Friday, January 4

Strangers In The Night -

. . . shoobee shoobee doo . . .

Some of the people you see on the streets here in South Florida may be your neighbors, but some may be just passing through. Some may be roofless, while others may be enslaved. Appearances can be misleading.

An elderly man was catching a bite to eat one evening at a Wendy's branch in Fort Lauderdale when he met a young couple there. They all got to chatting during which it emerged that the couple needed a place to stay.

The elderly gent impulsively offered to put them up in his apartment, whereupon the trio was observed leaving the restaurant together. The seventy-year-old man was never seen in public again. That was on Oct 15th.

At the beginning of November, police were called to his apartment complex because a foul odor was detected there. It was only then that the body was discovered. Arrest warrants were issued.

The hold-back and big reveal turned out to be that no gun or knife was used to commit this homicide; instead, a plastic bag was allegedly used by the young couple to suffocate their host.

*  *  *  *  *
A young woman enrolled in a drug rehab program disappeared. The ensuing investigation into her fate yielded the information that she had found a dubious benefactor. It was only then that the entire sinister pattern began to emerge.

She had become ensnared in a sex slavery racket. Sadly, this is not a unique case. A higher than average percentage of transients in the area permits this kind of traffic to blend in with more conventional guests. And don't be misled by the dreadlocks - this is a multi-ethnic problem.

*  *  *  *  *
American medical schools customarily locate many of their training facilities in urban areas because the population density there affords more of a concentration of opportunities for physicians to acquire experiences which will develop their skills.

Thus, a young Canadian physician who wanted to specialize in trauma surgery moved from her relatively sedate environment in Toronto to South Florida.

She writes a muddled-minded Op Ed piece in The Miami Herald in which she laments that she has encountered a level of Cruelty here among her patients, who are often the victims, which she was unprepared to deal with.

Maybe she picked the wrong specialty.
How about switching to Dermatology?

If we reduce the numbers of guns on the streets, the psychopaths will probably use knives instead. Or maybe even plastic bags.


Thursday, January 3

Novelist Gets Slammed -

The Saudi novelist Turki al-Hamad has been arrested by KSA authorities for emitting provocative tweets.

It appears (albeit at long distance) that Prince Nayef, who has been serving as Interior Minister lately, may have been pressured by prickly religious elements to go after Perceived Insults to Islam.

Well, you know how it is with Perceived Insults:

The color Aqua can be perceived as Blueish Green or Greenish Blue. But then you have to choose how you will interpret it.

You have to choose to be insulted. Then, on second thought or review, you can make a different choice that maybe you were not insulted.

For what purpose do you choose to be insulted?

"His novels have dealt with political and social matters long considered taboo in the religiously conservative kingdom."

What happened to the approach of convening a panel of scholars to discuss these issues with those who deviate from the Kingdom's official interpretations? Where is the shura on this matter? Looks like a lot of intermediate process is missing here.

Was this arrest the result of one individual's personal grudge or vendetta?

Saudi intellectuals have accumulated at least 500 signatures on a petition for Al Hamad's release, according to the latest AFP report.

:: GlobalVoices :: - - - :: Volokh ::


Wednesday, January 2

The Case of The Naked Roofer -

It's raining men!
Hallelujah! It's raining men!

Daytona Beach Police Chief Mike Chitwood is seeking TIPS concerning the beating death of Dylan Thomas Tharp, whose nude body was found on top of the Peabody Auditorium on November 3rd.

Chitwood is convinced that somebody out there knows something, so a $5,000 reward is being offered for any information leading to the arrest of Tharp's killer.

Anyone with information on this case is asked to call detective Dale Detter at #386-671-5218.

:: It's Raining Men ::


Tuesday, January 1

SoFlo Paper To Be Orphaned?

Sun Sentinel parent company, Chicago-based Tribune, is undergoing a makeover as a TV organization poised to sell off its newspapers, according to Reuters.

It's anyone's guess whether a prospective buyer would be interested in buying the Broward-oriented print publication set in the context of a literacy rate reputed to be comparable to that of backwoods rural Mississippi.

 If Tribune cannot find a buyer for its Broward outlet, will the orphan newspaper have any future at all?

:: Reuters ::


Monday, December 31

End of Year Browse -

If you've sensibly decided to stay off the roads tonight and safely away from erratic drivers, you can curl up somewhere cosy and enjoy a bit of literary lagniappe . . .

# Rachel Arons has compiled some of the
most notable Literary Feuds of the past year.

# The Spectator's Best Book Picks of 2012:
:: Part One :: and :: Part Two ::

# Emily Temple gives us a peek at some
books scheduled to make their debuts in 2013.

# Murder at Locker 02-069 - one of
America's first school shooters - written by
Susan Taylor Martin - via Gangrey Blog.


FL Top of the Pop 2012 -

Florida's top news story of this past
year according to the vox pop around
here was the Causeway Cannibal Attack . . .

A Haitian man, who had been circulating in an outdoor social gathering where someone could have slipped a strange mickey into his drink, attacked a homeless man who was sleeping on the MacArthur Causeway and then gnawed off most of his victim's facial features. Even Carl Kolchak couldn't have made it up!

In sharp contrast, newspaper members of the Associated Press chose the Sanford Shooting of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman as Florida's top news story.

That story may have been distinctive because it had the worst quality reportage of any American news story over the year.