Weird Wide Web http://www.globalpost.com/taxonomy/term/19857/all en Weird Wide Web http://www.globalpost.com/internal/blog-config/weird-wide-web <!--paging_filter--><p> News you wish you didn&#39;t know.</p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-section-about-block"> <div class="field-label">About This Section block contents:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <!--paging_filter--><div id="blog_block"> <div id="blog_block_title"> ABOUT THIS BLOG</div> <div id="blog_description"> <p> The word news most often conjures up visions of U.S. troops in Afghanistan, the troubled global economy, a political crisis in Washington, erupting volcanoes and devastating earthquakes. But as we all know, there is far more to news than that. Indeed, it&rsquo;s often the wacky, weird, offbeat and sometimes off-color stories that can most intrigue and fascinate us. Those stories can range from changing astrological signs to lost pyramids in Egypt but in their essence they all cast new light on the shared human condition in all of its wild diversity.</p> </div> </div> <!--/the_bloggers--><!--/the_bloggers--> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-images"><div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-sectionheaderimage"> <div class="field-label">Header Banner Image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="filefield-file"><img class="filefield-icon field-icon-image-jpeg" alt="image/jpeg icon" src="http://www.globalpost.com/sites/all/modules/contrib/filefield/icons/image-x-generic.png" /><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/sites/default/files/banners/www_header_670x170.jpg" type="image/jpeg; length=16525">www_header_670x170.jpg</a></div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-singlecol-headerimage"> <div class="field-label">Single-column header image:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_singlecol_headerimage" width="300" height="188" alt="" src="http://www.globalpost.com/sites/default/files/www_single_300x200.jpg?1337086616" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-lead-image"> <div class="field-label">Thumbnail Art:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_lead_image" width="260" height="138" alt="" src="http://www.globalpost.com/sites/default/files/www_hp_260x140.jpg?1337086629" /> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> Weird Wide Web Thu, 01 Jan 1970 00:00:00 +0000 5652584 at http://www.globalpost.com Erection-boosting condom awaits EU backing http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penis-enhancement-erection-boost-condom-durex <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Erection-enhancing condom, featuring an "erectogenic compound," coming to a Durex stand near you? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Freya Petersen </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> News and trade media are reporting on an erection-enhancing condom awaiting EU approval for sale on the European market.</p> <p> The CSD500 condom has gel in the tip that &quot;dilates the arteries and increases <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20110620/od_nm/us_futura_condom_odds;_ylt=AgNRVej2iKNae7mWdxVa0otH2ocA;_ylu=X3oDMTNmYXNvN2gyBGFzc2V0A25tLzIwMTEwNjIwL3VzX2Z1dHVyYV9jb25kb21fb2RkcwRjY29kZQN0b3BnbXB0b3AyMDBwb29sBGNwb3MDOQRwb3MDOQRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX3N0b3JpZXMEc2xrA2VyZWN0aW9uLWJvbw--">blood flow to the penis</a>,&quot; supposedly resulting in a &quot;firmer and bigger erection&quot; ... Reuters reports.</p> <p> According to the Pharmaceutical Business Review, the <a href="http://drugdelivery.pharmaceutical-business-review.com/news/futura-medical-erection-enhancing-condom-gets-eu-recommendation-210611">CSD500 condom</a>&nbsp;&mdash; made by Britain&#39;s Futura Medical, to go on sale as part of the Durex range &mdash; &quot;incorporates an erectogenic compound.&quot;</p> <p> Futura Medical reportedly claims that in a blind study, a &quot;majority of men and women who used CSD500 reported longer lasting sexual experience compared to a standard condom.&quot;</p> <p> Of those who expressed a preference, a significant proportion of both men and women also felt that CSD500 increased the penis size and a significant proportion of women reported a longer-lasting sexual experience.</p> <p> Futura said on its website that the <a href="http://www.futuramedical.com/content/products/csd_500.asp">CSD500 condom</a> was for use by healthy men.&nbsp;</p> <p> A CE mark certification mark would allow for the condom to be sold in 29 European territories and a number of other non-European countries.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penis-enhancement-erection-boost-condom-durex" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Entertainment Europe Offbeat Science Technology Health Weird Wide Web Tue, 21 Jun 2011 17:27:00 +0000 Freya Petersen 5652646 at http://www.globalpost.com Asian millionaires fight over French wines at auction http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/wine-french-asia-alcohol-francois-pinault-salma-hayek <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Asian thirsts for French wines has sent prices skyrocketing, and the most prestigious Bordeaux winemakers are reportedly pulling in "astronomical profits." </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> Asian thirsts for French wines has sent prices skyrocketing, and the most prestigious Bordeaux winemakers are enjoying &quot;astronomical profits,&quot; a French newspaper reports.</p> <p> According to a story in <a href="http://tempsreel.nouvelobs.com/">Le nouvel Observateur</a> (reprinted by Worldcrunch, a new global&mdash;news site that translates stories in foreign languages into English), new <a href="http://www.worldcrunch.com/bordeaux-bubble-chinese-thirst-top-french-labels-could-lead-worldwide-wine-speculation/3264">Chinese millionaires</a> attending a May 17 auction in Hong Kong fought over a handful of wines made by Ch&acirc;teau Latour.</p> <p> One bottle dating back to 1863 which reportedly sold for 48,730 euros, or about $70,039 at the Christie&#39;s auction.</p> <p> Ch&acirc;teau Latour belongs to Francois Pinault, a French businessman who specializes in luxury goods and better known in America as the husband of Hollywood actress Salma Hayek.&nbsp;</p> <p> The story comes after the opening day of the 30th international wine and spirits fair in Bordeaux.</p> <p> Amid financial turmoil in Europe and other regions, wine-makers had expected much from the rising demand of <a href="http://af.reuters.com/article/commoditiesNews/idAFL6E7HK0SG20110620">emerging market economies</a> and in particular countries such as China, Reuters reports.</p> <p> &quot;We have gone through an unprecedented crisis but are in a substantial market,&quot; Xavier de Eizaguirre, chairman of Vinexpo, reportedly said at the opening ceremony. &quot;We see good prospects, especially in the fast-growing economies of Asia and in particular in China.&quot;</p> <p> It was something of a repeat performance for French winemakers with First Growth status under the 1885 Bordeaux Classification.</p> <p> In October 2010, Ch&acirc;teau Lafite Rothschild, from the French wine-producing region of Pauillac, organized an auction in Hong Kong that saw buyers fighting over a bottle of Ch&acirc;teau Lafite Rothschild 1869, which was sold for more than 160,000 euros, or nearly $230,000 today.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/wine-french-asia-alcohol-francois-pinault-salma-hayek" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Asia-Pacific Food & Drink France Weird Wide Web Tue, 21 Jun 2011 18:34:00 +0000 News Desk 5652674 at http://www.globalpost.com Chinese police seize Viagra, porn and "man coffee" in raid http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/chinese-police-siege-viagra-porn-and-man-coffee-drug-raid <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Chinese police have reportedly detained 52 people in a crackdown on pornography and drugs, including the anti-impotence pill Viagra and a substance referred to as "man coffee." </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> Chinese police have reportedly detained 52 people in a crackdown on pornography and drugs, including the anti-impotence pill <a href="http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Asia/Story/STIStory_682291.html">Viagra </a>and a substance referred to as &quot;man coffee.&quot;</p> <p> The Guangzhou ring was reportedly selling the drugs, including &quot;fake&quot; drugs, to the domestic and overseas market, Reuters reports, citing Xinhua.</p> <p> As part of the bust, the police confiscated nearly a million pornographic pictures &quot;used for packaging&quot; and also shut down the printing press.</p> <p> No explanation was apparently offered for the term &quot;man coffee.&quot;</p> <p> Numerous recent government crackdowns on reportedly tainted food products and medicines have apparently had little effect.</p> <p> The Chinese authorities have this year uncovered the sale of drug-tainted pork, bean sprouts treated with a carcinogenic chemicals and stale bread treated with dye to make it seem fresh.</p> <p> Meanwhile, a total of 53 officials involved in the sale of melamine-tainted <a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/110503/china-tainted-milk-infant-formula">milk products</a> &mdash; which killed at least six babies and sickened 300,000 &mdash; were punished last month, with several receiving life sentences in prison.</p> <p> The State Council, or China&#39;s Cabinet, ordered a renewed crackdown against illegal additives to food and medicine, warning of severe penalties.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/chinese-police-siege-viagra-porn-and-man-coffee-drug-raid" target="_blank">read more</a></p> China Culture & Lifestyle Health Weird Wide Web Tue, 21 Jun 2011 20:02:00 +0000 News Desk 5652704 at http://www.globalpost.com 108-year-old prisoner in India is released after being jailed for murders he committed more than 20 years ago http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/indian-prisoner-released-at-108-years-old <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Brij Bihari Pandey, a Hindu priest, was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2009 after his trial dragged through the courts for decades, and then released two years later for humanitarian reasons </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> A convicted <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-13824905">murderer</a> who was the oldest prison inmate in India was released from the Gorakhpur jail this week at the age of 108, according to BBC News.</p> <p> Brij Bihari Pandey, a Hindu priest, was serving a life sentence at the prison in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh for the murder of four people when he was 84 years old. The prison released Bihari on humanitarian grounds.</p> <p> In 1987, Bihari and 15 others, including nephews and other family members, killed four people in Maharajganj over the appointment of a rival as the chief priest of a Hindu temple. The trial dragged through the courts for more than 20 years, until he was <a href="http://www.smh.com.au/world/out-of-jail--at-108-20110619-1g9nw.html">sentenced</a> to life in prison in 2009, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/indian-prisoner-released-at-108-years-old" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Asia-Pacific India Offbeat Weird Wide Web Wed, 22 Jun 2011 03:20:23 +0000 News Desk 5652794 at http://www.globalpost.com Young penguin gets lost, ends up in New Zealand http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penguin-lost-new-zealand <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It's the first live spotting in New Zealand in 44 years. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> A young <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110621/ap_on_fe_st/as_new_zealand_emperor_penguin">penguin</a> apparently got lost while swimming near Antarctica and ended up 2,000 miles away on a New Zealand beach.</p> <p> The is the first time in 44 years one has been sighted in New Zealand in the wild, the Associated Press reports.</p> <p> Christine Wilton was walking her dog on the Peka Peka Beach Monday when she spotted the penguin, estimated to be about 10 months old.</p> <p> &quot;It was out-of-this-world to see it,&quot; she told the AP. &quot;Like someone just dropped it from the sky.&quot;</p> <p> Experts told the AP the Emperor penguin was probably born during the last Antarctic winter and was probably searching for squid and krill when it got lost in the water. They can spend months in the ocean at a time and come ashore to molt or rest.</p> <p> This penguin needs to get home if it is to survive.</p> <p> However, wildlife officials said Wednesday they will not bring the penguin back to Antarctica as it could bring infections with it, and there is no transport available.</p> <p> &quot;We are going to <a href="http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5h35KFZPHbDFBuqtvll3tnIBoSCTA?docId=5dd93c6c909b4daba498fb17b6c7bfb1">let nature take its course</a>,&quot; Peter Simpson, a program manager for New Zealand&#39;s Department of Conservation, told the AP. &quot;It roamed here naturally. What is wrong with that?&quot;</p> <p> He said there is a chance the bird will go back on its own as it becomes hungry.</p> <p> ABC News reports that the bird has become an &quot;<a href="http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2011/s3250206.htm">instant hit</a>.&quot;</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penguin-lost-new-zealand" target="_blank">read more</a></p> New Zealand Asia-Pacific Offbeat Weird Wide Web Wed, 22 Jun 2011 07:09:00 +0000 News Desk 5652829 at http://www.globalpost.com Sex with American crocs threatens Cubans http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/cuban-crocodile-American-crocodile-mating-sex <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Interbreeding could decimate the charismatic, endangered Caribbean crocodile </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> David Case </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> There&#39;s no doubt about it: the Cuban crocodile is a special species. It&#39;s regarded as one of the most intelligent of the world&#39;s crocs. It&#39;s known for its leaping ability, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society: By thrusting its tail into the ground, the eight foot reptile can jump up to low tree branches and gulp down small animals. While it tends to be highly aggressive, it doesn&#39;t generally attack humans.</p> <p> It&#39;s also among the world&#39;s most critically endangered species. It numbers in the low thousands, concentrated mainly in the Zapata Swamp, near Cuba&#39;s Bay of Pigs.</p> <p> Beginning in the mid-19th century through the 1960s, widespread hunting for their skins and meat decimated populations of this &quot;charismatic croc,&quot; as WCS calls it. It has also suffered from habitat loss.</p> <p> But scientists have just discovered that this uncommon swamp monster faces a new threat that may outrage the likes of Fidel Castro and other Cuban nationalists: it&#39;s interbreeding with the &quot;ubiquitous&quot; American crocodile.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/cuban-crocodile-American-crocodile-mating-sex" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Weird Wide Web Wed, 22 Jun 2011 19:57:00 +0000 David Case 5653031 at http://www.globalpost.com Scientists name mushroom after SpongeBob SquarePants http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/science-news-spongebob-squarepants-mushroom-borneo <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Spongiforma squarepantsii grows in Borneo, looks like a sponge and has a fruity smell. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> Scientists have discovered a new species of mushroom in the humid forests of Borneo &mdash; and named it after <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-13874049">SpongeBob SquarePants</a>, the children&rsquo;s TV cartoon character, because of its sponge-like appearance.</p> <p> Researchers from San Francisco State University found the fungus, which they named Spongiforma squarepantsii, during a 2010 expedition in Sarawak on Borneo, according to a scientific paper recently published in the journal Mycologia.</p> <p> The <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-13874049">SpongeBob SquarePants mushroom</a> is shaped like a sponge and has a fruity smell. Its spore-producing area looks like a seafloor carpeted in tube sponges when viewed up close, further convincing the researchers to name it after the cartoon character, the BBC says.</p> <p> &quot;It&#39;s just like a sponge with these big hollow holes,&quot; Professor Dennis E Desjardin, a co-author of the paper, told <a href="http://www.livescience.com/14626-spongebob-mushroom-species-fungus.html">LiveScience</a>. &quot;When it&#39;s wet and moist and fresh, you can wring water out of it and it will spring back to its original size. Most mushrooms don&rsquo;t do that.&quot;</p> <p> According to Desjardin, the editors at Mycologia at first rejected the cartoon name as &ldquo;too frivolous.&rdquo;</p> <p> &ldquo;But we insisted that although the science might be their business, we could name it whatever we liked,&rdquo; he told the Scripps Howard News Service. &ldquo;We need a little frivolity in this stodgy old science we love.&rdquo;</p> <p> <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/news/nation/6071333-418/scientists-discover-new-spongebob-squarepants-mushroom.html">SpongeBob SquarePants</a> is an American animated TV series, popular among children, that features a character shaped like a sponge and wearing a short pair of square brown pants.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/science-news-spongebob-squarepants-mushroom-borneo" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Entertainment Asia-Pacific Offbeat Science Weird Wide Web Wed, 22 Jun 2011 22:39:00 +0000 News Desk 5653071 at http://www.globalpost.com John Galliano says he doesn't remember http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/john-galliano-talks-addiction-explain-anti-semitic-rant-p <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The 50-year-old fashion designer said he didn't remember using any alleged anti-Semitic slurs at a Paris bar because of an addiction to pills and alcohol </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> The fashion designer John Galliano testified in a Paris courtroom on Wednesday that he didn&#39;t <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-galliano-trial-20110623,0,4433570.story">remember</a> using any alleged anti-Semitic slurs on two separate occasions at a Paris bar because of an addiction to pills and alcohol, according to the Los Angeles Times.&nbsp;</p> <p> Galliano apologized for an anti-Semitic rant in a <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110622/ap_en_ot/eu_france_galliano_trial">separate incident</a> that was caught on video, posted on the Internet and shown to the court, and said those were not his views, according to the Associated Press.</p> <p> The trial included the undated video of the 50-year-old designer that popped up on the Internet after a complaint was filed in February, in which the designer said, &quot;I love Hitler,&quot; and told someone that &quot;people like you would be dead.&quot; Galliano said that he didn&#39;t recognize the person he saw on camera, the Los Angeles Times said:</p> <p class="rteindent1"> <span style="background-color:#d3d3d3;">&quot;I&#39;m apologizing because that man you see up there is not John Galliano. I have no recollection of these events,&quot; he said. &quot;I read about them afterwards.&quot;</span></p> <p> &nbsp;The charges that the outspoken British designer insulted several patrons of the La Perle bar in the trendy Marais district of Paris with anti-Semitic remarks shocked the fashion world and cost Galliano his job at the French high-fashion house of Dior, the Associated Press said.</p> <p> He is accused of the crime of making insults about religion, race or ethnicity in public.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/john-galliano-talks-addiction-explain-anti-semitic-rant-p" target="_blank">read more</a></p> fashion France Europe Culture & Lifestyle Weird Wide Web Thu, 23 Jun 2011 05:12:20 +0000 News Desk 5653119 at http://www.globalpost.com Husband attacks wife with pet poodle in Brazil http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/que-pasa/poodle-wife-brazil <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The 4-pound dog died. The wife suffered minor bruises. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Stephanie Garlow </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> A husband suspects his wife is having an affair and gets angry.&nbsp;Typical story, right?</p> <p> Not this time. Rather than storming out of the house or slamming doors, the huband hits his wife ... with a poodle. Yes a poodle.</p> <p> Police in southern Brazil say the man picked up the dog and swung it into his wife&#39;s head twice, <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/americas/brazil-police-say-jealous-husband-hit-wife-with-pet-poodle-may-face-charges/2011/06/22/AGnAZ3fH_story.html">reports the Associated Press</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p> The 4-pound dog died. The wife suffered only minor bruises.</p> <p> As of Wednesday, the man had not been arrested, but police were urging&nbsp;prosecutors to charge him with assault and battery and cruelty to animals, according to the AP.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/que-pasa/poodle-wife-brazil" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Brazil BRIC Yard Que pasa Weird Wide Web Thu, 23 Jun 2011 16:32:00 +0000 Stephanie Garlow 5653219 at http://www.globalpost.com Cross-dressing business traveler a YouTube hit (VIDEO) http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/cross-dressing-flights-us-airlines-business-traveler-vide <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> "Howard" may fly in spandex tights and heels, but always respectfully. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Freya Petersen </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> A cross-dresser who regularly boards planes dressed only in women&rsquo;s underwear and heels says he does it to make business travel more fun.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> &quot;Howard&quot; &mdash; 65-year-old Phoenix man &mdash; has been filmed and photographed preparing to board planes dressed variously in spandex tights and matching midriff top, and women&rsquo;s underwear and heels.</p> <p> <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/zNtBRSOnxRw" width="425"></iframe></p> <p> He&#39;s even agreed to interviews, provided that his full name not be published, professing that no matter where his wardrobe takes him, he strives to be considerate to fellow passengers.</p> <p> &quot;It has never been my intent to put people in a situation where they feel uncomfortable,&quot; Howard told the San Francisco Chronicle. &quot;I try to respect other people&rsquo;s opinions. As long as my dress is not indecent from a legal perspective, and so long as the airline does not object, I have the right to wear what I wear. And others have the right to wear what they want to wear.&quot;</p> <p> He told the Chronicle that, as a business consultant, he had &quot;a lot at stake&quot; and his identity being revealed could discredit him in his field.</p> <p> &quot;This is just something I do for fun. I don&rsquo;t mean any harm,&quot; he said.</p> <p> Howard first made headlines worldwide &mdash; he&#39;s called the <a href="http://www.smh.com.au/travel/travel-news/i-do-it-for-fun-crossdressing-business-travellers-motive-20110623-1gh1b.html">cross-dressing business traveler</a> in one Australian article &mdash; after fellow passenger Jill Tarlow snapped Howard&rsquo;s photo before a June 9 flight from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to Phoenix as he prepared to board wearing <a href="http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/06/22/BAH01K1EK2.DTL">blue underwear</a>, heels and black stockings.</p> <p> The reaction of other passengers varies, with one YouTube video posted under the title &lsquo;&lsquo;Creepy Cross-Dressing Middle-Aged Spandex Man.&quot;</p> <p> <iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/KHijOvU2MUY" width="425"></iframe></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/cross-dressing-flights-us-airlines-business-traveler-vide" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Travel/Tourism Americas Offbeat Weird Wide Web Thu, 23 Jun 2011 18:04:00 +0000 Freya Petersen 5653262 at http://www.globalpost.com Woman wakes up at own funeral, immediately dies of shock http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/russia-funeral-weird-wacky-brain-dead-shock <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> A Russian woman woke up at her own funeral — and promptly died of a heart attack caused brought on by shock. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> A Russian woman woke up to discover she had been declared dead and was being prepared for burial &mdash; and promptly died of a heart attack brought on by the shock.</p> <p> Fagilyu Mukhametzyanov, 49, had been declared brain dead by doctors, but as mourning relatives filed past her open coffin, saying prayers for her soul to be taken up to <a href="http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2007356/Woman-dies-heart-attack-caused-shock-waking-OWN-funeral.html#ixzz1Q7mIYeN4">heaven</a>, she suddenly woke up and started screaming, the Daily Mail reports.</p> <p> Only 48 hours after her husband, Fagili, had been told his wife had died of a heart attack when she collapsed at their home in Kazan suffering from chest pains.</p> <p> After her unexpected revival &mdash; and subsequent <a href="http://www.express.co.uk/posts/view/254528/Woman-dies-of-shock-at-own-funeral">death</a> &mdash; the Express reports Fagili Mukhametzyanov, 51, as saying:</p> <p class="rteindent1"> <span style="background-color: rgb(211, 211, 211);">&quot;Her eyes were moving and we immediately rushed her back to the hospital.</span></p> <p class="rteindent1"> <span style="background-color: rgb(211, 211, 211);">&quot;But she only lived for another 12 minutes in intensive care before she died again, this time for good. </span></p> <p class="rteindent1"> <span style="background-color: rgb(211, 211, 211);">&quot;I am very angry and want answers. She wasn&rsquo;t dead when they said she was and they could have saved her.&quot;</span></p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/russia-funeral-weird-wacky-brain-dead-shock" target="_blank">read more</a></p> World Religion Russia Health Weird Wide Web Thu, 23 Jun 2011 20:27:00 +0000 News Desk 5653284 at http://www.globalpost.com Penguin stranded in New Zealand taken to hospital http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penguin-new-zealand-hospital <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Health officials take a young penguin lost in New Zealand to the hospital. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><style type="text/css"> div.leadphoto { display:none; }</style><p> A lost <a href="http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/asia-pacific/stranded-penguin-moved-to-new-zealand-zoo-over-health-fears/article2073843/">penguin</a> that ended up in New Zealand has had possible health problems and has reportedly been taken to a local zoo.</p> <p> Veterinarians and conservation officials became concerned with the penguin&#39;s health after seeing it eat sand and small sticks of driftwood, the Globe and Mail reports. The penguin became lethargic, and health officials worried it would die if they did not intervene.</p> <p> &quot;It was eating <a href="http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5g1bjunBs5p7LTSC2MIBqR1mxjoww?docId=CNG.b26a888f0db4e09e044a71eb4ffa05dd.281">sand and small sticks</a>, it was standing up than lying down and attempting to regurgitate the sand,&quot; Department of Conservation (DOC) spokesman Peter Simpson told AFP.</p> <p> &quot;We had the vets and an expert from Massey (University) examine it and we&#39;ve decided to take it to Wellington Zoo to see if we can find out what&#39;s wrong with it.&quot;</p> <p> The young penguin was first spotted on New Zealand&#39;s <a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penguin-lost-new-zealand">Peka Peka Beach</a> on Monday. Health and environment officials suspect that the penguin went looking for food in Antarctica, got lost and ended up swimming an extra 2,000 miles until it landed in New Zealand.</p> <p> The penguin, estimated to be 10 months old, became an &quot;instant hit&quot; in New Zealand, ABC News reported. New Zealand&#39;s Department of Conservation had to focus on crowd control at the beach to keep the penguin safe from onlookers.</p> <p> Colin Miskelly, a curator at Te Papa, the Museum of New Zealand, told the Globe and Mail that the penguin might mistake the sand for ice and eat it for hydration. However, he did not know why the bird would eat wood.</p> <p> Miskelly said zoo experts were considering putting the penguin on an intravenous drip to nurse it back to health. They hope to then release the bird into the wild as there are no facilities in New Zealand that can house an Emperor penguin long-term.</p> <p> Wildlife officials said Wednesday they will not bring the penguin back to Antarctica as it could bring infections with it, and there is no transport available.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/penguin-new-zealand-hospital" target="_blank">read more</a></p> New Zealand Asia-Pacific Offbeat Weird Wide Web Fri, 24 Jun 2011 06:32:00 +0000 News Desk 5654181 at http://www.globalpost.com Genetically modified pot a license to print money for Colombian farmers http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/marijuana-pot-genetically-modified-drugs-colombia <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Genetically modified pot seeds from Amsterdam grown on pot farms and in greenhouses in Colombia is fetching 10 times the price of regular marijuana. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Freya Petersen </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> Genetically modified marijuana is reportedly a hit with Colombian farmers who say the &quot;enhanced&quot; plants are &quot;more powerful and profitable,&quot; according to Agence France-Presse.</p> <p> With varietal names like &quot;creepy,&quot; who can doubt them?</p> <p> Local authorities said the arrival of genetically modified seeds from Europe and the United States have allowed &quot;a bigger production and better quality at the same time.&quot;</p> <p> The head of one farm told AFP that a genetically modified variety known in Europe as &quot;<a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110624/lf_afp/colombiacrimedrugbiotech;_ylt=As2ZsCGkH5ZwCSQJUIQ7245n.3QA;_ylu=X3oDMTNqcWwzM252BGFzc2V0A2FmcC8yMDExMDYyNC9jb2xvbWJpYWNyaW1lZHJ1Z2Jpb3RlY2gEY2NvZGUDdG9wZ21wdG9wMjAwcG9vbARjcG9zAzYEcG9zAzYEc2VjA3luX3RvcF9zdG9yaWVzBHNsawNnbW1hcmlqdWFuYXA-">La Cominera</a>,&quot; from a seed modified in The Netherlands, is sold for about 10 times the rate for &quot;normal&quot; marijuana.</p> <p> <a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/benelux/110623/amsterdam-coffee-shops-marijuana-cannabis">GlobalPost reports from Amsterdam: Amsterdam fights for your right to smoke pot</a></p> <p> Colombian authorities said the arrival of genetically modified seeds from Europe and the United States have allowed &quot;a bigger</p> <p> One owner of a greenhouse an hour&#39;s drive from the city of Cali, said she can sell the modified marijuana for 100,000 pesos ($54) a kilo (2.2 pounds), which is nearly 10 times more than the price she can get for ordinary marijuana.</p> <p> &quot;<a href="http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20110624/lf_afp/colombiacrimedrugbiotech;_ylt=As2ZsCGkH5ZwCSQJUIQ7245n.3QA;_ylu=X3oDMTNqcWwzM252BGFzc2V0A2FmcC8yMDExMDYyNC9jb2xvbWJpYWNyaW1lZHJ1Z2Jpb3RlY2gEY2NvZGUDdG9wZ21wdG9wMjAwcG9vbARjcG9zAzYEcG9zAzYEc2VjA3luX3RvcF9zdG9yaWVzBHNsawNnbW1hcmlqdWFuYXA-">La Cominera</a>,&quot; is named for the Colombian village where it grows.</p> <p class="rteindent1"> <span style="background-color: rgb(211, 211, 211);">La Cominera&#39;s&quot; higher value is due to its increased concentration of THC, the plant&#39;s principal active ingredient, and the modified plant verges on an 18 percent concentration level, compared to a normal marijuana plant&#39;s 2 to 7 percent, said the researcher.</span></p> <p> Another farmer tells AFP: &quot;I don&#39;t like growing marijuana, but it ended up that way. I received a loan to grow coffee, but I was drowning and I had to sell my harvest very cheap. My sister told me it would be better to plant marijuana.&quot;</p> <p> Residents of Cali say they cannot sustain themselves on coffee and banana crops alone, because of price fluctuations and the difficulties in reaching markets in time, due to a poor road network.</p> <p> Police commander Rodriguez said the GM crop&#39;s growth poses a problem for local law enforcement, because profits are often used to finance other criminal activity.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/marijuana-pot-genetically-modified-drugs-colombia" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Drugs Mexico Drug War Colombia Weird Wide Web Fri, 24 Jun 2011 15:17:00 +0000 Freya Petersen 5655053 at http://www.globalpost.com At Glastonbury gig, U2 faces protest over dodging Irish taxes http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/u2-plays-glastonbury-festival-protesters-taxes <div class="field field-type-text field-field-subhead"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Art Uncut activists bring huge balloon to muddy music event, saying "U Pay Your Tax 2," but they are tackled and scuffles break out </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-byline1"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> News Desk </div> </div> </div> <!--paging_filter--><p> Ireland&#39;s most-successful band U2 and its frontman Bono were accused of <a href="http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/violence-erupts-as-u2-rocks-glastonbury-20110625-1gkbg.html">dodging taxes</a> in their home country by protesters at the group&#39;s first performance at England&#39;s Glastonbury Festival, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.</p> <p> As Bono and his bandmates took to the Pyramid Stage at the huge, muddy outdoor <a href="http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/Showbiz-News/Glastonbury-U2-Tax-Demo-Threatened-By-Activists-Art-Uncut-Telling-Bono-To-Pay-Up/Article/201106416017864?lpos=Showbiz_News_First_Media_Article_Teaser_Region__0&amp;lid=ARTICLE_16017864_Glastonbury_U2_Tax_Demo_Threatened_By_Activists_Art_Uncut_Telling_Bono_To_Pay_Up">music festival</a>, activists from the direct action group Art Uncut inflated a 20-foot balloon emblazoned with the message &ldquo;U Pay Your Tax 2,&quot; Sky News reported.</p> <p> As the activists tried to release the <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/glastonbury/8598100/Violent-scenes-break-out-in-the-crowd-at-U2s-long-awaited-Glastonbury-debut.html">balloon</a> over the crowd of about 50,000, security personnel wrestled them to the ground and deflated the balloon, sparking angry clashes with about 30 protesters, with several of them pinned against a fence near the stage, according to the Telegraph. There were no arrests.</p> <p> One of the Art Uncut group members said: &ldquo;That was totally over the top. He threatened to hit me.&rdquo;</p> <p> U2 was criticized in 2006 when the band reportedly shifted most of its <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/europe/06/24/uk.u2.tax.protest/">business affairs</a> from Ireland to the Netherlands, where royalties on music incur virtually no tax, after the Irish government cut tax breaks for income earned from &quot;works of artistic merit,&quot; CNN reported.</p> <p> Bono, guitarist The Edge, bass player Adam Clayton and drummer Larry Mullen are among Ireland&#39;s wealthiest residents, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. Forbes magazine estimated the band earned $195 million last year.</p> <p> Art Uncut says that while Bono campaigns against poverty in the developing world, his very wealthy group has run out on paying Irish taxes at a time when the country desperately needs the money. Ireland, which has received an international bailout, is dealing with difficult spending cuts, tax increases and unemployment as it tries to pull its debt-burdened economy out of danger of bankruptcy.</p> <p><a href="http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/weird-wide-web/u2-plays-glastonbury-festival-protesters-taxes" target="_blank">read more</a></p> Ireland Music United Kingdom Entertainment Europe Culture & Lifestyle Ireland United Kingdom Weird Wide Web Sat, 25 Jun 2011 05:03:38 +0000 News Desk 5655106 at http://www.globalpost.com