Odds & Ends

Statue Terminated

Plans to build an 80-foot statue of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator character in his Austrian hometown have been scrapped because of his support for President George W. Bush. The statue was set to tow over other, more traditional statues of figures such as composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and the Austrian Emperor Kaiser Franz Joseph and plans were unveiled in a blaze of publicity last year. Now the southern city of Graz is angry at Schwarzenegger’s decision to support Bush and the war in Iraq and it will shelf the statue and plans to discuss renaming the Arnold Schwarzenegger Football Stadium. Herwig Hoeller, project manager for the statue, said the project was shelved because it lacks the public backing it had initially.

Goodbye nurse

A hospital worker in a Boston hospital was fired for giving a newborn baby to the wrong mother for breastfeeding. The woman’s sister-in-law said the child nursed with greater vigor and appeared to have longer hair than her sister’s son. The woman said that when she alerted the nurse, the nurse took the baby from her, looked at the tag and said it wasn’t the right baby. Mark Whitney, spokesman for Winchester Hospital, said doctors did not anticipate any health problems for the baby or the woman and apologized on behalf of the hospital. Administrators have launched an investigation.

Speedy Gonzales

A Romanian couple decided to name their newborn son Speedy Gonzales because the child was born in the car as it sped to a hospital. The couple was headed to a hospital in Suceava but was held up when the car broke down. The father said he was able to repair the car, but the boy arrived while the car was speeding down the road so he decided to name the child Speedy Gonzales. The boy and his mother are both said to be in good health.

Fire one step ahead of fighters

A group of firefighters in Welmbuettel, Germany were forced to watch helplessly as a house burnt down next to their station. Bricks and rubble caused by an explosion blocked the door to the garage housing their engines and hoses. Firefighters ran out of the station after hearing the explosion, which sent pieces of wreckage flying more than 160 feet, but could only watch as the house burned just 60 feet away. Police spokesman Guenter Santjer said the owner of the house was away hunting when the explosion happened. A fire crew from a neighboring town put the fire out two hours later.

Never really leave high school

A food fight erupted in Taiwan’s parliament as lawmakers quarrelling over a massive arms budget hurled their lunch boxes at each other. Chu Fong-chih, a member of the National Party, threw a take-out box of chicken and rice at Chen Tsung-yi and screamed that the man had no shame. Chen, a legislator from the Democratic Progressive Party, responded by accusing Chu of sympathizing with China and flung his lunch box at her. Legislators were meeting to decide if a proposed $18 billion budget to buy weapons from the United States should be put on the legislative agenda for later in the week.

Nothing runs like a deer

A store owner in Sioux Falls, S.D. said it would take at least a day to clean up after a deer crashed through a window and knocked over displays and merchandise inside. The doe darted through traffic and went through a side window at Balloons, Bears and Bouquets. Bystanders watched as the deer knocked over plants and displays attempting to find a way out. Officers with the city’s animal control department eventually killed the deer and removed it.

Producer pays pennies

While on location shooting a new series for Paramount Network Television, producer Ronald Schwary’s location team asked Stefanie and Myron Roth to stop trimming their trees because the noise was interfering with production. The Roths agreed on the condition that the team paid them $1,000. Schwary waited several weeks then had 100,000 pennies delivered to the Roths. When the couple figured out what happened they became outraged and threatened to sue. Paramount responded with an apology letter and agreed to pay the Roths $1,000 and to donate $1,000 to their favorite charity.

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