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The skinny

The skinny: British bucs hornswaggle Portland pirates


British bucs Hornswoggle Portland pirates

Someone needs to tell the people at Gasparilla about the record that is being ping-ponged between Portland, Ore., and Brixham, England. Brixham just reclaimed the record for the biggest gathering of pirates this weekend when 1,722 people showed up at a festival decked out for fun and plunder. That broke Portland's record of 1,651, set in September . . . which had broken Brixham's record of 1,459, set last May. Look for an update in September, when Portland has another festival. And someone get a Guinness rep in Tampa next January.


When in France, it's okay to wear pants

Progressive lawmakers in France have decided that it is time to go ahead and move firmly into the . . . let's see . . . 21st century and repeal a law that makes it illegal for women to wear trousers. The law was enacted in 1799, and lawmakers assure that it is obsolete. For instance, in 1892, an exception was made for women holding the reins of a horse. Sensible. And in 1919, another was made for women on a bicycle. Then there was the law in 1946 that made men and women equal in France, which took care of virtually every other scenario. President Nicolas Sarkozy suggested Parliament repeal laws in the second half of the year. That one seemed a candidate.


She kicks husband, then files lawsuit

According to the details in her lawsuit, Melanie Shaker was walking with her husband on Sheffield Avenue in Chicago on May 1, 2008, when she attempted to kick him in front of a salon. While doing this, she lost her footing and fell through the window of the salon and suffered "severe injuries." According to the lawsuit, this is the salon's fault. Specifically, the suit says the store should have had safety glass, citing that the street is "frequently traveled by intoxicated pedestrians," reports the Chicago Sun-Times. Worth mentioning Wrigley Field is nearby.

More boating safety

Always get the right GPS for the job

Last week we learned of the less-than-expert British sailor who tried to navigate around the isle under the navigational principle that he just needed to keep land on his right, only to learn later he was sailing around the wrong island. Now comes word of another unnamed sailor — for fun, we're going to assume it could be the same guy — who attempted to take a boat down the Thames Estuary using an auto GPS. "Leaving port with no radio, no maps and no flares is bad enough, but using a (GPS) designed for cars is one of the most ridiculous things I have ever heard in my life," a coast guard official told the Telegraph. The man ran aground and had to be rescued.

Compiled from Times wire services and other sources by staff writer Jim Webster, who can be reached at

The skinny: British bucs hornswaggle Portland pirates 05/04/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 4, 2010 11:21pm]
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