Urinal Technology: (1) Two Brazilian firms collaborated recently to test a whimsical device that could perhaps lessen splashing on men's room floors: a urinal containing a fretboard that makes musical sounds as liquid hits it (if the stream is strong enough). According to a May report in the Brazilian edition of Billboard magazine, versions were set up in several Sao Paulo bars to see if men's aims improved. (Flushing produces an online address from which a sound recording of the user's "music" can be retrieved.) (2) In a project that has already gone live in 200 Michigan bars and restaurants, the state's Office of Highway Safety Planning has installed "talking" urinal cakes featuring a female announcer urging inebriated patrons to call a taxi.
Latest Religious Messages
-Recurring Theme: From time to time, Buddhist groups attempt to improve their "karmic balance" by doing good deeds for Earth's animal cohabitants. (Previously, "News of the Weird" mentioned a California group's "freeing" fish by buying out a pet shop's inventory and liberating the "lucky" fish into the Pacific Ocean — where they were undoubtedly eaten almost immediately by larger fish.) In June, about 50 members of the Let Blessings and Wisdom Grow Buddhist group in Beijing bought at least 200 snakes, took them into a rural area of Hebei province, and, chanting, released them. Almost immediately, the snakes infested the nearby village of Miao Erdong, horrifying the villagers, who were able to club to death some of the snakes, but who remained on edge.
-Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's weekly Morbidity and Mortality newsletter reported in June that, officially, 11 newborn Jewish males in New York City between the years 2000-2011 were diagnosed with herpes simplex virus that had been passed on by a circumcision technique in which the "mohel" (circumciser) contains bleeding by sucking blood directly from the wound.
-Adriana Villareal of Dos de Mayo, Argentina, lost her husband two years ago but now makes it a point to visit his tomb about four times a year, and not just briefly. Villareal brings bedding, an Internet connection, and a small stove so that she can remain three or four days at each visit. Said Villareal, according to a June Agence France-Presse dispatch, "When you love someone, you do all sorts of things."