“clearly, i need structure in life” … not to mention the kind of firepower that can stop a slow-moving animal from taking my beer

the secret downside to legitimately working on non-random-news-story updates is that you fuss over them so long that just when you think you’re making some progress, you realize you’re once again very far behind the incredibly demanding “maybe do this update thing once a week” schedule you set for yourself. i have to be honest: this was always easier when it was a handful of people posting once a week (some may remember that’s how the schedule gotten changed from “whenever the fuck i feel like it, and maybe never, because eh, whatever” some years back) because it was like a competition to actually CREATE something. clearly, i need structure in life.

i WILL admit that, in this light, the cows do look particularly fierce and the police officer does look particularly ineffective

police say roving Massachusetts cows drank some brews

yeah, yeah, cows these days, they’re out of control and they want our beer. actually, i have two major beefs with this story, and they’re actually not so much cow-based as they are based on the title of the article:
01. in the ACTUAL article, which you can reach through my graciously-provided link there, the title is “Police say roving Mass. cows drank some brews.” really, we needed to abbreviate the word “Massachusetts” in the title of the article? and before you say, “well, it’s a long word…”
02. …the event apparently took place in “BOXFORD, Mass.” (again with the abbreviation), which means it was Massachusetts cows doing things in Massachusetts to residents of Massachusetts. which means it’s entirely unnecessary to even identify them as Massachusetts cows at all, unless there’s something specific about Massachusetts cows i should be aware of?

but anyway, the events in question:

“Police in Boxford say a roving group of cows crashed a small gathering in town and bullied the guests for their beer.
Boxford Police Lieutenant James Riter said he was responding to call for loose cows on Sunday and spotted them in a front yard on Main Street.
Riter says the herd soon high-tailed it for the backyard, and then he heard screaming.
He says when he ran back there, he saw the cows had chased off some young adults and were drinking their beers.
Riter says the cows had knocked the beer cans over on a table, and were lapping up the spillage. He says the bovines even started rooting around the recycled cans for some extra drops.
Riter says the cows’ owner eventually grabbed some friends and herded the cows back home.”

i’m actually willing to believe that cows can push people around (they’re large, and there’s probably not much the average man can do to them if he’s not currently armed with a firearm of a sizable caliber) and that they hunger for beers (i knew a dog like that). what i find perplexing is more the following, aside from the aforementioned beef:

–that this would be called “bullying.” it’s not “bullying” when a polar bear tries to eat you; that’s just a bear being a bear. i know we don’t want to pretend that a cow is somehow a fearsome animal, but maybe we could say “attacking?” any animal can attack you, even if it’s totally ineffective.
–that there was a police officer –hell, a police LIEUTENANT, even– responding to a call for loose cows? in Massachusetts? what the hell is going on here? it’s not like this is Wyoming, where television gives me the impression there’s 13000 animals to every man and the local police is a single man solving everyone’s problems (including, presumable, loose cows).
–that these punkass “young adults” couldn’t flee from oncoming cows WHILE clutching their beers. i guarantee i could pass that challenge, you young punks.

ultimately, this is, as far as i am concerned, a harsh indictment of Massachusetts residents, in that they’re apparently such a nanny state up there that their young men aren’t packing the kind of heat that could stop a cow and are too sissified to even carry a beer and run at the same time. may your respective god have mercy on all our souls if former King of Massachusetts Mitt “Mitt” Romney becomes president.

adding insult to injury, the CBC adorned this story with a photo of a moose, as if the fact that children were tricked into eating moose shit is the fault of the moose. oh Canada, when will you learn?

students tricked into eating moose poop by school staff

you know what the most shameful part of this story is? that it didn’t take place in America. the Canada i know is a clean, friendly place where Canadian national treasure Scott Thompson can roam the streets freely (which is to say, my vision of Canada is basically 50% Toronto and 50% that scene in the Untouchables where there’s some Mounties and Sean Connery in a gunfight with bootlegging gangsters). if i saw Scott Thompson wandering unprotected in MY state –and i live in a fairly well-kept area– i would immediately be concerned for his safety. Michael Moore has taught me America is comparatively out of control! conversely, when i think of a combination of “low-brow jokes” and “people tricked into eating shit,” i think of GOD’S AMERICA. so the fact that this came from the CBC News stuns me.

“Some parents are furious after learning their children were tricked by school leaders into chewing moose droppings on a class canoe trip in Manitoba.”

now, i know this means “a group of parents,” but doesn’t it KIND of sound like they’re saying some of the parents whose kids were tricked into eating moose shit don’t really mind that much? “yeah, i know my son was tricked into eating unwashed fecal material that came out of a moose, but come on, that shit’s funny!” and the word ‘shit’ there even works on a couple of different levels!

…yes, it’s the American in me showing. i’ll try and keep things moving.

“Karen Eyolfson, whose 13-year-old son was one of two students to bite into the droppings, has pulled her boy from Walter Whyte School, saying the trust between staff and students has been broken.”

ma’am, there’s no need to couch this in such polite terms. if they were making your child eat crap in some manner WITHOUT a level of trickery, it would still be wrong. one does not need to have a lack of trust to be victimized by the consumption of shit.

“It happened during a school trip on May 25. Two Grade 8 teens from the school in Grand Marais, Man., were given the poop but told they were chocolate-covered almonds. Three staff members have been disciplined for not stepping in to stop the joke played on the students with moose droppings.Three staff members have been disciplined for not stepping in to stop the joke played on the students with moose droppings. “He dug into a bag and popped one in his mouth. As soon as it hit his mouth somebody tells him, ‘You just ate moose shit’ and the whole group of people started laughing at him,” said Eyolfson. She said it was a parent chaperone that offered her son the so-called almonds from a sandwich baggie. But the principal of the school, a resource officer and her son’s teacher all watched it happen, Eyolfson said.”

most disappointing? that they yelled out “you just ate moose shit” RIGHT AWAY instead of letting him eat it a little bit. although i suppose i should assume it’s pretty easy to IMMEDIATELY tell the difference between “chocolate-covered almonds” and “mouthful of moose shit” even one bite in. still, come on, guys, let the joke develop!

also, as a true connoisseur of profanity, i LOVE the fact that the CBC News uses the phrase “moose shit” in their article without shame. god bless that Canada!

“When her son ran off to wash out his mouth, a 13-year-old female classmate who didn’t witness the incident was also tricked by the same adults into eating the droppings, Eyolfson said. The girl got it stuck in her braces and was humiliated, said Eyolfson.”

alright, i agree, that’s incredibly awful … but you know, being tricked into eating moose shit is kind of humiliating whether or not said moose shit gets stuck in your braces. especially if you’ve eaten it in public as part of a public joke at your expense. and ESPECIALLY if teachers and parents and the like are all in on this joke.

“Even though it was a parent who played the joke, the staff members are still responsible, said Lord Selkirk School Division superintendent Scott Kwasnitza. “There’s certainly an expectation that they will protect our children and this, this didn’t need to go as far as it did. And the staff should have intervened in a timely fashion,” he said.”

in keeping with my day of intentionally misunderstanding Canadians, i know what he means, but choose to believe the sentiment is “i mean, tricking ONE kid into eating moose shit is funny, but one kid is enough. two kids? too far!”

“Kwasnitza said three staff members have been disciplined, but he wouldn’t reveal the nature of the action taken against them.”

please let it be that they had to eat moose shit in front of children, please let it be that they had to eat moose shit in front of children, please let it be that they had to eat moose shit in front of children…

“An international anti-bullying expert is shocked by the incident.”

yes, but really, is an “international” anti-bullying expert NOT going to be shocked by something like this? plus, what’s her advice?

“Rosalind Wiseman, a Washington-based author on bullying … said the school division should order the staff involved in the incident to take anti-bullying training-“

“a tragic event has happened here in Canada, truly. in order to make this right, i need to be given money so that i can explain to everyone involved why it was wrong of authority figures to trick children into eating moose shit in public!”

okay, let’s wrap this up on a classy note:

wait, so in a story about an incredibly ridiculous crime, THIS is the stock photo they resort to? see, now i get what all those dudes were saying about the effects of corporate money on America

handless man arrested for throwing boulder

wait, what?

“Albuquerque police arrested a man who speaks only Swahili and has no hands on charges of throwing boulders through the windows of a KFC restaurant.
Martin Ventura, a KFC employee, said in a criminal complaint that Koffi Mbairamadji, 46, chased a woman into the restaurant Friday and was then punched by another customer who tried to protect the woman, KOAT-TV, Albuquerque, reported.
Ventura said he believes that’s why the man later returned to allegedly break the windows.
The complaint said Mbairamadji allegedly used his wrists to throw a rock the size of a volleyball through a window and then tossed a brick through the drive-through window, KOAT reported.
“All this glass is all over, and it’s like, ‘What the heck happened?'” Ventura said.
During his arraignment Monday, Mbairamadji said through a translator he was brought to the United States by the United Nations two years ago. There are limited details about who he is or where he’s from, KOAT said.
Police said there were no injuries in the incident.”

so someone threw a volleyball-sized rock into a KFC, and this warrants the arrest of a man who doesn’t speak English AND who doesn’t even have hands? shouldn’t he be the only guy NOT suspected of throwing the rock? although as all true Americans know KFC is awesome, i have to admit a police response of “lock up a foreigner for this heinous crime” is probably appropriate.

but let’s get to my true objection: calling a volleyball-sized rock a “boulder.” is this a) unacceptable or b) outrageous? or maybe both? first, we turn to Wikipedia:

“In geology, a boulder is a rock with grain size of usually no less than 256 mm (10 inches) diameter. While a boulder may be small enough to move or roll manually, others are extremely massive. In common usage, a boulder is too large for a person to move.”

so even if you dismiss the “no less than 10 inches” part on account of the “citation needed,” please note that “common usage” tells us that a boulder is “too large for a person to move” … especially if that person has no hands. and if you don’t dismiss it, well, a volleyball has a mere circumference of 65–67 cm. but that’s just Wikipedia, where any number of anti-internet-news dudes could make it LOOK like this wasn’t a boulder. so let’s turn to Merriam-Webster:

“detached and rounded or much-worn mass of rock”

so, okay, i SUPPOSE this volleyball-sized rock means the exacting standard of “mass of rock,” although i still think we all know this doesn’t pass the smell test that says we all know what’s a boulder and what’s not.

plus, here’s the real point: this story involves the following things WITHOUT getting into the rock specifics:

–a suspect who speaks only Swahili, HAS NO HANDS, and claims “he was brought to the United States by the United Nations,” something that isn’t clarified AT ALL;
–a crime of woman chasing followed by face-punching followed by KFC vandalism;
–a KFC employee who can witness a large rock smashing through a window and then claiming to be CONFUSED AS TO WHAT happened.

THERE IS NO NEED TO TRY AND MAKE IT MORE EXCITING. this is your lesson for the day, random UPI writer.

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