Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Watch out for the puparazzi

Dog likes to hold hands while in the car

Willow, an Alaskan Klee Kai, likes to have her paw held while riding in the car.

YouTube link.

Man dressed as a tree arrested for blocking traffic

A man dressed as a tree was arrested on Monday, accused of blocking traffic.

Asher Woodworth, 30, from Portland, Oregon has been charged with obstructing a public way.

Police say Woodworth stood in the middle of High Street covered in tree limbs. Officers gave him a warning at first, but Woodworth allegedly returned to the street. He was arrested a short time later.

Woodworth’s motivation, according to police was to "see how people would react to his performance," and "how he might impact people’s natural choreography." Woodworth has been freed on $60 bail.

There are videos here and here.

Police smashed car window after wig on seat was mistaken for a child in danger

An unusual case of mistaken identity took place when a woman's wig was thought to be a child left in her car. Jasmine Turner, from Suffolk, Virginia, says she went out to the store on her work break when she got a call from police about an unresponsive child in her car.

"By the time I get from the Walmart back to my job, the police aren't there, but the window's busted out of my car and there's glass everywhere," says Turner. Except Turner doesn't have children. Turner says she left her wig on a pile of blankets in the backseat and that's what someone thought was a child.

But she says by the time she came back to her car, the police, and her window, were gone. "I really can't take my car anywhere because around Suffolk, anywhere as a matter of fact, you never know when somebody's just going to look in and be like, 'Oh, she has her window down, so I'm free to do whatever.'"

The police department say they notified Turner about the city's risk management division to get repairs for her car. "I just want my window fixed, and when I do get the window fixed, I need them to pay for me to either be in a rental or whatever the case is because I can't miss time off work," she says. "I have bills to pay."

With news video.

Koala spotted taking her baby for 'a morning stroll'

A koala was spotted "taking a morning stroll" with her joey on her back along the main street of McLaren Flat, south of Adelaide in South Australia, on Friday.

The pair were filmed by Radek Petlak and his wife Emma Barry, who were in McLaren Flat for work. "She was very unfazed by being filmed except for that little sideways glance she and her baby gave us," Ms Barry said.

"We were super confused when we first saw it when driving past but we're so glad we pulled over and got out of the car to watch her. After we stopped filming she went down the driveway of the house and headed to their garden. Such a beauty," she added.

YouTube link. Alternative Facebook video link.

Local bakery worker Charles said while there are many koalas in the area, it was rare to see them walking along the street in the middle of the morning. "It's much less dense residentially here, so I guess they feel safe to do their thing," he said. "[But] it's a rare thing to see a koala on the main street." He said most koalas in the area were spotted high up in the trees and shied away from people.

Man rescued from rubbish bin after apparently mistakenly thinking that it contained old clothes

Police were called after passers-by reported hearing a man calling for help from within a rubbish bin in the Vistabella neighbourhood of Murcia, southern Spain.

The 48-year-old man had to be rescued from the container after he climbed into through the tiny gap to retrieve what he thought was a bag of old clothes.

But he became trapped inside due to a tilting door mechanism which is meant to prevent people from raiding the bins. The man, who according to local reports is of Romanian nationality, had mistakenly thought the bin contained old clothes destined for recycling.

“We just don’t know how he managed to climb in there,” said Jose Elias a sergeant with the Murcia Local Police. He said police officers at the scene were unable to free the man and had to wait for council workers to come and open the container. He was finally freed after spending around half an hour trapped in the bin and was said to be unhurt.

Pee problem is eroding the world's tallest church

The ancient walls of Ulm Minster in the city of Ulm in Baden-Württemberg, Germany, are being eroded by human urine, its official stone masons have said. The acid and salts in the urine of those relieving themselves on the side of the church are causing significant damage to the stone of the lower walls.

Despite the fine being doubled from €50 to €100 for those caught passing water on the famous landmark, the number of occurrences does not seem to have dropped. The church is famous because it boasts the highest church spire in the world at 530ft (161.53 metres)

It is also the fourth tallest structure in the world built before the 20th century. However, this important building is under threat unless more is done to protect it, according to its custodians. “I have observed it again for the last half year, and once more people are urinating on it,” said Ulm Minster’s head mason Michael Hilbert.

The “master mason” (Baumeister) believes that events such as a wine festival and Christmas market are the main causes, and that there needs to be more free public toilets to discourage people from relieving themselves outside. Construction on the church began in 1377, but was not completed until 1890. Although renovation and preservation work is unending on the steeple, it is the foundations that are being threatened by a more unexpected menace.

Another broom snapped in Derbyshire village

A broom has been snapped in half in a Derbyshire village, the third such reported incident in 15 months.

Adam Ward was on his way to work in Barlborough on Monday morning when he saw the broken broom.

Its brush had been spiked into the grass as if to demonstrate some kind of show of victory.

Adam, like many others, has now been left wondering if the Eyam broom-snapper of summer 2015 is up to his or her dirty tricks again.

Elderly man trapped other passengers on bus in protest at being unable to get off at usual stop

An 87-year-old man from Plymouth, Devon, lay down on a bus and stopped other passengers from getting off in protest at a shake-up which has left him unable to get off at his usual stop. Angry Colin Willmott says he thought "the world had gone mad" when his CityBus service was re-routed. The changes were brought it because coaches have started using new stops at Derry's Cross after the closure of Bretonside and opening of Plymouth's new coach station at Mayflower Street. Last week, when the disabled pensioner expected to get off the number 25 bus at his usual stop, the bus kept going.

The driver said it was because coaches, which had previously been able to use Bretonside, were now using the Derry's Cross stops as there was no space at the city's new coach station. The next stop was further down Royal Parade, at stand number A16, and Mr Willmott said the extra walk was a struggle. "It's crazy," he said. "All of us pensioners have to walk from Royal Parade down to the market, then walk all the way back up again." Frail Mr Willmott added: "I come into town for the market, I don't shop up at the posh end of town. I'm an oldie, it's what we are used to." He said he was "no less than shattered", following the trek.

The next time it happened, Mr Willmott refused to get off at the Royal Parade stop and instead lay in the aisle, deliberately restricting other passengers from getting off the bus. "Two bus inspectors came out and they asked me to get off the bus and talk with them in the office," he said. "I said I had already [spoken to CityBus about the changes] and it didn't lead anywhere, so I would not leave until I saw some action. I let passengers on by moving to the side but a few of them shouted at me and called me selfish. They just didn't understand the bigger picture, it was the only way I could draw attention to the issue. It puts me off going into town."

Mr Willmott took his battle to his local councillor, Ian Tuffin, who said: "I immediately got all the info and the council are quite correct, it is dangerous [for buses] to double park. But I spoke with someone from the council and they confirmed that the bus should always stop in whatever circumstances. I recognise the elderly shouldn't have to walk that distance, it's ridiculous." Mark Collins, commercial and marketing manager at CityBus, said buses were only able to stop at Derry's Cross if there are no coaches there. A spokesman said: "Following feedback from passengers on the Service 25, an agreement has been made between Plymouth Citybus and Plymouth City Council that we will now use stand A9 to drop off and pick up passengers. It will not wait on this stop and continue to serve stand A16."

Councillor held birthday party for lamppost that has been broken for a year

A birthday party has been held for a lamppost which has not been working for a year. The street light in Pebmarsh Close, Colchester, Essex, was damaged 12 months ago after a bin lorry hit it. But despite repeated requests for it to be fixed, nothing has happened. So in a bid to grab the attention of Essex Highways bosses, Colchester borough and Essex county councillor Dave Harris (Lab) held a birthday party, complete with cake and card, at the lamppost.

Mr Harris said: “It’s been a full year and nothing has happened. It really is unacceptable. “It is on a corner where many people walk at night, so it needs to be lit to make people feel safe, especially now we are coming into winter and the evenings will be darker. I thought I’d have a party to show it’s still not been done. I selected a card with an owl on it because you have to be an owl to see around the place at night.”

Mr Harris first raised the issue on October 11 last year. In email exchanges he was initially told the lamppost would be repaired within “four to five weeks”. But nothing was done and, in August, Mr Harris raised the issue again, only to be told the job had been passed to a contractor to install a new lamp column. At that time, the contractor was waiting for new materials to complete the work. No timescale for repairs could be given.

When Mr Harris then asked why the contractor did not have any lamppost columns, which are frequently needed for repairs, he was told although the equipment had been available since October last year, “other works have taken priority”. Essex Highways has now confirmed the street light will be repaired within a week. Mr Harris added: “This is a service each and everyone of us pay our council tax for. It should not take a year for a lamppost to be repaired.”

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Giddy up

Panda performs sit-ups

A resident of China's Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base does its best to stay in shape.

YouTube link.

Dog visits penguins at aquarium

This was Bryn the dog's second visit to see the penguins. His first visit, two years previously, resulted in what is arguably a better video, but for reasons unknown is unembeddable.

YouTube link.

Suspected drunk driver arrested after crashing into fire truck and medical helicopter

McKinley County Sheriffs Office deputies responded to a crash early on Sunday morning after a suspected drunk driver crashed into a medical helicopter and a fire truck on Highway 566 near Gallup in New Mexico.

Deputies say a landing zone for a medical transport helicopter had been set up by the fire department for transport of a patient from a separate crash on Navajo route 1149, when the reported drunk driver went around the barricade on Highway 566 crashing into the helicopter and fire truck.

The helicopter was unoccupied, not running and rotors were not spinning, according to McKinely County Sheriff’s Office. McKinley County sheriff’s say the suspected drunk driver, identified as 26-year-old Glenn Livingston of Gallup, has been arrested.

YouTube link.

He faces several charges, including aggravated DWI, driving with an open container of alcohol inside his car and resisting, evading and or obstructing an officer. No injuries were reported at the time of the crash. The patient made it safely to the hospital. MCSO says all vehicles involved were rendered inoperable and towed from the crash scene.

Runaway emu visited Irish bar in Florida

An escaped emu wandered to an Irish bar in Florida.

The bird, named Taco, hopped over a 4-foot fence in Cape Canaveral and sauntered up to Hogan's Irish Bar.

The emu's owner, Paul Eaton, said the bird was spooked by a stray dog at around 8:30pm on Friday.

It took Brevard County Sheriff's deputies and an animal control officer more than an hour to capture the 8-year-old bird. Cpl. David Jacobs, a spokesman for the sheriff's office said it was like trying to catch a giant chicken.

With short video.

Snake appears to sport sunglasses and a moustache

A snake spotted in north Texas appears to look like it's wearing a pair of sunglasses and sport a moustache.

The unique scale pattern belongs to a Western rat snake, a nonvenomous species of snake found throughout North America.

The pictures, which were given to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department by Karlie Gray, were posted on the agency's Twitter account.

The rodent-eating reptile is also known as the black rat snake and pilot black snake.

Church statue reunited with missing baby Jesus head - Update

The missing head belonging to a statue of baby Jesus has been returned, and the bright orange clay head that replaced it has been removed.

Gérald Lajeunesse, the priest at ainte-Anne-des-Pins Catholic Church in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, says the head was returned to him on Friday.

The statue had recently been fitted with the temporary clay head, topped with a spiky orange crown, crafted by local artist Heather Wise. Father Lajeunesse said a woman returned the head. The woman said the person who took the head was suffering from personal problems, according to Lajeunesse.

The priest said that he would not file a complaint over the theft, and is simply happy that the head has been returned. Lajeunesse says that for now, the statue will remain headless. Before replacing it, the church needs to figure out how to secure it safely to the statue and prevent it from being stolen again.

Man arrested after stolen car mirrors were allegedly found down his pants

A 39-year-old man has been arrested in north Adelaide, Australia, after stealing two mirrors from a car and putting them "down his pants", police allege.

South Australian officers said the accused was arrested in Salisbury East at about 2:30am on Monday. "Police were conducting patrols when they stopped and spoke to a man walking along the road," a statement said.

"The man was searched with police locating two [Holden] Torana wing mirrors down his pants along with a screwdriver and allen-key set. A patrol searched the local area and discovered that the mirrors had been stolen from a nearby car."

The man from Salisbury East has been granted bail and will appear in Elizabeth Magistrates Court next month.

Giant spider spotted carrying a mouse

A man from central Queensland, Australia, has caught on film a huntsman spider clutching onto a small mouse and trying to drag it to the top of a fridge where it can eat in peace.

Coppabella man Jason Womal said his neighbour called him into his house to show him the huntsman struggling up the fridge with the seemingly dead mouse in the early hours of Sunday morning.

"So I am just about to leave for work about 12:30 and me neighbour says 'You want to see something cool' and I say 'hell yeah'," Mr Womal wrote on a Facebook post.

Mr Womal decided to name the spider Hermie. "We have adopted him and he is now running his own extermination business out of our town Coppabella," he said.

You can watch the video here.

Police sent to deal with 'suicidal' sheep on road

Police in West Devon were called to deal with a report of "suicidal sheep" disrupting traffic on a Dartmoor road.

Officers were sent to the A386 in Tavistock, close to the North Cornwall border, on Saturday night.

An official police record of the incident said sheep were on the road, causing a potential hazard for traffic, and were "suicidal."

Sergeant Harry Tangye from Devon and Cornwall Police said it was: "A unique problem we have in Devon."