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Wed, 28 Sep 2016
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Bizarro Earth

Nearly 3,500 Chinese Named 'Olympics'

The upcoming Beijing Olympics is more than just a point of pride for China - it's such an important part of the national consciousness that nearly 3,500 children have been named for the event, a newspaper reported Sunday.

Most of the 3,491 people with the name "Aoyun," meaning Olympics, were born around the year 2000, as Beijing was bidding to host the 2008 Summer Games, the Beijing Daily reported, citing information from China's national identity card database.

The vast majority of people named Aoyun are male, the newspaper said. Only six live in Beijing. The report didn't say where the others live.

Better Earth

Highest Bidder Gets to Name a Butterfly

Tucson - Researchers who helped discover a new species of Mexican butterfly are offering to sell the naming rights to raise money to fund more research.

Co-discoverer Andrew Warren is hoping to raise at least $50,000 by auctioning off the rights to name the 4-inch "owl eye'' butterfly, which lives in Sonora, a Mexican state bordering Arizona.

©Priscilla Broodkin
This male Opsiphanes butterfly was photographed Sept. 2, 2000, in Sonora, Mexico.


Grandmother celebrates 100th birthday by becoming world's oldest paraglider

British grandmother Peggy McAlpine celebrated her 100th birthday by becoming the world's oldest paraglider.

Thrill seeker: Peggy Alpine celebrated her 100th birthday by becoming the oldest woman to paraglide


Wiccan lottery winner plans to open witch school

An American lottery winner who follows the Wiccan religion has decided to use part of his $49million winnings to set up his very own school of witchcraft and wizardry.

Elwood 'Bunky' Bartlett, an accountant from Nottingham in Maryland and high priest of Wicca, attributed his win earlier this month to Wicca, and specifically to the Mystickal Voyage new age shop.

Comment: Witch numbers?


He's not undead, just unsober...

Passengers on a German train mistook a Halloween reveler dressed up as a gore-covered zombie for a murder victim and called the police.

©REUTERS/Seth Wenig
Members of the Zombie Army dance to Michael Jackson's "Thriller" at the 32nd Annual Village Halloween Parade in New York October 31, 2005.


Australia: Nightclub 'shufflers' fight back

A plan to ban a popular dance move from nightclubs has been branded as ridiculous by club managers and party goers.

The high-octane steps of the "Melbourne shuffle" came under fire recently when Sydney promoter Tim Sabre declared war on the move, saying young, drunk shufflers were endangering fellow clubbers.

Comment: Indeed, fun is a very dangerous thing to those in a position of power - for some strange reason.

We don't mean to rein on anyone's parade but there is no such thing as freedom of speech in Australia. The constitution does not guarantee such a thing in Oz. In fact, even the countries that do pretend to have it, also tend to stifle it all cost.


Teenager escapes prison in suitcase

A 19-year-old German woman has escaped from prison by hiding in a friend's suitcase.

The fugitive hid inside the large case when her 17-year-old fellow inmate was released from the youth prison in northwest Germany on Friday, Lower Saxony ministry spokesman Dennis Weilmann said on Monday.


Chasing leprechauns: Hypnosis 'victim' still traumatised

A man who allegedly ran from a theatre in pursuit of leprechauns after being hypnotised on stage claims he is still feeling the effects of the stunt.

Comment: This unhealthy preoccupation with entertainment hypnotism had to end in tears - we just didn't expect leprechauns to get involved...


Police catch burglar with his pants down

WEST BEND, Wis. - The suspect in a weekend burglary was easy to identify: He had left his pants behind at the scene. The man squirmed out of his pants and shoes while scuffling with the homeowner, police said. Clad in only a hooded sweat shirt and red boxer shorts, he fled from the house on the city's northwest side.

Police later found him hiding in tall grass in a wooded area. They are seeking charges of disorderly conduct, burglary and possession of stolen property.


More Interest in Mailboxes Than Meteors

NEW YORK - Two of the world's most famous meteorites failed to attract buyers at an auction Sunday, while an ordinary metal mailbox zapped by a falling space rock in 1984 was sold for the unearthly price of nearly $83,000.

A 30-pound chunk of the Willamette Meteorite, which was found in Oregon in 1902 and has been steeped in ownership controversies for more than a century, was offered by Bonhams auction house at an estimated value of $1.3 million but was withdrawn from sale after bidding ended at $300,000.