Sideswipe: January 23: Failed replacement

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"Replacing letters with a body isn't really working on this church banner," tweets @KateRobbins.
"Replacing letters with a body isn't really working on this church banner," tweets @KateRobbins.

House clean-out sobering reminder

What was the strangest thing you found cleaning out your parents' house after they died? "Liquor bottles," writes Cardinal Robbins on Quora.com. "Probably at least 300 of them if not more, hidden in the walls, because my mother had begun remodelling my father's house and he was a hardcore alcoholic. Most of the bottles' labels had deteriorated, but they were almost all identical in shape and size. Once he switched to drinking a fifth of Jim Beam (and a six-pack of Schlitz beer) per day, he found a different way to dispose of the bottles. It was an extremely disturbing sight to see all those bottles collected in big trash cans, hauled to the curb for disposal. It's a shame there was no recycling programme back then, because he certainly helped fill the local dump. I literally never saw him sober. He died at the age of 67, a victim of the 1968 Hong Kong flu epidemic. We were astounded he lived as long as he did."

Elaborate hoax fools prof

A collection of stones near a Bavarian town were discovered by some natural history students. There were almost 2000 stones, some carved with images of "lizards in their skin, birds with beaks and eyes, spiders with their webs, and frogs copulating", the Guardian reports. Others had astronomical objects and Hebrew letters etched into them. The chair of natural history at the University of Würzburg, Johann Beringer, speculated that the stones were fossilised relics from the Great Flood, rejecting the idea that they were manmade. In fact, he was so sure that he wrote an entire book about it.

But just as Beringer's book was published, the students brought Beringer one last stone. The stone was etched with Beringer's name. They had been planted by two of Beringer's colleagues. They became known as the "lying stones". (Source: ScienceAlert.com)

Laughing slippers.
Laughing slippers.

- NZ Herald

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