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The Odd Truth, Feb. 3, 2005

The Odd Truth is a collection of strange but factual news stories from around the world compiled by's Joey Arak.

Cheater Finally Comes Clean

GYPSUM, Colo. - A high school graduate has confessed to cheating on an English literature test — 47 years ago.

Eagle Valley High School Principal Mark Strakbein said he got a one-page, handwritten letter from a 65-year-old grandmother of five who admitted she and a friend stole the answers to a Shakespeare test in the fall of 1957.

"I know it makes no difference now, except maybe this will keep some student from cheating and help them to be honest — conscience never lets you forget — there is forgiveness with God, and I have that, but I felt I still needed to confess to the school."

Strakbein didn't release the woman's name but said he confirmed she graduated in 1958 from Eagle County High School, which has since been consolidated into Eagle Valley High.

Strakbein said he read the letter aloud to every homeroom class as a lesson in following your conscience.

"You could have heard a pin drop," he said.

His Sherry Amour

LAKE JACKSON, Texas - A Texas woman is accused of giving her husband a sherry enema that killed him.

Tammy Warner has been charged with negligent homicide in the death of Michael Warner last May.

The enema caused Warner's blood-alcohol level to rise to .47. One detective says with that much alcohol in your bloodstream, "you're either going to be in the hospital or the funeral home."

The detective says Warner was an alcoholic who could not swallow liquor because of ulcers and heartburn, and that he told people that he could not drink alcohol or he would die.

Don't Need No Stinkin' Badges

SAN ANTONIO - San Antonio strippers won't need any badges after all — at least, not for a while. A federal judge on Wednesday has blocked the city temporarily from enforcing a new ordinance requiring San Antonio strippers to wear permit badges at their pole positions.

U.S. District Judge Fred Biery put a 75-day stay on the stripper-permit law, pending a late-April trial of a legal challenge launched by Alamo City strip clubs.

The City Council approved the ordinance in December, requiring exotic dancers to apply for permits that they must wear badges in plain view while performing. Full nudity isn't allowed.

The rule is intended to allow background checks on dancers.

Fake Gator Invasion

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Alligator heads are popping up in the pond at the University of Alabama at Huntsville, but don't worry. Officials say it's just ducky.

The life-size, urethane-foam alligator heads were being put in the pond Wednesday to scare away ducks and geese so the growing bird population will not become a health hazard.

The "Gator Guard" from Bird-X Inc. costs $69 and has reflective orange-yellow eyes that resemble one of the birds' natural predators.

"Our fear is that we'll put them out and the ducks will figure out they're not a threat," said Marcia Green, director of the UAH office of environmental health and safety.

She said the two will sometimes be anchored in the lake to float and move around in the water.

Prom Date Auction Called Off

WILLMAR, Minn. - A teenager auctioning himself as a prom date has been booted off eBay, but he's still selling the shirt off his back.

Nathan Carlson offered himself for auction last Friday after a conversation with some friends at Ridgewater College. The bidding started at $30.

But as the bids came in and exceeded $260, Carlson added a comment that he'd contribute half the money to charity if the bidding went past $1,500 — a big no-no for the online auction site.

That comment violated eBay's policies on auctions to benefit charity, and the Web site ended the auction on Tuesday. Carlson reposted his auction Tuesday and added other auctions to sell the clothes he wore during some television interviews, at the request of some of the eBay bidders, he said.

"Maybe they just thought my dancing was great," he said.

But eBay canceled his prom date auction again. "They said the name was inappropriate or false," he said Wednesday.

Carlson had listed his prom date auction, his shirt and other items as "seen on the news."

Early Thursday, Carlson's prom date auction could not be found on eBay, but The Associated Press found Carlson was selling a silk shirt and a wristwatch.

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