Miscellaneous | Corax



41-year-old former basketball player Kobe Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter among the nine killed in helicopter crash in Calabasas northwest of Los Angeles, was considered one of basketball's greatest players of all time

French author Gabriel Matzneff spent decades writing and talking about his sexual relations with minors but only recently is he being investigated by police, book by Vanessa Springora who was seduced by Matzneff at 14 years of age sparks debate about how cultural elite protects predators

Building company Regard in Tokyo lets customers try out how it would be to live in one of their houses, provides the would be buyers with a wife and daughter to act out common situations such as preparing for a party, doing homework or relaxing on the balcony, good response with one man proclaiming that he now has a goal to have such a family

Two Vietnamese men fined USD 78 after video of them showering from a bucket and rinsing their hair while riding a motorcycle went viral – were fined for driving without driver's license, crash helmets, rear-view mirrors and civil insurance certificate

German police launches investigation after beer being sold under the name "German Reich Brew" labeled with the imperial eagle and the Iron Cross for EUR 18.88 per case in the eastern German town of Bad Bibra, neither the eagle nor the cross among the country's "anti-constitutional" banned symbols, the beer launched by former NPD politician Tommy Frenck is said to have sold out

Switzerland's national mint creates world's smallest gold coin at 2.96 mm in diameter and 0.063 grams, the 2020 official commemorative coin portrays Albert Einstein and has a nominal value of CHF 0.25, 999 coins have been made and will be sold for CHF 199 including special magnifying glass

Founding 'Monty Python' member and 'Life of Brian' director Terry Jones dies aged 77, diagnosed with dementia in 2015

Wombat physically removed from Tasmanian suburb after 12 months of entering houses through cat flaps to feast on cat food and make beds out of cushions, the animal who also tunneled under fences and dug out gardens is said to have lived in council pipes during days and visited the neighbourhood during nights

Coca-Cola has no intention to phase out plastic bottles, much to the chagrin and dismay of environmental activists, Coke head of sustainibility Bea Perez tells BBC reporter consumer wants must be premiered over activist furore, Coke projects they will recycle as many plastic bottles as they produce by 2030

New Hampshire father strangles coyote to death with his bare hands after it attacked his family during hike, the predator is also believed to have attacked another hiking family as well as a 62-year old woman with her dogs, rabies tests to be performed

Woman discovers 6-8 feet Boa Constrictor wrapped around sink in the bathroom of her home in Liverpool, Constable Chris Eastwood from the Matrix team gave the snake a drink of water before coaxing it to unravel itself

Hank Azaria says he will no longer voice the Simpsons character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, decision follows years of criticism accusing the character of reinforcing racial stereotypes with regard to his eight children, arranged marriage and job as a convenience store owner, unclear if Apu will get a new voice or be dropped from the cartoon

Rare 22-carat Edward VIII gold coin first British coin to sell for GBP 1 million, coin originally from a small trial set collection created when Edward took the throne in 1936 but never publicly released as he abdicated the same year to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson, coin also unique as Edward preferred to show his left profile and thus broke with the tradition of successive monarch's heads facing in opposite directions

J.R.R. Tolkien's son Christopher dead at 95, drew the Lord of the Rings maps and edited most of his father's posthumous works – also translated legendary sagas such as the Icelandic 13th century Hervarar saga ok Heiðreks which inspired his father to create Middle-earth

Two confirmed deaths and more maimed in wake of chemical plant explosion in Catalonia, gas-buildup sends one ton steel plate crashing into residential block two miles away, cause believed to be ignition of volatile precursor ethylene oxide

Paraplegic South Carolina man Adam Gorlitsky beats the world record for marathon in an exoskeleton suit by completing Charleston Marathon in 33 hours, 50 minutes and 23 seconds, completed the race without taking sleeping breaks and says he's gained a whole new level of respect for the former world record holder Simon Kindleysides who finished the 2018 London Marathon in 36 hours and 46 minutes

Conservative luminary Roger Scruton dies at 75, prolific scholar and thinker who produced works on everything from architecture to theology, was diagnosed with cancer summer of 2019

Montana's Glacier National Park replaces decade-old signs predicting glaciers to be gone by 2020 – park officials stated to have known the glaciers to be intact in 2020 by 2017 when the US Geological Survey forecast model changed, but strict maintenance budgets belated the sign changing

Paul Krugman claims in deleted tweet that his IP-address was compromised to download child pornography, believes it was either a fluke or a deliberate attempt to "QAnon" him, has since backpedalled to say it was probably just a 'scam'

Photographs surface showing Bill Clinton posing with Jeffrey Epstein's former associate Ghislaine Maxwell and sex-slave Chauntae Davies during five-day humanitarian trip to Africa, Kevin Spacey and Chris Tucker reported to have been on the same private jet, ostensible purpose of trip to promote awareness of AIDS and poverty

Toyota Motors CEO Toyoda Akio reveals plans to build hydrogen-powered eco city in central Japan, capacity for 2000 inhabitants comprising mainly Toyota employees, fossil fuels cars to be prohibited as citizens are nurtured cradle to grave by AI and robotics

276 kilogram bluefin tuna sold for USD 1.8 million in first Tokyo’s Toyosu fish market auction of 2020, second highest price on record paid by Sushizanmai restaurant owner Kiyoshi Kimura, who also holds the record after spending USD 3.1 million on a tuna last year

Neighbour mistakes talking 40-year-old parrot Rambo for a woman screaming for help and calls the police to couple's Florida home, owner taught his pet to yell "help, help, let me out" when he was a child

Mother of Britain's biggest family Sue Radford pregnant with her 22nd child, Sue and her husband Noel had their first child in 1989 when she was 14 years old, the couple also has five grandchildren

India approves third lunar mission planned for 2020 launch months after last one failed to successfully land on the moon, the Chandrayaan-3 mission said to cost less than the previous mission and a human space-flight mission is slated for late 2021

Monkey house at German Krefeld Zoo destroyed in fire killing all animals but two chimpanzees, the enclosure housed rare Bornean orangutans, chimpanzees and marmosets, among other animals

Julian Assange tells journalist friend Vaughan Smith "I'm slowly dying here" in slurred phone call from Belmarsh prison on Christmas Eve, comes weeks after 60 doctors warned he could die without urgent medical care in open letter addressed to Home Secretary Priti Patel

Pope Francis recoils in dismay when a pilgrim forcefully yanks him by the hand in St Peter's Square, had only just returned from a thanksgiving service dedicated to the previous year

Public First poll shows 74% of Britons want BBC license fee scrapped and 60% back plans to decriminalise non-payment, support for change higher among younger people than older ones, licence is stuck in place until 2027 but its level can be changed from 2022

Ari Behn dead at 47, was author and ex-husband of Norwegian princess Märtha Louise, claimed to have been sexually harassed by Kevin Spacey who day before Behn's death posted video where he talked about killing enemies with kindness

56-year-old convenience store clerk Mark Kasprowicz shoots dead armed intruder after being pistol-whipped during robbery by two masked men in San Francisco, Kasprowicz bled from the head but managed to fire one shot, one assailant died while the other got away

65-year-old David Wayne Oliver robs Colorado Springs bank before throwing stolen cash in the air shouting Merry Christmas, is arrested at nearby Starbucks coffee shop, police say thousands of dollars remained unaccounted for

Blind Bulgarian mystic Baba Vanga, who died in 1996 and supposedly foresaw 9/11, predicted Muslim terrorists will try to wipe out Europe with chemical attack in 2020 and Vladimir Putin will survive an assassination attempt

Santa shortage in Germany forces local Santa agencies to raise prices from 45 to 120 EUR per visit, despite increasing demand supply shrinks due to unwillingness to work on Christmas Eve

Ram Dass passes away at 88 years of age, leader of New Age movement went from psychedelic experiments with Tim Leary to enlightenment in India under Neem Karoli Baba and lived last part of life on Hawaii giving lectures on internet

Private cities to be supported by newly launched Pronomos Capital with financing from Peter Thiel among others, long-term goal to create venture-backed city-states says founder Patri Friedman who previously started Seasteading Institute

Japanese mother leaves life-size cardboard cut-out of herself in one-year-old son's room to stop him from crying, boy first caught on in 20 minutes but his father got another cut-out made

PewDiePie announces he will take a break from Youtube next year, saying he feels tired and wants to not have vlogging in his brain for first time in 10 years

Sir Rod Stewart becomes at 74 years and 11 months of age the oldest male solo artist to top a UK album chart with You're In My Heart, he declares "a new government and a new number one for Sir Rod" and "well done Boris"

UK businesses offers increasingly flexible hours, including possibility of hangover days to work from home after pub nights, manager says such benefits are key to attracting workers from millennial generation

Smith most common surname in every English-speaking country around the globe, study finds, with Murphy most common in Ireland, use of surnames in England started around 14th Century but became law when King Henry VIII ordered all new births be registered in the name of the father

Cat owners bad at reading cat facial expressions according to study with more than 6,000 participants in 85 countries, cat expert who got a perfect score on test says many would benefit from education in cat body language

Model railway destroyed by thugs in May on display in Birmingham after being restored with GBP 107,000 in donations including GBP 10,000 from enthusiast Rod Stewart, Market Deeping Model Railway Club had GBP 30,000 display trashed at Stamford, Lincolnshire, on May 18

Lottery winner happier working in coal mine for 10 GBP per hour than after winning 9.7 million GBP and partying the money away, says he had ten years of fun but prefers to have normal life back

Swiss doctor dies after being crushed by fully grown giraffe knocked into his campervan by minibus at Kruger National Park in South Africa, the 5.5-meter-tall and 750 kg heavy animal dies by double impact

Quilty the cat held in solitary confinement with increased security measures after repeatedly helping other cats escape from cages at Houston shelter, has previously liberated dogs, receivs support in online campaign #freequilty

15-year-old Gabriel McFarlane from Scotland builds laser gun over a period of six months using 3D printer and parts found on eBay, can burst balloons, light matches and melt metal, says he might work on building a Tesla coil or a robot as his next project

Literary critic and Yale professor Harold Bloom dies at 89, author of The Anxiety of Influence and The Western Canon, championed Western civilization and criticized political correctness and the School of Resentment including Marxism, Afrocentrism, and feminism

Actor Robert Forster dies at 78 of brain cancer, known for his roles in Jackie Brown (1997), Medium Cool (1969) and The Delta Force (1986)

Peter Handke and Olga Tokarczuk win the Nobel Prize for literature for 2019 and 2018, respectively, the choice of Handke is considered controversial due to his support of the Serbs in the Yugoslav wars and his earlier criticism of the Nobel Prize which he has said should be abolished

Dutch Design Museum Den Bosch exhibits design from the Third Reich, sells 10,000 tickets in ten days while antifascists protest, selfies and other photography prohibited to avoid misinterpretations

Pundit Luciano Passirani dropped by Italian football channel Top Calcio 24 after saying the only way to stop Inter forward Romelu Lukaku from scoring was by "throwing him 10 bananas to eat"

BangBros online porn site makes bid on naming rights for home of Miami Heat currently known as American Airlines Arena, bids USD 10 million for 10-year deal, wishes to call venue the BangBros Center, or BBC, which isn't alluding to British Broadcast Corporation

Cametrione Moore-Brown gives birth to baby girl Christina weighing 9lb 11oz at 9:11pm on 9/11 – commemorations held across US to mark 18 years since the 11 September 2001 attack which left nearly 3,000 people killed

Barcelona-based vegan activist Mythical Mia steals 16 rabbits from Osono farm, resulting in 90 abandoned bunnies being euthanized, initial boasts on Instagram leads to account being disabled

Former James Bond actor Pierce Brosnan wishes to see a women for the role of 007 and refers to the importance of #Meetoo, the current star Daniel Craig is also positive, producer Barbara Broccoli has previously defended Bond's manliness and opposed gender ideology

Government decide to follow Japanese tradition of family-name-first order when using Roman alphabet to write Japanese names, practice to write given name first in foreign language began in 19th to early 20th centuries, writing in Japanese family name is always written first

Cardinal Achille Silvestrini dies at 95, the long-time Vatican diplomat played an important role in negotiations between Italian authorities and the Holy See on the agreement revising the Lateran Treaty in 1984

David Koch dead at 79, the industrialist and world's 11th richest person was as a libertarian who donated millions of dollars to conservative candidates and into think tanks and efforts to stop political projects he viewed as examples of government expansion run amok

Owner of amusement park in German town of Löffingen shuts down ride that from a distance looks like two swirling swastikas, apologizes to anyone offended by the ride and says it won't be opened again until manufacturer makes modifications

New website Shameplane.com calculates how much Arctic sea ice melt a traveler's flight causes, spreading Swedish-born concept of "flygskam", or "flight shame"

Franz Kafka papers scattered across Europe finally brought together in Jerusalem as last batch arrives in Israel after 11-year search, includes hundreds of personal letters, drawings and journals, will now be published online, National Library of Israel says

McDonald's UK admits paper straws too thick to recycle, straws infuriates customers who say they dissolve in soft drinks and make milkshakes hard to drink, the replaced and dumped plastic straws company call "100 per cent recyclable" are fetching high prices on eBay

United Airlines flight from Glasgow to Newark cancelled when both pilots turn up drunk, arrested by police on suspicion of being under the influence of drink or drugs, incident comes three years after two other UA pilots were jailed for being drunk before flying same route

Canadian woman encounters a cougar while walking her dog in British Columbia, failing to scare off the cat by waving her arms and yelling, she plays Don't Tread On Me by Metallica on full volume and the puma bolts

Man donates his deceased mother's body to Alzheimer's research, her remains are secretly acquired by United States military for USD 6,000, strapped to a chair and blown up in an experiment

Wet Las Vegas spring spawns grasshopper hordes large enough to show up on weather radar, state entomologist says he's seen this type of swarms at least four times in 30-plus years, appears after a wet winter or spring

Thai Future Forward Party (FFP) accused of being a threat to constitutional monarchy and of links to Illuminati, former adviser to chief Ombudsman points out the upside-down triangle in FFP's logo resembles the sign of Illuminati, who was behind efforts to overthrow monarchies in Europe and played a role in US Declaration of Independence, FFP counters allegations in Facebook video

Palaeontologists unearth 6.5-foot thigh bone weighing half a tonne belonging to sauropod dinosaur around 140 million years ago, found in dinosaur fossil-rich dig site in Charente in south west France

Actor Rutger Hauer dies at 75 in the Netherlands after a short illness, played the murderous replicant Roy Batty in 1982's Blade Runner

Yokozuna Kakuryu wins his sixth Grand Basho after defeating Yokozuna Hakuho in deciding final match of Nagoya tournament, says back-pain almost made him withdraw, but support from family and the fans kept him going

Indian man fatally bitten by snake rips serpent apart with his teeth before being rushed to Lunawada hospital, where poison kills him hours later, while others ran away from reptile, he boastfully picked it up

Korean fashion designer builds device to help disabled goldfish swim, with swim bladder disorder, after many fish died due to swim bladder disorder, he used plastic components to create floatation device he calls a wheelchair, with help of YouTube videos and online tutorials

KLM apologises after trivia tweet reveals where in a plane you are most likely to die in case of a crash, followed by second tweet encouraging followers to guess where safest seats are to win a prize, branded insensitive for whimsically sharing stats

Continuous loop of children’s songs "Baby Shark" and "Raining Tacos" played throughout night to keep homeless from sleeping on patio of city-owned rental banquet facility in West Palm Beach, FL, homeless Illaya Champion says it’s wrong and that he’ll still sleep there

Police inspector at Japanese police academy mistakenly stabs rookie officer during drill, takes out a survival knife to bring a sense of tension, planned to stop just before it reached the victim's body, but one stab reaches part of victim's lungs, is admonished by superior and fined USD 4,600, the young officer quits shortly after the incident

Black British woman Lashana Lynch next 007 as James Bond retires from MI6, at the same time the phrase Bond girls has been replaced by Bond women, spymaster M is played by Ralph Fiennes

US Food and Drug Administration warns dog owners not feeding their pets food containing xylitol, the sugar substitute causes a rapid release of insulin, causing dogs' blood sugar levels to plummet to life-threatening levels, in humans xylitol does not stimulate release of insulin

Pilot sets new world record for the fastest journey around the globe via North and South poles, covering 24,966 miles in 46 hours and 40 minutes, English pilot Hamish Harding and NASA astronaut Col Terry Virts stopped three times for pit stops in Chile, Mauritius and Kazakhstan

Ross Perot dead at 89, became billionaire as founder of IT company EDS and ran for US president 1992 and 1996

Johnny Kitagawa dies at 87 due to subarachnoid bleeding, over 50-plus years his talent agency Johnny & Associates produced a number of artists including SMAP, Arashi, Four Leaves, Shonentai and Tokio, was recognized in Guinness Book of World Records for most No. 1 singles produced by an individual

North Macedonia Prime Minister Zoran Zaev tricked by Russian hoax phone pranksters, agrees to pay a bribe of EUR 100,000 to ensure Macedonian Orthodox Church independence and accuses Russia of having many spies in the Balkans – the pranksters pretended to be Ukraine's former president Petro Poroshenko and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Boris Johnson and Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko are among their previous victims

Robocup 2019, football world cup for autonomous robots, takes place in Sydney, organisers say by 2050 they want robots to be able to beat the best human team in the world

Chinese lunar satellite DSLWP-B takes unique photos of total eclipse of the Sun where Moon is seen casting shadow on Earth

Italian tiger trainer Ettore Weber killed by four tigers during circus performance rehearsal, country's parliament voted in 2017 to phase out animal circus acts

Latest jewelry collection from Chanel inspired by Tsardom of Russia and Coco Chanel's love affair with Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich who was a cousin of Tsar Nicholas II

Egyptian government seeks to stop auction of Tutankhamun bust, says statue was probably stolen from temple during 1970s, auction house Christie says bust's existence has been known for a long time and it has been publicly exhibited

900 year old chess pieces from Lewis Chessmen set sold at auction for 735,000 GBP, found in drawer at Scottish antique dealer whose relatives bought it for 5 GBP in 1964, walrus ivory rook is thought to be made in Norway

Arctic fox with tracking device walks more than 3,500km on sea ice from Svalbard to Canada in just 76 days, fastest movement rate recorded for species

Justin Raimondo dead in lung cancer at 67 years of age, was legendary activist for freedom and against war, authored several books and more than 3,000 articles on Antiwar.com which he co-founded in 1995

All macaques escape from Okinawa zoo, two monkeys recaptured, twelve still at large, zoo temporarily closed while search for adventurous monkeys continue

Slug causes power cut that disrupts rail traffic on Kyushu, Japan last month, its electrocuted remains found inside a load disconnector which it managed to squeeze itself into, over 12,000 people's journeys affected

Red squirrel gets its head caught in drain cover trying to leave sewer in Dortmund, firefighters takes manhole cover to veterinary clinic so animal can be freed, vets treat squirrel for neck wounds and release it back into the wild

Conservative historian and professor Norman Stone dies at 78, was a newspaper columnist and advisor to Margaret Thatcher, bemoaned the left-of-centre views of his colleagues at Oxford, was proficient in eight or nine languages, enjoyed playing poker and drinking

Alabama man allegedly fed methamphetamine to caged squirrel to ensure it stayed aggressive, it's illegal in Alabama to have a pet squirrel, authorities are seeking the man, released the animal

Leeuwarden butcher Johannes Hoekstra celebrates his shop's 25th anniversary by offering 1994 prices for mince and sausages and letting clients pay with pre-euro currency guilder, afterwards discovers Dutch central bank no longer accepts guilder notes from companies

Cat filter switched on as Pakistani politician Shaukat Yousafzai live-streams press conference on Facebook, filter superimposed pink ears and whiskers on his and two of his colleagues' faces

Italian film director Franco Zeffirelli dies at 96, best known for his 1968 adaptation of Romeo and Juliet as well as miniseries Jesus of Nazareth (1977), was also a senator (1994–2001) for Forza Italia party

KFC debuts vegan "chicken sandwich" from fake-meat brand Quorn as part of four-week testing period in the UK

French Professional Football League announces Uber Eats as new naming rights sponsor of Ligue 1, will pay EUR 32 million over two years from start of 2020/21 campaign, significant increase on previous deal, league to be known as Uber Eats Ligue 1