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The Weird Week in Review

Man Reports Incorrect Change to Police

Dexter White of North Charleston, South Carolina paid a drug dealer $60 for crack cocaine, but says he only received $20 worth. Naturally, he was angry, so after he smoked what he had, he called 911 to report that he had been shortchanged. White asked for the police to send a canine unit to his location. Police responded, but instead of getting him a refund, they arrested White on a charge of disorderly conduct.

Mobility Scooter vs. Airplane

Colin Furze, a plumber in Lincolnshire, England, holds the world speed record for a mobility scooter, driving one that he built at at 71.59 mph. Now he can say he has raced with an airplane!

Mr Furze spent nearly three months and £400 converting his scooter, fitting it with a powerful 125cc motorbike engine beneath the seat, five gears and twin exhausts.

And remarkably the scooter managed to accelerate faster than a Robin DR400 single engine propeller aircraft when the pair were pitted against each other down a runway in Lincolnshire.

Eventually the plane overtook the scooter, but Furze is satisfied with his scooter's performance.

Led Zeppelin Finds Hidden Burglar

An alert neighbor heard a strange noise at the house next door in Friern Barnet, Greater London, England last December. He looked out the window and saw footprints in the snow on the rooftop and called police. Officers arrived with a sniffer dog named Led Zeppelin about the same time the resident came home. The burglar tried to hide in a bedroom under a duvet, but Led Zeppelin uncovered him. Police arrested 36-year-old Robert Erdei. Erdei was convicted last week and sentenced to four years for burglary with intent to steal.

Teacher Shaves After Ten Years

Gary Weddle did not shave for 3,454 days. The 50-year-old middle school teacher was so absorbed with watching the news after the 9/11 attacks that he went for days without showering or shaving. Then he made a vow to not shave his face until Osama bin Laden was captured or proven dead. Weddle had no idea that his whiskers would grow for almost ten years, but he kept the vow. Parts of his beard grew 14 inches long! Weddle finally shaved it off Sunday evening, just before president Obama addressed the nation about bin Laden's death.

Fancy Luncheon on the L Train

Imagine a formal feast served on a subway train! That's exactly what happened in New York City on Sunday, aboard the L train bound for Brooklyn. The guests only knew they were there for an "underground dining experience." What they got was an experience, all right: a six-course meal of caviar, filet mignon, and more, served on lap trays and finished up in a half-hour. The entire event was arranged by several cooperating supper clubs, unbeknownst to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Officials of the Authority were not happy. After all, open drinks of any kind are not allowed on city trains.

Dog Hides in Bathtub to Survive Fire

A home in Greenville County, South Carolina burned for hours as firefighters battled the blaze. The family was away from home, but Mia the one-year-old Belgian Malinois was inside. The dog saved herself by hiding in a bathtub in the basement! Mia's owner, Chris Brumby, said he knew the dog was smart.

He said Mia was able to get to a bathtub on the lowest level of the house, where she waited as firefighters doused the home with water. As the water ran down into the basement, it filled the bathtub and soaked Mia, keeping her safe from flames, Brock said.

Brumby said the dog has learned how to open doors throughout the house, and that she had to open four doors to get to the bathtub where she was found.

Six hours after firefighters arrived, they found Mia, wet and sooty, but well. The cause of the fire has not yet determined.

Going to Prom in the Weinermobile

Ben Ross was seriously hurt in a motorcycle accident. A joke he made while in the hospital led his mother to petition the Oscar Mayer company to take Ben and his girlfriend Molly Muchow to their prom in the Weinermobile. The company came through, and Ben and Molly were driven in the 27-foot vehicle to the L.D. Bell High School prom last weekend at the Dallas Trade Center.

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Lists
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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