December 15, 2006

LinkNews Digest [12/15/2006]

Hunter Hits, Eats 7-Legged Hermaphrodite Deer

FOND DU LAC, Wis. -- Rick Lisko hunts deer with a bow, but got his most unusual one driving his truck down his mile-long driveway. The young buck had nub antlers and seven legs. Lisko said it also had both male and female reproductive organs.

"It was definitely a freak of nature," Lisko said. "I guess it's a real rarity." When he looked at the animal, he noticed three- to four-inch appendages growing from the rear legs. Later, he found a smaller appendage growing from one of the front legs.

"It's a pretty weird deer," he said, describing the extra legs as resembling "crab pinchers. It kind of gives you the creeps when you look at it," he said, but he thought he saw the appendages moving, as if they were functional, before the deer was hit.

"And by the way, I did eat it," Lisko said. "It was tasty."(LINK )

25% of 109th Congressional Bills Were Naming Buildings

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Despite criticism for adjourning last week without acting on several major legislative initiatives, members of Congress can boast significant achievements in at least one area of federal lawmaking -- naming post offices.

Of the 383 pieces of legislation that were signed into law during the two-year 109th Congress, more than one-quarter dealt with naming or renaming federal buildings and structures -- primarily post offices -- after various Americans.

Three post offices were named after entertainers. Ray Charles, the late singer and musician, was honored with a post office in Los Angeles in July 2005 in a bill sponsored by Rep. Diane Watson, D-California Rep. Henry Waxman, D-California, authored a law naming another Los Angeles post office after actor and former American Express pitchman Karl Malden.

And in March, Congress passed and the president signed legislation naming a Smithfield, North Carolina, post office after actress Ava Gardner. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Bob Etheridge, D-North Carolina.

Several members of the U.S. military killed in Iraq or Afghanistan were honored with post offices, and the late civil rights leader Rosa Parks was honored with a federal building in Detroit, Michigan.

And one of the final actions Congress took before adjourning early Saturday was naming a Delaware bridge after that state's long-time GOP Sen. William Roth.(LINK )

Tunisian Nomads Living in Tatooine Sets

What seemed to be just another pile of desert rocks, gradually, as we approached, took the shape of the rockets, satellites and spheres of the 1976 "Star Wars'" production, the real-life science fiction amid the ancient desert. Breathless and with my heart pounding, I wandered around the abandoned set, looking at the inscriptions "Mike and Lucy were here, 1987" or "Luke, I love you! Jessie, 2001."

As I peered inside one of the impeccably built constructions, I noticed a mattress and a small teapot on the sand floor. In a mere moment, the "owner" of the house was there: an elder Arab man dressed in a typical desert fashion.

Surprisingly, his French was perfect and he explained to me that since he had neither family nor money, he came to live in the movie set. He looks after the place, the real roof of the fake house protects him from the sandstorms, and if a tourist throws him a small coin every once in a while, he can buy some more tea and some food. And he is hardly the only one living in the Lucas-built wonderland in the middle of the Sahara.

The set guardian offered us some Tunisian tea, but it was time to move on, because the sun had already disappeared behind the blurred horizon of the desert and the wind was growing stronger. As we drove off, I couldn't help but think that Anakin Skywalker and company would arrive at their property any minute and start negotiations on saving the universe, or something along those lines. (LINK )

"Santa Claus Conquers the Martians" Enters Public Domain

Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964) is considered to be one of the worst movies ever made. It is so bad, that it is actually fun to watch. The filmmakers were probably too embarrassed to renew the copyright, so it’s now in the public domain.

The story shows how Santa Claus is kidnapped by Martians to cheer up the Martian children. The rumor is that the movie was shot in abandoned aircraft hangars in New Jersey. It is clear that the movie had an extremely low budget, it even has spelling errors in the opening credits (custume designer).

The movie is currently ranked 80 in the list of worst movies ever made. A remake of this classic has been announced, but it will certainly never beat the original. (LINK )


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