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UPI NewsTrack Quirks in the News

Sept. 21, 2011 at 5:00 PM   |   Comments

New York's narrowest house for rent

NEW YORK, Sept. 21 (UPI) -- The owner of the narrowest house in New York, measuring only 9 1/2-feet-wide, is listing the property for rent for $14,000 a month.

The Greenwich Village house, which was renovated after it was purchased for $2.175 million in 2010 and is now worth an estimated $4.3 million, was formerly home to celebrities including Cary Grant, Margaret Mead, Edna St. Vincent Millay and John Barrymore, the New York Daily News reported Wednesday,

The 990-square-foot house includes three bedrooms, two bathrooms and four fireplaces. There is also a backyard garden shared with two neighboring townhouses.


Courthouse gets 200 extra jurors

FRESNO, Calif., Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Officials at a California court said an erroneous computer entry resulted in 300 people showing up for jury duty, 200 more than were required.

Sherry Spears, juror and public services manager for the Fresno County Superior Court, said an employee made a wrong computer entry, resulting in long lines forming outside of the jury assembly room, The Fresno (Calif.) Bee reported Wednesday.

Spears said 100 of the potential jurors were retained for two courtrooms and the other 200 were given the opportunity of waiting to see if they would be needed or calling back at 5 p.m. for future instructions.

Spears said court employees gave the potential jurors free parking passes to lessen the stress of the experience.


'Schweddy Balls' ice cream irks group

BURLINGTON, Vt., Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Vermont-based Ben & Jerry's is facing protests from a conservative group over the naming of its "Saturday Night Live"-inspired flavor, Schweddy Balls.

One Million Moms, an offshoot of the conservative American Family Association, said it wants the ice cream maker to do away with the "tasteless" name, which was inspired by an "SNL" sketch featuring Alec Baldwin as bakery owner Pete Schweddy, whose signature creation was Schweddy Balls, Gannett News Service reported Wednesday.

The group said it wants Ben & Jerry's to stop distribution of the flavor and cancel any planned future batches bearing the name. One Million Moms said it will organize a boycott of the company if it does not comply with the group's demands.

"The vulgar new flavor has turned something as innocent as ice cream into something repulsive. Not exactly what you want a child asking for at the supermarket," the group said in a statement posted to its Web site.

Ben & Jerry's spokesman Sean Greenwood said Tuesday there are no plans to discontinue the popular flavor and another production run is scheduled for next week.

"We've been hearing from many fans. It appeals to those who love our irreverent sense of humor. If you watch the skit, it's a lot easier to get the joke," Greenwood said.


Police: Woman took hearse with body inside

BECKLEY, W.Va., Sept. 21 (UPI) -- West Virginia police said they arrested a woman accused of stealing a hearse from a funeral home while there was a body inside.

Detective Jamie Blume of the Beckley City Police Department said the hearse driver parked the 1996 Cadillac Fleetwood outside of the funeral home, which was not identified, at 12:05 a.m. Tuesday and left the door ajar while attempting to gain access to the funeral home, the Beckley Register-Herald reported Wednesday.

Blume said the suspect, Angela Jeanette Dehart, 23, of Beaver, then climbed into the vehicle, drove it to Beaver, and abandoned it on Blue Jay Drive to walk the rest of the way to her residence.

Police returned the hearse and its contents to the funeral home within 4 hours of the theft, Blume said.

Investigators determined the corpse had been damaged, likely due to reckless driving following the theft.

Blume said Dehart admitted to the incident when questioned by police. She said she took the vehicle to drive home because she was unfamiliar with the area.

Dehart is facing charges of grand larceny and displacement of a dead body.

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