and the Morning Edition [and the only one today!] of Chuck's News of the Weird Daily for Wednesday [and the News will be back on Friday morning!]
The District of Calamity (continuing series)
A particularly vicious, prolific teenage street mugger terrorizing one Washington, D.C., neighborhood has been given several chances by judges and youth agency officials, to the point where last week, a cop drummed up an unprecedented e-mail campaign by residents, to D.C. judges and officials, to please not let this guy out anymore before trial. So what happens? The guy gets picked up again, accused of three street robberies, and in "a paperwork mixup," released again, and U.S. Marshals are still looking for him. (Crime tip for D.C. youth: To keep from getting pre-trial detention, don't use a weapon; just sneak up behind pedestrians and beat 'em bloody with your fists.) Washington Post Comments 'pretrial_release'
Two snapshots of the state of journalism today (1) If you read the Pattaya Daily News in Thailand and see one of those stories in which a several-days-old dead body is discovered in a hotel room, the newspaper will have actual photos of the corpse, nude, on the sofa from various angles. (2) Or if you read the Daily News of Northwest Florida, you'll see a story like this one regarded as newsworthy. Pattaya Daily News///Daily News of Northwest Florida Comments 'stateof_journalism'
Your Daily Loser
A 49-yr-old guy used a Bobcat loader to jack the ton-and-a-half ATM from a credit union in Leavenworth, Kan., and take it out of town and drop it from a steep, 50-ft embankment to force it open. Only, the loader didn't let go of the ATM as it fell, and it was ugly at the bottom. Suspect hospitalized (non-life-threatening injuries, though). Leavenworth Times Comments 'bobcat_atm'
People Whose Sex Lives Are Worse Than Yours
David Lemus, 51, worked as a clown ("Trim-Trim") so you know his sex life couldn't that good, but he was sentenced to 12 yrs in prison for fooling around with two teenage girls. Press-Enterprise (Riverside, Calif.) [with unclownlike picture] Comments 'david_lemus'
Your Daily Jury Duty [no fair examining the evidence; verdict must be based on mugshot only]
William Ballenger, 23, Round Rock, Tex., might have killed his stepfather. ("Confessions" might get suppressed as evidence, but mugshots are always valid!) American-Statesman (Austin) Comments 'william_ballenger'
More Things to Worry About on Wednesday
Two burglars tried to steal a 55-inch TV that they soon realized was too big to fit in their car (and a neighbor of the victim wouldn't take a $100 bribe to hold the TV until the guys came back with a bigger car). Lincoln (Neb.) Journal Star
Another one of those championship x-ray cases: a 20-month-old urchin who fell face first onto car keys, which penetrated his eye socket and stuck in his brain (but he has fully recovered!). WKYT-TV (Lexington, Ky.) [video]///Daily Mail (London) [x-ray]
Today's Newsrangers: Stan Thomas, Karl Olson, John Holsinger, Barbara Osborn, Stephen Taylor Comments on More Things to Worry About on Wednesday? Comments 'worry_081126'
Thanks to the many, many readers who have tipped me to the North Carolina man who fended off a carjacker by crowning him with the frozen turkey he had just bought at the grocery store. I couldn't bring myself to it, though, because it's a Thanksgiving staple. I know two things will happen every Thanksgiving, often several times: Someone will smack someone else with a frozen turkey, and tragedies will result from attempts to deep-fry turkeys. Guaranteed. Anyway, against my better judgment, here's the carjacker story. Associated Press via Washington Post Comments 'editors_081126'
An unusual hobby: Adrian Leskiw designs fictional cities and nations, and then he draws roadmaps of them. In painstaking detail. He describes himself as a "roadgeek". You can browse through his collection of fictional roadmaps at The Map Realm. One use I can think of for these would be to sneak them into rental cars. (Mislabel them, of course.) Tourists would spend hours examining them, trying to figure out where they were.
But wait, there's more. Leskiw also collects covers of real roadmaps. He has an extensive collection of the official Michigan, Ontario and Ohio road maps. In the old days transportation departments apparently hired artists to design these covers. Now they seem to just slap generic photos on them.
and the Afternoon Edition of Chuck's News of the Weird Daily for Monday
Police don't yet know who was at fault when a car with five kids collided with a van, killing an 82-yr-old and sending a 72-yr-old to the hospital, but they do know that the kids got tired of waiting for the cops and rescuers to clear the area and so put in a food order for accident-scene delivery. Gold Coast News (Australia)
The rock band Accolade has just released its first single, Pinocchio, getting good underground play (except it's really underground because Accolade is an all-girl group of Saudis, in Jidda, and its lead singer, Lamia, has several piercings). New York Times
A business plan not too big to fail: A New York City pedicab will bike you around midtown Manhattan for $300 an hour, with your own pole and pole-dancer on the back. New York Post
A 13-yr-old F-Stater was arrested two weeks ago (according to this announcement last Friday) for disturbing class, which mainly included "continually" "purposely" breaking wind. WPBF-TV (West Palm Beach)
Also in the F State, professional family therapist Michael Holder was arrested for applying a Homer Simpson-"Why, you little—!" hold on his stepson. St. Petersburg Times
Recurring: Another DWEC crash, this time in Woodstock, Ontario ("driving while eating cereal") (yeah, from a bowl, with a spoon). Canadian Press
Professor Music's Weird Link o' the Day
Where is PETA on this: a collection of photos of dogs that must be totally humiliated at how their owners have dyed and primped them for show. The dogs look OK, but that's either extortion or Stockholm Syndrome because this is just not right. Sandy Paws Pet Grooming Shop (Yucca Valley, Calif.) [Link from Fark.com]
Today's Newsrangers: Jason Tuller, Sandy Pearlman, Pete Randall, Scott Langill, Paul Music, Casey Burns, Bob Pert, Thom Pigaga Comments on the Afternoon Edition of Chuck's News of the Weird Daily for Monday? Comments 'cycle_081124'
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.
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.