Top 10 Offbeat Stories of the Day – July 16th, 2012

Dying man’s final…, Autistic man survives…, Chimps on the loose in Las Vegas…, 82-year-old woman found…, If a gasoline tanker tips…, Internet Cat Video Film Festival…, Chinese kitten stows…, Car thief…, Arrested New Guinea cannibal cultists…, Chocolate-taster forced…

1. Dying man’s final wish was to leave a $500 tip for a random waiter or waitress. Very sweet story! 

The media response yesterday and today has been amazing — enough to make the website almost unreachable all day. There are several things I want to do (like add a donation meter, I know you want to see it) but haven’t had time as I’ve been fielding media requests all day. Everyone wants to know about this amazing opportunity that all of you have helped create.

2. Autistic man survives 3 week ordeal in Utah desert

The father of a 28-year-old autistic man who barely survived three weeks in remote southern Utah says his son was an experienced mountaineer but was out of his element in the harsh desert. John LaFever said Friday that his son William made one crucial mistake: setting off for a 150-mile journey along the wild Escalante River without food or equipment that was apparently stolen before his trip got under way.

3. Chimps on the loose in Las Vegas; one killed, other tranquilized – chicagotribune.com

Police here took a brief walk on the wild side Thursday, tracking down two escaped chimpanzees — shooting and killing one animal and tranquilizing  the other, officials said. Several panicked residents called dispatchers shortly after 10 a.m. to report that the chimps were acting aggressively in a northwest Las Vegas neighborhood. Officers moved in to find a male and a female in “an agitated state,” said Officer Laura Meltzer, a spokeswoman for Las Vegas police.

4. 82-year-old woman found with 90 diseased cats, but on the bright side, she only ate a few of them

It is a case of animal hoarding that may turn your stomach. An Arizona woman is in trouble for keeping too many cats. The case is playing out in the northwest valley, in the town of Wittmann. The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office says 64 cats were found at Lucienne Touboul’s home on Wednesday. Most of them are alive. Nine of them were kittens. “It is just too many. Too many for an elderly person to care for, let alone care for themselves,” said Humane Society veterinarian Nancy Bradley.

5. If a gasoline tanker tips over and catches on fire, let the spilled gasoline go, because man, it’s gone

About 100 people have been killed when a gasoline tanker crashed on the east-west road in Nigeria’s oil-producing Niger Delta and caught fire, our correspondent has said.
“At least 100 people have been killed and at least 18 people were injured and taken to hospital,” Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Adow said on Thursday. Our correspondent reporting from the capital, Abuja,said the death toll from the accident was expected to rise. Hundreds of people crowded around as soldiers and emergency workers lifted bodies into ambulances and police trucks.

6. Internet Cat Video Film Festival: Now Accepting Nominations!

Calling all cat-video-lovers: please nominate your favorite cat video by July 30th for inclusion inWalker Open Field’s Internet Cat Video Film Festival!  We all have our favorites – some bookmarked in our browsers, some found using the same three key words in a search engine, and some living in starred emails we don’t dare delete from our inboxes – that we go back to time and again when we need a break or laugh.

7. Chinese kitten stows away on LA-bound freighter 

This photo provided by the Department of Animal Care and Control shows a department employee with a kitten that survived an ocean voyage from Shanghai to Los Angeles locked in a shipping container without food or water. Los Angeles County animal control officers say they’re cautiously watching the health of a kitten found in a freight container shipped by boat from Shanghai. Officials say the 3-month-old kitten traveled 6,500 miles without food or water before arriving Wednesday, July 11, 2012. Photo: Department Of Animal Care And Control / AP.

8. Car thief who was high on drugs and m*sturbating when he plowed into Portland crime scene will not have to register as s*x offender

A man who was intoxicated and m*sturbating to po*nography when he drove a stolen car through the crime scene tape surrounding the homicide of a teen-age boy last year will not have to register as a s*x offender.

 9. Arrested New Guinea cannibal cultists ate raw brains, p*nis soup.

Papua New Guinea police have arrested members of an alleged cannibal cult accused of killing at least seven people, eating their brains raw and making soup from their penises, a report said Friday. The 29 people, who appeared in court this week charged with murder and cannibalism, were part of a 1,000-strong group formed to combat errant sorcerers who The National newspaper said had begun charging exorbitant fees.

 10. Chocolate-taster forced to give up dream job after piling on two stone – Telegraph

Angus Kennedy, 47, was warned his cholesterol level was becoming “dangerously high” after landing the £30,000-a-year dream job in 2010. His role required him to gobble up to 2lbs of weird and wonderful goodies – like cocoa-covered ants and aphrodisiac lollipops – every day. Manufacturers – including Mars and Nestle – relied on his experience and sophisticated palate to sample new treats ahead of production.