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The Weird Week in Review

Marijuana Christmas Tree

Police in Germany seized a Christmas tree from a resident of Koblenz, because under the ornaments was a six-foot-tall marijuana plant! It had been cut and set into a Christmas tree stand, then decorated with a string of lights. The unnamed owner of the tree told police he planned to put wrapped gifts underneath it. He was promptly arrested and held on drug charges. Along with the tree, police seized another 150 grams of marijuana in the apartment.

Old Rolex Brings Unexpected Fortune

A retired doctor named Bob decided to sell his watch on eBay. It was a Rolex that he bought for a few dollars at a Navy Exchange in 1958. Bob wore the watch for decades and then put it away for a few years before deciding to get rid of it. He set the starting bid at $9.95 and didn't expect much more. But those who know recognized his watch as a rare Rolex Submariner Ref 5510, worn by Sean Connery as James Bond in the movies Dr. No, Goldfinger, and Thunderball. The bidding closed at $66,100! Bob has no regrets about selling the watch.

Monetary Jigsaw Puzzle

A businessman in Taiwan named Lin accidentally fed a sack of money into his company's industrial scrap machine -a shredder!

The 200,000 New Taiwan dollars are worth $6,600 US or £4,000. Each of the 200 bank notes was torn into about 20 pieces. The shredded money was taken to the Taiwanese Justice Ministry, which offers to repair torn money. Investigator Liu Hui-fen, a forensic scientist who normally works on handwriting samples, went to work putting the pieces together. Liu has handled many cases of torn money, but never a job like this. She fitted the pieces together like a jigsaw puzzle, and eventually restored all 200 bills to a condition that is acceptable by the central bank.

History Repeats Itself in Traffic Citation

An unnamed man was ticketed for speeding twice, once in England and then two years later in New Zealand. The odd thing was that the same police officer issued both citations! Andy Flitton was an officer with the London Metropolitan Police when the first citations was issued. He then emigrated to New Zealand, where he became a constable in the town of Rangiora. The driver, originally from South Africa, had lived in London for twelve years and then also moved to New Zealand. He was there less than two weeks before being pulled over by Flitton -again.

"He asked if I had worked in London," Constable Flitton said. "I said, 'yes'.

"He asked if I used to operate the laser gun on the A5 in north London. I said, 'yes'.

"And he said, 'I thought it was you. You gave me my last speeding ticket there two years ago'.

The two men then laughed about the coincidence. The driver has only received two traffic tickets in his life, and both came from Constable Flitton.

Police from Three Towns Respond to Bridesmaid Fight

A fight between two members of the wedding party led to police involvement in Verona, New Jersey. Around 100 people were at the reception when two bridesmaids began fighting. The fight was still going on when Verona police arrived. The officers called for backup from the Cedar Grove and Montclair police departments. A local rescue squad treated four people for minor injures. Police did not arrest the two bridesmaids, but escorted them from the reception hall, after which the festivities continued. Police say they don't know what the fight was about, calling a "family dispute."

Crash Leaves Family Coated with Paint

A minor traffic accident in New Germany, South Africa left a family covered in paint. Two adults and two children emerged from their Fiat uninjured, but also unrecognizable. They were traveling with a five-gallon bucket of white paint sitting on the back seat, and the force of the wreck caused the lid to pop off. The paint splashed all over the interior of the car. The occupants of the second car involved in the wreck were also unhurt. Fortunately, plenty of photographs were taken of the aftermath.

Roosters Wear Cool Shades for Peace

A free-range chicken farm in Chengdu, China is experimenting with a new method of preventing cockfighting. The competitive roosters tend to attack each other on sight. Now they are are fitted with special round blinders that resemble John Lennon's trademark specs to prevent them from seeing straight ahead, so they don't see their rivals. The shades are working so far, and other farmers in the region are considering using them.

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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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