THE ENTREPRENEURIAL SPIRIT!
“[Our critics] are absolutely right. We are professional liars,” said Everett Davis, founder of the Internet-based Reference Store, which supplies pumped-up, but false, resumes for job-seekers having trouble landing work. Davis and associates are, he told Houston’s KRIV-TV in November, ex-investigators schooled in deception and therefore good at fooling human resources personnel who follow up on the bogus work claims. Davis admitted he would even disguise a customer’s past criminal record–but not if the job is in public safety, health care or schools.
The British Medical Journal reported in December that until recently a 76-year-old woman had not been bothered by the felt-tip pen she accidentally swallowed 25 years ago. It was removed without complication, and, though the plastic was flaky, the pen still had an ink supply and was “usable.” And twice during 2011, babies with two heads were born in Brazil. Though the first, in Paraiba state, died hours after birth, the 9.9-pound “Emanoel” and “Jesus,” born in Para state in December, are apparently otherwise healthy. The baby has two heads and two spines but shares one heart, liver, pelvis and pair of lungs.
MEDICAL MARVELS (CANINE EDITION)
The Dogs Trust in Kenilworth, England, was soliciting potential homes in December for “Bentley,” a Border Collie whose monophobia might make it what the Daily Mail calls the “most cowardly” dog in the country. While frisky around people, Bentley immediately goes into a frightened sulk when left alone, cowering from cats, holing up behind a couch, and constantly biting his nails, even at the sound of a cat on television. (Bentley was recently outfitted with special lace-up booties to preserve the nails.)
THIS WEEK IN EWWWWW
Ratnagiri, India, businessman Murad Mulla, 48, filed a complaint recently with the Maharashtra Medical Council after his surgeon used an outdated procedure to cure his urine-retention disorder. Previously, skin from the scrotum was routinely used for urethral repair, but current science recommends using skin from the mouth to avoid the worst-case risk, which Mulla apparently experienced. Specifically, the scrotum contains both hair-bearing tissue and non-hair-bearing tissue, and only the latter is usable. Evidently, Mullas’ surgeon used hair-bearing tissue, and as a result, Mulla’s urethra itches constantly, and he expels specks of pubic hair with his urine.
LEADING ECONOMIC INDICATORS
Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme cost 16,500 investors a total of as much as $18 billion, according to the court-appointed trustee, but at least Madoff is not on death row. In Hangzhou, China, in November, Ji Wenhua and his brother and their father (who were managers of the Yintai Real Estate and Investment Group) were sentenced to death after their convictions for cheating 15,000 investors out of the equivalent of $1.1 billion. Prosecutors said the men had continued to collect money by claiming profits while losses mounted.
NEWS OF THE PRIVILEGED
Among the high-end items catching consumers’ fancy last holiday season was premium firewood, for those who need to burn trees for reasons beyond merely warming the house. “Pretty white birch logs” were a best-selling item for Paul’s Fireplace Wood of Little Falls, Minn., and the owner of J.N. Firewood (Fort Ripley, Minn.) touted its “really cool blue flame and crackling noises,” according to a December Wall Street Journal report. (The wood itself goes for well over $1 a pound, even before adding the substantial shipping cost.)
POOR ANGER MANAGEMENT
Janet Knowles, 62, was arrested in January in Jupiter, Fla., for aggravated assault after allegedly bludgeoning her housemate, 65, with a hammer as they watched television. The victim said only that Knowles was “upset with Judge Judy.” And Michael Monsour, the former CEO of Monsour Medical Center in Jeannette, Pa., was charged with assaulting his brother, Dr. William Monsour, in their father’s home on New Year’s Eve. In an argument, Michael allegedly bit William’s nose so hard that he required cosmetic surgery. (Michael’s temper remained untempered. The next day, according to police, Michael sent William an email threatening to beat him “into blood pudding.”)
NEED GYM TIME
According to police in Bellingham, Wash., William Lane, 22, had yelled slurs at a lesbian couple in the early morning of Dec. 11 and smashed the car window of one of the women, but she immediately chased him down, tackled him, and held him until help arrived. And Anthony Miranda, 24, was arrested and charged with armed robbery in December in Chicago after unknowingly choosing as his victim an “ultimate fighting” champion. The “victim” gave Miranda two black eyes and a heavily lacerated face, and, as Miranda drew his gun, overpowered him in such a way that Miranda wound up shooting himself in the ankle.
NOT READY FOR PRIME TIME
Keith Savinelli, 21, was arrested in Gallatin County, Mont., in December and charged with attempted burglary involving a woman’s underwear. When the resident caught Savinelli in the act, he attempted to talk her out of reporting him by apologizing and handing her his voter registration card, but she called police, anyway. And a 25-year-old man was rescued by fire crews in Tranent, Scotland, in December and taken to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary. According to police, four men were attempting to steal an eight-ton steamroller when the 25-year-old got his leg trapped underneath. The other three fled.