Oddities News Archive - January 12, 2009


An Australian snorkeler who punched a shark that attacked him south of Sydney was in stable condition Monday, doctors said.

A 107-year-old woman in the Chinese city of Chongqing says she is looking to get married for the first time in her life. Wang Guiying said at her advanced age she is growing increasingly concerned that time is running out on her chance at finding a husband, The Sun (Britain) reported Monday. I'm already 107 and I still haven't got married, Wang said.

The Florida Marlins announced they are bringing back their all-male dance team for the 2009 season and are seeking their most enthusiastic plus-sized fans. Marlins officials said the success of the Marlins' Manatees during the 2008 season led them to decide to continue into the 2009 season, and auditions for the largest men with the best dance moves will be held Jan.

A British man said he has found a gold sovereign, worth about $222, that was lost on his farm more than 100 years ago. Alan Booton, 64, said he heard a story about a previous occupant of the Greatham, England, farm losing the coin, which was a gift for his daughter's wedding, in 1907, The Times of London reported Monday. Booton said he found the lost coin with the help of metal detecting enthusiast John Forster.

A Rubik's Cube enthusiast in Britain said he has finally solved his puzzle after struggling with it for 26 years. Graham Parker of Portchester, England, said he first bought his Rubik's Cube in 1983 and has since spent more than 27,400 hours struggling with the colored cube puzzle, The Daily Telegraph reported Monday. I cannot tell you what a relief it was to finally solve it.

The owner of a Chicago hair salon said it has seen a dramatic spike in business since it changed its name from Ossama's to Obama's. Mike Elsheikh said his Ossama's Hair Design in downtown Chicago marked a sharp decrease in business after the Sept.

Guards at a British prison said a model helicopter that was spotted flying over the facility at night is believed to have been delivering drugs to prisoners. The guards said the helicopter, which was carrying a small package believed to contain the drugs, was spotted by security cameras at Elmley Prison in Sheerness, England, over the accommodation blocks, which are not locked at night and allow prisoners access to the grounds, The Sun reported Monday. Using a mini-helicopter to get contraband into jails is unprecedented, a prison source said.

British developer Abel Homes said the model home at its latest development comes with one very realistic detail -- a messy teenager's room. Maggie Abel, director of Abel Homes, said she based the teenager's room at the Old Catton, England, model home on her own son's room when he was a teen 10 years ago, The Daily Mail reported Monday. I've always found show homes are a bit bland and unreal, so we decided to create something that was more true to life, Abel said.

Australian officials are seeking applicants to fill a dream job that includes swimming, sailing and living rent-free in a villa with a pool. Anthony Hayes, chief executive of Tourism Queensland, said the agency is searching for someone willing to spend six months on the tropical Hamilton Island while blogging and posting pictures and videos to draw tourists to the area, the BBC reported Monday. Hayes said the caretaker, who would be paid $103,000 for six months, would also be charged with feeding some of the island's exotic fish and collecting mail addressed to the island. It doesn't sound too bad does it? We are looking for someone to tell the stories of the Great Barrier Reef and we have come up with what we think is the dream job, Hayes said. There are hundreds of islands scattered along the Great Barrier Reef, he said.

A British chocolate maker said a new warning label will inform consumers of milk content in milk chocolate, even though milk is in the candy's name. Cadbury said the famous Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate bar -- which lists milk first on the ingredients list and explains that the bars contain the equivalent of three quarters of a pint of fresh liquid milk in every half pound of milk chocolate -- will soon bear an additional message reading CONTAINS: MILK, Sky News reported Monday. A spokesman for Cadbury said the warning is aimed at complying with laws that govern the presence of allergens in food. However, Moira Austin, helpline manager for the Anaphylaxis Campaign food allergy support group, said Cadbury is merely stating the blindingly obvious. The law requires manufacturers to list allergens if they are an ingredient.

Word of the Day
  • A young chicken: also used as a pet name for children.
The word 'chickabiddy' may come from 'chick' plus 'biddy', a name used in calling a hen or chicken.