2017-08-16 / News of The Weird


Distributed by Universal Press Syndicate


The Adair family of Deerfield Beach was startled awake on July 15 by the sound of something meaty crashing onto their roof. When they investigated, they found two packages of Italian pork sausage in the side yard, and three more packages still on the roof. The sausages were in bags marked with the name of a land-clearing company in Alabama. Austin Adair called the company to inquire about the wayward sausages, but “the guy had no idea what I was talking about and probably thought I was crazy,” he said, and the mystery remains unsolved. “I would love to know what really happened,” said Jennie Adair, “because it’s just so, so odd.”

The naked truth

¦ Summers are hot in Lawrence, Kan., and Christopher Steven Carlson, 34, took advantage of the warm temperatures on July 30 to stroll down a sidewalk in the busy college town in his birthday suit — twice. Police first arrested Carlson around 2 p.m. in downtown Lawrence for indecent exposure, after which he paid his $500 fine and was released. He caught a taxi from the Douglas County Jail back to the downtown area, where he stiffed the driver, left his clothes in the car and resumed his in-the-buff constitutional. Local business owner Meg Heriford said: “Our customers were not alarmed. It was more like, ‘Hey, there’s a naked guy.’”

¦ Nakedness does leave one a bit vulnerable, as Travis Tingler, 32, found out on July 16 as he stood unclothed outside his girlfriend’s house in Manitowoc, Wis., shouting and threatening to hurt the people inside. When police arrived, they tried and failed to get Tingler back into his pants, so they handcuffed him. As they struggled to put him in the police car, Tingler picked up a lighter off the ground, and a probe from an officer’s stun gun struck the lighter, igniting Tingler’s chest and beard hairs. An officer was able to pat the fire out.

¦ Nudity, like everything else, is more fun when you can share it with friends. Or so it appeared to drivers along route A66 in Workington, Cumbria, in England, who spied four “shame-faced” men walking along the road wearing nothing but sneakers on July 30. The four “protected their modesty with cupped hands” and appeared to be walking quickly, according to Kathryn Lynn, 50, who drove by with her husband and daughter and snapped a photo of the odd group. “It was a bit of a shock to see,” she said.

The continuing crisis

Out of eight candidates for Detroit mayor in the Aug. 8 primary, half were convicted felons, the Detroit N ews reported. Three women and one man have convictions including gun crimes and assault with intent to commit murder. “Black marks on your record show you have lived a little and have overcome some challenges,” opined political consultant Greg Bowens. Michigan law allows convicted felons to vote and run for office unless they are currently incarcerated, or if their offenses are fraud-related or constitute a breach of public trust. None of the felons advanced to the general election.


In Green Bay, Wis., the Spartans of Vincent T. Lombardi Middle School won’t be playing football this year because of a lack of coaches. Jim Van Abel, principal of the school named after the revered coach of the Green Bay Packers, told parents in a letter that the district had been advertising for coaching positions since April, to no avail. Student Alex Coniff said last year about 55 students played on the school’s two football teams. (Interestingly, the district was also unable to provide a representative to be interviewed for the story.)

The job of the researcher

Sexing certain species of turtles used to be an invasive process, sometimes requiring surgery on the little guy or gal. But Donald McKnight, a Ph.D. student at James Cook University in Queensland, Australia, has perfected a method that speeds up the process — and presumably pleases the shelled reptile. McKnight uses a vibrator to stimulate the underside of the turtle, which causes a male to “reveal himself,” sometimes in as little as 4 seconds. McKnight did his research in Oklahoma on threatened western chicken turtles.

Readers’ choice

Dilworth, Minn., police officer Brad Browning suffered a bout of bad luck on Aug. 2 after he pulled over a car with a burned-out headlight. The driver, Stephen Hietala, 27, of Perham, had a warrant out for his arrest. When officers tried to handcuff Hietala, he resisted, prompting one officer to fire his Taser, which missed Heitala and hit Officer Browning instead. Hietala took off running, with Browning chasing on foot. Soon a sheriff’s deputy arrived with a police dog, but as Browning cornered Hietala in an alley, the dog bit Browning instead of the criminal. Officers finally arrested Hietala for fleeing a police officer and drug possession.

Bright idea

In Munich, Germany, Benjamin David has found a unique way to drown his commuting sorrows. He swims to work. “When I was on my bike, I would yell at cars,” David said. “When I was on foot, I would yell at cyclists. ... Just a few metres to the side of (the road) is the (Isar) river, and if you just swim down that, it’s completely relaxed and refreshing.” David stores his work clothes, laptop and mobile phone in a waterproof bag, and the river’s current sometimes allows him to float along his 1.2-mile route and enjoy the scenery — including bystanders on bridges. ¦

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