The Weird Week in Review
Robber Writes Note on Personal Check
33-year-old Patrick Johnson was arrested on bank robbery charges after he demanded and received money from two Bank of America locations in Ocala, Florida. In both instances, he passed a note to the teller that said he had a gun. Police were able to find Johnson with the help of witnesses on the scene. Officers then noticed that both notes were written on the backs of printed checks from Johnson's personal checking account!
Vet Pulls Hook out of Shark's Mouth
A female nurse shark was struggling with a large gaff in her mouth in the Cape Byron Marine Park in New South Wales last week. Three divers set out to reach her, and were surprised to find the shark on their first dive. The 9.8-foot shark was lassoed and brought to the surface. Four men straddled the shark to restrain her while Sea World veterinarian David Blyde reached down inside to remove the hook. The operation took about two hours. See more pictures here.
World Santa Claus Congress Held in Copenhagen
136 Santas from around the globe met this week in Denmark for the annual World Santa Claus Congress. The event has been held annually for since 1957, and includes a bicycle parade, singing, and a "yula-hoop" event. See a gallery of photographs from this year's event here.
Hailstones Blast Man Off Toilet
Martin Bierbauer was on the toilet at his apartment in Eisenstadt, Austria when hundreds of thousands of hailstones exploded out of the fixture. The hailstones were from an earlier storm that blocked municipal drains. Several toilets in the building were affected in the same way.
Martin Bierbauer said: "I heard the pipes rumbling a bit, and suddenly hailstones the size of golf balls started exploding out of the toilet like it was a popcorn machine.
"There was an avalanche of ice that quickly filled the toilet, then the entire flat, and eventually the entire building."
"Lesbian" Can Legally Mean What You Think
Three residents of the Greek island Lesbos filed an injunction with a Greek court to define "Lesbians" as those who live on the island. They argued that using the word to refer to gay women was "insulting" to local residents. Lats week, a court in Athens rejected the notion, saying that gay groups in Greece and elsewhere could use the term. The plaintiffs were fined court costs, but can appeal the decision. Lesbos is the birthplace of the ancient poetess Sappho, whose poetry inspired the popular use of the term lesbian.