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February 6, 2015 at 11:43 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

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THE NEWS

Odd news from around the world

People power beats bureaucracy for once: “A band of villagers who clubbed together to save their postman have won a victory over the Royal Mail by forcing the organisation to back down on the decision to change his route. Mick Leak has delivered the post in the village of Chetnole, Dorset for 24 years – but last month he was told that the community would be taken over by a senior colleague. Locals launched a petition and turned the village hall into a campaign headquarters, leading to a Royal Mail U-turn as the other postman agreed to pull out and allow Mr Leak to keep his route. Chetnole has been part of Mr Leak’s daily rounds since the early 1990s, and he is relied upon to ‘keep an eye open’ for vulnerable residents, according to villagers. ‘Mick is the most reliable person, he knows everybody in the village and he keeps an eye open for people, lets neighbours know if he sees anything out of the ordinary. We rely on him’. Chetnole has a population of 350 people with a local pub, village shop and post office, as well as a railway station where trains stop on request.”

Memoirs of an Australian geisha: “Melbourne-born Fiona Graham lives a life starkly different to any Australian- working in one of Japan’s largest cities as the first Caucasian geisha in the notoriously secretive profession in almost 400 years. Ms Graham, formally debuted as a geisha in 2007 after a life-long fascination with Japanese culture and a lengthy training period. Working under the name ‘Sayuki’, which means ‘transparent happiness’, she was first introduced to Japan on a school trip when she was just 15, and was so taken with the country that she moved to continue her schooling at a Japanese High School. After attending the country’s prestigious Keio University, Sayuki went on to study a doctorate in social anthropology at Oxford, where she developed a particular interest in the exclusive geisha world. In a groundbreaking move, Sayuki was accepted into a ‘okiya’, a geisha training house, where she was taught the rituals, customs, and practices of living as a geisha. Despite the often tawdry reputation that the geisha world has in Western society, the women are regarded as artists, specialising in particular skills and offering entertainment, along with companionship, to their clients.”

World’s Strongest Viking is another Icelander: “Game of Thrones actor Hafthór ‘Thor’ Björnsson has broken a 1,000-year-old weight lifting record to become ‘The World’s Strongest Viking’. The 26-year-old lifted a 30-foot log, weighing 1,433lbs on his shoulders and carried it for five steps during the World’s Strongest Viking competition in Norway. The Icelandic strongman, who plays Gregor ‘The Mountain’ Clegane on the drama series based on the books by George R R Martin, has now got his eyes on the World’s Strongest Man-title. His feat beat the previous record set by a legendary Icelander named Orm Storulfsson, who carried a log that weighed 640 kilograms [1410 lb] for three steps before his back reportedly broke. Following his record-breaking lift, Björnsson, whose last name translates to ‘Bear’s son’, posted on his Instagram:’Well, today my friends, I made history! At 6ft9in, Björnsson began his sports career as a professional basketball player in Reykjavik, but was forced to give up on his dreams following a serious knee injury.

Texter misses incredible sight of humpback whale just a metre away … because he’s on his phone: “WE’RE so addicted to our smartphones, we often fail to appreciate the moment. But this man was even more oblivious than most, missing a once-in-a-lifetime close encounter with a humpback whale because he was glued to the screen. Photographer Eric Smith captured the magnificent sight of the whale and her calf surfacing right beside the oblivious texter at Redondo Beach, California. The beautiful creatures were only a metre from the private sailboat where the man was sat on the deck.
But he failed to even look up. He said he had about five photos of whales breaching with the boat in the background, but the man was staring at his phone in every single one”.

British supermarket says you can’t buy fruit if you’re under 18: “A stunned shopper has ridiculed troubled supermarket Tesco after being told she needed ID to buy fruit because it could ferment and turn into alcohol. Kate Lancaster, 37, from Plymouth, was trying to buy a packet of melon and grapes at the self-service checkout of a Tesco Metro when a warning appeared saying the product was age restricted. She left the store when no staff member came to help, and when she contacted Tesco to complain she was told the fruit was age restricted because it can be turned into alcohol. Ms Lancaster said she couldn’t believe the response, adding that it was ‘crazy’ and went against health advice to get children to eat more fruit. A Tesco spokesman said: ‘Our customer service colleague’s comment about natural fermentation was meant as a joke – we’re sorry if it was taken literally. ‘Of course we have no plans to age restrict fruit sales. Our team have apologised for any confusion and are sending Mrs Lancaster a fruit basket as a gesture of goodwill.’

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

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