In search of your evil twin or maybe just a good stunt double to share your love of talking puppets and putting on amateur variety shows for strangers? You may not need to look any further than your computer … at least, that was the case with Darryl R. Peebles.
Peebles, a minister in North Carolina, was surfing the Web one day when he — as many a bored office worker or otherwise unproductive narcissist before him — entered his name into a search engine to see what he could find, Reuters reports.
As fate would have it, he found himself … sort of.
Darryl R. Peebles found Daryl R. Peebles, a government worker living in the Australian island state of Tazmania. Through a series of e-mails, Peebles and Peebles discovered that they shared much more than just a name.
They were born in the same year.
Each has three children, two of whom were born in 1975 and 1977.
Their dads were both small-town guys with similar jobs.
Freaky? Maybe. But the similarities don’t stop there.
Both Peebles claim to be performers, music lovers and fans of magic and ventriloquism.
After communicating for over a year, the Peebles from down under visited the American Peebles in North Carolina, where they put on two variety shows for about 400 people.
"It is as through we have known each other forever. Our minds and our personalities are so much alike. It's as if we were brothers," Peebles the minister said.
"What are the chances of finding someone with your name with so many similarities. I still can't believe it has happened."
Locating and digging up a 50-year-old Plymouth may prove to be the easy part in completing a contest started in 1957.
Finding the winner of the car, now there is the trick.
Members of the committee charged with unearthing the Plymouth Belvedere buried in a time capsule by the Tulsa County Courthouse met Monday to consider contingencies.
To complicate matters, committee members don't even know for sure what information is on the entry forms.
"From what we hear, it may be only a name, an address and a guess," Chairwoman Sharon King Davis said Monday.
All of this came from a seemingly simple start. To mark the 50th anniversary of statehood, organizers ran a contest in conjunction with the car's burial on June 15, 1957.
The contest had only two rules: The person coming closest to Tulsa's population in 2007 got the car and a savings account that was started with $100 in 1957.
If that person was dead, the car and the savings account would go to his or her heirs.
That was it. There are no further instructions on what to do if the winner or winner's heirs can't be found, or if there are 10 winners and 100 heirs claiming the prize.
A few puzzles have been worked out. The savings account was tracked down, despite having gone through the failures and mergers of several savings and loans. The exact dimensions of the time capsule vault have been identified.
But the big question — how to determine a winner — remains.
Determining the winning number will be relatively easy — it will be Tulsa's population on a specific date as estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau.
Ideally, one person and one only will have guessed that number and not only will still be alive but will reside at the same address as 50 years ago.
The odds of that are probably greater than the odds of winning the contest.
Far more likely is a winner named John Smith or something equally generic who left Tulsa in 1958 — with his wife and 10 kids.
Or perhaps the best guess was given by someone now long deceased who left behind four children who haven't spoken to each other since the fight over who got Mom's china.
Some people think the car should go to an individual, no matter how long it takes.
"I think that was clearly the intent," committee member John Ehrling said.
But others, concerned about sorting through endless ownership claims and potential legal entanglements, think the car should go to a museum or be auctioned for charity if a single winner cannot be identified quickly.
Otherwise, Davis cautioned, "we could still be trying to figure it out in 2009."
Thanks to Out There readers Billy B. and Messy T.
Is That Bill Shakespeare I See Over There?
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A retired mechanical designer with a penchant for poor prose took a tired detective novel scene and made it even worse, earning him top honors in San Jose State University's annual Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest for bad writing.
Jim Guigli of Carmichael submitted 64 entries into the contest. The judges were most impressed, or revolted perhaps, by his passage about a comely woman who walks into a detective's office.
"Detective Bart Lasiter was in his office studying the light from his one small window falling on his super burrito when the door swung open to reveal a woman whose body said you've had your last burrito for a while, whose face said angels did exist, and whose eyes said she could make you dig your own grave and lick the shovel clean," Guigli wrote.
"The judges were impressed by his appalling powers of invention," said Scott Rice, a professor in SJSU's Department of English and Comparative Literature.
He has organized the bad writing contest since its inception in 1982.
Guigli will receive "a pittance" for his winning entry, a bit of cash he said he may put toward the purchase of a motor boat. His work for the contest represents a sampling of a career that never quite developed for him.
"At one time I thought I wanted to write to detective novels," Guigli told the Associated Press Monday. "I never got a good start on it."
His bad start was to be celebrated Tuesday, when the contest results were to be officially announced by Rice.
The contest is named for Edward George Bulwer-Lytton, whose 1830 novel "Paul Clifford" began with the oft-mocked, "It was a dark and stormy night."
You Know You've Made It When ...
COVINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A man suspected of a dozen bank robberies called a northern Kentucky police detective to make sure he watched an episode of "America's Most Wanted."
The episode of the crime-fighting show featured a profile of the fugitive, Warren Lee Back.
"It was kind of an odd thing. I've never had a fugitive call me before," said Detective Mike McGuffey with the Covington Police Department.
Back was caught by FBI agents in Indianapolis last week, less than two weeks after the call to McGuffey. He met Back when Back lived in Covington — well before he was linked to a series of bank robberies in the Dayton and Cincinnati areas.
McGuffey was working as an off-duty security guard at a bingo parlor where Back was accused of stealing pull-tab bingo cards.
Pestered by 'Obedient but Malevolent' Ghosts? Get in Line
NEW DELHI (AP) — Malevolent ghosts stealing your chickens and torturing you in the night? Who you gonna call?
For farmer Sunil Das, his first call was the police, who laughed at what they thought was a joke, the Hindustan Times newspaper reported Tuesday.
But a judge in India's northeastern state of Assam saw little humor in Das' allegation that ghosts controlled by his neighbors were making off with his poultry at night. Instead of laughing, the judge ordered police to get to work and find the culprits, the newspaper reported.
In his complaint, Sunil Das accused his neighbors of using their "obedient but malevolent" ghosts, "subjecting me to physical and mental torture," the newspaper reported.
Das said his neighbors were notorious for using black magic against people they had a grudge against.
Superstitions and belief in ghosts are widespread across India, particularly in rural villages.
Nevertheless, police working the case said it was a first for them.
"We have dealt with hardcore criminals and armed militants but this is the first time we are required to pursue a case with a spooky angle to it," the newspaper quoted a local police officer as saying.
"We are yet to crack the case but investigations are on," said the unidentified officer.
The Best Darn Petrified Poop Tosser I Ever Saw
CHADRON, Neb. (AP) — A 30-year-old Cheyenne, Wyo., man is this year's buffalo chip-tossing champion.
Anthony Salaz threw a dried buffalo dropping 126-feet-1-inch on Saturday to win the World Championship Buffalo Chip Toss held in Chadron.
The event is part of Chadron's annual Fur Trade Days celebration.
Placing second was last year's winner: 25-year old Ryan Bohnenkamp of Omaha at 114-feet, 3 inches. Three-time world champion Ron Miller of Chadron placed third.
In the women's competition, 26-year-old Dayna Spencer of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, took the title.
The event has been running more than 20 years and organizers have said in the past that they have not heard of anywhere else having a buffalo chip throwing contest. And they say no one has challenged their claim that the event is the world championship.
Compiled by FOXNews.com's Taylor Timmins.
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