Gringo Manaba

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Archive for the 'Wacky News' Category

A Pitcher’s Worth a Million Words

Posted by dowbrigade on 10th June 2009

shakespeare-seriously-noob.jpgAustin, Texas June 10, 2009 – The Global Language Monitor today announced that Web 2.0 has bested Jai Ho, N00b and Slumdog as the 1,000,000th English word or phrase. added to the codex of fourteen hundred-year-old language. Web 2.0 is a technical term meaning the next generation of World Wide Web products and services. It has crossed from technical jargon into far wider circulation in the last six months

from The Language Monitor

Technically, is “Web 2.0” a word? Isn’t it a phrase or a version? The reason that English has more words than any other language (at least according to English-speaking linguists), is that a) it historically and compulsively steals the best words from all of the other languages it comes into contact with, like schadenfreude and tutti frutti, and b) because it makes it so gosh darned easy to make up new words out of thin air! The English, pedantic though they may be, and unlike the French and Spanish, have no Royal Academy of English to decree what is or is not an “official” word. It is a Darwinian jungle of a language, where words subject themselves to a merciless usage-based survival of the fittest. But in the final analysis, any fool can invent a new English word.

The Dowbrigade attempted to fill a void in Shakespeare’s voluminous lexicon when, at the tender age of 16, he coined the term “spastik” /spaz-tÉEk/, to describe the desire to get high, reasoning analagously that if you want drink you are thirsty, if you want food you are hungry, but if you want to get high, you are spastik.

It is uncertain if the term spastik ever reached beyond our little gang of juvenile delinquents in Upstate New York. We think we may have heard it in a rap song back in the 80’s, and once in a smokey reggae bar in Cambridgeport, but it was never clear enough to be sure. Perhaps The Global Language Monitor will never feature it on their web site, but it certainly seems more wordly than “Web 2.0”.

Posted in Humor, Language, Wacky News | 12 Comments »

NYTimes reports 33-year orgasm!

Posted by dowbrigade on 14th March 2009

An interesting article appeared in yesterday’s New York Times on life at the San Francisco sex commune One Taste Urban Retreat Center. Even the venerable Grey Lady is showing a little cleavege in these dark days for print journalism…

MS. DAEDONE’S inspiration and mentor as a sex guru was Ray Vetterlein, who achieved fame of sorts in sex circles by claiming to lengthen the average female orgasm to 20 minutes.

Mr. Vetterlein, now in his 80s, was inspired by Lafayette Morehouse, a controversial 40-year-old community still in existence in suburban Lafayette, Calif., that has been conducting public demonstrations of a woman in orgasm since 1976.

We know that woman! In fact, if she is indeed who we think she is, we were largely responsible for that original orgasm back in ’76. Us, a bottle of Roher 714s, Merck flake and a pair of snakeskin boots…..

Posted in Humor, Wacky News | 7 Comments »

Hillary Down But Not Out

Posted by dowbrigade on 12th June 2008

Now that Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign has crashed and burned in tatters and ashes, it seems an appropriate time to chime in with one of our patented, wrong-in-so- many-ways political predictions: Don’t Count Her Out Yet.

This may be but a brilliant subterfuge on the part of the Clinton Brain Trust, designed to let her candidacy fly under the radar for a few months before rising like a Phoenix in Denver to save her party, her political ass (that’s Bill), her marriage (Bill again) as well as to save her nation from four more years of this macho madness.

Remember that the Super Delegates can change their minds at any time up to the actual moment they cast their votes; that’s what makes them Super. And if no candidate wins an absolute majority on the first vote, they will keep voting until someone does. This could take a while.

Although multiple roll call votes, and the back room bargaining they engender, have been largely banned from the media-managed modern political conventions, there is no reason they could not make a comeback – the rules and traditions are still in place. During the longest nominating process in history, in 1880, James Garfield won the Republican nomination with 399 votes to 306 for U.S. Grant on the 35th ballot and after four exhausting days. As a delegate admitted, “It was the escape of a tired convention.”

So what could get those declared Super Delegates to undeclare and change their minds? Any one of a number of revelations, unexpected developments, world events or just plain fate could intervene. Any guesses as to the specific nature of these possibilities would be pure speculation and irresponsible journalism, but then, what are bloggers for?

The following ten headlines should not be construed as predictive or prejudiced against any particular candidate, but are merely intended as food for thought. Like the Dowbrigade, they are not in any way related to reality.

1. Michelle Obama Mud Wrestling Tapes Surface
6-week stint at NJ Hooters Recorded by Rugby Team

2. Obama Law School “Lost Weekend” Found
Ended on Lynn MA park bench, booked for indecent exposure

3. Southside Bouncer Claims Barack Sold Bunko Blow
Candidate reportedly middled deal for fake flake

4. Senate Race Obama CV Lists 3 CIA Fronts as References
Damning info removed before Presidential bid

5. Aide Asserts Obama Hides Father’s Koran Inside Bible Binding
Plans to take oath of office on Islamic Tome

6. Obama Makes Anti-Semitic Comment at B’nai B’rith Fete
Off-mike comment caught on cell-phone: “Who needs the damn Hebes, anyway?”

7. Obama Abducted by UFO on Camping Trip
Recounted incident in 1988 NPR interview

8. Obama Rent Paid by Banned Islamic Charity
Overseas support during ‘lean years’ as Chicago organizer

9. Teen Barack Organized Black Panther Chapter at Punahou High School
Only chapter in Hawaii included all three blacks at school

10. Obama Bigamy Alleged
Indonesian woman has proof she was “child bride” in arranged marriage

If nothing like this crops up spontaneously, we hope Hillary’s hordes have venom and expertise enough to whip something up, and plant it so it can’t be traced back to the Clintons. After all, if she can’t win dirty, she isn’t the politician we thought she was, and doesn’t deserve the top job after all.

But if a miracle can be manufactured, watch out. Hill’s been taking names for a while now, and those on the list better hope she’s down for the count.

Posted in Humor, Media News, Politics, Wacky News | 2 Comments »

Hopeful News Item of the Day

Posted by dowbrigade on 30th May 2008

MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — Bahrain’s king has appointed a woman believed to be the Arab world’s first Jewish ambassador as the country’s envoy to Washington.

Lawmaker Houda Nonoo said she was proud to serve
her country “first of all as a Bahraini,” adding she was not chosen for the post because of her religion.

“It is a great honor to have been appointed as the first female ambassador to the United States of America and I am looking forward to meeting this new challenge,” Nonoo told The Associated Press by telephone.

from the AP

Bravo for Bahraini Houda NoNoo, but Alec Trebeck is calling – he wants to buy back a vowel.

Posted in Humor, Serious News, Wacky News | 6 Comments »

999 Luftballoons

Posted by dowbrigade on 22nd April 2008

SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) — A Roman Catholic priest who floated off under hundreds of helium party balloons was missing Monday off the southern coast of Brazil.

Rescuers in helicopters and small fishing boats were searching off the coast of Santa Catarina state, where pieces of balloons were found.

Rev. Adelir Antonio de Carli lifted off from the port city of Paranagua on Sunday afternoon, wearing a helmet, thermal suit and a parachute.

He was reported missing about eight hours later after losing contact with port authority officials, according to the treasurer of his Sao Cristovao parish, Denise Gallas.

Gallas said by telephone that the priest wanted to break a 19-hour record for the most hours flying with balloons to raise money for a spiritual rest-stop for truckers in Paranagua, Brazil’s second-largest port for agricultural products.

from AP

He probably had a date with the Flying Nun… 

Posted in Uncategorized, Wacky News | 10 Comments »

Afghan Dog Fights Enrage Taliban, Not US

Posted by dowbrigade on 19th February 2008

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bombing at an outdoor dog fighting competition killed 80 people and wounded scores on Sunday, an Afghan governor said. It appeared to be the deadliest terror attack in Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban in 2001.

Unlike in the U.S., where star Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick was sentenced to 23 months in federal prison for his role in a dogfighting operation, dog fights are a popular form of entertainment in Afghanistan.

German shepherds, bully kuttas and Afghan mastiffs do not fight until death but rather until one dog pins another or one of the fighters runs away. The dogs have clipped ears and tails and carry the scars of battle.

The events can attract hundreds of spectators who cram into a tight circle around the spectacle. The sport was banned under Taliban rule.

from the AP

Let me get this straight. We lock Michael Vick up in the Federal Penitentiary in Leavenworth for organizing dog fights, and then we send thousand of troops to die in Afghanistan defending the right of our Afgan allies to organize dog fights.

What’s wrong with this picture?

Posted in Photos, Serious News, Wacky News | 27 Comments »

Bad Dog (trite but so right)

Posted by dowbrigade on 2nd November 2007

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Dog Chapman has been captured spewing foul-mouthed racist slurs on a tape obtained exclusively by The NATIONAL ENQUIRER.

And now a civil rights leader is calling for Dog’s TV show to be removed from the airwaves.

In a shocking world exclusive The ENQUIRER has obtained tapes of two revolting phone conversations in which Duane “Dog” Chapman unleashes a filthy bigoted attack, littered with the N-word and other disgusting racial insults.

The star of the A&E reality show Dog, The Bounty Hunter directed his racist hatred at his son Tucker’s girlfriend Monique Shinnery, who is black.

Listen to the audio tapes:
Warning: These tapes contain racist and offensive language.
Click here for FULL VERSION
Click here for SHORT VERSION

from the National Enquirer

Looks like the Dog really shat the bed this time. Listening to the tape, the eerie thing is that the street-smart Dog had a prescient notion of the set-up which was about to snap its steely jaws on his overgrown testicles.

The language used by the Dog makes Don Imus’ sound like a Sunday school sermon. The kind of red-neck racism and egocentric spite revealed by the boisterous bounty hunter is impossible to defend. Ah, don’t we love a challenge.

If the Dowbrigade were the Dog’s spindoctor, we would get the grizzled gladiator in front of the cameras as soon as possible, to deliver the following statement.

“You all know me from my TV show as a crime-fighter and family man, and that is what I am. Recently, a tape was illegally recorded and released which reflects me in a very bad light. My wife and I very much regret that this has occured, and sincerely appologize to anyone who was offended by my words.

To all of those who were shocked by my language, please remember the context. This was a private family phone call between myself and my son, who I was quite angry with. I was trying to warn him about his girlfriend, who I felt was conspiring against the Chapman family with the National Enquirer, trying to destroy everything we have worked so hard to accomplish. What has happened in the past few days shows that those feeling were not unfounded. I know that someday she will try to destroy my son like she has his father, but right now he doesn’t want to hear the harsh truth.

As to the language I used, that is the language I was taught as a child, and it is the language of the streets where I do my work, keeping scumbags off the street and protecting all of the decent families of America. Over the years I have learned to control my tongue, and I never use words like that around women or children, or even in public. But when I am trying to make a strong impression on my son, I use language which will grab his attention. After all, I am a bounty hunter, not a college professor. I never intended that this conversation be made public.

So I apologize for myself, and for him, and I forgive him for betraying me because I know that he is under the influence of a powerful and evil person intent on stopping our mission to clean up the streets of America. I hope we can count on your support to continue with our mission.”

Go, Dog

Posted in Wacky News | 4 Comments »

Pope Waves from Beyond the Grave

Posted by dowbrigade on 15th October 2007

 Pope / Fire
This fiery figure is being hailed as Pope John Paul II making an appearance beyond the grave.

The image, said by believers to show the Holy Father with his right hand raised in blessing, was spotted during a ceremony in Poland to mark the second anniversary of his death.

Details appeared on the Vatican News Service, a TV station in Rome which specializes in religious news broadcasts.

Service director Jarek Cielecki, a Polish priest and close friend of John Paul II, travelled to Poland after hearing an onlooker had photographed the image.

Father Cielecki said he was convinced the picture showed the former pontiff.

“You can see the image of a person in the flames and I think it is the servant of God, Pope John Paul II,” he said.

from the Daily Mail

We hate to say it, because we alway sort of liked the formalistic old fart, but it looks to us like the servant of God, Pope John Paul II ended up in the “other place”….

Posted in Humor, Wacky News | Comments Off on Pope Waves from Beyond the Grave

Study: Kid-Biting Dogs Have Emotional Problems

Posted by dowbrigade on 2nd October 2007

Dogs that bite children have often not bitten kids before, but they tend to have underlying behavioural or medical problems, indicates research in the journal Injury Prevention.

The same can be said of children who bite dogs.

The research team analysed the circumstances surrounding 111 cases of dog bite over a period of four years. All the 103 dogs involved had bitten children and had been referred to the same veterinary behaviour clinic.

Young children were much more likely to be bitten when dogs felt their food or other resources, such as toys, were under threat.

Hey, even the Dowbrigade has been known to get snappish when his food or toys are threatened.

Behavioural analysis revealed that, the guarding of resources and territory were the most common causes of aggression among the dogs.

As among nations of men.

Three quarters also exhibited anxiety, when left by their owners, or when exposed to noise, such as thunderstorms or fireworks.

Are they talking about the dogs or the children?

Demonstrable fear may signal a tendency towards biting when faced with a perceived threat, say the authors


And young children in particular can be noisy and unpredictable in their movements, both of which could frighten an already anxious dog.

Or a curmudgeonly college professor. Watch out kids.

from Eureka Alert,

Posted in Wacky News, Weird Science | 26 Comments »

Bed and Beyond – Way Beyond

Posted by dowbrigade on 1st October 2007

A MUMBAI (Reuters) – India’s small Jewish community is up in arms against a home furnishing maker that has named its new line of bedspreads “NAZI” and used the swastika in its promotional brochure.

The furnishings dealer says the word “NAZI” stands for New Arrival Zone of India, but local Jewish leaders insisted the name rang of Adolf Hitler’s anti-Semitic regime.

The NAZI-named bedspread is being sold at stores in India’s financial capital Mumbai. The new product is promoted with a brochure that displays two red swastikas against a black background.

The brochure reads “Bed and Beyond presents the NAZI collection” with the expanded form of the word written in a very small font. The cover has a picture of two red cushions and a red bedspread.

from Reuters

All of the elements in this story have innocent explanations. The swastika (from the Sanskrit svástika स्वास्तिक ) was a revered symbol in India centuries before the Nazi’s adopted and corrupted its original mystical meaning. It is also a sacred symbol in numerous native American iconographies.

According to Wikipedia “Archaeological evidence of swastika-shaped ornaments dates from the Neolithic period. It has long been widely-used in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Jainism. Hindus often decorate the swastika with a dot in each quadrant. In India, it is common enough to be a part of several Devanagari fonts. It is also a symbol in the modern Unicode and is often imprinted on religious texts, marriage invitations, and decorations. It is used to mark religious flags in Jainism and Buddhist temples in Asia.”

And of course, NAZI is just an acronym for “New Arrival Zone of India”, but it could just as easily be “National Alliance of Zion, Inc.” or “National Archives of Zanzibar Island”.

However, the juxtaposition of the two is, as they say, beyond a reasonable doubt, beyond the pale, and way, way beyond the bed.

Posted in Uncategorized, Wacky News | Comments Off on Bed and Beyond – Way Beyond

Buddha Boy’s Back – Preaches Peace – and Quiet

Posted by dowbrigade on 5th August 2007

Finally, Ram Bahadur Bomjom, the Buddha Boy, has started preaching. The committee that looks after ‘the modern Buddha’, Namo Buddha Tapoban Committee, assembled a large crowd yesterday in Hallori Jungle in Bara district of southern Nepal that was addressed by a long haired boy clad in a maroon robe. The notice about the first ever preaching by the boy was broadcast in a local FM radio station and the committed also invited people by phone. Around three thousand people gathered to listen to Ram Bahadur Bomjom.

Ram Bahadur Bomjom spoke with several pauses as if he was finding it very difficult to communicate in the language of human being. Just to kill another possible curiosity Ram Bahadur was using Nepali language while preaching via a big mike. He also requested the people not to be skeptical about him and disturb him.

from United We Blog for a Democratic Nepal 

This Buddha Boy is the  real thing.  He once went 5 months without eating while in a deep meditative state.  Unfortunately, his enlightened message to the rest of humanity seems to be “Go away and leave me alone.” No wonder prayers don’t get answered these days.

Posted in Wacky News | 16 Comments »

The Details are in the Devil

Posted by dowbrigade on 2nd August 2007

Australia’s new $200m synchrotron in Melbourne could contribute to the fight to save the Tasmanian devil from the outbreak of facial tumour disease currently decimating devil populations, according to Dr Jeff Church from CSIRO Textile and Fibre Technology in Geelong.

Dr Church says he will use the synchrotron to see if the disease causes any biochemical changes in the devils which could be detected in their hair before the disease becomes apparent.

“If we find a consistent change, it could lead to the development of a test which will allow detection of the cancer before the tumours become evident,” he says. “This would make any quarantine strategy easier to establish, as well as much more efficient.”

The idea is based on Australian research showing disease-related changes in the composition of human hair. The suggestion is that similar changes could occur in Tasmanian devils’ hair when the facial tumour disease is triggered. “But, the theory needs to be fully tested,” Dr Church says. “It might work or it might not.”

“If a diagnostic test for the facial tumour disease using the synchrotron does look possible, only having a machine nearby would make it viable. Having to queue-up for time on a synchrotron at least nine hours flying time from Tasmania – more likely further – would make the whole thing very difficult, particularly in terms of biosecurity concerns because we would need to transport biological samples between different countries.”

from a Eureka Alert press release

We figure Australian taxpayers wouldn’t mind schlepping a few of these $200 million babies out to the outback so they can be in place on the frontlines of the war on facial tumors afflicting carnivorous marsupials.

In related news, American scientists have announced plans to retask Fermilabs Tevitron 4-mile particle accelerator in order to investigate the efficacy of using top quarks to treat genital herpes lesions in ferrets.

Posted in Wacky News, Weird Science | 3 Comments »