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NAMES IN THE NEWS Wednesday, October 15
One of the three suspects in an August arrest for making fraudulent purchases at a Jupiter, Florida, shop: Ms. Cherries Waffles Tennis, 19. The president of the Alabama Public Service Commission (who invoked prayer in July as the most effective way to fight federal restrictions on coal-fired power plants): Ms. Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh. The investigator for the Ohio state auditor’s office who was ordered by his supervisor in July to end a romantic relationship with another government official: Jim Longerbone.
IF I WERE KING Wednesday, October 15
Ontario’s top court rejected Bryan Teskey’s complaint in August over how Roman Catholics continue to be discriminated against by the laws of British royal succession. Even though Ontario (along with many Commonwealth countries) recently removed some aspects of bias (ending the ban on the royal family’s marrying Catholics), Teskey pointed out that Canadian Catholics still don’t have a fair shot at becoming king or queen (though Teskey did not claim that he, personally, had been a candidate).
TO THE MOON, ALICE! Wednesday, October 15
Among the suggestions of the Brisbane, Australia, company Pets Eternal for honoring a deceased pet (made to a reporter in September): keeping a whisker or tooth or lock of hair, or having the remains made into jewelry or mixed with ink to make a tattoo. Overlooked was a new project by the Houston space-flight company Celestis, known for blasting human ashes into orbit (most famously those of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry). Celestis, working with a California company, will soon offer to shoot pets’ remains into orbit ($995) or perhaps even to the moon ($12,000).
CLEARANCE, CLARENCE Wednesday, October 15
In Londonderry, Northern Ireland, in August, Kevin Clarence, 20, was arrested for an inept attempt to rob a supermarket. He entered the store, and only then, according to witnesses, put a plastic garbage bag over his head and decided to wait in line for his opportunity to address a cashier. He quickly got tired of waiting and said, “I’ll be back,” but was caught by police minutes after leaving the store.
BIONIC SHOES Wednesday, October 15
Police in Japan’s Kyoto Prefecture raided a shoe manufacturer in July and commandeered a list of about 1,500 purchasers of the company’s signature “tosatsu shoes” — shoes with built-in cameras. Investigators have begun visiting the purchasers at home to ask them to hand in the shoes (but, out of fairness, said they wouldn’t cause trouble for customers who could produce a legitimate reason for needing to take photographs and video by pointing the shoe at something).
CLUES AT THE SCENE Wednesday, October 8
Alfred J. Shropshire III was charged in June with burglarizing a home in Lakewood, Washington, identified by his having accidentally dropped at the scene a plaque from a local Mazda dealer naming Alfred J. Shropshire III Salesperson of the Month.
SIZE MATTERS (SOMETIMES) Wednesday, October 8
A court in Leer, Germany, ordered a medical examination of the manhood of Herbert O., 54, to help decide a criminal charge of exhibitionism. The man’s wife testified Herbert’s organ is “too short to hang out of [his] trousers,” as claimed by the victim of the flashing. The judge asked a local health official to make an exact measurement.
WHAT’S THE MAGIC WORD? Wednesday, October 8
A September report from Rhone, France, tells of a 33-year-old man sentenced to prison for 10 months for harassing his ex-girlfriend with 21,807 phone calls and texts over the 10 months following the split (a daily average of 73). The man insisted he only wanted the woman to say thanks for carpentry work he’d done on her apartment.
TAKE A LOAD OFF Wednesday, October 8
University of Arizona Medical Center surgeons removed a 47-pound tumor from a woman’s stomach in April — not even close to being the largest ever mentioned here, but likely the only such large tumor held in the arms of a member of the surgical team, as pictured in a post-op photo.
WHO YOU CALLIN’ SHRIMP? Wednesday, October 8
Buddhists believe in the wholesale “mercy release” of living creatures, with smaller and less consequential animals making even stronger statements of reverence, according to a July New York Times story from Yushu, China, describing the freeing of river shrimp the size of a fingernail clipping.
 
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