Wonky Word – October

NY Bed Bugs Bite
They always said it was the ‘town that never sleeps,’ and now we know why! There has been a huge increase in the bed bug population, which is causing the city lots of problems.

City-Council Speaker, Christine Quinn, and Deputy Mayor, Linda Gibbs, are – in the time honoured US tradition – throwing big bucks at the problem to try and solve this itchy issue, in the form of 500,000 dollars, an educational campaign, better coordinated efforts by city agencies, a health department, bed-bug task force, and even a bed-bug web portal.

“The website will provide accurate and targeted information for New Yorkers affected by bed bugs,” Quinn said at a press conference on the steps of City Hall. She went on to explain that the site will “explain how to prevent and treat an infestation, and what to look for in an exterminator and how to safely dispose of infected items.”

The bed-bug cash was allocated on the recommendation of the New NYC Bed-Bug Advisory Board (you’ve got to love those Americans and their boards), made up of industry experts, entomologists, advocates and representatives from city agencies.

Jokes aside, New York is truly suffering with this problem, with infestation reports rising year upon year, affecting apartments, retail stores, schools and hospitals.

Despite the name, bed bugs don’t always live in beds, preferring the dark security of spaces behind headboards, under baseboards and even behind hanging pictures. They are parasites that feed on human blood, and their bites leave red and itchy welts.

Wong Name
The Chinese News Service published this story recently, which tells of a family with over 200 members who all had to change their name, because the original was so rare that the country’s computer systems did not recognise it, or, more to the point, didn’t recognise the character used to write the name.

The name is a variant on the surname Shan, and is only used by one family in the eastern province of Shandong, and because the name was so rare, it was never assigned a code in the country’s computer system, and when family members tried to get a driver’s licence or bank deposit book, the items could not be printed, because there was not character in he computer to print in the name section of the documents.

Agreement was reached between the family and government officials (not sure what exactly ‘agreement’ means) and the entire family have changed their surname to two variants of Xian, both of which are pronounced the same way but are written using different characters.

Older members of the family are mourning the loss of their ancestral name. “Our generation will remember what our original surname was, but the children will not,” said one family member.

Touchy Ducky
Has the world gone quackers? Donald Duck the sex pest! Well, according to April Magolon, Donald copped a feel of her breast when she stood beside him for a photo.

Whilst trying not to pre-judge Ms. Money-Grabbing Magolon, the wording of the complaint does lead one to believe that she may have perhaps made the claims in the hope of getting a bit of money out of good old Disney.

The suit states that she has suffered ‘severe physical injury, emotional anguish and distress including, but not limited to post-traumatic stress disorder,’ all as a result of her meeting with the fruity, feathered fondler. She is therefore demanding in excess of 50,000 dollars in damages.

Reading the wording of that complaint and the degree of injury she alleges she has suffered, it would seem she has possibly spent six months in Afghanistan rather than a day in Florida.

Surely, even in ‘claim-happy’ America this will be thrown out of court, and Ms. Magolon told to take her claim, and her breasts, elsewhere in the hope of making a quick buck, which could eventually lead to Disney no longer allowing people to get too close during photo opportunities.

I’m glad that article is finished… I felt a right tit writing about such trivia! (Mental note: Dave fondles his starboard pectoral as a writing aid – Ed)

Foul Play!
This is the alleged story about a football Referee in Brazil, who allegedly stabbed a player to death during a match in Barreira, located in Ceara state. The use of the word ‘allegedly’ twice in the last sentence is because there are some reports that this story is in fact a ‘blog inspired’ hoax.
Whatever… a crazy stabbing story is always worth stretch the truth a little, so here goes.

Apparently, Francisco Chaves was refereeing a match when he was attacked by a player, Francisco da Silva, who was incensed by the award of a foul against the visiting Boa-Fe team, so he kicked Mr. Chaves who, this being Brazil, pulled out a knife.

At this point, Francisco’s brother, Jose da Silva, playing alongside his brother, went to help his brother, and rather than a straight red card, the referee stabbed him in the chest, killing him on the spot (That’s the sort of referee that was needed in the Spain-Netherlands final, damn it! – Ed).

Francisco was hospitalised with minor chest injuries and police are still looking for Mr. Chaves, who didn’t hang around for the ‘end of match’ handshakes etc.
All we can take from this story is that football in Brazil must be a bloody rough affair if the referees are going into the games ‘tooled up.’

Flood Fraud
We sometimes make vociferous complaints about local town halls here on the Costa Tropical, however; perhaps we should look across the ‘pond’ at northeast Brazil, where a mayor is under investigation for declaring floods that never happened, all to claim one million dollars in emergency aid.

Mayor Ademar Pinto Rosa of Guaratinga came to grief when the Brazilian state prosecutor’s office discovered that the national weather service had no records of floods on June the 15th and 16th. In fact, they had no record of any rainfall at all on either of the days.

The man who is out to pin the Mayor’s testicles to a wall is the investigating prosecutor, Bruno Contijo Teixeira, and he told a news website that he found it ‘bizarre’ that Pinto Rosa had declared that his town had been ravaged by heavy rains, flooding and mudslides that destroyed ten houses and two local bridges.

“The rains never existed. It was all a lie,” Gontijo said.
Should the claim-happy Mayor be found guilty of fraud, he will have to reimburse the state funds already paid out and may well be sacked.

Doctor Disgrace
The Ed saw this one and he sent it to me with a covering note saying, “this one really takes the biscuit!”

This tragic and unbelievable story comes from Sicily, where Laura Salpietro, 30, was trying to give birth to a son. Two doctors attending her at the birth had a disagreement about whether to perform a caesarean section; an argument which became so heated that the two ‘professionals’ came to blows in the delivery room. As a result, the baby was born with suspected brain damage and Mrs. Salpietro needed emergency surgery to remove her uterus.

One of the doctors was Mrs. Salpietro’s private gynaecologist who looked after her during pregnancy and the other was the duty doctor at the hospital. However, prosecutors have placed five doctors under investigation, and Health Minister, Ferruccio Fazio, delivered a personal apology to Mrs. Salpietro and said, “I tried to give her words of hope, and above all, I tried to tell her that the government was with her and her family at this time.”

Although this is a horrific incident, this is only one of several medical blunders that are frequently reported in southern Italian hospitals.

And this little bunch of numbers will make you raise an eyebrow as well… some 38% of all births in Italy are done by section; more than twice the 15% recommended by the World Health Organisation. However, in Sicily, the average is 52%, and just to top the lot, Campania, the southern mainland region that includes Naples, sections run at 60%!
Why? (It’s Italy, Dave… popular Caesars always come to a sticky end there – Ed)

Porn Pens
Most children find their first day at school a little bit scary, so in Germany, to make the children feel a little bit happier, the tradition is to give them a cardboard cone full of sweets. However, schoolchildren in Essen were given pens to make them feel welcome. The only problem was that these particular pens had a small button, which when pressed, projected a pornographic image.

The incident occurred at the Adolf Reichwein School in the city and members of the German Communist Party, according to the headmaster, handed the pens to pupils. It wasn’t until the pens were taken home and angry parents discovered their ‘peculiarity’ and immediately complained to the headmaster.
The German Communist Party defended itself by saying it had purchased the pens from a discount store, and had only been told that they lit up at the push of a button.

“The German Communist Party deeply regrets what has happened and is outraged that this kind of thing can be purchased in normal shops,” it said. The Party also pointed out that it had instructed lawyers to look into the possibility of prosecuting the vendors.

The Party has also offered to exchange the pens for something more suitable for children. (A present from the Red’s ‘light’ district? – Ed)

Town Hall Arrested
Have we mentioned local politics in Brazil? Well, here we go again, with the arrest of just about all the local top officials in the Brazilian city of Dourados. The big bust included the Mayor, Ari Artuzi, his wife, deputy and 25 other officials all arrested on suspicion of fraud and corruption, which involves the running of a complex corruption racket. Of course, Mr. Artuzi’s and his dodgy associates reject all the charges.

In the meantime, a judge has been appointed to run the city of 200,000 people in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul.
The charges against the Artful Artuzi say that he and his collaborators took a 10% cut of all public work contracts and used the money for election campaigns and to bribe local politicians.

Among those arrested are the city’s councillors for finance and administration and a hospital director.

A spokesperson for the council explained that Dourados had been left in a state of limbo by the arrests.

Sharp Look
Have a look at this x-ray of a man who survived having an eight-inch knife lodged into his eye for twelve hours! Jader Torres Mota was stabbed in the head during an attempted mugging in the Columbian town of Oporapa.

The knife remained in place for so long as paramedics took him from hospital to hospital, looking for a surgeon who could remove the blade from his left eye. Surely phoning ahead would have been more efficient?

Despite the horrific injury, Mr. Mota survived, and twelve hours later, despite the knife piercing his skull, it was removed. Doctors said the blade was only millimetres from his brain, and although he did lose the sight of his left eye, he admitted he was lucky to be alive at all.

The 24-year-old Mr. Mota said he was leaving a party in Oporapa when robber, Mauricio Martinez, attacked him.
“He hit me in the face and I fled on my motorbike, it was only while I was riding away that I felt my face and thought, ‘my God what is this stuck in me?’”

“I’ve lost the sight of one eye but I’m just lucky to be alive,” he explained.

Martinez is now expecting to spend the next 15 years in prison for attempted murder. (Or he could become a Brazilian football referee… – Ed)

Flight Fury
A flight attendant working for the American airline JetBlue, allegedly lost his cool with his passengers, activated the emergency chute, grabbed a couple of beers and slid down to the tarmac.

The incident occurred at John F. Kennedy airport.
The JetBlue flight arrived at JFK from Pittsburgh and had taxied to a standstill at Terminal 5 at around noon, when flight attendant Steven Slater, 38, was hit in the head with luggage that a passenger was trying to get our of the overhead lockers, according to airport officials.

There was an exchange of words, at the end of which the passenger allegedly told Mr. Slater to ‘f**k off.’
Slater then allegedly got on the plane’s PA system and directed a tirade of obscenities at the passengers in general, but did explain he was mostly directing his words towards the passenger who had told him to go forth and multiply.

After this, Slater allegedly activated the plane’s inflatable chute, grabbed two beers from the galley area, and slid down the chute, ran across the tarmac into the terminal, straight to his car and home.

Slater was later arrested and taken into custody at the Port Authority Police station at JFK airport for questioning. Slater was said to be calm when arrested, and was charged with reckless endangerment and criminal mischief.

Let’s be honest… anyone who works with the general public does occasionally have these urges.

Shotgun Wedding?
Well, just to bring things up to date, we are in fact talking about a Kalashnikov assault rifle, or AK-47, which was used (accidentally) by the groom to kill three wedding guests and injure eight.

The wedding was taking place in a village called Akcagoze, in the province of Gaziantep in Turkey.

The young groom was trying to fire the weapon into the air, which is a traditional pastime at Turkish weddings, when he lost control of the weapon and fired a burst into the watching crowd.

As a result, he killed his father and two aunts and wounded eight other family members, including a young girl who is recovering in the hospital.

The groom was arrested, and an investigation has been launched… although living with his mistake will probably be punishment enough.

The Turkish shoot weapons into the air after sports victories, weddings and other occasions, and the practice often causes fatal accidents.

Dead Wong
A man called Kato was believed to be the oldest man in Tokyo, and at 111-years-old, he would have won this accolade hands down, had he not been dead for the last 30 years.

Suspicions arose when the old man’s granddaughter told a group of officials he “did not want to see anybody.” They explained that they were there only to pay tribute to him on his 111th birthday, but were brusquely told to leave.

Since that failure, there were several further attempts to meet with Kato, but each visit ended with the family forcing them to leave.

Finally, the authorities requested a police investigation, which didn’t take too long, as they simply bashed the door down. There on a bed, wearing pyjamas and covered with a blanket, was the mummified corpse that they believe is Kato.

The family tried to convince the police that the old man “had locked himself in the room for over 30 years, and had become a living Buddha.” However, the authorities soon saw through this when it was made known that the family had received 109,000 dollars in respect of his widowers pension.
“His family must have known that he was dead all these years and acted as if nothing had happened. It’s disgusting,” said Yutaka Muroi, social services official in the Japanese capital.

Drug Deal?
A judge in Chachapoyas, Peru has found himself in deep trouble after being spotted in a bar having a beer with the drug dealer he had just given a conditional discharge to in an extremely controversial decision.

Just to make matters worse for Judge, Edgar Quispe (Backhander) Gómez, he was actually filmed drinking with the suspect by the TV channel Panamericana, in the company of the dealer Teófilo Fernández Portocarrero and three others, including two policemen and the security chief of the prison, where the accused man was being detained. He certainly had some influential friends!
The conditional release ordered by the Judge had caused uproar in Chachapoyas, the capital of the Amazonas province of Peru, as the evidence against pot-pushing Portocarrero was described as ‘overwhelming.’
Since the incident was made public, the head of the Bureau of the Judiciary, Enrique Mendoza who said, “It’s a big disappointment when a judge who does not meet the standards of integrity required to handle a situation of this nature.”
Mendoza said that Gómez (dodgy) Quispe has been suspended and further enquiries are being made into the dealer and the decision.

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