Big screen tv

A 2003 British documentary, "Fat Girls and Feeders," debuting on Australian TV in April 2004, profiled an Arizona couple, "Gina" (once one of the world's largest women) and her husband, "Mark" (who desires her to be ever larger). Because Gina is apparently comfortable with her role, Mark is merely an "enabler" in the "fat administration" subculture, but more dominant men are called "feeders," who may even "grow" their partners by pouring liquid fat down their throats. Gina once weighed 825 pounds (with a 92-inch waist), but has settled down at around 400 pounds. The filmmaker's point is said to be that objectifying fat women is only somewhat more offensive than objectifying thin ones.

Geezer wars

In March, a 62-year-old man was ejected from the Spring Haven Retirement Community in Winter Haven, Fla., after he punched one 86-year-old resident and bit another (aged 78) in a brawl over his apparent habit of foraging at the communal salad bar for his favorite kind of lettuce. His 80-year-old mother, also a resident, conceded that "it did appear that he was playing with the food." And in February in Tamarac, Fla., the family of a 74-year-old man who died in 2002 after being sucker-punched by a 69-year-old man in a theater-line fight filed a lawsuit against the movie house for not providing security, claiming there had been several other theater-line altercations between seniors.


Todd Lorin Nelson, a 13-year employee of the Miami-Dade county clerk's office, was summoned for jury duty in April 2003, reported to the courtroom and was quickly dismissed. However, according to police, he repeatedly called his boss over the next few months to say that he had been selected as a juror for a big case but couldn't talk about it (all the while drawing his $35,000 government salary), and it was not until October that the boss finally investigated, resulting in Nelson's arrest.

sincerely, i.p. daily

From a February "Ask Dr. (Peter) Gott" column in the Herald News of suburban Chicago: Reader: "(M)y grandson ... told me that his fifth-grade teacher (a female) instructed the class that hand-washing (following urination in a public restroom) is unnecessary; urine is sterile." Dr. Gott: "Bless your grandson's teacher. ... As a general rule, the urogenital area is cleaner than most other body parts are, and it need not be washed nor should hands be washed after urinating. ... You and I, reader, are the products of our upbringing. It's time to make a change."

Bloody stupid

Troy D. Nunes, 37, became the latest ordinary burglar to die at his crime scene. He broke into a Hollywood Video store in Quincy, Mass., in March by tossing a brick through a window, but a shard of glass remained protruding, and as Nunes was leaving, he accidentally slashed his right femoral artery and died of blood loss just down the street. However, another clumsy burglar is still alive (and was arrested in Columbus, Ohio, in March), despite apparently habitually cutting himself at crime scenes. Columbus police said they had found what they believe is his DNA in seven different burglarized stores in Columbus and Cleveland.

have a nice trip

In December, Raymond Rodriguez, 25, of San Antonio, Texas, was found not guilty in the murder of a 77-year-old drinking buddy after he testified to having, at the crime scene, hallucinations of bologna and cheese dancing around in the refrigerator and, in the freezer, a green man who told Rodriguez, "Catch me if you can." And Patrick Hutchinson was sent for a mental exam in February after police in Lexington, Ky., accused him of murdering his wife. Hutchinson explained that she had been taken over by aliens and that he, as one of only 735 "true humans" left in Lexington, had to stop her, using a weapon supplied by a cobra that was speaking on behalf of God.

that's why I love the South!

In March, the commissioners of Rhea County, Tenn., site of the 1925 Scopes "evolution" trial, voted 8-0 to ask the state to help them keep gays and lesbians out of the county, but rescinded the vote two days later amidst heavy criticism. Also in March, the Georgia House of Representatives voted 160-0 to prohibit piercing of female genitals, even of adult women eager for the procedure. (One sponsor, Rep. Bill Heath, when told that some women seek such adornment, was incredulous: "What? I've never seen such a thing.")

Chew on this

Toronto, Ontario, artist Jason Kronewald, 29, creates claylike portraits of celebrities, but using hundreds of pieces of used chewing gum instead of clay, according to a March profile by Reuters news service. He said he doesn't chew, himself, but buys gum and asks his friends to chew it. "I'm not into picking it off seats in the theater. I like the gum to be mine." His "Gum Blondes" series includes Britney Spears and Pamela Anderson.

Giving it one last shake

In November, after a bout of heavy drinking, a landscape worker in Croesgoch, Wales, riding home with his buddies, fell to his death while trying to urinate out of the open door of their car at about 25 mph. And in March, a 46-year-old Columbia, Calif., man became the most recent to fall to his death on the side of a highway after stopping his car in the dark and searching for a place to urinate (but falling 300 feet off a cliff).

hate your friends

A 73-year-old retired electronics specialist sat for a long interview in December in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, patiently explaining that the $300,000 nest egg he had just lost on a familiar Nigerian scam was really the fault of "corrupt governments" and not the dishonesty of his Nigerian "friends" who had no choice but to ask him to pay ever-escalating investment amounts. The man repeatedly insisted that his "friends" couldn't possibly be scammers, but toward the end of the two-hour interview, finally remembered that they "never did really explain how they got my name."

didn't see that one coming

In March, a Chicago attorney was permitted to withdraw from representing a 75-year-old alleged serial bad-check writer after he sheepishly admitted that he had taken a check from her for his retainer, but that it had bounced.

In Santa Fe, N.M., in March, after police recovered $46,000 worth of jewelry near an abandoned safe in a ravine, they concluded that burglars had stolen the 180-pound safe from a nearby home, taken it down the road and tried mightily to break it open, but failed, finally just pushing it down the ravine, at which point (unknown to them, because they had left) it finally burst open.


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