Bizarre crimes of 2014 highlight the odd, wacky side of law

Alleged criminals found new, and weird, ways to get in trouble with the law during 2014 – some of which made us laugh, cringe or cry.



11 Random THINGS THAT HAPPEN in life that put on the kibash


Think about the everyday things that happen… something breaks, a deadline looms, the car takes a bit to start, or the mail is late.

  1. Spill the food you just spent hours cooking on the floor
  2. A new person in the relationship breaks the date
  3. Kid puts something bad into their mouth and gets hurt
  4. Slip and fall
  5. Car breaks down
  6. Battery goes bad in car
  7. Run out of soap in the shower
  8. Get a heavy duty hangover
  9. Deadline is tomorrow
  10. Get Finger-Banged
  11. Mail delivery does not have what you are expecting

Fantastically Wrong: The Bizarre Mirages That Once Scared the Bejesus Out of Sailors | WIRED

Jesuit priests aren’t especially known for their heavy drug use, but it would seem that Father Domenico Giardina was tripping pretty hard on August 14, 1643. Looking out over the sea from Messina, Sicily, Giardina saw “a city all floating in the air, and so measureless and so splendid, so adorned with magnificent buildings, all of which was found on a base of a luminous crystal.” The metropolis suddenly transformed into a garden, and next a forest. And then in a flash it all descended into chaos. Huge armies sprang forth, as did the towns they had laid waste to, before the whole mess disappeared.

Read more:


Creative Writing: Exercises for Story Writers – from PSU

Creative Writing: Exercises for Story Writers – from PSU

SOURCE – Jim Manis – PSU

Short Story Exercises

  1. Write the first 250 words of a short story, but write them in ONE SENTENCE. Make sure that the sentence is grammatically correct and punctuated correctly. This exercise is intended to increase your powers in sentence writing.
  2. Write a dramatic scene between two people in which each has a secret and neither of them reveals the secret to the other OR TO THE READER.
  3. Write a narrative descriptive passage in a vernacular other than your own. Listen to the way people speak in a bar, restaurant, barber shop, or some other public place where folks who speak differently (“He has an accent!”) from you, and try to capture that linguistic flavor on the page.
  4. Play with sentences and paragraph structure: Find a descriptive passage you admire, a paragraph or two or three, from published material, and revise all the sentences. Write the passage using all simple sentences (no coordination, no subordination); write the passage using all complex-compound sentences; write the passage using varying sentence structure. The more ways you can think to play with sentence structure, the more you will become aware of how sentence structure helps to create pacing, alter rhythm, offer delight.
  5. Focus on verbs: Find a passage that you admire (about a page of prose) and examine all of the verbs in each sentence. Are the “active,” “passive,” “linking?” If they are active, are they transitive or intransitive? Are they metaphorical (Mary floated across the floor.)? What effects do verbs have on your reading of the passage?
  6. Take a passage of your own writing and revise all of the verbs in it. Do this once making all the verbs active, once making all the verbs passive. Then try it by making as many verbs as possible metaphorical (embedded metaphors).

Characters: There are two types of characters: well rounded and flat.

  1. Create character sketches. This is a good exercise to perform on a regular basis in your journal. Sometimes you can just create characters as they occur to you, at other times it is good to create characters of people you see or meet. Some of the best sketches are inspired by people you don’t really know but get a brief view of, like someone sitting in a restaurant or standing by a car that has been in an accident. Ask yourself who they are, what they are about. The fact that you don’t really know the person will free you up to make some calculated guesses that ultimately have more to say about your own vision of the world than they do about the real person who inspired the description. That’s okay, you are NOT a reporter, and ultimately the story you intend to tell is YOUR story.
  2. Write a character sketch strictly as narrative description, telling your reader who the character is without having the character do or say anything.
  3. Revise the above to deliver the character to the reader strictly through the character’s actions.
  4. Revise the above to deliver the character strictly through the character’s speech to another character.
  5. Revise the above to deliver the character strictly through the words/actions of another character (the conversation at the water fountain about the boss).
  6. Often when we call a character “flat” we mean that the author has failed in some way; however, many good stories require flat characters. Humor often relies on flat characters, but often minor characters in non-humorous pieces are also flat. These characters usually appear to help move the plot along in some way or to reveal something about the main character. A flat character is one who has only ONE characteristic. You can create whole lists of these and keep them in your journal so that you can call upon them when you need a character to fit into a scene.
  7. Young writers are prone to write autobiographical pieces. Instead of writing about people like yourself, try writing about someone who is drastically different in some way from you. Writing about someone who is a good deal older or younger than you will often free up your imagination. It helps to make sure you are delivering enough information to your reader so that the reader can clearly see the character and understand the character’s motives.
  8. Write a scene of about five hundred words in which a character does something while alone in a setting that is extremely significant to that character. Have the character doing something (dishes, laundry, filing taxes, playing a computer game, building a bird house) and make sure that YOU are aware that the character has a problem or issue to work out, but do NOT tell your reader what that is. 

This is a great one…..

The T.S. Eliot/John Gardner Killer Exercise: This exercise is quite possibly the most difficult, demanding and important exercise a writer can ever do. The poet and critic, T. S. Eliot, coined the phrase “objective correlative” to designate what he believed was the most important element in writing: Rendering the description of an object so that the emotional state of the character from whose point of view we receive the description is revealed WITHOUT ever telling the reader what that emotional state is or what has motivated it.

The late John Gardner, recognized in his lifetime as the leading creative writing teacher in the United States, developed the following exercise for students:

    A middle-age man is waiting at a bus stop. He has just learned that his son has died violently. Describe the setting from the man’s point of view WITHOUT telling your reader what has happened. How will the street look to this man? What are the sounds? Odors? Colors? That this man will notice? What will his clothes feel like? Write a 250 word description.


How about a couple CROWBAR KICK-STARTERS:::

Use one of these as a launching point for your story or for the exercise… Plop one right down in the middle of things….

  1.  …Stop biting your fingernails…
  2. …Its part of the foundations of society…
  3. …Missed lunch and it’s almost supper time…
  4. …It’s one thing to be talented, but add in being selfish…
  5. …We are all germ carriers…
  6. …What exactly were your expectations…
  7. …You have to take a firm stand…
  8. …Can I apologize for making such a scene…
  9. …I was smarter before the meeting…
  10. …Always saying nasty things about me…

Have a great day and keep on keeping on!……

LIFE CROWBARS – things to remix and write about…

Below are twenty things we have all thought about in some capacity. Take your character(s) and make one of them part of their story.

ChatterWhacky sketches
My son Mac and I doing some character sketches…

See if you can plug in some funny context with them.  Or take a couple and write/draw your characters having a conversation with one another.

  1. Play for keeps
  2. I like to feel needed
  3. Make us nervous
  4. Learn to be the best with what you got
  5. You think you are always right
  6. Life is full of disappointments
  7. Figure out your fears
  8. Opinions should have substance
  9. Focus your thinking
  10. I will be a good manager
  11. I create work that helps create jobs
  12. Would not want to lose it
  13. Will the emails ever stop coming
  14. You’re not listening
  15. You are always hanging around doing nothing
  16. She has a peculiar way about herself
  17. I can be pretty persuasive
  18. It takes all kinds
  19. Don’t kid yourself buddy
  20. Put them in their place

Iconic Symbols Of Famous People Inserted Into Their Names By Patrik Svensson

People are famous, but their signatures usually aren’t. Patric Svensson, a Swedish illustrator, aims to fix that by combining famous people’s names with icons of their fame. Some of these are really great and could serve as actual signatures.


See on

Why do we have so many words for yes and no?

A linguistic investigation into yup, yep, nah, and nope



….Then add MAYBE to the mix and it really gets crazy….


50 Ways to Map the City, Per Street and Graffiti Artists – Huffington Post

Street art is intrinsically bound with its neighborhood and location in a city. Context and placement are key.



Scientists Drill Through Antarctic Ice Shelf And Discover Bizarre ‘Lost World’

A “lost world” never seen or touched by mankind before has been discovered by a group of scientists using a hot-water drill and underwater robotic vehicles to


I am always feeling left out when I read about people discovering new worlds. I want to discover a new world. I just have to figure out how to do it at a coffee shop and with a laptop, after my kids go to bed at night, and I have finished my honey-do-list….


BioShock Fish Tank Brings Rapture To Your Goldfish – Tech Times

One Reddit user made his own 10-gallon BioShock-inspired fish tank, recreating Rapture for his home aquarium, complete with a Big Daddy and Little Sister, for his sole fish, a Betta.