Monday 4/19/10

Human Interest News   —   Posted on April 19, 2010

By The Editors of

Borderline crazy
If the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency has its way, it will expand and modernize a border crossing between Canada and the United States used mainly by locals of Forest City, Maine-all five of them. With a price tag of $8 million provided by federal stimulus dollars, at least some are wondering whether the tiny village needs an updated border crossing. The measure would, among other things, expand the two-lane border crossing to four lanes-almost a lane per resident.

Breaking into jail
One Cleveland-area suspect made a strenuous effort to flee from the police-and in the process captured himself. Garfield Heights, Ohio, officers stopped 20-year-old Ricky Flowers for a traffic violation on March 29 and were about to cite him for driving with a suspended license when Flowers put his car in drive and attempted to flee the scene. The high-speed chase that ensued ended only when Flowers hopped out of the car, fled on foot, and scaled a fence to evade officers. The problem for Flowers: By jumping the fence, he had unwittingly escaped into the yard of a women’s prison.

Cure for the summertime blues
Some university experiments could rightly be described as boring yet important. On the other hand, there’s the University of Regensburg in Germany, which plans on experimenting to see if it can turn a number of its athletically inclined students into modern-day Roman gladiators. In a program funded with a $268,000 donation from a wealthy hobbyist, a group of 20 university students will spend the upcoming summer attempting to live an authentic first-century Roman life and train using real gladiator training methods. The participants will practice fighting skills while wearing bronze helmets and will live on a diet of beans and berries. Athletic archaeology student Martin Schreiner told The Local that he’s on board: “For me it’s a welcome change from sitting in front of the computer.”