An ulcer remedy caused quite a stir in New York last month.
Federal employees streamed out of the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building (search) in downtown Manhattan, and a day care center on the premises was evacuated, after white powder was found in the sock of a man arriving for an immigration appointment around 9 a.m. on June 29.
After the initial commotion had died down, Tahir Taravari, a 55-year-old Staten Island resident originally from Macedonia, told the gathered security officials — from the police department, the fire department, the Federal Protective Service (search), the Joint Terrorism Task Force (search), the city Office of Emergency Management and the city Department of Environmental Protection — that the substance was merely "baking powder" he stirred into water to relieve his ulcer.
"He comes into a federal building with white powder in his socks," a federal source told the New York Daily News. "The guy is a total knucklehead."
The building's air-conditioning system was shut off, making things a bit sticky at the beginning of a hot summer workday.
Taravari was given a decontamination shower and a white plastic jumpsuit to wear before being interrogated, The New York Times reported.
He ended up getting a summons for creating a disturbance, but still faces unrelated charges of being an illegal immigrant, the Daily News said.
Officials told the Times the substance ended up being baking soda, not baking powder.
— Thanks to Out There reader Tony L.
Parents Hire Stripper for Son's Birthday Party
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A couple pleaded guilty Thursday to hiring a stripper for their son's 16th birthday party and were sentenced to two years probation.
Landon and Anette Pharris, who were charged with contributing the delinquency of a minor, also were ordered to take parenting classes.
The parents hired the stripper to perform at a September party attended by about a dozen young people.
Cassandra Joyce Park, 29, who police say used the stage name "Sassy," danced for a few hours before partygoers took up a collection and paid her $150 more to fully disrobe, Anette Pharris said.
The stripper and the man she was with were also granted probation.
Police were tipped off to the party by a photo developer at a drug store who saw pictures of the occasion.
Pharris said after being arrested that she tried to do something special for her son.
"We even had grandpa there," she said.
Bee-Infested Church Oozes Honey From Walls
KNOX, Pa. (AP) — One could say that St. Mark United Church of Christ (search) is bee-deviled.
The church in Clarion County, about 60 miles north of Pittsburgh, has been infested with bees in its walls for about seven years.
The church tried an exterminator and that didn't work. Now the problem has gotten so bad that honey oozes through its walls.
The church has hired McCool's Wildlife Removal of Rocky Grove to remove the honey, seal the damaged walls — and relocate an estimated 1 million bees to a local bee keeper.
Eric McCool, who owns the business, said it typically takes about a day to remove bees from an infested building, but the church is so badly infested it will take three or four days.
The bees aren't crazy about the move. McCool has been stung more than 100 times this week.
"I ended up going to the emergency room. Even though I'm not allergic, any time you have a large amount of venom, you have a toxic reaction," McCool told The Derrick of Oil City for Thursday's editions.
Church maintenance man Lee Stroup said the congregation plans to worship as normal Sunday.
"We've never had to hold church elsewhere. We'll have church this Sunday," said Stroup. "We just wanted them gone so no one gets stung."
Pleasure Cruise Leads to Unpleasant Sentence
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Ten days on the open sea has led to two years in a locked cell for Philip Charles Mesure.
He was sentenced to two years in federal prison for stealing a $200,000 sailboat and taking it on a 10-day joy ride last year.
Mesure told investigators that during his voyage, he sailed 190 miles in one day and weathered storms alone, federal prosecutor John Stuart Bruce said.
Mesure claimed he was given permission to stay on the boat one night but set sail because he was threatened by bikers, Bruce said.
The boat, named the Leah Ward, had been docked on a marina in St. Augustine, Fla., last year when it was stolen. Mesure was arrested in April 2004 when he docked in Beaufort.
Dastardly Postage-Stamp Thieves Caught
FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — A father and son are accused of stuffing envelopes — with more than $200,000 in stolen stamps.
Joseph Robert Baker, 51, and Matthew Robert Baker, 21, both of Fort Myers, were indicted Tuesday for the alleged thefts from June to November 2004.
The men stole the stamps from post offices in Florida, Ohio and Kentucky to support their drug habits, Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas Malloy said.
"They would go to the self-service areas of post offices, where there are no attendants," Malloy said. "They'd grab an express mail package, stuff as many stamps as they could in it and then rush out."
Surveillance videos linked the men to the thefts, he said.
The men's first court appearances have not yet been scheduled.
'Whorehouse Days' Called Off
GILBERT, Minn. (AP) — "Whorehouse Days" are a bust in Gilbert.
Organizers had big plans for their first festival this weekend, including a four-poster bed race, a beer mug-sliding contest and a showdown for best-dressed madam.
But the City Council, which, as earlier reported in Out There, was never happy about the idea, is now refusing to rent out public buildings for the event.
Almost one-third of the city's businesses signed a petition against the event and dozens of residents protested at council meetings.
"The City Council's acting like it's the Moral Majority or something," said lead organizer Bob Cap. "They really played a number on us."
Organizers had promised all the events would have been rated G or PG.
Gilbert's history actually includes a period when it was known as a place of saloons and prostitution, in the early years of the 20th century when mining and timber-cutting were in full swing.
But Cap acknowledged the name was picked as a marketing tool.
"We figured the shock value would cause some people to say, 'Hey, let's go check that out.'"
Compiled by FOXNews.com's Paul Wagenseil.
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