In July, Uttar Pradesh Eunuchs Association in Lucknow, India, demanded that the district magistrate and the senior superintendent of police order cops to begin exposing fake eunuchs by lifting their skirts to verify their status. Charlatans, according to the group, deprive real eunuchs of "legitimate" income (a large part of which derives from eunuchs' entering places of business and private parties, exposing themselves and otherwise being obnoxious, and demanding a fee to leave).


A 1958 Pablo Picasso original, "Atelier de Cannes," was placed on sale recently by the discount chain Costco (on its website), priced to move at the retail-type listing of $129,999.99. Costco began offering art on consignment from dealers last year, but "Atelier" (a crayon drawing authenticated by daughter Maya Picasso) is by far its most expensive piece. According to an August report in the New York Post, the company extends its regular guarantee of full refund if dissatisfied.


Said Glenn A. Reed, 31, upon being sentenced in Waco, Texas, in July to 99 years in prison as a habitual criminal (after rejecting a plea bargain that would have meant a 15-year sentence): "There's things I choose to do, like, if I go in a store and choose to take a Snickers bar, if you catch me, you catch me. If not, I'm going to go home and eat it up and go on about my business, dog." And then there is Lena Driskell, 78, who was indicted for the June jealous-rage fatal shooting of her former boyfriend, age 85, in an Atlanta senior citizens' home and who told police upon her arrest, "I did it, and I'd do it again!"


Grandmother of six Mari Savage and other senior friends in Margate, England, began a campaign this summer to wear hooded sweatshirts and baseball caps, in order to discourage teenagers from dressing that way, which Savage believes encourages gang behavior. Said Savage to the Daily Telegraph, "Once older people like us get hold of (these garments), they lose all their street cred."


Star wide receiver Brandon Jackson might just play in at least half of Lancaster (Texas) High School's football games this season because he doesn't go to court until Oct. 17 on six counts of aggravated robbery from two January armed holdups. Lancaster High's dedication to the presumption of innocence for high school football players is apparently so strong that the only remaining issues, at press time, were 1) whether his relocation from his previous high school will be permitted under the general rules on transfer and 2) whether he will be allowed to remove his ankle monitor during games.


Apparently, forest fires make the jewel beetle (also known as the black fire beetle) frisky, according to Dr. Helmut Schmitz and colleagues at the University of Bonn (Germany). Males and females will fly toward one in a mating frenzy after detecting even the faraway flickering of flames and crackling of burning wood. Schmitz and predecessor William George Evans hypothesized that the fire eliminates the beetle's predators and prevents tree secretion from trapping the beetle larvae, according to a March report by BBC News.


In June, a judge in Edinburgh, Texas, accepted a plea bargain in which Robert W. Thompson, 46, who had pleaded no contest to aggravated sexual assault of a 7-year-old girl, was sentenced to no jail time but 320 hours of community service, to be specifically spent knitting afghans. (The judge was sympathetic to Thompson's frail heart condition.)


Jeremy Suggs, 21, was arrested in Las Vegas in August and charged with robbing a Wells Fargo bank, done in by the familiar lapse of having accidentally left behind his wallet and a name-imprinted deposit slip. Also, according to police, he had fired two shots in the bank out of frustration at noncompliance with his demands – one narrowly missed his own head – and had to re-count down a threat to shoot ("5, 4, 3, 2, 1") when no one gave him money the first time. His alleged partner and getaway driver, known as "Jap," had supposedly talked him into the crime by assuring him that there were no surveillance cameras, but of course there were.


Werner D. Anderson was arrested on several traffic violations in Missoula County, Mont., in June after a two-county car chase with deputies that ended with Anderson creeping along at 20 mph until he stopped. Deputies say that when Anderson finally got out of his van, a syringe fell to the ground, and Anderson said he had been driving so slowly at the end because he needed to shoot up with cocaine one last time before he got arrested.


In August, the 14-year-old daughter of Alberta Rose of Brookfield, Wis., was found safe in Baytown, Texas, after being allegedly lured there over the Internet by a 37-year-old man. Rose had reported the girl missing 12 days earlier, but had decided, since she and her boyfriend had nonrefundable airline tickets, to head out on vacation (to Lake Tahoe). She left authorities her cell phone number in case the girl turned up.

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