Oddities News Archive - August 11, 2009

Amidst blowing shofars and trumpets, religious Jewish dignitaries took to Israel's skies and prayed that no more Israelis die from the H1N1 virus. Yedioth Aharonoth reported Tuesday the group of 50, including rabbis, religious scholars and yeshiva students, recited special prayers and blew shofars (ram's horns) and trumpets seven times during the flight Monday.

A 92-year old Holocaust survivor who lived on the streets of New York bequeathed $150,000 to Jerusalem's Hebrew University, the university Web site said. Yefet Ozery of the university's Development and Public Relations department received a check from the woman's executor last week, the site said.

An 87-year-old Florida woman thought she was picking up a stick; instead, it was a baby pygmy rattlesnake and it bit her, her granddaughter said. Ester Orrino of Hunters Green killed the rattler.

Police in Spokane, Wash., say a bachelor party brawl resulted in the groom-to-be and two friends being carted away to jail. Sgt.

A California millionaire paid for a banner to be flown over a beach after seeing former Indiana Pacer Reggie Miller hitting on his girlfriend, sources said. Multiple sources told the New York Post that Alex von Furstenberg, 38, arranged for a plane to fly over beaches Saturday in Malibu and Santa Monica while trailing a banner reading: Reggie Miller Stop Pursuing Married Women! The unmarried woman in question, von Furstenberg's 25-year-old fiancee, Ali Kay, sent two provocative photos to Miller during a flirtation that lasted for three months, said Marty Singer, Miller's lawyer. This is a ridiculous and absurd story about a single girl who exchanged text messages with Reggie Miller, Singer said. He said the two had only met twice, and briefly, but started frequently exchanging messages via phone in March. I was very upset about Reggie's behavior towards my fiancee, von Furstenberg said.

A British grandmother said she is not to blame for losing her engagement ring -- it was snatched by a hungry piglet with a taste for diamonds. Anne Moon, who has worn the ring since her now-husband gave it to her 30 years ago, said she was petting a 10-week-old Kune Kune piglet at the Easingwold Maize Maze Farm, near York, England, when the swine used its mouth to slip off her beloved jewel, The Sun reported Tuesday. I've never been in such close contact with a pig before so I put my hand out flat to let it have a sniff, she said.

A Cincinnati couple who marked their 75th anniversary Tuesday said the secret to their long marriage is never going to bed angry. Walter Shroyer, 94, and Thelma Wiesman, 93, said their entire marriage had had a strict policy of resolving arguments before bedtime, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Tuesday. If

A Utah ice cream maker is apparently banking on children's propensity to disobey the advice of their parents by inviting them to eat Yellow Snow. Shawn McLennan said he began making his own ice cream about six or seven years ago and gave it to friends and at parties, calling it Yellow Snow brand ice cream -- and now the enterprise has grown to include his own ice cream shop in Park City called Yellow Snow Ice Cream and Coffee, The Park City (Utah) Record Reported Tuesday. McLennan, who offers 14 flavors of frozen treats, said his ice cream differs from the competition by undergoing the same process used for fancier desserts such as gelato and sorbet.

A 9-year-old Washington state boy said it took him almost an hour to land a 150-pound sixgill shark while fishing with his grandparents near Burien. Cosmo Miller, 9, said he used a 30-pound test line to reel in the shark while fishing last week with his grandparents in Puget Sound, The Seattle Times reported Friday. It was really hard, Cosmo said, but I had a really big fishing pole. The boy, who released the shark after taking pictures for posterity, said it wasn't his first encounter with a six-gill shark.

Police in California, acting on a tip that a man tried to sell a flat screen TV for $100, said they detained a man and found a TV box containing an oven door. San Leandro police said the man was pulled over Wednesday and officers noticed a box in his car purporting to contain a brand-new 37-inch Sony TV for the price of only $1,000 -- but all they found inside the box was a glass oven door disguised a television, the Oakland (Calif.) Tribune reported Tuesday. Police said they pulled the man over because of an anonymous call from someone who said a suspicious man tried to sell him a TV for $100 out of his car in a Wal-Mart parking lot and gave police a description of the beige 1980 Oldsmobile Cutlass. The man, Anthony Myles, 52, was arrested for driving on a suspended license.

Word of the Day
  • A transitional zone between two communities containing the characteristic species of each.
The word 'ecotone' comes 'eco-' plus a Greek root meaning 'tension'.