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The Weird Week in Review

Lonely Pig in Quarantine

Due to fear of swine flu, Afghanistan has quarantined its pig. Yes, the nation's only pig, normally on display with other exotic wildlife at the Kabul Zoo. In accord with Muslim dietary restrictions, pork and pork products are illegal in Afghanistan. Some visitors to the zoo expressed concern that the zoo pig could spread the new strain of swine flu.

"For now the pig is under quarantine, we built it a room because of swine influenza," Aziz Gul Saqib, director of Kabul Zoo, told Reuters. "We've done this because people are worried about getting the flu."

Runner Expected to Finish Marathon in 13 Days

Army Major Phil Packer began the London Marathon when everyone else did, but his doctor will only allow him to walk two miles a day, so he is expected to finish on Saturday, 13 days after starting the race. Last year Packer was seriously injured in Iraq and was told he probably would never walk again. However, he is walking the marathon on crutches to raise money for Help for Heroes, a British organization that supports wounded veterans. Packer's goal is to raise £1 million; he has so far raised over half the amount.

Speed Camera Boss Banned for Speeding

Tom Riall, a divisional chief executive at Serco, was banned from driving for six months by a court in London after a camera recorded him driving at 103 miles per hour in a 70 mph zone. Riall heads the Home Affairs division of Serco, the company that has installed 4,500 speed cameras to date in Britain.

Man Caught with Songbirds in Pants

150_smuggledbirds.jpgCustoms agents at the Los Angeles International Airport noticed bird droppings and feathers on 46-year-old Sony Dong's shoes. They discovered that Dong had 14 Asian songbirds hidden in his pants legs. Dong said that he had purchased the bul-buls, thrushes, and magpies robins in Vietnam for $50 each and could sell them for several hundred dollars apiece. Another California man, 34-year-old Duc Le, was arrested in the bird smuggling operation after a search at his home revealed 51 more songbirds. The birds were placed in quarantine.

It Was An Accident

A 30-year-old woman in China was performing oral sex on her boss in a parked car when a van crashed into their vehicle. The impact caused the secretary to bite off the man's penis! Emergency services were called by an investigator who had been following the couple. The investigator was hired by the secretary's husband because he suspected her of being unfaithful. The woman took the severed organ to the hospital, but it was not reported whether it was reattached.

Beetle Named for Stephen Colbert

150colberti2.jpgHumorist Stephen Colbert had expressed a wish to have a species named after him, specifically "something cooler than a spider." Insect researchers Quentin Wheeler of Arizona State University and Kelly Miller from the University of New Mexico have granted his wish and named a newly identified beetle Agaporomorphus colberti in his honor. There will plenty more beetles to be named, as there are an estimated 1.5 million species yet to be studied.

Giant Spiders Invade Outback Town

Bowen, Australia is seeing in influx of eastern tarantulas, also known as "bird-eating spiders". Dozens of spiders have crawled out of gardens and have made their way into public areas of the town. These spiders grow up to 2.4 inches long with a leg span of over six inches! Their bite can kill a dog or make a human very sick.

Audy Geiszler, who runs a local pest control service, caught one this week that more than covered his hand after he killed it.

"I think I'm going to mount this one in acrylic to show people how big it is. It'll make a great paperweight."

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holidays
Bleat Along to Classic Holiday Tunes With This Goat Christmas Album
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iStock

Feeling a little Grinchy this month? The Sweden branch of ActionAid, an international charity dedicated to fighting global poverty, wants to goat—errr ... goad—you into the Christmas spirit with their animal-focused holiday album: All I Want for Christmas is a Goat.

Fittingly, it features the shriek-filled vocal stylings of a group of festive farm animals bleating out classics like “Jingle Bells,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” and “O Come All Ye Faithful.” The recording may sound like a silly novelty release, but there's a serious cause behind it: It’s intended to remind listeners how the animals benefit impoverished communities. Goats can live in arid nations that are too dry for farming, and they provide their owners with milk and wool. In fact, the only thing they can't seem to do is, well, sing. 

You can purchase All I Want for Christmas is a Goat on iTunes and Spotify, or listen to a few songs from its eight-track selection below.

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Nom & Malc, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
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Food
Cheese Wheel Wedding Cakes Are a Funky Twist on an Old Tradition
Nom & Malc, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Nom & Malc, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

If there’s ever a time you have permission to be cheesy, it’s on your wedding day. What better way to do so than with a pungent wedding cake made of actual wheels of cheese? According to Elite Daily, cheese wedding cakes are a real option for couples who share an affinity for dairy products.

One of the trailblazers behind the sharp trend is Bath, England-based cheese supplier The Fine Cheese Co. The company offers clients a choice of one of dozens of wedding cake designs. There are bold show-stoppers like the Beatrice cake, which features five tiers of cheese and is priced at $400. For customers looking for something more delicate, there’s the Clara centerpiece, which replaces miniature wedding cakes with mounds of goat cheese. Whether your loved one likes funky Stilton or mellow brie, there’s a cheese cake to satisfy every palate. Flowers are incorporated into each display to make them just as pretty as conventional wedding cakes.

Since The Fine Cheese Co. arranged their first wedding cake in 2002, other cheese suppliers have entered the game. The Cheese Shed in Newton Abbot, England; I.J. Ellis Cheesemongers in Scotland; and Murray’s Cheese in New York will provide cheese wheel towers for weddings or any other special occasion. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from clearing out the local fromagerie and assembling a cheese cake at home.

[h/t Elite Daily]

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