CLOSE

The Weird Week in Review

Eternal Flame Extinguished Due to Unpaid Gas Bill

The former Soviet Republic of Kyrgyzstan has a memorial to fallen soldiers of World War II in the capital city of Bishkek, which features an "eternal flame." However, the government is three years in arrears to the gas company, Kyrgyzgas, that supplies the fuel for the flame. The bill is now over $9,000, and Kyrgyzgas turned off the supply line, putting the eternal flame out. The government said there is some confusion as to who is responsible for the bill, but they hope to work things out before the annual May 9 memorial commemorations.

Dull and Boring

Many cities adopt a "sister city" across the pond. These matchups between the New World and the Old World serve as a sort of cultural exchange. People in the village of Dull, in Perthshire, Scotland, have shown their sense of humor by seeking out a partnership with the Oregon logging town of Boring. It may be the most exciting thing that's happened in the two towns in a while.

Community councillor Marjorie Keddie said: "It might seem like a joke, but this could have real benefits for Dull. Everyone has been smiling at the prospect of the very eye-catching road sign this will inevitably require."

The two towns are not exactly equivalent, as Boring has a population of 12,000 while Dull could scramble up maybe 80 people.

Stabbing Victim Used Kebab as Pressure Bandage

James Hobbs of Highbridge, England, got into an altercation in Somerset with Jamie Edney, who slashed Hobbs' throat. To stem the bleeding, Hobbs grabbed a kebab from a takeout order and pressed it against his neck. He still lost over six pints of blood before being stitched up at the hospital. Edney was later sentenced to five and a half years for the stabbing, the lowest possible sentence, because he didn't start the fight.

Where Do You Work? "Roof"

Richard Haughton builds and repairs thatched roofs in Scottow, Norfolk, England. But when he works, all eyes are on his dog Axel, who's right there on the roof with Haughton and his crew. The Newfoundland mix has been climbing the ladder to be with his master since he was a puppy, and now has quite a reputation among customers, who love the rooftop dog. Axel climbs up well, and doesn't mind spending all day on the roof, but still cannot climb down on his own. He'll wag his tail to let the work crew know he needs to be brought down.

Felony Charges for $1 Soda

Mark Abaire of Naples, Florida, requested a cup for water at the local McDonalds, but instead filled it with soda from the fountain. When confronted by the manager, Abaire declined to pay for the soda, and was arrested shortly after. Although the crime would normally be misdemeanor theft, Abaire's record of petty theft raised it to a felony charge. He was also charged with trespassing and disorderly intoxication, both misdemeanors.

Cher's Key to the City Sold on eBay

Officials in Adelaide, Australia, were not happy to see the honor they bestowed upon singer Cher for sale at eBay. The Key to the City was sold early Thursday on the auction site. Mayor Stephen Yarwood said he was "exceptionally disappointed." Former mayor Steve Condous, who presented the key to Cher in 1990, said,

"I'm disappointed. I would have thought that getting the key to a city like Adelaide would have had some value to her, but obviously it doesn't because she wouldn't have got rid of it," said Condous.

"If she didn't want to keep it she should have returned it back to the city."

The bidding is is now closed; the key sold for over $95,000.

Targeting Customers: You're Doing It Wrong

Cedric Barnes of Florence, South Carolina was apparently looking to drum up some business by calling names from his list of phone contacts. He must have not recognized the name of one man he called trying to sell some marijuana. It was his former probation officer. The officer set up an appointment for the transaction and contacted Florence police, who were the ones who actually met with Barnes, bought the pot, and then arrested him. Police seized a half-pound of marijuana and some cocaine during the bust.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Nom & Malc, Flickr // CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
arrow
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]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Screenshot via Mount Vernon/Vimeo
arrow
History
The Funky History of George Washington's Fake Teeth
Screenshot via Mount Vernon/Vimeo
Screenshot via Mount Vernon/Vimeo

George Washington may have the most famous teeth—or lack thereof—in American history. But counter to what you may have heard about the Founding Father's ill-fitting dentures, they weren't made of wood. In fact, he had several sets of dentures throughout his life, none of which were originally trees. And some of them are still around. The historic Mount Vernon estate holds the only complete set of dentures that has survived the centuries, and the museum features a video that walks through old George's dental history.

Likely due to genetics, poor diet, and dental disease, Washington began losing his original teeth when he was still a young man. By the time he became president in 1789, he only had one left in his mouth. The dentures he purchased to replace his teeth were the most scientifically advanced of the time, but in the late 18th century, that didn't mean much.

They didn't fit well, which caused him pain, and made it difficult to eat and talk. The dentures also changed the way Washington looked. They disfigured his face, causing his lips to noticeably stick out. But that doesn't mean Washington wasn't grateful for them. When he finally lost his last surviving tooth, he sent it to his dentist, John Greenwood, who had made him dentures of hippo ivory, gold, and brass that accommodated the remaining tooth while it still lived. (The lower denture of that particular pair is now held at the New York Academy of Medicine.)

A set of historic dentures
George Washington's Mount Vernon

These days, no one would want to wear dentures like the ones currently held at Mount Vernon (above). They're made of materials that would definitely leave a bad taste in your mouth. The base that fit the fake teeth into the jaw was made of lead. The top teeth were sourced from horses or donkeys, and the bottom were from cows and—wait for it—people.

These teeth actually deteriorated themselves, revealing the wire that held them together. The dentures open and shut thanks to metal springs, but because they were controlled by springs, if he wanted to keep his mouth shut, Washington had to permanently clench his jaw. You can get a better idea of how the contraption worked in the video from Mount Vernon below.

Washington's Dentures from Mount Vernon on Vimeo.

There are plenty of lessons we can learn from the life of George Washington, but perhaps the most salient is this: You should definitely, definitely floss.

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios