It's pretty common to hear people say that they're so disgusted with American politics that they're going to move to Canada and renounce their U.S. citizenship... especially if candidate X or Y wins the election. But people almost never follow through with this threat/promise.
But Joel Slater did. Back in the Reagan era (1987), he became so angry at U.S. policies that he decided to renounce his American citizenship. The problem was that he did this without first arranging to acquire citizenship in another country. So he made himself stateless.
He was in Australia when he renounced his citizenship, and had assumed he would be able to stay there. But no, Australia promptly deported him to the U.S. Then, as a stateless person, he discovered that he was effectively trapped in the U.S. because he couldn't travel anywhere else without a passport. He managed to make it into Canada and Mexico a few times without a passport, but they both eventually shipped him back to the States. He also couldn't legally work without a social security number. So he became homeless, surviving on "odd jobs and the generosity of strangers."
After much begging and pleading, he was able to regain his U.S. citizenship in 1993.
The artists' models at Rome's Academy of Fine Arts... sent their negotiator, Anna di Vetta, out onto the streets to press their claims. In girdle, bra, and high heels, Anna paraded through the city with a sign promising complete exposure of her 40½-31-40½ figure if her union's demands were not met. Instead of bravely meeting the challenge, the combined ministries of Labor and Public Instruction crumbled. They promised a fixed salary of $150 a month and fringe benefits—but only, reported a triumphant Anna, "if I promised not to take off all my clothes."
I live by the code of the parking chair. Someone (the writer didn't even know that the magnificent parking chair had a name, let alone all that it stands for) fired off a letter to my local paper today vilifying the practice, and it had me outraged. I've since submitted a rebuttal. In the course of research for the letter, I found the following recent story from The Morning Call in Allentown, PA detailing what can happen when you don't respect the parking chair. The police may have assured the man he did nothing wrong by moving the chair, but I bet he doesn't do it again. And if you believe in the chair like I do, you can always show it!
The Mgt. of WU--Alex, Chuck and Paul-- would like to apologize to our readers for foisting an overly political and jejune and tendentious post on you, even by proxy. You'll note that it's been deleted--although the comments formerly attached to it remain behind, so as to archive the wise and tasteful responses of our loyal readers.
Please forgive us, and continue reading as before.
Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.
Chuck is the purveyor of News of the Weird, the syndicated column which for decades has set the gold-standard for reporting on oddities and the bizarre.
Our banner was drawn by the legendary underground cartoonist Rick Altergott.