Lead Stories

According to a study reported in the September issue of Nature, the sexual apparatus of the male earwig is thin and brittle and frequently breaks off inside the female, but it has a fully functional spare.

Last month Tokyo’s Mainichi Daily News reported that a 25-year-old

bulimic woman from Toyoda (near Nagoya) had been arrested for violating the country’s Waste Disposal Act. For over a year the woman illegally dumped plastic bags of vomit on city streets; according to police, the woman said, “I didn’t want to throw away the vomit near my home, so I took it to faraway places.”

In 1983 the promising career of boxer Tony Ayala Jr. (26-0, 24 knockouts) was cut short when the fighter drew a 16-year prison term for rape. In July he won a ten-round bout in San Antonio while wearing a court-ordered ankle bracelet so that authorities could monitor his whereabouts; two months earlier he’d been charged with burglary with intent to commit sexual assault.

Wedding Bell Blues

In July 41-year-old Marie Solomon was arrested at a friend’s wedding in Bridgeport, Connecticut, for loudly and incessantly yelling out reasons why the couple should not marry….In May newlyweds Marcia Alarcon and Carlos Alarcon-Schroder were jailed in Des Moines, Iowa, after brawling over whose parents they would visit first….In August 31-year-old Howard Brown was arrested at his own wedding reception in San Antonio, Texas, after allegedly shooting a guest who’d brought too many friends….And that same month 28-year-old Kathy Naylor was arrested in Crystal River, Florida, after following a guest home from her wedding reception and reigniting an earlier brawl.

Can’t Possibly Be True

In August the Wichita Eagle reported that more than a thousand 30-inch-long dried corn-husk leaves had floated down from the sky onto Wichita, Kansas, over the weekend. Townspeople speculate that the incident was an elaborate (and illegal) airplane prank by University of Nebraska football fans, but an evangelical ministry in the area that incorporated the imagery of corn husks into its pro-life message in mid-July regards the event as a sign from on high.

A recent issue of the British Dental Journal cautioned people against using foreign objects to relieve their hemorrhoids, citing the case of one man who used a toothbrush and had to have it removed with biopsy forceps at a hospital.

Shoplifters in Edmonton, Alberta, hit several Blockbuster Video stores in May, but the only items missing were 81 copies of the Sean Connery movie Finding Forrester and 12 copies of Adam Sandler’s Little Nicky.

At Florida’s Okeechobee Rodeo over Labor Day weekend, children as young as three took part in “mutton busting,” trying to stay atop bucking sheep before being dumped on their backsides….And in June state investigators examining the practices of Valdez Community Hospital in Alaska found that several physicians routinely brought their children into offices and operating rooms while they worked; one girl had assisted her father in placing a cast, while another doctor’s four-year-old had caused a scene after being frightened by a patient’s shrieks during a hip-manipulation procedure.

People With Issues

From the July 18 police blotter of the Williamson County Sun in Georgetown, Texas: “At a grocery store on the 600 block of Austin Avenue, a 27-year-old lawn specialist from Round Rock was arrested at 12:46 a.m. on charges of public lewdness. [A] male employee found the male customer between two aisles with his shorts and underwear pulled down around his ankles. The man was bent over and inserting a can of Big and Sexy brand hair spray lubricated with Suave lotion into his rectum. He told arresting officers he was attempting to sexually gratify himself. He was taken to jail.”

Least Competent Criminals

The One Stop Grocery in Kenai, Alaska, was robbed in July when a man with his hand in his pocket pointing a “gun” at the clerk shouted, “Everybody freeze, don’t move. You know what that means.” The store was full of people, all of whom ignored him. The robber snatched some beer from the cooler and shouted, “You people don’t understand. I really mean it.” One customer told him he could get in trouble talking like that. The man cursed, complained that nobody was listening to him, and left with the beer.

Police in Highland Heights, Kentucky, charged 44-year-old Kevin Shegog with seven gas station robberies in July after a witness told them the getaway car’s license plate read “SHEGOG.”

A Long Day at the DMV

Recent budget cuts at the Department of Motor Vehicles in South Carolina have made the wait for services so lengthy that an elderly man waiting in line at a Spartanburg facility lost control of his bowels and left a mess on the floor. Because the DMV had privatized its janitorial service, no one was available to clean up after him, and the line of applicants–including the man and his daughter–snaked around the mess for hours. The office’s deputy director remarked, “You can’t keep someone from getting a driver’s license for incontinence.”

In the Last Month

In Newfane, New York, a woman celebrating her son’s homecoming from college sustained first- and second-degree burns on her face after trying to drink a flaming shot glass of 151-proof rum….Archaeologists at Manchester University in England have re-created the beer produced by a 5,000-year-old brewery in the Orkney Islands of Scotland, the key ingredient of which is baked cow dung….Connecticut state representative Kevin Ryan, sentenced to a four-month prison term for driving under the influence, said he does not intend to resign and can easily conduct his legislative business from his cell….And Simon Stertzner, a professor at Stanford University, finalized a deal to buy the Palomino Club strip joint in North Las Vegas, Nevada, saying he plans to funnel all the club’s profits into his research on cardiovascular medicine.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): illustration/Shawn Belschwender.