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Oddities News Archive - April 13, 2009

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A Canadian emu farmer in northwestern Nova Scotia said he is concerned a proposed windmill nearby will kill his birds or trigger his epileptic seizures.

The director of a suburban Chicago public library says her facility will not admit visitors whose personal body odor interferes with others' activities. Schaumburg Township District Library Director Stephanie Sarnoff said the decision to add offensive body odors to the library's list of prohibitions was based on complaints from library guests regarding a homeless person, the Chicago Tribune said Monday. People who use libraries are usually very understanding about the foibles of others, she said.

Wearing low pants that expose boxer shorts is a constitutionally protected expression of identity, say opponents of a saggy pants ban in Riviera Beach, Fla. Palm Beach County public defenders are challenging a law passed last year by more than 70 percent of voters that makes it illegal to wear pants low enough to show skin or underwear, The New York Times reported Monday. Twenty young men in Riviera have been charged under the ordinance and have cases pending, the Times reported, noting other cities, including Lynwood, Ill.; and Flint, Mich., have similar bans. Public defenders in Riviera Beach argue the ban violates freedom of expression and has focused exclusively on young black men.

A Mississippi State University professor said a survey of students suggests eloquent is a beautiful word while vomit is ugly. Robert Wolverton Sr., a classics professor at the school, said his annual survey asks students to submit words that they consider to be beautiful or ugly. This year's survey, which involved 75 students, yielded 148 beautiful words, including eloquent, which was submitted by six students; love, which was chosen by four students; symphony, which received four submissions; and beautiful, which was chosen by three respondents. The students also submitted 138 ugly words, including six mentions for vomit, five submissions for moist, five mentions for puke and four for ugly. Wolverton said fewer students chose religious words as beautiful than in previous years.

A Canadian family gathered for Easter weekend outside the capital, Ottawa, had an unexpected guest when a 25-pound wild turkey smashed through a window. Gerry Moore told the Ottawa Sun a neighbor called to say there was a female wild turkey strutting through his backyard midday Saturday.

Workers at Denver's Downtown Aquarium said the facility's three 4-year-old tigers celebrated Easter by hunting eggs filled with raw meat and whipped cream. Alison Cronk, the tigers' trainer, said the meat and whipped cream was wrapped in paper mache eggs glued with flour and water before being hidden in the tiger habitat, The Denver Post reported Monday. We have no idea why they like the whipped cream, she said.

A 78-year-old woman who was banned from a Monroe, Wis., senior center said she is suing to be allowed back into the facility. Edith Milestone, 78, alleges in her lawsuit against the city-owned Behring Senior Center that it violated her free speech rights in October by kicking her out for complaining about how a card game was being scored, the (Madison) Wisconsin State Journal reported Monday. The suit also alleges that the center's code of conduct is too broad and vague. Center Director Tammy Derrickson said in an Oct.

The special events director for the new Dallas Cowboys stadium said non-football events scheduled for the new facility include three wedding receptions. Gail Grogan said several hundred events have been scheduled for the next few years, including corporate meetings, birthday parties and a charity fun run, the Fort Worth (Texas) Star-Telegram reported Monday. We think of the stadium as a five-star property, Grogan said.

Police in Chicago said a dead goat was found hanging Monday from a statue of late Cubs announcer Harry Caray outside Wrigley Field. Town Hall District police said they found the goat hanging from a rope tied to one of the statue's outstretched arms at about 2:40 a.m.

A North Carolina man said a clerical error following a paternity test nearly resulted in his making child support payments for a child that he did not father. Charles Moody, 44, of Raleigh, said he took the paternity test after an ex-girlfriend claimed he was the father of her child and he became suspicious of her claim because of the time line of the baby's birth, the Raleigh (N.C.) News & Observer reported Monday. However, Moody said he was prepared to start child support payments after Wake County Child Support Enforcement sent him a letter reading: Enclosed is a copy of the paternity test result which shows a probability of 99.99 percent that you are the biological father. Moody said he eventually double-checked the letter and discovered that the test results, which were stapled to the letter, stated that the results indicate that Charles Moody is not the biological father. Moody said he contacted the department and received another letter five days later saying that the case h

Word of the Day
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'