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Feb. 13, 2013 at 6:00 AM
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Drunk man dangles from bridge for 2 hours

PLYMOUTH, England, Feb. 12 (UPI) -- A British man whose drunken prank left him suspended over a busy road in a harness for two hours pleaded guilty to causing a danger to road users.

Lee Bassett, 29, pleaded guilty Tuesday after he ended up dangling from a pedestrian bridge in Plymouth, England, for nearly two hours, The Sun reported Tuesday.

Prosecutor Will Rose said Bassett dangled from the bridge on a drunken dare and it cost the city $7,631 to rescue him when he found he was unable to climb back up on his own.

"Spider-Man, Mr. Bassett is not," the Plymouth Herald quoted Rose as saying.

Rose said Bassett apologized in pleading guilty to the charge.

Sentencing has been set for March 11.

Suit: Dancer's thumb severed at club

SAYREVILLE, N.J., Feb. 12 (UPI) -- A woman's lawsuit alleges her thumb was severed by an aerial apparatus while she was rehearsing for a competition at a New Jersey strip club.

Sarah Berry, 35, of Philadelphia filed a lawsuit Friday against Delilah's Den in Sayreville, alleging her thumb was severed while she was practicing with a "half moon aerial apparatus" in preparation for the ninth annual Delilah's Diamond G-String Competition in July 2011, the Philadelphia Daily News reported Tuesday.

James Golkow, Berry's attorney, said his client trained on similar apparatuses while studying performing arts in school. He said the club failed to ensure the apparatus was properly designed, built, inspected and tested before letting contest participants use it.

Golkow said Berry was not employed by the club and was participating in the contest on an invitation from a friend.

The suit is seeking $50,000 for "pain and suffering, disfigurement, humiliation and embarrassment."

Managers at the club did not respond to a request for comment, the Daily News said.

Heart Attack Grill enthusiast dies

LAS VEGAS, Feb. 12 (UPI) -- The unofficial spokesman for the Heart Attack Grill died after an apparent heart attack in front of the Las Vegas restaurant, the owner says.

Jon Basso said John Alleman, whose "Patient John" caricature is on the high-calorie eatery's menus, suffered an apparent heart attack at a bus stop last week and was taken off life support Monday, the Las Vegas Sun reported Tuesday.

Alleman, who was a daily fixture at the restaurant but was not on the payroll, was 52 years old.

"He lived a very full life," Basso said. "He will be missed."

"He never missed a day, even on Christmas," Basso said. "People just loved him. He connected with people in a real way."

Alleman is the second unofficial spokesman to die since the restaurant opened two years ago. In March 2011, Blair River, a 29-year-old who weighed 575 pounds, died of flu-related pneumonia.

Basso said the restaurant has no plans to change its menu, which includes a world record-breaking 9,982-calorie, 3-pound Quadruple Bypass Burger.

"The grill is where you can be yourself. We accept people as they are," Basso said. "[Alleman's death] isn't going to stop us from what we're doing. People have got to live their lives."

Basso said Alleman, who only weighed 180 pounds at the time of his death, should serve as a warning that heart attacks can strike anyone.

"Heart attacks aren't a laughing matter," he said. "You don't have to be tremendously old or fat. You can be in your 30s and 40s and die of a heart attack."

Pancake race time: 64.3 seconds

LIBERAK, Kan., Feb. 12 (UPI) -- First-time runner Caitlin Demarest posted a time of 64.3 seconds despite snow in the annual Shrove Tuesday pancake race in Liberal, Kan., a race official said.

Demarest, 27, bested 12 other competitors on the 415-yard course, spokeswoman JoAnn Combs said. Rene Boaldin, 20, was second and last year's winner, Kaela Kreuger, was third.

"It was warm enough yesterday, you didn't need a coat," Combs said. But by race time Tuesday, it was 32 degrees, "snowing and really wet. It's not really sticking. ... It's real fine and really coming down."

No one slipped, Combs added.

The race goes back to the 15th century when tradition has it an English housewife frying up pancakes to use up the last of her fat before the start of Lent heard the tolling of the church bell and realized she was late for the Shriving Service. She ran out the door, fry pan still in hand and still wearing her apron and headscarf.

Modern racers are similarly dressed and have to flip their pancakes at least once during the race.

Liberal races against Olney, England, and apparently lost for the second straight year. Olney's race was won by Devon Byrne, 19, but though ITV reports she set a race record, no official time has been posted. Byrne also won last year's heats, running the course in 58.5 seconds.

The International Pancake Day website says the overall score stood at 36 wins for Liberal and 26 for Olney as of last year. Liberal posted the current record in 2009, 57.5 seconds.

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