Politician(s) in Romania have scrapped plans to introduce a tax on fortune tellers, witches and psychics… because they feared they could be cursed.
Officials in the economically struggling country had planed to start taxing witches in a bid to raise more money.
But despite drafting new laws – which would have also held psychics liable for wrong predictions – the politicians in Romania’s senate bottled it at the last minute.
- Mark H: Romania fortune teller tax dropped because politicians fear they will be cursed (arbroath.blogspot.com)
- Curses! Romanian witch tax foiled (cnews.canoe.ca)
Cocker spaniel Flint could easily have had this cheeky little chick for dinner – but decided to befriend him instead.The orphaned baby sparrow looked in big trouble after he tumbled from his nest into Greg Larcombe’s back garden.Yet rather than attack, patient Flint simply played with his tiny feathered friend, dubbed Chicky by Greg’s excited children.
More via The Sun |News.
Anyone looking for huge amounts of free chocolate should book a flight to Armenia’s capital next month. That’s when the world’s largest chocolate bar will be up for grabs in Yerevan’s main square. The Guinness Book of World Records certified the 9,702-pound (4,410-kilogram) chocolate bar at a ceremony Saturday.
- Armenia produces world’s biggest chocolate bar (boston.com)
- World’s Largest Chocolate Bar Made in Armenia (VIDEO) (blippitt.com)
A giant bale of hay has killed a founding member of the Electric Light Orchestra ELO band after it tumbled down a hill and crashed into his van. Cellist Mike Edwards, 62, died after the 600 kg (1,323 lb) bale rolled down a steep field in Devon, southern England, smashed through a hedge and careered on to the road. He died instantly in the freak accident on Friday afternoon.
- Ex-ELO cellist killed in collision with hay bale (mysanantonio.com)
- Giant hay bale kills former ELO cellist Mike Edwards (guardian.co.uk)
Twenty-four students and four staff members at a central B.C. high school were briefly quarantined after a can of sauerkraut exploded Friday in a food science class
.The fire department, a hazardous materials unit and RCMP were called to Kelly Road Secondary School in Prince George at about 2 p.m. PT. RCMP Const. Lesley Smith said school officials were concerned about a possible botulism outbreak after the contents of a years-old can of pickled cabbage splattered on students.
From Australia’s Northern Territory:
An Australian woman claims she was cut off by two alien beings in a spaceship shaped like a Ford station wagon — before it took off surrounded by green, blue and red flames, the Northern Territory News reported Saturday.
- UFO Shows Up at Australian Rodeo, Northern Territory a Hot Spot for ET (grantlawrence.blogspot.com)
A bobcat climbing a power pole got electrocuted and sparked a five-acre brush fire in California’s Ventura County. County fire Capt. Dan Preston told the Ventura County Star that the bobcat was apparently chasing an owl or another bird when it touched the power lines, caught fire and fell to the ground in a rural area near Piru.
via Yahoo! News.
- Electrocuted bobcat to blame for Ventura County wildfire (latimesblogs.latimes.com)
- Bobcat climbing power pole starts 5-acre fire (sfgate.com)
Rare color footage of the bomb damage inflicted on London during World War II has surfaced on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Blitz. (Voice-over by Edward R. Murrow)
…The film was released Monday by Westminster Council to mark the start of the devastating German bombing campaign that began September 7, 1940, and continued until May 1941.
via CBS News
- Rare color footage of London blitz found (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
An extraordinary collection of items belonging to Worcester native Andrew Haswell Green — a visionary who helped remake New York City in the 19th century — will be sold this week in an unprecedented four-day auction at the DCU Center in Worcester.
Among the thousands of documents, artworks, china, clothing, and toys being sold are handwritten correspondence to and from four presidents and a rare, printed copy of George Washington’s will.
From Green’s death in 1903 until 2009, virtually none of the items had ever been uncrated and examined. Packing boxes sealed more than a century ago were opened only after the death last summer of Julia Green, his great-great-grandniece and distant heiress.
Lots more via The Boston Globe.
Divers have recovered what’s thought to be the world’s oldest beer from a 200-year-old shipwreck in the Baltic Sea.
The find was made as researchers recovered drinkable Champagne from a Russian cargo ship which crashed in the 1780s.
The divers say they were surprised to find a handful of beer bottles during the salvage operation near the Aland Islands.
When one of the bottle just so happened to break, the divers tried some of the dark liquid and say they liked the taste.
- Recovering bubbly in Baltic Sea, divers find beer (sfgate.com)
- Divers find, taste 19th century beer in Baltic Sea (seattletimes.nwsource.com)
- “The World’s Oldest Spirits: Just Found and Still Drinkable!” and related posts (tonic.com)
A retired miner has dug out his own underground home to avoid becoming a ‘mortgage slave’ in China.
Chen Xinnian, 64, didn’t want to spend all of his wages and savings on buying a bigger home, reports the Dahe Daily.
So he put his professional expertise to good use and tunneled out an apartment underneath his existing home in Zhengzhou, Henan province.
A venomous medusa-like beast as long as a blue whale has emerged as an unlikely defender of the world’s oceans.The lion’s mane jellyfish is the largest jellyfish known and a contender for the longest animal of all time. Its bell can be 2.5 metres across, and its tentacles can stretch over 30 metres – about the same length as a blue whale. This is 10 metres longer than the tentacles of the famous Portuguese man-of-war –
via New Scientist.
- Zoologger: The biggest living thing with teeth (newscientist.com)
A strange creature with wings resembling those of a bat and which has been dubbed “the Gargoyle” has attacked several animals and even a human, according to reports issued by residents of Guánica.
Attacks by the “Gargoyle” resemble those of the mythic Chupacabras to a certain extent, given that it operates under cover of darkness and allegedly exsanguinates its victims.
Some people have identified it with the Chupacabras, yet others believe it is a differnt, elusive and sinister entity whose lair is in Barrio Ensenada, amid the ruins and tunnels of the Guanica Sugar Mill, where the skeletons of its victims can be found.
- In Mexico, chupacabras are blamed for 300 goat beheadings [Monsters Among Us] (io9.com)
- All you need to know about El Chupacabra (atomiurl.com)
- Mythical Creature: The Chupacabra (socyberty.com)
Evolution has been caught in the act, according to scientists who are decoding how a species of Australian lizard is abandoning egg-laying in favor of live birth.
Along the warm coastal lowlands of New South Wales the yellow-bellied three-toed skink lays eggs to reproduce. But individuals of the same species living in the state’s higher, colder mountains are almost all giving birth to live young.
Only two other modern reptiles—another skink species and a European lizard—use both types of reproduction.
- Evolution in action. Lizard moves from eggs to live birth (holykaw.alltop.com)
- Australian Lizards on Verge of Evolutionary Leap (unreasonablefaith.com)
- Zoologger: Live birth, evolving before our eyes (newscientist.com)
A security vehicle for Detroit Mayor Dave Bing had its tires and rims stolen when it was parked at an east-side condo building, according to officials from the Detroit Police Department and mayor’s office.
Sgt. Eren Stephens said the vehicle was assigned to the executive protection unit.
A Beaverton (Oregon) man, claiming to be the Washington County Sheriff, called 911 to tell police he needed a towel, hot chocolate, and a hug Saturday morning, but instead he found himself arrested on criminal trespassing charges.
Seems he had been sitting in a private hot tub for around 10 hours.
He did get a chance to warm up in jail, though I doubt there was any hot chocolate.
via KPTV Portland.
Dramatic events have taken place in China over the last few days and that nation’s thousands of UFO researchers and enthusiasts are reeling in shock. One of the heads of China’s famous Purple Mountain Astronomical Observatory, Prof. Wang Sichao, has gone public admitting the UFOs are real and aliens are visiting Earth and that the observatory has observed their craft many times.
The admittance of UFO reality was made yesterday within an official speech entitled tellingly ‘China’s UFO truth’. This news has been extensively reported in China.
The key points that Wang Sichao have disclosed are that:
- Aliens are visiting Earth on R & D expeditions
- These UFOs are probes manned by robots.
- These craft travel at eighty percent the speed of light.
- These craft have been seen by the observatory many times at between 150 and 1500 kilometers above Earth.
- The aliens might use Nuclear fusion to propel their craft.
39 years of work at Purple Mountain Observatory has led Wang to believe these craft use Earth’s gravity to manouvre and stay aloft
- Head of China’s Famed Astronomical Observatory Says UFOs Real (grantlawrence.blogspot.com)
- Frequent Sightings of UFO’s in China | Liquid News (atomiurl.com)
- Why astronomers don’t report UFOs (blogs.discovermagazine.com)