Odds & Ends

Odds & Ends

Devin D. O'Leary
4 min read
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Dateline: Malaysia

According to a report on BBC News, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department, a religious government body, said it has asked food outlets selling hot dogs to rename the product or risk being refused halal certification. “In Islam dogs are considered unclean and the name cannot be related to halal,” Director Sirajuddin Suhaimee announced. Local media reports that Malaysian halal food guidelines specify “halal food and halal artificial flavor shall not be named or synonymously named after non-halal products such as ham, bak kut teh, bacon, beer, rum and others that might create confusion.” The hot dog brouhaha popped up in early October when popular pretzel chain Auntie Anne’s was refused halal certification unless it renamed its “pretzel dog” a “pretzel sausage.” A representative from the US firm told the BBC it was fine with the name change, but others in the Asian nation are upset. Malaysian Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Aziz told reporters, “Even in Malay, it’s called hot dog—it’s been around for so many years. I’m Muslim and I’m not offended.” The minister added that the word “comes from the English language. Please do not make us seem stupid and backward.” The ruling has garnered significant ridicule in local media and on Malaysian social media. Malaysia is a majority Muslim country that prides itself on practicing a moderate form of Islam and allowing other religions freedom of worship, although conservative attitudes have reportedly been on the rise in recent years.

Dateline: Japan

Asahi Shimbun newspaper is reporting that a patient was seriously burned during a surgery at a university hospital in Tokyo after farting during the procedure. The incident occurred at the Tokyo Medical University Hospital in Shinjuku Ward on April 15 of this year. According to a report released by the hospital on Oct. 28, the patient was in her 30s and was undergoing an operation that applied a laser to her cervix, the lower part of the uterus. The laser is believed to have ignited the gas she passed, burning much of her body, including her waist and legs. A committee of outside experts who looked into the case determined that the equipment was functioning normally and that no flammable materials were present in the operating room at the time of the surgery. The report concluded that, “When the patient’s intestinal gas leaked into the space of the operation [room], it ignited with the irradiation of the laser, and the burning spread, eventually reaching the surgical drape and causing the fire.”

Dateline: Florida

A Florida man was arrested after allegedly robbing a bank, going out for a drink and then returning to the scene of the crime when police arrived. The
Palm Beach Post reports 36-year-old Stephen Daniel Stump, entered a Key West bank on Tuesday, Oct. 25, at 12:30pm and demanded money. He told the clerk he had a bomb in his backpack. Stump, who is believed to be homeless, left with an undisclosed amount of money and made his way to a nearby bar called Mangoes where he grabbed a drink. “He paid with a $50 bill from the robbery, telling the bartender to keep the change,” city spokesperson Alyson Crean told FlKeysNews.com.When Stump heard the police sirens, he evidently returned to the bank to see what was going on. Police said a bank employee spotted Stump outside of the window while officers were interviewing witnesses. Stump was arrested on felony charges of robbery and falsely reporting an explosive device. All the money was recovered.

Dateline: Kansas

A Kansas State University student claims a snack-hungry burglar broke into his car just to steal a Kit Kat candy bar. Hunter Jobbins tweeted a photo of a note he found in his car after he left it “for maybe 15 minutes in front of the dorms.” The note, scrawled on a napkin, read, “Saw Kit Kat in your cup holder. I love Kit Kats so I checked your door and it was unlocked. Did not take anything other that the Kit Kat. I am sorry and hungry.” Jobbins did not report the crime to campus police, however—a day after he posted his tweet—the Hershey’s company responded, “Who steals someone’s Kit Kat?!
Who does that?! Shoot us a DM and we’ll replace it for you.” By Thursday, Nov. 3, the company stuffed Jobbins’ car full of 6,500 Kit Kats, which he handed out to fellow students.

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

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