Mad Minute

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — A man who graduated from the University of Michigan in 1969 has finally received a congratulatory telegram from family friends that was sent more than 50 years ago.

Robert Fink received the Western Union telegram this year. Western Union ended its telegram business in 2006. The Washington Post first reported on the telegram finally being delivered to Fink.

The telegram originally arrived in 1969 at an Ann Arbor apartment Fink shared with three classmates a day after he had left to attend graduate school in New York.

Christina Zaske rediscovered the telegram in December after removing the bottom drawer of an old filing cabinet now owned by Ann Arbor-based digital marketing agency ICON Interactive to retrieve a piece of paper that had fallen inside.

“I looked inside, mostly because I was curious to see an actual telegram,” Zaske told The Ann Arbor News.

Zaske saw Fink’s name on the paper and used the internet to find him and return the note. Fink is now a professor at Oakland University in Rochester, a Detroit suburb that’s about 45 miles northeast of Ann Arbor.

“I was surprised to learn that he had never received the telegram and was glad that I could reunite it with its intended recipient all of these years later,” Zaske said.

Fink said the letter has brought back memories and made him reflect on his old connections.

“The theme for me has been that the long arm of the past is reaching out and grabbing me, and I should take it seriously,” he said.

Fink said he’s regretful he never had the chance to thank Ben and Lillian Fischman for sending the telegram, noting that they’ve both died.

“It also left me with a funny sense of guilt that they had thought about me that way,” Fink said. “It took some effort to send a telegram — it’s not like texting someone. It touched me they had thought about me and made the effort to do so.”


BOSTON (AP) — A Massachusetts doctor who pleaded with CVS to change its on-hold jingle is getting his wish.

The Boston Globe reports a spokeswoman for the pharmacy chain said Friday the company is in the process of updating its voice-response phone system, including the on-hold music that Dr. Steven Schlozman so hated.

The child psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital penned a tongue-in-cheek letter to WBUR-FM last year saying the music haunted him "day and night."

The letter sparked a nationwide debate with some people praising the music and others sharing Schlozman's sentiments.

Schlozman says he thinks it's great CVS is making the change.

CVS spokeswoman Amy Lanctot did not clarify whether the company is replacing the tune or improving sound quality.

She says the new system should be complete later this year.


FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Fargo police are investigating a bank robbery by a man who was wearing a graduation robe.

Police say the male suspect walked into Alerus Financial about 8 a.m. Friday and produced a note that said "give me money or I'll shoot." Authorities say the man did not show a weapon. He was wearing a maroon or red graduation gown and fled on foot with an undetermined amount of cash.

KFGO reports police are combing the neighborhood, parking lots and trash bins.


TUPELO, Miss. (AP) — Friends and relatives of inmates in a northeast Mississippi jail can no longer bring them clothing after drugs were found hidden in some clothes.

Local news outlets report Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson changed the policy after finding narcotics sewn into socks.

Officials are charging a woman, 22-year-old Emily Yingling of Blue Springs, with introducing contraband into a jail. Two inmates also face charges — 27-year-old James Eaton of Saltillo and 38-year-old Randell Button of Blue Springs. It's unclear if any of the three has a lawyer

Johnson says inmates now must buy underwear, socks and T-shirts from the jail commissary.

The sheriff says the jail previously allowed people to bring Bibles to inmates, but stopped that too after finding a weapon hidden in one and cocaine sewn into another.


(FOX) This little piggy may have run away, but all it took was an Ohio police officer offering up some leftover pizza to get him back home.

It was not immediately clear if he went "wee wee wee" all the way there.

The Xenia Police Department shared on Facebook video of the unique Saturday encounter, which began when the pig, named Wilbur, became separated from his family.

"Every day is an adventure here at Xenia PD," the department wrote.

The department said it had been a couple of years since they had to deal with "runaway swine," but Officer Dan Smith was tasked with trying to bring Wilbur back home.​

Smith used some leftover pizza in order to coax the pig towards his police vehicle before using a "little muscle" to finally get him inside.

The department said that Wilbur was "taken into custody without being injured" and was eventually reunited with his family.


(FOX) A Pennsylvania man who was seemingly not in the Christmas spirit last week was arrested after he allegedly assaulted a man for singing festive songs, according to reports.

Clayton Lucas, 25, was a passenger in a car driving down Route 28 in East Deer Township, northeast of Pittsburgh, on March 4 when the altercation broke out, KDKA reported, citing a criminal complaint.

The driver of the car reportedly was singing Christmas carols, which upset Lucas. He allegedly "reached around the driver's seat and began choking him" to the point where he almost lost consciousness, according to the news outlet.

When Pennsylvania State Police tried to arrest Lucas, he allegedly wouldn't cooperate and refused to listen to their orders, before he eventually was taken into custody.

Lucas, according to WTAE, was charged with aggravated assault, among other offenses.


March 11 (UPI) -- An Ohio man is taking inspiration from the monks of yesteryear with his unusual Lent fast: Giving up all food and drinks except for beer.

Del Hall, who works at the Fifty West brewery in Dayton, said he will not eat or drink anything except beer for all 46 days of Lent.

Hall said he was inspired by monks from the 1600s, who would make a special bock beer for Lent.

"Being master brewers, they decided they would take a popular style of beer in Germany, bock beer, make it extra hearty and that would be their liquid bread and that's what they call it," Hall told WKRC-TV. "So the monks in Bavaria, they would call doppelbock liquid bread and basically it would sustain them through the 46 days of Lent."

Hall said he is altering the monks' tradition by including all types of beer in his fast.

"I've done big challenges but this seems very daunting," Hall said. "So I'm just curious if I'm up to the challenge, if I'm going to be able to do it or not."

Hall is documenting his beer fast on his YouTube channel, where he said he is already starting to see weight loss from the unusual diet.


(FOX) A Nebraska state trooper was in for quite a surprise when he came across a car made entirely of snow.

In a video posted to Twitter by the state patrol on Saturday, Sgt. Mick Downing was heard coming across the discovery, which he apparently likened to a Ford Mustang.

"What in the heck?" the trooper is heard saying.

"Some people make snowmen," Downing continued. "Not the people in the northwest corner of the panhandle — they make snow cars, snow Mustangs."


March 11 (UPI) -- A New Jersey man is fielding a flood of calls and text messages after his sons took out a billboard asking people to send him birthday greetings.

Chris Ferry said he woke early one morning at his Linwood home to phone calls from birthday well-wishers who told him they had seen a billboard bearing his photo and phone number, with a message asking viewers to wish him a happy birthday.

Ferry, who turns 62 March 16, said he knew his sons were behind the prank even before he knew they had signed the billboard.

"I'm probably up to about 10,000 calls, voicemails and texts," Ferry told KYW Newsradio.

He said some people just want to give him a quick birthday greeting, but others engage him in conversation.

"They get me on the phone, they want to talk to me, they want to tell me about their most memorable birthday," he said. "People say, 'I lost my dad last year.' I had one guy tell me 'I tried to call my father to tell him about the billboard and he didn't pick up, so I figured I would call you to talk to you and now you're not picking up.'"

Ferry's son, Christopher Ferry Jr., said he and his brother, who both live in Florida, wanted to make their dad's birthday special.

"We wanted it to be a birthday for him to remember," he said. "Yeah, there was a little piece of me that was scared at first, putting his phone number out there, but we thought to ourselves 'go big or go home.''


March 11 (UPI) -- A father and son out cycling near a Missouri school made an unusual discovery -- an alligator in the middle of the trail.

Jason Stratton said he and his son, AJ, were riding their bicycles on the Greenways Trail, right behind Carver Middle School, when he received a series of text messages and calls from the boy, who had was on the trail ahead of him.

Stratton went to the location specified by his son and found the boy and some hikers staring at an alligator in the middle of the trail.

The father said he decided to pick the gator up to prevent it from running away.

"None of them had picked it up yet, and had it been any bigger, I wouldn't have messed with it. I would have waited for Animal Control, but it really wasn't that big or all that active," Stratton told the Springfield News-Leader. "It was pretty calm. It seemed to be very healthy and well-fed, so I don't think it had been loose in the wild for very long."

An Animal Control officer was summoned to take custody of the animal, and Stratton said she was equally shocked to see the gator.

"If I could have gotten a picture of the expression on that girl's face when she first got there, it was quite apparent she had never had an alligator call here in Springfield before," he said.

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