Horseman of Sandy

Hurricane Sandy has stormed across several Caribbean countries leaving devastation in its wake before slamming into United States.

Hurricane Sandy
Picture taken by NASA and sourced from http://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/8125127055/

As of writing Hurricane has caused 101 fatalities across the region and caused millions of dollars worth of property damage.

But any disaster is incomplete without portents of doom.

In Sandy’s case, she has her own horseman of the apocalypse.

The man behind the stunt to appears to be Jimmy Kruyne who tweeted a few minutes before Horseman’s appearance “The news crew is down the block, Im thinking horse mask and swimming trunks?”

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50 Foot Cowboy Burns

As the saying goes, everything is bigger in Texas.

But perhaps nothing was quite as big as the 50 foot cowboy, Big Tex

With his 75 gallon hat, 50 pound belt buckle and a pre-recorded “Howdy, folks!” Big Tex had welcomed people to the Texas State Fair for 60 years.

Till he burnt to death last Friday.

According to state officials, the fire started in his right boot and then rapidly ascended up his body like a chimney.

The flames quickly consumed his 75 gallon hat, his 50 pond belt buckle, his clothes and his fibreglass face, quickly leaving no more that a skeletal steel frame.

Like most of the Texan cowboys of Hollywood, Big Tex went down talking. Bill Bragg, the man who provided the voice of Big Tex was performing his live announcements when someone rushed to tell him the cowboy was on fire.

“It was a quick end.” he said of the fire which consumed the Texas icon.

Emergency crews were quickly called to the scene, but some dispatchers took a playful approach to the incident, with one calling in ” “Got a rather tall cowboy with all his clothes burned off,”.

There weren’t any laughs from fair goers and staff however with many crying at the scene.  One of whom was Christi Erpillo, who owns and runs one of the fair’s restaurants. She described the feeling as “We’ve lost a member of the family. … He is one of us. We’ve lost our leader.”

The sorrowful attitude continued long after the flames had finished. Police surrounded the steel skeleton to keep people away, a situation which many said made it look and feel like a crime scene. When he was later pulled down  and placed on a truck with a tarp covering him one woman commented with tears in her eyes “It’s like he’s in a body bag.”

It doesn’t appear Big Tex will be out of the picture for long however. Numerous Dallas city officials have called for him to be rebuilt including the mayor, Mike Rawlings who tweeted “Dallas is about Big Things and #BigTex was symbolic of that. We will rebuild Big Tex bigger and better for the 21st Century.”

Some however have commented that considering recent trends in the ethnic demographics of Texas, that he should rebuilt as a Hispanic cowboy called El Tejas Grande.

As for us at theweeklyweird, well we can only think of one thing when people talk about rebuilding Big Tex.

Sources Used:

http://www.dallasnews.com/entertainment/state-fair-of-texas/headlines/20121019-big-tex-burns-got-a-rather-tall-cowboy-with-all-his-clothes-burned-off.ece

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Man Arrested for Attacking Stop Sign

We’ve all been there, you’re in your car, in a rush to get somewhere and you’re brought to an abrupt halt by a traffic sign. Suddenly that small window you had to get to your class, your job or dentist appointment shrinks as you obey the rules of the road.

Traffic signs and signals (especially when we’re found in violation of them) are one of those inanimate objects which make us boil beneath our skin .

Raymond Garcia, we might presume, is a man for whom enough was enough. He was determined to teach traffic signs everywhere a lesson.

That is till the police got involved.

And yes we are aware of the irony in failing to stop attacking a stop sign.
Image sourced at http://www.flickr.com/photos/donkeyhotey/6503264653/

Last Friday police in Roswell, New Mexico responded to a report that a man was attacking a stop sign. From his behaviour officers thought the man (later identified by police as Garcia) was under the influence of drugs.

According to police once they arrived at the scene Garcia ceased his attacks on the sign and began to act belligerently towards the officers.

Garcia then tried to run but officers tased him. And this is where things get a little crazy.

While the Taser darts were in him Garcia started to kick the police officers as they got closer.

So they tased him again, but Garcia tore the Taser darts from his stomach.

This is quite unusual because when someone is shot with a Taser the electrical current is supposed to lock up their body and incapacitate them.

Perhaps feeling a little out gunned in the face of a man immune to electricity one of the officers pulled out his baton to subdue Garcia.

Garcia was having none of that however and wrestled the baton away from the officer and attempted to use it him.

Having had both electricity fail and their weapons turned against them the officers resorted to chemical means spraying Garica with pepper spray.

Even this didn’t stop Garcia however who simply wiped the mace from his face and allegedly tried to make his escape while throwing the baton at officers.

Garcia’s alleged rampage did come to an end however and three officers were able to cuff him and he has been charged with aggravated assault against a peace officer, disarming, and resisting officers.

As to where his resistance to Tasers and pepper spray came from? Sabrina Morales of Roswell Police department thinks it was due to drugs “Usually when somebody is tased, their muscles contract and don’t allow them to do anything, and that’s why you normally see them fall to the ground. So this person, Garcia, had to be on some sort of drug possibly that was not allowing his system to react normally.”

That being said police did not find any drugs on Garcia’s person when they arrested him.

It is unknown if the stop sign will be pressing charges.

 

Sources used:

http://www.krqe.com/dpp/news/crime/man-fights-traffic-sign-takes-on-cops

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Bizarrely Coloured Honey Leaves Beekeepers Feeling Blue

It may bee unbeelievable-okay we’ll stop there.

Beekeepers from the French town of Ribeauvillé didn’t find the situation funny however when their bees mysteriously started producing green and blue honey.

You have to admit, pancakes with green or blue honey on them would be awesome.Image sourced from http://www.flickr.com/photos/sionakaren/3870732249/ 

After an investigation bee keepers discovered that the blue and green hue was a result of bees shunning local flowers and instead visiting a bio-gas factory 4km away to feast on M&M’s.

Bees…apparently as immune to confectionery as we are.Image sourced at http://www.flickr.com/photos/pondapple/6561705789/sizes/o/in/photostream/ 

M&M’s (for the uninitiated) are small chocolates coated in multicoloured sugar shells. The colouring used in the shells was ingested by the bees which then returned to their hives to produce the oddly coloured honey.

The bio gas factory processes waste from a chocolate factory for the confectionery giant  Mars, and kept waste M&M’s in open containers.

In a attempt to resolve the problem the factory’s manages have cleaned the containers and have said that in the future all incoming waste M&M’s will be kept in a covered hall.

The problem is a serious one for the beekeepers of Ribeauvillé, who faced with the challenges presented by the global decline in bee populations are now burdened with a quantity of blue and green honey.

André Frieh, head of the local beekeepers’ association, said that while the blue and green honey tasted exactly the same as honey, it just isn’t the same.

“For me, it’s not honey,” he told Reuters. “It’s not sellable.”

Perhaps (considering honey’s preservative powers) the beekeepers should store it and then sell it annually on St. Patrick’s day?

It’s also quite obvious that Mars has been focusing its advertising campaign on the wrong coloured M&M’s.

Sources used:
http://www.france24.com/en/20121004-mms-crazed-french-bees-produce-blue-green-honey-ribeauville-alsace-france?fb_action_ids=10151386637299505&fb_action_types=og.recommends&fb_source=aggregation&fb_aggregation_id=288381481237582

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The ‘Devil Monster’ of Lake Labynkyr

A number of Russian academics are calling for a scientific expedition to the remote Siberian  Lake Labynkyr to solve the mystery of the monster that supposedly dwells there.

The monster, sometimes referred to as the ‘Russian Loch Ness Monster’, (or ‘Nesski’) and know locally as ‘the Devil’ has featured in local folklore since the 19th century.

According to the stories the creature has a dark grey body about seven metres in length. A massive ‘bird-like’ jaw takes up a third of its body length and its mouth has the width of ”a fisherman’s raft made of ten logs” (approximately 1.5m).  In these stories the monster savagely attacks people or animals in both the water and on the shores of the 60-80m deep lake  .

Recent scientific expeditions to the lake have provided some credence for the creature’s existence. Doctor Lyudmila Emeliyanova, a biogeographer from Moscow State University was conducting sonic scans of the lake in 2002 when she had an encounter she couldn’t explain:

“It was our fourth or fifth day at the lake when our echo sounding device registered a huge object in the water under our boat” she said in an interview with The Siberian Times.

Doctor Emeliyanova said that the object was”clearly alive” and too large to be one of the fish species in the lake.

She described how “I was very surprised but not scared nor shocked, after all we did not see this animal, we only registered a strange object in the water. But I can clearly say – at the moment, as a scientist, I cannot offer you any explanation of what this object might be.”

Other such surveys of the lake have reported similar mysterious encounters. In 2006 researchers were undertaking a study of the fish species of the lake when they encountered multiple large creatures on their scanner. Too large for any of the known local fish species. Their scan results, and interpretive drawings, can be viewed here.

Fishermen have also reported eerie encounters in the lake. Some have reported having boats up to 10m being lifted by something passing underneath.

Monster sightings have also occurred at the nearby Lake Vorota leading to locals and academics to theorize that the lakes are connected by underground tunnels. The most famous of these sightings was from respected Soviet geologist Viktor Tverdokhlebov whose report of a monster sighting was initially covered up by Soviet authorities.

Theories for what the monster might actually be are varied. Some think that the monsters might be prehistoric marine reptiles, such as ichthyosaurs or plesiosaurs. Others think that there may a population of Ice Age killer whales that became stranded in the lakes when the glaciers retreated. Perhaps searching for a more mundane explanation, some have suggested that the monster might even be an enormous pike.

Monster sightings are not the only feature that makes Lake Labynkyr unusual. Despite being only 60km from Oymyakon, the coldest inhabited place on the planet, the lake remains inexplicably unfrozen in winter, contrary to all other lakes in the region. Additionally despite supporting 13 species of fish the lake unusually contains no plant life.

Doctor Emeliyanova wishes to return to the lake and explore its mysteries further but has not been able to find sufficient funding. She’ll need to be quick. While under Soviet rule access to the lake was difficult, travel companies are now offering private trips for people to undertake their own monster hunts.

It is also unclear exactly when Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to be photographed capturing the beast.

Two Lakes…Two Monsters…One Survivor
Coming to Theatres this Summer
Image sourced from http://www.flickr.com/photos/worldeconomicforum/3234710388/

Sources used:

http://siberiantimes.com/weird-and-wonderful/news-and-features/features/so-is-there-a-loch-ness-monster-in-siberia/

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Bullsh!t! She obviously defecated on E4!

It’s heartening to know that when your country is €133 billion in debt people can still bond together over gambling where a barnyard animal will defecate next.

In a article for the BBC Kieran Cooke has done the world a favour by exposing us to ‘Cow Dung Bingo’.

‘Cow Dung Bingo’, part of the Irish County of Mayo’s ‘Cow Dung Festival’, is perhaps the most bizarre of a series of events that have sprung up around Ireland in its time of economic crisis.

During ‘Cow Dung Bingo’ first a field is divided into a squares. Secondly bets are taken by the bookies. And finally Betsy (the festival cow) is brought in as the crowd waits in anticipation for her to do her business.

Image sourced from http://www.everystockphoto.com/photo.php?imageId=14161&searchId=81566e986cf8cc685a05ac5b634af7f8&npos=8

Wait for it—wait for it….

Those squares on which she decides to perform win their betters a 1000 euros, a prize not to be sniffed at.

This year punters were lucky with Betsy ending the game after 15 minutes. Last year they were treated to an an hour and a half of what surely must have been nail biting tension before Betsy relived both the crowd and her bowels.

In a mark of how seriously participants take ‘Cow Dung Bingo’ judges use laser measuring devices to ensure the outcome is accurate.

Other events of the ‘Cow Dung Festival’ include the crowning of the ‘Cow Dung Festival Queen’, which is a glowing reference to have on one’s CV.

Mr Cooke describes how “Almost every day, there seems to be a festival of some form in Ireland as people come up with ever more imaginative ideas for having a good time”. The importance of events is obvious when “Talk of bailouts and public sector cutbacks has left many Irish people feeling demoralised” (source).

Image sourced from: http://www.everystockphoto.com/photo.php?imageId=14161&searchId=81566e986cf8cc685a05ac5b634af7f8&npos=8

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Bacon and Whisky

Now that I have your attention.

I wish I could say that a coupling of two of humanity’s favourite things was a joyous occasion but sadly that is not the case.

A truck carrying 200 pigs collided with another truck loaded with hundreds of whisky bottles.

The incident occurred during heavy rains in the Chinese city Nanyang of the Henan province.

Police struggled for over an hour to close the highway after the accident to prevent locals and passing motorists from collecting unbroken bottles and unguarded pigs.

After 5 hours officials managed to clean up the wreckage and reopen the highway.

However the pigs might have the last laugh. Many of the pigs were destined for the slaughterhouse and immediately fled the scene after the crash.

A police spokesperson confirmed the mass pig escape, saying “There were crops planted along the roadside and many of the pigs made straight for them and simply disappeared,”

On the plus side the whole incident seems to make a lot of the Epic Meal Time recipes feasible.

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