xxxNews Of The Weirdxxx
Bizarre but true stories about real people collected by syndicated columnist Chuck Shepherd.
The “indecent” CBS drama “Without a Trace” for which the Federal Communications Commission is proposing a $3.3 million fine of the network and affiliates was apparently complained about by only two (at most) actual viewers of the estimated 8.2 million who watched it that December 2004 night, according to FCC records that CBS cited in a June filing to the commission. Those two (and 4,209 complaints from people who apparently only heard about the show) did not start arriving at the FCC until 12 days afterward, which coincidentally was the day that a family watchdog organization began alerting its members about the show. The same CBS program had aired in 2003, with no complaints.
The San Diego firm Allerca Inc. announced in June that it is accepting advance orders (at $5,000 each) for hypoallergenic cats it intends to create by cross-breeding species that lack the noxious bacteria that most cats produce that are so dangerous to asthmatics and others. A competitor, New York’s Transgenic Pets, is after the same result by modifying the actual gene that produces the cat saliva bacteria. (Transgenic is expecting to beat Allerca to market, at a price of around $1,000.)
–Audio software programs whose sole purpose is to re-create the hubbub and screaming of orders on an active stock-exchange floor are coveted by some traders who formerly worked such floors but now buy and sell in quiet offices. Those traders, according to a June Wall Street Journal story, say they miss the energy and wisdom they get from trading-floor chaos.
–In May, Lester Clancy was awarded a U.S. patent for a ropeless jump rope (a handle that electronically duplicates the feel of a jump-rope handle), which he said would be practical for, among other places, mental institutions and prisons where actual rope is banned.
(Send your Weird News to Chuck Shepherd, P.O. Box 18737, Tampa FL 33679 or [email protected] or go to www.NewsoftheWeird.com.) NEWS OF THE WEIRD