News of the Weird: Week of September 7, 2023


Bright Idea

Officials in New Delhi, India, are preparing for the G20 summit next week, and no detail has been left unaddressed, Reuters reported. For example: Rhesus monkeys are a menace on many of the city’s streets, often attacking pedestrians. The monkeys cannot be harmed or removed by law, so the government has installed life-size cutouts of langurs — bigger primates with black faces — around the city to scare the monkeys away. The New Delhi Municipal Council has also employed “30 to 40” people who mock the langurs’ sounds so that the monkeys will believe they are real. “We … are already seeing a positive impact,” said Satish Upadhyay, the vice-chairman of the NDMC.

It’s Come to This

New Yorkers have become accustomed (some grudgingly) to the ubiquitous odor of cannabis on city streets and in parks, the Associated Press reported. In fact, as spectator Diane Patrizio of Southampton, New York, stood in line at Court 17 at the U.S. Open, she remarked, “It’s everywhere. But what are you going to do?” Court 17, which is situated on the periphery of the Flushing Meadows complex, lies right next to Corona Park, and on Aug. 29, the court “definitely (smelled) like Snoop Dogg’s living room,” said player Alexander Zverev. “The whole court smells like weed.” In fact, eighth-seeded Maria Sakkari complained to the chair umpire. However, the USTA found no evidence that anyone inside the facility was smoking, and Sakkari said the odor didn’t affect her loss to Rebeka Masarova. “I mean, it’s something we cannot control because we’re in an open space,” Sakkari said.

email newsletter iconStay on top of the news of the day

Subscribe to our free, daily e-newsletter to get Milwaukee’s latest local news, restaurants, music, arts and entertainment and events delivered right to your inbox every weekday, plus a bonus Week in Review email on Saturdays.

News That Sounds Like a Joke

Barbara Haverly, 62, of Mount Dora, Florida, was running a routine errand this summer when things suddenly got out of hand, The Washington Post reported on Aug. 23. Haverly had stopped at the city library to return a book, but the line was rather long, so she dropped it into a drop box as she’d done many times before. But as she pulled out her hand, she felt a sharp pain in her left middle finger. The top of the finger, starting just below her fingernail, had been torn off. “I was in shock,” she said. Library staff called 911, and one employee got into the book box to retrieve the top of her finger. Doctors performed surgery but were unable to reattach the fingertip. Haverly is still dealing with the aftermath of the incident; she said she is depressed and can no longer do yoga or play the ukulele. Meanwhile, the library has placed a sign over the box that reads, “Please do not place your hand inside this book drop.”


Two employees of television outlet Univision Chicago who were filming a piece about armed robberies in the Windy City were robbed at gunpoint around 5 a.m. on Aug. 28, The Washington Post reported. The reporter and photographer were in the Wicker Park neighborhood when an SUV and a sedan pulled up and three suspects “wearing ski masks and displaying firearms” jumped out. They took the photography equipment and personal items, returned to their cars and fled. The suspects are still at large; no injuries were reported.

Unmanaged Expectations

Officials at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point hyped an event scheduled for Aug. 28, tweeting the night before and livestreaming the festivities a la Geraldo Rivera: the opening of a time capsule from the late 1820s. The Washington Post reported that the box was installed at the base of a monument to a Polish military engineer who aided the U.S. during the Revolutionary War. But when archaeologist Paul Hudson lifted the lid, his high hopes flew away like dust in the wind. “The box didn’t quite meet expectations,” he said. Hudson found … silt. However, upon further examination, Hudson uncovered a small and puzzling treasure: six silver American coins dated between 1795 and 1828 and one Erie Canal commemorative medal. “When I first found these, I thought … it would have been great to have found these on stage,” he said. Hudson said he would analyze the remaining sediment to find out whether other items inside had been destroyed by moisture.

Build the Wall!

No, not that wall. In Norway’s Arctic region, workers are rebuilding a reindeer fence along the country’s border with Russia because the animals keep wandering over the line to find better pastures for grazing. The barrier is 93 miles long; only about 4 miles require repair, the Associated Press reported. But the work is challenging because workers cannot step into Russian territory lest they be charged with illegal entry. Russia has charged Norway huge fines for the days the reindeer grazed in a natural reserve. The work is expected to be completed by Oct. 1.

Friends of the Shepherd

Help support Milwaukee’s locally owned free weekly magazine.


News You Can Use

Back off that accelerator if you’re driving through Coffee City, Texas, about three hours north of Houston. Why? The town, with about 250 residents, has 50 full- and part-time police officers, KHOU-TV reported on Aug. 30. The town’s budget reveals that it collected more than $1 million in court fines in 2022, which were the result of more than 5,100 citations the officers wrote. And there’s a tantalizing twist: Most of Coffee City’s officers had been suspended, demoted, terminated or discharged from previous law enforcement jobs, for reasons including excessive force, public drunkenness and association with known criminals. “I’ve never seen anything like that in my professional career, and I’ve seen a lot,” said Greg Fremin, a retired Houston Police Department captain. But Coffee City’s police chief, JohnJay Portillo, disagrees: “There’s more to just what’s on paper,” he said. “I try to look at the good in everybody and I believe everybody deserves an opportunity.” Even so, the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement has an open investigation into the tiny community’s big law presence.

The Passing Parade

Lee Meyer of Neligh, Nebraska, altered his Ford sedan a few years back, cutting out half the roof and the passenger-side door and adding a farm gate, so that he could drive his Watusi bull in the Kolach Days Parade in Verdigre. (A Watusi bull, for you non-Nebraskans, has large, long horns, similar to a Texas Longhorn.) The bull, Howdy Doody, hitched another ride with Meyer on Aug. 30 on U.S. 275, but the Norfolk police weren’t having it, People reported: “The officer performed a traffic stop and addressed some traffic violations that were occurring with that particular situation,” Capt. Chad Reiman said. “I don’t know why he was doing it that day. I can honestly say that I haven’t seen anything like that before.” Meyer was asked to leave the city and return home with Howdy Doody.

Don’t Mind Them

  • In Fairfax County, Virginia, on Aug. 22, a man entered a 7-Eleven store and displayed a knife, which was the least interesting part of the robbery, Fox5DC-TV reported. The man, who was described as Hispanic, was wearing a black cowboy hat upon which perched two parrots. Another parrot was riding on the man’s shoulder. The suspect escaped in a blue SUV with an undisclosed amount of money, police said.
  • And in northern England, an unnamed driver was issued a traffic offense report by police after he was observed motoring along the M62 with an African gray parrot on his shoulder, The Guardian reported on Aug. 30. “Animals should be in suitable carriers/restraints so that they don’t interfere with your ability to drive safely,” police posted on X.

Send your weird news items with subject line WEIRD NEWS to

News of the Weird is now a podcast on all major platforms! Visit to find out more.


1130 Walnut, Kansas City MO 64106; 800-255-6734

Source link

Tags: No tags

Comments are closed.