‘Zombie’ Raccoons Terrifying Residents

By WND. Youngstown police were busy this weekend fighting crime — and raccoons. Several scared homeowners called, saying the animals were in their yards, acting strangely. Police said it didn’t seem like rabies was the cause.

In the past couple of weeks, Youngstown police have responded to over a dozen of these raccoon calls — all of them with reports of the same strange, zombie-like behavior. The majority of the calls happened in the daytime, too, even though raccoons are nocturnal.

“I looked over there and got distracted because I saw a raccoon coming our way,” said Robert Coggeshall, whose playtime with his dogs was interrupted by a fiesty and sick raccoon last week . . .

Once inside, the wildlife photographer grabbed his camera to document what he called “extremely strange behavior.”

“He would stand up on his hind legs, which I’ve never seen a raccoon do before, and he would show his teeth and then he would fall over backward and go into almost a comatose condition,” Coggeshall said. (Read more from “‘Zombie’ Raccoons Terrifying Residents” HERE)

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‘Zombie’ Raccoons Are Terrifying Ohio Residents in Broad Daylight With Odd Behavior

By Fox News.
“Zombie-like” raccoons have made for a spooky sight in one Ohio city.

Authorities in Youngstown “have responded to over a dozen” calls in recent weeks about the mammals behaving oddly in the daytime, WKBN-TV reported Tuesday . . .

The animals were probably suffering from distemper, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) told WKBN.

The viral disease causes coughing, tremors and seizures and leads raccoons to lose their fear of humans.

“Raccoons can transmit rabies, canine distemper, and parvovirus to domestic animals and humans,” DNR warns online. “You should avoid any raccoon that is active during daylight hours, has lost its fear of humans, or appears uncoordinated, confused or listless.” (Read more from “‘Zombie’ Raccoons Are Terrifying Ohio Residents in Broad Daylight With Odd Behavior” HERE)

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American Adults Just Keep Getting Fatter

U.S. adults continue to put on the pounds. New data show that nearly 40 percent of them were obese in 2015 and 2016, a sharp increase from a decade earlier, federal health officials reported Friday.

The prevalence of severe obesity in U.S. adults is also rising, heightening their risks of developing heart disease, diabetes and various cancers. According to the latest data, published Friday in JAMA, 7.7 percent of U.S. adults were severely obese in the same period.

The data – gathered in a large-scale federal survey that is considered the gold standard for health data – measured trends in obesity from 2015 and 2016 back to 2007 and 2008, when 5.7 percent of U.S. adults were severely obese and 33.7 percent were obese. The survey counted people with a body mass index of 30 or more as obese, and those with a BMI of 40 or more as severely obese.

Public health experts said that they were alarmed by the continuing rise in obesity among adults and by the fact that efforts to educate people about the health risks of a poor diet do not seem to be working.

“Most people know that being overweight or obese is unhealthy, and if you eat too much that contributes to being overweight,” said Dr. James Krieger, clinical professor of medicine at the University of Washington and executive director of Healthy Food America, an advocacy group. “But just telling people there’s a problem doesn’t solve it.” (Read more from “American Adults Just Keep Getting Fatter” HERE)

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Starbucks Newest Gimmick Involves a Sugary Cold Beverage, Candy Sprinkles… and Your Future!

By The Daily Caller. Starbucks unveiled a new limited edition coffee drink, the Crystal Ball Frappuccino, which became available Thursday.

The fortune-telling Crystal Ball Frappuccino features a sugary cold beverage with candy sparkles available at U.S., Canada and Mexico chains until March 26, the New York Post reported. The Seattle-based chain hopes their drink will become a social media sensation, attracting new customers. The cream-based cooler is peach flavored and has three different colors of candy, which give you your fortune: blue for adventure, purple for magic, and green for luck, according to Starbucks frappucino’s official Facebook page.

“All signs point to yum,” the Starbucks Frappuccino’s official Facebook page said.

(Read more from “Starbucks Newest Gimmick Involves a Sugary Cold Beverage, Candy Sprinkles… and Your Future!” HERE)

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Gaze Deeply Into Starbucks New Crystal Ball Frappuccino

By Starbucks. What do the mystical sparkles mean? Your fortune shall be revealed (for a limited time) with Starbucks new Crystal Ball Frappuccino® blended beverage.

Gaze into the Crystal Ball Frappuccino and you’ll see a vision of whirling color. It starts with a crème-based Frappuccino infused with peach flavor and turquoise sparkles that create an enchanting marbling effect.

The magic happens when the peach-flavored whipped cream is sprinkled with one of three colored candy gems, each color signifying a different fortune in vivid blue, green and purple. Only the fates can decide which color is revealed – the customer will not know which color of candy gem will top the beverage. (Read more from “Gaze Deeply Into Starbucks New Crystal Ball Frappuccino” HERE)

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This Is How to Avoid the Flu While Flying

By AP. Worried about catching a cold or the flu on an airplane? Get a window seat, and don’t leave it until the flight is over.

That’s what some experts have been saying for years, and it’s perhaps the best advice coming out of a new attempt to determine the risks of catching germs on an airplane.

It turns out there’s been little research on the risks of catching a cold or flu during air travel. Some experts believed that sitting in a window seat would keep a passenger away from infectious people who may be on the aisle or moving around. (Read more from “This Is How to Avoid the Flu While Flying” HERE)

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How to Avoid the Flu While Flying

By ABC News. 1. Wipe down communal surfaces such as tray tables and armrests

Dr. Nicholas Testa said that you should be wary of the communal hard surfaces on airplanes, such as tray tables or armrests. . .

2. Turn on your air vent . . .

3. Let other passengers board first

It is not just aboard airplanes that travelers should be cautious of flu germs. Thousands of passengers also pass through major airports across the country every day, standing close together in tightly packed lines. (Read more from “How to Avoid the Flu While Flying” HERE)

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Lottery Winner Pleads Guilty to Bank Robbery

By CBS Local. A man who once won a $19 million lottery jackpot pleaded guilty Thursday to four federal counts of bank robbery, authorities said.

James Allen Hayes, 55, who was also known as James Killen and Ceaser Killen, was indicted last October in connection with bank heists in Newhall, Valencia and Santa Barbara counties. Authorities say he is believed to be the PT Cruiser Bandit and the Seasoned Bandit, so named by the FBI for his gray/white hair.

In each heist, the robber slipped a note to the teller demanding cash and threatening to shoot if they did not comply, according to the indictment.

As part of the plea deal, Hayes agreed to forfeit a light-colored Chrysler PT Cruiser, which was allegedly used in some of the robberies.

Hayes was indicted in October for a string of bank heists between April and September in the Pacific Palisades, Stevenson Ranch, Valencia, Newhall, Carpinteria, Goleta, and Santa Maria. (Read more from “Lottery Winner Pleads Guilty to Bank Robbery” HERE)

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Powerball Jackpot Ticket Worth $457M Sold in Pennsylvania

By CNN. One Powerball ticket sold in Pennsylvania has matched all six numbers.

The single winning ticket is worth $456.7 million — the eighth-largest pot in the game’s history, officials said in a statement.

The winning numbers for the jackpot Saturday were: 22-57-59-60-66, and Powerball 7.

“The ticket matched all five white balls and the Powerball to win the jackpot worth an estimated $456.7 million; $273.9 million cash value,” Powerball said. (Read more from “Powerball Jackpot Ticket Worth $457M Sold in Pennsylvania” HERE)

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Science Teacher Feeds Puppy to Turtle in Front of Children

A junior high school teacher is under investigation after what school officials are calling a ‘regrettable’ situation.

Robert Crosland has taught science at Preston Junior High School for years, EastIdahoNews.com reported. In a news release, Preston School District 201 Superintendent Marc Gee says his administration became aware of “a regrettable circumstance involving some of the biological specimens” on March 7.

According to a law enforcement official familiar with the investigation, Crosland fed a puppy to a snapping turtle after class. A school official, who declined to be named, confirmed students witnessed the incident after class, but did not confirm how many.

“The event occurred well after students had been dismissed and was not a part of any school-directed program,” Gee said in a news release. “We emphasize that at no time was the safety of students or staff compromised.”

It’s unclear if the dog was alive or dead when Crosland fed it to the turtle. Administrators began investigating the incident immediately, according to Gee, and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office was contacted. Crosland has not been cited or charged and has not been placed on leave, Gee said. (Read more from “Science Teacher Feeds Puppy to Turtle in Front of Children” HERE)

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Over Half of Millennials Have ‘Quarter-Life’ Crisis

Six in 10 millennials claim to be going through a “quarter-life” crisis, according to a new study.

Many of us are familiar with the trope of a mid-life crisis – a person in middle age who is feeling stuck in a rut, and who reacts by indulging in erratic behaviour like making spontaneous career decisions or buying a motorbike.

But now it seems more and more of us are evaluating our existence far earlier as a new study reveals more than half of millennials are experiencing a “quarter-life crisis”.

The study, carried out by First Direct bank and psychologist Dr Oliver Robinson, aimed to look at how people can use a crisis as a spark for change, but in the process discovered a huge number of 25 to 35-year-olds are struggling to cope amid financial, career and personal pressures.

Analysing 2,000 Brits, the study found that financial difficulties were the biggest single cause, with more than half (53 per cent) of people going through a quarter-life crisis admitting they spend more than they earn each month. (Read more from “Over Half of Millennials Have ‘Quarter-Life’ Crisis” HERE)

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Elon Musk Says Spaceships Will Be Ready for Mars Next Year

Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk told an audience at South by Southwest that his timeline for sending a space vehicle to Mars could mark its first milestone early next year.

The privately-funded venture, announced in September 2017, aims to send a cargo mission to the Red Planet by 2022. SpaceX’s ultimate objective is to plant the seeds to put a human colony on Mars.

Musk held a surprise question and answer session at the annual technology and culture festival in Austin, Texas on Sunday. The billionaire told attendees that “we are building the first Mars, or interplanetary ship, and I think well be able to short trips, flights by first half of next year.”

Mindful of elevating expectations too high, Musk hedged a bit. “Although sometimes, my timelines are a little, you know…” he said to laughter.

SpaceX’s BFR rocket system is expected to have capabilities for interplanetary travel, and be fully reusable. A flight will cost less than the initial Falcon 1 flights, which Musk pegged in the $5 to $6 million range. (Read more from “Elon Musk Says Spaceships Will Be Ready for Mars Next Year” HERE)

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Needles, Debris, Human Waste Tallied After Cleanup of California Homeless Camp

Gritty details from the cleanup of a homeless encampment in Southern California were revealed Thursday — and the numbers were stunning.

According to the figures, public works crews in Orange County collected 404 tons of debris, 13,950 needles, and 5,279 pounds of human waste during a massive overhaul between Jan. 22 and March 3, the Orange County Register reported.

The specter of the ever-increasing homeless encampment along the Santa Ana River Trail had drawn the ire of local residents, prompting city officials to take action.

Todd Spitzer, who sits on the Orange County Board of Supervisors and led an effort to address the growing encampment, says he felt compelled to take a different course than other major cities in California that have been experiencing growing homeless populations . . .

The encampment, located in the heart of Orange County, stretched from Interstate 5 in Orange to Ball Road in Anaheim along a bike trail, according to a spokesperson for Orange County Public Works. (Read more from “Needles, Debris, Human Waste Tallied After Cleanup of California Homeless Camp” HERE)

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Homeowner Holds Knife-Wielding Intruder at Gunpoint

When Robert Rodriguez and his wife awoke to an intruder in the bedroom of their Austin, Texas, home, he used his own firearm to ward off the suspect until law enforcement arrived.

Rodriguez told CBS Austin that 32-year-old Richard Brent Prieto kicked the door in, and he heard someone talking but thought it was his son. However, after his wife nudged him, he woke up and saw Prieto standing in their room with a knife in his hand.

Prieto reportedly was mumbling strange things and told him that his wife was under the house, that Chuck Norris was waiting for him, and that he was having a hard time. Rodriguez, who is a former sheriff’s deputy, slowly reached for his gun and, with the firearm pointed at Prieto, told him to drop the knife. . .

Rodriguez explained that legally — since the man was in his house — he had the right to protect his family, but he’s glad he didn’t have to pull the trigger. (Read more from “Homeowner Holds Knife-Wielding Intruder at Gunpoint” HERE)

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