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NEWS OF THE WEIRD: Week of May 5, 2020

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On April 22, Bowling Green, Kentucky, Mayor Bruce Wilkerson was hard at work at a house he has been renovating when he smelled cigarette smoke and “heard a ruckus” outside, so he went to investigate. The former police officer found blood on the cellar door and a bag containing women’s clothing inside, but after determining there were no reports of missing women in the area, he told the Bowling Green Daily News, he went back to his work. Later, the electricity suddenly went out, so he returned to the cellar and this time found a young woman. “She said, ‘I’m hiding from someone,’” Wilkerson told police, then she ran away. Police haven’t identified her, but Wilkerson wanted to set the record straight before “a story would come out that I had a lady locked up in my cellar.” [Bowling Green Daily News, 4/22/2020]


Eliza Ruth Watson, 37, raises chickens in Gray, Maine, so she’s used to seeing foxes nosing around, but as she worked in her garden on April 23, the fox she spotted didn’t run when she tried to scare it off by hollering and waving her arms. Instead, the animal lunged toward her, ready to attack. “Thinking back on it now, the fox was a mangy, stanky fox,” Watson told the Sun Journal. She responded by kicking it, but “it kept coming back, and I kept kicking it.” Finally Watson grabbed the fox around the neck, and as it fought back, she shoved it into a large pot used for scalding chickens, sealed the lid and called 911 and her husband. At the hospital, she received five rabies vaccine injections. “People kept asking, ‘Are you the one who wrestled the fox?’” she said. “It’s certainly not how I expected to spend my day.” [Sun Journal, 4/24/2020]




— A videoconference meeting of the Vallejo, California, planning commission got a little weird on April 20 when commissioner Chris Platzer announced, “I’d like to introduce my cat,” then was seen throwing the cat off-screen. Later Platzer was seen drinking a beer, and after the meeting ended, city staff could still hear him making derogatory remarks about the commission, the Vallejo Times-Herald reported. In an April 25 email to the newspaper, Platzer apologized for his actions and said he has resigned from the commission. “We are all living in uncertain times, and I certainly, like many of you, am adjusting to a new normalcy,” he wrote. Mayor Bob Sampayan said he was bothered by Platzer’s “whole demeanor during the entire meeting.” The commission had scheduled a vote to remove Platzer on April 28. [Times Herald, 4/27/2020]

— ABC News reporter Will Reeve made an internet meme come to life on April 28 when he appeared on “Good Morning America” to report on pharmacies using drones to deliver prescriptions. Looking dapper in a sport coat and open-collared shirt, Reeve no doubt thought his home setup would camouflage the fact that he wasn’t wearing pants, CNN reported. Twitter had a field day, and Reeve himself tweeted back, “I have ARRIVED … in the most hilariously mortifying way possible.” [CNN, 4/28/2020]


The National Weather Service issued a dust advisory on April 27 in eastern Washington after wind gusts of more than 40 mph kicked up a wall of sediment. “We have had reports of blowing dust near Dusty (seriously, near the town of Dusty) on SR 26 and SR 127,” the NWS tweeted. According to Fox News, the Washington State Patrol reported that SR 26 was “fully blocked” about 3 miles outside of Dusty after a car and a semi-truck crashed. The highway remained closed for about six hours. [Fox News, 4/28/2020]

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