Oddities News Archive - March 22, 2009

A florist shop in southern England is haunted by its past as a purveyor of adult DVDs and sex toys -- every morning when the front window mists up. Clare Ross, owner of Willows, told The Telegraph she sponges the window every morning when the words licensed sex shop appear on the wet glass over the Interflora sign.

Google executives say the missing British street scenes in its mapping service were deleted after requests from the public. Spokeswoman Laura Scott said a small percentage of images have been taken off the U.K. version of Street View after folks registered complaints. The British Broadcasting Corp.

A fossilized skeleton of a 150-million-year-old dinosaur failed to earn its minimum asking price at a New York auction, a gallery official says. Jake Chait of the Natural History Museum's I.M. Chait Gallery blamed the struggling U.S.

A 23-year-old British college student says she's incorporating her hubby hunt into a work of art called The Husband Project. Alex Humphrey says her efforts to find a spouse will form part of her degree from Leeds College of Art and Design.

Disability activists say they're backing a British mother given a $145 parking ticket when she stopped to revive her severely disabled son. Penny Batkin, 40, was taking her son, Freddie, 4, to a hospice in Hampton when he began gasping for breath and turning blue, said Richmond Aid, a charity for people with disabilities. Batkin incurred the ticket by illegally stopping her car on the pavement to resuscitate him.

Chicago chef Didier Durand, an outspoken proponent of foie gras, says he would like to create a museum dedicated to the controversial delicacy. The Cyrano's Bistrot chef said he will use a section of his restaurant for an exhibit about the history of foie gras, which is fattened liver taken from ducks or geese that have been force-fed, the Chicago Tribune reported Sunday. God created that delicacy, but he never created a ban for it, Durand said. But People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals official Bruce Friedrich said Durand's museum plan represents nothing more than an honor to animal cruelty. Durand scoffs at such animal cruelty claims. What's next? Frog legs? Durand asked the Tribune.

A 41-year-old Cuban refugee living in Miami says he retrofitted a fluorescent green pickup truck to honor a failed Florida Straits crossing. Luis Grass said the truck pays homage to a pickup he used in an attempt to float a group of Cuban refugees from their native land to the shores of the United States, The Miami Herald reported Sunday. ''My dream was to build a replica of the truck that was used in the first attempt, to keep it as a museum piece.

South Florida residents turned in 102 animals as part of Non-native Pet Amnesty Day with pets ranging from pythons to albino catfish, state officials say. State Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials said dozens of snakes were handed over as part of the unwanted pets program, along with

Word of the Day
  • Stoppage; cessation (of labor).
  • A standing still or idling (of mills, factories, etc.).
The word chomage comes into English from French.]