Pilot lets pal in cockpit
INDIA: A pilot has been accused of allowing his friend to sit for a long period inside the cockpit. When an airhostess asked the passenger to return to his seat, not only did the pilot object, he also snapped at the crew member who was doing her duty and misbehaved with her.
The pilot has been grounded after the crew member filed a police complaint, reports The Times of India.
The passenger in the middle of the storm was a customs officer travelling on duty. He stayed inside the cockpit during the entire journey, says the daily. His actions violated all safety rules that are supposed to be strictly followed in all flights.
The pilot's future would be decided by the civil aviation authorities after they look into the incident closely and also check his track record. According to some sources who spoke to the daily, the pilot tended to get involved in controversies and he had allegedly dodged a breath-analyzer test for alcohol recently.
Meanwhile, the police has filed a report against him charging him of outraging a women's modesty.
Police dog fires gun
MASSACHUSETTS: Police say a dog searching for a gun in a snowbank accidentally pulled the trigger with its paw, firing the weapon.
No humans —or dogs — were hurt.
The episode started at about 2am Sunday when an officer on patrol heard three gunshots. When the officer went to investigate, he saw a vehicle speed away.
When the car pulled over, police saw a man leap out and bury something in the snow.
Ivan, a dog handled by the Essex County Sheriff's Department, was called to the scene to find whatever was buried in the snow. Police say he started digging furiously and fired the gun.
Three men were arrested and police determined the gun had been stolen in Manchester, NH, in October. (AP)
Dreaded prison turns posh hotel
HOLLAND: People are ready to pay a lot of money to spend some time in what used to be one of Holland's most notorious prisons. However, the once-feared cells have now been given a massive makeover and turned into luxury hotel rooms.
The 105 cells at Het Arresthuis have been converted into 40 spacious rooms, featuring modern furnishings and chic interior design, reports the Daily Mail.
The rooms boast their own hi-tech television, WiFi as well as personal coffee and tea machine.
Other amenities that the exclusive hotel provides to its guests include sauna, fitness centre, central patio with olive trees as well as an organic herb garden.
The Judgement House or Het Arresthuis has undergone such a successful makeover that the hotel has received one of the highest ratings in the country by Trip Advisor website.
Man caught with 49 phones in his trousers
A wily criminal was snared with a haul of 49 mobile phones stuffed down his trousers, Swiss police said Monday.
The 27-year-old Romanian -- believed to be either the actual thief or a receiver of stolen goods -- was arrested over the weekend in the city of Zurich, AFP said.
To transport his stash, he had used an idea fit for a spy movie, by putting on two pairs of trousers with the ankle-seams sewn together.
The phones had been reported stolen from a techno party in Zurich.
5ft tall woman has 6ft+ long hair
CHINA: Cen Yingyuan, a Chinese woman says she is addicted to her hair.
At 6ft and 7inches in length her, he tresses are longer than she is.
According to a Daily Mail report, she takes an hour an half to wash her hair daily.
A resident of Guangxi province, the 44-year-old says she stands over a bucket to wash her hair.
Her secret to keep it shining is to use a bottle of beer.
Dog shoots man...may be
MIAMI: Police added a dose of skepticism on Wednesday to a report about a man who says he was shot by his dog while driving down a Florida highway.
Commander Steve Carr, a police spokesman in the central town of Sebring, where the shooting occurred on Saturday, said there were "some indications" the shooting victim may have made up his "dog shoots man" story.
Gregory Lane Lanier, 35, told police he thought the 9mm Beretta semi-automatic handgun on the floor of his pickup truck was unloaded when the black and tan English bulldog kicked it and caused it to fire.
Lanier was hit in his left leg and the bullet wound, patched up at a local hospital, was not serious.
"It's what he claims," Carr said of Lanier's account. "We didn't spend a lot of time investigating it. There doesn't appear to be any criminal act involved. You don't have to be licensed in Florida to carry a handgun."
Lanier could not be reached for comment on Wednesday. Calls to a phone number listed for him in a Sebring Police Department report on the highway shooting went unanswered. (Reuters)
Teen walks 16km in snow for job
INDIANAPOLIS: When a teenager asked for directions to a venue where walk-in-interviews were being held, little did he know that he would talk himself into a job right there.
The teenager did not have enough money for a bus ride and had plans of walking all the way to where the interviews were taking place - 16kms away in horrible weather conditions and freezing temperatures, reports News.com.au.
By sheer luck, he stopped to ask for directions when he reached Art Bouvier, the owner of Papa Roux Po Boys and Cajun Food. The teenager told the man that he was planning to trek through snow for the next 16kms in order to apply for the job.
Art Bouvier was impressed and surprised to find how enterprising and determined the 18-year-old was for a job that would just about pay the minimum wage.
The owner was so happy that he recruited the young man to work for his Papa Rouz team.
Steel on the menu in Hollywood
LOS ANGELES: George the Giant, towering over onlookers gathered to see performers swallow steel, hammers a 6-1/2 inch (16.5 cm) nail up his nostril, rips a phone book in half with his bare hands and dangles a full bottle of Coke from his eyelids with fish hooks.
The world's tallest sword swallower, at 7 feet 3 inches (2.2 metres), he was under strict doctor's orders not to participate in the main event at the 6th Annual "World Sword Swallower's Day" due to an unrelated injury, but remained intent on pleasing the crowd.
He was among performers on Hollywood Boulevard outside of Ripley's Believe it or Not! on Saturday for a death-defying show that would ultimately see 234 inches (6 meters) of metal swallowed simultaneously by some of America's best sword swallowers.
"Every time you swallow a sword you're cheating death," George said of the art he's practiced for the past two decades. The longest sword he's swallowed was 33 inches (84 cm) long and one and a half inches (3.8 cm) wide. "It's a rush to watch people as they watch you do these things that others can't do."
As these professionals threw their heads back and "dropped sword," the adrenaline pumped from the performers out into the Hollywood crowd as they excitedly cheered.
With preparations for Sunday's Academy Awards show under way across the street, about 100 passers-by gathered with anticipation as the performers swallowed steel.
Amy Amnesia, a 32-year-old performer, told Reuters this was her first public appearance. Explaining that the minimum requirements were for swords 14 inches (35.5 cm) long and a half-inch (1.3 cm) wide, she said her particular sword of choice is 19 inches (48 cm).
"You have to get your body used to this new paradigm of having a large solid object down your throat," she said, explaining that she had only recently learned the art.
Ripley's, which sponsored the event along with the Sword Swallowers Association International, has supported the sword- swallowing community for 80 years, and such events have made contributions to medicine and science by raising money for esophageal cancer research.
According to Ripley's General Manager and new sword swallowing trainee Andrea Silverman, the best way to learn is to first start training with a wire coat hanger.
"The average person takes six months to get comfortable and a year before their first performance," she said.
Brett Loudermilk, 24, first learned to swallow swords when he was 15 years old, saying he "started out with a cake spatula and then moved to a wire coat hanger."
Why does Loudermilk perform? "It's great providing people with a sense of wonder." (REUTERS)
Boy dials 911 to avoid bedtime
BROCKTON: Police in Massachusetts say a 10-year-old boy called 911 because he didn't want to go to bed.
Brockton police say the boy made the emergency call just after 8 p.m. Wednesday and told the dispatcher he was calling to report his mother because he did not want to go to bed.
There was no emergency.
The Enterprise reports that according to the police log, an officer went to the boy's home and explained to him when it's appropriate — and when it's not — to call 911.
No one was charged. (AP)
Probe into police dog's statement
ENGLAND: Police officials could be in deep trouble after it was found that a dog recorded a statement at a police station in the West Midlands, England.
The police dog, Peach, an alsatian recorded a brief statement that said: "I chase him. I bite him. Bad man. He tasty. Good boy. Good boy Peach."
The statement was 'signed' at the bottom by a pug mark as well.
The statement was put on paper after a barrage of requests from the Crown Prosecution Service for an account from PC Peach on a crime frustrated the officers, said the Daily Mail.
"The matter will be investigated," DCI Julian Harper, from West Midlands Police, told Huffington Post.
Air force coffee made from radiator water
SWEDEN: Those working in a Swedish air base have been unknowingly getting their coffee water from a radiator after an error was committed and the pipes were wrongly connected.
The error came to light only after the system was shut down recently for maintenance, according to reports in local media.
"As the coffee is black and the radiator water is a bit brown, then we haven't noticed the difference," said Capt Catharina Bergsell, of the F17 squadron told the media.
The coffee machine had been wrongly connected with radiator water pipes instead of drinking water pipe.
Officials at air base thought that the weird taste of coffee was due to the low quality of the vending machine coffee compared to freshly-ground coffee.
Hitler, Frankenstein run for Indian election
INDIA: The tiny northeast Indian state of Meghalaya has a special fascination for interesting and sometimes controversial names, and the ballot for state elections Saturday is proof.
Among the 345 contestants running for the state assembly are Frankenstein Momin, Billykid Sangma, Field Marshal Mawphniang and Romeo Rani. Some, like Kenedy Marak, Kennedy Cornelius Khyriem and Jhim Carter Sangma, are clearly hoping for the electoral success of their namesake American presidents.
Then there is Hitler.
This 54-year-old father of three has won three elections to the state assembly with little controversy over being named after the Nazi dictator.
His father had worked with the British army, but apparently developed enough of a fascination with Great Britain's archenemy to name his son Adolf Hitler — though he also gave him the middle name Lu, Hitler said.
"I am aware at one point of time Adolf Hitler was the most hated person on Earth for the genocide of the Jews. But my father added 'Lu' in between, naming me Adolf Lu Hitler, and that's why I am different," Hitler told The Associated Press from the small village of Mansingre, 200 kilometers (125 miles) west of Gauhati, the capital of the nearby state of Assam.
Hitler said his name has not stopped him from traveling the world, including to the United States and Germany.
"I never had problems obtaining a visa but I was asked many times during immigration as to why I should have such a name. I told the immigration staff I possibly didn't have a role in my naming," he said.
India had thousands of troops fighting alongside the allies in World War II, especially in North Africa and Burma, but many Indians view Hitler not as the personification of evil but as a figure of fascination. Hitler's book "Mein Kampf" is prominently displayed at many Indian bookstores. The owner of a menswear shop named his store "Hitler," then expressed puzzlement last year after Israel complained.
Musfika Haq, a teacher in Meghalaya's capital, Shillong, said such names are common in the state.
"Parents obviously get fascinated by names of well-known or great leaders, but must be unaware that some of them, like Hitler, had been highly controversial," he said. (AP)
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