Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, December 13th - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Mad Minute stories from Tuesday, December 13th

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WESTLAND, Mich. (AP) -- A suburban Detroit family is conceding that it can't match the neighbors' holiday display.
The Detroit News reports that Jami Kelly used plywood and a few strings of white lights to form the word "Ditto" with an arrow pointing toward the home next-door in Westland.
The 34-year-old says her family started doing its own light display, but realized that the creation couldn't compare. She says: "Nothing measures up."
Kelly's neighbors have an elaborate display, including reindeer, a large snow globe and a huge bear on the roof. Kelly says she got the idea for her own display online.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Scores of ones and zeroes stolen from addresses mounted on the homes of Philadelphia residents have been returned.
The news website Billy Penn reports that a white trash bag containing 83 metal address markers was left Monday night at the east Kensington home of Meghan Haley.
Haley earlier released surveillance footage of a man and woman going around the neighborhood in September ripping zeroes and ones off the front of homes.
She says she doesn't know whether the bag containing 56 ones and 27 zeroes was returned by the thieves or by a good Samaritan who found the numbers.
But then, she and other neighbors don't know why the numbers were taken - though they suspected that it may have been for some kind of art installation.

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MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - Police in one Alabama city said they helped stage a man's arrest so that he could really just kneel down and propose to his terrified girlfriend.
With the help of two officers, Daiwon McPherson, 33, tricked his girlfriend, Shawna Blackmon, into thinking he was on the run and had a gun. The officers converged on the couple and other members of their biker community outside a gas station Friday night. Blackmon said the scenario seemed real.
"I was scared," Blackmon, 28, told WPMI-TV. "I said he was going to jail, they are going to shoot him."
A video viewed nearly 10 million times online by Monday shows the officers rushing up to the couple with stun guns, ordering McPherson down. Blackmon, terrified, stands between them with her hands up. Then, McPherson asks her to take his 'gun' from his pocket. She pulls out an engagement ring instead, and is overcome with emotion as one of the officers holsters his stun gun and hugs her.
"I really wanted to bring the bike life and the police together," McPherson told Al.com. "I can't believe I actually pulled this off."
The stunt has launched a lively online debate about whether this was a public relations win for the Mobile Police Department, or a risky escapade that could have gone wrong.
Police spokesman Terrence Perkins said McPherson approached police earlier in the day with the idea, which was run up the chain of command for approval from an assistant police chief.
Perkins, who attended the stunt to ensure all went smoothly, said no guns were involved and added that the Tasers weren't loaded. Police also made sure the scene was safe by informing all other on-duty officers about the scene before the fake call went out.
"At no time was he placed in any danger or anyone on the scene," Perkins said.
Perkins said police have received some negative comments but that the positive feedback far outweighed the negative. "It actually showed us outside the capacity of writing tickets. It showed that we do have human side as well," the police spokesman said.

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Here's a chance to get the kids to put down the iPads - and parents to put aside their dignity.
Behold one of the more off-the-wall holiday offerings this year: the Pony Up Daddy, a neoprene saddle that allows children to ride on daddy's back.
The Velcro saddle, which costs $24.99 and comes in four different colors, promises to help avoid the torn shirts and broken jewelry that can happen when a child doesn't have a proper seat to ride an adult.
The goofy device also encourages children not to hold back when going for a ride.
"Hey kids, yank, tug and pull all you want…The Pony Up Daddy can take it!" the ad says.
The product also comes in a size to fit women, because mommy deserves a herniated disk, too!
The reviews on Amazon range from "My kids love this thing!" to "We are currently taking a break from the Daddy Saddle as I prepare for back surgery."

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- A 33-year-old woman's quick instincts likely saved her life when a boat oar crashed through the driver's side windshield of her sports utility vehicle as she drove on Florida's Alligator Alley.
Christina Kay Theisen tells the SunSentinel she's glad she wasn't on her phone or changing the radio station Friday afternoon as she drove home following a business trip.
The Florida Highway Patrol says the oar either dropped from a recreational vehicle as Theisen passed by, or it kicked up from the asphalt. It struck the front end of her Chevy Suburban before going through the windshield.
Theisen says she quickly ducked to the right and was able to keep control of the vehicle.
Lt. Greg Bueno says the case is closed unless more information about the RV becomes available.

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A widely-shared video posted to YouTube Saturday appears to show a pastor, who's well known for previous public protests, telling kids waiting in line at an Amarillo mall that Santa isn't real. 
In the video, a man identifying himself as David Grisham of "Last Frontier Evangelism" said, "We're going to tell the children here today the truth that there is no Santa Claus and that Christmas is about Jesus Christ."
Grisham has previously gained notoriety in 2010 for attempting to burn a copy of the Quran in an Amarillo park, NBC News reported. He was thwarted by a 23-year-old skateboarder who grabbed the Muslim holy book from Grisham.
In Saturday's video, Grisham walked up to a line of parents and kids waiting to see Santa and yelled, "There is no such thing as Santa Claus. Santa Claus does not exist."
The video ends with several parents confronting Grisham and asking him to leave. 
"Shut up," one parent says.
Another asks Grisham to "quit talking this mess." 
"There is a Santa," someone shouts. 
One Facebook page for Last Frontier Evangelism appeared to be unavailable Monday morning, but another page for the group had shared the video with the comment: "Mark Zuckerberg and his band of GESTAPO censors at Facebook took down the original of this post."
While not mentioned in Saturday's video, Grisham is also the director of "Repent Amarillo," according to the Amarillo Globe-News. That organization has been categorized as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

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Waverly, NE - Here's a high school basketball game that just didn't want to go away.
Last week, it was the Waverly Vikings and the Blair Bears.
The game was tied 50-50 with time running out, and it looked like Blair would win with a three-pointer from beyond half-court, but the whistle had blown before the shot.
Then Blair tried to in-bound the ball, but it's stolen by Waverly. But a time-out was called just before the Vikings made the half-court three-pointer that would have been the game winner.
So they tried a third time. Waverly in-bounded the ball to Merrick Deger in the left corner. He was a long way from the basket, but not out of his range. Deger's shot was off the glass, but right on target for the game winner. His 3-pointer earned Waverly a 53-50 win over Blair.
The shortest of the three shots was the one that really counted.

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- With two-thirds of Philadelphia International Airport technically located in Delaware County, terminals within that designation will not be subjected to the city's controversial soda tax.
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Mayor Jim Kenney signed into law a 1.5-cent-per-ounce tax on sugary and diet beverages purchased within city limits in June.
The tax, which amounts to 18 cents on a 12-ounce can of soda, does not apply in the three Pennsylvania counties surrounding Philadelphia.
Because Terminals A East and A West reside in Tinicum Township, beverages sold there would not be open to the tax.
City spokeswoman Lauren Hitt says officials don't expect this to cause confusion because retailers are well aware of what side of the county line they fall because they must similarly comply with other Philadelphia taxes.

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BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say a 53-year-old Florida man faces charges after he extracted 10 teeth without anesthetic and made dentures during house calls to save people money.
The Bradenton Herald reports Robert "Robbie" Rheinlander claimed he was a dentist in South Carolina before moving to Florida. He was arrested Wednesday on a charge of practicing dentistry without a license.
A couple told a Manatee County Sheriff's detective in September that Rheinlander extracted the woman's tooth, leaving a tooth fragment that caused medical problems. When they researched Rheinlander, they found he wasn't a dentist.
He was arrested after an undercover detective arranged to meet him for dental work. Jail records don't indicate whether Rheinlander has a lawyer.
Records show Rheinlander was licensed as a dental technician in South Carolina between 2004 and 2006.

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Halifax, Canada - After hundreds of sit-ups, pull-ups, jumping jacks and more, three generations of martial artists in Canada officially have their black belts, including a 72-year-old grandmother.
72-year-old Hannah Fraser has been practicing taekwondo for about 4 years.
This was her chance to qualify for her black belt. To get it, she had to fight her own daughter. 
"I want to show her a good fight," said her daughter, Adelle Fraser. "I want her to show her moves, I hope she does a cut kick and stops one of my spinning kicks."
Fraser is the latest in her family to try out for the honor, her daughter Adelle, her son in law Eric, and her grandkids Kyle and Sonja all have their black belts. 
Fraser began her training after a heart attack. 
Master Wooyung Jung took her on as a student, for free. Jung was already teaching Fraser's family taekwondo, so he developed a special program to get Hannah back on her feet and fighting fit. 
"Compared to most people her age, she is much fitter and stronger than the average senior," said Master Wooyung Jung.
She's come a long way since she first donned her taekwondo uniform, and can now fight off an armed assailant, compete in hand to hand combat with her black-belt daughter, and split wood with her hands and feet.
But in the final test, she did something she had never done before, breaking concrete, not once, but twice. 
Fraser says now it's time to start training for her second degree black-belt.
The martial arts matriarch can take that test in a year. 
 

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