QUIRKY WORLD ... A daily look at some of the world’s stranger stories

School bus driver charged with driving drunk

USA: A school bus driver has been charged with driving drunk, endangering children, and having an open container of alcohol after police stopped her for driving erratically through Columbus, Ohio.

When police stopped Tia Denton, her blood alcohol content was nearly three times the legal limit.

A nine-year-old girl and 12-year-old boy left on the bus with Denton when she was stopped were not hurt, but they were late because she had gone off her route.

Police found out something was wrong because Denton was 45 minutes late on a route for Southwood Elementary School.

School officials activated a GPS to help locate the bus and the police did the rest.

Journalist to eat tapeworm for show

BRITAIN: The BBC journalist credited with popularising the 5:2 diet will eat a tapeworm for a science show about parasites.

Michael Mosley, who studied the two-days-a-week carlorie-restriction diet in a Horizon documentary, gathered tapeworm cysts from an abattoir and swallowed them for the BBC Four show Infested.

A BBC spokesman said Mosley will “systematically infect himself with some of the most extraordinary, powerful and surprising parasites of them all” including tapeworms, leeches, and lice for the show, which examines their possible medical benefits.

It is part of a season of science shows on BBC Two and Four, including a five-part series called Human Universe and a two-part show about Australian bushfires.

Police chief to be shot with Taser to raise money

USA: Knightstown police chief Danny Baker has used pig roasts and golf tournaments to augment his department’s shrinking budget, but badly in need of $9,000 (€6,600) for a squad car, he’s reprising his most shocking fundraising approach to date: Getting shot by a stun gun.

The jocular 63-year-old and another Knightstown official were planning to have a detective shoot them with a Taser at a free event last night in the middle school gym in their small eastern Indiana town. Spectators — who Baker hopes will feel compelled to donate — will get a firsthand look at how 50,000 volts of low-amp electricity affects the human body.

“It’s a shame we have to go to the extent of having fundraisers and getting electrified and so forth, but with small-town budgets you have to do something to get by,” said Baker, a lifelong Knightstown resident who has been a police official for 35 years.

While Baker concedes his fundraisier is extreme, he says it will also educate the crowd, which will also get to see a police dog demonstration.

Prankster cuts to the chase

CANADA: The city of Windsor has been dealing with a prankster over the last couple months. In October, the anonymous joker turned shrubs into phallic shapes.

Now, it would appear that the phallic sculptor is back. Maybe because his previous works were too abstract, he literally spelled out the word “penis” with trimmed garland near the Windsor Sculpture Garden in the Ontario city.

John Miceli, director of parks and facilities for Windsor, said his department removed the word the same day it learned of its existence. “It’s language we really don’t want to see out on the riverfront,” said Miceli.

Burning issue

USA: Massachusetts authorities believe a restaurant owner in Leominster tried to overcook his business for the second time because of gambling and drug problems.

Jeff Cordio appeared in court on Tuesday to face arson charges after firefighters put out a blaze at the West End Diner for the second time since September.

Firefighters found $4,000 inside the restaurant which Cordio said was for paying his bookies. He has been charged with witness interference and obstruction of justice.


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