News of the Weird by the Editors at Andrews McMeel Syndication

LEAD STORY -- Mystery Solved

Along the Iroise coast in Brittany, France, residents have been puzzled by a mysterious phenomenon for more than 30 years. Broken pieces of orange plastic landline phones in the shape of the cartoon character Garfield have been washing up on the beach. BBC News reports the mystery has now been solved: A local farmer remembered the phone parts started showing up after a particularly fierce storm in the early 1980s, and, more important, he also knew the location of a lost shipping container -- in a sea cave accessible only at low tide. Members of the Ar Viltansou anti-litter campaign climbed down to the cave and found not only the remains of the container, but also more Garfield phones, preserved better than any that had made it to the beach. The container cannot be removed, so officials have pledged to keep picking up Garfield phones as they wash ashore. [BBC News, 3/28/2019]

Unclear on the Concept

Bystanders at Moscow's Domodedovo Airport got an unexpected show on March 23 when an unnamed man made his way through Ural Airlines flight registration, then suddenly stripped off all his clothes and ran onto the jet bridge. A fellow passenger told REN TV: "He shouted that he was naked because clothing impairs the aerodynamics of the body. He flies with more agility when undressed." The nude man, who hails from Yakutsk but lives near Moscow, was intercepted by airport staff before he made it to the plane and was turned over to police, then moved to a hospital. Witnesses said he did not appear to be drunk. [The Moscow Times, 3/24/2019]

Every Day's a Holiday

You don't need to be celebrating a birthday to get a special cake these days. In Nashville, bakers at Signature Desserts made the news in early March when they filled an order for a woman trying to sweeten the deal for her husband, who was undergoing a vasectomy. FOX 17 reported the cake was decorated with lemons and read, "100% Juice, No Seeds. Happy Vasectomy!" The pleased recipient "loved it!" according to his wife. The news outlet also reports that doctors see a big spike in vasectomies during the NCAA basketball tournament, when men have a constant source of entertainment as they heal. [FOX 17, 3/9/2019]

Fashion Victim

I hate when this happens: Jarred Randal Womack, 37, agreed to exchange pants with another man in Boulder, Colorado, on Jan. 22, but after the trade, he decided he didn't like the other man's pants after all, so Womack stabbed the man in the back. Detectives investigating the incident later found the pants in question soiled with feces, which "could be the reason for the altercation," according to the police affidavit. The Daily Camera reported that Womack was eventually charged with first-degree attempted murder, two counts of first-degree assault and robbery; the stabbing victim sustained life-threatening injuries. [Daily Camera, 1/25/2019]


At Palapas Tacos in Anaheim, California, the menu is presented in English and Spanish, which proved to be a bridge too far for one customer on March 25. On that day, a Monday, the unnamed man saw a sign advertising "Fish Tacos for $1.99 All Day" under the heading "Especial de Viernes," or Friday Special. He became upset when he found out he couldn't get the Friday special on Monday, yelling, "That's bulls---! It says it in Mexican. We're not in Mexico. We're in America! ... I'm an American!" Palapas' owner Juan del Rio followed the man outside to talk with him, but the man pulled out his phone, saying he was going to call "Immigration! Because you're not legal!" "I just feel like it's sad that there's people (who) actually think like that," del Rio told FOX 11. "But over a taco?" [FOX 11, 3/27/2019]

Mistaken Identity

Passengers on a Melbourne, Australia, commuter train dove under seats, cried and texted their loved ones on March 28 when police locked down the Flagstaff Station in response to a report of a man with a rifle case acting suspiciously, according to the Associated Press. As it turned out, Will Austin, a busker aboard the train, was performing breathing exercises in advance of playing his didgeridoo -- an indigenous wind instrument that Austin was carrying in a long bag. Oblivious to police wearing body armor and carrying assault rifles, Austin admitted "I probably looked pretty suspicious, I suppose, just waltzing around and slowly walking out" before officers stopped him to search his bag. Nothing to see here. [Associated Press, 3/28/2019]

Suspicions Confirmed

-- Two employees of an Enterprise Rent-a-Car store in Arnold, Missouri, couldn't figure out why they suddenly felt dizzy and shaky on March 14, but after visiting an urgent care, they were transferred to a nearby hospital, KMOV reported. Police Lt. Clinton Wooldridge said officers questioned an unnamed 19-year-old Enterprise employee who admitted he put LSD in the water bottles of two of his co-workers, as well as in a third worker's coffee cup, because they had "negative energy." The two affected workers were fine after the drug wore off, and law enforcement is waiting for lab results before charging the young man, possibly with second-degree assault and possession of a controlled substance. [KMOV, 3/22/2019]

-- The nerve! Solange Troncoso paid $1.99 for a bag of TGI Fridays Sour Cream & Onion Potato Skins at a Bronx convenience store in June 2018. On March 27, she filed suit against TGI Fridays in the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of New York, claiming that the company misleads consumers because the snacks contain potato flakes and potato starch -- but no skins. According to Reuters, Troncoso claims she and other consumers have been defrauded into buying an "inferior product." [Reuters, 3/27/2019]


Along the border between Mexico and the United States, the battle over a wall rages on. But one Los Angeles artist has taken matters into his own hands. Inspired to "Make America Grate Again," Cosimo Cavallaro is repurposing blocks of expired cotija, a hard cheese from Mexico, to build his own wall in Tecate, California. Cavallaro's wall is 5 feet high, and he hopes to make it about 1,000 feet long, he told the Los Angeles Times. "To spend all this money to keep dividing the countries, I think is a waste," Cavallaro said. "You see the waste in my wall, but you can't see the waste in (Trump's) $10 billion wall, which in time will be removed? It sounds cheesy, but just love one another." [Los Angeles Times, 3/27/2019]

Police Report

Seventeen Chicago police officers raided a home on Feb. 10 with a search warrant in hand as a 4-year-old child's birthday party was underway. The suspect they sought hadn't lived at that address for five years, WLS TV reported, but that didn't stop officers from smashing the birthday cake, trashing the apartment and pointing guns at the birthday boy and his 7-year-old sister, who has now developed a fear of police officers, according to her mother. None of the contraband items listed in the warrant were found at the home. On March 26, the family filed a civil rights lawsuit in federal court. [WLS TV, 3/26/2019]

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