Disgraced Japanese Finance Minister to Endorse Sake

Tokyo, JP -21 Feb. 2009- Staff. Shoichi Nakagawa, the Japanese finance minister who recently stepped down after appearing drunk at the G7 Summit has agreed to endorse a new brand of Sake, 飲酒ヤク, which translates to “Supreme Breath of Refreshing Wind.”DV473305

Kenji Takashi, spokesperson for Kyoto Amalgamated Beverage Corporation, parent company of the new brand expressed the company’s excitment for the new venture.  “Nakagawa-san will bring much needed respect for a new sake image for a new generation,” he said. “It is just more proof that traditional beverages are gaining ground in Japan.”

While Mr. Nakagawa was unavailable for comment, his Facebook profile page indicated his support for Supreme Breath Sake, with a status message which read “Supreme Breath of Refreshing Wind- Will sweep you away from your troubles.”  His profile picture had also been changed to Supreme Breath’s logo.


Four Killed in Techno Dance Tournament

Manila, PH -20 Feb. 2009- Staff. A raucous wedding party stretching into the wee morning hours took a tragic turn when four attendees were killed while attempting acrobatic stunts on the dance floor.techno

Witnesses say that as the party progressed, representatives of the bride and groom’s respective families sqaured off in a series of aggressive, dance based confrontations while a DJ laid down ever faster and more intense beats.  Suddenly, at the peak of the competition, two of the musical gladiators bounded on top of tables, lept into midair and collided simultaneously into a pillar.  The force of the impact was enough to break the support, and a large section of the roof collapsed.  

Maria Calas, 20, Burgus Bahag-hari, 32, Leon Mangubat, 40, and Ligaya Añonuevo, 27, were pronounced dead on the scene when authorities responded to several emergency calls around  4 am local time.  First responders were greeted with a grisly tableau of twisted wreckage and mangled bodies.  In addition to the four fatalities, scores of others suffered a range of minor and moderate injuries, mainly scrapes and contusions but also some severe fractures.   

The clubs owner, Jaime Vargas, could not be reached for comment, but the club is closed pending a full investigation.

Man to Ride “Christ Cycle” around World

Panama City, PA -19 Feb. 2009- Staff. Manuel Goya wasn’t a pious man until 10 months ago, on Easter Sunday, when he awoke to find that his unicycle was emblazoned with the face of Jesus Christ.  After leaving the bike out all night in the rain, however, a strange pattern appeared on the head tube badge, warping the logo into the image of the face of the Christian Savior.  

As a result, Mr. Goya now dedicates his life to serving  God.  “From that moment, my life changed,” says Goya. “I was an evil man, and God sent me this sign to give me a mission of peace and hope.”  


Mr. Goya, after much soul searching, has now decided that he will ride the unicycle chosen by God all the way around the world to solicit funds for constructing a cathedral on the site of the miraculaous image.  “This journey will inspire others as God has touched my life.  For my salvation and the continuing salvation of the human race, I will ride the unicycle God has ordained and erect a monument to his Glory.”

If he secures enough initial funding, Goya’s unicycle route would take him up through the U.S., across the Atlantic and then through Europe and Asia, before crossing the Pacific and returning home an d beginning work on the cathedral.  Along the way, Goya hopes to solicit monetary donations from penitent congregations all over the world.

Despite being a wildly popular initiative in his home village, Goya’s globe trotting quest has drawn the ire of local church officials.  Father Federico Hermano, leader of the village parish was particularly doubtful.  “The glory of God is in the charitable acts of the Church, not some half brained, mock Richard Branson stunt,” he said.  

Still, Goya is nearly halfway to his fundraising goal and remains optimistic.  “God has set this unicycle aside for great things, and I will do his will wihout hesitation,” said Goya.

Excrement Sculpture Wins Latvian Art Festival

Riga, Latvia -18 Feb. 2009- Staff.  Art judges in the Latvian capital granted top honors to a sculpture made entirely of human excrement at the final ceremony of a three day long festival of modern art put on by the University of Riga.jeffandshit

The sculpture, which stands approximately 6 feet high, is the work of 33 year old Latvian artist Ivars Jansons, who intended it to be a commentary on modern consumption.  “Rarely do we think of where all that we consume goes,” he said, speaking through an interpreter.  “Now you see, whatever goes in the system, the result is the same.”

Jansons has a history of pushing the envelope, even among the avant garde.  Previous exhibitions have included everything from dead animals to live subjects recruited from brothels and elementary schools.

While many spectators raised a wary eyebrow at the piece as they filtered past, judges were enthusastic.  Dr. Juris Balodis, speaking during the awards ceremony, praised the work as a “seminal expression of postmodern discontent,” which “singlehandedly encapsulates the marked duality ensconced by the Western culture of consumerism and waste.”  

To make his striking, if pungent, sculpture, Jansons collected excrement from nursing homes, hostpitals and prisons in and around Riga for nearly 3 months.  He then strained the material through a grate and into an old horsecart.  Lastly, Jansons says, he sang the pile a different pop culture tune every day at exactly sunrise. “You are what you eat, you understand,” he quipped.

Man Pays Bills with Spirits of Ancestors

Anchorage, AK -18 Feb. 2009- Staff.  Utilities workers had to trek through frigid and icy conditions to a remote hillside 20 miles outside of Anchorage to settle Herman Moses’ account.  While they deal with delinquent accounts on a regular basis, the workers were lost for words when Moses offered them sevearal of his dead relatives as payment.  The Anchorage police department eventually resolved the situation, but not before Moses insisted on his bizarre proposal for several hours.    


Moses’ power and water bills, which hadn’t been paid in nearly 10 months, were lying in a heap by the door when they arrived, the workers say.  When confronted face to face by the threat of  having his power and water shut off, however, he offered a barter: several lamps, a vacuum cleaner and a non-functioning television, all which Moses claimed housed the spirits of his mother, aunt and many cousins.  

After a long discussion, the utilities workers called the police to mediate.  Shortly after police arrived on the scene, Moses agreed to pay his debt with U.S. currency.  Moses didn’t respond to repeated requests for comment.  

A note, taped to a fence post at his residence, expressed resentment:

“The stingk [sic] of authoritee [sic] is too much. The spririts will HAUNT!”

Peter Kappiataitok, an Inuit shaman, or Angakok, serving native peoples in the Anchorage area, was less than enthused about Moses’ ploy.  “I personally find the notion that one can trap the spirits of their ancestors and use them to pay debts to be both insulting and offensive,” he says.  “This is the kind of thinking one would expect from the depraved or uneducated, certainly not an Inuit or anyone with enough sense to hold a normal job and pay their bills on time.”  

According to publicly available records, Moses is an active member of St. Jude’s methodist church outside of Anchorage.

Prehistoric Sex Toy Found in Ice

Saskatchewan, CA -17 Feb. 2009- Staff. According to a new discovery in the arctic province of Canada, cavemen may have been a great deal more amorous that previous research suggests.  While excavating a site in the northern region of Saskatchewan, archaeologists unearthed a nearly complete settlement which included a wooden phallus more than 10,000 years old.  The object, discovered by Dr. Buckley Tonson of the University of Toronto, could be among the very first devices created by man for self pleasure.  neander151106pa_228x300

Among the usual stone tools and artifacts,  researchers were stunned to find the piece, which was preserved in remarkable condition under more than 20 feet of ice. Carved from a solid block of pine, the toy is roughly ten inches long, with a diameter of more than two inches and many decorative glyphs and drawings.

“What’s amazing here is not just the function of the tool, which is fascinating in and of itself, but to see such elaborate details and aesthetic sensitivity is truly unprecedented,” marveled Dr. Tonson. “These people lived in an extremely harsh environment and prized utility and efficiency above all else.  Ornamentation was rare, and to see this intense focus on decoration allows us to infer that this object was very prized and important.”

The drawings along the entire length of the object depict a variety of scenes from daily life, including a man slaughtering an antelope and a woman using a large bone needle to repair clothing.  All scenes are embellished with deeply textured, abstract patterns and appear to have been carefully planned and executed over a long period of time, said Dr. Tonson.

The object was recovered as part a two year long excavation of the site, which continues to yield important clues about prehistoric peoples in North America.  “Many parts of these peoples’ lives remain shrouded in mystery, and we’ll need a great deal more work to answer all of our questions,” emphasized Dr. Tonson. “This work is critically important to shine a light on the history of the human race.”

Zoo Staff Addicts Animals to Nicotine

Manila, ID -14 Feb. 2009- Staff.  Indonesian Federal Police who raided  a private zoo on charges related to animal neglect and abuse this week revealed a surprising new wrinkle in the case.  In addition to unusually small cages and meager rations, zoo keepers had addicted many animals to nicotine to make them easier to control.

When police arrived on the scene to serve a search warrant to investigate visitor reports of substandard conditions, they weren’t immediately shocked to find that the grounds were littered with thousands of discarded cigarettes.

When a small group of officers took a break to light up, however, they were caught off guard by a small herd of antelope who jumped over their containment fence to eat the cigarettes right out of the officers’ mouths.  As they made their way through the compound, they found that nearly all animals, even the fish in the ponds, would approach them eagerly for a piece of tobacco.

Zoo workers, when questioned, explained that they had mixed tobacco into all the feed in order to have an “insurance policy” against unruly animals.  They cited several cases where they had neutralized antelope stampedes and other would be escapes by mollifying the beasts with cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco.

Similarly, animals who did manage to escape would wander back to the zoo after a matter of hours to seek more nicotine.  All zoo workers were arrested on animal abuse charges and are awaiting trial.  Animals at the facility were relocated or released, but it’s unclear how their long exposure to tobacco affected them.