Going Down: Ryan Klee stepped out of his third-floor apartment in a “secured” building in Issaquah, Wash., to walk his dogs, and when he returned to his home 10 minutes later, he found a burglar inside. Klee says he blocked the man from the front door and ordered him to give him his identification — so the man handed it over. But the man also grabbed a kitchen knife and threatened Klee. “I would feel horrible if I let him go and found out later that he hurt somebody else,” Klee said, so he told the intruder, “The only way you’re going to leave out of here is you could either be escorted by the police or you can go out the window.” The man leapt out the window, knife still in hand, as Klee took a photo. It was unclear if the fall injured the man, but thanks to the I.D. that Klee turned over to police, officers arrested Ryan Dresser for robbery, and noted he has a violent criminal history. “I definitely surprised my own self that I did that,” Klee said later, “and that I was able to think on the fly.” (RC/KIRO Seattle) …While “on the fly” was the first time during the incident that Dresser did any thinking.
Speak from the Heart: According to a spokesperson for Sweetwater Union High School District in San Diego, Calif, valedictorian Nataly Buhr didn’t follow her pre-approved speech at her San Ysidro High School graduation ceremony. After thanking her parents, friends, and a few select teachers, she went off script. “To my counselor, thanks for teaching me to fend for myself,” Buhr said. “You were always unavailable to my parents and I, despite appointments.” She also thanked her school’s staff for teaching her to be resourceful by not informing her of scholarships until the due date, and an unnamed teacher for helping students learn about the dangers of alcoholism — by being “regularly intoxicated during class,” which brought gasps and applause from the other graduates. “While we definitely welcome the concerns of students and their families regarding any situation at one of our schools,” the spokesperson said, “doing so in such a manner without any prior knowledge of this situation by the school, is not the right way of handling this.” (MS/San Diego Union-Tribune) …They taught her to fend for herself, so she did.
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Speak from the Google Search: Recent Parkersburg (W.Va.) High School graduate Abigail Smith called out the school’s principal: she says Kenny DeMoss’s graduation speech was plagiarized from a 2013 Teen Choice Awards speech by actor Ashton Kutcher. “I feel that it’s important to hold leaders of any kind, like school leaders, community leaders, accountable for actions that they hold us accountable for,” she said. “In school if I were to plagiarize, that’s something that I would get into a lot of trouble for.” Even though Smith posted a video of DeMoss’s speech online, and it’s clearly similar to Kutcher’s speech which is also online, DeMoss released a lengthy rambling statement denying plagiarism. But after the story hit the news, County Schools Superintendent William Hosaflook announced an investigation, which resulted in the school board suspending DeMoss for 5 days. (RC/WTAP Parkersburg) …What was worse in their minds: the plagiarism, or that he lifted from Ashton Kutcher?
Hurt-Mor: Miguel Sanders says things were going fine at his roller rink, Mig’s Pla-Mor. There were 250 young people inside for an end-of-term party — the venue’s capacity is 440 — and hundreds more were lined up outside. But then Euclid, Ohio, cops and firefighters arrived. “Euclid police, along with the fire department, basically stormed into the building like a SWAT unit,” Sanders says. A cop told waiting kids that only 100 more would be allowed to enter, whereupon they tried to shove their way to the front. The police subdued that with pepper spray. Authorities initially delayed responding to a reporter’s inquiry, then filed papers trying to get Mig’s Pla-Mor shut down as a nuisance. They also claimed that they’d shut the event when it reached the venue’s capacity, and that the pepper spray was an appropriate response to a “dangerous” situation in which people the police had stopped from partying were allegedly fighting. (AC/WKYC Cleveland) …What danger was there before the police showed up?
Old and Busted: cats stuck in trees; New and Exciting: cat stuck in a highway bridge. Florida boy threatens to “shoot up” his high school, but it takes months for police to arrest him. Man makes three trips in a row to Walmart …to steal everything he needed for a project. Canadian schools admit they are buying staff padded clothing to protect school employees from violent children. Cop chases down a semi truck when he notices its license plate is fake (and then it gets weird). Man crashes into 14 different cars on his way to work. State troopers conspire to collect overtime they didn’t work (and then it gets weird). You miss more than half of the stories every week. What a bummer, considering upgrades start at just $9! See your options here.
Anti-cultural Appropriation: The Dunedin, New Zealand, District Court accepted a guilty plea on a charge of offensive behavior from Whaiti Albert, 50, after he performed “a pants-down haka” in the middle of a city street. It wasn’t so much that Albert, who is not Māori, did the Māori warrior dance/chant, or that he was blocking traffic, but rather that he did it “whilst his genitalia swung freely,” according to the resulting police report. The court was lenient, sentencing Albert to a year of counseling after his lawyer explained that despite his client’s 30-year criminal history, he was trying to “turn over a new leaf.” (RC/Otago Daily Times) …Hopefully, a fig leaf.
And the Cops Snorted
Pasco Man with Cocaine Powder on His Nose Told Deputies it Didn’t Belong to Him
WTVT Tampa (Fla.) headline
This Week’s Uncommon Sense Podcast: To Boldly Go. No, it isn’t about Star Trek, but rather something even better: real life. It’s the story of a 9-year-old with Uncommon Sense who was inspired to reach for the stars — and years later inspired a bunch of other kids growing up behind him. It’s 11–1/2 minutes, and you can stream it (or read the transcript) on the Show Page.
A Reminder that my wife and I are speaking at the Mensa Annual Gathering (aka national convention). I speak at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, July 5: How I Learned to Think — by Observing the Biggest Obliviots Around, and Kit speaks at 9:00 a.m. on Sunday, July 7: Why Would Anyone Walk the Camino de Santiago, Anyway?! Many readers are Mensans, so I’m hoping for a great turnout.
Speaking of the Camino, and following on to the ScIreland trip we took this Spring, which was the inaugural trip for my wife’s Transformation Travelseries, Kit has set the next trip in the series: the Porto Camino, which is a different route into Santiago, also a pilgrimage walk, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site*, through Portugal to Santiago, Spain. It starts on October 15th in Porto, where you’ll do some sight-seeing, then walk about 240km (149 miles) over 12 days.
The Porto route doesn’t have the mountains of the 500-mile French Way(which Kit walked in 35 days last year), and obviously a much shorter, less time-consuming route. Because the trip is as much about personal transformation as the incredible scenery you’ll see on the slowest of the “slow travel” approaches, there’s a limit of five guests allowed (that is, in addition to Kit). So please do read the trip page carefully, and get to it sooner rather than later if you want to be included.
* The World Heritage Sites are landmarks or areas “selected by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as having cultural, historical, scientific or other form of significance, and is legally protected by international treaties. The sites are judged important to the collective interests of humanity.” (Wikipedia)
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