News of the Weird
Bizarre but true stories about real people collected by syndicated columnist Chuck Shepherd.
The small, specialty restaurant Guolizhuang, in Beijing, serves mostly dishes made from various animal penises, according to a BBC News dispatch, attracting discerning customers who come for the reputed health benefits. Sheep, horse, ox and seal are good for the circulation, said the restaurant’s staff nutritionist, and donkey improves the skin. Tiger, she said, has no particular value to justify its high price, but snake (“two penises each,” she said) is great for potency.
Alternative-world online games like Second Life allow players to create identities and personalities, to communicate, and to interact commercially in a self-contained universe. Players buy, sell, invest and generate wealth using a virtual monetary system. Currently, Second Life players bump up against real-world taxes only if they earn real-world money from cashing out in-game wealth, but a congressional economist told Reuters that the House and Senate would soon be considering whether also to levy taxes on property and currency left inside the system (“virtual capital gains”). (Second Life’s in-game economy is so robust that it is growing at many times the rate of the U.S. economy.) (The story was filed by a real-life reporter embedded as Reuters’ Second Life “bureau chief.”)
(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