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News » News of the Weird

Not Your Job

A weekly roundup of international news oddities



Not Your Job
Mary K. Brown, 38, of Durand, Wisconsin, was charged with physical abuse of an elder person after she performed surgery on a man who was recovering under her care, WQOW-TV reported. Brown was working as a hospice nurse at Spring Valley Health and Rehab Center, where she cared for a patient suffering from severe frostbite on his feet. On May 27, Brown took it upon herself to remove the victim's right foot—without a doctor's order or permission. Another nurse, who held the victim's hand during the procedure, said he was moaning and squeezing her hand, and he told yet another nurse that he felt everything, and it hurt very bad. Brown told one nurse that her family has a taxidermy shop and she intended to preserve the foot and put it on display with a sign saying, "Wear your boots, kids." She is due in court on Dec. 6.

College dreams were scattered across a highway in El Paso, Texas, on Oct. 28 when a UPS truck lost its load of SAT tests that had been completed on Oct. 27 at El Paso High School, KTSM-TV reported. Senior class vice president Santiago Gonzalez said the school called a meeting to discuss the lost tests. All but 55 of them were recovered; the College Board is working with those students to set a retest date. Student body president Zyenna Martinez is worried about identity theft: "(The tests) have all of our identification and information ... where we live, our address, our date of birth ... and it stinks because our identity is out there right now."

One Man's Trash ...
German collector Alexander Smoljanovic is on the hunt for a special item to complete his collection, Metro News reported. Smoljanovic wants a purple Sulo 240-liter wheeled trash can, available only in the United Kingdom, to round out his collection of more than 100 full-size wheelies. "I have miniatures and real wheelie bins from USA, Australia, France, U.K. and Germany. Almost every color is available. The most valuable colors are purple, gold, silver and transparent," he said. He hopes for a donation, but he's willing to pay for the elusive purple wheelie. "Some people tell me, 'Now I consider my wheelie bin from another angle.'"

Alexander Tominsky, 31, of Philadelphia invited the public to assemble and watch him eat an entire rotisserie chicken—for the 40th day in a row, The New York Times reported. Dubbed "The Chicken Man," Tominsky placed fliers around Philly to advertise his consumption of the 40th bird, and dozens of people showed up at a pier on the Delaware River on Nov. 6 to watch. "Eat that bird!" they chanted. And he did. Why? He told the Times that much of the world is in pain, so he needed to do something painful to himself that would make others smile. After 40 days of cramping and bloating, Tominsky was looking forward to a sushi dinner.

Unclear on the Concept
As 61-year-old James Hodges—who is legally blind—walked down the street in Columbia County, Florida, on Oct. 31, Deputy Jayme Gohde noticed the walking stick folded up in Hodges' back pocket and thought it was a gun. She stopped him and handcuffed him after he refused to produce his ID. But, The Washington Post reported, she and her sergeant learned he had no outstanding warrants, and he clearly wasn't armed, so she was prepared to release him. Then Hodges asked for her name and badge number, and her sergeant said, according to body cam footage, "You know what, put him in jail for resisting." On Nov. 7, charges against Hodges were dropped; on Nov. 8, Sheriff Mark Hunter announced that the sergeant had been demoted and Gohde was suspended for two days without pay. Both will receive remedial civil rights training.

What's the Point?
Japanese convenience store Lawson is testing a new candy that tastes like emptiness, Oddity Central reported. "Aji no Shinai? Ame," or "Tasteless? Candy," apparently has a slight odor but almost no flavor. The makers are hoping that people who use candy just to keep their mouths and throats moist will appreciate the flavorless variety.

Two Weirds for the Price of One
TSA officers at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport made a "hen you believe it?" (their pun, not ours) discovery on Nov. 8 as they screened luggage: a pistol stuffed inside a raw chicken. The Associated Press reported that both raw meat and firearms are allowed on airplanes—just not packed together. TSA posted a photo of the bang-bang chicken on its Instagram account but did not identify the traveler or whether it made any arrests.

Look, Up in the Sky!
Dustin Procita lives in rural northern California among cattle ranches and farms. On the evening of Nov. 4, Procita "heard a big bang. I started to smell smoke, and I went onto my porch, and it was completely engulfed in flames," he told KCRA-TV. Procita saved one of his two dogs from the fire, which he believes was caused by a meteorite landing on his house. Video taken by people nearby shows a bright ball of light falling from the sky; the Taurid meteor showers were happening in that area when the fire occurred. Firefighters battled the blaze for several hours before getting it under control. Procita said he might have to buy a lottery ticket: "They said it's a 1-in-4 trillion chance."

Least Competent Criminals
• Two unnamed thieves stole merchandise from the Ross Dress for Less store in Springfield, Missouri, on Nov. 5, KY3-TV reported. They apparently then hopped into two separate cars to make their getaway—and crashed into each other. Police said the suspects tried to flee on foot but were quickly apprehended; they'll face misdemeanor theft charges.

• A man caught running out of a Vons supermarket in La Verne, California, on Nov. 8 with a cart full of Tide liquid laundry detergent turned out to be a murder suspect, KTLA-TV reported. Police arrested the unnamed man, who had 20 bottles of the soap, and then realized he had a $2 million warrant out for his arrest. The detergent was returned to the store.

Farmer Richard Nicholson of Cannon Hall Farm in Barnsley, England, wondered why his sheep were gradually turning pink, the BBC reported on Nov. 5. He thought farm workers were using spray markers "too enthusiastically," but eventually realized the ewes were rubbing against a new, red feeder, and the color was bleeding onto them. "Visitors to the farm certainly do a double take when walking past," Nicholson said. "They're starting to look like a bunch of old ladies who've had the same hairdo." His sheep get sheared only twice a year, so the flock will be "pink ladies" for a while.

But Why?
Stouffer's—of TV dinner fame—has a new offering sure to appeal to ... Garfield? Stouffer's Lasagna Inspired Bloody Mary Mix, the company's first foray into drink mixes, claims to sport a "bold and savory" flavor, Food & Wine magazine reports. "For decades, Stouffer's Lasagna has had a special place at holiday tables," said Megan McLaughlin, the company's brand marketing manager. Really? But here's the good news: While you can't buy the mixer, they'll be giving away bottles starting at noon Eastern time on Nov. 14 through the online merchandise store. Mark your calendar!

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