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Oddities News Archive - December 30, 2008

Canada's public broadcaster is asking listeners to come up with 49 Canadian songs to air as a welcome when Barack Obama becomes U.S. president next month. Beginning Jan. 5, listeners can submit songs to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp.

Wisconsin officials say they are ironing out glitches on a state Web site, particularly an image that shows the Capitol --- with a Minneapolis skyline. A state senator checking on the campaign-finance site noticed that the picture of Madison didn't really look Madisonian, and a little digging revealed the skyline was actually that of the Minnesota city. I'm looking at that thinking, what the heck? State Sen.

Facing eviction, 96-year-old Editta Sherman says she'll have to be dragged out of the apartment she's lived in above New York's Carnegie Hall since 1946. They'll have to use their bare hands, Sherman told The New York Post in a story published Tuesday. Sherman, a portrait photographer, lives in a rent-controlled, $530-a-month studio that Carnegie Hall wants to turn into office space as part of a $150 million overall building renovation. Sherman's grand apartment has floor-to-ceiling windows, black-and-white checkered floor tiles and a cast-iron staircase, the Post reported, noting Sherman has photographed Andy Warhol, Henry Fonda, Eva Gabor and Paul Newman. My memories of people I've photographed are here, said Sherman who has rejected Carnegie's offer to find her a similar apartment in the neighborhood and to pay any differential in rent for the remainder of her life.

A 28-year-old Tampa, Fla., man says he hopes to convince prospective employers of his ingenuity by auctioning his resume on eBay. Matt Johnson, whose background is in marketing, was laid off last month from a consulting firm in the Tampa area, where unemployment rates are near 8 percent. Johnson said he sent out hundreds of resumes before turning to eBay as a way to stand out, The St.

An Indian national who had overstayed her British visa responded to a call for jury duty, although she was not selected for a trial, officials said. Narinder Kaur Thandi, who has been living in Britain since 2000, had been warned that she might be deported when she received a summons for jury duty in Birmingham Crown Court, The Sun reported. Narinder thought it would help her stay in the U.K.

A Portland, Ore., car wash worker used what he calls his quick draw on the spray gun to foil a would-be robber who ran off after getting a hose-down. Chris B.

A Stokesby, England, man said local officials have threatened him with legal action for allowing noisy roosters to live in a tree in his back garden. Roger Popay, 65, said he received a letter from Yarmouth Borough Council informing him that he could be taken to court for violating the Environmental Protection Act of 1990 by letting the fowl roost in his tree, The Daily Telegraph reported Tuesday. The letter said the council had received complaints about the early-morning noise from roaming chickens. However, Popay said the young roosters are free-roaming birds that have taken up residence in his tree without his approval. No one knows where they came from and who they belong to, Popay said.

Police in Middletown, N.Y., said three alleged car-strippers were caught in the act and arrested after one of them accidentally dialed 911 on a cell phone. Investigators said one of the thieves inadvertently dialed the emergency number while the phone was in his pocket and a dispatcher overheard the three alleged thieves -- identified as Andre Pryce, Fabian Croley and Xavier Jenkins -- talking about taking the car's tires, the New York Post reported Tuesday. The criminals actually called the police department accidentally and conversations were heard by the dispatcher, Middletown Sgt.

A Jacksonville, Fla., 8-year-old gathered signatures on a petition and wrote a letter to the mayor after her neighbor's cat was taken away, her mother said. Brianna Davey said the cat was taken by Animal Control officers after her neighbors allowed it roam outside without a leash, WJXT-TV, Jacksonville, Fla., reported Tuesday. The third-grader wrote in her letter to Mayor John Peyton that although the cat was not wearing a leash, it was not running wild. Other neighbors complained, Brianna wrote.

Firefighters in Pennsylvania said they used an industrial-strength vacuum to pull a Shih Tzu puppy out of an abandoned well. Plum Borough Assistant Fire Chief Jim Scuffle said the dog, owned the Palombo family, fell down the well during the weekend and firefighters tried to rescue the pet for three hours without success, WPXI-TV, Pittsburgh, reported Tuesday. Eventually, we hooked up an industrial-strength vacuum and sized it down to about 1 inch.

Word of the Day
monteith
  • A large punch-bowl of the eighteenth century, usually of silver and with a movable rim, and decorated with flutings and a scalloped edge. It was also used for cooling and carrying wine-glasses.
  • A kind of cotton handkerchief having white spots on a colored ground, the spots being produced by a chemical which discharges the color.
This word is possibly named after Monteith (Monteigh), 'an eccentric 17th-century Scotsman who wore a cloak scalloped at the hem.'
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