Weekly Wire
Weekly Alibi Odds & Ends

By Devin D. O'Leary

APRIL 5, 1999: 

Dateline: Cambodia--Three Cambodians were busy getting bombed at a local restaurant when one of them decided to up the ante with a land mine. A militiaman, a tax collector and another civilian were drinking at a restaurant in the southeastern province of Svay Rieng last weekend when the militiaman pulled out a 25-year-old landmine and placed it under the table. According to surviving witnesses, the tippling trio began kicking the landmine back and forth. Minutes later, the landmine exploded, killing all three men instantly. After decades of armed conflict, Cambodia remains littered with abandoned tank mines and unexploded ordnance. Despite government warnings against tampering with the deadly devices, such accidents are apparently common.

Dateline: Indiana--What better way to honor the patron saint of Ireland than by getting drunk and blowing away a public toilet? An inebriated Raymond A. Cruise, 49, was arrested last week on St. Patrick's Day after he pulled out his .40 caliber semi-automatic Baretta and shot a toilet bowl to kingdom come in a Schererville, Ind., restaurant. Cruise told police that the toilet didn't flush fast enough for him, so he "fired it up." The besotted toilet killer was charged with criminal recklessness with a handgun and resisting law enforcement.

Dateline: Israel--Holy Landers take note: Engaging in intercourse while operating a motor vehicle is both unsafe sex and unsafe driving. Police in Israel were forced to issue a reckless driving ticket to a driver last week for fornicating with a hitchhiking woman while behind the wheel of his vehicle. "I saw a naked girl sitting on the driver, and they were having sex," a prison guard, who was driving along Israel's coastal highway, told Jerusalem's Maariv newspaper. The concerned guard signaled the passengers in the Love Bug to pull over beside the road and called traffic police. Police arrived several minutes later to find the couple still naked. According to the police, the embarrassed driver admitted, "While driving I became attracted to her. She was a pretty girl, and I forgot myself."

Dateline: California--Under a new plan awaiting approval by San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, Bay Area panhandlers could soon accept donations by credit card. Karen Gatter, who proposed the idea, envisions beggars equipped with an ATM-style machine that would accept VISA, American Express and other forms of bank plastic. Gatter has dubbed her idea "the Benevolending Box Program." Paul Boden of the Coalition on Homelessness told the San Francisco Examiner, "I think there's a couple of levels where it's just bizarre."

Dateline: Texas--People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has asked an Amarillo advertising agency to remove their controversial billboard claiming "Jesus was a vegetarian" from a major Texas highway. It seems that Texans, who take both Jesus and a T-bone quite seriously, were not amused by the anti-meat campaign. The Amarillo Globe-News reported that it has been deluged by angry calls and letters about what one of the newspaper's columnists called "PETA's efforts to convert all us West Texas chicken fried steak-lovin' carnivores into carrot-crunchin' melon thumpers."

Dateline: Florida--The Bonaventure Towers Health Club in Weston, Fla., recently banned the use of soap in its facilities. Club members are forbidden to lather up with bar soap, body wash, shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream or any other cleansing agent. Seems that the club has been sued so many times by people who have slipped and fallen on their own Zest that the owners were forced to enact the no soap policy several weeks ago. Owners of the Bonaventure Towers, located in a upscale community near Fort Lauderdale, refuse to say how many times they have been sued or how much money they have paid out since opening in 1984, but do admit that there have been "quite a few" lawsuits.

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