Simon Crisp: March 2008 Archives

200x190.jpgAn original painting by Picasso worth £100,000 has been found stacked against a bedroom wall.

The seven by five inch watercolour was painted in 1900-02 and shows the artist naked in bed with one of his many girlfriends. It was found amongst a pile of paintings at the house of a unnamed collector.

The work entitled "Etreinte" will now go on sale at Duke's auction house in Dorchester, Dorset.

200x190.jpgMoving house, getting married or going to the dentist are often seen as some of the most stressful events but now a new affliction has been added to the list ... being without phone contact.

Telecoms experts say "no mobile phobia" is now suffered by 13 million Brits who have feelings of anxiety when they run out of battery or credit, lose their phone or have no network coverage.

53 percent of 2,100 surveyed for the research by the Post Office said they got worried about not having phone coverage.

Elephant polo teams go trunk-to-trunk

200x190.jpgOne of the problems with polo matches is the damage to the pitch the horses cause - that doesn't get any better if you replace them with elephants.

The King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament started today in Thailand’ with 12 teams going trunk-to-trunk for the title.

The contest began in 2002 and raises money for the National Elephant Institute, which provides medical care, sustenance, employment, and mahout training to Thailand’s elephant population.

200x190.jpgThe multi-billionaire owner of the Savoy hotel in London has revealed plans to build a mile-high tower in the desert which will be the worlds tallest building.

The 5,250ft, the £5billion tower will be constructed in a “mini-city” near the Red Sea port of Jeddah. and will measure seven times the height of the Canary Wharf tower.

Prince al-Walid bin Talal, 51, is a member of the Saudi royal family worth an estimated at £11 billion.

BBC news presenter has giggling fit

200x190.jpgThe BBC were contacted by hundreds of listeners after a newsreader on the prestigious Today show dissolved into giggles while announcing the death of Abby Mann.

Charlotte Green lost control as she began to talk about the life of the Oscar winning screenwriter and creator of Kojak.

She had just played a clip of the oldest known recording of the human voice and seemed to find it more amusing than most. (Listen to the clip)

200x190.jpgGordon Brown has this week launched a new media assault - adding Twitter and Flickr accounts to his official YouTube channel, which was set up by Tony Blair.

Staff from the Prime Minister's Office will now update the accounts with the goings on from inside 10 Downing Street.

But rather than letting us know usual twitter facts, such as what Gordon is having for breakfast, the Twitter account will provide links to official Downing Street images and videos. 

Man attacked by drunk Darth Vader

200x190.jpgA Star Wars fan who founded the Britain's first Jedi Church has been attacked by a drunk Darth Vader weilding a metal crutch.

Jedi Master Hehol, (Barney Jones) a hairdresser from Wales, was being interviewed for a TV documentary when the assault took place.

Wearing a bin-bag and trademark helmet, Vader jumped over a garden fence before hitting him. Police are investigating a claim of assault.

Tommy Lee starts new mile-high club

200x190.jpgRocker Tommy Lee has set a new world record - by getting a tattoo done while 45,000ft in the air.

The Motley Crue drummer had a large peacock etched onto his skin by tattoo artist Mario Barth mid flight from Burbank Airport to Miami.

At 45,000ft on the luxurious Gulfstream IV private jet Barth, of Starlight Tattoo, started work on Lees right thigh. (watch the video)

Sardine ice-cream at roadside cafe?

200x190.jpgA celebrity chef whose wacky dishes include snail porridge and sardines-on-toast will attempt to help the struggling UK roadside cafe chain Little Chef.

Heston Blumenthal, who has three Michelin stars for his restaurant the Fat Duck, in Bray will try to turn around the fortunes of the chain by re-inventing their menu.

Over three one hour programmes for Channel 4 (Big Chef, Little Chef), Blumenthal will seek to revive a single, as yet unidentified, Little Chef restaurant. 

200x190.jpgThe Royal Air Force (RAF) has launched a "show-stopping" bikini to celebrate its 90th anniversary.

Selling for £35 the bikini features the RAF logo constructed out of blue, red and white diamante on a navy blue material and is available in sizes 8-18.

The RAF website which sells the bikini, says it is a "show-stopping bikini (which) will make anyone's head turn, yet which is distinctly tasteful and flattering to the figure".

200x190.jpgAdam was sex-obsessed, Josephs family were annoyed he wasn't married to Mary, and Goliath was a celebrity binge drinker - according to a new version of bible stories.

Anglican vicar, Rev Robert Harrison, has retold the famous stories from the  perspective of the non-believer in a new book 'The Must Know Stories'.

He says the book aims to make the stories more accessible, rather than to promote Christianity.

Weird Week 26-03-08

YouTube stunts, scientists drop geckos and a bear gets arrested.

Welcome to the news:lite weird week AJ Parker brings you her selection of the odd, quirky and off-beat news stories from

Dolphins use "flowers" to woo a mate

200x190.jpgSome dolphins use branches, weeds and mud as 'bouquets of flowers' to woo sexual partners it has been discovered.

Scientists studying the Boto, a South American river dolphin, found that the males would carry the objects when around females, often thrashing them of the surface of the water.

This is the first time using objects for socio-sexual display has been seen in any marine mammal.

200x190.jpgSerena Williams and Rafael Nadal have played the world’s first ever game of tennis to take place on water.

The game took place at the top of the Gansevoort South Hotel, Miami, where the water court was constructed in the 110ft swimming pool and was played to promote the The Sony Ericsson Open.

Rafael Nadal said: "I love playing on ALL surfaces, but this was different and playing against Serena made it even more special. Playing a game on water was a first for me."

Australia to build its own Stonehenge

200x190.jpgA businessman is to construct a full-size replica of Stonehenge in the Margaret River region of Western Australia.

Ross Smith says the £700,000 monument will be made from 2,500 tonnes of granite and will be in place in time for the summer solstice, on December 21.

The 101 granite stones will make a inner and outer circle complete with a central alter.
200x190.jpgThe UK could see a 15 miles-per-hour speed limit imposed to get drivers out of their cars.

Ministers hope that reducing the speed - to a point where cars will be slower than bikes - will make it so unbearable, drivers would rather use public transport.

The rule will be brought in across 10 new eco-towns where more than 100,000 homes are to be built.

200x190.jpgPassengers were trapped up to 450ft in the air when the tourist attraction the London Eye broke last night (Monday.)

Operators spotted a problem with on of the tyres which turns the massive wheel and were forced to halt the ride for over an hour while repairs were made.

The trapped tourists opened supplies of blankets, water and emergency toilets - though in the glass capsules there was not much privacy.

200x190.jpgGiving your child a strange name could mean they will be more successful or even more attractive.

Professor Richard Wiseman and his team polled 6,000 people to discover how perception of certain names varied.

They found James and Elizabeths are seen as the most successful, Jack and Lucy the luckiest and Sophie and Ryan the most attractive.

World's most expensive champagne

200x190.jpgA personalised bottle of bubbly has gone on sale at $6485 per bottle, making it the world's most expensive champagne.

But you will need to have $78,000 spare as Perrier-Jouet are only selling it in cases of 12 bottles.

Only 100 cases are being made available and sales will be limited to a "community of super-rich" consumers in the United States, Britain, Japan, China, Russia, Switzerland and France.

200x190.jpgA group of monks have been signed to the same record label as Eminem and Amy Winehouse after posting a video clip on YouTube.

Universal Music will now work with the monks from Heiligenkreuz monastery in Austria to record a Gregorian chant album.

The company had appealed for demos recorded by monks and received hundreds but were most impressed with the monastery based in the Vienna woods, which is home to 80 monks and dates back to 1133.

200x190.jpgItalian police are hunting for a man who has been hypnotizing supermarket checkout staff and getting them to give him cash from the till.

The last thing staff remember is the man - who looks like Saddam Hussein - leaning over the counter and saying 'Look into my eyes'.

The next thing they know the till is empty and the man has gone. Police have now released CCTV footage of some the man who they believe is either of Indian or North African.
200x190.jpgHolly Willoughby is plugging a water-saving campaign for mark World Water Day, by telling people how to shower.

The Dancing on Ice star wants people to agree to cut the amount of time we spend showering to just three minutes.

Holly, 27, said: "Many of us do not realise that on average we use a staggering 9 litres of water per minute in the shower.

200x190.jpgA Japanese astronaut has answered a question which has plagued mankind for decades - can a boomerang work in space.

Astronaut Takao Doi threw a boomerang and saw it come back while on the the International Space Station, a spokeswoman for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency said.

JAXA were keen to stress the "experiment" took place in the astronauts free time on the space station.

200x190.jpgCoffee giant Starbucks has been ordered to pay its California coffee-makers more than $100m in lost tips.

A San Diego Superior Court Judge said "baristas" - were entitled to $86m in back tips (plus tax) which had been paid to shift supervisors.

An injunction was issued banning shift supervisors from taking a share of employee tips in the future - the judge adding that the practice broke a state law.

Weird Week

AJ Parker brings you her selection of the odd, quirky and off-beat news stories from

This week we have wooden bra, a student who can't tell the difference between a laptop and a bag of potatoes and the sex doll for dogs.

200x190.jpgAcademics studying global warming have turned their minds to a problem so severe they say it is threatening the future of the planet - animal flatulence.

The average cow can even contribute as much to global warming as a family car that travels 12,000 miles, they claim.

Now experts at the Rowett Research Institute in Aberdeen, Scotland, now trying to produce new foodstuffs that will make livestock less gassy. 

200x190.jpgA video in which a workman is swung through the air by the arm of a digger has been condemned by police.

The 49 second clip has been labeled "extremely foolhardy and reckless," by police, while the Health and Safety Executive branded the prank "irresponsible."

The stunt which was posted on YouTube was filmed at the Scomi Oiltools premises in Peterhead last May resulted in an employee being dismissed fromt he company for gross misconduct. 

200x190.jpgThousands of toilets installed in venues for the 2008 China Olympics are to be replaced because of complaints.

Most toilets in China require users to squat rather than sit-down, but during test events users have complained - some even saying squatting could hinder athletic performances.

The revamp comes four months before the world's biggest sporting event kicks off in August when 500,000 foreigners to due to attend.
200x190.jpgA Chippie is set to sell a fish for more than £150,000 - but this is no ordinary battered cod - it's an artwork by Damien Hirst.

'Fish in formaldehyde' was given to the Leeds based fish and chip shop owner by Hirst when his brother worked there in the 1990s.

But not knowing it's value the owners fixed the 2ft tank to the wall next to a menu offering Haddock for £1.65.

200x190.jpgA Bordeaux wine maker has valued his sense of smell at almost £4 million and insured his nose with Lloyd's of London.

Ilja Gort, the Dutch owner of Chateau de la Garde in Bordeaux, France is now covered for the loss of his nose and sense of smell.

Gort, who produces Tulipe Wines, says his nose is key to his business and smell is the only way he can guarantee the quality of his wines.

200x190.jpgOnly a third of people in the UK trust official statistics, official statistics have revealed.

A poll of 1,000 people by Office for National Statistics poll found the majority believe numbers are often tweaked or twisted for political purposes.

Only 36 percent said they believed official statistics and a huge 84 percent said they felt the Government twisted figures when talking about its policies.

Israel secret service bloggers

200x190.jpgAgents for Shin Bet, Israel's secret service, are routinely involved in surveillance, interrogation and armed operations inside Israel ... now add blogging to that list.

The internal secret service has launched a Hebrew-language blog written by four of its agents.

Shown only in silhouette the agents talk about how they were recruited, what sort of work they perform and answer questions sent in by members of the public.

Gecko tail is key to acrobatic ability

200x190.jpgScientists repeatedly dropped Geckos in an attempt to discover how the reptiles are able to land on their feet.

They even put the animals in vertical wind tunnels and filmed them with a special high-speed camera to see their movements in slow motion.

Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, now say the research will be used to develop new climbing robots and unmanned aerial vehicles.

Millions of bees loose in California

12 million honey bees escaped when the truck carrying crates of them flipped over on a motorway.
Highway patrol officers say a tractor trailer, carrying bee crates each filled with up to 30,000 bees, flipped over while entering the motorway on its way to Yakima, Washington.

The bees swarmed over an areas of Highway 99 having stung police officers, firefighters and drivers trying to clear the accident.

Man to sell entire life on eBay

200x190.jpgA heart-broken man is putting his entire life on eBay after splitting up with his wife.

Ian Usher, from Perth, Australia, is now offering his custom-built house, Mazda car, 140mph motorbike, jet-ski and even his job in the online auction.

Ian says he lived a 'dream life' since moving from the UK six years ago, but now having split up with his wife he wants to start a new life.

World's biggest remote control car

200x190.jpgEngineers have converted one of the world's biggest cars into a remote controlled toy.

A team from Cranfield University, Bedfordshire, spent a month converting the Hummer H3 so that it can be "driven" with a small hand held remote.

Dr James Brighton says the ultimate toy can now be controlled - with amazing handling ability - to climb a 40% slope and will work in 61cm of water.

Radio One blamed for party damage

200x190.jpgDrunken gatecrashes caused more then £20,000 worth of damage after Radio One broadcast details of a 18th birthday party.

200 revelers arrived at the party in Devon after DJ Pete Tong gave a "shout out" on his popular BBC show.

Rebecca Brooks, the mother of the 18-year-old, has now threatened to sue the BBC for the damage caused to the 21-bedroom house.

Library book returned 100 years late

200x190.jpgA book which has been on loan from a Finnish library for more than 100 years has been returned by a mystery reader.

The 1902 bound copy of Vartija, an religious monthly periodical reappeared the library in Vantaa, southern Finland, over a century after it was originally borrowed.

But no-one know who brought the book back and library bosses say the book has been missing so long all documentation as to who it was borrowed by have been lost.

£5.5 million Sport Relief mystery

200x190.jpgA mystery donor phoned the BBC during their  Sport Relief telethon and pledged a whopping £5.5 million.

After announcing the donation during Friday's live BBC broadcast, presenter Patrick Kielty said: "Wherever you are tonight, you are amazing."

Organisers said it was thought to be the largest single donation to any telethon in the UK and is the biggest in Comic Relief's 22-year history.

200x190.jpgA bear in Macedonia has been convicted of theft and criminal damage after it stole honey from a beekeepers hives.

The beekeeper resorted to the calling for a court case after his attempts to keep it away with bright lights and loud music failed.

The court found the bear guilty and, since it had no owner and belonged to a protected species, ordered the state to pay the 140,000 denars (£1,724) damage it caused to the hives.
200x190.jpgBoffins have invented a pair of glasses which will play back footage of moment you have forgotten, such as where did you put your keys.

The Japanese scientists say the 'Smart Goggles' not only records what is being seen but also recognizes it.

So, should you loose you keys you would simply tell your glasses and they would 'remember' the last time you saw them.

Ants are ANTisocial

200x190.jpgThey are often seen as the model of social co-operation, but according to scientists the ant world is riddled with cheating and corruption.

Ants have always been thought to work together for the benefit of the colony rather than for individual gain.

But it has now been revealed that some ants cheat to make sure their offspring become queens.

Woman spent two years on toilet

200x190.jpgA woman spent so long on the toilet her legs wasted away and her skin attached itself to the seat.

Her boyfriend asked everyday if the 35-year-old was coming out, but she kept replying "Maybe tomorrow" and asking him to bring her food and water.

Police were eventually called to the home in Ness City, Kansas and convinced the woman, who was fully clothed, except for her tracksuit bottoms pulled down to her mid-thigh, to leave. 

Weird Week 12-03-08

A water powered sports-car, Italy bans men from scratching their privates and the British military tried to win WW2 by reading Hitlers stars.

Welcome to the news:lite weird week.

AJ Parker brings you her selection of the odd, quirky and off-beat news stories from
200x190.jpgMore than 50 people have lost their sight after staring at the sun believing they might be able to see an image of the Virgin Mary.

St Joseph's ENT and Eye hospital in Kottayam say they have received the patients with photochemical burns on the retina since Friday.

Rumours of a miraculous image in the sky have seen hoards of believers flocking to a hotel where the divine image is said to be visible.

Food court musical

New York pranksters Improv Everywhere have released their latest video in which they turn a LA food court into an musical stage.

"For our latest mission, 16 agents staged a spontaneous musical in the food court of a Los Angeles shopping mall. We used wireless microphones to amplify the vocal performances and mix them together with the music through the mall’s PA system," say the group.

Needless to say it was filmed on hidden cameras and no one was aware of what was happening, apart from the performers.

Gnome terrifying Argentinean town

200x190.jpgA "creepy gnome" which wears a pointy hat and walks sideways like a crab has terrified the town of General Gueme in Argentina.

Locals say the gnome has been spotted wandering around at night and many are now too scared to leave their homes at night.

Local teenagers claim to have caught the creature on a mobile phone video - the grainy footage shows a shadowy figure moving across a road.
200x190.jpgA student who thought he had bought a £600 laptop returned home to find he had a bag of potatoes.

The 27-year-old, originally from East Africa, had been approached by a man in a Portsmouth car-park who had offered him a Sony Viao for £600.

The man showed the machine to the student who promptly handed over the cash - taking the laptop case - it was only later he realized the laptop bag had been switched and his contained the vegetables.

200x190.jpgA would-be Korean astronaut has lost his chance to go into space - because he took a book from a Russian space training center and was late returning it.

Ko San was due to fly on a Russian Soyuz capsule to the International Space Station (ISS) in early April, but the Russia's Federal Space Agency has asked he is replaced because of his book misdemeanor.

Ko had taken a book out of the center and accidently sent it to his home in South Korea he later returned the book, explaining the accident.

Is wooden underwear barking mad?

200x190.jpgA designer has branched out into eco-wear, by launching a range of lingerie made from wood.

Fibres are harvested from white pine trees in North America and Canada before being spun into fabric which is used to make the g+9.8 bras and knickers.

Makers claim that because the fabric has more microscopic holes than traditional materials they are more hygienic - and that there is no chance of getting a splinter.

200x190.jpgIt was the must-have toy of the 1970s. Now 'The Evel Knievel Stunt Cycle' has been voted as the toy adults would most like to to have back.

A survey of has found the wind-up plastic stunt man is the toy people wished they could play with one more time.

The stunt cycle beat off stiff competition from Weebles, Space Hoppers and Cabbage Patch Dolls.

Computer virus seen as art

200x190.jpgThey have wreaked havoc on businesses around the world, but artist Alex Dragulescu has transformed a series of computer viruses into a stunning set of images.

The Russian digital artist generated the images by entering a sample of the actual code from each online threat into his proprietary computer program and combining the results with his artistic skills.

The 15 images - representations of virus, spam, Ttrojans, spyware, malicious links and phishing - are all generated in 3D.

Sex doll for dogs

200x190.jpgFed up with getting their legs humped by over amorous pets designers have created a sex doll for dogs.

The Hotdoll is a plastic 'dog' which can be mounted by a randy pouch and comes in two sizes depending on how big your pet is.

A spokesperson for design company Feel Addicted said: "Hotdoll is a natural way to control its sexual impulses, it is shaped to be grabbed easily by the dog's paws like female hips.

2,000 mile test drive

200x175.jpgA man who took a new car on a 2,000 mile six-day test drive in Australia has been arrested.

The 30-year-old had booked to take a Honda Accord on a test drive last Sunday - but dealership bosses were shocked when he didn't return within the hour.

He actually drove from Melbourne to Adelaide to Alice Springs covering 1,988 miles.

Pupils smile to beat pervs

200x175.jpgA school put 'smiley' faces on pictures of their pupils, in a bid to beat internet paedophiles.

The head teacher of the school in Essex said the move was because they felt security was an issue and they didn't know how the images would be used

The images were removed after the actions were labelled 'political correctness gone mad.' 

Image taken from

DJ chats to himself

200x175.jpgRadio DJ Andy Greener did everything you should for a good show, there was witty banter, he chatted about the news and provided weather updates.

But you will have to take his word for it - because the dopey DJ forgot to press the broadcast button.

Listeners to Radio Teesdale were left with a series of jingles and music tracks when a back-up system kicked in to prevent 'dead air.'

Insects to become spies

200x175.jpgScientists are planning to fit cameras, radio controls and microphone to insects to turn them into super spies.

The US military is said to be ploughing vast amounts of money into animal cyborg spies.

The ultimate aim of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is said to be cyborg insects which can fly to their target and then stay put until instructed to fly off.

NEW - news:lite TV

Today we add 'news:lite TV' to the site, a weekly round-up of the best odd, weird and strange news from news:lite brought to you by host, AJ Parker.

The show will update every Wednesday and is available through the  'news:lite TV' just under our logo at the top of the page.

We are delighted to have been joined by AJ and are sure we will enjoy watching her videos as much as you will.
200x190.jpgA cheeky set of pictures in which supermodels model very little, is set to sell for more than £2 million.

Among the 135 images being sold by German-born collector Gert Elfering are shots of Kate Moss and Gisele Bundchen in their birthday suits.

Others images which will go on sale at Christie’s auction house next month include a portrait of Brigitte Bardot and a reclining nude of American actress Lauren Hutton. 

Police fooled by drug hoax

200x175.jpgBungling police were left red-faced after warning school children about a non-existent drug.

When an officer for Thames Valley Police had received an email warning of a substance called "strawberry meth" - a fruit-flavoured version of methamphetamine aimed at children - he warned local schools.

They in turn issued letters to parents, only to find out the drug does not exist and that the email was an internet hoax.

Man had 'sex' with lamp-post

200x175.jpgA man has been arrested for having sex with a lamp-post, police have revealed.

The 32-year-old was spotted allegedly simulating a sex act with the lamp-post outside a block of flats in Wiltshire, UK.

Police say officers were called to the road in Westbury after reports of a man acting indecently. He was arrested on suspicion of outraging public decency but later released on bail.

Was Moses high?

200x175.jpgMoses and the biblical Israelites could have been stoned when the Ten Commandments were brought down from Mount Sinai, it has been claimed.

Benny Shanon, a professor of cognitive psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, claims psychedelic drugs formed an integral part of the religious rites of Israelites in biblical times.

According to him, drinks based on the bark of the acacia tree, frequently mentioned in the Old Testament, could have hallucinogenic effects.

Cardigans - not just for Grampa

200x175.jpgWhile they were once worn only by grandads smoking their pipes, the humble cardigan is now undergoing a fashion boom, say experts.

After being worn by trendsetters such as Jude Law, Daniel Craig and David Beckham one chain says it sold 226,000 in January alone.

Adsa bosses say cardigans are now flying off the shelves after shaking off their fuddy-duddy associations.

news:lite weekly quiz

200x175.jpgIt is here again, the news:lite weekly quiz, 10 questions about the last seven days.

Click HERE to enter the quiz.

Remember, there are no prizes its just for fun they say.

UK 'read' Hitler's stars

200x175.jpgBritish intelligence bosses tried to guess Hitlers plans by reading his horoscopes, files released by the National Archives have revealed.

It was hoped that by knowing what advice the German taurean was being given British forces would be able to know his next move.

Hungarian, Ludwig von Wohl (pictured) was recruited to examine the astrological advice being given to Hitler by Swiss stargazer Karl Ernst Krafft.

Scarlett offers Ebay date

Actress Scarlett Johansson is auctioning herself off on Ebay - offering fans the chance to spend the evening with her - all in the name of charity.

The Lost in Translation star will meet the highest bidder at the world premier of 'He's Just Not That Into You' where they will have a chance to woo the 22-year-old.

Bidding ends on March 12th and all money raised will go to Oxfam America who Scarlett visited poverty-stricken parts of India with last year.

Alien contact by 2028

200x175.jpgHumans will make contact with aliens within 20 years, leading astronomers have claimed.

American astrophysicist Dr Frank Drake says the contact has become probable because of recent discoveries including Earth-like planets outside our solar system and the upcoming launch of a major Nasa mission in 2009.

"Everything has caused us to become more optimistic," said the founder of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence on a BBC two Horizon documentary, which will be broadcast tonight 9pm.

Husband ordered to buy 124,000 roses

200x175.jpgAn Iranian court has ordered a "stingy" husband to buy his wife 124,000 red roses.

The woman decided to take the man to court and claim her mahr after 10 years of marriage because he was so tight.

Under Iranian law a mahr is offered at time of marriage, can be claimed by the woman at any time during married life or even divorce proceedings.

Water powered 100mph sports car

200x175.jpgA water powered sports car which can reach 100mph and has zero emission is to be launched.

The Morgan Lifecar has been developed by a consortium of UK companies and universities at a cost of £1.9 million over the last three years.

But makers say despite doing 0-60 in seven second the car is so quiet they may have to add MP3 sound effects to make it sound like a powerful petrol engine.

Facebook Big Issue boost

200x175.jpgA tramp has seen his sales of the Big Issue soar after a customer set up a page for him on Facebook.

The 'Croydon Big Issue Man Appreciation Club' now has more than 600 members on the social networking site and his sales figures are up 400%.

The 35-year-old says he was selling just seven or eight copies per day but can now shift up-to 30 issues of the newspaper published on behalf of and sold by homeless people.

Beauty and the Apple geek

200x175.jpgCosmopolitan Magazine has named the Apple store one of the best places for women to pick up a man.

The unlikely location normally associated with geeks rather than eligible bachelors ranked alongside gyms, rock-climbing center and Fortune 500 companies.

In the latest issue of Cosmo it says: "Most guys are natural gadget lovers, and with sales of iPods and MacBooks skyrocketing, more men than ever are stopping by Apple boutiques."

Fat-carvers fight for title

200x175.jpgA Scottish student has been crowned the UKs top lard carver ... yes you read that correctly.

Entrants in the annual competition use pastry lard to model intricate sculptures around a wire frame.

The more unusual works this year included one of Ozzy Osbourne singing into a microphone, two horses with a rider on one and the winner, an 18 inch Mickey Mouse.

Paragliding dog rescued

Firefighters were called in to help rescue a paragliding dog after it was left dangling from a tree 100 ft above the ground.  

Strapped to the chest of owner Paul Hansen, Emma, a four-year-old, chihuahua had been launched in the paraglider from Warburton in Melbourne, Australia.

But shortly after take-off the pair got caught in a tree and Paul was forced to use his mobile phone to text friends who in turn called police and firefighters.

Robbers get biker surprise

Two armed robbers who targeted a bar in Sydney, Australia, couldn't have picked a worse time for their attack - 50 bikers were holding a meeting in an adjoining room.

Members of the Southern Cross Cruiser Club, fought back against the masked and machete-wielding men using tables and chairs.

One of the would-be robbers was tied up and kept for police the other was taken to a local hospital.

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