Odd Files

LEAD STORY

Top Gun: Todd Whitehurst may be the “father” of from 42 to 60 children, based on statistical probability that recognizes his virtuosity as a sperm donor, according to a June New York Post profile (though one website, Donor Sibling Registry, claims to have documented 129 children sired by an unnamed seed demon, who is one […]

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Somehow, upscale restaurateurs believe that diners will soon willingly pay more for a beef dish if it comes with disclosure of the DNA of the actual cow being eaten, according to a May Associated Press report. “People want to know where their food is coming from,” said one excited chef, lauding the knowledge to be […]

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Giddyup! When a strain of equine herpes led to a temporary quarantine at horse farms in central Utah, the sponsors of the Davis County Mounted Posse Junior Queen contest in May had a dilemma, but instead of canceling the competition in which the cowgirls show their skills on horseback, they decided to conduct the show […]

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A 53-year-old man with failing eyesight and who had recently undergone intestinal surgery told Sonoma, Calif., police that on Sunday afternoon, May 1, a woman had come to his home and instructed him to drop his pants and get face-down on the bed so that she could administer an enema. He said he assumed his […]

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In Chinese legend, tea leaves picked by fairies using not their hands but just their mouths yielded brewed tea that would bring prosperity and cure diseases, and now the historic, picturesque Jiuhua Mountain Tea Plantation (in Gushi, Henan province) has promised to hire up to 10 female virgins to provide the equivalently pure and delicate […]

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Ellenbeth Wachs, 48, was arrested in Lakeland, Fla., in May on a complaint that she “simulated” a sex act in front of a minor. In a March incident, Wachs, after receiving medication for her multiple sclerosis, was awakened at 8:30 a.m. by her 10-year-old neighbor boy’s clamorous basketball game, near Wachs’ window. After unsuccessfully beseeching […]

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The cure for emphysema is cigarette smoke piped directly into the lungs, according to chemist Gretha Zahar, whose clinic has treated 60,000 people in Jakarta, Indonesia, in the past decade. Zahar (with a Ph.D. from Padjadjaran University in West Java) modifies the tobacco smoke with “nanotechnology” to remove “free radicals” and adjust the mercury levels […]

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Equal justice under the law might just depend simply on whether a judge’s stomach is growling when he pronounces sentence, according to a study of 1,000 parole decisions during 50 courtroom days observed by students from Columbia University and Israel’s Ben Gurion University for an April journal article. The students found that, day after day, […]

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Businesses typically resist government regulation, but in March Florida’s interior designers begged the state House of Representatives to continue controlling them, with a theatrically ham-handed lobbying campaign challenging a deregulation bill. Designers righteously insisted that only “licensed professionals” (with a minimum six years of college and experience) could prevent the nausea Floridians would suffer from […]

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A 200-exhibit installation on the history of dirt and filth and their importance in our lives opened in a London gallery in March, featuring the ordinary (dust), the educational (a video tribute to New York’s Fresh Kills landfill, at one time the world’s largest), the medical (vials of historic, nasty-looking secretions from cholera victims), and […]