffed into his clothing.

"We don't know if he had bad teeth," a police spokeswoman in Rostock said Friday....full story from Reuters UK


Bomb blows hole in Lenin statue: One of Russia's most famous statues of Vladimir Lenin has been bombed, leaving the Bolshevik revolutionary with a gaping hole in his rear.

The bronze statue, in the city of St Petersburg, was badly damaged before dawn on Wednesday, when the blast blew a hole in Lenin's coat.

No-one was hurt in the attack, the motive for which was unknown....full story w/pic from the BBC


Scientists reveal how eating chocolate can help improve your math: Eating chocolate could improve the brain's ability to do math, a new study suggests.

Mental arithmetic became easier after volunteers had been given large amounts of compounds found in chocolate, called flavanols, in a hot cocoa drink.

They were also less likely to feel tired or mentally drained, the findings, presented at the British Psychological Society annual conference in Brighton show....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


German woman divorces husband for cleaning too much: A German woman has divorced her husband of 15 years because she was fed up with him cleaning all the time.

She ran out of patience when he knocked down and rebuilt a wall at their home when it got dirty, Christian Kropp, court judge in the central town of Sondershausen, said on Thursday....full story from The Times of India

April 2, 2009

Dancing Pope advert banned: A UK nightclub leaflet showing the late Pope John Paul II holding a bottle of beer and dancing with a blonde woman has been banned.

The Advertising Standards Authority branded the flyer offensive and ordered it to be removed after a complaint by the Ipswich and Suffolk Council for Racial Equality (ISCRE) on behalf of angry Poles and Catholics.

The leaflet showed Pope John Paul II with a bottle of beer dancing with a blonde woman wearing a short dress....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Canadian Prime Minister denies being in toilet during official photo: His absence for the photo sent German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner into bemused giggles while Russian President Dmitry Medvedev looked equally amused.

Mr Harper was apparently meant to slot in next to Merkel and behind the Argentine President but failed to appear until the photocall was finished, leaving a gap in the line-up.

Even Gordon Brown failed to spot that the number of world leaders had diminished from 30 to 29....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

April 1, 2009

April Fools' gags across the Internet: While the potentially dangerous Conficker worm was being tracked throughout April Fools' Day, more harmless hoaxes were being fired out across the Internet.

Everyone from Google to The Guardian were rolling out prank websites Wednesday. It's become an April 1 tradition on the web to showcase absurd technological breakthroughs and silly pseudo-innovations....full story from CNews


Internet error leads to 11,000 free pizzas: Domino's Pizza officials said an Internet error led to Cincinnati area outlets dolling out nearly 11,000 free pizzas in a single day.

Tim McIntyre, Domino's vice president of communications, said the company created an online-only promotion in December that would give a free pizza for the codeword "bailout," but the campaign never received the go-ahead from senior officials, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported Wednesday.

"It had never technically been activated, but we hadn't turned it off, either," he said....full story from UPI


911! I'm locked in my car...Oh, pull lock? Thanks: KISSIMMEE, Fla. - A woman locked in her car in Kissimmee called 911 on Tuesday.

"It's getting very hot in here, and I'm not feeling well," the caller told the dispatcher.

The woman said nothing electrical was working, so her locks wouldn't open.

The dispatcher calmly told her to pull the lock up with her hand....full story w/911 audio from WESH-TV (Orlando)

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