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The Weird Week in Review

Toddler Steals Keys and Car

A four-year-old boy in Gärsnäs, southern Sweden, sneaked into his mother's jacket pocket as she slept, stole her car keys, and went for a joyride. The toddler managed to drive the car about half a kilometer and made three right turns before crashing the vehicle into a truck. A nearby shopkeeper took the unnamed child home and woke his mother. Police had a hard time believing what happened, but decided not to press charges against the child or his mother. No one was injured.

Sneaking Into Spain Disguised as a Car Seat

Two Moroccan men tried to sneak an illegal immigrant from Guinea into Spain in a Renault. They had removed the padding from the passenger seat, replaced it with the immigrant, and recovered it. Then one of the Moroccan men sat on him as the car attempted to cross the border. Border police examined the vehicle and felt a body underneath the upholstery. The Guinea man was sent to a detention center and the two Moroccans were arrested. The story contains a photograph of the scheme.

Conveniently Peeled Bananas

The European supermarket chain Billa uses a slogan urging more "common sense." Then in at least one store in Austria they offered bananas for sale peeled and packaged in styrofoam trays with plastic wrap.

But the stunt by the German-owned Billa supermarket chain - part of the Rewe group that has thousands of stores in 9 European countries, has caused outrage among users after it was posted on the firm's Facebook page.

Last night staff moved to distance themselves from the sale of ready-peeled bananas and apologised for the "one off" mistake, saying it would not happen again.

I guess someone explained to them that bananas come in their own nature-made packaging that's even safer than plastic wrap.

Make A Birthday Party Special with Alligators!

If having a birthday party poolside is not enough excitement for your child, you can now rent alligators to swim in the pool with the kids. Alligator wrangler Bob Barrett will deliver an alligator to your party for $175 -if you live near Tampa, Florida. The idea has really taken off, as parents feel the need to step up from providing clowns and bouncy castles for children's parties. The party gators are very young rescued animals, and their mouths are taped shut before their public appearance. When asked, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the practice is not illegal, but they do not recommend it.

Protip: Do Not Dress as a Stereotypical Terrorist in Public

Police in Phoenix, Arizona, responded to reports of a man walking around town with a grenade launcher, just eight days after the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater massacre in July. They determined that the stunt was a hoax, and the 16-year-old dressed in a sheet and carrying a fake grenade launcher was not arrested. Soon after, a video of the incident was posted at YouTube under the title "Dark Knight Shooting Response, Rocket Launcher Police Test." The video was traced to 39-year-old local filmmaker Michael David Turley, who was arrested on Monday.

Turley was charged with knowingly giving a false impression of a terrorist act, endangerment, contributing to the delinquency of a minor and misconduct involving a simulated explosive.

He is being held in county jail on a $5,000 bond. If convicted, he faces up to 45 months in prison, said Maricopa County Attorney's Office spokesman Jerry Cobb.

Buy a Diamond, Get a Free Gun

Like grandpa always said, nothing goes together as well as engagement rings and rifles. A jewelry store in Atlanta, Georgia, is offering a sweet package deal if you want both. Buy a diamond worth $2,499 or more at D. Geller and Son, and get a free hunting rifle! The jewelry store doesn't actually hand out guns. When you purchase a diamond, you get a voucher and then you must comply with applicable laws when you go to the gun store.

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8 Bizarre Places People Have Gotten Stuck
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Some days it just doesn’t pay to venture outside, particularly when you wind up the subject of a police and fire department rescue because you’ve somehow trapped yourself inside an ATM machine. Check out eight other strange environments that have ensnared bystanders and prompted emergency responses.

1. A CLAW MACHINE

A giant see-through container full of plush toys is any child’s idea of paradise, and they will attempt any means possible to inhabit it. For three-year-old Jamie Bracken-Murphy of Nenagh, Tipperary, Ireland, that meant crawling through the small flap from which the toys can be retrieved and finding himself lodged in a claw machine. Murphy was on display for about 10 minutes before an off-duty fireman was able to coax him back out the way he came in. Jamie’s father, Damien, expressed little surprise at his son’s predicament, saying that, "He's a very mischievous, sharp kid who's always pushing boundaries."

2. A TRAFFIC CONE

A man has a traffic cone over his head
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In 2013, a man in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, England thought he’d have a bit of fun by sticking a traffic cone—otherwise known as a bollard—on his head. To his dismay, the large cone slid down over and past his shoulders, entombing him in plastic. John Waterman, a witness to the incident, captured it all on his cell phone. "It was very random," Waterman told The Telegraph. "It's not the usual thing you see in the middle of Hemel Hempstead on a Sunday lunchtime." The man stumbled around for more than two hours before anyone bothered to call police.

3. A CEMENT HOPPER

Aurora, Illinois was the site of a recent cement mix-up, when an unidentified man became trapped in a cement hopper. The worker had climbed into the machine to clean it, but found he was unable to move when residual cement on the machine's floor began hardening around his legs. It took firefighters more than two hours to extricate him from the hopper. He was taken to a nearby hospital and treated for minor injuries, but released the same day, according to the local fire department.

4. A TOILET

A stock shot of a person stuck in a toilet
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In 2016, a Norwegian man named Cato Berntsen Larsen found himself in deep trouble after he tried lowering himself into a public toilet to retrieve a friend’s cell phone. The toilet’s tank was located underneath the seat, allowing enough room for Larsen to become trapped. To his dismay, the tank—which is not connected to a sewage system and is only emptied sporadically—was full of human waste. Adding to the putrid nature of his enclave, Larsen vomited and was bitten by an unknown animal: His situation did not improve until authorities were able to come and pull him out. "It was damn disgusting," Larsen said, "the worst I have experienced. There were animals down there, too."

5. A GIANT STONE VAGINA

Tourists and residents of Tübingen, Germany are quite familiar with Chacán-Pi, a giant stone sculpture of a vagina created by Peruvian artist Fernando de la Jara. The towering display sits just outside Tübingen University’s Institute for Microbiology and Virology and has attracted curious onlookers since 2001. In 2014, an unnamed American student decided to go spelunking in the 32-ton carving for a photo opportunity and became trapped, necessitating rescue by 22 firefighters. The Guardian called them “midwives” and reported that the student was “delivered by hand.”

6. A WASHING MACHINE

A man appears to be stuck inside a washing machine
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Sometimes, games of hide-and-seek can go very wrong. That was the case for a man near Melbourne, Australia in 2014, who climbed into his top-loading washing machine fully nude to surprise his partner. Unfortunately, he was unable to climb back out. Responders were able to grease him with a liberal application of olive oil and pull him out. First Constable Luke Ingram told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that, as a rule, “My advice would be for people not to climb into appliances.” The warning went unheeded by another Australian man in 2015, who found himself lodged in a front-loading machine and had to wait while rescuers disassembled the entire unit in order to free him.

7. A BABY SWING

If you’re ever challenged by your adult friends to fit into a baby swing at a public park, you can confidently say that it won’t work. That’s because a man from Vallejo, California tried it in 2011. While he managed to slide into the seat using liquid laundry detergent, he couldn’t slide back out. As his legs began to swell, his friends abandoned him overnight. He wasn’t rescued until nine hours later, when a groundskeeper heard his screams for help at 6 o'clock the following morning. "The man sustained non-life threatening injuries to his body," the San Francisco Chronicle reported, "but there’s no word yet on the condition of his ego."

8. A CHIMNEY

A chimney sits on a rooftop
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There are many Santa jokes to be made, but when you’re the man trapped in your own home’s chimney for four hours, there probably isn’t a huge urge to start laughing. In late 2016, a Tucson, Arizona homeowner who had locked his keys in his home opted to retrieve them by re-entering his abode via the chimney. While it was a spectacularly bad idea, he actually almost made it: His feet were touching the floor of his fireplace before the space grew too narrow to allow for any further passage and he got stuck. Firefighters were able to pull him out from the roof, covered in soot but otherwise unharmed.

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Animals
This Octopus Species in Northern Australia Can Hunt on Dry Land
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Most octopuses live in the ocean—but in northern Australia, a small, shallow-water species takes to land in search of food. Abdopus aculeatus is the only octopus that’s specially adapted to walk on dry ground. Using its long, sucker-lined arms, the slimy sea creature pulls itself along the shoreline as it searches tide pools for crabs.

Witness Abdopus aculeatus in action by watching BBC Earth’s video below.

[h/t BBC Earth]

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