Mental Floss

The Weird Week ending January 25th

Miss Cellania

Snakes on a Plane

Authorities in Vietnam seized a literal ton of ratsnakes packed into 60 boxes aboard a Vietnam Airline flight from Thailand.The snakes are a protected species, Ptyas Mucosus, and may have been smuggled out of Thailand bound for other parts of the world. Only a month ago, a similar shipment was confiscated aboard a Thai Airways flight.

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Rob Carter of Fort Worth, Texas arrived home from Chicago and collected his luggage at the airport -but picked up the wrong suitcase. When he opened the suitcase, a kitten jumped out!

"I must have jumped six feet into the air and screamed like a girl," said Carter.

A phone number on the cat's collar connected Carter with frantic cat owner Kelly Levy in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. Gracie Mae had snuck into her husband Seth's suitcase before he flew to Fort Worth. Carter took the cat to Seth Levy, who purchased a ticket to take Gracie Mae home to Florida.

Crook Called Cab for Getaway

Most burglars make arrangements to get away from the scene of the crime. But 22-year-old Gareth Waith of Cardiff, Wales called a taxi from the victim's house after he took $6800 in goods from his neighbor Katie Battiscombe while she was out. He was identified by the fingerprints he left behind and sentenced to three years in jail.

Bicycle-Riding Parrot Smuggler Foiled

Border guards in Dubki, Belarus confronted a man attempting to smuggle in 277 parrots, aboard a bicycle! The parrots were stuffed like sardines into six boxes. The man fled back to Ukraine, abandoning the birds and the bicycle. Two birds had died, and the rest will eventually go to petshops in Belarus.

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NASA Photo Shows Humanoid Figure on Mars

NASA's robot explorer Spirit sent back a picture taken at the Gusev Crater on Mars which appears to show an almost humanoid character. The picture bears an uncanny resemblance to the legendary Bigfoot. See a side-by-side comparison. Read what the Planetary Society has to say.

Cattle Rustlers Crash Car With Cow in Back Seat

Thieves in the state of Kedah, Malaysia somehow managed to get an adult cow into the back seat of a mid-sized sedan. They may have gotten away with the crime, if they hadn't crashed the car into a tree. The cow was injured in the accident, and local villagers slaughtered it. The rustlers escaped on foot. No word on the cause of the crash, although a cow in the backseat could have caused a distraction for the driver.

Man Wakes up at His Own Wake

Relatives has arranged a fine funeral for 81-year old Feliberto Carrasco of Angol, Chile. He was dressed in his finest suit for the wake, surrounded by family and friends. But then he woke up!

"I couldn't believe it. I thought I must be mistaken, and I shut my eyes," Carrasco's nephew Pedro told the daily Ultimas Noticias.

"When I opened them again, my uncle was looking at me. I started to cry and ran to get something to open up the coffin to get him out."

Carrasco said he wasn't in any pain.

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Michal Szybalski of Warsaw, Poland received a priority mail letter on January 3rd that was sent on December 20th. So he did the math. The letter traveled 11.1 kilometers in 294 hours, so its speed was 0.03775 kilometers per hour. Szybalski calculated that a garden snail travels at around 0.048 kilometers per hour, faster than the Warsaw mail service. Snail mail, indeed!