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Life is made up of our stories. They probably aren't as amusing as these.


Not one of the actual protected ants.

GERMANS BANNED FROM KILLING ANTS
(Ananova) - Germany has introduced new laws making it illegal to kill ants and appointed 85 ant protection officers to protect the insects. Homeowners and gardeners who attempt to destroy an anthill or nest will face hefty fines if caught. They must now apply for a permit from their local forestry office to have the ants carefully moved to local woods. "People with an ant hill in their garden must not resort to the use of poison," said ant protection officer Dieter Kraemer. "This is a violation of federal nature protection laws and punishable with fines." He added that ants were highly valued by German foresters for eating insects that attack trees. A high ant population can prevent costly and environmentally unfriendly woodland spraying aimed at pests such as the Nun moth.

BODY PART FOUND AT KINGMAN WASTEWATER PLANT
(Arizona, Arizona Republic) - A human body part has been found at a wastewater treatment plant outside of Kingman, spurring an investigation by Mohave County authorities. Detectives were called to the plant after Kingman workers found a penis in a water filter, authorities said. Both the Mohave County Sheriff's Office and Kingman Police Department are investigating, said Jarrod Lyman, a sheriff's spokesman. "We don't have any leads at this point," Lyman said. "We are investigating all possibilities," including foul play. The discovery was made at the Hilltop Wastewater Treatment Facility, he said.

PETA URGES HAMBURG TO CHANGE NAME
(New York) - A national animal rights group has offered Hamburg officials $15,000 to change the town's name to Veggieburg. "The town's name conjures up visions of unhealthy patties of ground-up dead cows," said Joe Haptas, spokesman for PETA, in a letter faxed to Hamburg Supervisor Patrick Hoak. PETA offered to supply area schools with $15,000 worth of non-meat patties for the name change. "Our offer is serious as a heart attack," Haptas said. Hoak immediately declined. "With all due respect, I think it's a delicacy in our community," he said about hamburgers. "We're proud of our name and proud of our heritage." In 1996, PETA proposed that the Hudson Valley town of Fishkill change its centuries-old name to Fishsave, since the group believed the name conjured up violent imagery of dead fish.

MAN SAYS HE SHOT NEIGHBOR FOR MOWING LAWN TOO OFTEN
(New York) - An upstate New York man has pleaded guilty to shooting a neighbor he thought mowed his lawn too often. The shooting happened just outside Elmira, New York. Kevin French shot the neighbor in the head with an air rifle as the man drove his riding mower. Prosecutors said the two men had a strained relationship for months before the shooting. French's guilty plea came on the second day of jury selection for his trial on a charge of attempted murder. In exchange, French will be sentenced to up to five years in prison. He faced up to 25 years for the original charge.

JUDGE LECTURES COUPLE ON RESTAURANT ANTICS
(Ohio) - A 70-year-old man and 60-year-old woman who had pleaded no contest and were found guilty on public indecency charges for sexual acts performed in a booth at a fast food restaurant were sentenced in New Philadelphia Municipal Court. Judge Mary Wade Space suspended 30-day jail terms and placed both on probation for a year. Both are to undergo any recommended counseling and pay $328 each in fines and court costs. They are married, but not to each other. The couple was arrested by New Philadelphia police after Hardee's employees and customers complained. There was evidence that it was not the first time something similar had happened. Space said she wondered why the couple chose a public restaurant to engage in the behavior. “I don’t have any answer for that,” the man replied. Space said she was disturbed because the restaurant is frequented by families with children, and because teenagers work there. Both defendants apologized for their actions to the court and expressed remorse.

TASTE THE WHIP YOU FLABBY SLAVE
(New York, Reuters) - Students at "Slavercise," a class in New York combining sadomasochism and exercise, get a physical workout by "submitting" to the orders and whims of a dominatrix named Mistress Victoria. She orders the class around with a riding crop, dangerously pointed stiletto heels and, naturally, a dominating manner. "If you don't keep up, you get punished," she warned her students at a recent class, which she oversaw with a non-stop string of insults and orders. "I don't want to hear any whimpering. You're here to suffer. I expect complete obedience, or I'll give you a good spanking. Do what I tell you to do. I don't care if it hurts." Clad in face masks, dog collars, rubber suits and other paraphernalia, Mistress Victoria's students run through the exercise regimen, knowing any slacking off will bring her wrath down upon them. "Anybody is going to pay more attention to their fitness instructor if she's got a riding crop in her hand and is wearing leather and stilettos," she said.

COLORFUL ACRONYM FORCES IRAQ ARMY NAME CHANGE
U.S. authorities in Iraq have been forced to change the name of the planned Iraqi armed forces, after learning that the original title they came up with created an unfortunate acronym in Arabic. The planned force was originally entitled the New Iraqi Corps, whose initials in Arabic produce a colorful synonym for fornication. "I am told reliably but unanimously that that acronym is not a nice word in Arabic," a senior official from the Coalition Provisional Authority said. "Therefore we had to come up with another word." The force is to be known as the New Iraqi Army.

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Man Killed for Singing Sinatra
Off-Key

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MAN KILLED FOR SINGING SINATRA OFF-KEY
A 25-year-old Filipino man has been stabbed dead for singing a Frank Sinatra classic out of tune during a birthday party. Police officer Noel Albis said the victim, Casimiro Lagugad, was asked to sing Sinatra's popular song My Way during the party in the Manila suburban city of Caloocan in the Philippines. "Witnesses said the suspect, Julio Tugas, 48, one of the guests and a neighbor of the victim, got irked because Lagugad was singing out of tune," Officer Albis said. "Tugas suddenly attacked the victim and stabbed him in the neck," he added. Guests rushed Lagugad to the hospital, but he died while being treated. Tugas later surrendered to village security officials, who turned him over to authorities.

DAD CHARGED FOR TAKING BABY TO HOOTERS
(Maryland, AP) - A Maryland dad is in trouble with the law. Dennis Mallik faces criminal charges for allegedly taking his three-month-old son with him to a Hooters. Police say they got a call from the Hooters manager, saying a drunk guy was trying to order a drink with a baby in his arms. The manager refused to serve any booze to the man. Police say they found Mallik and his baby in the restaurant parking lot. The infant was taken into protective custody and later released to a family member. Mallik has been charged with contributing to the delinquency of a child and endangering a baby while intoxicated.

STUDY SHOWS CHERNOBYL WORMS HAVE MORE SEX
(Agence France-Presse) - The Chernobyl nuclear disaster has radically changed the lives of worms in the region, which now enjoy more sex, Ukrainian scientists have said. Scientists in Sebastopol have compared the way worms reproduce around Chernobyl, where radioactivity levels in the soil are 100 times higher than normal, with their cousins elsewhere. Nearly a quarter of irradiated worms were seeking out partners to reproduce sexually rather than asexually, against five per cent in less-affected areas, their research showed. The team concluded that sexual reproduction allowed the worms to transmit their most radioactivity-resistant genes to their offspring, giving them the best chance of adapting to the environment.

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