90 Miles From Tyranny : 10 Offbeat Stories You Might Have Missed This Week (5/11/19)

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Saturday, May 11, 2019

10 Offbeat Stories You Might Have Missed This Week (5/11/19)

It is time, yet again, to look at some of the more unusual or unique stories that made their way through the news cycle over the last several days. Click here to check out last week’s offbeat list.This week’s list is feeling a bit intoxicated, as it has stories on beer, meth, and psychoactive drugs. There are also a few bizarre crimes to talk about, including a man who tried to deport his wife and a woman caught trespassing in search of “Agent Penis.”

10Will Japan Run Out Of Beer?

For the first time, Japan will be hosting the Rugby World Cup. Local businesses are only now finding out something that might become a problem later on: Rugby fans drink a lot of beer.The organizing committee for the 2019 Rugby World Cup had a planning meeting with Japanese business operators in which they raised concerns that Japanese bars and hotels will be unable to cope with the huge demands for beer from the approximately 400,000 international visitors expected to show up between September and November. This would cause bad publicity, upset traveling fans, and cost local venues substantial business.The committee informed them that, during the previous world cup hosted in England, beer consumption at the games was six times more than at football matches in the same venues.One prefecture has already taken measures by asking brewers to increase their supply and local bars to extend their opening hours. However, officials still say that, following the briefing from the rugby committee, a beer shortage is “a realistic problem.”[1]

9G.I. Joe Versus The Volcano

Last Wednesday, a man fell 21 meters (70 ft) into the most dangerous volcano in the United States and survived.The 32-year-old was a soldier deployed on a training mission on Hawaii’s Big Island. In his spare time, he decided to visit Kilauea in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. He was part of a group that stopped at the Steaming Bluff overlook when the man decided to take a closer look down into Halema’uma’u Crater.There was a safety railing in place, but the tourist decided to climb over it.[2] The ground gave way under him, and he fell down a 90-meter (300 ft) cliff to his certain doom. However, it seems that Madame Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of fire who lives inside the crater, was feeling benevolent that day. Instead of plummeting all the way to the bottom, the man landed on a ledge.He was rescued a few hours later. He was seriously injured and was airlifted to a medical center. Since then, his condition has been upgraded from critical to stable.

8Take My Wife, Please

A man from Portland, Oregon, received four months in federal prison for trying to bribe an immigration agent to deport his wife.Last May, 48-year-old Antonio Burgos met up with an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officer in a parking lot in Vancouver, Washington. He then offered the agent $3,000 to deport the wife he was divorcing back to El Salvador, where the couple met.[3]The officer reported the incident and set up a sting operation. He recorded two phone calls in which Burgos repeated his proposition. During a face-to-face meeting, the man upped his offer to $4,000 if the agent would also deport his stepdaughter.Burgos was arrested and pleaded guilty to one count of bribery of a public official in November. He was sentenced this Monday.

7How To Party Shaman-Style

Photo credit: Jose Capriles, Penn State
A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences presented the analysis of a 1,000-year-old pouch thought to have belonged to a shaman. Unsurprisingly, it revealed that people back then liked to get really wasted.Anthropologists found the pouch back in 2009 in a rock shelter known as Cueva de Chileno in Bolivia’s Lipez Highlands. It was made out of three fox snouts stitched together and contained traces of multiple psychoactive substances. Scholars believe it could represent the earliest known evidence of ayahuasca, an entheogenic brew used by shamans in spiritual ceremonies.A chemical analysis revealed the presence of dimethyltryptamine (DMT), benzoylecgonine (BZE), bufotenin, cocaine, and possibly psilocin.[4] Also at the site were other items, such as a headband, a snuffing tube, two snuffing tablets, two bone spatulas, and an anthropomorphic figurine. Researchers believe all of them were used in a burial ceremony, as Cueva de Chileno was once a burial site.

6Agent Penis Reporting For Duty

A woman was arrested for trespassing at the CIA headquarters in Virginia and demanding to speak with “Agent Penis.”On May 3, Jennifer Hernandez approached a security officer at the CIA’s visitor center. She wanted two things: to get back her North Carolina ID card and to speak with Agent Penis.A quick check of their records revealed to CIA officials that Hernandez had made multiple appearances over the last few weeks. Each time, she said she was there to talk with her recruiter regarding a job at the CIA. This wasn’t true, so she was told to leave because she was trespassing. The last time this happened, security officers accidentally kept her ID card after officially citing her.Hernandez received her ID back. Agent Penis, however, was unavailable. Other officers escorted her to the bus stop to make sure that she left the premises.[5] When the bus arrived, however, she refused to depart, even when told that she would be arrested otherwise. In the end, she was charged with remaining on an Agency installation after being ordered to leave.

5Across The Atlantic In A Barrel

Photo credit: AFP
People on the tiny Dutch island of St. Eustatius were surprised this week to see an oil tanker with a unique payload. It was carrying a giant, orange barrel with a 72-year-old French ex-paratrooper inside.Back in December, we talked about Jean-Jacques Savin and his plan to cross the Atlantic Ocean in a barrel. He set off....

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