It feels strange to launch right into an irreverent rundown of this week’s “quirky stories from the week prior” without at least acknowledging the tragedy in Uvalde. I posted my bit on Friday and we’ve since learned more about the incompetence of the unresponsive 911 operators and local police. We’ve suffered the idiotic responses from Trump, the NRA and the usual “rope-a-dope” from members of the GOP. When will this uniquely American insanity end?
So here’s what else happened.
The Nonhuman Rights Project filed a petition with the New York Supreme Court for legal personhood for Happy, an 47-year old elephant in the Bronx Zoo. If successful, Happy will be ruled unlawfully imprisoned and released to an elephant sanctuary.
The last pay phone was removed from New York City streets and will be added to the permanent collection at the Museum of the City of New York. The rollout of advertising-supported, internet-enabled, WiFi
surveillance beacons kiosks finished its citywide rollout. (Update: Roberto shares that there are a few “working” pay phones left thx to sleuthing by The Payphone Project)
A capitol rioter was denied his request to attend a “work-related conference” (his words) in Cabo San Lucas due to his “ill-advised domestic travel in January 2021” (judge’s response) to invade the Capitol.
The federal Disinformation Governance Board was broken up after falling prey to a “textbook disinformation campaign.”
Hyundai is recalling 239,000 vehicles because of the propensity of the seatbelts to explode in the event of a crash.
Things are about to get real for fish & chip fans in the United Kingdom. The National Federation of Fish Friers warned that supplies of sunflower oil (Ukraine) cod, and haddock (Russia) are in short supply and may cause up to a third of “chippies” to close up shop. Starbucks finally threw in the towel and is pulling out of Russia but more remain.
A town in rural Japan is short $360,000 in Covid relief funds after a municipal official mistakenly wired the entire town’s allotment to a single person who gambled it all away online. Thankfully, the town was able to recover 90% of what was lost when one company returned the amount he lost.
There are now more AirBNB listings than places for rent in NYC.