Creativity

August 14, 2014 at 6:43 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

Indians wait in line to have coconuts smashed over their skulls: “Thousands of people flock to Tamil Nadu, a southern Indian state, to take part in the painful practice every year. Men, women and even children patiently sit in lines as godmen are handed large coconuts, before bringing them crashing down on their skulls. The ritual is thought to have started in the 19th century and attracts thousands to Tamil Nadu each year. Many wince in pain, while others – apparently in a meditative state or simultaneously praying – barely flinch. Each year dozens are tended by medical staff for serious injuries – prompting doctors to warn that the practice is potentially deadly and ironically hazardous to health. Anil Kumar Peethambaran, a neurosurgery professor at the Indian governments medical college, told local media: ‘There is a certain amount of tolerance for the skull beyond which it will cause damage.

Caretaker’s death ends charges he drank £200,000 worth of old whiskey: “The former live-in caretaker of a Pittsburgh-area mansion has died, ending criminal charges that he drank more than $102,000 worth of old whiskey that he was supposed to be guarding. A district judge in Pennsylvania last year ordered 63-year-old John Saunders, of Irwin, to stand trial after hearing testimony from the owner of the South Broadway Manor Bed and Breakfast. But the Tribune-Review reports Saunders died July 21, ending the case. The mansion’s owner had claimed she found nine 12-bottle cases of whiskey hidden in the century-old mansion built by industrialist J.P. Brennan after she bought it in 2012. The whiskey was produced in the early 1900s and was appraised at more than $2,000 a bottle. Saunders was charged after the owner discovered 52 empty bottles on which police found DNA from Saunders’ saliva.”

Bungling transport workers put bus timetable on a pole that’s nowhere near a bus stop: “A bus company in Cornwall has confused commuters after attaching a timetable to a lamppost down the road from where passengers can actually get on to the bus. Bus company First Group said they were forced to put the sign up on a pole 400 yards from the bus stop because it was the closest post they could attach it to. The rogue timetable has lead to some residents in St Austell, Cornwall, waiting for buses in the wrong spot, with one local claiming a man was clipped by a car while trying to walk to the lamppost. Local resident Andrew Perrin said: ‘It is a death trap to walk there. Some of the buses have refused to stop there because that road is just so bad.’ He added that some buses have even started stopping next to the timetable, further adding to the confusion.

Prisoner, 27, escapes from hospital after police mistakenly guard elderly patient: “A prisoner who had swallowed a bag of heroin was allowed to escape from hospital because police were guarding the wrong patient. Officers mistook an entirely innocent, bed-ridden elderly man at Aintree Hospital for Craig Clamp, 27, a drug addict who had been arrested on suspicion of shop-lifting. It was only when, half an hour later, a nurse asked where Clamp was – and after the older patient had offered them a Werther’s Original – that the two officers realised that they had been given the slip. CCTV footage showed Clamp, who had been taken to hospital by arresting officers after swallowing a bag of hard drugs, escaping across the car park “at a fairly brisk trot,” Liverpool Crown Court was told. Clamp was on the run for a day-and-a-half before police picked him up four miles away, in Bootle, elsewhere in Merseyside, on May 9. A judge has now sentenced Clamp, who has many previous convictions, to 17 weeks in jail”

Is your coffee uncut?: “Unscrupulous coffee producers are bulking out ground beans with lumps of earth and bits of wood, researchers have found. Ground coffee is being supplemented with cheaper ‘filler’ ingredients including the likes of corn, barley, wheat, soya beans and rice. The likes of acai seed, brown sugar and starch syrup are also reported to have been found in the product before it reaches supermarket shelves and restaurants. Cases of unwanted ingredients in the drink come amid growing coffee shortages in regions, such as Brazil, where droughts and plant diseases have dramatically cut back supplies. But scientist Suzana Lucy Nixdorf and her team at State University of Londrina in Brazil say they have developed a way to nip coffee counterfeiting in the bud. The new test uses liquid chromatography – a sensitive analytical technique – allowing a closer look at the product ‘in an unbiased way,’ according to Ms Nixdorf.”

And don’t forget to catch up with all the Strange Justice before you go.

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