Fun_People Archive
13 Dec
Weirdnesses [355] - 25 Nov 1994

Date: Tue, 13 Dec 94 12:27:21 PST
To: Fun_People
Subject: Weirdnesses [355] - 25 Nov 1994

From: WEIRDNUZ.355 (News of the Weird, November 25, 1994)
by Chuck Shepherd

* In March, in Stinson Beach, Calif., as publicity for his
year-long campaign to collect enough brassieres to string across
the Grand Canyon, the "conceptual artist" Ronnie Nicolino, along
with 200 volunteers, created a two-mile-long sand sculpture
consisting of 21,000 size 34C breasts.  Nicolino denied he is
obsessed with breasts.  "In my case, it's not that serious," he
said.  "I can be detached enough to at least be an observer." [AP
wirecopy, 3-20-94]

* Among the specialized, small-market magazines recently appearing
in Japan is Combustible Garbage [Moeru Gomi], by artist Tetsuo
Ogawa, 22, consisting merely of a vinyl bag of garbage from his
and his friends' apartments.  He solicits people to let him clean
their rooms and periodically "publishes" the results. [Mainichi
Daily News, 7-24-94]

* The New York Times reported in August on the increased pressure
from Muslim mullahs in Iran to outlaw the satellite TV dishes that
bring in Western programing, which is more popular among many
people than the three religious channels available locally.  Among
the most popular shows is "Baywatch," quite an alternative in
Iran, where even a woman's ankle cannot be exposed.  Said one
businessman, "We are addicted to shows like 'Donahue.'  Today,
Donahue had on a guy who has an open relationship with his
girlfriend. . . .  We couldn't believe it.  We never hear or talk
about this kind of thing."  (Iran permitted "live" broadcasts of
World Cup soccer matches this year from the U.  S., but only after
deleting summer crowd scenes, which featured much female skin, and
substituting winter crowd scenes, in which spectators were bundled
up.) [New York Times, 8-21-94]

* In August, the government of the Malaysian state of Perlis
announced it would crack down on conservative female Muslim
physicians who use pencils or pens or long objects to examine male
patients.  Many Muslims believe it is a sin if a woman touches a
man other than her husband. [Sioux Falls Argus Leader, 8-12-94]

* In July in Portland, Maine, Judge Robert E. Crowley found a
39-year-old Afghan refugee guilty of sexual assault against his
2-year-old son.  A neighbor had seen the man kiss the boy's penis,
but according to the man's lawyer, and about a dozen Afghanis who
attended the trial, that is accepted, and common, in Afghan
culture as a show of affection.  Crowley said the statute calls
the action illegal even if not done for sexual pleasure. [Portland
Press Herald, 7-27-94]

* On a trip to New York in January to receive a prestigious
international sports award, Chinese running phenom Wang Junxia,
20, told reporters that her daily regimen consists of up to 22
miles of running and a diet that usually includes worms, extract
of caterpillar fungus, and the blood of soft-shell turtles.  Wang
has broken so many world records that some suspected she was using
illegal drugs, but tests have always turned up negative.  Her
coach, Ma Junren, insists her secret is the worm elixir, which he
now bottles and sells worldwide, with revenues of at least $1
million. [New York Times, 2-1-94]

* Since September 20, health authorities estimate that several
hundred people have died in India of pneumonic plague, which had
been absent from the country since 1966.  Still, many Hindus in
the country refused to kill rats, the most probable carrier of the
plague.  In Hindu mythology, the god Ganesh is accompanied by a
rat wherever he travels, and worshipers still make their offerings
on behalf of Ganesh and his little friend.  Hindus have been seen
taking rats from traps and merely releasing them away from their
homes, hoping they will not return.  In city parks in Calcutta,
rats are fed much as pigeons are fed in the U. S.  Said a retired
government official in New Delhi, "The time has come for people to
realize it is either us or the rat." [Northwest Florida Daily
News-AP, 9-30-94]

 Copyright 1994, Universal Press Syndicate.  Released for the
enjoyment of readers.  No commercial use may be made of the
material, or of the name News of the Weird, without permission.

[=] © 1994 Peter Langston []