Ice cream truck is coming: Take cover?
Updated: September 14, 2012 - 3:07 PM
New York City was the scene this summer of a particularly nasty turf war among ice cream trucks vying for space on the city's choicest blocks. Most aggressive, according to a July New York Post report, are the drivers of Mister Softee trucks. Said a Yogo frozen yogurt vendor, "If you see a Mister Softee truck, you know bad things are coming," including, reported the Post, such hardball tactics as cutting rival trucks' brake lines.
'Love hotel' for dogs
Short-stay "love hotels" proliferate in Brazil, but in July in the city of Belo Horizonte, Fabiano Lourdes and his sister Daniela were about to open Animalle Mundo Pet, which they described as a love hotel for dogs. Owners would bring their mating-ready canines to rooms that feature the dim lighting and heart-shaped ceiling mirrors traditional in love hotels.
Latest orangutan news
1) Jungle Island zoo in Miami uses iPads so that orangutans can order food by pointing at their choices on a screen. As zookeeper Linda Jacobs noted, "They have all the intelligence they need [but not] developed vocal chords and voiceboxes." 2) A Taru Jurug Zoo official in Central Java, Indonesia, reported in July that Tori, its famous, 13-year-old cigarette-smoking orangutan, had been moved with her boyfriend to an isolated island with recreational facilities so she could kick her nicotine habit. At Taru Jurug, visitors kept enabling her by tossing her cigarettes.
Least competent criminals
1) The thief who snatched a new bike from Wheelworks in Belmont, Mass., in August got away, but police saw surveillance photos of him when he returned to the store two hours later and asked to see some locks -- presumably so he could secure the bike he had just stolen. Employees gave chase, but the thief ran faster. 2) Kristen DeCosta, 30, was charged with 17 recent burglaries around Somerset, Mass., in August. According to Police Chief Joseph Ferreira, DeCosta is perhaps the only perp ever not to understand that, since she was wearing a GPS ankle monitor (from an earlier arrest), all 17 break-ins were tracked.
Jacob Kost, 23, was charged with murder after allegedly running down a man with his truck in Cornelius, N.C., in June following a barroom altercation. According to police, the two men were challenging each other as to which one had the best truck.
Migration by plane
In July, the U.K.'s Wildlife Aid Foundation took in a dying, parasite-infested cuckoo bird, but by the time it had been nursed back to health, it had missed its species' winter migration toward Africa. Consequently, according to BBC News, the foundation bought an airline ticket for a handler to carry the bird to Italy, where satellite tracking indicated it could meet up with the end of the migrating flock, and the handler released it.
Government at work?
The Treasury Department's inspector general reported in August that the IRS doled out more than $5 billion in fraudulent income tax returns in 2011. The agency "refunded" $3.3 million to a single address in Lansing, Mich. -- supposedly the home of 2,137 different tax filers -- and nearly $4 million to three Florida addresses. In all, refunds were claimed by, among others, 105,000 dead people.
© 2013 Star Tribune
Powered by Limelight Networks