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News » News of the Weird

True Love

A weekly roundup of international news oddities.

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True Love
Kelly McGraw, 37, of Portsmouth, England, and her husband, James, 40, have enjoyed playing pranks on each other throughout their 24-year marriage. But before Christmas, as James was plotting a way to get back at Kelly for a "dodgy" haircut she'd given him, he came up with a gloriously permanent idea: He had his thigh tattooed with a less-than-flattering photo of Kelly, asleep on a plane with her mouth gaping open, as James mocked her behind her head. "I'm one up at the moment," James told The Sun, "but I'm also scared because I don't know what she's now planning." Kelly was unforgiving: "I was horrified. I couldn't believe it. ... We do mess about anyway, but this is on another level. ... He needs to watch his back."

Bright Ideas
A romney ewe living on a farm near Auckland, New Zealand, is getting some relief from an unusual problem, thanks to a clever veterinarian and a brassiere meant for humans. Rose the sheep had suffered damage to her udders when she produced a high volume of milk during her pregnancy with triplets. "When this happens," Dr. Sarah Clews told Stuff, "the udder can hang so low that it can be traumatized on the ground." The condition can sometimes be a cause for euthanasia, but Clews thought a bra might help lift the udders and allow them to heal. Rose's owners eventually located a 24J maternity bra big enough to do the job, and it worked—after two or three weeks of wearing the bra, Rose's udders recovered enough that surgery was no longer needed.

• Justin and Nissa-Lynn Parson of McKinney, Texas, were all in when their son Cayden, 12, asked for a magnifying glass for Christmas. "We thought, 'Oh, he wants to magnify something'" to read, Nissa-Lynn told KDFW. Instead, Cayden and his brother, Ashton, used the glass to light a newspaper on fire on the family's front porch, which soon spread to the yard, eventually destroying the lawn and some of the family's Christmas lights. "We ran inside and started screaming," Cayden said. The family doused the fire with "pitchers of water, blankets smothering it, sprinklers turned on, hose turned on," Nissa-Lynn recounted, adding that now Cayden "will definitely have yard work to do once spring comes."

Least Competent Criminal
In Jefferson County, Colo., would-be car thief Todd Sheldon, 36, has finally admitted it's just not the vocation for him, according to police. Fox News reported Sheldon had tried over recent weeks to steal multiple vehicles, according to the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, but each time he was caught in the act—first by a homeowner, then by sheriff's deputies minutes later "just down the street," shocking the deputies by telling them, "I'm trying to steal this truck." He was taken into custody and bonded out, but a week later, deputies responding to a report of someone trying to break into a car again found Sheldon. "I really suck at this," Sheldon allegedly told an officer. Sheldon remains in jail as of Dec. 27.

Bah, Humbug!
Poppy Leigh, 13, of Manchester, England, hoped wrapping her waist-length hair around an empty plastic water bottle and decorating it with lights like a Christmas tree atop her head would bring good cheer to her mates and teachers at Manchester Health Academy on Dec. 20. Instead, school authorities told her she had to either take the decorations off or go home. Her mom, Christie, wasn't happy about it: "It's just a bit of fun and Christmas cheer," she told Metro News. But Principal Kevin Green huffed: "The Academy has the highest of expectations around uniform and teaching and learning, and ... whilst it was a remarkably creative hairstyle, it was, unfortunately, inappropriate for school."

Oops!
As she enjoyed an Aldi mince pie in early December, caterer Angela McGill, 52, of Glasgow, Scotland, thought one bite seemed particularly "rough and really hard—I thought it was a tough piece of pastry!" she told Metro News. Instead, McGill soon realized she had swallowed her partial dentures with two false teeth. Hospital X-rays confirmed the dentures were caught halfway down her throat, but the staff advised her pulling them out would only cause more harm. It took 72 hours for the plate to pass. "It was ever so funny!" she said. "And I was really enjoying the mince pie, too."

• Sandra Smith, 59, of St. Petersburg, Fla., was cited for careless driving on Dec. 29, after crashing her 1994 Oldsmobile Cutlass into a mausoleum at the Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery, damaging the facades of three above-ground graves, WFLA reported. Florida Highway Patrol troopers said Smith was driving in a grass lot at the cemetery when she "failed to avoid a mausoleum on the property." Her passenger, 63-year-old Betty Strickland, went to the hospital with critical injuries.

Precocious
The newest tattoo artist in the Haji Lane area of Singapore is Lilith Siow, 12. She learned the art from her father, Joseph, who has operated a tattoo business for 20 years, reported Asia One on Dec. 30. In the past year, Lilith has tattooed at least a dozen customers, although she admitted that she was nervous at first, taking 90 minutes to complete her first. "I was afraid at the beginning. ... Once a tattoo sets, it is forever," she said. As her confidence grows, so does her advocacy for the art: She disagrees that people with tattoos are "bad people."

Animal Shenanigans
Police in Elizabethtown, Ky., were called Dec. 27 to the parking lot of a CVS pharmacy over a "public menace," according to WKYT. The culprit was a "hostile chicken" that "pecked viciously" at the officers and "made some adept use of vehicles for cover" before they were able to corral it in a plastic milk crate, according to the police department's Facebook page. Officers transferred the foul fowl to "someone who can give him more suitable accommodations," then attended to their wounds with "some doughnut therapy."

Sour Grapes
Japanese YouTuber Marina Fujiwara has harnessed the pain she feels when she sees couples basking in their love at the holidays and developed a sort of schadenfreudean device: a light that turns on whenever anyone breaks up on social media. Oddity Central reported on Dec. 27 that Fujiwara's device is connected to the internet through a "bridge" and is set to light up whenever a breakup status is posted on Twitter. "I want to celebrate Christmas," she said. "But when you see a couple in the world going on a Christmas date and doing something like that, I am attacked by a huge sense of loneliness." While her machine is not available commercially, Fujiwara says it's easy enough to set one up for yourself. (Check her YouTube channel for directions.)

Dreams Do Come True
Joan, 89, and her friend Pauline, 84, had their wishes fulfilled in early December after asking administrators at the Glastonbury Court care home in Bury St. Edmunds, England, for an attractive man with a "large chest and big biceps" to visit. Sure enough, a male stripper dressed as a fireman arrived at the home to entertain the ladies, waving his belt around his head as he danced for them. "I wish he could visit us every day!" gushed Joan to the Daily Mail. "He made me feel like I was young again." Joan made her request through the home's wishing tree initiative, which others have used to ask for things like a shopping trip or a day at the beach. "This isn't the typical kind of visitor we have," said home manager Sharlene Van Tonder, "but based on the response, he was one of the most popular."

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