Alibi V.24 No.11 • March 12-18, 2015 

Odds & Ends

Odds and Ends

Dateline: Canada

Former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford put the tie he wore when he admitted to smoking crack up for auction on eBay. The NFL logo tie was worn by Ford during a Nov. 5, 2013 press conference in which he admitted to smoking crack cocaine while in office. In all, the tie garnered 111 bids. The high bidder on the tie took it home for $12,997. Ford, who is now a Toronto city councilor, placed the tie and several other pieces of “memorabilia” on the auction site. Ford said 10 percent of the proceeds from the auction will got to Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital.

Dateline: Utah

Utah’s state senate is considering passing a bill that would allow medical marijuana edibles in the state. The DEA evidently thinks that’s a bad idea—for bunny rabbits. Matt Fairbanks, an agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s “marijuana eradication” team, testified in front of a state panel late last month. Among the reasons Fairbanks laid out for banning medical marijuana is that rabbits could get addicted to pot, causing them to lose their natural instincts and sit around all day munching marijuana. According to the Washington Post, Fairbanks claimed that pot farms could have negative environmental consequences, and said he’d seen weed-addicted bunnies at illegal grow sites. “I deal in facts. I deal in science,” Fairbanks told the panel. As Washington Post reporter Christopher Ingraham points out in his article, however, “I don’t know that the occasional high rabbit constitutes grounds for keeping marijuana prohibition in place, any more than drunk squirrels are an argument for outlawing alcohol. And don’t even get me started on the nationwide epidemic of catnip abuse.”

Dateline: Nebraska

On the other hand, no one’s arguing that marijuana makes its users geniuses. According to the Lincoln Journal Star, a 21-year-old Lincoln man was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and possession of less than an ounce of marijuana. Lancaster County Sheriff’s deputies stopped the unnamed driver around 9pm on Saturday, Feb. 28. During a routine search of the vehicle, a deputy located a plastic, 16-ounce sour cream container. Despite the fact that the container was clearly labeled “Not Weed,” officers opened it and found 11.4 grams of marijuana. The man admitted the drug was his and was cited.

Dateline: Pennsylvania

Better late than never. Authorities in Duncansville say 33-year-old motorist Michael Traveny called an insurance company from a crash scene to buy auto insurance and filed a claim the next day. The Altoona Mirror reports that the Pennsylvania State Attorney General’s Office has filed charges against Traveny for insurance fraud. Traveny is accused of crashing into the back of another car at a red light on Aug. 21. Investigators claim that Traveny handed his auto insurance card over to the other driver, who noted that the policy was expired. Traveny then allegedly used his cell phone to call Safe Auto Insurance from the scene of the accident and purchased a new policy. Traveny called the company back the next day and told them he had just gotten in an accident. The cost of the claim was $3,902.40. Traveny is free on a $50,000 bond and will face felony theft and misdemeanor insurance fraud counts as well as felony theft by deception charges when he goes to court on March 17.

Dateline: New Jersey

A New Jersey appellate court has ruled that a man cannot sue for damages after burning his head while praying over a sizzling steak fajita skillet at a Burlington County Applebee’s. Hiram Jimenez filed suit against the casual dining restaurant, claiming a waitress did not warn him that the “sizzling steak fajita skillet” was hot. Jimenez says he bowed his head to pray over the food and felt a “burning sensation” in his left eye and on his face. The man says he then panicked and knocked the food onto his lap, causing further damage. None of the burns left scars, however. The incident occurred in March 2010 at an Applebee’s restaurant in Westampton. A lower court dismissed the lawsuit, saying the sizzling skillet posed an “open and obvious” danger. Nonetheless, Jimenez appealed. Earlier this month the appellate court upheld the lower court’s decision. In their ruling the appellate judges noted that Jimenez himself described the sizzling skillet as “real hot” and visibly smoking. Therefore, they said, the danger was self-evident.

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