xxxNews Of The Weirdxxx
Bizarre but true stories about real people collected by syndicated columnist Chuck Shepherd.
While the Statue of Liberty remains shuttered for lack of $5 million in post-Sept. 11 upgrades, Congress in January mandated $10.7 billion in “earmarked” projects (also known as home-state “pork”), including: $50 million for an indoor rain forest in Iowa, $50 million to make sure a Florida beach resort bridge remains toll-free, $450,000 to decipher the gene structure of rainbow trout, $225,000 to repair a public swimming pool whose drain U.S. Rep. Jim Gibbons of Nevada clogged with tadpoles when he was a kid, $200,000 to introduce golf to youngsters, $90,000 for the Cowgirl Hall of Fame, and, ironically, $500,000 for a University of Akron program that analyzes how Congress makes difficult budget decisions.
Officers ticketed a 19-year-old driver for running into an ambulance, charging that the man was distracted by reading a speeding ticket he had just received (South Brunswick, N.J.).
“It Must Be a Sign” (all new):
Pilgrims recently flocked to the following places:
(1) Brancaleone, Italy, to see a life-sized bronze statue of the recently sainted Padre Pio supposedly weeping blood (December);
(2) Passaic, N.J., to see a 2-foot-high tree stump whose shape resembles the Virgin Mary (October);
(3) Bridgeport, Conn., to see a stain-like image on the ceiling of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church resembling the Virgin Mary holding baby Jesus (December);
(4) Bethlehem, to see a baby born with a birthmark across his cheek resembling the Arabic letters of the name of his uncle, a Hamas militant killed by Israeli soldiers (December).
Send your Weird News to Chuck Shepherd, P.O. Box 18737, Tampa, Fla. 33679 or Weird@compuserve.com
Copyright © 2001 by Chuck Shepherd
NEWS OF THE WEIRD