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News » News of the Weird

Weird Sports

A weekly roundup of international news oddities



Weird Sports
The World Toe Wrestling Federation has announced that the 2021 championship matches will go ahead in August in Derbyshire, England, (what a relief!) and organizers are looking for people who want to dip their toes in the water of pro competition. Toe wrestling, The Northern Echo reported, takes place sitting down and barefoot, with the competitors' toes linked. But matches are no tiptoe through the tulips: Ben "Total Destruction" Woodroffe, who is ranked second in the world (and had his toenails surgically removed to give him a competitive edge), had his ankle snapped in two places by 16-time champion Alan "Nasty" Nash—during a practice session. "It's a people's sport; there are no levels or qualifiers, and anyone can join," Woodroffe said encouragingly.

A stone marking the border between Belgium and France dates back to 1819, but its provenance was no deterrent for a Belgian farmer who became annoyed that it was placed right where he needed to drive his tractor. The BBC reported that the farmer relocated the stone about 7.5 feet into French territory—a move that has tickled officials on both sides. "I was happy, my town was bigger," said David Lavaux, the mayor of Erquelinnes in Belgium. "But the mayor of Bousignies-sur-Roc didn't agree." The farmer will be asked to move the stone back; "If he shows good will, he won't have a problem, we will settle this issue amicably," Lavaux said. Otherwise, he may face criminal charges.

• Kevin Johnson was arrested in Maricopa County, Arizona, after he left behind an obvious bit of evidence when he slashed two of his neighbor's tires, the Maricopa Monitor reported. Francesca Wikoff found her flat tires on April 15, along with a severed finger lying on the driveway, and police said a trail of blood led to a nearby home. The night before, Johnson had allegedly become drunk and belligerent at a neighborhood get-together, where he shoved and threatened Wikoff and her husband before being asked to leave. He was charged with criminal damage and assault, along with other offenses.

A police officer in Leicestershire, England, finally got his wish, to "tick off a water-based pursuit in landlocked Leicester," on April 28. The 37-year-old perp was wanted for suspicion of assault and breaching a restraining order, Leicestershire Live reported. Police located his narrowboat, which has a top speed of 4 mph, on the Grand Union Canal, and one officer rode his bike alongside the boat for 8 miles as others waited for it at Lock 37. "The suspect was arrested as he left the boat to travel through a lock," a spokesperson said.

The Birds
There may be just 500 California condors left in the world, but about 20 of them are meeting up at the home of Cinda Mickols in Tehachapi, California. Mickols' daughter, Seana Quintero, said the imposing birds showed up at the beginning of May, the Associated Press reported, and have trashed her mother's deck. They've knocked over plants, scratched railings and ruined a spa cover and decorative flags. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service suggested "harmless hazing" methods to disperse the protected birds, such as shouting and clapping, or spraying water.

The Way the World Works
Matt Perkins and his husband were in the midst of having a pool installed in the backyard of their new home in Las Vegas when police and crime scene investigators showed up on April 26. The pool builders had unearthed some bones buried about 5 feet below the surface, the Associated Press reported. The bones turned out not to be human; they are those of a horse or other large mammal. More important, they are not recent: Nevada Science Center Research Director Joshua Bonde said they're between 6,000 and 14,000 years old, dating to Earth's most recent Ice Age. The area was once a watering spot for wildlife in the Mohave Desert. Bonde said U.S. laws give ownership of fossils to property owners; Perkins is deciding how best to preserve the antiquities.

The Weirdo-American Community
In rural Moffat, Colorado, the body of 45-year-old Amy Carlson, known as Mother God by the spiritual group Love Has Won, was found dead and mummified on April 28. Her body was wrapped in a sleeping bag and decorated with Christmas lights, Fox News reported. One of Carlson's followers told police that he took in a group of people who he believes transported her body from California to his home. Saguache County Coroner Tom Perrin told police he believes Carlson died about four weeks ago. Seven people were arrested in connection with the case; they were also charged with child abuse, as two minors were found in the home.

Bright Idea
Here's one way to keep your neighbors at a distance: Build a wall made of cow dung. In Lodi Township, Michigan, one farmer did just that, constructing a 250-foot-long wall of manure after disputing a property line with Wayne Lambarth. The wall generates an unpleasant stench, Lambarth told Fox News, but the anonymous farmer who built it denies it's a "poop wall." "It's a compost fence," he said. Officials in the area have said nothing can be done about it because it is on private property.

Read the Label
Michigander Yacedrah Williams got into sticky trouble in late April when she mistook a bottle of nail glue for eye drops, Fox News reported. Williams fell asleep with her contact lenses in, and when she woke up, she wanted to take them out. She reached into her purse for eye drops but grabbed the nail glue she uses to fix broken fingernails—and immediately recognized her mistake. "I was trying to pull my eyes apart, but I couldn't," Williams said. Her husband rushed her to the ER, where doctors opened her eyes and removed her contacts—which they believe saved her vision. She did lose her eyelashes, though. Dr. George Williams noted, "If it's any comfort to her, she's not the first person to make this mistake."

Traffic outside a school in China's Henan province was so bad that one student's mother, Ms. Meng, spent $154,000 having two footbridges built over the road so that kids could cross safely. In addition, the school is located on lower ground, and students had to walk through puddles outside the building. "The water will spill over the stairs where schoolchildren stand to wait for their parents like little birds," Meng said, according to Oddity Central. "My child's feet turned white because they were soaking in water." Meng did not tell her son that she funded the footbridges. "I just did what I can afford to do. You can't take money with you after death."

Madison Kohout, 19, moved from Oklahoma to Piggott, Arkansas, in March to be nearer to a family she had become close with. She found an apartment and signed a lease after sundown, with the landlord telling her she could move in that evening if she'd like: "No one's going to hear anything. They can't really hear very well." About a week later, she noticed a sign outside the complex that said "Senior Living Apartments." "I realized I moved myself into a retirement community," Kohout told The New York Times. "I can't believe I did this." However, in the spirit of lemons and lemonade, Kohout is making the best of it. "It's like having extra sets of grandparents," she said.

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