Fun_People Archive
8 Jan
WEIRDNUZ.306 (News of the Weird, December 17, 1993)

Date: Sat,  8 Jan 94 16:06:04 PST
To: Fun_People
Subject: WEIRDNUZ.306 (News of the Weird, December 17, 1993)

 From: Keith Bostic
 From: WEIRDNUZ.306 (News of the Weird, December 17, 1993)
 by Chuck Shepherd

* The Lillehammer Olympic Organizing Committee in Norway, site of the
1994 Winter Games, told visiting dignitaries in November that its
employees are training with "smile holders" in order not to look dour
during the Games.  A smile holder is a device that fits on the wearer's
head, with clips that grasp the corners of the wearer's mouth; it can
be adjusted, by pulling a strap, to go from slight grin to gleeful
smile. [Washington Post, 11-27-93]

Planet Earth in Decline

* Researchers at the Center of Atmospheric Sciences at the National
Autonomous University of Mexico reported in May that nearly five million
inhabitants of Mexico City and suburbs are forced to defecate outdoors
and that more than 60% of Mexico City residents show signs of amoebic
dysentery. [The News of Mexico City, 6-2-93]

* In November, officials at the Arkansas-Oklahoma State Fair were
investigating a charge that a prize-winning lamb was beaten along the
back and loins so that its body would swell and thus be firmer to the
touch, to improve its chances of winning a Junior Livestock Auction
judging contest. [Arkansas Democrat-Gazette-AP, Nov93]

* In November, the instructor in a College of New Caledonia (Prince
George, British Columbia) sociology course assigned male students the
project of plotting and describing the "perfect rape," to test their
understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of criminal
investigations.  The instructor withdrew the assignment when students
complained. [Edmonton Journal-Prince George Citizen, 11-20-93]

* The Aspen (Colo.) City Council and local county commissioners admitted
in November that the county requirement that housing be available in
all income ranges was not being met.  Housing is available for the rich
and the poor, but not much exists for those with incomes around $100,000
a year. [Rocky Mountain News-AP, 11-14-93]

* In July, Eric Vogt, the manager of a closed facility at the former
Hanford (Wash.) Nuclear Reservation, told reporters that over 27 tons
of plutonium remains on the site in a tin-sided building, including over
two tons contained in sludge and old cleaning rags.  (Although plutonium
is not a serious radiation hazard, it decays into an element, americium
241, that is.) [Oregonian, Jul93]

* A TV game show in the Netherlands, "A Matter of Life and Death,"
allows the studio audience to vote for which of two guest patients is
worthier of treatment under the country's rationed health care system.
Producers announce that only doctors make the real decisions, but
patients hope that a favorable audience reaction will persuade health
authorities.  On a recent show, reported by Reuters news service, two
cancer patients vied to see which is more deserving of an expensive
drug. [Wall Street Journal-Reuters, 10-30-93]

Tacky, Tacky

* In November a company called the National Historical Mint in Boca
Raton, Fla., hired Earl Ruby (brother of Lee Harvey Oswald's killer) to
fire 100 bullets from his brother's gun into a drum of water.  The
bullets will be mounted on plaques commemorating the death of John F.
Kennedy and sold for around $2,500 each. [Los Angeles Times, 11-22-93]

* The University of Tennessee Daily Beacon reported in March on a
disturbance at the C. E. Brehm Animal Sciences building in which one
senior secretary accused another of assault.  According to the paper,
one of the women had grabbed the other's time sheet after a dispute,
and in an ensuing struggle, the abductor "made facial gestures at [the
woman], stuck her tongue out at her, and called her a liar," and
allegedly followed that up with a shove. [The Daily Beacon, 3-10-93]

The Weirdo-American Community

* The Los Angeles Times reported in September on Henry Schiff, 39, who
had his name legally changed several years ago to Henry Lizardlover
Seven in tribute to the 30 companion exotic lizards he keeps in his
one-bedroom apartment and around which he centers his life.  Henry is
single and sleeps alone on a mattress on the floor but says he recently
had a girlfriend until he became weary of her insisting on sharing her
bed with a large iguana she owned. [Columbia Missourian-Los Angeles
Times, 10-10-93]

Least Competent Criminals

* Two gunmen who robbed a branch of the San Diego Trust & Savings Bank
in San Diego, Calif., in November were caught when an elderly motorist
rammed the robbers' getaway car.  Police had photographs of the robbers,
anyway, because they had donned their ski masks outside the bank right
in front of the ATM camera. [Los Angeles Times, 11-30-93]

Copyright 1993, Universal Press Syndicate.  All rights
reserved.  Released for the personal use of readers. 
No commercial use may be made of the material or of the
name News of the Weird.

[=] © 1994 Peter Langston []