Weirdness  - 11Oct96
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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Fri, 1 Nov 96 15:40:45 -0800
Subject: Weirdness  - 11Oct96
Excerpted-from: WEIRDNUZ.453 (News of the Weird, October 11, 1996)
by Chuck Shepherd
* Dangerous Minds: In the same week in September, Southwest Elementary
School in Lexington, N. C., suspended a six-year-old boy for kissing a girl
on the cheek ("sexual harassment") and the New York Supreme Court disallowed
the suspension of a 15- year-old boy who was carrying a loaded gun at
William Howard Taft High School in the Bronx.
* In August, the Copenhagen (Denmark) Zoo added an exhibit to its primate
collection, amidst the baboons and chimpanzees: a Homo sapiens couple who
will go about their daily business in a Plexiglas-walled natural habitat
consisting of kitchen, living room, bedroom, and workshop, as well as a
computer, television, telephone, stereo, and fax machine. Said a Zoo
official, "We are all . . . monkeys in a way, but some people find that hard
* The Lazarus Society in Cologne, Germany, recently released a "Confession
by Computer" CD, with a menu of the 200 most- frequent sins and a separate
program to allow the particularly iniquitous to customize the sins to which
they will confess. Appropriate penances are prescribed, as well as a link
to priests via the Internet. The German Conference of Bishops quickly
denounced the disk. And in June, Rev. David E. Courter of the Independent
Catholic Church International told an Associated Press reporter he would
soon say Mass online and allow people to take Communion via computer by
placing unleavened bread in front of their monitors.
* In April, Eastern Orthodox monks in the former Soviet republic of Moldova
signed a contract with the Exiton corporation, one of the leading builders
of the severely-depressed Moldovan economy. Under the contract, Exiton
would help support a monastery and assist the monks in recovering lost
icons, and the monks would pray for Exiton's bottom line.
* Completely separate police investigations began in August in Lake Helen,
Fla., and Woburn, Mass., after parents complained that their children had
been baptized without permission at local churches (Central Fellowship
Baptist in Florida and Anchor Baptist in Massachusetts). Anchor allegedly
lured housing- project kids with a promise of pizza, which the kids say they
* Recently, the All-Merciful Saviour Russian Orthodox Monastery realized it
needed to raise money through an entrepreneurial venture. Since the order
is located on Vashon Island near Seattle, Wash., it decided to make and
market four blends of gourmet coffee, at $20-$30 a pound, including its
signature blend, Abbot's Choice.
* In May, Karen Watson, 20, gave birth to a baby boy in Albany, Ore., which
she said took her completely by surprise, though she said she had been
suffering from anemia. Of course, this was not the first case of a woman's
unexpectedly giving birth, but Watson is a pre-med biology major at the
University of California, Davis, with plans to go into family practice.
* In September, a man was crushed to death on a stairway at the Sammis Real
Estate and Insurance office in Huntington, N. Y., in the process of stealing
the office's 600-pound safe; he apparently violated the cardinal rule of
stairway-safe-hauling by standing on a step lower than the one the safe is
on. (And, it turned out the safe was empty.)
Copyright 1996, Universal Press Syndicate. All rights reserved.
No commercial use may be made of the material or of the name
News of the Weird.
© 1996 Peter Langston