Special Report Grapevine: Entire High School Class Loses Diplomas

$50,000 Mistake: If you are going to build a memorial to a local icon you better make sure you get the right icon. Ottawa officials ordered a $50,000 piece of art to commemorate Jack Purcell, a local man who dedicated his time to fixing hockey sticks for neighborhood children. The Ottawa Citizen reports what the city got was 10 un-strung badminton rackets in dedication to a five-time badminton national champion also named Jack Purcell, but not the one from Ottawa.

A local ward councilor is not pleased, saying the creator must have "Googled Jack Purcell and the only thing that comes up is the badminton player. The Ottawa hockey stick helper out of kids doesn't come up on Google."

Hold On To Your Hats!: A time-honored graduation tradition..the tossing of the caps in the air..cost an entire class of high school graduates their diplomas -- at least temporarily. The students at Ridgewood High in suburban Chicago were warned not to throw them. The superintendent explained his reasoning for withholding the diplomas--"We expect dignified behavior. In past ceremonies, people have been hit by flying caps. We'd just as soon not have graduates leaving with cuts and black eyes."

Today, officials said they had rethought the decision and will send out the diplomas immediately.

Scared of Heights?: Finally, A scary event at the second tallest building in the western hemisphere. Standing on the glass floor at the top of the Willis Tower in Chicago, over 1,300 feet in the air, can be frightening., but not nearly as scary as the glass starting to crack under your feet. That is just what happened to members of a California family. One of them told the Chicago Tribune he could feel the floor cracking.

A spokesman for the tower says there was no danger and only the protective coating cracked -- as it is designed to do -- to protect the glass.

 

Tommy Vietor tells Bret "Dude, it (Benghazi) was like two years ago..."

Former Obama National Security Spokesman Tommy Vietor joined Bret live on set for Special Report  and when asked about whether he changed the word attacks to demonstrations in the Susan Rice talking points, Vietor said he did not remember because-- "Dude, this was like two years ago.."

Watch the exchange and share your thoughts with us here or via Twitter @BretBaier--

 

Bret interviews Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu

Bret Baier will interview Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today to discuss the stalled effort by the Obama administration to broker a peace deal with the Palestinian Authority as well as the implications from Iran’s nuclear program, the ongoing civil war in Syria as well as the overall security outlook for the region. Please join us tonight at 6pmET for Special Report on Fox News Channel.

 

Special Report Grapevine: Strippers for Seniors?

Go It Alone: With tax day approaching, you might want to take a second look at who's crunching the numbers for your return.  A new government report finds that just 2 of 19 mainly unregulated tax preparers calculated the correct refund for their clients.  Unregulated preparers are those not subject to oversight by the government and they are not lawyers or CPA’s. A whopping 55% of all tax preparers fall into that category.  The Government Accountability Office found errors ranging from getting the taxpayer $52  less to $3,700 more than they were entitled to. But not all were mistakes-- some were outright fraud.

In some egregious cases, preparers calculated a taxpayer's refund in person and skipped the line that shows who did the work. then after the taxpayer leaves, the taxpayer falsifies the math to boost the refund, files the return and pockets the difference.  and worst of all, unless the taxpayer can prove what happened, they're on the hook for the money when the IRS finds out.

You might be better off wading through the paperwork by yourself. The report finds 60%  of professionally prepared returns had mistakes compared to 50% when completed by the taxpayer alone.

Watch Where You Point That Thing: A seventh grader says he was suspended-- because another student claimed he pretended his pencil was a gun. Ethan Chaplin tells News12 New Jersey he was just twisting his pencil around a pen cap during math class when a classmate who had been bullying him accused him of making gun motions.  Policy dictates the school must investigate if anyone claims to feel threatened.

Ethan's dad says the boy had to undergo a five hour physical and psychological evaluation. The principal tells the Huffington Post there's more to the story but he cannot comment because of privacy laws.  Ethan has since returned to school. 

Stripper For Seniors: And finally, an update to a story we brought you yesterday in our outside the beltway segment. Turns out the New York man suing his mother's nursing home for hiring a male stripper may have a hard time proving his case.

A picture surfaced showing 85 year old Bernice Youngblood putting a dollar in the dancer's underwear. Her son alleges the staff hired the man for quote perverse pleasure, but the nursing home's attorney says the activities panel-- made up of residents-- voted to hire the dancer and provided $250. The New York post reports the strip tease has attracted the attention of the state attorney general who is looking into the case. 

Grapevine: A Man's Job, Paying Putin & The Bald Truth!

A MAN'S JOB

One thing missing as world leaders meet for a second day at the Nuclear Security Summit at the Hague… women servers. A Dutch newspaper reports the caterer decided only men would be allowed to serve lunch to the leaders of 53 countries. The caterer is defending his decision, saying he wanted a uniform look among the servers… which apparently…women cannot pull off. 

PAYING PUTIN

As president Obama pursues sanctions against Russia for its incursion into Crimea the US is paying Russia more than 70-million dollars to hitch a ride into space.  A Soyuz rocket was scheduled to take off today with NASA astronaut Steve Swanson joining two Russian cosmonauts on a trip to the International Space Station.  Since NASA's manned space program missions ended the only way into space is to carpool with the Russians at a price tag of 70.7 million for one seat.  A NASA spokesman says the ongoing conflict between the U-S and Russia here on Earth will have no bearing in space.

THE BALD TRUTH

And finally, a Colorado girl's bold move of support for her friend with cancer got her kicked out of school. Nine-year old Kamryn shaved her head in solidarity with her good friend Delaney who is undergoing chemotherapy. But what many saw as a heartwarming display of true friendship the Caprock Academy saw as a dress code violation. School policy bans shaved heads on girls. Kamryn was told not to come back unless she was wearing a wig or her natural hair grew back.  School officials told Kamryn's mom they would not make an exception, but late yesterday-- after word of the suspension spread-- the school changed its tune. It has allowed Kamryn to return while it reviews the policy.

For more fresh pickings follow us on Twitter @SRGrapevine

Special Report Grapevine: A guacamole crisis?

Guac in Jeopardy?!?!  Now this is a climate crisis that could serve as a real wake-up call.  Reports that Chipotle may get rid of guacamole if climate change gets worse has lots of people up in arms.  In an annual financial report to investors, Chipotle warned that if weather changes made it more expensive to get products (specifically, avocados), they may take it off the menu.  Today Chipotle says we can all relax- for now- it’s all just legal jargon we wouldn’t understand.

That Empty Feeling  A NYC man is suing—for everything—after a junk removal company accidentally cleaned out the wrong apartment, and took everything he owned to the dump.  They were hired by the landlord to clean out apartment 2B, but they went to 2D instead.  He came home from work to an empty home—they only left his TV and PS3 behind.

Legal, But Still Annoying  Grand Rapids, Michigan is repealing a city wide ban on being annoying.  Current law reads: “no person shall willfully annoy another person.”  

SR Grapevine: Will dolphins and humans be equal in Romania?

The Grapevine

We had to make room for Center Seat tonight, but we didn't want you to miss out on the fresh pickings of the political "Grapevine." Thanks for watching!

Center Seat: Senator Mike Lee

Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) will join Bret and the panel of George Will, Steve Hayes and Elise Viebeck tonight for an exclusive in studio edition of Center Seat.

Senator Lee, who delivered the Tea Party response to President Obama’s SOTU address, will discuss what’s really contributing to the nation’s income gap, the plan for Obamacare, how to move the party forward, and much more.

From Brit to Bret: A Primetime Vowel Change

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