Irish Town Lobbies for the Harlot's Return

Won't you take me to Harlot town?

Visitors to one Irish county may soon be able to ask just that if local residents get their way.

Agence France-Presse reports that villagers in Doon, Ireland, in County Limerick are on their way to winning a fight to put the Harlot back in the town's name.

In 2003, Ireland's language minister ruled that Doon or Dun Bleisce, Gaelic for Fort of the Harlot, would have to change its name to An Dun or simply the Fort.

Apparently, the Harlot was quite popular among Doon's denizens as they've been fighting for her return ever since.

"I believe that [phrase] was not a derogatory term in those days," said Mary Jackman, a local councilor. "It would have meant that she was a strong or powerful woman in the locality."

Now 1,000 petition signatures later, the villagers have swayed the language minister to reconsider. In a letter to the nation's Placenames Commission, Minister Eamon O. Cuiv said that though An Dun is the proper name for the town, there's room for Dun Bleisce too.

"There is historical evidence to support both versions of the Irish name," O. Cuiv said. "I am open to accede to their request and it is legally permissible within the existing legislation for me to do so."

It will take about a month for the Harlot to return, and villagers couldn't be happier.

"I am really thrilled," Jackman said. "Signposts had always been Dun Bleisce and I think it was bureaucracy or a little glitch in interpretation that changed it."

Somebody's Got to Off That Sucker in Cellblock C

DENVER (AP) — Three prisoners in Colorado say their lives have been threatened — by mosquitoes.

The inmates at Walsenburg and Limon prisons sued, saying they were at risk of contacting West Nile virus or other diseases after they were bitten repeatedly by mosquitoes and suffered "the emotional and mental distress of whether or not each mosquito's bite would result in death or serious bodily injury."

Stephen G. Glover, Alan Smith and Michael Freeman said the bites caused high fever, headache, neck stiffness and muscle weakness.

"Each attack constituted bodily injury, which the [Department of Corrections] had the power to prevent, but consciously elected not to," wrote the inmates, acting as their own attorneys.

But the Colorado Court of Appeals upheld a lower court's decision to throw out their case.

Prison officials said no confirmed cases of West Nile virus have ever been found in the prison population, and inmates are given mosquito repellant.

This News Brought to You by the Bunny Liberation Front

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — A truck carrying 5,000 rabbits to a slaughterhouse overturned on a major Hungarian highway Monday, sending authorities on a hopping big bunny hunt.

The M1 highway, the main connection between the capital of Hungary and Austria, was closed for several hours in the morning while authorities tried to recapture them, Highway Patrol spokeswoman Viktoria Galik said. The road reopened in the afternoon.

The truck carrying the rabbits was struck by another truck whose driver had fallen asleep, Galik said.

"Most of them were hopping around the freeway but some also stayed in their broken cages," she said.

Both drivers were unharmed in the accident, but Galik said some 500 rabbits were killed. By midday, 4,400 bunnies had been collected and taken away from the scene.

About 100 of them got a lucky break, hopping away from capture and the slaughterhouse into fields surrounding the highway.

"Those 100 are free to go. We will not collect them," Galik said.

The rabbits that were recaptured may be taken to the slaughterhouse soon, Galik said, but had no further details.

The accident happened 28 miles west of Budapest on the M1 heading toward the Austrian capital, Vienna.

Local Pharmacist With a Prescription for Danger

COLUMBUS, Wis. (AP) — It's not often that a bomb squad is asked to help clean up a pharmacy.

But experts say 2-ounces of picric acid in the basement of a drug store packed the punch of nearly half a stick of dynamite.

Store employees found the sample as they were cleaning out old chemicals. Store owner Nick Sharrow is relieved that the local bomb squad safely destroyed the sample Friday.

"This is very similar to TNT," he said.

Picric acid is not volatile as a liquid. But as it ages, it can form highly explosive crystals, Sharrow said. The sample discovered on the basement shelf dated back to around World War I.

Picric acid was used as an antiseptic and in medical formulations to treat malaria, herpes and smallpox.

The drug store and apartments above were evacuated and the street closed to traffic during the removal.

Not the Bundle She Was Expecting

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) — Friday the 13th turned out to be lucky for one woman. Sara Wrobel narrowly missed a 15-to-20 ton piece of construction equipment that became unhinged from a dump truck and fell just in front of her as she backed out of her driveway.

She said she walked out of her house a few minutes early Friday and pulled out of her driveway, and as she waited for her garage door to close the equipment — a rock screener — fell.

"I heard this weird noise, and the thing crashed right in front of me," said Wrobel, who is pregnant and due any day.

The screen became unhinged from the dump truck, hit a telephone pole, flipped over the embankment and landed on the driveway, she said.

Wrobel was not too upset about the damage to her concrete, for which the equipment's owner Kraemer Co. will pay, she said.

"They were wonderful," she said of the company. "I was actually really calm. The driver came by and was shaking like a leaf. It was an accident. You don't plan these things."

Compiled by's Sara Bonisteel.

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