Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher just thought they were having some harmless fun when they pranked the morning television show - "Hello Wisconsin" on WEAU. But to Gray Television, which owns the station - they duo are guilty of fraud, copyright infringement, and conspiracy to commit a wrongful act, and they're now suing the boys. Apparently Pickett and Prueher booked an appearance as "Chop & Steele," a phony strongman duo that court records show had convinced the station - via emails from a Mr. "Jerry Chubb" and a press release - to book them while they were in town on their "Give Thanks 4 Strengths" tour so they could educate viewers on how they've been "using their muscles to entertain and educate" on subjects such as bullying and unity. But their "educational" performance included karate-chopping twigs they'd found in the parking lot, lifting chocolate milk containers, and sparring with tennis rackets - things Gray calls "ridiculous bits" in its suit. Pickett and Prueher, who went to the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and now run the comedy event Found Footage Festival, found out about the suit via a New York Post story. Prueher said he's surprised Gray didn't get a chuckle out of it all, but he adds he and Pickett aren't backing down. "We're well within our rights doing what we did," adding the station should've done its "due diligence." And it seems WEAU wasn't the only duped station. The pair apparently convinced at least six other shows to book them; they showed up for a handful, then canceled the rest.(Pioneer Press)
How To Die Right
A suburban Chicago couple married for 69 years has died just 40 minutes apart while holding hands at a hospital. Teresa Vatkin, age 89, died Saturday at 12:10am at Highland Park Hospital. Her husband, 91-year-old Isaac Vatkin, died around 12:50am. Relatives say the husband and wife were holding hands when Teresa passed. Their daughter, Clara Gesklin, says her father stopped breathing when family members separated the couple's fingers. The couple's son, Leo Vatkin, says his father "never wanted to do anything apart" from his wife. During a joint funeral held Monday for the couple, Gesklin said her parents' "love for each other was so strong they simply could not live without each other." (Newser)
Guess What Amazon Wants You To Do Now?
Because apparently listening to everything you say through Echo isn't enough, now Amazon wants you to install a WiFi-connected camera in your bedroom, bathroom, or wherever you regularly get dressed. We are not kidding. The idea is so crazy that CNBC says they thought it was a joke when they first looked into it. So, it seems Amazon is billing the "Echo Look" as the "style assistant" to the original Echo's virtual assistant. It lets you take top-to-bottom photos and videos of yourself in various outfits, store them in a "personal lookbook," and send them to friends to get fashion advice. It will also rate how you look in various outfits using "machine learning algorithms with advice from fashion specialists." All this will set you back $200 bucks when it's released - but of course there are also some concerns. Some want to know who Amazon's "fashion specialists" are and how artificial intelligence can judge individual fashion tastes. Plus, Amazon admits all photos and videos of users will be stored indefinitely - unless the user specifically deletes them. It hasn't said if it will sell those images and videos to third parties. Amazon may also use your photos to recommend clothing based on your outfits. And let's don't forget the fact that you'd have a potentially hack-able Amazon camera in your bedroom or bathroom. Yeah - I don't think I'll get dressed in front of that. (CNBC)
Hike of Death
A young Taiwanese couple who disappeared while hiking in Nepal were finally found after 47 days - but it was three days too late for one of them. Liang Sheng-yueh, 21, is being treated in a Kathmandu hospital after being found on a ledge under a waterfall in the remote Dhading region. He told rescuers he had been trapped there for more than a month with 19-year-old girlfriend Liu Chen-chun, who died 44 days into their ordeal. Rescuers say the couple became lost during a snowstorm on the lightly traveled Ganesh Himal trail. They tried to find a village by following a river, but ended up on the ledge after falling over a high-altitude waterfall and finding they couldn't climb up or down. After they vanished, the couple's parents flew to Nepal, with Liang's father chartering a helicopter and hiring Sherpa guides to search the area. Local people eventually spotted the couple's red tent. Liang told rescuers they had survived on the food in their backpacks, mostly potatoes and noodles, for two weeks before supplies ran out. Liang lost more than 65 pounds and was suffering from severe malnutrition according to doctors. His foot was also covered with maggots and hair full of lice. But - despite having to live like that for 47 days, doctors say he appears to be "mostly normal." (Taiwan News)
Who Knew - There's Big Money in Socks!
Brennan Agranoff is the founder and CEO of a custom sock business that receives about 100 new orders per day - and he's just 17. He first came up with the idea for HoopSwagg at a high school basketball game at age 13 when he noticed how boring the athletic socks were that the players were wearing. So his company makes custom socks and other products, including shoelaces and arm sleeves, for basketball and other sports. Designs range from fairly standard (digital camo) to pretty out-there (unicorns farting rainbows). Agranoff says, "My ideas, they're either really random or based on what is happening right now." He's come up with over 500 designs so far and the company's annual sales are more than $1 million! Agranoff has a number of part-time employees, and his mom works for the business full-time. A pair of his socks will run you $14.99. Agranoff hopes to someday allow customers to come up with their own designs. And how's your business going? (Newser)
The Truth On Poop?
A new report reveals more than you probably ever thought you needed to know about poop. It turns out that no matter their size, all mammals take an average of 12 seconds to go Number 2! That means elephants take about as long to go as mice, despite the obvious huge difference in what they're producing. The new research also applies to humans, so there's literally no excuse for sitting on the toilet and playing Candy Crush for 15 minutes. Lead researcher Patricia Yang said, "If it's taking far longer than 12 seconds, I'd say you should go see someone about it." Published in the journal Soft Matter - yes, really - Yang's team studied in the field but also used YouTube videos in their research, allowing them to study 23 different species. Yang noted, "There's a surprising amount of poop videos online." The researchers believe one reason for the short poop time is to protect each animal from predators as the smell definitely attracts them. (Metro)
What the What?
In Cincinnati, the Hillside Chapel Crematory was badly damaged in a fire after they tried to cremate an '"overly obese" corpse. Owner Don Catchen said flames from the cremation spread outside a furnace when the fire got too hot in what he describes as a "freak accident." They believe because of the immense size of the body, the crematory got hotter than the unit is supposed to get. Fortunately nobody was injured. Firefighters put out the blaze - limiting the damage and the spread of the flames to one area, and no other bodies were affected. (WCPO-TV)