Odds and Ends
By Devin D. O'Leary
SEPTEMBER 20, 1999:
Dateline: Honduras -- Medical professors at the Honduras National Autonomous University in Tegucigalpa have gone on strike demanding more dead bodies. The school's anatomy instructors have laid down their scalpels and are demanding administrators supply them with more cadavers from hospitals and morgues for their classes. The university's anatomy department used to receive some 30 cadavers each semester. Now the department is lucky to squeak by with a single stiff each semester. Honduran road improvement projects that have made it easier for poor people in remote areas to pick up and take home bodies of family members who died in hospitals in the larger cities have contributed to the country's corpse deficit. Victor Ramos, a medical professor at the university, admitted to the Reuters news agency, "It would be really hard for the dean of the medical school to satisfy this need on his own, unless he goes out on the street with a pistol in his hand."
Dateline: New Zealand -- A chicken processing plant in Auckland is now fully apprised of President Clinton's upcoming visit to New Zealand, thanks to a wave of top secret faxes which have bombarded the poultry plant's offices. According to the New Zealand Herald, dozens of stray faxes from U.S. security officers have accidentally been sent to a fax machine at the chicken plant regarding Clinton's trip to a summit of Asia-Pacific leaders on Sept. 12 and 13. One fax detailed the installation of White House communications equipment in the Auckland airport control tower in anticipation of Air Force One. Another fax contained the name, code name and security number of a key military officer. Plant owner Saji Philips asked the U.S. support office for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit to stop the sensitive faxes, but they have yet to cease. U.S. Embassy officials are reportedly "looking into the situation."
Dateline: Stockholm -- A Swedish man accused of theft is now suing police for injuries he suffered during an escape attempt. Jimmy Haakansson, 39, claims that the two police officers assigned to guard him were negligent in their duty when they allowed him to consult alone with his attorney at the Stockholm courthouse. Haakansson, who stands accused of receiving stolen property, promptly leaped out the third-story window, breaking his foot and injuring his back. He is suing the state for $2,450 in damages.
Dateline: Brazil -- Two kidnappers in São Paulo, Brazil, abducted Palmeiras soccer star Paulo Nunes -- but quickly freed the athlete after learning his identity. Nunes had stopped his expensive sports utility vehicle in an upscale São Paulo neighborhood to answer a cell phone call, and soon found himself on the business end of a handgun. The two unidentified kidnappers forced Nunes onto a nearby freeway. As it turned out, the kidnappers were major fans of Nunes' Brazilian soccer club and, after learning his identity, quickly released their captive by the side of the road. The armed robbers retained Nunes' car, watch, sunglasses and 1,000 reais ($500) as souvenirs of their encounter.
Dateline: Montana -- Residents of tiny Saco, Mont., made a meaty attempt to knock residents of tiny Seymour, Wis., out of the Guinness Book of World Records last Sunday by building the world's biggest hamburger. The residents of Saco used 6,040 pounds of hamburger meat -- nearly 17 whole cows -- to make their colossal Whopper. It took an hour and 40 minutes to fry the monster patty which was served up to 4,000 people who pulled off U.S. Highway 2 at Sleeping Buffalo Resort. If it is recognized by Guinness, Saco's Ultra Big Mac will best Seymour's burger by more than 500 pounds. Organizers plan to use the leftovers to make biscuits and gravy for breakfast and sloppy joes for dinner.