Friday, 6 May 2011

April Showers. Grumpys Alternative News.

Where to start?
We are all interested in 'dosh' so I reckon some 'money' stories. I see the Church of England was one of the most successful investors last year, returning 15.2% on its investments.The RC's aren't doing so well, a cross and ring belonging to Pope Paul VI is on E-Bay, starting price £522,000 and an RC priest in Connecticut stole $1 million of church money to fund a lavish life style, including male escorts.
A scam involving the Chinese 'reassembling' scrap German Euro coins was worth at least £20 million whilst a woman in a London divorce court was awarded a mere £2.8 million. Not bad though for eighteen months marriage! I see David Frost is selling 300 bottles of wine, expected to fetch £120,000 whilst the piano used by Paul McCartney to write Yesterday fetched £150,000 in a London auction. At least these immensely rich sellers will get their money, which is more than can be said for those having money in a bank in Lucknow. Termites ate 10 million rupees in notes (£137,000) stored in a steel chest.
Kelly Fannin, a 'professional' thief at least got value for her ill-gotten gains. Never employed, aged thirty-three, her spendings included £4,500 on breast enlargements. About as bright as the moustached, deer-stalking robber of two convenience stores in Sheffield. Later unmasked as Alison Lee, aged forty two. Oh well, worth a try!
All reported in the Times. How interesting the same paper reported the Athenaeum sacking a butler for stealing barbecue leftovers. It is indeed a world of the 'haves and the have-nots' I fear.

Now for the award of 'plonker(s)' of the month.
The Chief Constable of Devon and Cornwell who left his valuables in his car overnight. I know it shouldn't happen, but was he surprised when his radio and personal belongings 'walked'. Plus the 20,000 drivers of police diesel vehicles in this country who filled them up with petrol; average cost of repair, £93-£960. You and me pay of course, not the drivers!
The Indonesian politician involved in the passing of strict pornographic laws. Only to be caught on film staring at porn websites by a photographer. Oops! And the Czech President, Vaclas Klaus, caught on camera pocketing a pen belonging to his Chilean counterpart, Sebastian Pinera. Oops again!

A short spiel on traits in countries that I find alarming.
The French for their frightening arrogance. (My Mother in law is French and a wonderful woman. in case she reads my blog!) They are fighting new rules that do not permit the drinking of wine by riot police whilst on duty. (Frightening that someone would even try to defend such privileges.) We British are as bad. Note the behaviour meted out to Ian Tomlinson in London presumably by riot police that presumably hadn't been drinking.)
Austrians who baked cakes and decorated them with Nazi themes. Its the fact that they don't see it as offensive that I find most alarming.
Americans who allowed their six year old to take a loaded gun into school, which he promptly dropped in the cafeteria, injuring three children. And likewise the parents of an eight year old boy who sold his father's gun at his school in Flushing Queens for $3.00. Plus I presume the eight year throwing a tantrum at school in Denver was a problem. But did the police really have to use a pepper-spray and handcuffs to subdue him?
The world is full of blinkered, unthinking individuals. And Britain has its fair share of those too. A teenager was impaled on railings after a cycling accident in Barnstable North Devon. The council's reaction? Send him a bill for damage caused! It's no good apologising afterwards, think for goodness sake. But there are people and places that cheer me up in an often god forsaken world.
Laura Vikmanis, left by her husband for a younger women. Did she mope; did she heck. She became a cheerleader and is now the oldest cheerleader in the American National Football League at the age of forty two. Good on yer, gal! (Her story soon to be a Hollywood film.)
The Australian tribunal that decided British teacher Luke Webster was unfairly dismissed for trying to to teach non-English speaking students the correct (some might say incorrect) use of the F-word. Come on, fellas, it's not as if Australia is exactly the home of the Queen's English, elocution and all that!
Pc David Rathband, blinded by the gunman Raoul Moat. Who, completely lacking self-pity, competed in and completed the London Marathon. And the group of British servicemen amputees who trecked unsupported to the North Pole. (Joined for part of the journey by Prince Harry.)
The whole of Mexico who, contrary to expectation, came out top in a league of hard workers. (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.) They work longer than other nations and are still the third happiest nation in the world.
Still on a happyish note let our animal friends have the last word. The RSPB are using plastic puffins to lure the real thing back to Ramsey Island after being absent for one hundred years.
A Hertfordshire farmer is puzzled as to why his thirty seven white ewes and one white ram has produced sixty black lambs. (It might be worth checking nearby farms!)
A gorilla called Komale in Bristol Zoo surprised everyone by picking up a duckling and cuddling it. Amazing, but as they say in Derbyshire. 'Don't push your luck, ducky!'
Nonja the orang-utan had some Lego blocks for his birthday. He normally does paintings, his keepers in Vienna Zoo hope the blocks might encourage him to move on to sculptures.
Finally, who can resist the picture of the dog (plus his 449 companions) rescued by activists on his way to a restaurant in Jilin to be served as the plat du jour.

And finally, finally, a piece of mind-bending unimportance. Men with ring fingers longer than their index fingers are more likely to be rated as handsome by women. (Findings of Camille Ferdenzi, a Geneva psychologist.) Don't say you never learn anything from Grumpy's blog!


Tequila Sepulveda said...

I would NEVER say such a thing. I learn TONS. Some, I'd rather not have learned, but hey, knowledge is power. :)

Galen Pearl said...

What an entertaining and informative post! Truth really is stranger and often funnier than fiction.

Valerie said...

I liked your happy section. Please let us know how Nonja gets on with his sculpting. Incidentally, I wonder how the termites got into the steel cabinet.

Stranger in a Strange Land said...

Inpsiration! I love your 'American' snipits - they lead me to investigate and write whole blogs from those couple of lines!

Charlotte Mooney said...

I feel sorry for Vaclas Klaus. I don't think he intended to steal the pen. It is not unknown for me to absentmindedly sip a client's cup of coffee during a project meeting.

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