xxxNews Of The Weirdxxx
Bizarre but true stories about real people collected by syndicated columnist Chuck Shepherd.
“I don’t think I’ve done more than two days’ work in three years,” said the New York Liquor Authority’s director of wholesale services, Patricia Freund, explaining to the New York Post in December that she is another example of how bureaucracies deal with “problem” workers who are hard to fire. Freund was exiled to an office with no work and no responsibilities (though continuing to draw her $82,000 salary), which she said was in retaliation for raising a stink about Gov. George Pataki’s Christian prayer breakfasts and Jesus-laden mementoes, which she said was discriminatory toward Jewish employees, such as her.
And a 21-year-old student at the University of Nebraska Lincoln was killed when, not belted in, he was ejected from the back seat of an SUV in a crash; the student was prominent for his libertarian political views, including a defiant stand in the student newspaper against mandatory seatbelt laws. (He described himself as one of “a die-hard group of non-wearers out there who simply do not wish to buckle up.”)
In January, sanitation workers in Nairobi, Kenya, finally, after 10 years of complaints, cleaned up the Wakulima Market (the country’s largest fruit and vegetable facility), dislodging an estimated 750 tons of garbage, 38 tons of human waste, and about 6,000 rats.
Also in January, Cleveland paralegal Austin Aitken filed a lawsuit against the TV show “Fear Factor” for $2.5 million, claiming that the episode in which contestants ate dead rats made him ill, causing him to vomit, become dizzy, and hit his head as he ran from the room in disgust.
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Copyright © 2001 by Chuck Shepherd
NEWS OF THE WEIRD