February 02, 2007

LinkNews Digest [02/02/2007]

Python Makes Meal of 11 Guard Dogs

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 26 (Reuters Life!) - Guard dogs protecting a fruit orchard in Malaysia have met their match -- a 7.1-metre-long (23-ft-long) python that swallowed at least 11 hounds before it was finally discovered by villagers.

"I was shocked to see such a huge python," orchard-keeper Ali Yusof told the New Straits Times in an article published beneath a picture of the captured snake, which was almost long enough to span the width of a tennis court and as thick as a tree trunk.

Villagers did not harm the snake, which was tied to a tree then handed to wildlife officials, the paper said on Friday. (LINK )

Bitter Girlfriend Fatally Sabotages Other Woman's Parachute

A married woman who was having an affair with a fellow skydiver plunged 13,000ft (4,000m) to her death after her love rival and best friend tampered with her parachute, police say.

Els Van Doren, 37, fell to earth in a garden in front of a group of onlookers. Els Clottemans, 22, has been charged with her murder. Minutes earlier the pair had joined hands in a star formation with two other skydivers including Ms Clottemans’s boyfriend, a Dutchman named only as Marcel, who police say was having an affair with Mrs Van Doren.

While he and Ms Clottemans broke away at 4,000ft when their parachutes inflated, Mrs Van Doren, a mother of two, was unable to open either her main parachute or the reserve and crashed to her death in the town of Opglabbeek, Belgium. Her final moments were filmed by her own head-mounted camera.

Police say that video footage taken by Mrs Van Doren as she tried to open her parachute provided evidence that led them to suspect that a fellow club member had sabotaged the equipment. A spokesman said: "A close inspection of the parachutes leads us to believe they had been meddled with." An employee at the airfield in Zwarteberg added: "It is very rare for one parachute not to open, but for two to fail is virtually unheard of." (LINK )

Eagle's Eyes Prove Larger Than Its Freight Capacity

JUNEAU, Alaska - About 10,000 Juneau residents briefly lost power after a bald eagle lugging a deer head crashed into transmission lines.

"You have to live in Alaska to have this kind of outage scenario," said Gayle Wood, an Alaska Electric Light & Power spokeswoman. "This is the story of the overly ambitious eagle who evidently found a deer head in the landfill."

The bird, weighed down by the deer head, apparently failed to clear the transmission lines, she said. A repair crew found the eagle dead, the deer head nearby.(LINK )

Viagra-Spiked Wine Nearly Kills Husband

An Italian man keeled over with a heart attack and almost died after his wife slipped Viagra pills into his wine hoping it would improve his performance in bed.

Fifty-five-year-old construction worker Frederico di Angelino from Frosinone in central Italy said: 'I had been under stress because of my job for quite a while and my 50-year-old wife felt a bit abandoned.

'She tried to secretly give me a bit of extra "motivation" in bed with two pills of Viagra in a glass of wine.' He was treated by doctors who confirmed he had suffered a massive heart attack. Di Angelino added: 'I'm not angry with her over it.' (LINK )

Obi-Wan's Robe To Be Auctioned

{PHOTO} The cloak worn by Sir Alec Guinness in Star Wars, along with Madonna's dresses from Evita and several of James Bond's suits are to go under the hammer.

Costumes from productions including the Indiana Jones films, Titanic and Doctor Who will also be auctioned on 6 March. Some 350 lots are being sold by London-based costume maker Angels. Bonhams auctioneers said the cloak was expected to surpass its £50,000 reserve price. Guinness, who played Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars, died in 2000.

The true value of Guinness's cloak was not appreciated for some years after the film and it was available for hire as part of a monk's costume. Another surprise was found in the pocket of third Doctor Who John Pertwee's jacket in the form of an original sonic screwdriver - in reality a silver pen with a toothpaste cap glued to it. (LINK )

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