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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

Oddities News Archive - February 19, 2009

Garibaldi is normally a mild-mannered steed but threw his French Republican Guard rider and took off through the streets of Paris. The 15-year-old horse galloped through several intersections late Wednesday morning with police cars trailing him, the BBC reported.

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt has declined an artist's offer to have his chest tattooed with a design featuring a Viking-style ship. Reinfeldt wrote to Gavle artist Sebastian Norde, 22, who previously sent the prime minister his proposed tattoo design and a letter explaining how the body ink would help the prime minister's popularity among the country's young people, The Local reported Thursday. Thanks for your letter, Reinfeldt wrote.

Authorities in New York state said an 80-year-old pilot's plane taxied out of control on his property and cut across a cornfield before hitting an apple tree. Genesee County sheriff's deputies said John Sackett Jr., 80, spun the propeller to start the two-seater 1945 Ercoupe plane on the small airstrip on his property and was revving the engine from outside the cockpit when the vehicle jumped a wooden block that was keeping its wheels in place and taxied out of control, The Buffalo (N.Y.) News reported Thursday. Deputies said Sackett wasn't injured and the plane incurred minor wing damage when it came to rest after hitting the tree, the News said.

Police in Kansas City, Mo., said a woman's tight hair weave stopped a bullet, rescuing her from injury and likely saving her life. Officers said they arrived at the Country View Market at about 11:30 p.m.

Traffic was shut down at a portion of Memphis International Airport after police confused a sticker for punk band This Bike is a Pipe Bomb for a real threat. An airport police officer spotted a bike bearing the sticker outside of the airport's Terminal C Monday night and the owner of the bicycle was detained and searched by authorities before being released, the Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal reported Thursday. Stickers for This Bike is a Pipe Bomb have caused similar incidents at Ohio University in March 2006 and in Washington in 2003. Ryan Modee, lead singer of the band, told the News Journal he was at work when he heard about the latest incident. I was at work and just kind of freaked out, he said.

Authorities in Florida said a fleeing burglary suspect was arrested after he tripped over his own fallen pants. The Escambia County Sheriff's Office said a deputy responded to an alarm at Beer City in Pensacola, Fla., at about midnight Tuesday and saw a suspect fleeing through the smashed front door of the business with several packs of cigarettes in his arms, the Pensacola News-Journal reported Thursday. The office said the suspect's armloads of cigarettes prevented him from holding up his sagging pants, causing the trousers to fall and trip the suspect. Sheriff's Office spokesman Sgt.

Police in Massachusetts said an argument about manners allegedly led to a golf club attack on a man at a gas station. Investigators said the 50-year-old victim allegedly held the door open for Carlos Navarro, 38, at the Hess gas station in Falmouth and sarcastically said thank you when Navarro failed to thank him for holding the door, the Cape Cod (Mass.) Times reported Thursday. Navarro told police he felt insulted by the comment and a heated argument ensued between the men.

A Chinese man said he caught a 6-pound rat the size of a cat by its 12-inch tail in a residential area of the city of Fuzhou. The man, identified only as Xian, said he caught the gargantuan rodent after seeing a group of people crowding around it, The Daily Telegraph reported Thursday. Xian said he

Texas authorities said a high-speed chase ended Thursday when the driver stopped to pay a toll near Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. Police said Sandra Stephens-Foster, 60, sped away from an officer during a traffic stop at about 3:30 a.m.

A Missouri family says the credit crunch has forced them to put up for sale the 17,000-square-foot home they created in a cave. Curt Sleeper told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch he and his family, like so many others, are victims of the credit crunch.