Sideswipe: Friday

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A no-right turn sign in front of a National billboard, snapped on Fanshawe St, Auckland, by Stephen Minhinnick.

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Glyn Walters writes: "One night in August I was surprised to be woken at 1.30am by a loud banging on the front door. It was a policeman. He asked, 'Sir, is this your letterbox? We have just apprehended someone walking down the road with it.' Thanking him for getting me up in the middle of the night and reassuring me the cops were on to our serious criminals, I went back to bed, thinking nothing more of it. This week I received a letter from the police, a cheque for $150 and an accompanying letter: 'Dear Mr Walters, I would like to offer you my sincerest apologies, I regret my actions against your property, I was drunk, and I thought it would be amusing to remove a letter box. That letter box happened to be yours. My actions were immature and destructive, there is no excuse. I promise to, in future, direct my energies along more constructive avenues, and if I meet anyone as foolish as myself I will be sure to inform them of that. Yours sincerely Dominic [last name removed].' I'd like to express my thanks to the police and Dominic for so eloquently 'fessing up - if only our serious crimes were so easily resolved!"

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A Croatian shopping centre has introduced special parking spaces for women drivers. But the move has not gone down well because female motorists resent the implication that they need the extra wide bays and the men resent the women getting special treatment. As well as the extra girth the parking spaces are decorated with pink flowers, better lit and are the prime spots. (Source:

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Among the losers in the housing crash was The Shire in Bend, Oregon, which was to be a village of 31 homes in the style of those in the Lord of the Rings film series, with "unique stonework, artificial thatched roofs, terraces, gardens, and a network of streams and ponds with a pathway to ... The Ring Bearer's Court". One of the only two houses completed has a "hobbit hole" for storing garden supplies. (Source: News of the Weird)

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- NZ Herald

Today's Webpick: Hurricane Gustav TV reporters get blown across the screen. Watch it here.

These are the very best online videos from Ana's online magazine Spare Room.

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