Deliberate shot fails

Shannon Egeland, 41, already convicted of helping run a mortgage-fraud operation during the 2004-2008 real estate boom, pleaded guilty this month to the subsequent crime of deliberately having himself shot to gain his judge's sympathy (and to collect on disability insurance bought the week before). Egeland, scheduled to start a 10-year sentence for the mortgage fraud, told the judge he had been assaulted by gunfire when he stopped in traffic to help a pregnant woman, but in reality he had ordered his teenage son to shoot him in the legs with a 20-gauge shotgun. (Source: News of the Weird)

The perfect dinner companion

Who was 87-year-old Patty Ris lucky enough to be sitting beside when she choked on her dinner at the Deupree House retirement community in Hyde Park, Ohio? The 96-year-old inventor of the famous Heimlich manoeuvre , who also lives at the facility. According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, the maitre d' initially ran to help but saw the doctor was already preparing to do so himself. While Henry Heimlich has demonstrated the life-saving method that he invented decades ago, he had never performed it on a choking victim until now. Nevertheless, his technique was good and the offending "piece of hamburger" was quickly dislodged.

Taking what you don't need

"I can appreciate the couch conditions [in yesterday's Sideswipe]," writes a reader. "We have a 'trading table' in our football clubrooms where members donate gear they've outgrown for younger/smaller members to help themselves to, and have put up a similar sign advising people to take only what they will use this season, after I found two women taking several pairs of boots and shinpads each in a variety of sizes because 'the kids will grow into them'. Selfish and greedy."

Aaron Fox of Greenvale thought Sideswipe might appreciate the surnames of the two Invercargill Roller Derby League members.
Aaron Fox of Greenvale thought Sideswipe might appreciate the surnames of the two Invercargill Roller Derby League members. "They take their sport seriously in the South," he adds. Photo / Supplied

Neighbours take family's free bikes for a ride

A reader writes: "A couple of years ago my two teenage kids had outgrown their bikes. I couldn't be bothered with listing them on Trade Me so, feeling generous, I placed them both (the bikes, not the kids) at the top of the drive with a 'free to a good home' sign on them. Within the hour both bikes had been taken. The following Sunday, our affluent neighbour across the street was having a garage sale ... and there were our two bikes being sold for $50 each or nearest offer."

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Got a Sideswipe? Send your pictures, links and anecdotes to Ana at ana.samways@nzherald.co.nz