CLOSE
Original image

The Weird Week in Review

Original image

Cat Saves Man from Burning Home

With most "pet saves family from fire" stories, it's easy to assume that the pet woke someone up because it wanted OUT of the house. In this case, the cat came in from outside, and it didn't even live there!

Engineer Andrew Williams was asleep when the fire broke out at his bungalow in Bracknell in Berkshire.

As black smoke filled the property, his neighbour's cat Hugo came through a cat-flap and raised the alarm by clawing at the father-of-two's face.

Rescuers said that the fire could have killed Mr Williams if he had not been awoken by Hugo. A smoke detector had been moved during work on the bungalow.

Motive for Assault: Missing Condiments

26-year-old Monique Aguet went through the drive-through of a KFC in Surprise, Arizona. She became upset when her order did not include condiments. She went inside the store to continue the argument with a store employee, and was ordered to leave. The employee followed her back outside and stood behind Aguet's car to record her license plate number. Aguet then backed up the car/ The unnamed employee banged on the trunk to let her know she was there, but Aguet continued to back up, striking the employee with the car. Aguet was arrested for disorderly conduct and suspicion of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. The employee was unhurt.

Windshield Shattered by Falling Fish

Leighann Niles was driving near East Harbor State Park in Ohio when a fish fell out of the sky and broke her car's windshield! The eight-pound freshwater drum, or sheepshead, was dropped by a bald eagle flying overhead. Niles said the eagle also dropped the head of a second fish. Neither Niles nor her 5-year-old daughter were injured in the incident.

Inmate Hides Gun in his Fat Rolls

120_vera25-year-old George Vera was arrested Sunday in Houston, Texas for selling bootleg CDs. Vera was searched at least four times and passed through a metal detector twice as he was processed and transferred from the city lockup to the county jail. On Monday, during a shower break, Vera admitted to a guard that he smuggled an unloaded 9mm pistol into the jail by hiding it in his rolls of fat. Vera weighs more than 500 pounds.

Cab Driver Choked; People Locked Inside Church

A strange chain of events occurred Saturday morning in Mount Vernon, New York. A cab picked up a passenger, who tried to rob the driver by choking him while he was driving. The driver lost control of the vehicle and crashed into the River Jordan Holy Tabernacle Church. The attacker and two other passengers fled the scene. While police were investigating the incident, they found five people inside the church, which was locked from the outside. Police Commissioner David Chong said the five people were taken to a hospital as a precaution.

"What scares us about this is that the church was all locked down from the outside, so there was no means of getting out of the church for these four adults and the child," Chong said.

Duck has a Sandal

150ducksandalLucky the duckling is very lucky to have been adopted by an orthopedic nurse after she broke her leg, which left her with a right foot that bent the wrong way. Alison Morgan of Newport, Wales, performs physical therapy on the leg and had a special Roman sandal made for her by cobbler Kelvin Reddicliffe. The sandal protects Lucky's toes from irritation and further damage, and allows her to keep up with the other two ducks in the home. Morgan is trying to raise £500 for an operation to straighten and lengthen Lucky's leg.

Man Blames Cat for Child Pornography

Police investigators found over 1,000 images of child pornography on a computer belonging to 48-year-old Keith R. Griffin of Jensen Beach, Florida. He was charged with ten counts of possession of the materials. Griffin said that he left his computer on all the time, and that his cat would sometimes jump on the keyboard. When he returned to the computer, there would be "strange material downloaded". Griffin is being held in the Martin County Jail, with bail set at $250,000

Original image
iStock
arrow
Food
Thanks to a Wet Winter, New Zealand Faces a Potential Potato Chip Shortage
Original image
iStock

New Zealand has plenty of unique and tasty snacks, but kiwis also love potato chips. The universal comfort food is in danger Down Under, however, as an unusually wet winter has devastated the island country’s tuber crops, according to BBC News.

Twenty percent of New Zealand’s annual potato crop was wiped out from a series of major storms and floods that ravaged the nation’s North and South Islands, The Guardian reports. In some regions, up to 30 percent of potato crops were affected, with the varieties used to make chips bearing the brunt of the damage.

Potato prices spiked as farmers struggled, but the crisis—now dubbed “chipocalypse” by media outlets—didn't really make the mainstream news until supermarket chain Pak’nSave posted announcements in potato chip aisles that warned customers of a salty snack shortage until the New Year.

Pak’nSave has since rescinded this explanation, claiming instead that they made an ordering error. However, other supermarket chains say they’re working directly with potato chip suppliers to avoid any potential shortfalls, and are aware that supplies might be limited for the foreseeable future.

New Zealand’s potato farming crisis extends far beyond the snack bars at rugby matches and vending machines. Last year’s potato crops either rotted or remained un-harvested, and the ground is still too wet to plant new ones. This hurts New Zealand’s economy: The nation is the world’s ninth-largest exporter of potatoes.

Plus, potatoes “are a food staple, and this is becoming a food security issue as the effects of climate change take their toll on our potato crop,” says Chris Claridge, the chief executive of industry group Potatoes New Zealand, according to The Guardian.

In the meantime, New Zealanders are preparing to hunker down for a few long months of potential potato peril—and according to some social media users, kale chips are not a suitable alternative. “Chipocalypse” indeed.

[h/t BBC News]

Original image
iStock
arrow
fun
Supermarket Employees to Compete in National Bagging Competition
Original image
iStock

In today’s busy world, efficiency is king—especially at grocery stores, where long checkout lines can turn even the most patient shopper into a petulant purchaser. It only makes sense, then, that a nationwide competition exists among supermarket employees to determine the country’s best bagger.

As the Associated Press reports, Alysha Orrok, a teacher from Portsmouth, New Hampshire, recently won her state’s Best Bagger competition. She’s now headed to the U.S. finals, which will take place in Las Vegas in February 2018 and is sponsored by the National Grocers Association (NGA).

In Las Vegas, finalists from more than a dozen states—ranging from Washington to Florida—will duke it out onstage to see who’s truly king or queen of the checkout line. Competitors will be judged on weight distribution, appearance, speed, and technique (no smushed bread or bruised fruits allowed).

Orrok, who works evenings and weekends at a local grocery store, says she was initially clumsy on the job. “My first day as a bagger I dropped a soda and it exploded everywhere,” she told NBC Boston.

Over time, though, Orrok got so good at her side gig that she decided to compete in the New Hampshire state bagging competition earlier this month. At the tournament, "I was like 10 seconds faster than the next person," Orrok said. "I feel like I get in the zone and I just fly."

Competitors heading to 2018’s Best Bagger competition will face off to see who can achieve the best customer service in the shortest time span. The grand prize is $10,000, which will be awarded to a deserving grocery store employee “with infectious company pride and an enthusiastic commitment to customer service,” according to the NGA.

[h/t NBC Boston]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios