QUIRKY WORLD ... Sailor woken by snoring did not find friend just crashing

USA:  A sailor who was woken by snoring found a baby sea lion asleep on a bunk in his boat.

Michael Duffy was on his 41ft (12.5m) Kettenburg boat Elixir at San Diego Yacht Club when he awoke. Hearing snoring and sneezing, he thought it might be a friend crashing after a night out, but could not find anybody. Once it got light, he heard it again, and that is when he found a 16kg sea lion pup on another bunk, curled up like a dog on top of his board shorts.

“It was a tiny little guy, and I was kind of shocked, but he was basically asleep,” Mr Duffy said. “Then he heard me coming, so he kind of looked up a little bit like when a dog is sleeping and you want to wake it up and it doesn’t want to wake up.”

Weed in the weeds


It wasn’t the world’s best-hidden marijuana plantation.

Berlin police say they were called to a subway station on Monday morning by a street cleaner who reported finding “numerous small plants that seemed suspicious to him”.

Officers found 700 small cannabis plants growing among weeds on a traffic island outside the Kottbusser Tor station in the capital’s Kreuzberg district. They pulled up the plants.

It wasn’t immediately clear who planted the cannabis but police are investigating.

Prince of the selfie


A statue erected in a Turkish city of an Ottoman prince taking a selfie with a mobile phone has met swift and violent criticism.

Just days after it was erected, vandals — perhaps offended by disparagement of Ottoman history — have hacked off the phone and the prince’s sword. The mayor’s office in Amasya, an hour south of the Black Sea coast, says police have been ordered to guard the disarmed prince.

The statue, intended to attract tourists, has its defenders. As intended, some people have been mugging for their own selfies with the eccentric prince.

Sit Robo, sit


Robot dogs are likely to be replacing man’s best friend in homes around the world in as little as a decade, an expert has claimed.

Animal welfare researcher Jean-Loup Rault believes “real” pets will soon become a luxury in an overpopulated world. And he expects people to form genuine emotional attachments to their virtual and mechanical animal companions.

“It might sound surreal for us to have robotic or virtual pets, but it could be totally normal for the next generation,” said Mr Rault, from the University of Melbourne in Australia.

Packing off the pounds


A biscuit factory worker lost 18 stone (114kg) after being warned that his blood pressure was so high he should be dead.

Gary Marsden, 47, was so spooked that he shed nearly half his body weight following a routine medical at work three years ago.

The father of one, from Batley in West Yorkshire, had been overweight for 20 years after piling on the pounds when he settled down with wife Pamela. He has dropped from 37 stone to 18 stone after changing his diet and taking karate lessons.

Postal staff trick and treat


Austrian post- men and women have begun carrying a second bag — and not because of mail overload.

Aggressive dogs have been making their mark on mail deliverers — 47 were bitten last year — so the post office is sending each delivery worker out with a bag of doggie treats.

Two weeks into the trial, the state broadcaster ORF quoted grateful postwoman Maria Stocker as saying the treats are making a difference: “The dogs are now nice.”




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