Sideswipe

A daily look at life's oddities by Ana Samways

Sideswipe: June 20: Safe feet

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How a kayaker keeps his feet dry. Karl saw this on kayakfishingnz.com.
How a kayaker keeps his feet dry. Karl saw this on kayakfishingnz.com.

X factor solves school gender problem

Some schools in Vancouver are reported to be doing away with the old-fashioned pronouns "he" and "she" for their transgender pupils in favour of a new gender-neutral word, "xe" (pronounced "ze"). The new policy allows pupils to be referred to as "xe, xem and xyr" instead of "he or she", "him or her", and "his or hers". The decision was made to make school more inclusive. One comment suggested a possible alternative to xe: the term "one" used by the British, but it's seen as a bit cold and snooty. (Source: Vancouver Sun)

$1 pies healthy for the pocket

A reader writes: "With talk this week following the article about junk food being more expensive than eating healthily I'd like to point out that our local dairy, with foot traffic from a primary school and a large intermediate, does a roaring trade in $1 pies."

Parking ticket set in concrete

Dan Greding, working on contract with the city of Santa Barbara, California, was busy at work in February installing signs on street lamps - which warned that only "75 Minute Parking" was permitted. On one block, three signs were called for, but the last one required Greding to drill into concrete, insert screws and wait for the concrete to dry - which apparently took more than 75 minutes, and a passing police officer ticketed his truck. Greding's first appeal of the citation was denied, but a second appeal was pending. (Source: News of the Weird)

Sound reason for latex-free surgery

Bad patients: "A middle-aged patient told us as she was being wheeled into the operating theatre that she was allergic to latex. Everyone freaks out because so much stuff we use in theatre has latex in it. We take her to the latex-free theatre and do her surgery there. When in recovery and awake I ask her what kind of reaction she has to latex. 'I just don't like the sound of people putting on latex gloves, dear,' she replied."

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