Informed Voters

Dec. 10, 2008
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In November, the voters of Sodaville, Ore. (population 290), elected Thomas Brady Harrington, 33, as mayor, even though he is a convicted felon with a criminal record that includes drug possession, robbery, assault and eluding a police officer. Some upset voters now claim they thought they were voting for Harrington’s father, a respected town elder.

Compelling Explanations

"I'm really sorry… I thought he was just tired," said Lynne Stewart, who was arrested in West Melbourne, Fla., in October and charged with stealing items from a 56-year-old, unconscious man who in fact had just suffered a fatal heart attack while having sex with Stewart.

In a recent report of DUI excuses in the Swedish newspaper Nerikes Allehanda, a 56-year-old woman said that her driving had not been affected, even though she had been drinking, because she remembered to keep one eye closed so as not to be seeing double.


In November, Hummer H2 driver Yvonne Sinclair, 29, was convicted of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., following a crash in 2006 that killed two people. Ironically, Sinclair bought the Hummer with proceeds from a lawsuit settlement over the 2003 death of her boyfriend, who was killed by a drunken driver.


After it was ruled that Massachusetts resident Robert Aldrich had been illegally arrested, he applied for compensation from the state, since the law permits a person to recover lost income during a wrongful incarceration. However, a Suffolk County judge turned him down in November because she was unable to find any income that Aldrich might have earned. Aldrich has a long history of committing burglaries and admitted that he previously earned “off the books” money for home-improvement jobs.

“I would like an apology,” said Michael Wax, who filed a complaint with the Casino Control Commission after he was ejected from the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, N.J., in July because of complaints about his body odor. “There’s no question I stink,” he said at the time. “I’m not denying it. I do have an odor. I’ve been playing for 17 hours.” Nonetheless, Wax claimed that he should not have been treated so rudely in front of other patrons.

Creme de la Weird

Ms. Hang Mioku, 48, is winding down her 20-year obsession with cosmetic surgery. At one point, her face was bulked up with so much silicone that she earned the nickname “the standing fan” because her head was so large compared to her legs. Hang Mioku said she moved from South Korea to Japan in order to have better access to surgery and had convinced herself that each procedure made her more beautiful than the last. When she reached the point at which no surgeon would treat her, she began injecting her face with cooking oil. Finally, she was talked into face-reduction surgery, in which doctors removed 260 grams of foreign substances from her head and neck. However, she remains grotesquely misshapen, according to a November report in London’s Daily Telegraph.

2008 Chuck Shepherd

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