Wedgies Are No Laughing Matter

When considering various methods of inflicting grievous embarrassment on unsuspecting victims, it is important to remember that the condition of having one's undergarments stuck between the buttocks, often resulting from a prankster's yank on one's drawers, is no laughing matter.

Unfortunately, it seems one Albany, N.Y., wedge-ucator failed to get the memo.

Mark Holley, a 41-year-old teacher at New Covenant Charter School, is facing misdemeanor charges of endangering the welfare of a child for giving a wedgie to a 10-year-old pupil, the Associated Press and Albany Times Union report.

Police say that Holley snuck up on the student and yanked his skivvies skyward, while in the locker room at a summer swimming program last year.

The student's mother reported the incident to the school, but the police didn't get word of it until January.

They made the arrest after interviewing both the wedgied and the wedgie-giver.

He'll Just Be Reading the Articles ... Really

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — It's not the same Playboy you may be used to seeing.

For one thing, this racy rag won't feature any naked women.

In fact, the photos of female models appearing in the edition of Playboy that goes on sale Friday in Indonesia aren't any more risque than those appearing in other magazines already being sold there.

Even that may not satisfy clerics in the mostly Muslim country, who wanted the magazine kept out of Indonesia entirely. A member of the country's Council of Clerics describes Playboy as "an icon of pornography."

Playboy is also planning to launch a version of the magazine without nude photos soon in India.

Forget Turkey Food — Rufus Prefers Takeout

CULDESAC, Idaho (AP) — Rufus the wild turkey has discovered the parking lot of a restaurant is a good place to get a meal — as long as he's careful not to become one.

"He doesn't come inside," cook Kristie McDaide told the Lewiston Tribune. "I'd throw him right in my pot."

Rufus is the last member of a five-bird flock that appeared in the area in October, eating grain that blew off semi trucks. He eventually discovered that food was easier to come by in the parking lot of the Jacques Spur Junction Cafe.

Rufus' pluck and boldness apparently carried him through Thanksgiving as diners feasted on turkey while watching Rufus in the parking lot. Now, area residents consider him something of a pet.

"He's a vain bird," said Brian Heinzerling, co-owner of the restaurant. "He's not shy, either. The other day, I practically had to shut his beak in the door or he would have followed me in."

Rufus' reputation has spread far enough to make him a tourist attraction.

"People have heard of him in other towns, Heinzerling said. "They stop in all the time to check him out."

"I've never seen a wild turkey you can pet before," said Mary Ann Mathison of Craigmont, who stopped in for a cup of coffee with her husband, Ralph.

Rufus, however, is a discriminating eater, turning down broccoli and cracked corn but accepting grapes, sunflower seeds and leaves.

"He's a naturalist," said Nancy Coleman, who lives next to the cafe.

Where Ya Bin?

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The must-have accessory on Nashville streets these days is versatile, durable and comes in brown and green. Just don't mind the odor.

Hundreds of the city's 96-gallon, wheeled garbage and recycling carts have been stolen since the city began distributing them free to residents last year.

"There's been a rash here recently of carts that have been taken," Public Works Director Billy Lynch said. "We're averaging 200 carts a month stolen."

Some of the stolen carts are being used by homeless people, who use them to collect recyclables for cash, especially aluminum cans left after Tennessee Titans football games at The Coliseum.

"I think our beautiful brown carts have taken the place of the Kroger [supermarket] carts," Lynch said.

Another man "came in the evening hours, took a cart, and was going down the street, getting in automobiles, taking out stereos and using that as a means to get around," he said.

Most of the cart thefts occur in rental neighborhoods with high resident turnover.

The carts, which were distributed to speed up trash collection by trucks with automated arms, are replaced under a $202,800 warranty paid by the city. That's $1.85 a cart.

My Houseplant's Totally Hosed ... Again

ITHACA, N.Y. (AP) — For home gardeners who don't want their flowers to tip over, a Cornell University horticulturist thinks he has the answer: Get the flowers a little tipsy with some hard liquor.

Giving some plants diluted alcohol — whiskey, vodka, gin or tequila — stunts the growth of a plant's leaves and stems but doesn't affect the blossoms, said William Miller, director of Cornell's Flower Bulb Research Program.

Miller reported his findings in the April issue of HortTechnology, a peer-reviewed journal of horticulture.

"I've heard of using alcohol for lots of things ... but never for dwarfing plants," said Charlie Nardozzi, a senior horticulturist with the National Gardening Association, a Vermont-based organization that promotes plant-based education.

"It sounded weird when I first heard about it, but our members say it works. I'm going to try it next year, just for curiosity," Nardozzi added.

Miller's study focused on paperwhite narcissus and other daffodils but he's also had promising results with tulips.

"I think with a little jiggering — no pun intended — the method will work for tulips, though I think it will not be as simple as with paperwhites," he said.

"While solutions greater than 10 percent alcohol were toxic, solutions between 4 and 6 percent alcohol stunted the paperwhites effectively," Miller said. "When the liquor is properly used, the paperwhites we tested were stunted by 30 to 50 percent, but their flowers were as large, fragrant and long-lasting as usual."

Miller isn't sure why the alcohol stunts plant growth but he has three theories that he is exploring.

He will be working this spring to see if a little booze works for amaryllis and such vegetables as tomatoes and peppers.

Imagine, he joked, you may be able to grow your own Bloody Mary.

Compiled by's Taylor Timmins.

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