You couldn't make it up: offbeat stories from 2010
Saturday 25 December 2010
Some weird, wild and wonderful stories from 2010:
- A Copenhagen bus company has put "love seats" on 103 of its vehicles for people looking for a partner. "Even love at first sight is possible on the bus," said a spokesman for the British owned Arriva company to explain the two seats on each bus that are covered in red cloth and a "love seat" sign.
- Shoppers at an international luxury fair in Verona, Italy, found a cell-phone-equipped golden coffin among the items on display. The phones will help "the deceased" contact relatives if they have been buried alive by mistake.
- Inmates at an infamous Moscow prison where a lawyer died last year in a case that sparked global anger will get a full suite of new creature comforts including sunbeds. "Is Butyrka turning into a sanatorium?" a sceptical mass-circulated Komsomolskaya Pravda daily asked in a headline.
- Paul the octopus, who shot to fame during this year's football World Cup for his flawless record in predicting game results, died peacefully in his sleep in an aquarium.
- Delhi authorities deployed a contingent of langurs - a large type of monkey - at Commonwealth Games venues to help chase away smaller simians from the sporting extravaganza.
- A Mozambican prisoner who had been released on parole broke back into jail after discovering he didn't like life on the outside.
- A British church held an unusual ceremony when a vicar blessed the mobile phones of 80 workers in the City of London financial district. The idea came from a historic tradition where workers would bring the tools of their trade, like ploughs, to be blessed on the first Monday after people return to work after Christmas.
- A robber in New York came up with a disarming way to pull off his latest bank heist, approaching the teller's window with a large bouquet of flowers and handing over a hold-up note.
- A Kuwaiti MP proposed state-aid for male citizens to take second wives, in a bid to reduce the large number of unmarried women in the oil-rich emirate.
- Shanghai officials hope to curb the growing popularity of man's best friend in the city with a one-dog policy.
- A Frenchman who lost all his limbs in an electrical accident successfully swam across the Channel, a challenge he had been preparing for two years.
- A set of dentures made for Britain's war-time prime minister Winston Churchill known as "the teeth that saved the world" sold for nearly 18,000 pounds (21,500 euros, 28,000 dollars) at auction.
- The strongest and most expensive beer ever created sold out within hours, a Scottish brewery said, as they courted controversy by packaging the bottles inside the bodies of stuffed squirrels and stoats.
- A British woman sparked an Internet hate campaign after she was caught on camera dumping a cat in a rubbish bin. She was fined 250 pounds (400 dollars, 280 euros) after pleading guilty.
- Two Australian men needed surgery after shooting each other in the buttocks during a drinking session to see if it would hurt.
- Even Hong Kong's dead cannot escape the Internet. In Chinese culture, relatives are expected to visit the cemetery at least once a year to pay their respects. But now, mourners can simply visit memorial.gov.hk set up by the government and set up a page free-of-charge.
- The BBC apologised "unreservedly" after a radio presenter jokingly announced that Queen Elizabeth II had died.
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
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- 2 Margaret Thatcher 'expressed fears of Asian rising' at Anglo-Irish summit in 1984
- 3 Sussex couple die in suspected Christmas Day 'suicide pact'
- 4 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 5 The Unluckiest People of the Year 2014 (and one very unlucky giraffe)
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
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