Leaked photographs taken by an undercover health and safety officer at China's Tongcheng Rice Noodle Factory in Dongguan city in June show workers in street clothes casually walking back and forth atop piles of vermicelli noodles about to be packaged for shipment to stores. Some workers were even seen lounging or sleeping on the mountains of noodles. (In 1992, News of the Weird noted that health officials in South Dennis, Mass., had closed the Wing Wah Chinese restaurant for various violations, including the restaurant's habit of draining water from cabbage by putting it in cloth laundry bags, placing the bags between pieces of plywood in the parking lot and driving over them with a van.)

'Silent disco' too loud for neighbors

Werner Purkhart, who has been running a "silent disco" in Salzburg, Austria, for four years, was denied renewal of his business permit in July, supposedly because his parties were too loud. At a silent disco, each dancer wears headphones to hear radio-transmitted music; to those without headphones, the roomful of swaying, swinging dancers is eerily quiet. Salzburg Mayor Heinz Schaden said it was still too loud. "The noise … is keeping [the neighbors] up."

No evolution 'turnaround' after all

Five siblings in a rural Turkish family near the Syrian border were discovered by researchers in 2005 to be natural, fluid quadruped walkers (hands and feet to the ground, rear ends up), which was thought at the time possibly to mark the first known "turnaround" in human evolution. However, the siblings were re-characterized by recent PLOS One journal research as merely accommodating a musculoskeletal imbalance in the brain. Other members of the family have normal gaits; the five quadrupeds show developmental issues.

The justice angle

In the midst of the city of Detroit's water crackdown — shutting off the spigots of residents delinquent on their bills — the Council of Canadians has come to the rescue. First, the council pressed the United Nations to label Detroit's program a "human rights" violation (the denial of clean drinking water to the 3,000 homes per week being shut down). Said the council chair, "I've [only] seen this [oppression] in the poorest countries in the world." Second, the council arranged a convoy of "good Canadian, public, clean water" into Detroit in July to modestly help the estimated 79,000 homes in peril.

Ajanaffy Njewadda and her husband recently sued New York City's transit authority (MTA) following her tumble down some stairs at a subway station (which caused a broken ankle, concussion and lingering trauma that has required psychiatric care). The MTA had placed a large ad for the serial-killer TV series "Dexter" on station stairs, positioned to be seen just as visitors left the subway. Njewadda said she was momentarily terrified by the ad and lost her balance.

A man whose name was withheld ("D.B.") in April sued medical clinics and physicians who performed his colonoscopy in Fairfax, Va., in 2013, based on what the patient learned from audio his smartphone recorded while he was unconscious. Although he originally intended to record only doctors' instructions, he was dismayed to know that they began "mocking" him the second he went under, making disparaging and untrue statements about his health and feigning disgust at his body — all done amid gales of laughter.

Donkeys rising

In an interview with Vice.com, the Swiss founder of Eurolactis touts donkey milk as the preferred substitute for cow milk — since donkeys have only one stomach, as humans have. (Cows, goats and sheep have multiple stomachs to break down their complex milk, but that milk gives humans digestion problems.) On the other hand, as Vice.com pointed out, milk drinkers, especially, must learn to ignore the A-word nickname for "donkey."

Read News of the Weird daily at www.weirduniverse.net. Send items to weirdnews@earthlink.net.