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News » News of the Weird

Wait, What?

A weekly roundup of international news oddities



Wait, What?
The Tail Company, based in the United Kingdom, is starting production of its newest offering, miTail—a Bluetooth-enabled animatronic tail that wearers can control with a phone app, Nerdist reported on May 13. For example, a wearer might want to express emotions such as "frustrated and tense" or "calm and relaxed." Other moves include the Short Wag, the Happy Wag and the Erect Tremble. The company plans to start delivering the Kickstarter-supported products in August.

Oh, Canada
Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Porcupine Plain, Saskatchewan, had a mystery on their hands on May 7 when someone reported a load of fenceposts missing, RCMP reported on its website. Officers opened an investigation, but the "bucktooth bandits" were quickly identified: "The stolen goods were located in a beaver dam," said Constable Conrad Rickards. "A beaver—or beavers—helped themselves to the stash of posts and used them to help build a dam. I tried locating said beavers but they were GOA (gone on arrival)."

Don't Go There
• A papier-mache statue of a stegosaurus, placed outside the Cubic Building in a suburb of Barcelona, Spain, had an odorous secret, The Washington Post reported. On May 22, a father and son who were admiring the statue noticed a foul stench coming from it and peered into a crack in the dinosaur's leg. There they saw the body of a man. The 39-year-old was reported missing just hours before he was discovered; the local police said they don't suspect foul play. Instead, they believe the man dropped his phone in the statue's leg and tried to retrieve it, becoming stuck headfirst. He may have been in the statue for a couple of days, authorities said.

• Staff at the El Paso Zoo in Texas are preparing to press charges against a woman who jumped into a spider monkey exhibit on May 22 and fed Flamin' Hot Cheetos to the animals, the El Paso Times reported. Zookeepers found out about the stunt through Instagram, where someone posted video of the woman underneath a waterfall, with the monkeys just feet away. "This young lady decided to hop a fence, climb through some bushes, drop down into a 4-feet-deep moat, walk across the moat and then try to feed the spider monkeys," zoo director Joe Montisano said. "It was stupid. She's very fortunate that it didn't have a worse outcome for her or the animals." While the woman hasn't been named, her employer, Lovett Law Firm, recognized her, and she was fired from her job there.

Police Report
Two teenagers on their way home from a graduation party in the early hours of May 23 made the night even more memorable when their car crashed into the roof of a home in Eureka, Missouri, outside St. Louis. Authorities told KSDK-TV that the driver lost control, rolled down an embankment, flipped over a fence and crashed front-end first into the master bathroom of the home. Startlingly, there were no injuries from the crash; the two teens escaped through the master bedroom, and two occupants of the home, who were sleeping at the time, were unharmed.

Bright Ideas
• On May 25, New York City councilwoman Helen Rosenthal virtually attended a finance committee meeting, commenting on school classroom sizes and education funding, as she shifted her focus back and forth between the camera and ... the road. She was driving her car during the meeting, the New York Post reported. During her time as a council member, she has advocated for improving bike lanes and expanding speed camera use, but since 2013, the license plate registered to her car has received 62 traffic violations, including three tickets for speeding in a school zone, all in 2020.

• Adele Belizaire, 54, was held in the Pinellas County (Florida) jail after a stunt she pulled to "blow off steam" on May 11, The Smoking Gun reported. Belizaire, frustrated with her loss of nearly $400 playing slot machines at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Tampa, called the casino on her cellphone that evening from her hotel in Clearwater Beach and said, "I left a bomb in your casino." What she failed to remember was that as a member of the casino's Player's Club, her phone number was on file. In her confession, she admitted that she has "anger issues."

Compelling Explanation
When Lee Bowman's neighbors in Sioux City, Iowa, failed to mow his lawn by the afternoon of May 23, after he had asked them to, he visited their home to complain, then tried to peel a registration sticker off one of their vehicle license plates. Some time later, however, police and firefighters were called to the neighbors' home, which was on fire. Investigators found a pile of sticks and plywood piled against the side of the house and evidence that gas had been used to start the fire. Bowman, 53, told police that he had seen the fire burning but didn't call 911 because it wasn't any of his business. But the Sioux City Journal reported that the kindling came from Bowman's home. The fire caused an estimated $3,000 damage to the home, and the family requested a no-contact order from the court. Meanwhile, Bowman was held at the Woodbury County Jail on suspicion of arson.

Kashe Quest, 2, of Los Angeles has been accepted into Mensa, the high-IQ society. FOX11-TV reported on May 26 that she is the youngest member in the group's history. "At about 17, 18 months, she had recognized all the alphabet, numbers, colors and shapes," said her mother, Sukhjit Athwal. Quest can identify all 50 states by shape and location on a map, is learning Spanish and sign language, and can identify elements on the periodic table. Quest's IQ is measured at 146; the average American's is 100. Athwal admits that Quest "is still a normal 2-year-old where we have negotiations, we have tantrums ... We're kind of going at her pace, and we want to just make sure that she is youthful for as long as she can be."

Sign of the Times
During the pandemic, demand for port-a-potties in Maine increased. Customers were renting them for longer periods, and factories that make them ran into manufacturing issues, WGME-TV reported. As a result, South Portland is experiencing a critical deficit of the outdoor toilets. Supplier Royal Flush said they're waiting for another shipment that was supposed to arrive in April, and new customers will have to take a back seat to returning customers until the backlog is resolved, probably in late June.

On May 23, when the 20-year-old daughter of Vero Beach, Florida, resident Tyler Worden, 41, declined her father's invitation to eat the pizza he had brought to her home, the elder Worden became angry and "turned around and threw a slice of pizza at her, striking her in the face," according to the arrest affidavit filed by the Indian River Sheriff's Office. After Worden refused to leave, his daughter called the police, who noted the pizza toppings strewn across the entryway, the tomato sauce on the left side of the woman's face and the strong scent of alcohol on Worden's breath. The pizza hurler was placed under arrest on charges of battery.

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