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News Quirks 

Published November 23, 2011 at 8:58 a.m.

Curses, Foiled Again

When a man entered a bank in New Castle, Del., and handed a teller a hold-up note, she told him she couldn’t make out what it said and asked him to rewrite it. Instead, he left empty-handed. Police spotted a man fitting the suspect’s description and arrested Thomas J. Love, 40. (Philadelphia’s WPVI-TV)

When eHarmony Fails

Authorities accused Robbie Suhr, 48, of disguising himself by wearing dark clothes and a mask, then attacking a 26-year-old exchange student living with Suhr, his wife and their two children in Pleasant Prairie, Wis. Police said Suhr told them he wanted to be in a relationship with the woman and that he “intended to tie her up while masked, leave the area, and then return as himself to rescue her.” The woman had stepped outside for a smoke when the masked man appeared. “She fought back, and the suspect eventually gave up the attack and fled from the garage,” police Sgt. Peter Jung said. (Milwaukee’s WTMJ-TV)

Lasting Impression

Detailed photos of the moon’s surface, taken by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter from an altitude of 13 to 15 miles, revealed that Apollo astronauts who visited the moon from 1969 to 1972 left behind buggy ruts in the surface and trash that included discarded backpacks, the bottom parts of three lunar landers, packing material and an insulation blanket. Arizona State University geology professor Mark Robinson, the orbiter’s chief scientist, predicted it would take 10 million to 100 million years for dust to cover signs of the astronauts’ landings. (Associated Press)

Extreme Makeovers

A Tokyo dental clinic began offering a procedure aimed at giving men and women an “imperfect” look to make them more attractive to the opposite sex. The theory behind Dental Salon Plaisir’s Tsuke-yaeba — Stick-on Crooked Teeth — is that classic good looks intimidate suitors, whereas ordinary-looking people are more approachable. Tsuke-yaeba, which involves applying crooked false teeth over real teeth with glue, costs upwards of $390. (CNN)

California inventor Gregg Homer announced the development of a 20-second procedure that turns brown eyes blue by using a computer-guided laser to break down the brown pigment. “People like the depth of a light eye,” he said, citing a poll conducted by his Stroma Medical firm that found 17.5 percent would have the procedure, which is irreversible and costs $5000. (New York’s Daily News)

Suspicions Confirmed

Missing work to stay at home waiting for deliveries and service calls is costing American workers $37.7 billion this year, according to a survey by IBOPE-Zogby. Fifty-eight percent of respondents said they spent more than four hours waiting. More than a quarter said they lost wages from waiting at home for appointments, and half used a sick day or vacation day. Most — 57 percent — said they spent the most time waiting for the cable guy. (CNN)

Reckless Driving

Sheriff’s deputies responding to a call of a couple fighting in Broward County, Fla., couldn’t find anyone but then heard “cries for help” coming from the darkness. They noticed a woman struggling to stay above water in a lake. After rescuing her, they learned her husband had been hitting her while she was driving, causing her to lose control of the car and veer into the lake. The husband, Sandro Michel, 27, drowned. (Broward-Palm Beach New Times)

Second-Amendment Follies

When Stephen M. Comrie, 20, and a friend hid in the woods and made animal noises intending to frighten a group of 10 to 20 people partying around a bonfire in Manlius, N.Y., Jeremy J. Messina, 21, responded by firing his shotgun three or four times. Police Sgt. Tina Stanton reported that Comrie suffered wounds in the face, arm, chest and thigh. (Syracuse’s Post-Standard)

Them That Has, Gets

New Jersey’s Crestek, which makes ultrasonic cleaning equipment, became the first company in America to be fined for stating in a help-wanted ad for a service manager that applicants “must be currently employed.” Crestek chief executive J. Michael Goodson said he’s contesting the $1000 fine, explaining he wanted to hire someone “at the top of their game” and that if he hired someone not currently working, “my concern would be that their last job was in a bakery or pumping gas.” (Newark’s Star-Ledger)

Thrust and Parry

A 37-year-old man kicked in the door of a motel room in Wichita, Kan., and told the 57-year-old man inside that his actions toward a woman who wasn’t present “were unacceptable.” The intruder refused to leave and threatened the older man with a sword with a 2-foot-long blade. The victim countered by grabbing two steak knives to defend himself. The two men fought in the room and then in the motel parking lot. Police Lt. Doug Nolte said that when officers arrived, the older man had pinned his attacker against a wall. (Wichita Eagle)

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About The Author

Roland Sweet

Roland Sweet was the author of a syndicated column called "News Quirks," which appeared weekly in Seven Days.


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