Andrew Shapiro is a 19-year-old college student from Great Falls, Virginia, and he believes he's set new world records for doing 10,020 pullups in less than 20 hours! Shapiro said, "I wanted to raise awareness for ocean conservation. I don't think there's enough light being shed on it, and the oceans are suffering." The event also was a fundraiser for the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. Documentation Shapiro has submitted to Guinness World Records includes the required video recordings from two angles under the supervision of two judges, restricted to shifts of four hours at a time. And no it wasn't easy. Shapiro said, "Around 9,000 [pullups], my body just started shutting down and my mind wanted to give up. But, I really wanted 10,000." Back in 2016, Andrew set records for the number of pullups in six-, 12- and 24-hour periods when he did 7,306 in 18 hours to raise cancer awareness after his dad, Allen Shapiro, was diagnosed with colon cancer. As for what happens next, Shapiro says he plans to rest awhile and go fishing. Then he'll begin preparing for the next challenge. (WTOP)
#Me Too! I Mean About Being a Captain!
TUI Airways might want to update their playbook a bit. Based in the UK, they're actually the world's largest charter airline, but they've got a PR nightmare on their hands for giving young passengers "sexist" stickers that "encourage gender stereotypes." Dame Gillian Morgan, 65, was flying to Bristol from Paphos, Cyprus, on August 15 when she saw attendants handing out stickers to the children on-board. All the little boys got stickers that read: "Future Pilot," but the little girls got stickers that read: "Future Cabin Crew." Dame Morgan, a trained doctor and scientist, said, "It happens implicitly all the time. The boys can have the Lego, the space rocket going to the moon, and the girls can have a little pony. We desperately need more women to do science, maths and engineering but little things like this take us backwards by providing restricting roles." An airline spokesperson said, "We're sorry to hear a small number of customers have been upset by this. We think it has just been a simple mix-up since our future pilot and cabin crew stickers are designed for use for any child regardless of gender." (Metro)
A federal air marshal was removed from a United Airlines subsidiary flight after a flight attendant saw the gun he was carrying and issued an emergency alert! The air marshal and another man, who also turned out to be an air marshall, were taken off the plane and handcuffed before being questioned by the FBI at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The TSA said the flight attendant mistook the air marshal for a passenger. The flight was operated by Republic Airlines, a regional partner of United Airlines and a Republic spokesperson said, "The safety and security of our customers and employees is our top priority. We are aware of this incident and are working with investigators." (Newser)
Oh New York!
Believe it or not, a police union wants to turn random bystanders into vigilantes-for-hire - by offering $500 to any civilian who helps cops wrestle down suspects who are resisting arrest. The cash proposal from the Sergeants Benevolent Association is aimed at getting those who normally would make videos of cops taking people into custody to put down their phones and actually get involved. SBA president Ed Mullins said, "When you see an officer struggling, rather than take your cellphone out, assist the officer and you'll receive an award of $500. Far too often, we see police officers engaged in violent struggles with perpetrators while members of the public stand by and take videos of the incident. This has got to stop, and hopefully this program will incentivize good Samaritans to do the right thing." State Sen. Martin Golden (R-Brooklyn), a retired police officer, will introduce a new Good Samaritan law to shield civilians from liability if they help police. Apparently a panel of experts will rule on whether any assistance merited a payout. However, a police spokesperson said, "The NYPD encourages people to support their cops by calling 911. The department doesn't want to see people put in harm's way unnecessarily to collect a reward." (New York Post)
You Killed John Lennon. You Stay in Jail!
It's the same old song for the man who murdered John Lennon. Mark David Chapman, now 63, got another strong, "NO," from the parole board on his 10th unsuccessful hearing. No reasons have yet been made public, but reportedly Yoko Ono sent the parole board a letter asking that Chapman remain in the Wende Correctional Facility in upstate New York-not only for the safety of her and her family, but for his own safety. Chapman, who shot Lennon in New York City in 1980, will have another shot for parole in about two years. Chapman's wife recently told the UK Mirror that he talked of killing Lennon two months before actually doing so. (Daily News)
Because the Aliens Told Me To!
Back in 2008, Werner Jaisli of Switzerland, started building a giant, star-shaped "ovniport" - a UFO landing spot - in an Argentinian desert, because he says aliens telepathically ordered him to. The deserts of Salta have become famous among UFO enthusiasts around the globe, after several sightings of unidentified flying objects and other unexplained phenomena were reported in the area over the last few decades. On the night of November 24, 2008, Jaisli himself was allegedly contacted by aliens who gave him specific instructions on how to build a UFO landing port. So he started building his now famous ovniport of Forte Alto, about 4 miles from the town of Cachi. It consists of a large star-like pattern, with 36 points and measuring 48 meters in diameter, which has a smaller star in its center. It is made of white stones that Jaisli and his assistant, Luis - who was also present the night that the aliens made contact - gathered from the nearby mountains. In 2011, Jaisli was jailed for stealing the wallets of a couple of Uruguayan tourists. He was easy to identify from the security camera footage, as he was the only one who sported an impressive beard and went around dressed like a druid. Meanwhile, the UFO landing port he built remains a popular tourist attraction for both UFO enthusiasts and tourists looking for unusual sights. No alien landings have been reported yet, but who knows, maybe one day they'll come. (Oddity Central)
What the What?
Believe it or not, Volkswagen has been accused of ruining crops planted near one of its factories in Mexico by using technology to alter the weather! Local groups have accused the German automaker of causing a dry spell with hail cannons that shoot sonic booms into the air to prevent the formation of hail. So why would they do this? Well to protect cars parked outside the factory from dents caused by hailstones of course! Following the complaints, Volkswagen has promised to reduce its use of the cannons at its Puebla factory. A company spokesperson said, "Even though there is no evidence that the use of these devices causes a lack of rain, Volkswagen (VLKAF) of Mexico decided to modify its operation in order to maintain a harmonious relationship with its neighbors." (CNN)