Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Week That Was

Thought for the day: Wrinkles are something other people have. You have character lines.

It is a gorgeous day here today. There's wall-to-wall sunshine, and the flowers are really strutting their stuff. Supposed to hit eighty degrees later, but there's still a cool gentle breeze blowing this morning. It's the kind of day the Chamber of Commerce dreams about, and the kind I'd love to capture in a bottle. Just think how wonderful it'd be to pull that bottle down off the shelf in the middle of dreary Janu-ugly or Febru-weary.

Before I strap on a face mask and go fork lift away the pollen so I can do some yardwork, let's take a brief look at some of the weird news stories of the week. I'll still give you the one I deem the weirdest, but have decided to touch on a few others this week, as well. (Just call me lazy. It's easier than coming up with another topic for today's blog.)

There was a TV show on in the 60s or so, affectionately known as TW3, which stood for "That Was The Week That Was." Unfortunately, the show was fairly short-lived, but my mother and I both loved it. It was on every Friday night, and was a satirical look at the previous week's news stories. Very hip, and smart. Or maybe we were very un-hip, and un-smart. Like I said, the show didn't last long. More's the pity. They'd sure have some great news stories to satirize nowadays.

Ah well, here's my little glimpse at the week that was:

The mayor of Neuville-en-Ferrain, a French town of 10,000 people, had enough. Since 2007, he's been sharing his town hall space with a buxom terracotta statue of Marianne, the female embodiment of the French republic, but this past week, he unceremoniously evicted her. The problem? Her breasts were too big. Even though the mayor personally approved the artist's plans for the statue, he'd evidently had his fill of staring at her .... eyes? .... every day. The artist said the bust was purposely overendowed to depict the "generosity of the republic," but at least one town hall worker was glad to see the statue go. She said it was causing gossip. However, another offical deeply regretted the mayor's unilateral decision. I reckon he'll miss that busty bust.

After enjoying a taste of freedom, a Spanish prisoner is now back in custody. In December, while he was in jail awaiting a court date, jail authorities received a fax, allegedly from a regional court, ordering the prisoner's release. That fax was followed up by a phone call, allegedly from that same court, and then another fax. All were actually from the man's wife. Pretty crafty, and evidently, effective, too. The pair used the same MO to get him out of jail in October. Just goes to show ya: check the facts when ya get a fax!

This story is just plain sad. A divorcing couple in China are involved in a bizarre auction. They're bidding over their 4-year-old son, and not for who gets to keep custody, either. Loser gets "stuck" with the kid. Each parent is bidding for how big of a lump sum of money (s)he is willing to pay the other to be free of the child forever. The mother claims she doesn't have the necessary skills to raise a child on her own, and the father says he'll lose his job if he has to care for a child full-time. So, neither of them want this boy. Now, one of these so-called parents will end up with a large sum of money, and whichever one of them wins, this poor child loses.

OK, I'll just bid a fond adieu before hitting you with the weirdest story of the week. I hope you all have a glorious rest of the weekend.

Until later, take care of yourselves. And each other.

And here it is, the moment you've all been waiting for, the.....

Weirdest News Story of the Week:  We've all suffered writer's block from time to time, staring at the blank computer screen or sheet of paper. The pen or pencil in our hand becomes virtually useless, because it's like we don't even remember what to do with it anymore. Consider Cao Ruiquin. For him, writer's block would take on a whole new meaning. He's a 44-year-old man from China who doesn't just hold that writing implement in his hand. Oh, no. He's taught himself to write by using FORTY-THREE different body parts. He uses such unusual parts as his eyes, ear holes, nostrils, finger gaps, wrist, armpit, belly button, (must have an innie) elbow, and knee joints. That leaves a whole lot more to imagine, but I don't even want to go there. He said he learned calligraphy when he was six, and started using other body parts to write when a disabled friend of his died. Says it's a way to "invent a way for disabled people to write and improve their confidence in life." Word has it that he's seeking a place in the Guinness record book. He's sure got it by me. So, next time you're suffering from a little bout of writer's block, think about Mr. Ruiquin. Think about how it'd be to suffer writer's block with that quill stuck in your (you fill in the blank)


  1. I loved the Spanish prisoner story. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Glad you liked it, and thanks so much for the comment. Enjoy your weekend!

  3. Forty-three body parts?? WOW. Just WOW. Hats off to Mr. Ruiquin. :D Hope you're having a great weekend!

  4. You betcha. I can't even think of 43 possible body parts that might work to hold a pen. (Not on MY body, anyway!)

    Take care.

  5. I wonder if one of those body parts is, nether region. I mean, I've read some stuff that seems like the writer pulled it out of his/her...*ahem* This could explain it. ;)