Sunday, August 31, 2008

It's been a while, so here are 10 random songs

Since it's late and I'm not feeling creative enough to search for and subsequently make dumb jokes about any news of the stupid, let's see what my Windows Media Player will dish up...

1. Alphaville - "Forever Young"
2. David Bowie - "Heroes"
3. Pet Shop Boys -"Always on My Mind"
4. The Jesus and Mary Chain - "You Trip Me Up"
5. Blue States - "Season Song"
6. Echo & The Bunnymen - "The Cutter"
7. Bright Eyes - "Lover I Don't Have to Love"
8. They Might Be Giants - "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)"
9. The Drifters - "On Broadway"
10. New Order - "Touched By The Hand of God"

Friday, August 29, 2008


So, it turns out that God takes the Ninth (Eighth if you're Catholic or Lutheran) Commandment pretty seriously:
The man, who was identified as Xu, had borrowed 500 yuan (US$73.21) from a close friend surnamed Huang three years ago. Xu, who lived in Fuqing City, Fujian Province, later forgot all about it, according to a news Web portal in Fujian.

But Huang remembered and complained before other friends that Xu had taken money from him.

On Tuesday, Huang took a wooden rod and rushed to Xu's home asking him to return the money. Xu too confronted Huang with an iron bar and stood his ground.

Huang then told Xu that he should swear before god that he was not in his debt. Xu lifted the iron bar over his head and said if he owed Huang money, the god would punish him. Just then he was struck by lightning.
Of course, their notion of God may differ from the Judeo-Christian God, but still, I don't think it's a good idea in any culture to hold a metal rod over your head and tempt God to strike you down while telling a fib. At least not on a cloudy day, anyway.

(Via Fark, which notes that "God hates a Fuqing liar.")

Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to drive a train

Well, to be fair, I really don't know if this guy is fat, but the drunk and stupid stuff? Oh yeah:
Thomas Gracie, 40, was ordered to pay the fine by Edinburgh Sheriff Court after he admitted to breaking transport laws by being intoxicated while on duty, The Daily Record (Glasgow) reported Friday.

Prosecutor Tom Crosbie said Gracie's blood alcohol content had been more than three times the legal limit for driving at the time of the incident.

He said Gracie's drunken nap left him unable to unlock the passenger car doors when the train arrived at Waverley station Aug. 8.

"Shortly after 8.30 p.m., the train doors failed to open on arrival at Waverley and passengers were unable to get off," Crosbie said. "A cleaner attended at the conductor's cab and observed Gracie was asleep. He was unable to be awoken and the emergency release was activated to allow access to the cab."
The article goes on to mention that Gracie has admitted that he has a drinking problem (no, really?) and that he was fired because of the incident. That seems like the prudent course of action.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

What a brilliant idea!

I've heard of places where they publish photos of people caught patronizing prostitutes, but doing the same thing to shame jaywalkers?
Shanghai police will post photos and videos of jaywalkers in newspapers and on TV in a bid to shame them out of breaking traffic rules, local media reported on Thursday.

Offending pedestrians, moped riders and cyclists would be snapped at selected intersections and their images put in regular columns and on special television programs set up by police, the Shanghai Daily said.
Now, based on some information further down in the article, I don't think it's going to be a very effective program...
Jaywalking is a way of life in major Chinese cities, where crossing roads legally can be a hair-raising battle of nerves with oncoming cars disinclined to give way to pedestrians.

Traffic police recorded 7.78 million jaywalking violations at Shanghai intersections in the first eight months of 2008, the paper said.
So everybody in the city jaywalks on a regular basis, but they think they're going to shame people out of doing so by showing pictures of them doing this apparently not-very-shameful act (it's "a way of life," after all)in the newspaper? I don't really think they've thought this through very carefully.

The secret to beautiful skin is...what?

Look out Oxy, Stridex, and Proactiv, there's a new and effective skin care treatment out there:
A condom lubricant designed for sex workers and gay men has become a popular acne cure among female Cambodians, women in the capital and local media said Thursday.

Number One Plus, a water-based lubricant produced by health organisation Population Services International (PSI), is an excellent cure for acne, 29-year-old vendor Tep Kemyoeurn told AFP.

"After I used it for three days, all of my acne dried up and went away," she said. "Many people believe in it," she added.

Khen Vanny, 29, from Phnom Penh, told AFP that women of all ages have taken to using the lubricant to get rid of spots.

"It is very effective. Some people don't believe in it but people who do really get a good result," she said, adding: "My youngest sister and my aunt use it too."
What I want to know is, how in the world did anybody figure out that the lube from these particular condoms works on your face? Okay, scratch that. I really don't want to know.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Science of the 'nads

If you're looking to become a dad and you're also in the market for a new car, you might not want to go with the options package that includes heated seats:
Men who enjoy warming their bottom on a heated car seat should beware, for they may also be frying their chances of fatherhood, New Scientist reports in its latest issue.

Sperm production is best when the temperature of the scrotum is one or two degrees Celsius (1.8-3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) below the core body temperature of 37 C (99 F).

Testicle-testing German researchers fitted sensors to the scrotums of 30 healthy men who then sat on a heated car seat for 90 minutes.

After one hour, the average scrotal temperature had risen to 37.3 C (99.5 F), and in one volunteer reached a whopping 39.7 C (103 F).

By comparison, men who sat on unheated car seats reached an average scrotal temperature of only 36.7 C (98 F).

The study, led by Andreas Jung at the University of Giessen, did not verify the volunteer's sperm count or sperm mobility, but the researchers fear that only a slight increase in temperature is enough to damage the sperm-production process, the British weekly says.
I know that somebody has to do these studies to advance medical knowledge about fertility issues, but I'm glad it's not me. I mean, I've got better things to do with my time than measuring the internal temperatures of a bunch of guys' ballsacks. Okay, so that's a lie. I don't really have better things to do with my time, but I'm still happy to leave that particular task to someone else.

Compare and contrast

With commodity prices going up all over the globe, things are tough all over. They're just tougher in some places than they are in others. Let's look at the latest crisis in Italy first:
"Pizzaioli" or pizza chefs in Naples, birthplace of the Margherita, handed out free pizzas on Wednesday in protest at high prices charged by rivals who, they say, use the spike in commodity prices to rip off consumers.

In the city where the classic "Margherita" with mozzarella, tomato and basil topping was invented in the 19th century -- and named in honor of a queen with a taste for fast food -- 30 cooks lit up six wood-burning ovens to cook 5,000 thin-crusted Neapolitan pizzas for queues of local people and tourists.

The group staged the protest in Piazza Dante to demand stricter price controls to defend the reputation of a traditional Neapolitan product which they said should be "the synthesis of quality and low cost."

Commodity prices, like fuel prices, have fallen back from record highs in the past month on worries about global consumer and business demand as the world economy heads into a slowdown. But retail prices have so far failed to reflect that trend.

"Everything has become more expensive now, including pizza, for people who need to watch what they spend," said 19-year-old Arianna Masiello, taking advantage of the free pizza offer.

Pizzaioli in Naples favor fixing the price of a slice at 3-3.50 euros ($4.40-$5.15) -- when most pizza outlets charge a minimum of 4 euros and often nearly twice that much.
Now, I'll agree that more than five bucks is pretty expensive for a slice of pizza, and while I think it's nice that they're trying to keep costs down for their customers, an expensive slice of pizza is hardly the worst thing in the world.

Speaking of which...
The price of rat meat has quadrupled in Cambodia this year as inflation has put other meat beyond the reach of poor people, officials said on Wednesday.

With consumer price inflation at 37 percent according to the latest central bank estimate, demand has pushed a kilogram of rat meat up to around 5,000 riel ($1.28) from 1,200 riel last year.

Spicy field rat dishes with garlic thrown in have become particularly popular at a time when beef costs 20,000 riel a kg.
That kind of puts things in perspective, now doesn't it?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I think there's a valuable lesson to be learned in this story. A lesson about not selling your spouse's stuff without asking first.
Tracy Holmes said she sold her husband's "Sin City" DVD for $10 at her garage sale because she thought he wasn't likely to watch it again anytime soon, The Ann Arbor (Mich.) News reported Tuesday.

However, her husband, Fred, asked her about the DVD about a week later and revealed to her that he had hidden at least $1,200 in the case for a Christmas trip to Disney World with his wife and their three young children.

"He thought apparently (the DVD case) was a great spot to hide it from me, and it was," Holmes said to the newspaper. "I didn't think to look there."
Apparently not.

Anyway, she hopes the guy who bought the DVD will return the money. Good luck with that.

My Mom and Dad Nominated an Empty Suit for President, and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt

This week, Denver is full of Hope, Change, and, apparently, a bunch of cheesy crap for sale:
Democrat "donkey poop," Barack Obama hot-sauce and t-shirts for dogs: Denver souvenir shops are doing a roaring trade in gifts and souvenirs during convention week.

At her downtown dog boutique -- Dog Savvy -- owner Dana Hood says Democratic-themed accessories for pooches have been flying off the shelves in the build-up to the party pow-wow.

The most popular items? "The 'Bark Obama' t-shirts have been selling really well, and the George W. Bush biscuits have been a big hit," Hood told AFP.

Not surprisingly, Obama merchandise has been heavily outscoring the souvenirs that cater to supporters of Republican presidential hopeful John McCain.

"If our sales figures were votes then Obama would win by a landslide," Hood said. "Every day we rearrange the displays where customers have picked stuff up -- but we never have to touch the McCain section because no one goes near it," she added, pointing to a neatly stacked pile of "John McCanine" dog t-shirts.
Gee, who could have guessed that the Obama souvenirs would outsell McCain stuff in a town crawling with moonbats?

Oh, and check this out:
The official Democratic National Convention souvenir store meanwhile was stocking an ominous sounding board game: "Wreck the Nation: The Game of Political Misbehavior."
I know it's probably some game where Chimpy McBu$hitler and the eeeeevilll Rethuglikkkans ruin America, but do you really want to stock a game that's basically a joke about destroying our country in your official gift shop?

Oh, and as for that "donkey poop," it's apparently some kind of chocolate-covered sunflower seeds. Appetizing name, no?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Weird tales of the Sitemeter IX

I got a hit today from someone searching Google for "women made to wear nipple clamps". Whoever the freaky-deaky searcher from Akron, Ohio was, he or she (please, please, please let it be a she!) was sent to this post from January of last year.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by, mysterious Ohioan stranger. I hope I helped, in some small way, in your quest to get your freak on.

Update 8/26: Apparently, this blog is the top result for "dog collar nipple clamps" on Google. I've never been so proud.

Marketing genius

I don't know about people in Poland, but this kind of thing seems like it would be more likely to piss me off than to make me want to buy a phone:
When Apple Inc rolled out its iPhone in the United States, some fans paid big money to be among the first to get their hands on the device. In Poland, people are getting paid to line up.

"We have these fake queues at front of 20 stores around the country to drum up interest in the iPhone," a spokesman said.

As part of a marketing campaign ahead of the iPhone's Friday launch in Poland, the country's largest mobile operator Orange is paying dozens of actors to stand in queues.
Yeah, because you know what everybody likes? Waiting in line. When people see a really, really long line, they just can't wait to join in on all the line-waiting fun. That's why a visit to the DMV is always such a great, big goddamn treat. Why, I can't fucking wait to renew my driver's license.

Oh, and if you thought I was going to make a Polish joke here, you're sorely mistaken. I like to think that I'm above that kind of crass, cheap humor. That sort of thing is about as unwelcome here as, say, a screen door would be on a submarine.


This here story may just be the cutest damn thing I've ever based a post on:
A 15-pound cocker spaniel-poodle mix named Pawlee scared off a mother bear and her two cubs Sunday morning after they strayed into his owners' back yard.

Whether his bark was worse than his bite, Pawlee's tactic worked just fine. These three bears got the hint and took off.

"We had just let him out for the morning and he ran into the yard and started barking his head off," owner Fran Osiason said.

Osiason said her 9-year-old son, Jacob, went outside to see what the commotion was about and came running back in to report there were bears in the yard.

She was worried that the mother would come after Pawlee to protect her cubs, but the pugnacious pup, just 8 months old, had other plans.

His barking drove the two cubs up a tree, and they eventually climbed down and hopped over a fence with their mother and retreated into the woods.
Normally, this is the spot where I'd make some kind of snarky joke about someone being a crackhead or a drunk or a whore (or all three) and call them a dumbass, but this is a story about a cute little puppy defending his yard from a bunch of bears. What the hell am I supposed to do with that? I've really painted myself into a corner here.

Oh, hey, that's it! I'm the drunken dumbass here! Saved that one right at the buzzer.

That's a new one

I went to cover a wing-ding held by a local city in honor of the opening of a new police station today, and they had pre-printed name badges for everyone in attendance, myself included. Now, I'm accustomed to people spelling my name "Shawn," or (less frequently) "Shaun," but I've never seen anybody mangle it quite as badly as they did today.

"Chean." Yes, really. The city's Public Information Officer, who I'd spoken to on the phone before, but met face-to-face for the first time today, told me she felt embarrassed by how badly they'd screwed it up, especially since her son's middle name is Sean. Every time I went to talk to someone, I could see a look of confusion pass over their face before I would tell them my name and say, "No, it's not really spelled like that."

I disliked my name when I was a kid, wishing it could have been a little more "normal," but I've grown into it since then. But still, there are times like today when I wish my parents hadn't been quite so enamored of the work of a certain Irish playwright. Oh well, at least I could always find those little license plates with my name on them at Disneyland. No such luck for my brother, who was always pissed that the closest they ever had was "Brandon." Heh.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Nobody asked you

You know, bad punctuation and spelling are things that bother me, but you don't see me going around acting like a dick about it:
Two self-styled vigilantes against typos who defaced a more than 60-year-old, hand-painted sign at Grand Canyon National Park were sentenced to probation and banned from national parks for a year.

Jeff Deck and Benjamin Herson pleaded guilty Aug. 11 for the damage done March 28 at the park's Desert View Watchtower. The sign was made by Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter, the architect who designed the rustic 1930s watchtower and other Grand Canyon-area landmarks.

Deck and Herson, both 28, toured the United States this spring, wiping out errors on government and private signs. They were interviewed by NPR and the Chicago Tribune, which called them "a pair of Kerouacs armed with Sharpies and erasers and righteous indignation."

An affidavit by National Park Service agent Christopher A. Smith said investigators learned of the vandalism from an Internet site operated by Deck on behalf of the Typo Eradication Advancement League, or TEAL.

Authorities said a diary written by Deck reported that while visiting the watchtower, he and Herson "discovered a hand-rendered sign inside that, I regret to report, contained a few errors."

The fiberboard sign has yellow lettering with a black background. Deck wrote that they used a marker to cover an erroneous apostrophe, put the apostrophe in its proper place with white-out and added a comma.

The misspelled word "emense" was not fixed, Deck wrote, because "I was reluctant to disfigure the sign any further. ... Still, I think I shall be haunted by that perversity, emense, in my train-whistle-blighted dreams tonight."
What a pretentious asshole. And what a couple of dumbasses. Even if you think you're doing everyone a favor, running around and writing on stuff that isn't yours is still vandalism, so it's probably not a good idea to give interviews about it or write about it where it can be easily found.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Somebody didn't learn his lesson

There was a phrase my mom used to use to describe people who couldn't stay out of trouble—"born to hang." I think that describes this guy fairly well:
A 22-year-old man was back behind bars about 12 hours after he was released from jail, accused of stealing a car and beer and leading police on a high-speed chase.

Darren E. Roberts was released from the Sullivan County Jail Tuesday afternoon after competing his sentence for auto theft.

But Indiana State Police say that early Wednesday morning, Roberts stole a 2004 red Ford Mustang in Linton, then drove to a gas station in Cloverdale where he allegedly stole some beer and fled.
The cops eventually caught him again after a high speed chase, and he's back behind bars. Which is good for everyone involved, I guess. The cops got their man, the public doesn't have to worry about him stealing their cars, and Roberts is back in jail, a place which he seems to have terribly missed during his twelve hours on the outside.

Enjoy your stay

I've never been in jail, but if movies and television have taught me anything, it's not a very friendly place. And while this walk-a-mile-in-their-shoes thing sounds like a nice gesture, something tells me it might not end well:
Sheriff Mark Curran of Lake County, Illinois, walked into his own jail on Wednesday to spend a week as a prisoner, saying he was divinely inspired to learn what it was like to be confined and to sample jail programs designed to reduce recidivism.

"The biblical adage that we reap what we sow is very true in criminal justice," said Curran, 45, before exchanging his business suit for a prison jumpsuit at the Waukegan, Illinois, facility near Chicago.


Curran will spend time in the general population of some 600 inmates who are awaiting trial on charges of murder, rape and lesser crimes, though at times he will have his own cell.
Um, is he going to be wearing a disguise or something? Because those murderers and rapists probably aren't inclined to be very friendly toward law enforcement figures.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Grandmother of the year

My late Grandmothers were both wonderful women, always willing to spoil my brother and I with treats like candy or fresh-baked cookies, telling us stories, and never, ever doing anything like this
Investigators said Jeanne Shahan left the children, a 14-year-old-boy and a 2-year-old girl, in her car with the windows rolled up for at least an hour and 15 minutes while she gambled at the Mardi Gras Casino, WFOR-TV, Fort lauderdale, Fla., reported Wednesday.

"The children seem fine," said Daniel Adkins, a representative from the Mardi Gras Casino. "We brought them inside and they both cooperated, gave us the name of who they were here with and we were able to locate the grandmother."

Shahan was charged with two counts of aggravated child neglect.
Something tells me Grandma Jeanne isn't going to be asked to watch the kids again anytime in the near future. Unless their parents want them to learn how to count cards, anyway.

911, it turns out, is not a joke

What do you do when you can't get a refund on an unopened box of condoms? Well, if you're an ordinary, level-headed person, you grudgingly take them home and hope you'll have a reason to use them sometime in the near future. If, on the other hand, you're a mouth breathing, sub-moronic dumbass, you do something like this:
A 21-year-old Blauvelt man who was refused a refund for a box of condoms called 911 and falsely reported a robbery, giving police a suspect description of the gas station clerk who denied the refund, Englewood police said.

City of Englewood police who responded to the scene on Saturday morning said it turned out that Kadien Jackson called them only because he wanted to get a refund for the unopened box of condoms he had bought at the Getty Gas station on Route 4 East the day before.

Jackson, of 428 Greenbush Road, called police on his cellphone around 9:45 a.m. to report that he had been robbed, police said.
The cops, it turns out, take a rather dim view of such shenanigans, and charged him with a felony for making a false 911 call and a misdemeanor for filing a false police report. Hope it was worth it, jackass.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A little late

They say that the wheels of justice turn slowly, but apparently not slowly enough for this guy:
An Oslo court has rejected an inheritance claim from a man insisting he descends from Norwegian king Haakon V Magnusson, who died in 1319, since the statute of limitation for such a claim is far past.
Oh, so they got him on a technicality. That deadline must have just passed by, huh?
"In accordance with the inheritance law ... the right to claim inheritance expires if the heir does not demand his ... right within 10 years after the testator dies," the Oslo District Court wrote in its decision, seen by AFP on Tuesday.
Well, he was only off by 679 years or so.

If he was planning to use the inheritance to build a time machine to travel back to 1329 in order to get in under the statute of limitations, I guess he's shit out of luck.*

*And yes, I'm well aware of the fact that this joke makes absolutely no logical sense whatsoever. I just couldn't think of anything else.

Parading around in the buff

You know, I'm usually fairly wary of events that feature public nudity, seeing as how I've often found that the kinds of people who typically want to parade around nude in front of people are usually the last people you'd want to see without clothes on. But this one might be the exception to that rule:
A New Zealand court has allowed a parade of topless porn stars on motor bikes to proceed on the main street of the country's biggest city, local media said Tuesday.

Auckland City Council had sought a court injunction to stop the "Boobs on Bikes" parade, scheduled for Wednesday, saying it breached a bylaw banning offensive public events.

But Judge Nicola Mathers said while opponents may find the parade offensive or tasteless, the fact that 80,000 people had gathered for a similar event last year meant a significant number of people did not agree with the critics, New Zealand Press Association said.
Really? Tens of thousands of people would show up to an event where they could get a free look at nekkid porn stars? I'm sure they were just there to shake their fists and shout their disapproval at the participants. Yeah.

Monday, August 18, 2008

A nasty piece of work

Being a cynical bastard, I tend not to have a lot of faith in humanity to begin with, but then a heartwarming story like this comes along and changes my mind confirms that people are scum:
A British woman pleaded guilty to theft after a camera planted in a teddy bear caught her stealing money from a terminally ill woman she was hired to care for.

Yvonne Allen, 28, pleaded guilty to two counts of theft and was sentenced to six months imprisonment at the Community Justice Center after the family of Thelma Sampson, 75 -- who has been diagnosed with a terminal case of leukemia -- videotaped Allen stealing $120 from the Walton, England, great-grandmother in July, the Liverpool Echo reported Monday.
That's pretty goddamn low, Yvonne. Here's hoping you die in a fire.

Not a very Sly move

With everything going on in the news lately, this is some mighty bad timing on Stallone's part:
Hollywood actor Sylvester Stallone, mighty destroyer of Soviet opponents in the "Rambo" and "Rocky" movies, now plans to advertise Russian vodka.

Russian vodka producer Synergy said on Friday it had signed a one-year contract with Stallone, who will appear in television and newspaper advertisements for the vodka brand Russian Ice, starting September 1.

Sources valued the deal at $1 million.

Stallone -- whose film character John Rambo killed Soviet troops by the dozen in Afghanistan and whose Rocky Balboa humiliated Soviet boxer Ivan Drago -- will advertise the product under the slogan: "There is a bit of Russian in all of us."
Yeah, and if you happen to be a certain small eastern European country, there's a lot of Russians in you right now.

Look, I'm not saying it would be easy for me to turn down a million bucks, and you all know how much a Moron like me enjoys the sauce, but still, not a very good PR move, Sly.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Drugstore cowboy

I guess when you think about it, the kind of guy who has to rob a pharmacy for a bunch of pills isn't going to be a very focused, success-oriented person:
Memo to anyone planning a drug store robbery: don't lock your keys in the getaway vehicle. Police said John Wilkinson, 24, of Big Spring, did just that after he allegedly robbed the Stanton Drug Store of Zanax and hydrocodine with what was later found to be a caulking gun.

They said Wilkinson used the caulking gun, wrapped in a dark cloth, to get the drugs Thursday afternoon.

Afterward, he allegedly headed back to his vehicle, which was parked and running in front of the drug store, and discovered he was locked out, the Midland Reporter-Telegram reported in its online edition Thursday.

Stanton Police Chief Mike Adams said Wilkinson then tried to get away on foot. Police, who thought he had a gun, shot him in the top of his shoulder during the short chase.
Well, then, I guess he probably got some free painkillers anyway.

They're too sexy for their bratwurst

I know there are at least a couple of lady-type people who read this blog, and I'm pretty sure that if I asked them to name what they thought was the sexiest city in the world, I'd get answers like New York, Paris, or Venice. But Milwaukee?
The women's magazine Marie Claire has named Milwaukee the sexiest city in the world, amazing many Milwaukee residents.

Lea Goldman, the magazine's editor, told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the staff decided that a city best-known for its breweries and bratwurst has a lot to offer the women in their 20s and 30s that Marie Claire considers its core audience. Other cities that got close consideration were Miami, New Orleans and Beijing.

Events like the Arab World Festival and the celebration of Harley-Davidson's 105th anniversary helped put Milwaukee over the top. The magazine described the city as welcoming "NASCAR tailgaters, Lebanese dabka dance fans and Foo Fighters freaks."

"We were astonished by how robust the city was in terms of entertainment," Goldman said. "On any given weekend, you can find at least three festivals in the area that offer diverse options."
You know, all that stuff sounds fun and entertaining, but is it sexy?

And while it's been some time since I've been in Wisconsin, I don't remember the natives as being a particularly sexy bunch. Then again, they drink pretty heavily there, so I guess they have the beer goggles thing going for them.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

What do you leave for a tip?

Somehow, I don't think this would work down at my particular watering hole:
A pub is offering pints for potatoes, or any other home-grown produce, in a bartering initiative which is taking off as the credit crunch bites.

The Pigs pub in the village of Edgefield, eastern England, is offering the free booze in exchange for fruit, fish, meat or vegetables which can be used on its menu.

"If you grow, breed, shoot or steal anything that may look at home on our menu, then bring it in and let's do a deal," says a sign in the pub, which has swapped pints for a kilo of potatoes, three mackerel, or a locally-shot rabbit.
Yeah, I'm pretty sure that if I tried to pay for a few drinks down at the bar with some fish or a dead animal, they'd probably ask me to leave. In fact, I think it's fairly likely that the police would end up getting involved.


I'm an embarrassment to Barack!

I only scored 16 on the Obama Test

Looks like I'm gonna have to shape up, lest I incur Teh Obamessiah's wrath. Wait, do Messiahs have wrath, or is that just their Dads? That's what I get for not bitterly clinging to more religion. You can take the quiz here.

(Via dpud.)

They were only off by a few thousand miles

Sometimes in life, it's the little details that make a big difference. Like, for instance, when you're on the city council of one of a country's largest city, you might want to, say, know what the city actually looks like:
Britain's second-largest city, Birmingham, has a new skyline _ only it belongs to its Alabama namesake. Birmingham City Council distributed 720,000 leaflets that praised residents for exceeding recycling targets, carrying a message that read: "Thank You Birmingham." The message appeared stamped across a photograph of the city's skyline. But the photo was not of Birmingham, England, but of Birmingham, Alabama.
And it's not even the first time Birmingham politicians have made this mistake.
Three lawmakers who represent Birmingham at the European Parliament accidentally used a picture of the U.S. city on their Internet site in January.
See, this is why you look at a website before it goes online, or at a leaflet before you print and distribute it. To see if there are any errors you need to correct. They used to call it proofreading.
Officials said the wrong image was selected from an Internet photo archive.

"It's human error," said Birmingham City Council spokesman Kris Kowalewski. "We accept that the wrong photo was used, but the text and detail contained in the leaflet is wholly correct."
Thank goodness. If you'd printed a bunch of incorrect text and detail, people might think you were incompetent or something.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Curse of Chef Aid?

I was just watching this old South Park episode tonight, and I started thinking about all the people involved with it who have died.

Isaac Hayes, being the most recent, who did the voice of Chef, of course. Then there's Rick James, Joe Strummer, and Ol' Dirty Bastard (I don't think he made it into the final version of the episode) who voiced themselves. Finally, Johnnie Cochran, who didn't contribute his voice to the episode, was a character nonetheless. Wow. That's a body count of five people from one episode of a cartoon in just under ten years.

Oh, and that might also include Mary Kay Bergman, who did most of the female voices on the show for the first few years. That includes the Mayor of South Park, who appears in one scene after having sex with Chef, but Bergman isn't listed in the credits. Bergman killed herself on Veterans' Day in 1999. That might make six.

Coincidence? Yeah, probably.

Update: Related.

Revenge is a dish best served on eBay

Ah, eBay. It's not just for nerds who want mint-condition action figures anymore; no, it's become the go-to site for humiliating cheating spouses:
An Australian woman has taken revenge on her cheating husband by putting a photograph of his lover's underpants up for sale on the auction site eBay.

In the listing the woman says she is selling a picture of a pair of lacy black knickers and an empty condom wrapper "size small" found in her bed after her husband had an affair with another woman.

The seller -- identified on eBay only as annastella007 -- provides a rather unflattering description of the knickers.

"They are so huge I thought they may make someone a nice shawl or, even better, something for Halloween perhaps."

The eBay listing, entitled "Empty condom packet & a photo of 'The Tart's' knickers," also includes a detailed account of the events leading up to the discovery.
Get ready for it, people, because those events amount to a great, big, hilarious pile of FAIL...
The woman says she returned from work after receiving a romantic text message from her husband of 22 years that was clearly misdirected to find him at home watching a DVD and discouraging her from entering their bedroom.

In the room she found the empty condom wrapper under his pillow and "the Tart's knickers ... at the foot of the bed."
The article goes on to say that she's selling a photo of the underpants because of a company policy that prohibits the sale of used undergarments. I bet that's unpopular in Japan, but I digress.

She's also selling his Harley, starting at the low, low price of 99 cents. That'll learn him to pay a little more attention to his texting.

Pain in the ass buys truck

Sure, money is money, but this is just ridiculous:
An Ohio man who says he doesn't trust paper money has delivered enough coins to cover half the price of a brand new pickup truck.

Employees at a dealership in the Cincinnati suburb of Springdale say 70-year-old James Jones plunked down 16 coffee cans full of coins Tuesday for a new Chevrolet Silverado.

Salesman David Crisswell says employees spent 90 minutes counting the collection of dimes, quarters, half-dollars and dollar coins, which covered half the $16,000 price of the pickup.
He paid the other $8,000 with a check.

Now, why would this old crank have such a problem with paper money? This account of the sale may hold the answer:
"Paper money will burn, but it is hard to damage coins. I bought four or five rolls of coins each month. I don't know how long it took me to save this amount, probably all my life, spending some of it now and then," he said.
What, does the man suffer from spontaneous combustion on a regular basis?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I can has sleazeburger?

As the slogan says, you can have it your way at Burger King. Unless, that is, your way happens to be bathing in one of their kitchen sinks:
Burger King Corp. said Tuesday it had parted ways with an employee who was recorded taking a soapy bath in a utility sink in one of its restaurants in a video that ended up on his MySpace page.

The nearly four-minute video, which was posted online Thursday, shows the man taking the bath to celebrate his birthday. In the video, shot by another worker, the employee refers to himself only as "Mr. Unstable" and appears to be naked.

Timothy Tackett, 25, told WDTN-TV in Dayton that he is the sink-bather and that he made the video for his MySpace page. The video had been removed by Tuesday night.

Tackett said he regretted taking the bath because it led to the firing of the employee who did the recording, as well as the restaurant's shift manager.
That's what he regrets? Because if I were him, I might regret being the kind of jackass who endangers the health of countless restaurant customers for a stupid MySpace video. But, hey, that's just me.

When animals furries attack

Ah, where else but Japan could an incident like a dude in a Winnie-the-Pooh costume assaulting and robbing people on a city street occur?
Masayuki Ishikawa was hanging out on a Tokyo street corner after midnight last month while wearing the cuddly costume, accompanied by two friends dressed as a mouse and a panther, when he took offence at being stared at, police said.

"It's uncommon to see people dressed up like this, so the victims were watching them. Then the perpetrator came up and said 'What are you staring at?'" a police spokesman said.
And why were these guys hanging around in animal costumes? If the spokesman is to believed, it's because they were out of clean clothes. They got about $160 from their victims, so I guess they would have had enough for a trip to the laundromat.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The open door

I know it's probably not easy to keep your shit together when you're driving drunk and you've had a car accident, but still, you might not want to leave quite so much evidence behind:
A car door and a stack of personal papers left behind at an accident scene helped authorities in Morris County track down an alleged drunk driver. Boonton police said a 20-year-old woman struck a utility pole at about 4:30 a.m. Sunday, then drove off.

Officers then responded to the scene and found the door of a 1996 Chevrolet Cavalier and several papers bearing the woman's name and address.
A short time later, apparently, cops in a nearby town found an intoxicated woman in a Chevy Cavalier that was missing a door, crashed into a stone wall. Gee, I wonder, was she the same person?
The woman, who was treated at an area hospital for minor injuries, faces charges of drunken driving, underage drunken driving and numerous motor vehicle violations.
I guess so.

You can't make this stuff up

Sometimes, you come across a story that's just so damn ridiculous that you can't even make up a decent joke about it. This is one of those stories:
A giant inflatable dog turd by American artist Paul McCarthy blew away from an exhibition in the garden of a Swiss museum, bringing down a power line and breaking a greenhouse window before it landed again, the museum said Monday.

The art work, titled "Complex S(expletive..)", is the size of a house. The wind carried it 200 metres (yards) from the Paul Klee Centre in Berne before it fell back to Earth in the grounds of a children's home, said museum director Juri Steiner.
First of all, this is about an inflatable piece of dog shit as big as a house! Who even knew such a thing existed? Secondly, this may be the very first time I've ever seen the word "turd" used in a wire story. Third, I wonder if anybody at the children's home saw it coming. I mean, how terrifying must it be to see a giant piece of crap floating in the sky, coming directly toward you?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

R.I.P. Isaac Hayes

He was found dead at his home in Memphis this afternoon. I gained an appreciation for the man's music when I raided my parents' record cabinet and found the double LP soundtrack from Shaft. The man was a genius at writing and arranging music.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Free gift with purchase

You know, it's always nice when you buy something and get a little something extra thrown in for free. Well, almost always:
A Burrillville [Rhode Island] town councilor got more than he bargained for when he bought a used police cruiser at auction. Kevin Blais bought the 2004 Ford Crown Victoria in an online auction from the Hartford, Conn., public works department.

He was cleaning it last week when he noticed a cracked area on the one-piece molded seat assembly.

When he removed the seat assembly to clean the floor, he found a plastic bag containing a substance that local police later confirmed was cocaine.

Blais speculates that a suspect stuffed the drugs through the crack to prevent police from finding them. Burrillville Lt. Kevin San Antonio says Hartford police were "apologetic" when he told them of the discovery.
The article goes on to say that a police spokesperson agreed that his theory about a suspect stuffing the coke into the seat is probably correct. I would hope so. Otherwise, they'd better be keeping an eye on the cop who used to drive that car.

So, anything interesting happen today?

Oh, yeah. That thing.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Are you sure you want "authentic" Chinese food?

So the Beijing Olympics start tomorrow, and the city's um, interesting array of cuisine is on display for tourists from around the world:
The Guolizhuang restaurant specializes in animal penises while there are several donkey restaurants.

Stalls along Snack Street in the Wangfujing shopping district sell a range of delicacies on sticks such as seahorses for 30 yuan ($4.50) and cicadas for five yuan.

The Chinese traditionally believe certain animals or their organs have medicinal properties.

"The seahorses are good for men's kidneys and their virility. Those (crustacea) are for the girls to improve their skin and looks, and these (lizards) are for both the boys and the girls, they boost your virility," said food vendor Sun Hainan.

However there appeared to be few takers on Snack Street.

"I haven't tried them and I'm not going to," said 11-year-old Fang Jie from Chingdao who was in Beijing for the Olympics.

One of China's largest travel services, China International Travel Service (CITS), said visitors might consider things eaten in China to be distasteful but they needed to "bridge the cultural gap and look at it with an open mind."
Yeah, look, I'm as open-minded as the next guy, but I don't think I'll be dining at any restaurants that specialize in animal penises in the near future. Or, ever, really.

On another note, I was surprised by this admission about Red China's not-too-distant past from CITS:
"There have been periods of severe famine even as recently as the late 1960s when tens of millions died of starvation in the Great Leap Forward. Back then you would have been glad for what is on today's menu," said CITS in a statement.
Yeah, I guess if I was starving to death in one of Chairman Mao's murderously idiotic commie schemes, lizards, bugs, and seahorses might not sound quite so bad. Downright appetizing, actually.

I still might take a pass on the penises, though.

Slower drivers ironically may be whizzing along highway

Working on a roadside litter crew doesn't sound like a very enjoyable way to spend your time, but sounds like it's really unpleasant along a certain stretch of Oregon highway:
Police say there's been an alarming rise in urine-filled plastic containers found along a three-mile stretch of Interstate 84 in eastern Oregon.

A litter crew for the Oregon Department of Transportation picked up an estimated 200-300 urine filled plastic bottles, along the highway, about half of which were found in a short stretch dubbed "Three Mile Hill."
The cops attribute the increase in pee-filled bottles to higher gas prices causing people to drive slower and avoid stopping at rest stops. Personally, I believe it has to do with an increase in the number of crude assholes driving through Oregon.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

The sporting life

I guess this makes me feel somewhat better about my horribly unhealthy lifestyle:
Some athletes fret about the Beijing smog. Others say, relax and have a cigarette.

While many Olympians meditate or listen to music to calm their pre-competition nerves, several weightlifters training in Beijing Tuesday tried to lighten up by lighting up.

"I'd say 70 out of a 100 athletes in the Olympic village smoke," said Italian weightlifter Giorgio de Luca, perhaps exaggerating a little.

The lifter, looking happy and relaxed in shorts and green flip-flops, was winding down after a gym session with a coffee and a cigarette. He cheerfully ignored the mildly disapproving glances from his coach.
Wow, maybe even I could become an Olympic athlete! I mean, if it weren't for my utter lack of strength, speed, grace, or athletic ability. But I've got the smoking part down pat.

"Take a left at the corner and go straight to jail."

Man, don't you just love it when bad things happen to stupid people?
A woman who allegedly was driving while intoxicated in the Sturgis area picked the wrong house to stop at. Meade County Sheriff Ron Merwin said a 37-year-old woman got lost about 4 a.m. Tuesday and stopped at a home to get directions.

The house belongs to one of the sheriff's deputies. The female deputy believed that the woman was intoxicated and would not let her drive away. Merwin said that resulted in a wrestling match.
Well, that was a bad idea, seeing as how she ended up with a felony assault charge to go along with her DUI. I mean, really, when you're busted like that, why double down?

Oh, that's right. Because you're a dumbass.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


I'm not the kind of person who's averse to trying new foods, but I might think twice before trying anything recommended by this guy:
The chef and TV presenter [Antony Worrall Thompson] said in a magazine article that the weed henbane, also known as stinking nightshade, made an excellent addition to summertime meals.

There was plenty of it, it grew locally and was used by the ancient Greeks and the Arabs for its anesthetic properties.

Er, not quite.
Yeah, it turns out henbane is toxic and causes vomiting, convulsions, hallucinations, and in "extreme cases," death. That doesn't sound like something I want in my salad. I prefer iceberg lettuce or romaine, actually.
Worrall Thompson, who was discussing his passion for organic foods, had confused the plant with another of a similar name.


The chef had intended to refer to fat hen, a weed rich in vitamin C, that is edible, media reports said.
Aside from being rich in vitamin C, it also apparently has the added benefits of not making you puke, convulse, freak out and see weird shit, or, you know, die. Other than that, same difference.

More Floridiots abuse 911

Yesterday, I posted about the idiot down in Florida who called the cops because Subway got his sammich order wrong. Well, it turns out he's not the only idiot in the Sunshine State who doesn't understand what the 911 system is for:
A second Florida man has been arrested on charges of making false 911 calls in as many days. An arrest report says 47-year-old Carlos Gutierrez was at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino early Monday and called 911 to say the slot machine stole his money. The report says Gutierrez left the casino to place a second 911 call to say the same thing.

He was arrested and charged with making a false 911 call. He's being held with no bail set.

On Sunday another man was arrested after calling 911 five times during an argument with his brother. He demanded that dispatchers send deputies to help sort things out.
What the hell, people? I've never been to Florida, so I'm not sure what's going on with these retards. Does the heat make you stupid or something?

What East Coast bias?

Sure, the best team in Major League Baseball held on to win a nailbiter tonight, but what did ESPNews lead off with? Well, there was the the story about how the third-place Yankees lost Joba Chamberlain to a shoulder injury in a loss to Texas. After that, they highlighted the fact that the Tampa Bay Rays (who are at least in first place) lost to the Indians. Did they mention the Angels and their victory over the Orioles next? Nope. They felt the need to mention the fact that the second-place Red Sox lost to the Kansas City Royals, who are 9.5 games back in the AL Central.

They waited until eleven minutes into their broadcast to report on the fact that the Angels, my favorite team, was the first to make it to 70 wins on the season. They reported on the Brewers, who are five games back in the NL Central before they mentioned a clutch victory by the most dominant team in all of the Big Leagues. I know they're located in Connecticut, but what the hell?

Face it, there's a California team that's dominating baseball right now, no matter how much you or your East Coast fans would like the Red Sox or the Yanks to be the top story.

Monday, August 04, 2008

What is the nature of your emergency?

Nobody likes it when a restaurant screws up their order, but most people have more sense than to get the police involved when it happens:
One man thought his sandwich was an emergency and called 911 twice.

"It's unbelievable what people get upset about now days," says Tammy Morris, a Subway manager.

Who knew a Subway sandwich could cook up so much trouble? "When you ask for 'the works' it consists of certain vegetables on your sandwich, it does not include mayonnaise or mustard," Morris says.

Police say that made Reginald Peterson pretty mad, mad enough to call 911 twice about his Spicy Italian Sub. It happened at the Subway on Atlantic Blvd. Thursday night.

"He tasted his sandwich and it didn't have mayonnaise or mustard on it, so he became upset," Morris says.
According to another account of the incident, Peterson made the second 911 call to complain that officers weren't arriving on the scene fast enough for his liking. Which is somewhat ironic, seeing as how they arrested his dumb ass when they finally showed up.

Easy come, easy go

I'm something of an agnostic, but stories like this one lead me to believe that if there is a God, He's got a pretty good sense of humor:
A pickup truck thief lost his purloined Chevy Silverado to an armed carjacker during a 7-Eleven stop. Police Cmdr. Kelly McMillin said "you couldn't make up something stranger than this."

A 33-year-old man told police he stole the pickup Saturday then, while sitting outside a convenience store, a man with a gun hopped in and ordered him to start driving.
The article goes on to say that when the truck ran out of gas, the guy with the gun told the original thief to get out and push, but he got away and called the police. Something tells me he probably didn't give them his name.

"I'm always looking for the sun"

Just because:

Sunday, August 03, 2008

A meeting of the minds Morons

I met fellow Moronblogger XBradTC for a few beers tonight, just down the road from the real historical marker in Brea Canyon that's my blog's namesake. We mostly talked about military matters (Brad is an Army vet, while according to my lefty betters, I'm a Chickenhawk), politics (especially our mutual dismay over the rise of Captain Bullshit), and the Moronosphere. Brad is a very nice, well-mannered guy, though he swears more than any self-described Evangelical Christian I've ever met, something he chalks up to having a couple of Catholic Chaplains in the service.

We both agreed that we have to get together with more SoCal Moronbloggers over beers sometime in the near future (we're looking at bloggers like you, Malor) and that we ought to try to lure dpud out of Pennsylvania for a visit to the Golden State, if only to slip him some roofies and take compromising pictures of him for blackmail purposes. (Just kidding about that last part. Or am I?)

At any rate, Brad is a stand-up guy, especially since he picked up the entire tab for the evening. I totally owe him the next time we get together, especially since he's the only Moronblogger who knows what I currently look like and can describe me to police sketch artists who would be very interested in information regarding the disappearances of several hobos, not to mention the hijacking of a truckload of Val-U-Rite vodka.

(Cross-posted at doubleplusundead.)

Update: Here's Brad's take on our meeting. All I can say is that he's a filthy liar. Except for the stuff that's true. Which is everything. Although he downplayed how ruggedly handsome I am. Not cool, Brad.

Friday, August 01, 2008

Natural fight

I'm not saying the dude should have been stabbed, but seriously, four cans of that swill for ten bucks? Come on:
Grady "Skip" Wilburn Dollar, 64, was accused of stabbing Mickey Joe Hill, 37, during a dispute early Thursday, said Sgt. Mark Richard of the Lawrence County Sheriff's Department.

Richard said the two men had been drinking together when Dollar gave Hill $10 and told him to go to the store for more. Richard said Hill brought back only four cans of Natural Light, a low-cost brand, and Dollar got mad that he didn't get more for his money.

"He said, 'For $10 you could have gotten a half case,'" said Richard. "Four cans of Natural Light only cost $3 or $4."

The victim then asked for one of the four beers and pushed the older man when he refused to hand one over, the investigator said.

"Then the suspect went to the kitchen, got a big butcher knife and came back and stabbed him," Richard said.
I guess I'd be pretty pissed off too if I gave someone ten bucks and they brought back four cans of Natty Light. Hell, I'd be pissed off if I gave someone money to buy beer and they brought back any amount of that crap.

I may be a Moron, but I'm not illiterate

There's a cool article here about one of my favorite authors, Haruki Murakami. If you enjoy reading, I'd recommend picking up some of his stuff. A lot of his stuff is a bit strange, with spirits, people with unusual abilities, and parallel worlds. If you don't mind that sort of thing, I'd recommend The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle or the more recent Kafka on the Shore. If you like things a little more straightforward, try Norwegian Wood, which is one of the better love stories I've ever read.