Archive for May, 2012

Snake-handling preacher killed by snake, just like his dad

Mark Wolford (Photo for The Washington Post by Lauren Pond)

Mark Wolford (Photo for The Washington Post by Lauren Pond)

If you lie down with dogs, you get fleas. Lie down with timber rattlers, and you’ve got a good chance of not getting up again.

That’s what happened to West Virginia pastor Mark Wolford, reports The Washington Post.

Wolford died while hosting an outdoor service Sunday at Panther Wildlife Management Area in West Virginia. During the ceremony, the lively preacher sat a rattler on the ground and sat next to it. The snake did what snakes do — it bit him on the thigh.

Instead of going to a hospital, he went home and tried to recover. His kidneys shut down within three hours. Someone called paramedics when it was too late.

Wolford, who combed the woods for vipers, should have known better. In 1983, when he was 15, he saw his dad die while “taking up serpents.”

But faith, which has never actually moved a mountain, has a way of moving people away from reality.

“Praise the Lord and pass the rattlesnakes, brother,” wrote …

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Zuckerberg stiffs Rome waiter on honeymoon

zuckerberg-chanFacebook’s $20 billion dollar man probably didn’t get rich by being overly generous.

Now, Mark Zuckerberg’s penurious ways are attracting the attention of at least one Rome waiter, who received no tip from the Facebook founder.

Zuckerberg is in Italy on his honeymoon. He married longtime girlfriend Priscilla Chan in his back yard the day after the social media giant’s company went public, making him and many of his employees some of the richest people on Earth.

London Telegraph reporter Nick Squires reports Zuckerberg and Chan really like artichokes. While honeymooning Monday, they dined on deep-fried artichokes, fried pumpkin flowers and ravioli stuffed with sea bass and more artichokes. The total bill – about $40. The tip? Zero.

Waiters at the “service included” restaurant Nonna Betta were “amazed” they didn’t at least get a Like, a Poke or even a friend request from Chan’s dog Beast.

Word is the happy couple also didn’t tip the night before after eating pizza.

This kind …

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Cop: Dropped charitable contribution equals littering

What most people consider litter. (AJC)

What most people consider litter. (AJC)

DeKalb County pedestrians’ hobby of choice, littering, works a lot differently in Ohio, where a man faces up to a $500 fine for dropping a $1 bill he was attempting to give a street urchin.

Motorist John Davis tells Cleveland’s Fox station that he was stopped in traffic and saw a man on the roadside in a wheelchair seeking charitable contributions. The man was even holding a “religious” sign, so clearly he was worth helping.

Davis, whose brother is also in a wheelchair, reached for his wallet.

He rolled down his window and handed the less fortunate Cleveland denizen two bucks, but one of the dollar bills fell to the ground. The man in the wheelchair picked up the dropped cash and Davis continued on his way until a Cleveland police officer pulled him over and wrote him a ticket for littering.

The ticket cites Davis for “Throw [sic] paper out window” and in parentheses, “money to panhandler,” Fox 8 reports.

Police officials …

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Reagan’s blood pulled from auction

President Ronald Reagan is photographed with Southern GOP Chairman Bill Harris (left), Newt Gingrich, and Mack Mattingly in this Jan. 26, 1984 photo. (AJC)

President Ronald Reagan is photographed with Southern GOP Chairman Bill Harris (left), Newt Gingrich, and Mack Mattingly in this Jan. 26, 1984 photo. (AJC)

UPDATE: As predicted, a vial said to contain the dried blood of former President Ronald Reagan will not be auctioned, CNN reports.

The auction was halted Thursday, with the anonymous owner of the vial saying he’d be happy to donate it to the Reagan library. Bids had surpassed $30,000.


Officials with the Ronald Reagan library have vowed to “use every legal means to stop” the sale of blood taken by a hospital where the president was treated after a 1981 assassination attempt.

Sky News reports the online auction has already attracted bids of more than $10,000.

The seller, not identified, claims he got the blood from his mother, who worked as a nurse contracted by Walter Reed Army Medical Center when Reagan was admitted there after the March 30, 1981, assassination attempt by John Hinckley Jr.

The former U.S. …

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8 businesses busted for selling alcohol to minors

Marietta teens looking to sample adult beverages are out of luck, thanks to the diligent efforts of local law enforcement.

Police in the Cobb hamlet conducted a sweeping “alcohol compliance check” May 16 and found eight businesses violated the law by serving underage buyers.

Unbelievably, a company that chose the name “Loco Willy’s” is among the scofflaws.

The “underage buyers” used in the sting are Boy Scouts volunteering with the Marietta Police Department’s Explorer Post, police said.

Thirsty-seven businesses asked the boys for IDs and were not cited.

Here’s the list of the businesses that sold to minors.

  • Battle&Brew 279 Powers Ferry Rd. Marietta, GA 30067;
  • Citgo 574 Roswell St. Marietta, GA 30060
  • Jimiz Lounge 2090 Cobb Pkwy. S Smyrna, GA 30080
  • Rodney’s Jamaican Soulfood 2092 Cobb Pkwy. S Marietta, GA 30060
  • Taqueria Tsunami 70 S. Park Sq. Marietta, GA 30060
  • Fairground Food Mart 619 N. Fairground St. Marietta, GA 30060
  • Beer Barrel 1294 Roswell Rd. Marietta, GA 30060;
  • Loco …

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Father of 30 struggles to pay child support

“Be fruitful and multiply” sounds like quite the party until the child support bill arrives.

Just ask poor Desmond Hatchett, a Tennessee volunteer if there ever was one.

WREG-TV in Memphis reports Hatchett, a minimum wage worker from Knoxville, recently asked the court for help in making his child support payments. The 33-year-old man has fathered 30 children by 11 women and is having trouble keeping up with the bills.

Half of his paycheck, the maximum allowed by Tennessee law, is garnished. Some mothers receive $1.49 a month.

How did this happen?

“I had four kids in the same year. Twice,” says Hatchett, who is better with the ladies than the ladies are at picking men.

Hatchett was last in court in 2009 when he had only 21 children and he said he was “done” with making babies.

If he gets relief from making child support payments, perhaps he can use the extra cash for condoms or a vasectomy.

Or for hiring a film crew to make him a reality TV star.

Note: Turning off …

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Diamond swallowing thief’s bowel movements monitored

diamond-questAll things must pass, sang George Harrison.

Canadian police are saying pretty much the same thing after jailing a diamond thief who swallowed a 1.7-karat gem worth $20,000.

“We are monitoring his bowel movements, if you will,” Windsor police Sgt. Brett Corey told CBS News. “Our forensic identification people are the lucky ones who have to go through the waste to obtain the diamond …”

That makes my job, and probably yours,  seem kinda cushy.

The thief, Richard Mackenzie Matthews, visited a jeweler May 10 and attempted to use sleight of hand to replace the real gem with a fake. The eagle-eyed jeweler had a gut feeling something was amiss, however, and called police, who were soon hot on the crook’s entrails.

After his arrest, Matthews was given laxatives to move the investigation along, but now he’s allowed to eat whatever he wants, reports the Associated Press.

X-rays on Matthews’ innards have revealed two cubic zirconiums (aka fake diamonds) stuck in the man’s …

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70-year-old virgin seeks wealthy mate

Tall, dark, handsome millionaires looking for true love and/or a virgin are in luck; 70-year-old cabaret singer Pam Shaw is still available.

Shaw, who “turned heads” for many a year on the club circuit while performing as the teasingly-titled “Sexational Pam,” remains a tough nut to crack. She has resisted the legendary wiles of both Tom Jones, 71,  and Englebert Humperdinck, 76, reports The Daily Mail.

But now that’s she’s slowing down a bit she’s got time for marriage, and maybe even sex, eventually.

‘I feel I am ready to give marriage a go and maybe go to bed with a man,” said Shaw, who lives near Manchester, England. ”You are never too old for anything. Just look at Joan Collins.”

Collins, 78, has been married five times, and possibly had sex outside of wedlock, something Shaw says she’ll never do.

“My standards are still very high,” said Shaw.

Perhaps too high.

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New Mayan calendar: World not ending in 2012

Proof the world will not end in 2012.

Proof the world will not end in 2012.

Good news for those looking forward to Christmas, the world’s not ending in December 2012!

Archaeologists not working for some lame cable TV program have discovered a new, but really old Mayan calendar that extends our purchasing power into George Jetson territory.

The Mayans, best known for crackpot misinterpretations of their Mesoamerican scribblings, were obsessed with time, and some had theorized the ancient culture, which had not predicted Spaniards, had somehow predicted The End of Time.

Not so, says someone really smart about this sort of thing.

“The Mayan calendar is going to keep going for billions, trillions, octillions of years into the future,” said archaeologist David Stuart of the University of Texas, who worked to decipher glyphs found in 2010 in the ancient Maya city of Xultun in northeast Guatemala.

The calendar, the oldest Mayan one ever discovered, features stacked bars and dots that count lunar cycles.  It was likely …

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Atlanta ranked 7th ’smuttiest city”

The seedy underbelly of Atlanta is clearly outlined in this foggy photo. (John Spink/AJC)

The seedy underbelly of Atlanta is clearly outlined in this foggy photo. (John Spink/AJC)

Atlantans love many things — efficient transportation systems, hockey, quality public education and honest, hard-working government servants — just to name a few.

But porn?

Avert thine eyes chaste city dweller, our fair city has been besmirched by Men’s Health magazine, which names Atlanta as the 7th “Smuttiest City In America.”

I’ve traveled a fair bit, I’ve been as far north as Memphis, and I find the list as shocking as a badly wired Hitachi Magic Wand.

Orlando, a modern day Sodom and/or Gomorrah if ever there was one, placed first. Why? Probably because the rankings look at the number of porn movies rented, purchased or streamed, and that central Florida town doesn’t have many things for visitors to do, though I’ve not visited since 1970 when we forced granny into a “home.”

Other criteria for the “statistical peephole” included the number of adult entertainment stores, the rate of …

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