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 V.18 No.5 | January 29 - February 4, 2009 

Odds & Ends

Dateline: England—Tracey Fox of Thornley, County Durham, used her own body as a barricade to keep a repairman inside her laundry room in hopes of getting her washing machine fixed. Ten months after purchasing the appliance, it broke down. Fox placed five phone calls in December to have a repairman come out and fix it. Unfortunately, no one was able to come until after Christmas. Finally, on Jan. 13, a man finally showed up to check on the washer. “He said that I’d have to pay for any repairs, even though the machine was still under warranty, and I might as well get a new one because the amount it would cost would be the same as buying another one,” Fox explained. Fed up with her stinky clothes and lack of consumer satisfaction, Fox snapped. The 42-year-old mother of four braced herself against the washroom door and refused to let the repairman leave until the washing machine was fixed. The repairman used a cell phone to call police, after which Fox allowed him to leave. “She did let him go after a matter of minutes,” Inspector Craig Dixon, of Durham Police, told BBC News. “The matter was resolved without any arrests.” Fox told reporters she was not proud of her actions, but felt she had no other option. “It sounds stupid thinking about it now, but it was the final straw,” she said. The Curry’s appliance store where Fox purchased the washer has since offered to replace it at no charge.

“I think it was the sheer number of pacifiers.”

Dateline: Canada—What’s a little blood between boozers? On Sunday, Jan. 18, Police in Alberta responded to a stabbing call at the York Hotel shortly after 9 p.m. When police arrived at the scene, they found the obvious victim in no rush to leave. Instead of going to the hospital, the man returned to his table at the hotel’s bar to finish off his beer. “He’s got a minor poke to his chest, but he’s not giving us any details,” Staff Sgt. Regan James told the Edmonton Sun. “You can imagine the level of his concern was not that high.” Thanks to a lack of cooperation on the part of the victim, no suspects were located.

Dateline: New York—A hungry supermarket shopper who exchanged a bad lobster for some good crab legs turned out to be nothing but “shellfish.” (Sorry.) According to the Albany Times Union, Walter Tessier walked into the Price Chopper in Amsterdam last Saturday night with a lobster and said he wanted to return it because “it was bad.” Store workers were about to allow Tessier to trade the $10.99 lobster for a bag of king crab legs when they discovered the lobster was a little light. Turns out Tessier had eaten the lobster, reassembled the shell parts and stuck them back in the original package. When confronted with the already-consumed crustacean, Tessier allegedly grabbed the crab legs and made a run for it. Montgomery County sheriff’s deputies caught up with Tessier at his home, only to discover he had gobbled the crab legs as well. Tessier was charged with petty larceny and given a ticket to appear in court.

Dateline: Kentucky—A would-be armed robber left empty-handed after realizing his intended target was not a bank but the office of the local water district. On Tuesday, Jan. 13, a man entered the office of the Jessamine South Elkhorn Water District—formerly a branch of Farmers Bank—showed a revolver and demanded money. Nicholasville police spokesperson Scott Harvey said an employee told the man, “We really don’t have any money.” Harvey said the robber responded: “I know you have money. It’s a bank.” He was then informed, “No, sir. It’s not a bank anymore.” According to Harvey, the robber “looked around, realized it wasn’t, and left with nothing.” No one was hurt in the robbery attempt.

Dateline: Missouri—David and Jennifer Zwart of Warson Woods were surprised at the number of pacifiers their 18-month-old daughter was going through. They were even more surprised to find out where those pacifiers ended up. Turns out the couple’s pet English bulldog Lulu had gobbled up 15 of the rubbery suckers. “One by one, over the course of months, we just couldn’t find them,” Jennifer Zwart told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “We kept buying more.” One day, the couple became suspicious when Lulu sniffed at a fallen binky which later mysteriously disappeared. Fearing for Lulu’s safety, they took a trip to the veterinarian’s office. After an X-ray revealed an unusual area in Lulu’s stomach, the vet decided to operate. “They told us, ‘We did find the pacifier,’ ” Jennifer said. “ ‘But then we found another one, and another one, and another one.’ ” By the time vets were done, 15 pacifiers were plucked from Lulu’s belly—along with a bottle cap and part of a basketball. The California-based Veterinary Pet Insurance paid Lulu’s $808 bill and also voted her the most unusual case of the month. “I think it was the sheer number of pacifiers,” Grant Biniasz, a spokesperson for the company, told the Post-Dispatch. Lulu is reportedly doing fine since her surgery.

Compiled by Devin D. O'Leary. E-mail your weird news to devin@alibi.com.

 
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