Oddities News Archive - November 30, 2004


Rhonda Gaynier, a New York real-estate lawyer, was flying home from Tampa, Fla., and passing through airport security when she was asked to step aside for additional screening. What happened next shocked her: Using an open hand, a security agent touched her on her shoulders, under her arms, around her waist, across her bra strap, and between her breasts, Gaynier said - all in front of other passengers.

ST. LOUIS - Two weeks since serving up its Monster Thickburger packing 1,420 calories and 107 grams of fat, Hardee's looks to beef up sales with a new multimillion-dollar ad campaign. Some may wonder whether that's even needed, given the St.

LAUSANNE, Switzerland - Even employees of the famously punctual Swiss railroads can miss a train. Last week, a train left the station at Aigle, in the French-speaking west of Switzerland, without its conductor and with its doors wide open, the Swiss railroad company confirmed Tuesday.

LOS ANGELES - A gallstone the size of a golf ball - about 16 times the size of a normal one - has been removed from a 56-year-old man, doctors say. The massive growth was the result of a stent inadvertently left in his body from a pancreatic operation more than a decade ago.

PHILADELPHIA - At the start of the holiday shopping season, The Philadelphia Inquirer inadvertently offered an early bird special of its own. The early edition of Sunday's Inquirer, which is published on Saturday, was mistakenly priced at 50 cents instead of the usual $1.50.

EASTLAKE, Ohio - Don't blame the Grinch or Ebenezer Scrooge if this northeast Ohio city isn't quite as jolly and bright for Christmases to come. City officials say money - or a lack of it - is causing them to put costly holiday decorations up for sale.

TOWER, Minn. - You betcha it gets cold up here, but how will we know how cold this year? This small northeastern Minnesota town that recorded the state's record low in 1996 - a pretty nippy 60 degrees below zero - is without an official weather observer.

LA VISTA, Neb. - A joke a man played on his mom went to pot. A 22-year-old man walked into a gas station on Sunday and told the clerk that he had a gun. The clerk wasn't worried because she was his mother.

PITTSBURGH - A man who botched the castration of a transgendered woman will spend the next three years on probation. "I have no intention of doing this again to animals or humans," Douglas Lenhart, 49, told Allegheny County Judge John Zottola on Monday. "I'm completely out of this.

SAN RAFAEL, Calif. - Firefighters rescued dozens of squealing pigs Sunday night as they extinguished a fire in a pig sty near a garbage dump. Two piglets died, while dozens of others were rescued in the fire. The fire burned a pig shelter near Marin Sanitary Service's Marin Resource Recovery Center.

Word of the Day
  • The governor of a province or people.
The word 'ethnarch' comes from a Greek word meaning 'ruler of a tribe or nation'.