QUIRKY WORLD ... Hunter’s shame: To have elk antlers and have not

USA: A young Hunter S Thompson went to Idaho to write about Ernest Hemingway and decided to take a piece of his hero home with him — a set of trophy elk antlers.

More than half a century later, the gonzo journalist’s wife returned the antlers to Hemingway’s house in the mountain town of Ketchum.

“He was embarrassed that he took them,” said Anita Thompson, noting the deep respect her husband had for Hemingway’s work. “He wished he hadn’t taken them. He was young, it was 1964, and he got caught up in the moment.

“He talked about it several times, about taking a road trip and returning them.”

She has now returned the antlers to Ketchum Community Library, which helps catalogue and preserve items in the residence where the author took his own life. It is now owned by the Nature Conservancy.

In 1964, Hunter Thompson, then 27, came to Ketchum when he was still a conventional journalist.

He was writing a story for the National Observer about why the globe-trotting Hemingway shot and killed himself at his home three years earlier at age 61. Thompson attributed the suicide in part to rapid changes in the world that led to upheavals in places Hemingway loved most — Africa and Cuba.

Even Ketchum, which in the 1930s and 1940s attracted luminaries such as Gary Cooper, had fallen off the map of cafe society by the late 1950s, Thompson wrote.

In the story, later collected in The Great Shark Hunt, he noted the problem of tourists taking chunks of earth from around Hemingway’s grave as souvenirs. Early in the piece, he wrote about the large elk antlers over Hemingway’s front door but never mentioned taking them. For decades, the antlers hung in a garage at Thompson’s home near Aspen, Colorado.

Giving cops a pizza his mind

USA: Authorities say a drunken driving suspect upset that his vehicle was still impounded a week after his arrest threw pizza and punches at a Pennsylvania police station.

Police in the tiny borough of Dallas say 44-year-old Sean Mulloy showed up and began wrapping a chain around the railing outside the police station. He also had a statue and a full box of pizza with him.

Authorities say when the patrolman who arrested Mulloy last week confronted him at the station, Mulloy started throwing punches and pizza and had to be subdued with a stun gun.

Mulloy is charged with aggravated and simple assault and resisting arrest.

Twin turtle’s power

ITALY: Marine biologists have separated conjoined twin loggerhead turtles and released the surviving newborn into the Mediterranean Sea.

The release occurred along the beaches of Campania where the endangered loggerheads come to nest every year.

Fulvio Maffucci, marine biologist at Anton Dohrn Zoological Station, said there had been only seven known births of conjoined twin loggerheads in the Mediterranean. He said the fact one survived was “extraordinary.” The smaller twin was dead and significantly underdeveloped compared to the larger twin.

Maffucci said: “After the removal of the dead brother from his chest, he crawled from the nest and he’s been released in the wild without any help.”

One of the hatchlings this year also included a rare albino loggerhead.

Wild about West

ENGLAND: A Kanye West fan queued for more than 15 hours with no sleep in the hope of bagging merchandise from the rapper’s first pop-up shop in the UK.

West announced on Wednesday that 21 shops would open in locations around the world to sell products tied to The Life of Pablo.

Carlos Rico, 19, from Essex, a part-time retail assistant and clothes designer, managed to secure the first place in the queue at the Old Street venue in London.

Robber racoons

USA: Two masked intruders were captured after entering the Oklahoma Capitol, rummaging through a senator’s office, and splashing around in a second-floor toilet — but they turned out to be raccoons.

Security footage shows the pair sneaking down a senate hallway at night and exploring an office. A cleaning crew trapped the raccoons and called animal control officers. The two raccoons are being taken to a wildlife sanctuary.

Underwater Buddha

CAMBODIA: Villagers have held a ceremony asking spirits to help recover Buddhist statues their ancestral tales say were buried in a nearby river.

Buddhist monks joined some 500 locals at the ceremony by the Tonle Sap River, where divers recently recovered eight small statues of Buddha and claim to have spotted another that is about 2m tall. They asked the spirits of water and earth to help them raise any statues still buried as much as 20m underwater.

Stories passed down by villagers’ ancestors tell of the statues being buried in the river hundreds of years ago to hide them from marauders from other areas or neighbouring Siam (Thailand).


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