Friday, September 19, 2014

Who goes there?

Tom Hooker interviews Morgan the Sea Lion

YouTube link.

Man arrested for bathing and washing hair with mayonnaise in public fountain

Oklahoma Police say a man was arrested for bathing in a city fountain.

Officers received complaints about the man in the fountain at Reno and Mickey Mantle.

When officers got there they found Jorge Arturo Perez, 23 soaking wet and breathing hard. Perez told police that he was taking a bath in the fountain and was washing his hair with mayonnaise.

The officer told him a city ordinance prohibited him from bathing in the fountains and canal. Perez was arrested and taken to jail.

Man upset about having to move back in with his parents wandered neighbourhood firing AK-47

A man from Deltona, Florida, told deputies he was trying to release some built-up anger on Tuesday morning when he fired off multiple rounds from an AK-47 rifle while wandering around his neighbourhood, Volusia County deputies said.

Frederick Wenzel IV said he was upset because he’s 28 and had to move back in with his parents, so he drank several beers before taking a walk with his firearm in tow, according to a sheriff’s charging affidavit. Multiple residents told deputies they could hear the gunshots and a man yelling at about 5:30am.

Wenzel said he never intended to hurt anyone, but he had thought about shooting at the K-9 officer he saw looking for him, according to the affidavit. Children who had arrived at school bus stops in the area were told to return home to ensure their safety.

YouTube link.

Wenzel was arrested and charged with six counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, using a firearm while under the influence of alcohol, open carrying of weapons and carrying a concealed firearm. He is being held at the Volusia County Branch Jail without bail.

Burned armpit hair led to crash injuring several teenagers

Several teenagers had to go to the hospital in Boise, Idaho, after a prank with a lighter went horribly wrong over the weekend.

The Ada County Sheriff's Office says an 18-year-old was driving a Ford Bronco early on Sunday morning when a 16-year-old front passenger lit the driver's armpit hair on fire with a lighter.

The vehicle ended up rolling, tossing two teen girls from the vehicle. Paramedics had to take three of the teens to the hospital after the crash for non life-threatening injuries.

The driver originally told deputies that he swerved to avoid hitting an animal, but detectives quickly learned that the teens in the front of the car were messing around just prior to the crash. The Ada County Sheriff's Office cited Tristian Myers with inattentive driving. The teen who allegedly lit the boy's armpit hair on fire was also cited for interfering with the driver's safe operation of a vehicle.

Man armed with banana robbed store

Police are looking for a man who was caught on camera on Tuesday morning robbing a West Philadelphia corner store with a banana tucked inside his sweatshirt.

A 24-year-old woman who was working behind the counter of Tejada Grocery told investigators that the unknown man approached her shortly after 9:15am and demanded money and cigarettes.

The suspect held his right hand inside his sweatshirt, acting as though he had a handgun in his pocket, the woman told police. After watching store surveillance video, investigators determined the man actually picked up a banana from the counter and stuffed it inside his shirt, simulating a weapon.

YouTube link.

He fled on a bicycle after taking an undetermined amount of cash. The suspect is described as a 5-foot-9-inch- to 5-foot-11-inch-tall, thin black male weighing about 140 pounds. He was last seen wearing black pants and a tan hooded sweatshirt with “Pacific Coast Hollister 19” written on the front in red lettering.

Family find cross with face of Jesus in fallen tree

A famiily from Liberty in Texas believe they've been touched by God, and they say the proof is in their backyard. The Gillards say it all began when a storm caused a dead oak tree behind their house to collapse. Their 7-year-old granddaughter first noticed what the downed tree resembled.

"Something told me there was something on that tree. I just looked, and took a good look, and I was like, there's a cross," explained Kelsie Gillard. Kelsie Gillard couldn't wait to tell her grandmother. "All of a sudden, she says look, there's a cross," recalled Deena Gillard. "I think it's absolutely a gift." Deena Gillard says there's no disputing that what's left of the tree looks like a cross.

The devout Christian calls it a sign from above. According to Gillard, the tree fell down on the three year anniversary of her dad's death to the day. "It's a sign. I'm telling you, it's a sign," said Deena Gillard. The more her husband stared at the snapped tree from their porch, he noticed something more distinct. "It is the face of Jesus Christ," said Larry Gillard.

"Some people say I'm nuts or think I'm nuts, but I welcome them to come up here and sit and witness it for their own belief." Larry Gillard says the image becomes more clear as the sun goes down. "The eyes become plain and clear. You can see the beard starting to form," said Gillard. "The crown of thorns appears around the top of the head." The family says they won't be touching the tree or doing anything to it. They're now planning on building a fence around it for protection.

There's a news video here.

Indian High Court judges unimpressed with civic agencies Photoshop skills

The South Municipal Corporation and the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) were left red-faced on Wednesday after the Delhi High Court found that some of the photographs of potholed roads and pavements filed as part of a status report listing details of a clean-up operation in Dwarka were “photoshopped”. “You just ordered a cursory clean-up and this picture is photoshopped,” noted the court of Justice Badar Durrez Ahmed and Justice Siddharth Mridul, after perusing the affidavits submitted by the civic agencies.

The court had earlier directed the South corporation and the DDA to fill in potholes and clean up rubbish from the roadside and empty plots in Dwarka. The direction came after a public interest litigation filed by two law students. The court had also directed the two agencies to take pictures of the same areas which were photographed by the petitioners and submitted as “proof”. On Wednesday, petitioner Ebbani Aggarwal told the court that “nothing had been done” by the civic agencies to clean up Dwarka Subcity.

On close examination of the photographs filed by the agencies, the court found that at least one picture of Dwarka Sector-4 market and two pictures of the Dwarka Sector-13 Metro station parking were photoshopped. “Somebody has tried to brush up these photographs… is this not touched up?” the court said. “You are trying to shield your officers? This is a lesson in how to fudge records,” the judge said. The DDA counsel Arjun Pant and South corporation counsel Ajay Arora then claimed that the cameraman had used a dirty lens.

To this Justice B D Ahmed commented, “I can tell you how this picture has been touched up. If the lens was dirty, the spots would appear in the same place, but your spots keep changing. These are clearly photoshopped,” he said. The agency also claimed that they had not only cleaned up the roads but had also removed litter, filth, rubbish, solid waste and remains of construction material from empty plots and planted saplings there. “If you had planted anything at all, there would be some greenery visible by now. If you leave the lot empty, someone will encroach upon it,” the court said. The court then directed the South corporation and the DDA to clean up the area properly and submit fresh photographs within two weeks.

Record playing dog caused gas leak alert

A dog in the Upper Austrian town of Marchtrenk prompted an emergency call to the fire brigade after turning on a record player in the middle of the night while its mistress slept.

The elderly woman raised the alarm after mistaking the noise of the record player for a leaking gas line. The flat owner woke up during the night after hearing a hissing noise, which she feared was a gas leak.

Because the sound was louder just near the entrance door to her flat, she dared not go out into the stairwell. Several other residents were also worried by the strange noise and eventually the fire brigade was called.

The fire crew soon discovered the source of the disturbing hissing, which came from an old speaker by the woman's front door amplifying the sound of the needle at the end of the record. According to the fire brigade, the dog's paws were particularly suitable for operating the record player buttons.

Police seek to identify man who subtlely attempted to steal painting from art gallery

Birmingham Police have released CCTV footage of the attempted theft of a piece of art from a city centre gallery in a bid to identify the culprit.

A young man is seen attempting to conceal a large frame in his clothing, however the artwork is far too large and eagle eyed staff stopped him outside the gallery where he handed the piece back and walked off. The attempted theft happened just before 5pm on Sunday 17 August in Castle Fine Art Gallery on Broad Street.

Investigating officer, PC Patrick Higgins said: "The thief was quite optimistic in his attempts to conceal the artwork, valued at several hundred pounds, but fortunately he made off empty handed.

YouTube link.

"We are now keen to identify the man in the CCTV to prevent him from turning his attention to smaller objects." Police are appealing for anyone who recognises the man to call them or alternatively information can be given anonymously to Crimestoppers.

Thursday, September 18, 2014


The Diatomist

A short documentary by Matthew Killip, an English filmmaker now living in New York, about Klaus Kemp, one of the last practitioners of the Victorian art of Diatom arrangement.

Vimeo link.

Diatoms are tiny microscopic plankton that create intricate glass shells around themselves which the Victorians used to arrange into beautiful patterns.

Klaus Kemp has devoted his entire life to understanding and perfecting diatom arrangement and he is now acknowledged as the last great practitioner of this combination of art and science. The Diatomist showcases his incredible work.

Scotland decides

The background to today's Scottish independence referendum as depicted by the Taiwanese Animators. Comes complete with dodgy Scottish accent.

YouTube link.

How does a sheep cross a cattle grid?

It's easy when you know how.

YouTube link.

Pedicab driver arrested after being found passed out with snake wrapped around his neck

A pedicab driver was discovered in downtown San Diego early on Tuesday morning passed out with a live snake wrapped around his neck.

According to San Diego police, the man was discovered by a group of friends at about 2am slumped over in the cab in the centre of the road in the Gaslamp District. As they approached him, he tried to cycle away backwards.

The witnesses contacted police, who arrived and determined the man was wearing a GPS bracelet on his ankle and appeared under the influence of drugs. Travis Elsner-Young, 27, was arrested, accused of riding a bicycle under the influence.

SDPD contacted San Diego County Animal Services who said the 18-inch snake was not in good condition. The snake, a ball python was taken to an emergency veterinarian to be treated for starvation, dehydration and anemia, Animal Services says. The reptile will stay in the hospital until further notice.

Woman charged with lit cigarette and spatula attack on buttocks

An woman from Easthampton, Massachusetts, was charged with assault and battery on Tuesday for allegedly burning a Westfield woman’s right buttock with a lit cigarette and striking her left buttock with a spatula.

The 18-year-old was arrested by Westfield police Monday. She was released on her own recognizance after posting $100 bail.

The woman was charged with two counts of assault and battery on a person older than 14, as well as assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

According to reports: On Sept. 12, the aggressor confessed to burning a 20-year-old woman on the left buttock with a lit cigarette, as well as hitting her right buttock with a cooking spatula. The spatula’s head left a solid red impression on the victim’s skin. The victim was passed out at the time of the incident.

Skunk with head stuck in beer can rescued

A skunk found with a beer can stuck on its head outside a fraternity house in Ohio has been rescued.

Police in Oxford responded to the unusual call to find the mammal blindly banging into shrubs outside the house. An animal control officer was able to free the skunk without getting sprayed, Sergeant Jon Varley said.

"One of our public safety assistants (animal control officer) was able to remove the can without being 'skunked'," he said. The skunk was then released. Varley says police in the city have received calls before about skunks and other wild animals.

But he says this was the first one he knew of that had to be rescued from a beer can. Oxford is home to Miami University, about 35 miles northwest of Cincinnati.

Health concerns after thieves steal 1.3 tonnes of potentially deadly cheese

Investigators in Liechtenstein are probing the theft of 1.3 tonnes of cheese that was set to be destroyed because it contained dangerous bacteria.

The country’s food inspection office is concerned the bad cheese will be sold either directly or indirectly, posing a health risk to anyone who consumes it. The problem is the “Alp Sücka” cheese was found to be contaminated with listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium that causes listeriosis, a potentially deadly infection.

Liechtenstein’s food office had banned the cheese but during a check discovered that 236 five-kilogram wheels of the dairy product had gone missing. They were probably stolen from open containers where they were stored temporarily before planned destruction.

The country’s prosecutor has launched an investigation into the cheese’s disappearance. Listeriosis is particularly dangerous for elderly people and pregnant women. The Liechtenstein food inspection office has issued a warning for people to avoid eating Alp Sücka cheeses sold after September 9th.

Booby trap covered traffic officer in manure as he was trying to catch people speeding

A traffic officer in Austria got more than he bargained for after a booby trap covered him from head-to-toe in manure as he was trying to catch people speeding, police said on Tuesday.

A bucket containing the slurry exploded three metres from the officer after he triggered a trip wire at a site often used for speed traps, police in the southern state of Carinthia said. The 58-year-old was not hurt and police said the device was likely designed by an irate motorist to humiliate officers rather than cause injury.

But they were nonetheless not amused. "What could have happened if the officer had been nearer the explosives, or if a child had set it off? It doesn't bear thinking about," spokesman Rainer Dionisio said. Police said that a detonator in a bucket of manure was connected to a fishing line, which triggered the trap when the traffic police officer visited the location near the Mölltal state highway.

The site is commonly used by police for laser-based speed monitoring. A garden spade and garden gloves were leaning against the bucket containing the bovine excrement. The force of the explosion destroyed the garden tool's wooden handle. Fortunately, the officer was sufficiently far from the explosive that he was not injured, but his uniform was covered with manure.

Stuck deer rescued from metal railings

A roe deer has been rescued after it got stuck between the metal railings of a fence in Inverness. A member of the public spotted the animal in distress at Cradlehall Meadows on Wednesday.

The Scottish SPCA said its officers were able to free the adult deer from the fence without causing it any injury. During the rescue operation a towel was put over the animal's head in an effort to calm it down.

Animal rescue officer Clare Anderson said: "A lady had spotted the deer running out of a field and straight into the fence. "It's possible he may have taken fright as he ran into the gate with force and became stuck."

The Scottish SPCA officer added: "It took us around 20 minutes to get him out as we had to lift his body at an angle and move one hip through at a time. After checking he wasn't hurt, we released him into a wooded area where there are other deer. We're glad we were able to help him out as it must have been quite an uncomfortable experience."