Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – September 29, 2010

Don’t be surprised if your pumpkin is more trick than treat this Halloween. Pumpkin growers across New England say they’re seeing one of the poorest crops ever.  Connecticut farmer Rick Bunnell says he’s hoping to buy pumpkins from neighboring New York State to fill his farm stand. Too much rain has been the problem for pumpkin farmers. So, many pumpkin buyers may get a scare when they see higher prices this fall.  ***MARLAR: Looking for an affordable pumpkin this year?  Well… gourd luck.

The Census Bureau says the overall poverty rate in 2009 (President Obama’s first year in office) climbed to 14.3 percent, or 43.6 million people.  That’s 1 in 7 Americans now living in poverty.  ***MARLAR: Of course, the White House is saying the numbers aren’t being reported correctly.  They say it’s not 1 in 7 living in poverty, it’s actually 6 in 7 who aren’t paying their fair share in taxes.

A hiker on Blewett Pass shot himself in the butt when he put a handgun in his back pocket. The Chelan County sheriff’s office said the 52-year-old Snohomish man had moved his .40-caliber handgun from its holster to his back pocket Saturday to see if that position would be more comfortable.  The Wenatchee World reported the gun fired the bullet down his left buttock and left leg, coming to rest just above the knee. He was treated at Central Washington Hospital in Wenatchee.  ***MARLAR: Where he was known to give all of the doctors and nurses a great laugh.

A would-be burglar who tried to break into a South Carolina restaurant found himself in a tight and a greasy situation. The Post and Courier of Charleston reported a man tried to break into a North Charleston restaurant by climbing down a grease vent. He got stuck and had to wait almost seven hours until he could be freed.  North Charleston Police said the man was discovered shortly before 5 a.m. Monday when an employee heard someone calling for help. Police arrived to find a foot dangling in a vent above a stove.  Kevin Michael Harley of North Charleston was charged with second-degree burglary.  ***MARLAR: Even with all that grease, he still couldn’t give cops the slip.

A Dutch man who was fed up with his neighbor’s dog barking – got his own back when he created his own barking pet.  The man from Soesterberg said: “It was day in, day out the same annoying barking”.  After months of complaining he decided to retaliate.  He added: “I took barking noises from the internet, sampled them, put them in another frequency and played them by a sound amplifier.”  The neighbors immediately called the police who entered the man’s house and pulled the plug on the man’s amplifier.  ***MARLAR: So he bit them.

Rosalie James’ dance partner has two left feet – or make that paws. And two right ones. James and her 7-year-old Australian Labradoodle Rocky are champion canine freestylers. She also helped to organize the Rio Grande Canine Freestylers, an Albuquerque, N.M., group of doggie dancers. James says your pooch doesn’t have to be a wall flower. She says just about any dog can learn to dance. All it takes is practice and patience. She tells the Albuquerque Journal the most important thing about dancing with dogs is to have fun.   ***MARLAR: I hear the fox trot is easy for them.  They freestyle to “Who Let the Dogs Out” and “Hound Dog” and then go cheek to cheek with songs like “Puppy Love.”

Dr. Dale Roznik’s home will soon be his castle. The Milwaukee-area oral surgeon and his wife are building a castle on what had been farmland. They got the idea of a castle home while visiting Germany about six years ago. It’s taken years of planning and construction, but the couple hopes to move in by the end of the year. The castle is topped by four towers. But Roznik tells the Watertown Daily Times his castle doesn’t have a dungeon, just a conventional basement. ***MARLAR: Where he watches Packers games… so either way, it’s a torture chamber.

A New Jersey man has pleaded guilty to stealing 91 lobster tails from an Atlantic City casino’s kitchen by cramming them into his jacket and backpack. He’s been sentenced to four years in prison.  Anthony Jones took the frozen lobsters from Bally’s Atlantic City in February and tried to sneak them out in his jacket and backpack. A security guard monitoring a surveillance camera noticed his clothes were unusually bulky, and stopped him.  He pleaded guilty to burglary on Friday in deal with prosecutors, who dropped additional charges.  ***MARLAR: Like the follow-up robbery of the melted butter store.

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