Odd Stew – Weird and Bizarre News – Issue 16

May 3, 2017

hamburger vanIssue 16 of the Odd Stew: strange news items, oddities, plus other weird and fascinating things that have happened in the news that you may have missed.

He’ll Do Anything for a McDonald’s Burger

An eight-year-old boy took matters into his own hands when he got an incredible craving for a McDonald’s burger on April 9, 2017. He decided to get there by the easiest way possible; a motorized vehicle, specifically his dad’s van. But the boy didn’t know how to drive so he began watching YouTube videos to learn how.

When the boy’s mother fell asleep on the couch of their home, the boy took off in the van toward McDonald’s which was about a mile away. He even took his four-year-old sister along for the ride. Witnesses reported that the boy obeyed traffic laws and even drove the speed limit. He arrived at the McDonald’s drive-thru where employees of the restaurant thought he was part of a prank. They thought his parents were hiding in the backseat. The employees soon realized it was no joke.

The kids got their McDonald’s meal as they waited for their grandparents to pick them up. The grandparents took them to the police station where the parents eventually retrieved the two joyriding children. No charges were filed against the parents.

An Unusual Fire Starter

A fire broke out at the Hillside Chapel Crematory in Cincinnati, Ohio on April 25, 2017. What was the cause? The funeral home was in the process of cremating an overly obese individual when the furnace got hotter than it was supposed to. Luckily, the damage was limited to the cremation area of the funeral home, and firefighters were able to control the fire. The cost of the mistake pushing the furnace past its capability was estimated at $30,000.

A Gassy Lawsuit

A discrimination lawsuit was dismissed in January 2017 that claimed a worker was fired because he passed too much gas.

Richard Cass had gastric bypass surgery in 2010 and was fired from the Case Pork Roll Company in February 2014, but the lawsuit was actually filed by the man’s wife, Louann Clem. Clem also worked at the pork roll company and quit the same day her husband was fired. According to the lawsuit, Clem’s husband suffered from, “extreme gas and uncontrollable diarrhea,” after the surgery. She filed the suit because of the physical and mental anguish her husband’s firing had caused her.

A federal judge dismissed the case citing that the company had not created a hostile work environment because of her husband’s flatulence, though they had made inappropriate comments. It was the second time the federal court had dismissed the lawsuit.

It Must Have Finished Off a Collection

A pair of 305-pound, coin-operated, binoculars were stolen sometime between late February and early March 2017 that overlooked the Mohawk Trail in Florida, Massachusetts. The bronze and cast iron binoculars were cut from their wooden base and taken away. Massachusetts State Police didn’t know why they were stolen but surmised that since very few of the viewers were ever made by a company called Tower Optical, they were considered a valuable collectible.

It’s Not There

A naked man was rescued from the inside of a sandwich shop in Napa, California in March 2017 where he had spent the night. The problem was the man wasn’t trapped in the interior of the sandwich shop but in a narrow shaft that led down into the shop from the roof of the building.

Construction workers arriving at a nearby worksite heard calls for help coming from the closed business and realized someone was stuck inside. Workers had to remove part of a wall to eventually free the man. What was the naked man doing there in the first place? One of the construction workers said the man told him he was looking for a wishing well and had gotten trapped. It’s probably not a surprise that he was taken to a hospital for treatment.

A Frozen Party

For three days in March, a rather odd festival takes place in Nederland, Colorado. The festival is called “Frozen Dead Guy Day” and honors the cryogenically frozen corpse of a Norwegian man named Bredo Morstoel. The festival showcases events such as a frozen salmon toss, a polar plunge, coffin races, and a costume ball. Festival-goers dress in Halloween costumes and the start of the festival is marked by a parade of a dozen hearses.

The man it honors was cryogenically frozen in his native Norway in 1989 in the hopes that he could be brought back in the future. He spent four years in a California facility before being moved by his grandson onto his property outside of Nederland in 1993. Morstoel’s grandson no longer lives in Nederland, but Morstoel is still taken care of by a caretaker who hauls 1,000 pounds of dry ice to his sarcophagus every two weeks to keep him frozen.

Pants on Fire, Literally

A defense attorney in Miami, Florida was making an argument in an arson case to a jury in early March 2017 that his client’s car hadn’t been intentionally set on fire and that it had spontaneously combusted instead. As defense attorney Stephen Gutierrez began speaking, however, he noticed things were getting hotter in the courtroom, and it had nothing to do with what he was saying. His pants pocket was smoldering.

Gutierrez ran from the courtroom and discovered that one of the e-cigarette batteries he was carrying had singed a hole in his pocket. After he tossed it in water, he returned to the courtroom where he had to answer to the judge. He insisted that he hadn’t staged the event, but it didn’t help his case. His client was convicted later in the day of second-degree arson. Prosecutors and Miami police seized the e-cigarette batteries as evidence as they investigated the incident.

Check out past issues of the Odd Stew.

About the author 

Daniel Ganninger - The writer, editor, and chief lackey of Knowledge Stew, the author of the Knowledge Stew line of great trivia books, and editor of Fact World and the Knowledge Stew sister site on Medium. I hope you find things here to annoy those around you with your new found knowledge.

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