Mad Minute stories from Friday, June 10th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Friday, June 10th

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LONDON (AP) -- Officials at a wildlife hospital say a seagull turned bright orange after falling into a vat of chicken tikka masala in Wales.
The gull was likely scavenging for food when it became stuck in the thick sauce.
The bird was rescued and taken to Vale Wildlife Hospital near Tewkesbury, a town about 110 miles (177 km) west of London. Staff cleaned the seagull until it returned to its original color, but said it still smelled spicy the following day.
Caroline Gould, who founded the wildlife hospital, has nicknamed the gull David Dickinson, after the British TV presenter known for his tanned complexion.

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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) -- A former speaker of the New Hampshire House is running for a new office - by running against it.
Salem Republican Donna Sytek, who served 23 years in the House before retiring in 2000, signed up this week to run for Rockingham County register of probate. Her platform? Eliminate the obscure, essentially meaningless position.
"We have a title with hardly any responsibilities," said Sytek. "I said, 'That's a job for me! I can do that!'"
In the past, registers of probate in each county oversaw the administration of courts that handled estates, name changes and adoptions and managed all estate records. After a 2011 reorganization to streamline the judicial system, the county probate, district and family courts were folded into the circuit court system, and the number of clerks was reduced from 52 to 18.
But because the state constitution requires the election of registers of probate, lawmakers retained the position, stripped away virtually all its responsibilities and set the annual salary at $100 per year - compared to the roughly $100,000 in salary and benefits the state paid to the full-time registers.
In 2014, a Dartmouth College senior won the Grafton County seat with 20 votes after his fraternity brothers launched an impromptu write-in campaign on Election Day.
Sytek is pushing for a constitutional amendment to eliminate the position. It takes a three-fifths vote of the Legislature and two-thirds vote by the electorate to amend the constitution.
"Voters ought to be given an opportunity to look at this and say whether this historical title that is now meaningless should be taken from the constitution," she said. "When I tell people about this, they say, 'What? There's an office that has no responsibilities and pays $100 a year? Sign me up!'"
Under state law, a probate register's only remaining duty is identifying historically significant documents and sending them to the state archives. In at least one county, the register has never even been to the courthouse, said longtime probate Judge David King. In other counties, the positions are held by former full-time registers who now work for the courts in other capacities.
Having the register of probate positions be elected didn't make sense even under the old system, said King.
"It's hard to run a court, when your clerks - which is really what the registers are - have to run for office every two years," he said.
He said he has great respect for Sytek and hopes her effort succeeds.

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JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) -- A man getting ready to watch the sunrise on a piece of plywood in a marina was swept out by the Hudson River current and wound up about 2 nautical miles away near Governors Island.
The man was sent drifting into the river on an 8-foot-long piece of plywood on Thursday around 4:45 a.m., a little more than half an hour before the sun came up, Fire Department of New York Capt. Louis Guzzo said.
"At first, we just thought it was debris," Guzzo said. "You wouldn't put this thing on a lake much less New York Harbor."
The man told rescuers from fire department marine units that he went out to the dock at the Newport Yacht Club and Marina in Jersey City to watch the sun come up.
Guzzo said he believes the man stayed on the piece of wood because he didn't want to jump into the water and lose his cellphone while swimming back. Instead, Guzzo said, the man stayed in the center of the plywood as it floated farther into the harbor's highly traveled commercial lanes.
"It was pretty choppy, and the wind was pretty strong," Guzzo said.
The man, whose name wasn't disclosed, was rescued unharmed about a quarter-mile from Governors Island, a 172-acre island in the heart of the harbor close to lower Manhattan and Brooklyn.
Guzzo said the man was very happy to see the rescue team and hugged members of Marine Unit 1 after he was pulled onboard.

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island's governor has signed a law to help bakers buy wine in bulk for use in making crunchy Italian-American treats called wine biscuits.
A spokeswoman says Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo (ray-MAHN'-doh) signed the legislation into law on Monday.
Wine biscuits are cookies commonly sold by Rhode Island's Italian-American bakeries but are difficult to find elsewhere. Bakers mix wine into dough to create them.
The law creates a wine biscuit license letting bakers each buy up to 2,000 gallons of wine a year from wholesalers. It had been proposed for years by baker and Democratic North Providence Town Councilwoman Kristen Catanzaro, who didn't want to have to make trips back and forth to a liquor store for wine.
Supporters say it was a way to update antiquated state liquor laws.

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NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) - Kenya's power generation company says a monkey caused a three-hour nationwide blackout.
The Kenya Electricity Generation Company said in a statement late Tuesday that a monkey climbed onto the roof of the Gitaru Power Station in central Kenya and fell onto a transformer, tripping it.
The company said this caused other machines in the station to trip, resulting in the loss of 180MW from the plant, triggering a national blackout. The statement did not say whether the monkey survived.
The blackout lasted more than three hours Tuesday before power was restored.
The company said that its facility is secured with an electric fence, and that this was an isolated incident.

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Surveillance video from a bank robbery in Montgomery County, Maryland, showed a bearded man pass a threatening note to a teller before part of his disguise fell off his face.
Police said officers were called the SunTrust Bank in Rockville just before noon on June 2. Detectives said bank workers saw the man enter the bank, approach a teller and passed a note, threatening the teller with an explosive device.
During the robbery, the man's fake beard fell from his face, revealing his true features underneath. Police are hoping someone recognizes the man in the video. Investigators said the man also has a tattoo on his right forearm.
Police said the man obtained an undisclosed amount of cash and fled the bank.

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MIDLOTHIAN, Va. - Clayton Litten was sitting on his toilet, admiring his newly tiled bathroom floor when he first saw it.
"This cannot be. There's no way," Litten said when he saw the image. "Clear as day."
An image of presidential candidate Donald Trump, standing with arms folded, emerged from the tile floor.
"What are the odds?" Litten said. "One in a trillion?"
When Litten asked the workers remodeling his bathroom if they too saw Trump in the tile, he said they all agreed - they saw the Donald.
"It's a perfect image of him!" Litten said.
Litten, a Republican who planned to vote for Trump this fall, said he sent the image of his floor to the Trump campaign.
He said he hoped the man himself would stop by for a visit when he arrived in town to campaign Friday.
"I have not yet heard from anyone yet," Litten said.
Workers for the company that installed the floor said people can see all sorts of images in tile, "sort of like when people see objects in clouds."
In the meantime,  Litten, who said he was dying of lung cancer,  is holding out hope Trump would see this story and pay him a visit.

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ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) -- New York state may soon allow pet owners to spend eternity with their furry companions.
The state Legislature has passed a bill allowing cemeteries, except for religious ones, to offer people the option of being buried with the cremated remains of a dog, cat or other tame domesticated animal.
Cemeteries wouldn't be required to allow pet remains.
Supporters say they expect many pet owners will embrace the idea. They say cemeteries should be free to offer the option.
The proposal is the latest in a series of measures honoring the bond between human and beast. Last year, New York lawmakers passed a law allowing dogs on restaurant patios. They also are considering a ban on cat declawing.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo hasn't weighed in on the cemetery bill.

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COLLIER COUNTY, Fl - A Collier County man called 911 on Monday night because his girlfriend wouldn't buy him vodka. He told dispatch his neighbors were fighting and yelling.
When deputies showed up, there was no yelling, and there was no scene. 
Deputies said it was a prank, and neighbors said it wasn't funny.
Each time a deputy is sent to a non-emergency call, that's the taxpayer's dollars spent and the officers' time wasted.
Here's how the 911 call went: 
Operator: "Collier County 911. What is the status of your emergency?"
Jack Means: "Uh sorry. It's not what I'd call a true emergency, but it's the same b-s."
But it's not the same because two Collier County sheriff's deputies were dispatched to a non-emergency.
According to the report, the caller Jack Means, was drunk. He was angry when his girlfriend wouldn't buy him alcohol, so he decided to call 911.
According to the report, deputies spent more than an hour on this non-emergency call.
Jack Means was charged with a misdemeanor for misusing 911.

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) - Police have rescued and found a home for a kitten found stranded in the middle of a Louisiana bridge.
Causeway General Manager Carlton Dufrechou (DOO'-fruh-shoh) says a commuter called the bridge authority Tuesday afternoon to report seeing the kitten on the northbound span of the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway about a half-mile from Metairie.
Dufrechou says Officer Shenandoah Jones rescued the kitten, which seems to be OK except for a small bruise on its chin.
Dufrechou thinks the animal must have been hiding in the engine compartment of a large car or SUV and fell out, or someone tossed the kitten from a moving car.
Dufrechou says a bridge dispatcher has adopted the kitten, which the Causeway employees have named "Miracle."
 

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