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UPI NewsTrack Quirks in the News

Dec. 4, 2012 at 5:00 PM   |   Comments

No photo of Obama, Boehner

WASHINGTON, Dec. 4 (UPI) -- President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, failed to pose for a photo together at the White House holiday party amid a deficit reduction standoff.

Obama and Boehner, who have been said to dislike one another's deficit reduction proposals, both attended the annual event Monday night for members of Congress but the speaker did not pose for a picture with the president as he has on previous occasions, ABC News reported Thursday.

The two politicians are currently working to get their respective deficit reduction proposals passed by Congress.


'Gawdy' Christmas displays raise eyebrows

ARNOLD, Mo., Dec. 4 (UPI) -- A Missouri family is raising eyebrows with a Christmas display depicting Santa as a hunter with a bleeding deer hanging by its hooves.

Stacie Kurtz -- whose father created the display as part of the family's traditional "Gawdy Christmas" theme at their Arnold home -- said the image of Santa holding a rope attached to the hanging deer in lights is supposed to depict a "Santa who went hunting," KTVI-TV, St. Louis, Mo., reported Tuesday.

"We live in Jefferson County. We`re a hunting a community. You see the real ones hanging from people`s garage after they've gotten their big kill of the season. So what's so wrong about a fake one?" Kurtz said.

Neighbors who said they found the display in poor taste asked not to be identified so as not to be compared to Dr. Seuss' "Grinch."

Another bleeding deer display across town was set up as a prank on a neighbor, who responded with a display depicting Santa Claus relieving himself, with dripping yellow lights portraying St. Nick's urinal stream.


Atheist fights courthouse nativity scene

SAN ANTONIO, Dec. 4 (UPI) -- A Texas atheist known for filing church-and-state separation lawsuits is trying to keep a nativity scene away from a courthouse.

Patrick Greene of San Antonio filed a lawsuit Monday at the Bexar County Courthouse against the city of Athens, aiming to get the city to take down the nativity scene placed in front of the Henderson County Courthouse, the San Antonio Express-News reported Tuesday.

The nativity scene was the site of a Christian rally last year when Greene and an atheist group threatened lawsuits, but Greene's action was dropped when he fell ill and a church based in Athens sent him money for his medical bills.

Greene briefly converted to Christianity when the church helped with his bills.

Greene's previous lawsuits this year include a suit against a Lubbock museum that killed and stuffed two mules for display, and a suit against San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro for participating in the National Day of Prayer.


Campaign: Say something nice about Camden

CAMDEN, N.J., Dec. 4 (UPI) -- A former resident of Camden, N.J., said her "Say Something Nice About Camden" billboard is aimed at improving the reputation of the city.

Jennifer Barton, a former Camden resident who now works as a communications executive in New York, said the billboard is part of her campaign to raise the profile of the city's positive points, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported Tuesday.

"Saying something nice about the city is a small, positive action that can turn into something powerful," Barton said. "I'd like to raise the visibility of the really good things that are happening there."

Barton said a website, saysomethingniceaboutcamden.org, has been set up to allow people to share positive thoughts about the city, as well as Facebook and Twitter accounts for the same purpose.

"My billboard is a personal, artistic message," Barton said. "It's thought-provoking ... and also a call to action."

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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