Watercooler Stories

By United Press International  |  June 5, 2007 at 6:30 AM
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Lost 1983 class ring returned to owner

BEAUFORT, S.C., June 4 (UPI) -- A Beaufort, S.C., High School ring stolen 23 years ago has been returned to its owner after a man found it at an auction in Virginia.

An Ohio man, John Mitchell, found the 1983 class ring in a box of comics he bought for his nephew at an auction in Virginia, The Beaufort Gazette reported Monday.

Mitchell, 70, searched for the ring's owner and he was eventually led to John Capers of Chicago.

"I'm so glad; this is crazy," said Capers, 41, after finding out his missing ring had been found. "I missed it for a long time."

Capers said his high school ring was stolen from him in 1984 at the University of South Carolina-Columbia. He said a young man came into his room and talked for a minute, and when he left Capers noticed his ring was gone.

"I have not seen that guy another day in my life or heard anything about that ring --until today," Capers said. "I am very happy."

Climbers re-create 1924 Mount Everest trek

KATHMANDU, Nepal, June 4 (UPI) -- An international team of mountain climbers is re-creating a climb that claimed two noted adventurers on Mount Everest on the Nepal-China border in 1924.

They are using equipment designed in the 1920s to retrace the steps of George Mallory and Andrew Irvine's climb up Mount Everest, from which the duo never returned, the BBC reported Monday.

The two British climbers disappeared just short of the summit in 1924.

The current climbers are trying to figure out if the two men actually reached the summit nearly 30 years before climbers Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay, now regarded as the first to scale Everest's heights.

The last sighting of Mallory and Irvine was reported a few hundred meters short of the summit, right before bad weather closed in.

Close to where the climbers were last seen in 1924 lies a 40-meter high, near-vertical rock face called the Second Step, which reportedly is the hardest part of the climb.

Man wakes from coma to see new Poland

WARSAW, Poland, June 4 (UPI) -- A Polish man who spent 19 years in a coma awoke to a whole new world, but he said people still find things to complain about.

"When I went into a coma, there was only tea and vinegar in the shops," Jan Grzebski, 65, told a Polish news channel. "Meat was rationed and there were huge petrol queues everywhere."

"Now I see people on the streets with cellphones and there are so many goods in the shops it makes my head spin," he Grzebski said. "What amazes me is all these people who walk around with their mobile phones and yet they never stop moaning."

Grzebski, a railway worker, went into a coma after he was hit by a train in 1988. Doctors predicted he would live for two or three years. His wife moved him every hour for 19 years so he wouldn't get bedsores, The Independent reported.

British prime minister drawn in the nude

LONDON, June 4 (UPI) -- The centerpiece of the Royal Academy's summer exhibition in London will be a drawing of British Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie in the nude.

The drawing, done by artist Michael Sandle, depicts Blair and his wife being expelled from their home in the buff and is modeled on paintings of Adam and Eve being expelled from the Garden of Eden, The Daily Mail reported Monday.

The 15-by-5-foot picture is the artist's representation of criticism of the Blair's decision to go to war in Iraq.

The Blairs are shown alongside a British soldier beating Iraqi civilians and a pile of Iraqi corpses piled up to the windows of their Downing Street home, said the Mail.

"I wasn't going to submit this year but I suddenly felt overcome with anger at the way Blair has messed up," said Sandle, 71. "He doesn't appear to feel a twinge of conscience about Iraq because he is so sure that he did the right thing."

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