Sally Ride’s birthday passed by at the end of May
We’ve all been drawn to the “strange and weird” sections of newspapers and websites, our curiosity getting the better of us. There typically is no real shortage of these weird news stories, either. But there sure are some fantastic front-runners this year that take the cake. But, we still have a few odd weeks left in the year, so who knows, maybe we’ll see an influx of even stranger tales before the year is done! But for now, do enjoy these wacky and weird stories from this past year!
1. Man Escapes From Prison, Then Goes Back To Prison
The winter season is for plotting your prison escape, not performing it. That’s what the summer is for! Apparently an inmate at minimum security prison Blackburn Correctional Complex in Lexington, Kentucky, never got that memo. Forty-two-year-old Robert Vick found his way out of the facility on Sunday, January 5. Wearing only his prison jumpsuit to shield him from the insane temperatures of the Polar Vortex, Vick quickly changed his mind, stopping in at a local motel and asking the desk clerk to call the police so he could turn himself in, back to the cozy warmth of his cell.
2. Pastafarian Politician
A small town in New York state elected their first Pastafarian council member earlier this year. Pomfret, New York saw the dawn of a new era as Christopher Schaeffer was sworn into the town’s council in early January, sporting the religion’s holy head-wear, a colander, upon his head as he took office. Schaeffer said, “It’s just a statement about religious freedom. It’s a religion without any dogma.”
3. PoPo Want To Put Poker In Pokey
You just can’t make this stuff up. New Orleans police are on the hunt for a serial poker, who they have identified as Jeannene Meyer. She is wanted for allegedly making her way down a street in the French Quarter and poking pedestrians with a sharp object earlier this month. Two men have suffered minor injuries thus far.
4. Fighting With Your Beer Hands
Who knew that beer could be such a lifesaver? When a man standing outside of a KFC in a town near Boston earlier this month, he was accosted by a group of teenagers. With the intention to mug the man, one of the perpetrators pulled out a knife. That’s when the victim’s survival instincts kicked into high gear. He realized that he also held a perfectly suitable weapon in his hands, a bag of beer cans. He began swinging it at the group, who immediately dispersed. After identifying the group to the police, a short chase ensued, but the group was quickly apprehended and charged with armed robbery and resisting arrest.
5. Cat-uccino, Anyone?
America’s first “Cat Cafe” opened up in late October in Oakland, California. While quite popular internationally, the Cat Town Cafe is the first of its kind in the United States. Patrons can purchase a cup of coffee, and spend up to an hour mingling and playing with the cafe’s resident cats, who are all available for adoption. The owners of the establishment hope that their efforts will pay off and help them find homes for their furry feline friends.
6. Tubby Thievery
Looks like Laa-Laa got himself into some real trouble this past year when Terez Owens, a Pennsylvania resident donned the famed yellow Teletubbie costume and broke into a friend’s home. But the Lehigh University student wasn’t after expensive jewelry or electronics. In fact, all Owens stole was some leftover Chinese food, dumping it into a purse he had with him and spilling some on the kitchen floor. The oddest of all, though? This case isn’t the weirdest one that police chief Mark DiLuzio has seen. DiLuzio said, “I have seen Rudolph The Reindeer get arrested, Santa get arrested, and now a Teletubby. You can’t make this stuff up.”
7. Beer Bottle Prank Could Help Explain Eruptions
Next time you’re at the bar, you may want to look a little closer at your beer bottle. Researchers from Carlos III University of Madrid in Spain were out having a drink together when one of them performed a trick where one taps a freshly opened beer bottle on the counter, causing the beverage inside to foam up and out of the bottle, causing a large sudsy mess. But when they did that trick, the others paid attention, and now they believe that this simple bar joke can help explain the deadly eruptions of lethal gasses.
8. Parrot Lost For Four Years, Found Speaking Spanish
Pájaro bonito! Four years ago, Darren Chick, a British expatriate lost his African gray parrot, Nigel. The bird spoke with a distinguished British accent. Earlier this year, the bird was found, and Chick learned that Nigel had been taken in by a Spanish-speaking family, and had been residing with them for the past four years, until the bird flew off once more. While living with the family, The bird picked up on their language and is now a bilingual bird. After Chick learned about the family’s heartbreak upon learning the bird had an original owner before they purchased it at a garage sale some years ago, Chick decided to relinquish Nigel (named Morgan by the other family), to the care of his new-found friends.
9. We Experienced A Velveeta Cheese Shortage
The heavenly tasting cheesy staple in so many game day dishes such as chili con-queso, macaroni and cheese, and more, seemed to have disappeared for a short while in the beginning of the year. Jody Moore, a Kraft foods spokesperson commented on the issue and said, “It is possible consumers in any part of the country may not be able to find some Velveeta products.” While the story was picked up by many major news stations including NPR and ABC, others touted the story as a “publicity stunt” by the food company.
10. BRB, Getting Arrested. But First, Let Me Take A Selfie.
If a criminal is going to commit a crime, you at least would think that they would be a bit smarter about it. Not so for a woman from West Frankfort, Illinois. Authorities say 27 year-old Danielle Saxton stole a multitude of items from Mortie’s Boutique in West Frankfort, including jewelry and clothing, as well as a rather distinctive brightly-colored leopard print dress, which is pretty hard to miss. Saxton must have been so proud of her haul that she decided to take a “selfie” in her brand new dress. When the store’s co-owner wrote about the incident on Facebook and listed the stolen items, people immediately connected Saxton with the crime, as she was posting photos of her stolen wares on the social networking website, for all the world to see.
11. Stab A Watermelon, Get Arrested
A Connecticut man was arrested earlier this year, when a woman called the police to complain that the perpetrator was carving the watermelon in a “passive-aggressive” manner. She recalls the incident as “menacing.” A local news station attempted to contact the woman who made the call, but she was not able to be reached for comment.