The Widdershins

Archive for the ‘Odd News’ Category

Shinners, I am a curious person. I like finding out all the five W’s and H (Who, What, Where, When, Why and How) to learn more about a subject of interest. Like birds – I’ve spent a lot of time recently learning about them.

But damn, when your educational system prevents you from even knowing what you don’t know…neither curiosity nor all the will in the world will help.

I was never taught about the Tulsa Race Massacre in school. I guess whomever wrote the textbooks knew how much negative perception would go along with that knowledge – the deep-seated racism in this country, the pure evil of that mass murder, and the reality that would tarnish America’s well-crafted egalitarian image. It was only in the past year (I think it was on Rachel Maddow’s show?) that the veil of my ignorance was lifted. And for the first time, an American President has addressed it, on the shameful and tragic anniversary of its occurrence. Biden made a historic speech, in which his trademark empathy was on full display. But as we’ve started to see with Biden and Harris, words are just the beginning. And now, Biden is looking to begin to address some of the racial disparities that have been kept in public policy and hidden away from public view.

The Tulsa massacre has only recently entered the national discourse — and the presidential visit put an even brighter spotlight on the event.

Biden, who was joined by Housing Secretary Marcia Fudge and senior advisers Susan Rice and Cedric Richmond, also announced new measures he said could help narrow the wealth gap between races and reinvest in underserved communities by expanding access to homeownership and small-business ownership.

The White House said the administration will take steps to address disparities that result in Black-owned homes being appraised at tens of thousands of dollars less than comparable homes owned by white residents as well as issue new federal rules to fight housing discrimination. The administration is also setting a goal of increasing the share of federal contracts awarded to small disadvantaged businesses by 50% by 2026, funneling an estimated additional $100 billion to such businesses over the five-year period, according to the White House.

It is shocking to think that Black prosperity in Tulsa could have been extinguished so quickly. 30 blocks of “Black Wall Street” were destroyed, up to 300 Black Tulsans were killed, and the Greenwood area has never recovered, 100 years later. White people just couldn’t handle the fact that Black people clearly aren’t inferior – when they have equal opportunity, they are able to prosper – and so they made up some excuse about a black man stepping on a white woman’s foot to justify their murderous hatred. But really, they just wanted to stop Black Americans from prospering, and scare them into leaving all the money for white people.

The attempted coup on January 6th was the same type of rage. White men (mostly) are in a panic that when those uppity wimminz (especially Black women) gain power, their power diminishes; thus they decided to scream and attack and kill. Just as on that day in 1921 in Tulsa, no one got arrested on the scene, and it took national attention and a new Justice Department leader to really get the investigations moving. Republicans have begun to gaslight and try to wipe the horrific event from everyone’s minds.

I sure hope they don’t succeed.

Florida Man (Homo floridiensis) h/t to Quixote!

Good weekend and Memorial Day weekend Widdershins

Instead of the usual and typical Memorial Day post I’ve done in the past I thought we might take a look at what’s going on with our friend down in the southernmost state.

Apparently he has become a genuine actual phenomenon as you can see here:

Florida Man is an Internet meme, popularized in 2013, in which the phrase “Florida Man” is taken from multiple unrelated news articles describing various actual people who hail from or live in Florida. Internet users typically submit links to news stories and articles about unusual or strange crimes or events occurring in Florida, particularly those where “Florida Man” is mentioned in the headline and has been wreaking havoc. The meme calls attention to Florida’s supposed notoriety for strange and unusual events. Miami New Times noted that freedom of information laws in Florida make it easier for journalists to obtain information about arrests from the police than in other states and that this is responsible for the large number of news articles.

[snip]

The meme has widely been seen as a confirmation of the association between Florida and bizarre or humorous activity, and it has been compared to the Darwin Awards.

 

* * * *

Okay this one was from last year but I still think it’s funny.

In news that could only have come from Florida, one Jacksonville gas station owner became “sick and tired” of locals using his microwave to warm their urine.

Those coming into the station to use the microwave were allegedly not customers, but instead, were suspected to have been en route to a nearby drug testing facility.

Indeed, a LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics are both within walking distance of the gas station. Although a spokesperson for Quest Diagnostics alleges that their facility does not engage in drug testing, LabCorp has remained silent on the matter.

He described one such incident in which the culprit was so desperate to microwave her urine that she starting “cussing” and replied: “Well, where is the sign that says you can’t use this for this kind of purpose?”

Oh those clever drug addicts!

* * *

On Nov. 6, when staff members at a Florida alligator farm entered a crocodile enclosure and saw two floating Croc shoes and discarded clothing, they were worried.

The employees at the Alligator Farm Zoological Park in St. Augustine, Fla. did not see a victim in the enclosure but did soon find a trail of blood that reached the top of the 20-foot enclosure. According to the Florida Times-Union, they alerted police right away.

Police solved the mystery rather quickly after arresting 23-year-old Brandon Hatfield nearby. Someone had already called 911 and reported a bloody man stripped down to his underwear crawling through a local woman’s yard. Surveillance video taken at the enclosure during the time of the break-in also revealed that Hatfield had entered the park at around 7:45 p.m. on Nov. 5 and spent four hours in the exhibit.

In the arrest report for Hatfield, an officer noted that Hatfield was sitting on the bank of the pool when a crocodile latched onto his foot. Hatfield then frantically began trying to fight off the crocodile and eventually managed to get away.

Before staff members at the Alligator Farm Zoological Park were even aware of the break-in, a neighbor in the area called police after they saw a suspicious man “doing a slow, creeping crawl” across her property. The crawling man turned out to be Hatfield, who’d apparently lost his clothes in his nighttime swim and was now nursing crocodile bite injuries.

“There’s a man with only gym shorts crawling,” the caller said. “He’s just crawling with his shorts halfway down his [butt] and no other clothes.”

Is it the heat or the stupidity or both?

 

* * *

This last one just leads you down a path to asking “WTF?”

A Florida man claimed ignorance when jail officials found syringes in his rectum during an early morning strip search.

Wesley Scott, 40, was arrested Friday in Pinellas County on an outstanding warrant charging him with drug possession, reports The Smoking Gun.

When Scott was searched at the jail, officers found three syringes inside his rectum.

However, Scott claimed he had found the syringes and they were not his, although he did not explain how they wound up in his buttocks.

Scott was charged with introducing contraband into a correctional facility and held on $5,000 bond.

* * * *

Okie doke Widdershins, enjoy your holiday weekend.

Open thread of course.

 

Good Weekend Widdershins!

 

Ah Florida, the gift that well, just won’t go away will it?  As a change of pace from weekend music I decided to do a quick search on strange news/crime/criminals in the Sunshine State and the ones below all occurred this year.  You may have seen some of these in the news but nevertheless I’m adding them here. So with that let’s move along.

 

* * * *

Yeah, I liked the Flintstones too but not this much.

 

WESLEY CHAPEL, Fla. – A Florida man (of course… Florida man) was pulled over by law enforcement and given a citation.

All sounds normal, until you learn that he was dressed as Fred Flintstone and the vehicle he was “driving” was the footmobile made famous in the popular cartoon show.

But before you go all T-Rex on the cops, understand that it was all in fun.

Don Swartz (aka, Fred Flintstone) was driving around the Pasco County area in his Smart Car disguised as the footmobile, WTVT reports.

Pasco County deputy H. Echevarria pulled Swartz over for allegedly speeding in a neighborhood and issued him a notice to appear.

“A very special thank you to Mr. and Mrs. Don and Trina Swartz for being such great sports… Yabba Dabba Doo!”

* * * *

This guy wanted something to drink and real bad y’all.

DeLAND, Fla. – A man says he climbed onto a DeLand convenience store’s roof Saturday morning in an attempt to get into the business, because he was thirsty, according to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office.

The Woodland Food Mart was closed when Michael Monacelli, 31, told deputies he tried to get inside the store because he was dehydrated and needed something to drink. He tried getting in by breaking a window, the suspect told deputies. Unable to get into the business, Monacelli climbed a tree and onto the roof, according to the arrest report. He told deputies that he then crawled into a hole on the roof  for shelter.

[snip]

While explaining how he came to be on the roof, a deputy confronted Monacelli about his reasoning, pointing to the full bottle, saying “You’ve had that water for almost 30 minutes and you’ve had two sips of it.”

“I was trying to put your thing first above my hydration,” Monacelli told the deputy, referring to his questions.

As he was being placed into a patrol car, Monacelli said he didn’t even try to climb on the roof, “it just happened.”

Monacelli was cleared by medical personal before he was booked into the Volusia County Jail on charges of attempted burglary and property damage.

* * * *

This one appears to have already had enough to drink.

BIG PINE KEY, Fla. – Authorities say a drunken Florida man bit another man’s fingertip off at a campsite in the Florida Keys.

Monroe County Sheriff’s spokesman Adam Linhardt said in a news release that the victim and his wife had a campsite next to 54-year-old Aurelio Rodriguez at Bahia Honda State Park. They told deputies that on Friday night, they brought a bottle of tequila to share with Rodriguez but he had already been drinking.

An arrest report says Rodriguez fell and the victim tried to lift him but couldn’t. When he tried one last time to lift him, Rodriguez bit the man’s finger.

A deputy found Rodriguez’s face covered in blood. Paramedics found the missing fingertip but doctors couldn’t reattach it.

Rodriguez is charged with aggravated battery. A lawyer isn’t listed on jail records.

* * * *

Yep, those robocalls bother me too, but

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – A Brevard County man fed up with election-related robocalls was arrested Monday after deputies say he threatened to blow up the Brevard County Supervisor of Elections Office.

According to the arrest report, Daniel Chen, 65, of Melbourne, called the Supervisor of Elections Office and threatened to blow up the building. During the call Chen identified himself and left his phone number. In an interview with authorities Chen admitted to making the call due to being “extremely upset over the robocalls.” Chen told deputies he has been trying throughout the week to stop the calls.

“He was upset over the robocalls from political parties so he called in a bomb threat to the supervisor of elections,” Brevard County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Tod Goodyear said.

Chen is charged with making a false report of a bomb. He was arrested Monday and ordered held in lieu of $15,000 bail.

* * * *

(sigh)  I’ve been curious about things also but never, never this curious about anything.

PALM BAY, Fla. – A man who admitted he’d been “curious” about public masturbation did so in front of a security camera at a water treatment plant because he’s “dumb,” according to the Palm Bay Police Department.

Police said they were called to the Palm Bay water treatment plant on Monday shortly after midnight because an employee saw a man masturbating and exposing himself to a security camera. An officer saw Nicholas Heinzen, 20, leaving the area in his vehicle as he was arriving to the scene to investigate.

olice said they were called to the Palm Bay water treatment plant on Monday shortly after midnight because an employee saw a man masturbating and exposing himself to a security camera. An officer saw Nicholas Heinzen, 20, leaving the area in his vehicle as he was arriving to the scene to investigate.

The officer pulled Heinzen over and questioned him about what he was doing in the area, to which Heinzen claimed that he had just turned down the road to turn around because he thought he had left his credit card at home, the report said.

When questioned further, Heinzen said he was “curious” about masturbating in front of the camera at the water treatment plant so he drove there, mooned the camera then masturbated while wearing a hat and napkin around his face, according to the affidavit.

Heinzen said he did it because he is “dumb,” the report said.    **

He was arrested on a charge of indecent exposure.

** No truer words have ever been spoken.

And last, courtesy of the Miami Herald we have a video compilation of dumb criminals.

 

That’s it Widdershins.

Open thread of course.

 

 

MLOTUS

Posted on: May 31, 2018

first-lady-melania-trump-style-aug-29-gettyimages-840584440.jpeg

Good morning Widdershins,

This will be a brief post, work is keeping me busy. Our threads are, as always, open and we will try to keep up with the latest news.

The burning question of the week (more important than what the fuck happened in Puerto Rico?) is:

Where in the world is Melanie Trump? Since she ended up in a hospital with kidney problems, and a procedure I’m told is an outpatient type of deal that kept her in the hospital for 5 days, she hasn’t been seen since May 10th.

Asked about the first lady’s health before he boarded the presidential helicopter on the South Lawn, Trump pointed to the second floor of the White House and said: “She’s doing great. Right there. She’s doing great. She’s looking at us, right there.”

Despite Trump’s assurances, reporters didn’t see any sign of the first lady watching from above.

Earlier today Melania tweeted a tweet no one believed was written by her. People found many Trump tweets with the words “working overtime” in them however, so it looks like Trump now has Melania’s phone.

Screen Shot 2018-05-30 at 11.31.00 PM.png

Now, if Hillary Clinton had disappeared from the White House under such mysterious circumstances you can be certain the entire press corps would have been hounding the administration about it. They would have parked on the front lawn demanding to see her. But with Melania’s bizarre disappearance, they see it as a minor curiosity. Those wunderkinds at the NY Times with their amazing access don’t seem to have a clue either. Or – maybe – they are just choosing to help with the cover-up to keep their access. So what do you think? Did Melania run away with the butler? Is she cooperating with Mueller? Did she get a face lift? Is she in witness protection? Donde Melanie?

This is an open thread.

Did You Know?

Posted on: May 3, 2018

This week my post will be non Dump related. Our comments will follow the latest news, but I thought I’d do something a little different to take our mind off the bananananity of our lives. It’s a “Did You Know?” of interesting facts you may not know about. So let’s dive in and maybe learn a thing or two (I didn’t know any of these things.)

Did you know that Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa is estimated to be worth about $780 814px-Leonardo_da_Vinci,_Salvator_Mundi,_c.1500,_oil_on_walnut,_45.4_×_65.6_cm.jpgmillion? (Seems cheap, no?) But since it’s not for sale and never will be it’s unclear how much someone would actually be willing to pay for it. I’m sure an auction would bring the price into the billions. The most expensive painting ever actually sold and bought is da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, painted in around the year 1500 of our lord. It sold in 2017 for $450.3 million. The seller? Dmitry Robolovlev. Yes, the same guy who bought Trump’s worthless Florida house for tens of millions more than it was worth…

Did you know that the German chocolate cake is named after an English-American baker Sam German, not the country??

Did you know that the chainsaw was invented to aid in childbirth. Think about that for a minute. The instrument of horror in horror movies was invented in 1830 by a German (naturally) orthopedist Bernhard Heine. Heine made a prototype for cutting bone and by late 18th century two Scottish doctors revised the instrument to aid in symphysiotomy (widening of the pelvis to help the baby move out.)

Did you know that the last letter added to the English alphabet was the letter J and it is located next to the letter I because it looks almost the same?

Did you know that the Citicorp building in Manhattan, built in 1977 and designed by IMG_4597-copy-3-1024x768.jpgWilliam J. LeMessurier, was destined to be blown down by the wind if Diane Hartley, an enterprising architecture student, didn’t notice the flaw in its design? The building has an unusual structure – its 9 story columns stand in the center not the corners of the building to make room for a Church that was there first. It looks cool, right? Now think about winds: there are two types of winds – winds that blow at the corners and winds that blow directly at a wall, and all buildings take into account strong winds, so the building doesn’t collapse in a storm. LeMessurier accounted for the winds by installing a gigantic weight at the top that would swing in the opposite direction of the building in a storm and keep it balanced. After this Citicorp building was already opened and occupied, Mr. LeMessurier got a phone call from an assistant who had a phone call from a young architecture student (Diane Lee Hartley) writing a thesis on the building and she noticed that LeMessurier did not account for the winds that would blow at the corners of the building. Typically buildings are strongest at their corners, so it wouldn’t be an issue. But this was not an ordinary building. It had no support at the corners which would have made it vulnerable to strong winds blowing at the corners and there was a high chance (1 in 16) that the building would eventually collapse from a storm. And there was a

diane-hartley-e1397598824849-600x482

Diane Lee Hartley in 2014

Hurricane Ella making its way towards the island! In the middle of the night, in secret to prevent panic, the architects worked to fix the mistake, and the NYPD and emergency services coordinated an evacuation plan within a 10 block radius in case the building collapsed. 2500 Red Cross volunteers were on stand-by. The good news is that Hurricane Ella never made it to Manhattan and the building was reinforced without its occupants even knowing they were in danger.

Did you know that “a buttload” is an actual measurement of weight?

Did you know that opening a barrel of whiskey is called “drilling the bunghole?”

And if I were to ask you what is the most perfect day in the history of the world, what would you say? I’m beginning to think that the most perfect day in the history of the world was April 18, 1930. Why? Well, it was so perfect that there was literally no news to report. A BBC News announcer came on the air at 20:45 and said: “There is no news.” And with the remaining 15 minutes of the broadcast the BBC played music.

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