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Six Flags Lets Bug Eaters Butt in Line

Think nothing could be more disgusting than barf on a roller coaster?

Think again.

We would be willing to bet that your everyday victim of motion sickness would have nothing on the queasy thrill-seeker who just scarfed down a giant hissing cockroach. Too gross to be true? 'Fraid not.

Six Flags Great America is double-dog-daring roller coaster aficionados to eat a live Madagascar hissing cockroach — always a favorite on gross-out reality shows — in exchange for frontsies in line at the park's rides.

The Associated Press reports the promotion — part of the park's annual Halloween-themed FrightFest — isn't a fan favorite of health department officials, who caution that chowing down on live cockroaches could increase risks of gastrointestinal illness and allergies.

But Six Flags officials insist adding a little cockroach crunch to one's diet is perfectly safe.

Those daring enough to dine on the dirty bugs will be required to sign waivers and pay admission fees, but line-jumping privileges — for them and three of their friends — will be unlimited.

And in case the whole cockroach sushi thing isn't your bag, the park will be hosting a cooked cockroach-eating contest as well.

Six Flags spokesman James Taylor says he wants to see a bug biter top the Guinness World Record for eating cockroaches — 36 in a sitting.

"I've heard people say, 'Wow,' 'Ew,' a lot of one-worders," Taylor said. "A lot have said that they wouldn't eat a cockroach, but they sure would like to see someone else do it."

It's All a Part of Their Sinister Quest for World Domination ... Duh

NEW YORK (AP) — The average American home now has more television sets than people.

That threshold was crossed within the past two years, according to Nielsen Media Research. There are 2.73 TV sets in the typical home and 2.55 people, the researchers said.

With televisions now on buses, elevators and in airport lobbies, that development may have as much to do with TV's ubiquity as an appliance as it does conspicuous consumption. The popularity of flat-screen TVs now make it easy to put sets where they haven't been before.

Rick Melen, a facilities manager, has three sets in the Somers, N.Y., home he shares with his wife. That doesn't count the bathroom set that broke down and hasn't been replaced or the speakers installed near their hot tub, allowing them to watch a wide screen set through a window.

"It's really just a matter of where your living takes place, what rooms you tend to spend your time in," Melen said on Thursday. "Other appliances you can move from room to room but if you have cable, you can't move a television."

His wife might want to watch something while she's cooking while he's got a baseball game on downstairs, he said.

David and Teresa Leon of Schenectady, N.Y. and their four-year-old twins have seven sets, plus an eighth they haven't set up yet. They include TVs in both the parents' and kids' bedrooms, the family and living rooms and one in the kitchen that is usually turned to a news station.

"No one ever sits down for more than a few seconds in this house," said Teresa, a stenographer. "This way you can watch TV while you're moving from room to room, folding laundry or taking care of the kids."

And Now This From the I-See-London-I-See-France Dept.

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — A book of rhymes handed out to kindergarten classes across Maine is being criticized by some parents as inappropriate.

"Schoolyard Rhymes" is a compilation of 50 verses included in bags given to 18,000 pupils through the Read With ME literacy project supported by Gov. John Baldacci and his wife Karen.

Karen Baldacci, who is a former kindergarten teacher, spearheads Maine Reads, the nonprofit umbrella organization for Read With ME that is funded by Verizon, the Bangor Daily News reported. The group receives no state money.

A few of the rhymes have raised some eyebrows. For example, one says, "Ladies and gentlemen, Take my advice, Pull down your pants And slide on the ice."

Another one says, "Girls go to Mars to get candy bars. Boys go to Jupiter to get more stupider."

Erica Smith of Hampden, mother of a 5-year-old son who goes to the McGraw School, said the book is "completely inappropriate."

"It's rude. There are words in there that I don't allow in my house," said Smith, who complained to her son's teacher as well as the school principal. She also called the governor's office to voice her displeasure.

Since the book was distributed, the governor's office has received about a dozen e-mails and phone calls from people who said they were "uncomfortable" with the book, said Crystal Canney, spokeswoman for the governor.

"The committee obviously feels that parents should use their own judgment on what they feel is appropriate for their children," she said.

Officials noted that the rhymes, which have been around for generations, are meant to be taken lightly and that the intent was never to offend.

Sarah Cecil, coordinator of the Portland-based Maine Reads, said this year marks the first time anyone has complained about the program.

Most of the evaluation forms that accompanied the book were positive, she said. "At the same time, we're sorry if we offended people and we can respect each parent's or educator's decisions about whether to read the book or not," she said.

Rumors of His Death Have Been ... Extremely Amusing

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Artist and retired art professor Jim Schinneller's love of laughter didn't end with his death.

When an obituary for the lifelong jokester appeared in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, it was accompanied with a photo — of the back of his head.

"It's a family that goes for a little bit of one-upmanship," Jim Schinneller Jr. explained to a Journal Sentinel columnist.

He said the family couldn't resist sending it in, giving his dad a chance for one more joke.

The senior Schinneller's companion, Gloria Bosben, said that she took the photo as a joke.

"He had just gotten a haircut and it was a sunny day out," she said. "He said, 'I want you to take a picture of the back of my head. I want to give it to the kids for Christmas."'

So he turned around and she snapped the picture outside his suburban Fox Point home. He gave 5-by-7-inch framed copies to each of his four grown children and Bosben's brother two years ago.

Family members said it was just the kind of thing they could always expect from Schinneller, a retired professor of art at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee who died at home Sept. 9 at the age of 81.

"He liked to buck the system," his daughter Diane Colla said. "He enjoyed showing people how absurd life was."

Compiled by FOXNews.com's Taylor Timmins.

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