Odd Stew – Weird and Bizarre News – Issue 12

April 4, 2016

Thief, Burglar, Security.

Another issue of the Odd Stew: oddities plus other bizarre, strange, and fascinating things that have happened in the news that you may have missed.

He Almost Got Away With It

A burglar broke into a comic book shop in Festus, Missouri in March 2016 and made off with a cash register, $35 in cash, a laptop, and just to keep things weird, he also stole Pokemon cards and two KISS action figures. But that actually wasn’t the strange part. It was that the burglar left his cellphone behind at the crime scene along with a pack of smokes. Police had an easy time finding out who did the theft when the cell phone rang as they were doing their investigation at the Rage Comics and Games shop. After it stopped ringing, the burglar’s picture appeared on the home screen complete with a picture of him flexing his muscles. The police were able to easily find the absent-minded burglar and recovered some of the things that were stolen.

That Has to be a Typo

The Vermont State Police stopped a man after he sped through a stop sign during the early morning hours on March 29, 2016 in a Chevy minivan. A police K9 hit on the driver’s seat of the vehicle but only a cooking cap and a needle were found. No drugs were discovered in the car. But police didn’t stop there. They sent the man to a local hospital where a body cavity search was performed. They ended up finding three condoms located in the man’s rectum that had 1,428 bags worth of heroin inside.

The man admitted that he was transporting the bags from New York to Vermont to be sold, and he was arrested on felony possession of heroin, heroin importation, and heroin trafficking. It seems no one wanted to ask the question how, and probably for good reason.

Think Before You Tweet, Government

On March 30, 2016, the State Department issued an apology for a tweet they sent that was supposed to be a clever travel tip but turned into a social media firestorm. The tip appeared to warn people that weren’t too attractive that they could be more at risk of being robbed while in a foreign country.

The hastage #springbreakingbadly (a bad pun from the show Breaking Bad we assume) was used. The tweet read, “Not a ’10’ in the US? Then not a 10 overseas. Beware of being lured into buying expensive drinks or worse–being robbed. #springbreakingbadly.” The tweet quickly became a point of fodder across the web with many thanking the government (in a mocking way, of course) for the warning that their ugliness could land them in trouble. The State Department ended up deleting the tweet and sent a two tweet apology for offending ugly people everywhere.

Sometimes You Have to Take Matters Into Your Own Hands

A woman in Connecticut had a major problem but didn’t quite understand who to call. It seems the woman ordered a small pizza that was supposed to be half-bacon and half-cheese, but the pizza place she ordered it from, Empire Pizza, sent a half-hamburger pizza. Knowing that this type of travesty shouldn’t be let go without a fight, she called the one place everyone would think to contact with a complaint about a pizza order–911. The Hartford Police Department 911 service answered the call with the woman who asked what she could do to get her money back for a pizza she didn’t order. She then wanted an officer to call the pizza place to get to the bottom of the issue. The 911 dispatcher told her it wasn’t an issue for the police.

The police department did send an officer to the pizza location, but only as a precaution in case the issue got out of hand. The pizza shop, for their part, said they would have given a refund to the woman on her order but she had already polished off half of it.

I’m Living in a Box

Peter Berkowitz found a rather interesting solution to the high rent prices in San Francisco. He constructed a wooden box, or “pod”,  with the help of friends, and placed it in another friend’s living room. Berkowitz pays $508 a month total with $400 going toward rent and the remaining $108 going to offset the cost of building the “pod”. The “pod” cost $13,000 to construct. The man describes his living arrangement as “silly”, but states that it “works for me.” It might not be that bad of an idea. Tenants can use extra space they have in their homes to rent out while someone can have a place they can actually afford, but it does bring a whole new meaning to the idea of neighbors.

Part 2: Living in Box, Living in a Cardboard Box

A cat in England took an unexpected journey across the country in quite a different way. Cupcake, a Siamese cat in Falmouth, England took a nap in a box and was then mailed to Worthing, West Sussex, 260 miles away. The cat’s owner, Julie Bagott, somehow didn’t see her cat sleeping in the box and packed it with DVDs. When the package was opened after the delivery in West Sussex, Cupcake was discovered in the box. It had been eight days since the cat had been packed away. After a veterinary check-up, the cat was identified because of an implanted microchip. The owners had been searching for Cupcake near their home without realizing she had been mailed away. The cat was dehydrated and scared but otherwise healthy and was returned to her owners with a story to tell of her ordeal.

You Might Not Want to Make Lemonade

A woman arrived in Auckland, New Zealand on March 28, 2015 only to be sent back from where she came from. The reason? The woman tried to smuggle six lemons in her pants into the country. She hadn’t declared she was bringing food into the country, and when a security dog got a whiff of what the woman was hiding, the jig was up. She was sent back to Hong Kong where she had departed in the first place. The reason for the zero tolerance on food, and in this case, lemons, is because fruits that are brought in illegally pose a risk to the horticulture industry in the country. Fruits from other parts of the world can have pests or disease that could decimate the crops of New Zealand if they were introduced.

It Could Have Been an Impromptu Party

A fender bender had an ironic twist in Florida on March 30, 2016 when a truck carrying Busch beer and another truck carrying Frito Lay chips ran into each other on Interstate 95. The crash near Melbourne, Florida caused beer and chips to be scattered on the highway. It was almost a match made in heaven. The driver driving the beer truck was ticketed because he swerved from the center lane to the right lane where the chip truck was at causing the mix of two essential party supplies.

It’s Raining Money

On St. Patrick’s Day in 2016, drivers in Wayne, New Jersey saw green when a bag of money fell from an armored car and onto the road. $20 bills were sent flying into the air and scattered over Route 46. Traffic stopped and people started grabbing the money along the roadway. The Wayne police reported that only some people returned the cash. It took the guards from the armored truck 30 minutes to pick up the money, along with the help of police and other bystanders. It’s not known how much money was lost during the accident.

That’s it for another issue of the Odd Stew.  Check back again next time for more bizarre and weird things that you may have missed in your news feed.

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About the author 

Daniel Ganninger - The writer, editor, and chief lackey of Knowledge Stew, the author of the Knowledge Stew line of trivia books, and editor of Fact World and the Knowledge Stew sister site on Medium, our ad-free subscription sites. I hope you learn many new things here that add to your knowledge.

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