UK cops say suspect has refused to poop for 3 weeks

I poop about three times a day.

Probably not the image you wanted, but it affects my ability to go for a morning run, and dates back to working construction 40 years ago (corn silks can be versatile).

Essex Police in the UK are on #poowatch and tweeting about it. This after a suspected drug dealer believed to have drugs hidden in his body has now for 21 days refused to poop. The BBC reports the 24-year-old was arrested Jan. 17 and has been under supervision since then, with the department’s Operation Raptor team that arrested him providing updates like this one, tweeted Wednesday: “Day 21/3 weeks for our man on #poowatch still no movements/items to report, he will remain with us until Friday when we are back at court where we will be requesting a further 8 days should he not produce anything before that hearing.”

Last Friday they tweeted that the man is being watched by doctors and was in fine health at the time. Per the BBC, police decided to keep the public informed of the man’s bowel movements in an effort to quash any illusions that drug dealing is “glamorous.”

Internet: Freedom’s just another word

Irony can be ironic sometimes.

This morning I was e-mail chatting with a friend, talking about how I took Madelynn, who is now 30-years-old, to a Grateful Dead concert north of Toronto when she was six-weeks -old.

Later today, word came that Dead songwriter and Internet activist John Perry Barlow had passed at the age of 70.

I was fortunate enough to have met Barlow three or four times in the early 1990s, when he was creating a stir about Internet freedom – even before Al Gore had invented it – at the SIGGRAPH annual meetings.

That’s Special Interest Group – Graphics, which now dominate Western media and culture.

I got to hang out with the Pixar execs, knew why shadows from a lamp named Luxo were special, and have a beverage or two with Barlow.

With a broken heart I have to announce that EFF’s founder, visionary, and our ongoing inspiration, passed away quietly in his sleep this morning. We will miss Barlow and his wisdom for decades to come, and he will always be an integral part of EFF.

It is no exaggeration to say that major parts of the Internet we all know and love today exist and thrive because of Barlow’s vision and leadership. He always saw the Internet as a fundamental place of freedom, where voices long silenced can find an audience and people can connect with others regardless of physical distance.

Barlow was sometimes held up as a straw man for a kind of naive techno-utopianism that believed that the Internet could solve all of humanity’s problems without causing any more. As someone who spent the past 27 years working with him at EFF, I can say that nothing could be further from the truth. Barlow knew that new technology could create and empower evil as much as it could create and empower good. He made a conscious decision to focus on the latter: “I knew it’s also true that a good way to invent the future is to predict it. So I predicted Utopia, hoping to give Liberty a running start before the laws of Moore and Metcalfe delivered up what Ed Snowden now correctly calls ‘turn-key totalitarianism.’”

Barlow’s lasting legacy is that he devoted his life to making the Internet into “a world that all may enter without privilege or prejudice accorded by race, economic power, military force, or station of birth . . . a world where anyone, anywhere may express his or her beliefs, no matter how singular, without fear of being coerced into silence or conformity.”

In the days and weeks to come, we will be talking and writing more about what an extraordinary role Barlow played for the Internet and the world. And as always, we will continue the work to fulfill his dream.

Bonhomme Carnival: Pee wee hockey in Quebec

About 45 years ago, I got to play in the pee wee tournament at the Quebec winter carnival.

In 1974, as a pee wee (ice) hockey goaltender, I boarded a train, with my parents, from Brantford, Ontario to Quebec City.
Today, I’m reading the messages of Australian parents who have sent their Ice Crocs to the same pee wee tournament in Quebec City, as part of the winter carnival, or as the French prof would say, Bonhomme Carnaval, or I would say, Quebec Winter Carnival (and not by train, it would sink).
The pee wee hockey tournament has been a cornerstone of the Quebec Winter Carnival for, forever.

Coming from the town of Gretzky, great expectations were thrust upon the kids from Brantford, and about 10,000 people showed up in the arena where the Nordique used to play (it was probably 500, but great storytelling sometimes requires great imagination).

I let in 4 goals in two periods and was yanked.

My friend Mike (who I used to fear as a better goalie, but now we’re facebook friends) went in for the third and let in two goals.

We lost 6-0.

I have tried to bring these humble homilies to my years of coaching, teaching, and whatever else.

The experience though, was fantastic, hanging out with our host family, walking around in -20C weather, and awestruck by the 30-foot snow piles at the end of driveways.

We lost the game, but learned so much.

This is my way of telling hockey parents — especially the Australian ones —  chill out.

My parents were and are awesome, driving me to the rink, going to Quebec City, getting on a plane when I needed them.

 

Don’t eat (horse) poop: Philadelphia Eagles fan edition

TMZ reports an Eagles fan in a throwback Randall Cunningham jersey ate horse feces off the ground in Philadelphia last night. 

Yup. 

And why? Because he was happy … we think. 

By the way, it’s not like people were trying to talk him out of it — you can hear the crowd of fellow Philly fans cheering him on as he puts his face right up in the crap. 

Cops insist nobody died in the crazy Super Bowl celebration … so, Mr. Poo-Eater here clearly survived the stunt. 

Singapore: y’know, don’t hurl the contents of your stomach in public

Another serial vomiter story, this time from Coconuts Singapore, but with the risk communication tagline, “y’know, don’t hurl the contents of your stomach in public.”

The residents at Pinnacle@Duxton’s Block 1C have a whole ‘other level of revolting (and downright strange) situation to handle — piles of vomit at random places at the car park and the common area, as many as three to four times a week. The case of the serial vomiter at the Tanjong Pagar estate has gotten so bad that even the town council had to step in a few months ago with posters that say, y’know, don’t hurl the contents of your stomach in public.

According to Channel NewsAsia, the Tanjong Pagar town council received a complaint last year about the recurring problem of vomiting at the common area of that one particular block.

“Town Council put up the poster as an educational tool to deter this anti-social behavior as well as to seek residents’ assistance to contact the Town Council if they know who had committed this act,” said the town council’s vice-chairman in a typical politically correct tone to CNA.

Questions: Why would a family use a poop knife?

Sarah Montgomery of Complex writes that everybody poops. But not everyone uses the same tools to carry out that biological necessity. One Reddit user recently discovered that a tool he’s been using his whole life was not, in fact, a staple in bathrooms around the world.

Cue the “poop knife,” a mechanism used by @LearnedButt’s family to break up their apparently gargantuan shits. “My family poops big,” he wrote in a post. “If anyone has laid a mega-poop, you know that sometimes it won’t flush. It lays across the hole in the bottom of the bowl and the vortex of draining water merely gives it a spin as it mocks you.” What imagery.

The user went on to explain via Reddit how his family has used an old kitchen knife for decades to slice up their fecal matter. The knife hung on a nail in their laundry room, constantly waiting for its next big task. “It was normal to walk through the hallway and have someone call out ‘hey, can you get me the poop knife?’” he explains. “I thought it was standard kit. You have your plunger, your toilet brush, and your poop knife.”

Gross.

It came out of the sky: Frozen airplane poop – blue ice — raises questions in India town

A rumble in the sky and a loud thud a few seconds later shook villagers in Gurugram’s Fazilpur Badli on Saturday, leaving them wondering what had happened.

Rajbir Yadav was in a wheat field when a “large rock” made its way to the ground, forming a one-foot crater.

Was it a missile, a bomb or a meteor?

A terrified, befuddled Yadav sprinted to the village head, another villager, Sukhbir Singh, said.

The news spread like wildfire and a few minutes later, a large number of the villagers had circled the frigid “rock”, which later turned out to be human excret – a human poop.

While the elders wracked their brains to make a good guess, the children brimming with curiosity declared it was a gift by the aliens.

“It is a white, holy stone gifted by the aliens,” a child exclaimed.

Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Pataudi, Vivek Kalia told PTI a few people approached the district administration, and a team comprising officials from the Meteorological department and the National Disaster Management Authority was formed under Kalia.

The team found the “celestial gift” the whole village was talking about the entire day was “blue ice”, a term used for frozen toilet waste leaking from aircraft, Kalia said.

Questions: Why do dogs eat poop?

Every dog I’ve ever owned has liked to eat poop.

Even the current one, Ted, the Cavalier master of indifference, loves nothing more than going outside and chowing down on some cat or possum poop.

Saryn Chorney of People Pets writes, it’s a topic that has long perplexed animal researchers and veterinarians. And if you Google the topic, you’re likely to get more than a dozen different explanations ranging from canine anxiety to illness to simply boredom.

(Boredom explains many of life’s ills, human or dog or cat.)

However, a new study led by veterinarian Benjamin Hart, director of the Center for Animal Behavior at the University of California at Davis, has managed to link the off-putting behavior to “greedy eating” (dogs that quickly ravish their food bowls, according to owners) as well as an instinct connected to canines’ ancestral wolf pack days.

Hart and his team surveyed over 3,000 dog owners. Of these subjects, 16 percent ate other dogs’ feces “frequently” (their owners had witnessed a crappy chow down session at least six times), and of those pups, 80 percent preferred fresh feces less than two days old. Who doesn’t?

Interestingly, the research suggested that the tendency towards coprophagia (the scientific term for poop-eating) was evident no matter a dog’s age, breed, diet, house-training status or compulsive behavior tendency. This finding has unleashed a new theory: Modern day dogs have inherited both their aversion to pooping where they live as well as their likelihood to eat fresh poop from their ancient wolf ancestors.

Back in those wild days, wolves may’ve eaten the fresh feces of sick, lame or old members who accidentally let a load loose as a way to clean up inside and around their den. Since it takes about two days for parasites and other pathogens to develop, eating fresh poop is not usually dangerous, and in fact, eating poop that was festering in their living quarters was actually a helpful way to avoid intestinal parasites such as larvae and worms.

That said, some great minds in the canine scientific community think there may be a bit more to it. For instance, Professor James Serpell of the University of Pennsylvania and editor of the recent book The Domestic Dog: Its Evolution, Behavior and Interactions with People, told the Washington Post he finds the wolf theory “plausible,” but he’s also intrigued by the “greedy eaters” survey findings. He referenced a study of free-roaming wild dogs in developing countries that scavenge for food and, as a result, fill up on a sizable amount of human feces. This seems to indicate that poop could be viewed, errr digested, as a second-hand food source.

Today, dogs (and cats) “are fed diets that are relatively rich in fats and protein, not all of which may be completely digested, making their feces potentially attractive as a second hand food source,” Serpell told the Washington Post.

So, there you have it. Poop-eating is probably a normal, evolutionary dog trait.

I buy the greedy eaters theory: Ted the wonder dog was the runt of the litter, raised outside, and 2 years later, still eats by retrieving a piece of kibble and taking it to the couch or bed to chow down.

But that’s an anecdotal observation, not science.