90 Miles From Tyranny : Weird News Roundup: Craziest Stories You Probably Missed This Week (9/21/19)

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Weird News Roundup: Craziest Stories You Probably Missed This Week (9/21/19)

Welcome back to another week of strange stories, curious chronicles, and aberrant anecdotes. If you missed last week’s list, you can catch it here.There are two poop stories this week, although they are significantly different. One highlights a pigeon with great comedic timing while the other explores a scientific experiment designed to see if it is possible to make a usable knife out of frozen feces. We also have a few strange crime stories for you: two Amish men run from the law, a Mummy Marauder is on the loose, and thieves make off with a solid gold toilet.

10The Three Gorges Water Monster

Videos started surfacing earlier this week showing a long, black figure slithering across China’s Yangtze River. It immediately drew comparisons to the infamous Loch Ness Monster, leading to speculation that China might have its own version of “Nessie” prowling its waters. However, this mystery was put to bed rather quickly and, unfortunately, the truth is far less exciting.Clips of the Three Gorges Water Monster, as it was nicknamed, first circulated on Chinese social media platforms where they garnered tens of millions of views and, eventually, made their way to the West. After one professor opined that, if real, the creature was likely a large water snake, there was talk of the animal mutating to gigantic size due to the pollution in the river.A few days later, the “serpent” was discovered to be just a piece of floating debris, although its exact nature is still unclear due to conflicting reports. One Chinese news outlet claimed it was a long piece of rubber tubing which detached itself from a shipyard. Meanwhile, state broadcaster CCTV said it was a mesh sunshade that got dislodged from the nearby ferry terminal and got wrapped up in such a way that it formed a snake-like figure.[1] 

9Pigeon Poop Problem Provokes Politician

A Chicago lawmaker was doing an interview discussing the pigeon poop problem at an infamous bus station when one of the birds made a bold statement to highlight the issue—the pigeon pooped on him. The Irving Park Blue Line station has a reputation among Chicago residents as the “pigeon poop station”. Located underneath the Kennedy Expressway, the entrance has an underpass right above the commuter path where the birds sit and defecate at will. There is, at least, one official who is trying to do something about it. State Representative Jaime Andrade has been trying to secure funds to deal with the problem since last year. Recently, he was doing another interview with a local TV station on the matter. Just as he was bad-mouthing the pigeons, one of them pooped right on his head.[2] Not one to miss an opportunity, he pointed out that this is exactly what his constituents have to deal with.Delays in settling the matter seem to be caused by a technicality over who is responsible for the pigeons. Last year, Andrade secured money from the state budget, but those funds went to the Chicago Transit Authority which has purview over the bus station as it is part of the Kennedy Expressway. The underpass, however, is not considered part of the station and falls under the jurisdiction of the Illinois Department of Transportation, while the sidewalk where the birds poop is the responsibility of the City of Chicago.

8Cattle Semen Lost In Fire

A fire at a genetics lab in Yarram, Victoria, Australia, led to the destruction of 100 cryogenic cylinders of cattle semen.In the early hours of Tuesday morning, the storage facility for Yarram Herd Services caught fire. It took firefighters two hours to contain the blaze but, by then, it was too late: everything inside the building had been destroyed.The biggest loss was 100 receptacles which stored cattle semen. The company offers herd testing, artificial insemination (AI), and other services to many farmers in the region who often choose to store the genetic material from their own animals at the facility. The value of the destroyed goods is particularly high right now as we just entered AI season. The cylinders themselves were worth between $500 and $1,000 each while their contents were considerably more valuable. Bull semen is worth anywhere between $5 and $95 per straw.[3] This blaze proved to be a unique challenge for firefighters. Initially, they had to remain in a defensive position. The heat caused the fluid inside the cylinders to expand which, in turn, prompted the lids to fly off as high-speed projectiles. Investigators are still looking into the cause of the fire.

7The Hunt For The Mummy Marauder

While everyone was focussed on newly discovered photos of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in blackface (which he, weirdly, blamed on “white privilege”), they missed this curious tale of a guy in white face!On Friday the 13th, a criminal robbed the First Convenience Bank in Harris County, Texas, near Houston. He threatened the teller and left with an undisclosed sum of money, speeding away in a black Mitsubishi Montero SUV. To conceal his identity, the man wrapped himself in white gauze. To further obscure his likeness, he also wore sunglasses, a wig, and a baseball cap. However, it really was the linen wrappings that stood out and subsequently earned the criminal the moniker of the “Mummy Marauder”.According to the FBI, the culprit was a black male in his early 20s, around 1.8 meters (5’11”) tall and medium build. They released images of the suspect in the hope that someone could help identify him. A $5,000 reward for information leading to his arrest was offered by Crime Stoppers of Houston.[4]

6Don’t Drink & Jive

Police in Ohio are on the lookout for two Amish men who fled the scene after being stopped by deputies for drinking while driving their horse buggy.Last Sunday night, an officer from Trumbull County observed an unusual scene as a buggy drove past him. It was fitted with a sound system with giant speakers and there was an open case of...

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