An Alaska Airlines flight to Seattle was forced to return to Anchorage after a passenger locked himself in the bathroom, took off all his clothes, and refused to follow crew instructions. Passenger Kate Danyluk said she knew something was wrong because the flight attendants kept going back and forth in the aisles and had put on rubber gloves. While no emergency was declared, the decision was made to return to Anchorage," an Alaska Airlines spokesman said in an email. Airport police and FBI met the plane when it landed shortly before 3am. Police took the suspect out the back door though it's not known if he was arrested. Airport police Sgt. Darcy Perry said, "There was a subject on the aircraft that had barricaded or locked himself in the bathroom. Flight attendants did find that the subject was naked." (Newser)
What Else Could I Do... but Flush My Pet Hamster?
Belen Aldecosea flushed her dwarf hamster down the toilet because she said, "I didn't have any other options." Before you judge her too harshly, understand that the 21-year-old Florida woman says she was compelled to do so because of Spirit Airlines, which she says verified twice on the phone that she'd be able to bring her hamster, Pebbles on her Nov. 21 flight from Baltimore to Fort Lauderdale. But when she got to the airport, Spirit had changed its tune and wouldn't let the pet aboard. Aldecosea says she was stuck: Her nearest friends were hours away at Wilson College, a school she was leaving in order to have a painful but benign neck growth removed at home. The medical issue created a time crunch. She says a Spirit rep had a suggestion: flush Pebbles. And so Aldecosea says she spent 10 minutes crying in the stall where she did the deed. She's now considering suing Spirit over losing Pebbles, who she says was classified as an emotional support animal. Spirit denies the flushing recommendation occurred, though it did confirm Aldecosea was erroneously told the hamster would be permitted on board in a support animal capacity. (Miami Herald)
Ah Yes, the Old Minefield of Poop Problem
It's tax time, but New York billionaire Tom Golisano says he won't pay his $90,000 school tax bill until officials in the Finger Lakes town of South Bristol find a way to control the geese that have turned his lawn into a minefield of poop. He's tried stringing up fishing line, spraying smelly repellent, and even posting a wolf decoy, but nothing has worked so far. The 76-year-old founder of Paychex and ex-owner of the Buffalo Sabres says, "You can't walk barefoot, can't play Frisbee, can't have your grandchildren run around. ... Here I am paying all this money in taxes and I can't use my property because of the geese droppings." He's also pledging to file a class-action suit on behalf of other upstate homeowners, and he recently launched TaxMyPropertyFairly.com to give taxpayers the tools to challenge their tax bills. (Newser)
Trump and Kim Jong Un Kicked Out of Olympics??
You probably didn't see it but President Trump and Kim Jong Un were kicked out of the Winter Olympics opening ceremony Friday. Well, at least that's what it looked like. Two men dressed as Trump and Jong Un - and the costumes were uncanny - were quickly escorted out by security at the main stadium in Pyeongchang during the opening ceremonies. One of the impersonators later said, "We wanted to surprise everyone and bring world peace and then we're being escorted out by security guards, which I think is really unfair. Doesn't everyone want peace?" Reportedly the impersonators "caused a commotion" in the stands before promptly being escorted out by ushers. The pair were mobbed by a scrum of reporters, which the Los Angeles Times states proves "reporters in other countries chase stupid stories, too." Meanwhile, not-Kim says he and not-Trump are "getting along great" and says he thinks their real-life counterparts will feel the same way if they ever meet "because in my opinion, they're pretty much the same person." Not-Kim says his real name is Howard ("Just Howard; like Cher") and not-Trump is Dennis Alan. They both appear to be professional impersonators. (Los Angeles)
Grand Canyon Deaths
Tragedy at the Grand Canyon when a tour helicopter carrying seven people crashed, killing three people and injuring four others. Six passengers and a pilot were on board the Papillion Grand Canyon Helicopters chopper when it crashed around 5:20pm Saturday on the Hualapai Nation near Quartermaster Canyon. The company's website says it flies roughly 600,000 passengers a year on Grand Canyon and other tours. It also notes that it "abides by flight safety rules and regulations that substantially exceed the regulations required by the Federal Aviation Administration." Longtime helicopter crash lawyer Gary Robb said flying in the Grand Canyon can be treacherous simply because of the number of helicopters there. FAA spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the Eurocopter EC130 crashed in unknown circumstances and sustained heavy damage. Robb said his heart went out to the victims. (CNN)
Wanna Pay Your Taxes with Fake Money?
Ever fantasized about paying your taxes with fake money? You may soon be able to do just that in Arizona - which may just become the first state in the country to accept tax payments from Bitcoin, the volatile and controversial digital currency. Sen. Warren Petersen, R-Gilbert, is sponsoring Senate Bill 1091 which would allow income taxes to be paid in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency approved by the Arizona Department of Revenue starting in 2020. The revenue department would be required to convert such payments to U.S. currency at the prevailing rate, crediting the taxpayer's account with the converted dollar amount. Therefore, any swing in price that resulted in the state not getting the full payment would be the responsibility of the taxpayer. (AZCentral)
What the What?
In a bizarre case in the UK, Essex Police are on # poowatch and have been tweeting about it. Apparently a suspected drug dealer believed to have drugs hidden in his body and has now managed to go 21 days without pooping. The BBC reports the 24-year-old was arrested in mid-January, and has been under supervision since then, with the department's Operation Raptor team that arrested him providing updates like this one, tweeted Wednesday: "Day 21/3 weeks for our man on # poowatch still no movements/items to report, he will remain with us until Friday when we are back at court where we will be requesting a further 8 days should he not produce anything before that hearing." Just thought you'd like to know. (BBC)