Reality Round-Up: The Weird and Wacky Whip-a-Round

The lights seem to be flashing more and more these days (ABC-15)

The lights seem to be flashing more and more these days (ABC-15)

True to form, I spent some time surfing through different news websites earlier in an effort to find a subject for today’s edition of the Reality Round-Up. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I look for ways to connect stories in an interesting and unique way (I hope) and normally have no problem doing so… at least not until today.

For whatever reason, story after story caught my eye, but only a few of them seemed related enough to include in this forum. That’s when something occurred to me: Who says the stories have to be easy to connect?

The obvious answer is, of course, ME. I put the pressure on myself to “round up” similar news stories, but this also means I can remove the pressure as I see fit. So for this installment of the RRU, all bets are off. What follows are stories I found both interesting and worthy of sharing. And if they seem random, disorganized or even off-the-wall, at least you know why.

If there was such a thing as attention deficit blogging, then this post would undoubtedly qualify. I just hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it… pressure-free, of course.

VANCOUVER, WASHINGTON

Crystal meth use in this country appears to be on the rise. And anyone familiar with the drug, its effects or its potential consequences can tell you that it truly is some “bad shit.” People who abuse meth lose muscle mass, age considerably in a short time—some even becoming unrecognizable after only a year or two—and tend to do some of the craziest things ever imagined.

Kelly the Witch Killer (KOIN-6 News)

Kelly the Witch Killer (KOIN-6 News)

Enter Neal Cedric Kelly, a 26-year-old meth addict who now faces first-degree murder charges for stabbing 43-year-old mother Jennie Brill to death last Saturday… because he thought she was a witch!

The killing occurred when a meth-soaked Kelly got into a violent knife fight with Nicholas Hammann over $40. For some reason, he spared Hammann and instead stabbed Brill, allegedly because he thought she was a witch. Another man—Sterling Shaver—stepped in to help Brill, but Kelly stabbed him, as well. He was critically wounded, but Brill died at the scene.

The police were called to the home on 89th Avenue but when they confronted Kelly, he threw a bookshelf at them and tried to flee through a window. He failed, of course, and was arrested a short time later. Oddly enough, he had just been released from jail a few days earlier, but now looks to be heading back there for a long, long time.

I can’t help thinking that if Kelly had selected marijuana instead of meth as his recreational drug of choice, none of this likely would have happened. After all, stoners seem more interested in satisfying “the munchies” than taking innocent lives.

EDWARDSVILLE, ILLINOIS

This story is a heartbreaker, so get the tissues ready!

On Sunday, police in Madison County received an emergency call about a 5-year-old who was unresponsive: Torian Whittaker. When they arrived on the scene a short time later, they discovered that not only was he unresponsive; he was dead.

At the time of Torian’s death, his mother—27-year-old Toria Coleman—was shopping for his birthday present and left her son and his 7-year-old brother with Tavon Ludy, her fiancé. Ludy was known to be physically abusive—even by Coleman herself—but on this day—Torian’s birthday—his abuse took a deadly turn.

According to investigators, Ludy was trying to discipline Torian and punched him in the chest. It was this punch that sent the child collapsing to the floor, where his life would eventually end. Ludy now faces charges of first-degree murder and aggravated battery to a child, while Coleman is being charged with child endangerment. Their bonds have been set at $550,000 and $50,000, respectively.

Some people simply should not be allowed to have children or to even be around them. And these two are perfect examples of why their parents should have used more effective contraception. Anyone willing to hurt a child should not be permitted to walk among us, so I’m glad these losers are finally off the streets.

Fact or Fiction? Not so easy to answer any more (Patterson/Gimlin/Corbis)

Fact or Fiction? Not so easy to answer any more (Patterson/Gimlin/Corbis)

PHOENIX, ARIZONA

Is it possible that Bigfoot really does exist?

This is what researchers in Arizona hoped to prove in a five-year study costing more than half a million dollars—the Sasquatch Genome Project. A businessman named Adrian Erickson footed the bill… pun intended.

The study began with the high-definition enhancement of that grainy 1967 footage showing an ape-like creature trudging through the California wilderness—the video most consider little more than an elaborate hoax. This new footage provided more detail, but the most interesting discovery wasn’t photographic at all; it was genetic.

DNA samples collected at the Bluff Creek site were analyzed and though some of them registered as human, others did not. Granted, this doesn’t necessarily prove the existence of Sasquatch, but it does raise some eyebrows. And the researchers responsible for the study have a theory to explain this mysterious beast.

“This creature does not follow the general rule,” said Dr. Melba Ketchum, a genetics scientist who helped lead this project. “What it does do is very different. We think it is a human hybrid.”

Does this mean Bigfoot is really out there somewhere? Maybe not since avoiding human detection for so long seems unlikely, but at least there’s a chance. Either way, I hope this mystery is solved in the near future so we can move on to more important things… like proving the existence of unicorns and leprechauns!

PHOENIX, ARIZONA… AGAIN!

Phoenix, Arizona was all over the news today, first for Bigfoot and again for something much more tragic: an untimely death.

Love is never a bad thing… unless it ends in your demise, as was the case for 24-year-old Amanda Mosley on Tuesday morning. During an embrace with her 18-year-old boyfriend, Mosley complained about the handgun he had tucked into his waistband. In an effort to please his woman, the young man withdrew his weapon with the intention of setting it aside so their hug could continue.

Unfortunately, fate stepped in and played yet another cruel joke.

As he was removing the handgun, it accidentally went off and the bullet struck Mosley, who was pronounced dead at the hospital a short time later. The case is currently being reviewed by the Maricopa County attorney’s office.

From love to loss with one speeding bullet… talk about being born under the wrong sign.

This road kill can kill you! (Getty Images/William Oeri)

This road kill can kill you! (Getty Images/William Oeri)

PALM COAST, FLORIDA

Oil stains, smeared paint, nails, road kill… these are things most of us have encountered on the road at one time or another. What most of us have not run across on the highway is something people in Central Florida recently saw at the intersection of Belle Terre Parkway and Palm Coast Parkway in Palm Bay on Tuesday: a live hand grenade.

Fortunately, the authorities called in the bomb squad and the grenade was diffused safely, but the mystery of how the explosive ended up in the road continues.

No universal background checks on all gun purchases and live grenades in the streets? What in the hell is going on in this country?

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

Our last story comes from that gambler’s Mecca in the desert known worldwide as Sin City: Las Vegas, Nevada. And I saved it for last since, to me, it shows just how close-minded—and illogical—people can be.

I wouldn’t expect you to know this, but that illogical thing was a subtle “shout out” to my man Spock from Star Trek: Into Darkness. I watched the majority of it during an all-night power outage last night, but missed the last five or ten minutes when the battery on my laptop died. Zachary Quinto is no Leonard Nimoy, mind you, but he did a pretty bang-up job in this J.J. Abrams’ sequel.

Not sure why I felt like sharing that, but it matters little. Now back to our story…

In honor of their 26th anniversary show, the topless dancers from Crazy Girls at the Riviera decided to donate a portion of ticket sales to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation, which according to its website is “dedicated to education and research about causes, treatment and the search for a cure” for breast cancer. They do good work, so please take some time to check them out HERE.

Unfortunately, the folks at Komen were not interested and refused the donation. They have some kind of policy not to partner with businesses that exploit or sexualize women, even if the money could be used for good. Executive Director Stephanie Kirby of the Southern Nevada office put it this way:

“It just doesn’t fall in line with who we are as an organization. There are too many survivors out there who no longer have the body part that is being displayed at a lot of these shows.”

Komen doesn't want these boobies to help (Elizabeth Watts/Fox 5)

Komen doesn’t want these boobies to help (Elizabeth Watts/Fox 5)

Breast cancer survivors may not have the body part being displayed any more, but don’t you think they would prefer to? I certainly do. And if they are also interested in preventing other women from experiencing the horror and suffering of this terrible disease, why reject money that could be used to accomplish this goal? It’s not like someone stumbled across a drug deal gone wrong, discovered a briefcase full of cash—No Country for Old Men style—and then tried to donate that to charity… although I would hope Komen would accept that money, too. If you ask me, there is nothing wrong with taking money used for evil and transforming it into money used for good, but it’s obvious that not everyone agrees.

And those poor dancers from Crazy Girls are still scratching their heads about the whole situation.

“We were all pretty shocked,” dancer Summer Ferguson explained later. “Why would they refuse?”

To the dancer known only as Victoria, her stage name, the rejection was even harder to swallow—I would write “no pun intended” after that sentence, but these are dancers we’re talking about, not hookers.

“It’s really hard not to take it personal,” Victoria said of the surprising turn of events. “Breast cancer runs in my family as well, so it’s really hurtful.”

I truly feel for you, Victoria, as well as all you Crazy Girls. Yes, I can understand Komen’s perspective, but I’ve never considered exotic dancing to be exploitation—unless women are being forced into this career, that is. Of course, that would be more like slavery than exploitation, but I care not for splitting hairs. The truth is that most exotic dancers make good money and use it to support themselves and their families. Not all of them are angels, mind you, but the Crazy Girls seem to have their hearts in the right place.

If you think about it, though, topless dancing could be seen as the ultimate celebration of female breasts. Instead of keeping them hidden and unappreciated, topless dancers set them free and actually get paid for it. Then they decide to donate the cash to a worthy cause—one that will keep people like themselves in business—and what happens?

Denied!

It truly is a shame. And believe me when I say that I am all about saving boobies… as we all should be.

So there you have it, peeps: another Reality Round-Up that you could call the Random Reality Round-Up. I hope you enjoyed it because odds are it won’t be my last.

Posted on October 2, 2013, in Perspectives and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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