Odds & Ends

Odds & Ends

Joshua Lee
5 min read
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Dateline: New York

man holding the Guinness World Record for the longest fingernails on a single hand has removed them after 66 years. NBC4 in New York reports Shridhar Chillal was flown from India to New York earlier this month to have his fingernails removed for the first time since 1952. Chillal’s nails are over 31 feet long and are now on display at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum in Time’s Square. According to Chillal, he began growing the nails on his left hand because of an incident with one of his teachers during childhood. Chillal says he was pushed down by a classmate, and the resulting scuffle caused their teacher to break a nail. The teacher then reprimanded the boys, saying they didn’t understand the discipline it took to grow the nail. To prove the teacher wrong, Chillal began growing the nails on his left hand and never stopped. Due to years of maintaining the fingernails, Chillal’s fingers have become permanently fused and his left hand is permanently disabled. A circular saw was used to cut off the fingernails, and footage of the procedure was uploaded to YouTube. It is believed that Chillal’s fingernails will resume normal growth.

Dateline: Texas

Firefighters in Austin were repeatedly called to a chip factory after tortilla chips spontaneously combusted. According to a Facebook post published by the
Austin Fire Department, emergency crews were called to a factory where a “new way to handle the waste” resulted in what authorities referred to as “spontaneous combustion.” The fire was reportedly confined to some food pallets stored outside the building. Firefighters were able to contain the blaze, but said that additional cardboard boxes carrying the food waste ignited while they were on the scene. Three days later, firefighters were called to the factory once more to put out flames caused by another group of “previously uninvolved” boxes filled with the waste. To eliminate further risk of fire, factory workers drowned all the boxes that had not caught fire. No damages were reported in either case. Why the chips spontaneously combusted has not been made clear. The Austin Fire Department said they take cases like this seriously as tortilla chips are “responsible for holding all manner of very important things—like queso, salsa, nachos, and various other sundry items that are critical to a Texan’s everyday life and well-being.”

Dateline: Austria

Public transportation staff in Vienna handed out deodorant to mass commuters last week in an effort to battle unpleasant odors on the city’s rapid transit system.
The Washington Post reports that temperatures in up to half of Vienna’s U6 subway lines reached 95 degrees Fahrenheit this summer, prompting transportation authorities to take action against any bad smells that might arise by giving away free cans of deodorant spray. The campaign appeared to have been successful, as staff with the Wiener Linien public transport company reportedly ended up handing out 14,000 cans within a single day. Employees said the cans were “snatched” from their hands. A spokesperson for the company told reporters that Austrians weren’t any smellier than anyone else, and that the effort was “primarily intended as a consolation.” Some cars on the U6 are outfitted with the luxury, but questions about whether the transportation company should install air conditioners on all their lines have been raised.

Dateline: China

A commercial airplane copilot allegedly caused a passenger plane to drop nearly 20,000 feet because he was vaping an electronic cigarette. According to
CNN, an unnamed copilot for Air China was vaping in the cockpit and attempted to switch off the plane’s air recycling fans in an attempt to keep the vapor from passing into the passenger cabin. Officials from the Civil Aviation Administration of China say the copilot pressed the wrong switch, mistakenly turning off the aircraft’s air conditioning system, leading to a drop in oxygen levels. The plane reportedly dropped from above 32,800 feet to below 13,100 feet in less than 9 minutes. Chinese state media reported that the aircraft eventually climbed back to around 24,600 feet before finishing the flight with less-than-adequate oxygen levels in the cabin. The jetliner landed safely. Senior CAAC official Qiao Yibin told reporters he would order “severe punishment in accordance with laws and regulations” for the copilot.

Dateline: Tennessee

A man allegedly stole his date’s car and used it to pick up another date.
WREG-3 in Memphis reports Kelton Griffin allegedly showed up for a date with Faith Pugh without a car. The couple got into Pugh’s black Volvo, but Griffin said he didn’t know where to take her. They eventually stopped at a gas station, where Griffin reportedly asked Pugh to step inside and buy a cigar. When she returned from the store, she found her car and Griffin had vanished. Pugh says she then received a text message from her God sister, saying she was out on a date with Griffin. Pugh and her mother reportedly followed GPS information provided by the God sister and were able to confront Griffin. Pugh’s God sister reportedly paid for the pair’s tickets to see a drive-in movie. Griffin was arrested by police that evening.

Compiled by Joshua Lee. Email your weird news to josh@alibi.com.

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