Archive for April, 2012

Dutch to bogart weed

An 'economy-sized' blunt is fired up in protest.

An 'economy-sized' blunt is fired up in protest. (AP)

A popular reason to visit the Netherlands is about to go up in smoke.

The Associated Press reports a national “pass the weed” law will prevent foreigners from purchasing marijuana in the zillions of “coffee shops” lining the canals of Amsterdam.

City leaders in Amsterdam must feel like they’ve been hit in the head with a wooden shoe because stoned tourists (and multiple dikes) help keep their fabled city afloat.

The new law, which will take effect throughout the country by 2013, will turn coffee shops into private clubs with membership open only to Dutch residents.

The national government argues the move will help crack down on so-called “drug tourists,” couriers who drive over the border from neighboring Belgium and Germany to buy large amounts of marijuana and take it home to resell.

Soon, the only reason to visit Amsterdam may be its rich history, culture, fantastic museums and tawdry sex shows. The local beer remains …

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More Secret Service sex secrets not-so-secret

Secret Service agents doing what they get paid to do. (AP Photo)

Secret Service agents doing what they get paid to do. (AP)

You’d think the people working for the Secret Service could keep a secret, but it’s hard to keep a ribald tale quiet, it seems.

Right on the high-priced tail of the scandal down in Colombia, the world’s largest producer of cocaine, comes word that agents in El Salvador, the smallest country in Central America, have been up to no good there too.

Seattle’s KIRO TV breaks the news, saying reporter Chris Halsne has interviewed a civilian contractor who says he joined about a dozen Secret Service agents and a few U.S. military specialists at a strip club in San Salvador (the tiny nation’s capitol) a few days before President Obama and his family arrived in March 2011. The president was visiting to meet El Salvador’s new president, Mauricio Funes.

A spokesman for the Secret Service, Edwin Donovan, said the agency was investigating the new allegations.

Agents were “heavily intoxicated” (aka “wasted”) at the strip club and …

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Wild hog hunter shoots girlfriend

Despite being my hometown's most famous denizen, Hogzilla was converted into bacon. (AP)

Despite being my hometown's most famous denizen, Hogzilla was converted into bacon. (AP)

Even vice presidents accidentally shoot people, but a wild hog hunter in Florida had some ’splaining to do after blasting his girlfriend.

The Orlando Sentinel reports Steven Egan, 52, was hog hunting in Flagler County (north of Daytona Beach) with his girlfriend, Lisa Simmons, also 52, when he shot her through both thighs with a .30 caliber rifle.

The happy couple was hunting “from a tent” at a park on County Road 305, which sounds like as good a place as any to shoot a wild hog, except maybe for Berrien County (Ga.), home of the late Hogzilla.

Egan told police he heard a noise in the woods and fired, not realizing the noise was coming from Simmons.

No charges have been filed in the incident, and Simmons is recovering in a local hospital.

I’m not sure how you can win back the love of a woman you’ve shot after mistaking her for a wild hog, but I hope she gives him a …

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Free drug tests hit town on 420 eve

Nothing ruins a good party like a thorough drug testing.

How to get free lawn service.

How to get free lawn service.

Parents wishing to throw water on Friday’s 420 festivities may wish to seek out the offices of Rural/Metro ambulance services in Roswell.

Rural/Metro, along with anti-drug website and drug testing company First Check, is handing out testing kits today at 250 Hembree Park Drive in Roswell. The First Check kits test for 12 drugs (seven illicit and five prescription), not just marijuana.

In my hood, 420 means a delicious ale crafted locally by the beer mages at Sweetwater Brewing. But, as any Phish fan will tell you, 420, aka April 20 (and/or 4:20 p.m.) has long been not-so secret code for smoking marijuana.

April 20 has more recently become the day NORML and other organizations have publicized their push to decriminalize marijuana use in the U.S.

A press release advertising the event, which ends at 5 p.m. Thursday (but will resume Friday at 7 a.m. if 650 drug tests don’t go up …

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Record number renounce U.S. to avoid income tax

Would you renounce your U.S. citizenship if it meant you didn’t have to pay an income tax?

More Americans than ever are saying “yes” to that proposition, according to the Internal Revenue Service.

A Reuters article says 1,800 people either renounced their citizenship or relinquished their ‘Green Card’ in 2011, the highest number since the IRS began publishing a list of those who’ve quit Team U.S.A.

The number that walked away in 2011 is eight times larger than those who renounced their citizenship in 2008, Reuters reports, and more than 2007, 2008 and 2009 combined.

Why are people doing it? Probably taxes.

The United States is one of the few countries to tax citizens living abroad. An estimated 6.3 million Americans living overseas have until June to file income taxes, but some apparently find the liability is greater than the benefit.

Longstanding federal law requires U.S. citizens to list offshore bank accounts, but a new law — 2010’s Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act — …

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‘Real Ridiculous Research’ fueled by tax dollars

Everyone hates taxes and almost everyone loves animals. So, what better way to commemorate the IRS filing deadline than by revealing how your money is used to fund what one animal rights group calls “Real Ridiculous Research?”

Patin, Emslee and Arielle, chimpanzees, at the New Iberia Research Center in New Iberia, La., Oct. 28, 2011. (AP Photo)

Patin, Emslee and Arielle, chimpanzees, at the New Iberia Research Center in New Iberia, La., Oct. 28, 2011. (AP Photo)

In Defense of Animals today released its annual list of research that animals, and maybe humans, could do without.

Researchers linked to Emory University made the list twice.

Coming in at No. 8 is a study by Emory experimenters that suggests prairie voles (mouse-like critters) raised in single parent holes do a poor job of raising children. Now we know who to blame when Vole Jr.  appears on Intervention, addicted to researcher sunflower seeds.

And did you know researchers at Emory’s Yerkes National Primate Research Center have discovered chimpanzees are more likely to yawn after watching familiar chimpanzees yawn when viewing a …

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Study: Beer fuels male creativity

It’s long been known that beer makes women prettier, but a new study concludes beer also makes men more creative.

Brain food served by the bucket in East Atlanta. (Photo by beer enthusiast Steven H. Walker)

Brain food served by the bucket in East Atlanta. (Photo by cheap suds enthusiast Steven H. Walker)

The New York Daily News reports the experiment, like most really good ones, was conducted in a bar. The article does not say who paid for the study, but I’m thinking it was a group of men or a beer company.

“We found at 0.07 blood alcohol, people were worse at working memory tasks, but they were better at creative problem-solving tasks,” psychologist Jennifer Wiley, who presumably was not drinking, says in the article, which I have forwarded to my wife.

Wiley parrots what any man who has had to come up with an excuse for running late while sitting on a bar stool will tell you: “Sometimes the really creative stuff comes out when you’re [drinking].”

For the experiment, conducted by University of Illinois researchers, a group of 40 men was given three words and …

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George Zimmerman seeks donations via new website

George Zimmerman, who says he shot and killed Florida teen Trayvon Martin in self-defense, has a new website where he’s asking for financial assistance from his supporters.

The Retreat at Twin Lakes is where 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman on Feb. 26, 2012. (AP Photo)

The Retreat at Twin Lakes is where 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed by neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman on Feb. 26, 2012. (AP Photo) is missing animated gifs, but the non-working click counter definitely evokes web nostalgia. I almost dusted off the ole 56K modem and logged onto AOL to give it a proper gander.

Zimmerman’s lawyer, via Fox News, confirms the domain, registered April 8 with, is legit.

Why create a website?

Zimmerman alleges the “website’s sole purpose is to ensure my supporters they are receiving my full attention without any intermediaries.”

Then, just atop a PayPal button, he says he needs donations “for living expenses and legal defense, in lieu of my forced inability to maintain employment.”

Zimmerman, who has been in hiding …

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Mega Millions ‘winner’ a loser of winning ticket

Imagine the joy of winning millions in the lottery.


Mirlande Wilson, center, will be able to afford even fancier hats if she finds the 'misplaced' winning Mega Millions ticket. (AP Photo)

Now imagine losing that winning ticket.

Now imagine lying about everything to any reporter who will listen.

That would seem to be the case of alleged Mega Millions winner Mirlande Wilson, 37, of Maryland, who’s claimed to have won a third of the world record $656 million lottery jackpot.

As you’ve doubtless read before, Wilson refused to share her presumptive millions with her McDonald’s co-workers, whom she had purchased tickets with in a pool.

Wilson, a Haitian immigrant and mother of seven, quit her fast-food gig by calling in to tell her former friends she was a millionaire and would not be sharing because she purchased the winning ticket separately from the office pool.

Today, NBC News reports Wilson has “misplaced” the ticket.

When asked if she was a teller of tall tales, Wilson told …

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Beautiful columnist bravely bears scorn of other women

Beauty, like genius, is its own reward.

It’s also a terrible burden.

Imagine then the miserable existence of Daily Mail columnist/narcissist Samantha Brick, who recently tore herself away from a mirror long enough to pen a humble prose piece entitled: “There are downsides to looking this pretty: Why women hate me for being beautiful”

As a man, it was difficult to force my brain to read (and not simply drool) as the column is chock full of pictures detailing every alluring aspect of Brick’s self-described “lovely looks.”

You don’t get this beautiful without a little work. The genetically flawless Brick says she doesn’t drink or smoke. She works out, even when she “doesn’t feel like it,” and she “very rarely succumbs to chocolate.”

Still, the 41-year-old can’t wait to get even older so she can add some wrinkles and gray hair and begin “blending into the background” of visual mediocrity.

Brick, who’s been married to one lucky guy for four whole years, admits to flirting “to get …

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