ANNALS OF HYGIENE
The Times of India reports that Soni Devi, 20, of Vaishali district, petitioned the state women’s commission on Jan. 9 for divorce from her husband of two years, Manish Ram, 23, complaining, “My husband stinks as he won’t shave and bathe for nearly 10 days at a stretch. Moreover, he doesn’t brush his teeth. He also doesn’t have manners and follow etiquette… Kindly get me rid of this man; he has ruined my life.” Commission member Pratima Sinha told the Times, “I was taken aback by her silly reasons,” but nonetheless, the commission will give the husband “two months’ time to mend his ways. If his behavior is not found satisfactory even after that, we will … refer the matter to the family court for separation.” Manish reportedly promised to mend his ways.
Sauntore Thomas, 44, of Detroit, presented three checks at his bank on Jan. 21 that he had received as settlement in a race discrimination lawsuit against his former employer, according to the Detroit Free Press. Instead of accepting the checks, TCF Bank in Livonia, where Thomas was an established customer, summoned police and initiated a fraud investigation. Thomas’ attorney, Deborah Gordon, told the Free Press, “Obviously, assumptions were made the minute he walked in based on his race.” Thomas finally closed his existing accounts, left the bank and deposited the checks at a different bank without any trouble. The next day, Thomas filed a lawsuit against TCF Bank alleging race discrimination and asking for unspecified damages and an apology from the company.
If you’d like to get a special gift for an ex this Valentine’s Day, Centre Wildlife Care in Port Matilda, Pennsylvania, has just the thing. In exchange for a donation to a fund for restoring local bat populations, the rescue organization will name a mealworm after your ex, and Betsy the large brown bat will eat it. Donate more than $45, and you’ll receive a personalized video of Betsy devouring the treat. “Essentially, people will be naming the mealworms after someone they don’t like,” executive director Robyn Graboski told WTAJ, “and we will feed them to the bat.”
A SURE ‘YES’
If you have lifetime commitment on your mind this Valentine’s Day, Domino’s Australia wants to help out. The pizza chain announced a contest on Feb. 3 in which the winner will receive a diamond-encrusted engagement ring in the shape of a pizza slice worth $9,000, Fox News reported. Fans can enter with a 30-second video detailing “how you will involve pizza in your proposal,” according to the company. Good luck!
LIFE IMITATES A TV DRAMA
Two chemistry professors at Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, were formally charged on Feb. 3 with manufacturing methamphetamines and possession, KTHV reported. Terry David Bateman, 45, and Bradley Allen Rowland, 40, both associate professors, were arrested on Nov. 15 and had been on administrative leave since Oct. 11, after the science center on campus was closed because of a chemical odor. It reopened on Oct. 29 after testing, but in the meantime, according to court documents, faculty members reported to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office the two were acting in a way that indicated “these persons were involved in some type of illegal activity.” The suspects had also lost weight and were “extremely guarded” about who was in their laboratories and when. (Should have sprung for the RV.)
In the fall of 2018, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement launched Fortify Florida, an app intended for students to anonymously report suspicious activity. Since then, more than 6,000 tips have been received statewide, but school officials are feeling mostly frustration, reports WFTS in Tampa. Indian River County Superintendent Dr. David Moore said students will “talk about the flavor of the food in the cafeteria.” Pasco Superintendent Kurt Browning said, “The number of kids entering bogus tips is consuming a great deal of resources… There’s a coyote in my front yard,” was one example. Indian River Country authorities spent hours investigating a report of a student planning to shoot up a high school, only to find out it was a revenge report for a recent breakup. Florida lawmakers are considering a bill to allow authorities to track tipsters’ IP addresses and prosecute those who submit false information.
Ottawa, Ontario, businessman Bruce McConville, 55, who ran for mayor in the last election with a tough-on-crime platform, has gone to great lengths to avoid paying his ex-wife the spousal and child support he was ordered by the court to provide. The Ottawa Citizen reports McConville has long defied several court orders involving his finances, finally telling Superior Court Justice Kevin Phillips he withdrew over $1 million (Canadian) from six bank accounts, but he no longer had the cash. “I burnt it,” he told the incredulous judge, who replied, “I don’t believe you, I don’t trust you, I don’t think you’re honest,” and on Jan. 28 sentenced McConville to 30 days in jail, after which he’ll face penalties of $2,000 for each day he fails to provide a full account of his finances, including where the $1 million-plus in cash is. The fines will be paid directly to his ex-wife. “You cannot thumb your nose at the court as you have done,” Phillips warned.
David Baird of Yukon, Oklahoma, took up arms against his neighbor, John Stafford, after Stafford went on a bizarrely violent rant on Feb. 5, KFOR reported. Stafford assaulted the neighborhood for 12 hours, throwing feces into the Bairds’ yard and trying to break down a fence using a Roomba vacuum cleaner. As he and his family took shelter in their home, Baird warned Stafford: “If you break through this fence, I will have to shoot you.” Finally the bomb squad and SWAT team were called in, and Stafford barricaded himself inside his home, making six calls to 911 during the ordeal. “I am going to run you guys into the f-ing ground,” he said during one. “OK, have a nice night,” the dispatcher replied. Eventually officers released cans of pepper spray to budge Stafford from his house. He was charged with planning an act of violence.