Odd News - June 2010 Archive


Odd News Archive - June 2010

Note: Stories from some news services expire after a few weeks. If you click on a link to the original story it is possible that you will be re-directed to an archives page with the option to access the news item for a small fee.


June 30, 2010

Oldest US postal worker retires in Calif. at 95: REDLANDS, Calif. – It wasn't snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night that stopped Chester Arthur Reed from his appointed round. The mail handler just felt it was time to call it quits at age 95.

The fork lift operator retired Wednesday as the nation's oldest postal worker, ending a career without taking a single sick day. It's a feat he attributes to a healthy diet of watermelon, alkaline water and an onion sandwich with mayo every day.

"If everyone in the nation ate watermelons, they'd get rid of all the doctors," Reed said....full story with pics & video from Yahoo News


Of Irish origin? Get the proof and earn discounts: DUBLIN Do you have Irish ancestry? Are you travelling to Ireland soon and hoping for discounts? The Irish government may have the answer for you.

The Department of Foreign Affairs has issued a tender for a company to distribute "Certificates of Irish Heritage," which holders could display in their homes, give to their children as gifts or use to get discounts at Irish tourist attractions.

Eligibility criteria would not be "overly cumbersome" and probably won't require the submission of any original documents, though birth certificates, death or marriage records could be taken into consideration, the ministry said....full story from Reuters UK

June 29, 2010

Psychic Octopus picks Germany to beat Argentina: Paul, a two-year-old octopus born in England now living in a German aquarium, has a 100-percent winning streak at the World Cup -- and even accurately predicted Serbia would beat Germany in their Group D match-up earlier in the tournament.

The eight-legged octopus, a denizen of Sea Life in the western town of Oberhausen, has turned into a celebrity oracle for getting all four picks right so far -- including last Sunday's elimination round match when Germany beat England....full story from Reuters UK


Terrafugia Transition'Flying car' gets go-ahead: The Terrafugia Transition, a light aircraft that can convert into a road-legal automobile, is to go into production after being given a special weight exemption by the US Federal Aviation Administration.

The Transition was designed as a "light sport" aircraft, the smallest kind of private aeroplane under FAA classification, with a maximum weight of 1,320lb. But the manufacturers found it impossible to fit the safety features - airbags, crumple zones and roll cage, for instance - that are required for road vehicles into that weight.

Uniquely, however, the FAA has granted the Transition an exemption - allowing it to be classified as a light sport aircraft despite being 120lb over the limit....full story from The Daily Telegraph

June 28, 2010

International Space Station sex ban: Commanders do not allow sexual intercourse on the International Space Station, it has been disclosed.

"We are a group of professionals," said Alan Poindexter, a NASA commander, during a visit to Tokyo, when asked about the consequences if astronauts boldly went where no others have been.

"We treat each other with respect and we have a great working relationship. Personal relationships are not ... an issue," said a serious-faced Mr Poindexter....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Observer columnist in online domain mixup: You might think being a Sunday newspaper columnist is a pretty easy gig.

Think again. They have to conjure provocative opinions on everything, on demand, often with only the weakest grasp of the facts.

To highlight their plight, here we present Barbara Ellen's attempt in yesterday's Observer to wrestle copy from ICANN's decision to approve a .xxx web domain....full story from The Register

June 27, 2010

Woman falls out window, lands on car, sleeps: LAKEMOOR, Ill.—Police said a 30-year-old woman apparently fell out of a third-story window, landed on her parked car, and then walked into a neighbor's house, where she fell asleep on a couch for two hours. Lakemoor Police Chief Mike Marchese said family members believe the woman woke up before dawn Thursday and fell through the screen while opening a third-floor window....full story from The Boston Globe


Alice Cooper, say you will!: They grew up as devoted fans of rocker Alice Cooper and now a Wellington [New Zealand] couple want him to officiate at their wedding.

Kier Fitzpatrick and Lisa Strachan were engaged at New Year and quickly decided a traditional wedding wasn't for them. Taking their cue from what they love about Cooper - his theatrical style and humour in his music - they settled on Las Vegas as the venue with a Cooper impersonator doing the business.

That was until a friend had a bright idea: why not try for the real thing?....full story from the Sunday Star Times (NZ)

June 26, 2010

Lost drunk must pay up: A surprised 91-year-old New Zealand resthome resident woke to find an 18-year-old sleeping off a big night in the chair by his bed, a court has heard.

Kerrien James Weale, 18, unemployed, from Takaka Hill, was ordered to pay the pensioner $150 for emotional harm when he appeared in the Nelson District Court this week.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Chris Stringer said Weale entered the pensioner's cottage through a ranchslider....full story from The Nelson Mail (NZ)


World's first bionic cat: A BLACK cat that lost both hind paws after being run over by a combine harvester on the island of Jersey, in the English Channel, was revealed to the world overnight as the world's first cat to be fitted with a pair of flexing bionic legs.

Without the prostheses, Oscar would have been unable to walk and may have been put down.

The two-year-old’s owners, Kate and Mike Nolan, were referred by the local vet to Professor Noel Fitzpatrick, a veterinary surgeon based in Surrey, south England, who pioneers prosthetics....full story w/video from NEWS.com.au

June 25, 2010

Stop it boy, or you'll see my breasts again: A CANADIAN woman has sparked controversy after settling a neighbourhood noise dispute by flashing her breasts at a five-year-old boy.

Marika De Florio, 56, said the boy was driving her mad by driving a loud all-terrain vehicle past her house, the Toronto Sun reported.

She decided to go topless in the street so that the boy's grandparents would be forced to call him inside....full story from NEWS.com.au


Thieves steal kitchen sink from South Africa police: South Africa's police are investigating after thieves stripped a police station of all its contents, down to the kitchen sink.

The office was under renovations and ready for re-occupation when the thieves hit, reports South Africa's Times Newspaper.

The robbers helped themselves to everything of value - including doors, cupboards, basins, cutlery, tiles, furniture, electrical equipment and mortuary fridges....full story from BBC News

June 24, 2010

Man builds nuclear reactor in warehouse: A NEW York web designer for fashion house Gucci surprised his neighbours by revealing he built a nuclear reactor in a Brooklyn warehouse.

Mark Suppes, a 32-year-old amateur physicist with a passion for sustainable energy, constructed the $40,000 homemade fusion reactor in his spare time, the BBC reported.

He is the 38th independent physicist in the word to achieve nuclear fusion from a self-built reactor and forms part of a growing community of "fusioneers."....full story from NEWS.com.au


Want to leave work early? Torch a filing cabinet - But read this cautionary Florida tale first: A Florida woman who started a fire in her office so she could get off work early has been jailed for nine months, the St Petersburg Times reports.

Michelle Perrino, 40, of New Port Richey, executed her cunning plan on 12 May 2009, at Bayonet Point Oxygen. However, she subsequently blew it when she "mentioned the fire's origin - a filing cabinet - during an employee meeting".

This proved ill-advised, since employees hadn't been told where the fire started....full story from The Register


Man run over by truck 'driven' by his dog: A Florida man was run over by his own pickup truck after his dog put it into gear, according to reports.

The truck rolled over Mr Bishop's left side, but he managed to escape serious injury, and was able to stop the vehicle and go into his house....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


LR Doty shipwreckLake Michigan shipwreck found perfectly preserved after 112 years: A wooden ship that sank more than a century ago in a violent storm on Lake Michigan has been found perfectly preesrved by the cold fresh waters.

Finding the 300-foot LR Doty was important because it was the largest wooden ship that remained unaccounted for, said Brendon Baillod, the president of the Wisconsin Underwater Archaeology Association.

The Doty was carrying a cargo of corn from south Chicago to Ontario, Canada, in October 1898 when it sailed into a terrible storm, Mr Baillod said. Along with snow and sleet, there were heavy winds that whipped up waves of up to 30 feet....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 23, 2010

Women reveal all for X-rayted pin-up calendar: The German tentacle of display outfit EIZO has come up with a provocative pin-up calendar which shows that female beauty is indeed more than skin deep.

This 2010 calendar was for some reason released in June, but there are still plenty of months left to promote EIZO's "medical imaging high precision displays for the examination and diagnosis of radiographs".

The blurb explains: "Whereas craftsmen are showered with pin-up-calendars at the end of every year, this kind of present is less popular among medics....full story w/pics from The Register


Technology firms 'more trusted than traditional media': Technology giants such as Google, Apple and Microsoft are now more trusted than traditional news media, a study has found.

American researchers also found that people now trusted the technology heavyweights more than social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

According to the new study, the majority of people rated online privacy as one of their major concerns when using the internet after both Google and Facebook were hit by rows over people's private details being disclosed on the web....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 22, 2010

Digital Ad Plates coming soon?California mulls digital number plates with adverts to tackle deficit: California is considering using digital car number plates, which would switch to advertisements when vehicles were stuck in traffic, as a way to raise money to tackle its $19 billion (£12.8 billion) budget deficit.

The electronic plates would look like standard plates when the car was in motion, showing the registration number.

But when a car stopped for more than four seconds, in a jam or at a red light, scrolling adverts would be displayed to people sitting in the vehicles behind. Advertisers would buy space from the state's Department of Motor Vehicles....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Politician's Tom Jones complex: Charles Zevallos, a politician in Peru's Amazon basin, often wins kisses from female supporters - but things have moved to a whole new level as women at his rallies have started throwing their underwear at him.

Zevallos, a candidate for mayor in the province of Maynas, has made a tradition of giving fans, watches or soccer balls at his rallies in exchange for women's kisses....full story w/pic from Stuff.co.nz

June 21, 2010

Turnout high at National Hollerin' Contest: SPIVEY'S CORNER, N.C. - Organizers of the 42nd annual National Hollerin' Contest in North Carolina said turnout was high with 27 competitors and hundreds of spectators.

Chief organizer Wayne Edwards said people from across the country came Saturday to Spivey's Corner to share their best hollers, hoots, yodels and bellows to benefit the Spivey's Corner Volunteer Fire Department, the Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer reported Monday....full story from UPI


Postcard arrives after 95 years: A postcard sent home by a Bosnian soldier in World War I has finally reached his family after 95 years, thanks to an American antique collector, who delivered it personally to the man's grandson after buying it at a fair in Long Beach, California.

"Oh my God," was all Nadir Bicakcic could say when he recognised the face on the card.

During a visit to Sarajevo, collector Nihad Eric Dzinovic accidentally met Bicakcic, who was looking around a local antique shop in downtown Sarajevo, and the name rang a bell....full story from Stuff.co.nz

June 20, 2010

Burglar escapes police search by hiding under bed: A man was startled by a burglar hiding beneath his bed after police officers failed to find the intruder in a search of the house.

Adam Magee, 30, had called the police after a neighbour reported seeing a man climbing into an opened window at the house on Stockton Road, Hartlepool [England].

But a search of the house turned up nothing unusual, and Mr Magee climbed into his bed for the night after being assured there was no threat....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 19, 2010

Tiger, 2 camels missing in Canada: ST. LIBOIRE, Quebec - Searchers failed Saturday to find a tiger and two camels that disappeared from a motel parking lot in St. Liboire, Quebec, officials said.

They did, however, find the pickup truck being used to tow the trailer in which the animals were being transported in Surete du Quebec, The (Montreal) Gazette reported....full story from UPI

Follow-up: Stolen tiger and camels recovered in Canada


Man jailed for breaking into jail: A man has begun a one-year jail term after breaking back into a prison in Mozambique.

Macamelo Antonio was sentenced for destroying state property after he used a hammer and crowbar to enter the prison compound this week.

Antonio had been given 10 years for the murder of his stepfather in 2004 and was released on parole for good behaviour last year....full story from ABC News (AU)

June 18, 2010

Vatican orders Catholics to watch the Blues Brothers: The Vatican has given a big fat thumbs up to the Blues Brothers, the 30-year-old movie that saw John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd outwit cops, Illinois Nazis and ex-girlfriends to save a Catholic orphanage.

Pope Benedict's in-house magazine L'Osservatore Romano has declared the film a "Catholic Classic" which should be recommended viewing for Papists everywhere.

Some media sources seem to be surprised at the decision, with the Telegraph pointing out lines such as "Curtis, I don't want to listen to no jive-ass preacher talking to me about Heaven and Hell."....full story from The Register


Man accused of snowmobiling drunk in June: A New York state man was arrested Wednesday after allegedly driving a snowmobile while drunk - in June.

Local media report police responded a neighbourhood in Wayland, a town about 80 km south of Rochester because of reports of a man driving a snowmobile across private yards and causing damage....full story from CNews

June 17, 2010

Double exposure for sailor in B.C.: It may have been his desire to get a tan, it could have been the booze, but a sailor from France recently took off all his clothes in Victoria, B.C. - twice.

About 8,000 sailors from all over the world were in the city last weekend for the International Fleet Review. Police reported few problems, but they did get called to a local hotel after a "drunken French mariner" removed all of his clothes in the lobby, the Victoria Police Department's operations blog reported....full story from CNews


Florida heiress leaves $3m and Miami mansion to chihuahua: An heiress has left her $8.3 million (£5 million) Miami Beach home and a $3 million trust fund to her three dogs.

Gail Posner, daughter of the corporate takeover king Victor Posner, died aged 67 in March, but her three dogs continue to have full-time staff, wear £10,000 Cartier necklaces and enjoy weekly spa treatments.

However, Conchita, a chihuaha, and two other dogs called April Maria and Lucia, might have to scale back on the luxuries if Posner's only son, Bret Carr, a filmmaker, gets his way....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 16, 2010

Philippines declare war on cyberlingo: The government of the Philippines has declared "all out war" on what it considers a major threat to the purity of English - the "jejemon" invasion of social networks and mobe text messaging.

According to this in-depth report from Oz, the word jejemon is a fusion of 'jeje' (a variant of SMS "hehe"), and the suffix "mon", culled from the Japanese term "Pokemon".

Over the last year, jejemon has taken the Philippines by storm, in the process morphing from what was initially a way of abbreviating text messages into a linguistic monster in which brevity is no longer the prime objective....full story from The Register


Australian state bans swearing: Visiting Australia? Here's a tip: Don't stumble out of a bar in Queensland, yell some swear words at someone who looked at you the wrong way and then pee on a wall - it will cost you.

Police in the Australian state can now issue a fine for $100 (or $88.50 CDN) for swearing in public and $300 ($265) for disorderly conduct, such as public urination, the Courier Mail newspaper reported....full story from CNews

June 15, 2010

Newsweek: 'Zombies rise from grave, invade US': An army of zombies has invaded America, according to Newsweek

.

"The undead have risen from their graves and invaded large portions of the East Coast," the venerable American news publication has reported on its website, Newsweek.com. "Driven only by an insatiable desire for brains, there seems to be no stopping their ruthless push forward."....full story w/pic from The Register


Breastfeeding driver pulled over: A mother in Germany has been issued several fines after police pulled her over for allegedly breastfeeding her baby while driving.

Police said the 47-year-old woman was driving in Velbert, located near the border with the Netherlands, when an officer saw her nursing her 18-month-old....full story from CNews

June 14, 2010

Farmer takes on Coke over cola-flavoured milk: A dairy farmer in New Zealand has locked horns with soft drinks giant Coca-Cola over his invention of fizzy cola-flavoured milk in a can.

Richard Revell, who farms in the lush North Island pastureland where Hobbiton was created for The Lord of the Rings films, has been banned from selling his drink at the largest agricultural show in the southern hemisphere.

Organisers of the annual National Fieldays in Hamilton, which attracts up to 140,000 visitors, have told him his product violates its contract with the international drinks corporation....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Scuba diver reunited with camera lost six months ago and 1,000 miles away: When Dick de Bruin lost his camera during a scuba diving expedition off the Caribbean island of Aruba, he held out little hope of seeing it again.

The Royal Dutch Navy sergeant could only watch helplessly as it floated away while he and his dive team explored a wreck.

Yet seven months, 1,100 miles later and one hungry turtle attack later, the camera is back with Mr de Bruin after an extraordinary ocean odyssey, and all thanks to the tireless investigative skills of a Florida coastguard....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 13, 2010

Vuvuzelas will send shock waves through British sport: The Vuvuzela has been heard blasting around the World Cup stadiums in South Africa, so William Langley went to see if it might find a home at other sporting events.

Ah, the glorious sounds of an English sporting summer; the whack of willow on leather, the thundering hooves of thoroughbreds, the screams of abuse as I opened up with a vuvuzela at Queens Club.

Be very afraid. The fearsome soundtrack to the World Cup is on its way to a sports event near you. Trees will be stripped of their leaves....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Cabbie ends Extraordinary 8,700 mile taxi ride: After nearly 14,000 kilometres [8,700 mile] of long highways, dusty outback roads and stunning landscapes, Western Australian cabbie Doug Slater received a hero's welcome in Broome as he completed an epic taxi ride showcasing his state to the world.

More than 1,000 people gathered at Broome's famed Cable Beach on Sunday to welcome the amiable 64-year-old as he drove his taxi to the finish line after nine weeks on the road for Tourism WA's Extraordinary Taxi Ride.

Since April 9, Mr Slater has driven 11 pairs of Australian and overseas passengers around WA from Perth and the forests and wine regions of the south-west, through the Goldfields, the Pilbara and the Kimberley....full story from ABC News (AU)

June 12, 2010

World Cup trophy not solid gold: A British chemistry professor has calculated that if the World Cup trophy were really solid gold it would be too heavy for footballers to lift.

Martyn Poliakoff of Nottingham University estimates that a solid gold trophy of its size - 36cm (14 in) high - would weigh at least 70kg (154lb).

He concludes that the trophy, or at least part of it, must be hollow....full story from BBC News


Ugliest power pole competition: The small town of Woodbridge in southern Tasmania has this year attracted plenty of visitors to its annual photographic exhibition.

For the first time the popular town fundraiser is offering a prize for the ugliest photo of power poles or wiring.

The Coordinator Kim Deane says there are several humorous entries....full story from ABC News (AU)

June 11, 2010

GM hits reverse on 'Chevy' ban: General Motors has shifted into reverse gear over what it called a "poorly worded" memo asking staff to stop using the famous nickname "Chevy" for its Chevrolet cars.

The car giant said in a statement that it was "in no way" discouraging customers or fans from using the name after two senior executives requested Chevrolet staff at their headquarters in Detroit stop it, even when "speaking with friends and family".

Chevrolet was for decades America's most popular make of of car and affectionate references to "Chevy" litter popular culture and song lyrics....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Ken WallisRed tape forces record breaking pensioner abroad: A 94-year-old World War Two veteran will have to go abroad to break his world speed record in an autogyro because of red tape in Britain.

Former James Bond stuntman Ken Wallis, MBE, wants to reach a new break neck pace of 140mph over 3km in his amazing hand built twin propeller machine.

The retired RAF wing commander, who flew Little Nellie in the 1967 Bond film You Only Live Twice, set the world speed record in 2002 when his autogyro reached 129.1 mph....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Venezuela's Chavez offers cure for kids' imsomnia: Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is offering parents a cure for children who don't want to go to sleep. Have them watch his televised speeches.

In a television appearance on Thursday to extol the virtues of a portable computer his socialist government plans to introduce at public schools, Chavez said youngsters had stopped him in the street to tell him they saw him on television....full story from Reuters UK

June 10, 2010

Man wants to hire student to drive his Lamborghini: It would be a dream summer job for some students.

A man in New Zealand posted an ad at Student Job Search in Auckland saying he was looking for a tidy and positive student to drive him to business appointments during the summer months. The best part: They'd have to drive his Hummer and Lamborghini....full story from CNews


Sarah Palin 'boob job' debate dominates US right - and left: US political bloggers were working overtime last night on the most crucial issue since the healthcare debate - has Sarah Palin had a boob job?

Since her abortive bid for the White House number two slot Palin has given herself over to campaigning while ducking the actual governing bit. She resigned as governor of Alaska without finishing her term.

While her appearances at Tea Party rallies have dominated the right, now the left has sat up and taken notice after she appeared at a horse racing event sporting what observers believed to be a brand new set of chesticles....full story from The Register

June 9, 2010

Paramedics used ambulance to carry garden rubbish to recycling centre: Paramedics who used an ambulance to transport rubbish to a recycling centre have come under investigation by NHS bosses.

A witness said he was astonished to see two NHS paramedics unloading bags of garden waste from the ambulance at the busy site in St Austell, Cornwall, England.

Matthew Chubb, 27, said the paramedics used the NHS vehicle to jump to the front of the queue. He then watched as the men, who wore identification badges pinned to their dark green uniforms, pulled out at least ten sacks of garden waste from the emergency vehicle....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Cow rescued from family swimming pool: Fire crews were called to rescue a stranded cow after it broke through a fence and stumbled into a family's swimming pool.

The half-tonne animal was winched out of the four-foot deep water by firemen using a harness and a portable crane.

They were called to the scene in Motcombe, Dorset, England on Monday morning after a cottage owner drew the curtains and spotted the cow in his pool....full story w/pic from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 8, 2010

China net addicts' great escape foiled by taxi drivers: An attempt by 14 desperate Chinese internet addicts to break out of an online re-education centre was foiled when the taxis they'd hired to facilitate their getaway dropped them off at the nearest nick.

The 14 teenagers burst out of the internet addiction bootcamp in Jiangsu after overpowering the commandant teacher and tying him up in bed with a quilt, Shanghai Daily reports.

Still wearing their regulation camo uniforms, they hired a pair of taxis to speed them away from the net-Gulag....full story from The Register


Chinese farmer's rocket launcherChinese farmer fires rockets at developers: A Chinese farmer is fighting off property developers who want his land, firing rockets from a homemade cannon made out of a wheelbarrow and pipes, state media said on Tuesday.

Yang Youde, who lives on the outskirts of the bustling city of Wuhan, in central Hubei province, said he had fended off two eviction attempts with his improvised weapon, which uses ammunition made from locally sold fireworks.

"I shot only over their heads to frighten them," he told the China Daily of his attacks on demolition workers sent to move him off his land....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 7, 2010

Golfer crashes cart, fails breathalyzer: LONDON, Ont. - Police have charged a golfer who failed a breathalyzer test after a golf cart crashed through a bridge railing and into a creek.

Lambton OPP said they were called to the Bonnie Doone Golf Course to investigate the crash Saturday around 4:30 p.m.

An officer said the driver and a passenger suffered minor injuries but the cart was destroyed....full story from CNews


$11m jackpot just a 'reset' message, says casino: An American couple were left pondering the nature of fate and fruit machine electronics last week when a "reset" slashed their jackpot from $11m to a more manageable $1627.82.

MaryAnn and Jim McMahon had been shovelling their shrapnel into the fruit machine at the the Wildwood Casino in Cripple Creek, Colorado when they hit the jackpot. Sort of....full story from The Register

June 6, 2010

Soft landingBoy survives falling off balcony after bouncing off palm trees: MIAMI - A four-year-old boy had a lucky escape after falling from a 17th floor hotel balcony only to bounce off palm trees and land with minor injuries.

Rescuers found Joey Williams still alive after he bounced off a cluster of palm trees and landed on a dirt surface near the hotel's swimming pool.

Apart from surviving the 80ft fall he somehow managed to land between two pipes jutting up from the ground....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


World Cup 2010: Health officials tell fans to ditch beer and crisps for water and grapes: A [UK] government quango has urged football fans to choose sparkling water and grapes rather than beer and crisps while watching the World Cup.

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) which has an annual budget of £135m [$US195m], has issued four pages of advice on how to make "healthier choices ... while you're feasting on the footie".

It suggests fans "walk to the pub instead of taking the bus" or "use half-time for a brisk walk and some fresh air"....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)

June 5, 2010

Three arrests after mass water fight in London's Hyde Park 'got out of control': More than 1500 people were said to have taken part in the event in Hyde Park on Friday afternoon.

Such was the size of the fight, believed to have been organised on social networking sites, that it saw the temporary closure of London's main shopping district and the usually busy Oxford Street.

High temperatures throughout on Friday afternoon swelled numbers and what began as good-natured fun soon descended into a police incident....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


Aussies chase naked snorkelling record: Being a beach bum is the perfect way for some to spend a leisurely North Queensland [Australia] Sunday afternoon.

But tomorrow, beach bums will be the real thing, the Townsville Bulletin reports.

About 200 people will attempt to break the world record for the largest gathering of nude snorkellers....full story from NEWS.com.au


Hillary Clinton faux pas over Queen's birthday greeting: The US State Department has been left red-cheeked after sending birthday greetings to the Queen a week early.

The diplomatic faux pas was admitted by spokesman PJ Crowley, who said: "Better a week early than a week late."

The message from US secretary of state Hillary Clinton on behalf of President Obama also honoured the "special relationship" between the US and UK....full story from BBC News

June 4, 2010

The world's ugliest dog is dead: A pedigree dog, crowned the world’s ugliest pooch, has died at the grand old age of 17.

Miss Ellie was a wiggly-eyed Chinese Crested Hairless mutt with a drooping tongue and a scruffy mass of sprouting grey hair. She was also a keen charity fundraiser according to Asheville Citizen-Times, which first reported the dog’s sad demise.

Last year Miss Ellie, who was rescued when she was seven years old, won prizes for being both the world’s ugliest and the world’s cutest dog in separate competitions in the US....full story w/video from The Register


Super drink creates brain cells, prevents wrinkles: North Korea again threatened war with South Korea today but found time to spruik an extraordinary super drink that it claims will multiply brain cells.

The often-shrill KCNA state news agency softened its tone to advertise an anti-oxidation drink made by the Moranbong Carbonated Fruit Juice Joint Venture Company which contains 60 kinds of "micro-elements" extracted from more than 30 species of plants.

"It, with effects of both preventive and curative treatment, helps improve mental and retentive faculties by multiplying brain cells," the agency said....full story from ABC News (AU)

June 3, 2010

Arizona officials baffled by intense dust storms on I-40: The wind in northern Arizona is older than Meteor Crater, but the blinding dust storms that have crippled nearby Interstate 40 are new.

That dust blasts out of the desert in billowing walls, blinding drivers and shutting down about 30 miles of interstate east of Flagstaff for hours, leaving thousands stranded each time.

Until last year, Highway Patrol officials had never closed I-40, but they have shut down the east-west artery 10 times this spring, including twice on May 22-23....full story from The Arizona Republic


Doctors offer cash to examine family jewels: The University of Tasmania [Australia] is offering men money to help doctors develop better genital inspection techniques.

The university's School of Medicine is developing what it calls a MAN-CHECK program, to help doctors-in-training become better skilled at performing sensitive men's examinations.

Men will be employed as 'clinical teaching associates' and provide feedback to medical students on their technique and etiquette....full story from ABC News (AU)


Cop wrestles 8ft alligator - then cuffs it: A Police officer has managed to handcuff an 8ft (2.5m) alligator after wrestling the beast to the ground.

The animal was spotted at a traffic intersection in Palm Harbour, on Florida’s east coast, and caused motorists to panic.

While most police officers would baulk at being sent out on such a job, Lieutenant Richard Nalven was eager to try his cuffing skills....full story w/pic from NEWS.com.au

June 2, 2010

Pittsburgh Penguins ask for some help with flushing toilets: Here's a fact about arenas and stadiums many fans might not know: Before you open the doors to thousands of beer-drinking fans all the toilets need to be tested with one simultaneous flush.

That moment of truth has nearly arrived for the plumbing at the Pittsburgh Penguins' under-construction Consol Energy Center, and the team is making the most of it....full story from USA Today


James Bond Aston Martin on the block for $4m: Wealthy Bond fans were left with heartbeats racing today after it was announced that the spy's most famous car will be auctioned.

Driven by Sean Connery in films Goldfinger and Thunderball, the Aston Martin DB5 is widely regarded as the ultimate Bond car and has never sold before at public auction.

The vehicle comes fully equipped with all the Q modifications, including oil slick and smokescreen capabilities, bulletproof shielding and an ejector seat....full story w/pic from The Register

June 1, 2010

meter maidMother fined after stopping for one minute to read parking sign: Claire Hallam, 45, pulled into the parking bay in Lewisham, south London, so that she could look at a sign telling her when she was allowed to park in the area.

But as soon as she got out to read the sign - which has a big blue 'P' on it, indicating parking is allowed at some point in the day - she was told by a shop owner she should "move quickly" to avoid a fine.

She dashed back into her car and left 60 seconds after she had parked.

However, a CCTV camera caught her on tape and she was promptly issued with a £60 [US$87.48] fine - £1 [US$1.46] for every second she was parked in the space....full story from The Daily Telegraph (UK)


As speculative fever rages, China bursts bean bubble: Germany has banned naked short-selling and the United States may block banks from proprietary trading. But China has taken rules aimed at ensuring market stability to new, tastier lengths.

It has launched a strike-hard campaign against speculators driving up vegetable prices.

Investors are no strangers to Chinese produce, as witnessed last year when garlic was the country's top-performing asset....full story from Reuters UK

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Note: Stories from some news services expire after a few weeks. If you click on a link to the original story it is possible that you will be re-directed to an archives page with the option to access the news item for a small fee.


Odd News Archives
2011 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2010 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2009 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2008 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2007 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2006 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan
2005 Dec Nov Oct Sep Aug Jul Jun May Apr Mar Feb Jan