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Oddities News Archive - March 10, 2009

A soon-to-be-married Cincinnati couple want any and all wedding donations to go toward building the city's proposed streetcar system. We thought that we should do something that was kind of near and dear to our hearts, said Kristen Myers, 29, a civil litigation lawyer, who is marrying Chris Heckman, 30, an industrial lawyer, on Saturday. The couple, who live, work and are to be married downtown, said they thought making a small dent in the downtown streetcar project's $185 million price tag was better than asking for a toaster or linens, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Tuesday.

For the second time in eight years, a Toronto sculptor's aluminum penguin has been stolen, thousands of miles from the site of the first theft in Canada. Yolanda vanderGaast created three of the 3-foot Emperor penguin sculptures in 2001, which entrepreneur and philanthropist Louis Odette purchased and donated to the southwestern Ontario city of Windsor. One of the penguins was stolen, and despite a well-publicized police media blitz and divers scouring the Detroit River, it was never found, the Windsor Star reported. Last Saturday, another vanderGaast penguin was stolen from outside the London School of Economics in England.

Police in central Illinois said they were called to a McDonald's eatery after a customer allegedly threw a breakfast sandwich at an employee. Investigators said the man pulled up to the drive-through window of the Peoria McDonald's at about 5:20 a.m.

An Oregon casino said a woman won a record-setting $5 million from a $4 bet on a slot machine after less than an hour at the casino. A spokesman for the Three Rivers Casino and Hotel in Florence said the Hillsboro, Ore., woman had been playing the Penny Wheel of Fortune machine, which is networked to

Police in Florida said they have arrested a man who allegedly offered a store owner $69 for a Klondike bar after he allegedly tried to leave without paying. Investigators said the owner of the Fort Pierce Food Mart/Texaco noticed Richard Cram, 65, walking suspiciously inside the store March 3, TCPalm.com reported. The store owner said Cram pulled about 99 cents worth of Raman noodles and 49 cents worth of Famous Amos cookies out of his pockets and threw the items onto a shelf after the owner approached him.

Police in Florida said a man accused of drug possession and leaving the scene of a crash allegedly tried to buy drugs with fake money. Investigators said Eric Bruen, 29, was pulled over Saturday by Stuart Police after they noticed that his car was severely damaged and could not stay inside a lane, TCPalm.com reported Tuesday. Police found four rocks of crack cocaine in is car and thee rocks of the drug in his shirt pocket. Bruen had allegedly tried to purchase drugs earlier Saturday but the transaction was cut short when the dealer realized that Bruen was offering fake money, police said.

Authorities in Pennsylvania said a man pleaded guilty to indecent exposure after he emerged naked from his home and challenged his neighbors to a karate fight. Gary Jones, 47, pleaded guilty to a first-degree misdemeanor charge.

A 19-year-old Swedish woman said the country's National Tax Agency has rejected her application to change her middle name to Dark Knight. Sofia Englundh, 19, from the Stockholm suburb of Vallingby, said the board blocked her attempt to rename herself Sophia Dark Knight after last year's Batman film The Dark Knight, which earned a posthumous Oscar for actor Heath Ledger, The Local reported Tuesday. I love the film and the actors, Christian Bale and Heath Ledger, Sofia Englundh said.Also I don't have a middle name and thought it might be nice. The agency's guidelines state that names can be rejected if they are considered offensive, include profanity or describe genitalia. I can understand if it is offensive, but this is just the name of a film.

A Portland, Ore., artist said an XOXO sign posted near the Hawthorne Bridge is meant to set a positive tone for commuters on their way to work downtown. Ilan Laks, 36, who posted the message on a low-rise building near the bridge just before Valentine's Day, said his creation is designed to bring a little love into the morning rituals of commuters, The (Portland) Oregonian reported Tuesday. I want people to feel a little better before they get downtown and start thrashing around looking for parking, Laks said. The opposite side of the sign, which is geared toward commuters heading home for the day, bears a similarly brief message: Dream. People are leaving downtown and heading home to sleep, Laks said.

Authorities in New Jersey said three men accused of burglary allegedly used raw hot dogs to distract the homeowner's pet Labrador. Somerset County Prosecutor Wayne Forrest said Ronald Elizondo, 20, Adrian McCoy and Tyshiune Haskins, both 18, were arrested after they allegedly stole three shotguns, two rifles, three handguns, ammunition and other valuable items from a home in Bridgewater, The (Newark) New Jersey Star-Ledger reported Tuesday. Forrest said police found raw hot dogs in the home after the March 3 burglary and determined that the meat had been used to distract the resident's dog during the burglary.

Word of the Day
caparison
  • A cloth or covering, more or less ornamented, laid over the saddle or furniture of a horse, especially of a sumpter-horse or horse of state.
  • Clothing, especially sumptuous clothing; equipment; outfit.
  • To cover with a caparison, as a horse.
  • To dress sumptuously; adorn with rich dress.
This word ultimately comes from the Medieval Latin 'cappa,' cloak.
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