We’ve all heard of people blowing up at their family, but this is ridiculous.
69-year-old Czeslaw Kaminski (he’s Polish, in case you couldn’t tell) woke up one morning in his home in Lodz to find nothing in his bed with him except the note his wife left, explaining that she took the children for a picnic.
Apparently losing his mind at the thought of an idyllic late morning in the great outdoors, Czeslaw called his wife, Grazyna, and leveled threats at her, none of which she took seriously.
Further enraged that his insane concerns were not being taken seriously by his own wife, Czeslaw took additional steps to prove to Grazyna that he was indeed the man of the house.
Czeslaw made his way to the basement of his home, where he lit a fire and threw two combustible containers upon the blaze.
And wouldn’t you know it, Czeslaw hadn’t clearly thought out his escape route before finalizing his plot, causing his house of – well, heavier materials than cards – to come down around him.
(I’ve been watching a lot of All in the Family recently, so I’m fighting the very strong impulse to make a Polish joke right now.)
Czeslaw suffered critical injuries after his explosive performance, which brought the house down.
Well... half of the house, at least.
After being airlifted to a hospital, Czeslaw is still being treated while sleeping the decision off in a coma.
Let this be a lesson to you: picnics are messy, and are often more trouble than they are worth. Especially if the result is having to rebuild your home.
Printed in the May 16, 2013 edition.
A Pew Research Center Survey reveals that public trust in local government is 63 percent and their opinion of their state government rose 5 percent this year to 57 percent. But the public’s trust in the federal government fell five points this year to a record low of 28 percent.
One sign of how bad the perception of the federal government has become is that even the mainstream media is beginning to ask embarrassing questions about the Benghazi Cover-Up. The congressional testimony of state department whistle blowers last week was riveting. Peter Wehner describes the Benghazi scandal in Commentary magazine as Barack Obama’s "Tower of Fabrications," ABC News reported that they obtained 12 different versions of the now discredited Benghazi talking points that show they were extensively edited as they evolved from the drafts first written entirely by the CIA to the final version distributed to Congress and to U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice before she appeared on five talk shows the Sunday after that attack.
On top of the Benghazi cover up, an IRS scandal emerged when the IRS official in charge of overseeing tax-exempt groups, acknowledged that the agency had targeted for special review groups promoting limited government and issued an apology. The extra IRS scrutiny was given to organizations seeking tax-exempt status if they had “tea party” or “patriot” in their name.
That story developed legs when it was revealed that IRS officials knew of the targeting of the groups as early as June 2011, nine months before the agency’s head told lawmakers it wasn’t occurring. The scandal has also spread to include not only Tea Party organizations, but the IRS also targeted pro-Israel groups and groups making statements that “criticize how the country is being run” and those that were involved in educating Americans “on the Constitution and Bill of Rights.”
In the wake of any industrial accident there follows a predictable chorus of pundits lamenting “market failure” in order to justify further interference of the state into every facet of business function. On the surface this might sound plausible, surely we need Big Brother looking over our employer’s shoulder to make sure everything is safe, right? The only problem with this narrative is that the pundits tend to conveniently omit the crucial fact that such disasters happened on the watch of government. There is no place in the world immune to at least some level of government oversight related to safety. Even in Bangladesh where there has been a recent spate of factory fires and building collapses they at least had building codes even if they weren’t followed. And there in lies the rub. The people entrust their government with the task of ensuring their safety (a dubious decision at best) but when that same government fails to adequately carry out that mandate and such failure is the proximate cause of some disaster oddly blame is 100 percent shouldered by the regulated entity rather than the regulator. If you had a jail in your community that routinely had prisoners escaping and killing people it seems like at some point the people running the prison should share in the culpability.
So whether it is financial misdeeds on Wallstreet, a factory explosion in West Texas, or a building collapse in Bangladesh, we see the same failure of the state regulators to do their job. But the regulators are just employees, they can’t be held personally liable. And their employer is the state, and the state can’t be held liable. So where does that leave us? No one is responsible. What is the solution? Rub some bacon on it – err I mean throw some more money at it (youtube.com/watch?v=wSReSGe200A).
Big and small, long and short, skinny and fat, fruits and vegetables come in all sizes. There are so many cultivars on the market that your head will spin just reading the labels. Which ones do you want or need? Want is certainly different than need. If you have a couple acres of rich soil, lots of time on your hands to tend to this acreage and the desire to impress your friends and neighbors, you can pick anything you want. But if you only have a small raised bed or even a patio where you can set containers to grow a few cherished lovelies to honor your dinner plate, then you need to keep reading. There are so many “dwarf” varieties of vegetables or fruits that you don’t need to be limited in what you put in your garden or containers.
While I was at the Madison Fest – what a gala event that was by the way – giving a talk on container gardening, folks asked me what vegetables they could grow in containers. They wanted to experience the great taste of fresh squash, eggplant, cucumbers, tomatoes or even potatoes, but they only had a small plot of soil or several containers to devote to this desire. My friends, there are many options – you will just have to spend a little time seeking out these plants or their seeds.
What is at the top of your wish list? To be sure tomatoes will be there. I know a couple folks who can’t eat a tomato but we will understand their dilemma and lovingly wish them well in life. Is there anything better than a fresh tomato on white bread smothered in mayonnaise? I can hear my doctor cringing at two of those options, but let’s get back to the healthy part – the tomatoes.
One surefire way to get your name in – or at least near – the news is to something stupid while stoned.
...or while mentally disturbed.
It really doesn’t matter to me.
As far as getting high goes, however, an apparently very normal thing to do while the brain is ridin’ high is to go back to our hunter-and-gatherer roots, scavenging for a bite of whatever can be found in the vicinity.
For Jeffrey Wagner, 50-year-old resident of Louisville, Ky., the nearest nourishment turned out to be carpet lint.
Wagner – admittedly – smoked up his meth before entering a Burlington Coat Factory, where he proceeded to the shoe section (because everyone knows that’s where the best lint lives), and went to town on the dust bunnies’ leftovers.
According to WHAS 11, Wagner claimed that he was “eating sparkles.”
In St. Petersburg, Fla., a short 900 miles away from Wagner, Jarvis Sutton was having similar difficulties but wasn’t lucky enough to find himself in a retail store.
Stranded at home, Sutton decided to call up his local emergency dispatch to request a delivery of “Kool-Aid, burgers, and weed.”
Yeah, that plan worked.
Instead, the officers made a delivery out of Sutton, taking him to the Pinellas County Jail.
Fortunately, however, Sutton was able to get a snack on the way to the lock-up by gnawing on the foam padding attached to the metal cage in the back of the cop car.
Drugs: your one-way ticket to Nunnsense.
Printed in the May 9, 2013 edition.
The look of this week's newspaper – and future issues of the Morgan County Citizen – is a direct result of what happens when Patrick sends Katie Walker and I to attend a design seminar.
I call it the "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie" effect. (Of course the daughter of a reading teacher coins the "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie" effect. If you haven't read this children's book, you should.)
Last month the brilliantly talented designer Katie – she's also the art director of our sister publication, Lake Oconee Living magazine – and I hauled ourselves to Columbus one morning to attend a Georgia Press Association-sponsored seminar by the god of newspaper design, Tim Harrower.
(To show you how much of a geek I am and how influential Mr. Harrower is in the newspaper world, I took my J-school text – purchased years ago for my Grady College design class at UGA – and had the man sign it. Yeah, I'm that girl.)
I woke at 4 a.m. to be at Katie's house by 6 a.m. so we could make it to Columbus around 9 a.m. A few coffee stops and one very sketchy bathroom break later, we found ourselves across the state, years from our days in the design lab at Grady, in a huge conference room at the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer listening, in awe, to the man that literally wrote the book on everything we know about design. (He's responsible for the look of The Oregonian; for more about him, if you're interested, see timharrower.com.)
We had to get over being star-struck real quick. The man that publications hire for design overhauls, Harrower was imparting some serious knowledge about not only print design, but also web design and applications.
We soaked it up and came back with way too many ideas. This week, though, we got to put the first of our ideas into action with a complete overhaul of the way our newspaper looks.