Thursday, January 31, 2008

Bottom of the News… Friday, February 1, 2008

Good morning my fellow Rotarians… Well, let me be the first to say happy February 1st to ya! Welcome to the month of LOVE… More on that later. So let’s jump right in to some bottom stories…

Cow falls 200 feet, lands on minivan's hood!

MANSON, IA -- A cow fell about 200 feet off a cliff on a Sunday afternoon and landed on the hood of a minivan passing by Rocky Point about one mile east of Manson.

Charles Everson Jr. and his wife Linda escaped injury. "It was just 'bam'-- you just saw something come down and hit the hood," said Mr. Everson. He and his wife were in the area from the Detroit area, to celebrate their one-year anniversary, he said. They were on Highway 150 headed back to their hotel after attending a church service.

Everson, 49, said he didn't actually see the animal until it hit -- and didn't realize what had happened until after the impact. "I'm like, 'I don't believe this. I don't believe this. I don't believe this,' “Everson said, adding he repeated the phrase "about 20 times."

According to Arnold Baker, Chelan County Fire Chief, the cow was a heifer estimated to weigh about 600 pounds and he was one year old.

“What is funny, but not really,” said Baker, “is that it was such a close call. Inches different and the couple in this car would have been killed.”

The fire chief found it interesting that the Eversons did not stop right away when the cow hit them, but drove about another mile after the collision before pulling over, and were then they taken to Lake Chelan Community Hospital as a precaution. The van… well, just imagine the force of a 600 pound cow hitting your car from 200 feel in the air. It was totaled.

Forget the fire department. And don't call NASA in Urbandale…

A rocket, and the flames that spit inside it, is supposed to be on the roof of Urbandale High School. Of course some of the neighbors did not know that when they started calling 911.

The "rocket" is a portable heater that protects paint and drywall from cold weather during a construction project. Workers for the contractor noticed the device's resemblance to a rocket, so they decided to take the joke one step further with space-age fins and NASA logos. The result was a goof on the roof.

"It's a Saturn VII, can't you read?" said John Lees, the super visor for maintenance and construction. Unfortunately, many of the neighbors did not know that Lees was joking when he suggested that federal space officials should be called to see if they had lost something important.

The explanation is, well, "not rocket science," John Lees. The flames inside the heater put off an orange glow that faces the houses to the north of the school. That sparked the 911 call, fire officials said.

Neighbors can rest assured, Lees said, because the heater has an automatic shutoff. There's no danger of a fire -- or a visit from NASA officials.

Midgets in suitcases rifling bus travelers' bags

From London's Telegraph comes this weird crime story. Criminal gangs are using midgets in a ruse to steal from the luggage holds of buses on long-distance trips by hiding them inside suitcases, according to police.

The bizarre crime is on the rise in Sweden and officers say thieves have gotten away with thousands of pounds in cash, jewelry and other valuables in recent months.
Gangs are said to sneak the midgets into the luggage hold, hidden inside baggage. Then, once the journey has begun, the stowaways are free to rifle through the bags of other passengers without fear of being apprehended.

Before the bus arrives at its destination the midgets take their loot back into their suitcase, zip themselves inside and wait to be collected by their partners in crime.

And that is the latest from the strange, the weird and the wacky bottom of the news on this Friday February 1, 2008.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Bottom of the News… Friday, January 25, 2008

Good morning my fellow Rotarians… Well, at the end of year there a all kinds of Top 10 lists and today I thought I’d share some of the top oddball stories from 2007.

A Major Head Case In Germany… Margret Wegner underwent surgery to remove a pencil that had been stuck inside her head for 55 years. The German woman had suffered from chronic headaches and nosebleeds after falling at age 4 with a 4” pencil in hand. For years doctors would not take the risk to remove it until technology improved and this summer surgeons in Berlin finally were able to remove the pencil.

A Need for Bigger Buoys? In Australia… Some women in the Australian Navy received free breast implants this past year paid for by their government. The Navy said the cosmetic surgeries were carried out for psychological reasons for female sailors. Politicians were up in arms over taxpayers footing the bill calling the government-funded breast enhancements a "questionable practice."

Managing Road RageIn Rome… The Vatican issued their 10 Commandments to help drivers manage road rage in a 36-page document titled "Guidelines for the Pastoral Care of the Road." Stating that driving brings out the "primitive" side of man and cars creating "occasions of sin." The guidelines stressed the importance of respecting speed limits and not using cell phones while driving. However they also encourage praying while driving, which some argued could be an even bigger distraction than cell phone usage.

Sleepwalking in the Buff In the UK… The Travellodge hotel chain Travelodge a seven-fold increase in sleepwalking from 2006 to 2007. They noted that 95% of the walkers were naked men. As a result, the hotel re-issued its annual sleepwalker guidelines to help hotel staff better handle the walkers. To begin, they kept towels behind the desk so men could cover up and protect their dignity.

No Ho Ho Ho’s!In Australia… Santas in Australia were told to stop saying "ho ho ho" and to use "ha ha ha" instead. The traditional phrase was banned because it might be offensive to women. The Aussie Santa training center maintains that it was only a suggestion, and that the greeting was left up to the discretion of each Santa.

A Synonym for Streetwalker In London… British legislators removed the word "prostitute" from criminal statutes, a term that had been around for 180 or so years. The Justice Ministry argued that the word carries too much social stigma. The new phrase will be… “persons who sell sex persistently," which is defined as twice or more within a three-month period of time.

Wee Wii Competion is Fatal In California… A radio station water-drinking contest ended in tragedy in January with Jennifer Strange, age 28, died from drinking too much water. The grand prize was a Nintendo Wii. It was part of a contest entitled "Hold Your Wee for a Wii."

And those were to top strange, weird and oddball stories of 2007 as a part of today’s bottom of the news on this Friday January 25, 2008.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Bottom of the News… Friday, January 18, 2008

“Remembering My Dad, Stan Drewelow”

Good morning my fellow Rotarians… It is good to be back and I must tell you how much I appreciate your prayers, notes and messages of encouragement over the past few weeks.

My dad, Stan Drewelow, went home on January 8th. He battled his last couple of weeks in the final stages of leukemia and his final passing was a blessing for all of us, especially my Mom. This has been a sad/glad time for my family and, at my dad’s insistence; we celebrated his life. We laughed and we cried and it was a precious and wonderful time with family and friends.

So, if you don’t mind, I want to share a couple of things that always amazed me about my dad…

First, in 1980, at the age of 48 he discovered computer programming. He starting reading and taking classes to teach himself about mainframe languages and eventually became a programmer, an analyst, a web designer and he was a code writer for Y2K work.

This became his passion and he earned the nickname of the “Wizard” from his colleagues at MCI, National Computer Systems and ACT. Guys half his age with MIS degrees would recruit him to be their trouble shooter on their team because he had a knack of figuring things out. His work spanned the globe and with a Google search his name can be found on many websites in several countries. As I have seen from many emails and calls, his work and passion impacted people around the world.

Second, my Dad was an eternal optimist (sometimes unrealistically so according to my mom) and he always gave people the benefit of the doubt (except for us kids, of which we had 8!). He loved people and this really hit home for me when I was preparing my thoughts to share at his service. In looking through his computer one of his last emails was to a friend and it said this… “It’s not what you write on your tombstone, but rather what you write on someone’s heart.”

Okay, the last thing I want to share about my dad is that he loved to eat and all the holiday food was a thrill and yet a challenge for him, as it is for many of us. He also knew about my Bottom of the News duties and he would send me things. In early December he sent me a poem entitled “The Week After the Holidays” and I’m sure you will recognize the theme…

'Twas the week after the holidays, and all through the house,nothing would fit me, not even a blouse.The cookies I'd nibble, the eggnog I'd taste,all the holiday parties had gone to my waist.
When I got on the scales, there arose such a number!

When I walked to the store (less a walk than a lumber). I remembered the marvelous meals I prepared...The gravies and sauces and beef nicely rared.

The wine and the rum balls, the bread and the cheese,and the way I never never said, "No thank you, please."

As I dressed myself in my husband's old shirt,and prepared once again to battle the dirt.
I said to myself, as I only can, "You can't spend a winter dressed like a man!"

So away with the last of the sour cream dip,get rid of the fruit cake, every cracker and chip.
Every last bit of food that I like must be banished,until all the additional ounces have vanished!

I won't have a cookie, not even a lick.I'll want only to chew on a long celery stick, not!
I won't have hot biscuits, or cornbread, or pie.I'll munch on a carrot -- and quietly cry.

I'm hungry, I'm lonesome, and life is a bore,but isn't that what January is for?
Unable to giggle, no longer a riot, Happy New Year to all and to all a good diet!

Well, I can’t really call this the Bottom of the News, but I do appreciate the time to share about my Dad on this Friday, January 18, 2008. Thank you!

Friday, January 04, 2008

Bottom of the News… Friday, January 4, 2008

Good morning my fellow Rotarians… Happy New Year and welcome to the first edition of the Bottom of the News for 2008!

Vince Hogg, 45, and Beverley Burns, 42, are notorious in Fife Scotland for their regular “domestic battles” according to a recent report from the local court. In their latest skirmish, Hogg pulled Burns' hair and threw her against a wall.

The prosecutor reported that… "He was angry about the fact a shower was leaking and caused a carpet to get wet,” Hogg pled guilty and got probation rather than jail.

But the prosecutor also told the court that Hogg has to deal with “serious consequences because of his line of work." Hogg has worked for the National Health Service for 27 years, and is "heavily involved" in the Zero Tolerance Campaign Against Domestic Violence. And recently he was promoted to the position of anger management counselor, but that promotion was rescinded after his arrest.

Hogg was suspended temporarily with full pay while he serves out his probation, however, he will return to work at NHS. The judge in the case was concerned that Hogg was taking advantage of the loopholes in "Zero Tolerance" policy and that he did not practice what he taught to kids and adults in his work. It appeared that Hogg, as the maker of rules, did not follow his owning teachings.

To cut down on shoplifting in stores, police in Derbyshire, England, have been providing shops with life-sized cardboard cutouts of one of their active-duty policemen that can be on display in the stores.

Anna Gaskell recently picked up 10 cutouts of herself and said "They're very realistic and looking at ten of me was surreal," she said. The program has been a success, with dramatic reductions in shoplifting in stores where the cutouts are set up, conspicuously watching over shoppers.

There was one notable failure in one shop, however; in the town of Belper, a shop had its cardboard cutout stolen – it was the cardboard cutout of a police dog chasing a suspected robber!
When the Anchorage Inn in Rouses Point, N.Y., caught fire, the small town at the extreme north tip of the state called for help from neighboring fire departments. The town of Lacolle, which is located right across the border in Canada (just 8 miles away), sent an engine, but it was stopped at the border by a U.S. Customs official.

"I've been crossing this border for 30 years, and the only question we were ever asked was, ‘Where's the fire?’” said Lacolle fire Chief Jean-Pierre Hebert. This time, however, the firefighters were delayed for as long as 15 minutes while they explained why they didn't have their passports in their bunker gear.

"When you're answering a call at midnight, all you think about is putting on your pants," Hebert said. "You don't think about taking your wallet." Two other trucks behind them, also running with lights and sirens, were also delayed.

Hebert said American authorities promised the "isolated incident" would not be repeated. Too late for the restaurant… it burnt to the ground. One local authority commented that the fire probably did more damage that any fire truck-borne terrorists could have accomplished.

And this is the bottom of the news on this Friday January 4, 2008.