Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

The five weirdest things that happened around Tampa Bay this week

The week started with the Internet abuzz about a tragic fire in Tampa — tragic not because of injuries or deaths, but because of the potential loss of beer. The damage was thought to top $1 million when Tampa's Yuengling brewery caught fire, but fortunately no beer was harmed.

David Brownell, 48, was scheduled to stand trial on insurance fraud, accused of faking a respiratory illness and bilking the state of $2.7 million. That's "was" instead of "is," because he died this week at Florida Hospital — of lung failure. He's survived by his wife, who thinks she's got some pretty good evidence he wasn't making the whole thing up.

AMC's Freakshow program finds fertile ground this weekend in the bay area's community of sideshow performers. A free live show being taped for television will feature 10 acts, including the Rubber Girl (think contortionist) and sword swallowers, fire-eaters and the Electric Lady, the Human Blockhead (pretty sure this is the guy who drills into his own face) and the Indestructible Woman (could be ANYTHING). Want to watch? Swing by the American Carnival Museum, 6992 Riverview Drive in Riverview, at 6 p.m. Saturday.

If you're going to rob a bank, you're going to need some sort of mask, right? And where are you going to find one of those. Fortunately for the two guys who ripped off a HomeBanc branch in Kenneth City on Thursday, it was Halloween. One wore a devil mask; the other, wearing a ghost mask, carried a gun. No word on whether they trick-or-treated afterward.

Spelling matters, schools teach our kids. Poor spelling makes you seem uneducated and uncultured. It can make it harder for you to find a job. It can even delay the mailing of your report cards. Time needed to correct a misspelling of the word satifsac … er, satsifactosatisfactory pushed back distribution of grades to Hillsborough County elementary students from Friday to Monday. School district spokesman and former Times staffer Stephen Hegarty said anyone writing an article about the mishap "should have somebody proofread it, several times." Always good advice.

The five weirdest things that happened around Tampa Bay this week 11/01/13 [Last modified: Friday, November 1, 2013 3:38pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Navy expected to relieve admiral in charge of 7th Fleet in response to deadly disasters at sea


    The Navy will relieve the senior admiral in charge of the service's 7th Fleet based in Japan in response to four embarrassing accidents this year, two of which killed sailors at sea, two U.S. officials said.

    Tugboats assist the guided-missile destroyer John S. McCain on its way to Changi Naval Base in Singapore on Monday. [U.S. Navy]
  2. Trump chides media over Charlottesville


    President Donald Trump is blaming the media for the widespread condemnation of his response to a Charlottesville, Va., protest organized by white supremacists that led to the killing of a counter-protester.

    Trump met service members before the rally.
  3. Jones: Koetter-Winston exchange highlights latest 'Hard Knocks'


    There are certain things that make HBO's Hard Knocks must-see television.

    Jameis Winston, left, has an exchange with Dirk Koetter that highlights Hard Knocks.
  4. Rays are full of ideas they'd like to share when commissioner visits

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Commissioner Rob Manfred is coming to the Trop today. Hmm. Rays principal owner Stuart Sternberg will be there to greet him. Hmmmm. And they have a scheduled joint media session. Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Commissioner Rob Manfred isn’t expected to say anything definitive about the Rays’ stadium situation when he visits the team today.
  5. Mayor Rick Kriseman endorsed by another police union


    ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman is already backed by the city's largest police union, the Suncoast Police Benevolent Association.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman has secured another police union endorsement