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fox.jpg (6701 bytes)FOX STEALS GOLF BALLS, NO HELP FROM RULE BOOK
(Stockholm, Reuters) - A fox snapped up two balls hit from the seventh tee onto the fairway by players in a tournament at Gronhogen golf course on the island of Oland off Sweden's southeastern coast, TT news agency said. The players saw the fox run off into nearby woods and when tournament director Bo Rodensjo consulted the rulebook he found no guidance about how to proceed. He chose to allow the players to drop new balls near where they had stopped. The fox, hoarding food for the winter, had apparently mistaken the golf balls for bird eggs.

MAN REFUSES TO FINISH POOL SEX UNTIL HE PROVIDES SATISFACTION
An Italian couple have been arrested after refusing to stop having sex in a public swimming pool. They were caught by a caretaker, but the man told him he would continue until the woman reached orgasm. The caretaker called the police and officers arrested both the bathers at the Milan pool. They have been charge with indecent behavior and are still in custody, waiting to appear before a local tribunal judge. Il Nouvo Web site reports the pair had apparently just met at the pool. Their names have not been revealed. The caretaker, who only gave his name as Giacomo, said, "Other customers called and asked me to intervene when these two started moaning heavily. The woman stood topless in the water with her legs wide open and he was grabbing her from behind; all of this in front of several other customers. I asked the man to stop, but he said he wouldn't stop before he'd finished." The caretaker alerted the police who arrested the two on the spot and charged them with indecent behavior. They are currently in custody, awaiting to be sentenced by the local tribunal's judge.

FRENCH MAYOR BANS RESIDENTS FROM DYING
France (Reuters) - The mayor of a French Mediterranean town, faced with a cemetery "full to bursting," has banned local residents from dying until he can find somewhere else to bury them. Gil Bernardi, mayor of Le Lavandou on the coast 15 miles west of Saint Tropez, introduced the ban after a court rejected his plans to build a cemetery in a tranquil setting by the sea. Bernardi said most locals had obeyed the edict so far, but he was desperately trying to find a resting place for a homeless man who had recently passed away in the town. "Initially, the decree has been remarkably well followed," the mayor said. Bernardi has appealed against the ruling preventing the seaside cemetery being built, saying it would be the best final resting place for his townsfolk. "What people want here, because it's a local tradition, is their own little personal plot of land, their burial spot, not an impersonal pigeonhole," he said.

WOMAN NAMES HER BABY AFTER SAUERKRAUT
Wisconsin (Wireless Flash) - A mother has named her newborn after her favorite brand of sauerkraut, and it's not a publicity stunt. Brenda Lashley is the current two-time Women's World Champion Sauerkraut Eater in a contest held by Frank's Quality Kraut. So, naturally, when Lashley recently gave birth to her six-pound baby boy she named him Edward Allen Frank in honor of the kraut. "This whole thing has just become so big. Of course I had to name him Frank," Brenda said from her hospital bed after giving birth. It may seem like Lashley has kraut for brains, especially since the company didn't ask her to name her son Frank. Nonetheless, the sauerkraut maker is sweet on the idea and decided to spring for a $500 savings bond for Lashley's son.

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Man Accused of Mailing Feces, Summons Back to Court
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MAN ACCUSED OF MAILING FECES, SUMMONS BACK TO COURT
(Connecticut) - A Westport man has been accused of using a jury summons as toilet paper and sending it back to the Connecticut Judicial Department. Christopher Gurahian, 38, allegedly smeared excrement on the jury summons, wrote "stop wasting paper" on it, and mailed it back to the state Judicial Department, state police said. After an employee of the Office of Jury Administration in Wethersfield opened the envelope, she informed her supervisor, who called state police. Gurahian turned himself in on charges of second-degree harassment and breach of peace, both misdemeanors. State police said the soiled summons was not tested to see if the excrement was of human or animal origin. Gurahian was released $2,500 bail.

MAN ROBS PHARMACY, SERVES TIME, ROBS IT AGAIN 20 YEARS LATER
(Illinois) - Once wasn't enough for Richard Crosno. Madison County Circuit Judge Charles V. Romani recently sentenced the 42-year-old Wood River man to 12 years in prison for robbing the same pharmacy he hit 20 years ago. Crosno went to prison for that one, too. Vicki Myers, 51, was working each time Crosno robbed the Medicine Shoppe in Wood River. She wasn't satisfied to hear Crosno could be paroled after six years. "In six years, I won't be retired yet," said Myers, who has worked as a technician at the pharmacy for 22 years. Prosecutors said Crosno robbed the store of a delivery van, $160 and prescription painkillers by flashing a pellet gun he made to look like a sawed-off shotgun. Crosno pleaded guilty to a charge of aggravated robbery. Myers and her 22-year-old co-worker Niki Moehn said the incident scared them. "I was absolutely terrified," Moehn said. "I had never been close to a gun at all. I still feel apprehensive." Romani pointed to Crosno's eight previous felony convictions and three stints in the Illinois Department of Corrections as the reason for the near-maximum sentence. Crosno was sentenced to six years in prison for armed robbery after he and two accomplices robbed the pharmacy in 1982 at its previous location.

AUSTRALIANS FEEL THE FORCE
(Australia) - More than 70,000 fans of the Star Wars movies have upset Australia's statistics agency by identifying their religion as "Jedi" during last year's national census. The Australian Bureau of Statistics said 0.37 percent of the nation's population of 19 million, or 70,509 people, had written "Jedi" or a related response to an optional question about their faith when the head count was taken recently. Jedi is a mystical faith followed by some of the central characters in the Star Wars films. The prank began early last year when Star Wars fans circulated an e-mail across Australia saying the government would be forced to recognize Jedi as an official religion if at least 10,000 people named it on the census. When made aware of the campaign, the statistics agency announced that respondents faced a fine of $540 if they were found to have given false information. In a statement its Internet site, the agency did not say if it would try to fine the Jedi faithful. But it warned that the Australian public ultimately paid the price for census-related pranks. "The cost of wrong information is to the current and potential users of these services," the agency said. "If, for example, people of a particular religious affiliation do not provide the correct information, certain facilities might not be built that otherwise would be."

BEER FOR THE AFTERLIFE
A 72-year-old beer fanatic takes his own stash to the grave. The man, who claims that he has spent the last 30 years drinking nothing but beer, doesn't want to go to his grave without his bottle. Yugoslavian Slobodan Ristivojevic started his beer-drinking marathon in 1972, and has since knocked back 100,000 bottles. He says he couldn't imagine drinking water again, and states it may even make him collapse. "There is no drink that refreshes like beer. I used to drink up to 20 bottles a day but nowadays it's only about six a day. I'm not an alcoholic, but I simply can't drink anything else but beer. If I were to drink a glass of water right now I think I'd just collapse on the floor," he told Serbian daily Glas Javnosti. Speaking of the headstone he added, "One beer is for me and another one for my loving wife Slavka. She drinks water too but likes beer and when we die I want to be sure we'll have beer there at the cemetery as well."

WELSH RUGBY REFEREES SEE THE JOKE
(Wales, Reuters) - Welsh rugby referees have become an official joke after it was announced that their new sponsors were the nation's largest chain of opticians. Placards carrying the message "Get your blinking eyes tested, ref!" will be distributed by Specsavers to fans at matches in the coming season, the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) said. Clive Norling, the WRU's Director of Referees, welcomed the four-year deal, saying it should help to improve the traditionally tense relationship between referee and Welsh rugby follower. "Like all referees, I was subjected to humorous comments from the terraces on match days such as 'open your eyes ref, you're missing a great game,'" said Norling in a statement. "This agreement therefore is not just a major financial boost but it is also hoped that it will assist in bringing back to the terraces some traditional humor. It is hoped that the partnership with Specsavers will encourage a swift return of the more humorous comments aimed at referees, replacing the foul personal abuse that, sadly, is nowadays hurled at match officials."

STUPID THIEF'S BAIL BUNGLE
(England) A thief who tried to hide his identity from the police "stupidly" gave the name of an offender with a record that landed him in custody, a court heard. Daniel Wilson, 21, was not bailed by Derby police after he was caught shoplifting at Asda in Spondon on July 8 because "his record" showed that he had failed to surrender to bail on five occasions. Christine Bacon, prosecuting, told Derby Crown Court yesterday that Wilson gave a false name to police when arrested after a store detective saw him stealing bottles of spirits. He admitted theft before Derby magistrates the next day and was remanded again to await sentence under the false name. But his true identity came to light when fingerprints at the scene matched his own. John Edwards, mitigating, said, "This was a performance of crass stupidity. "At least most defendants have the wherewithal of giving a name which gives them a chance of bail." Wilson, of Upper Temple Walk, Beaumont Leys, Leicester, who admitted trying to pervert the course of justice and theft, was jailed for eight months.

TESTY BUREAUCRAT DENIES BALLSY SCULPTOR
(California, Wireless Flash) - The U.S. government is making a sculptor in Grass Valley, California, very testy—they won't let him trademark his balls. Jeff Tritel makes a line of scrotum-shaped sculptures called "American Brass Balls" that he says are meant to be patriotic, not pornographic. However, when Tritel tried to trademark his brass ball busts with the U.S. government, a trademark attorney denied him because the logo was deemed to "comprise immoral or scandalous matter." Tritel says the officials are nuts and can't believe the same office that allows the Hooters logo denied his claim. He's confident he can convince the legal Eagles that his brass balls don't communicate sex but "an intrinsically American attitude."

ATTACKING DONKEY LEAVES FARMER WITHOUT HAND
(Kirghizia) A farmer in the former Soviet republic of Kirghizia has had his hand amputated after he tried to stop two donkeys having sex. The man, from the Chiusk region, was bitten as he tried to intervene. He was trying to prevent his female donkey from copulating with a neighbor's donkey. But his donkey attacked him when he tried to stop them. He was taken to hospital where his hand so badly damaged that doctors had to amputate it.

MAN'S VISIT TO HIS FUTURE GRAVE KILLS HIM
(Sicily, Reuters) - Giovanni Greco sent himself, literally, to an early grave. Greco, 63, was so keen that his future mausoleum would be a perfect fit that he liked to visit it ensure the builders were making it just right. But his latest visit proved to be his last. According to local media reports, Greco was making his regular trip to the construction site in the small cemetery in his hometown of Lascari at the weekend. He climbed a ladder to get a better view of the top of the mausoleum when he slipped, hit his head on a marble step, and fell into his own tomb.

PITCH DARK BAR OPENS FOR BLIND DATES
(Berlin, Reuters) - Diners at Berlin's newest restaurant cannot see what they are eating and have to be guided to their table by blind waiters because the bar is pitch black. The restaurant, which recently opened, aims to make guests concentrate on senses other than sight. Holding on to one another, the first visitors followed waiter Roland Zimmermann, 33, into the dining room. Although the Ph.D. student has been blind since childhood, he is the only one able to point out chairs, cutlery and drinks. "I'm putting your plate right in front of you," Zimmermann said. "I can't find my mouth," one voice replied out of the dark. "I wonder what this dish is—lasagna? Or some casserole?" another invisible guest said. In the "unsicht-Bar," which means invisible in German, diners cannot choose complete dishes from the menu but can only indicate whether they would like a fish, meat or vegetarian option. "We want people to have an extraordinary experience of tasting, feeling and smelling," said Manfred Scharbach, head of the organization for blind and sight-restricted people, that is running the bar. "People are surprised that their tongues and taste senses are taking over and are sending signals, which their eyes would normally have sent," he added. Of the 30 staff, 22 are blind. An average meal lasts about three hours and the waiters are always around to help, Scharnbach said. And at the end of the night, they will even reveal what customers have actually been eating.

MAN ARRAIGNED IN CASE OF CASTRATION GONE WRONG
A Taiwanese national living in Oak Park was arraigned on charges related to a voluntary castration he performed on a Birmingham man. Shuo-Shan Wang, 29, was arraigned in Oak Park District Court on one count of practicing medicine without a license and one count of unlawfully dispensing a prescription drug. Oakland County prosecutors said the 48-year-old Birmingham man, whose identity hasn't been released by police, contacted the would-be surgeon through the Internet. Wang told police he had performed castrations on other men in Michigan and in his former home in Australia. Both men said they were eating after the procedure, which had been performed on Wang's kitchen table, when the castrated man began to bleed after laughing. The bleeding couldn't be stopped. Prosecutors said a neighbor notified authorities, who found the man sitting in blood-soaked jeans on a curb on Northfield Street. Police later found two testicles in a container in Wang's refrigerator. Psychiatry experts say such incidents are rare, but some men want to be castrated for erotic reasons. Oakland County Deputy Prosecutor Jim Halushka stated that Wang "doesn't have a license. He's not equipped to handle a problem when it arises," he said.

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Man Accused in Wedgie Case
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MAN ACCUSED IN WEDGIE CASE
(Pennsylvania, AP) - A man accused of trying to kill a friend who gave him a "wedgie" will stand trial on an attempted murder charge, a judge ruled. Daniel Strouss, 19, was attending a Phish concert last year when Eric Kassoway sneaked up behind him and yanked up his underwear, according to testimony. Strouss, of Richboro, held a grudge for months before shooting Kassoway in June, authorities said. On the night of the shooting, Strouss drove to Kassoway's home and waited until Kassoway came home, then shot him in the arm and leg, authorities said. Kassoway nearly died from loss of blood. Strouss' attorney, Al Cepparulo, said he did not dispute the prosecution's version of events. "This is a tragedy for the victim. All I can say is my client is going through therapy," he said last week.

EPILEPTIC ORDERED TO PAY $5,400 FOR CONTORTED FACE
(Scotland) - A man who suffers from epilepsy has been ordered to pay compensation to a student who was upset by his contorted face during a seizure. In a case described by an epilepsy charity as "like something you would see on the Ally McBeal show," Edwin Young has been told to pay $5,400 to Yvonne Rennie for the mild post-traumatic stress she suffered. Rennie sued after Young suffered an epileptic fit while driving four years ago and crashed into her car at traffic lights in Perth. In a written judgment, Sheriff Michael Fletcher, at Perth sheriff court, accepted that she was upset by the look on Young's face. He said, "The defendant suffered an epileptic fit and lost control of his vehicle. As a result of the fit, his face was contorted and this led the plaintiff to believe he was having a heart attack and was dying. Passers-by removed the defendant from his car and placed him on the pavement to render him assistance. The sight of the defendant lying on the pavement upset the plaintiff." The sheriff compensation for Rennie's slight injuries and additional compensation for the fear of driving she developed. Epilepsy Action Scotland described the case as "bizarre."

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