News of the Weird: Cheese lovers want FDA to leave mites alone

  • Article by: CHUCK SHEPHERD
  • June 14, 2013 - 12:58 PM

The Food and Drug Administration proposed recently to limit the quantity of tiny mites that could occupy imported cheese, even though the mites are a feature desired by aficionados. (“Cheese is absolutely alive!” proclaimed microbiologist Rachel Dutton, who runs the “cheese laboratory” at Harvard University.)

The FDA wants a limit to six bugs per square inch of cheese. However, according to a May report on National Public Radio, lovers of some cheeses, especially the French Mimolette, object, asserting both an indifference to the sight of mites creeping around and a fear of losing the taste because the mites burrow into the hunk, aerating it and extending the flavor.

Unintended consequence

Energy West, the natural gas supplier in Great Falls, Mont., tried recently to raise awareness of leaks by distributing scratch-and-sniff cards to residents, demonstrating gas’ rotten-egg smell. In May, workers cast aside several cartons of leftover cards, which were hauled off and disposed of by crushing — which released the scent and produced a massive blanket of odor over downtown Great Falls, resulting in a flurry of panicked calls to firefighters about gas leaks.

Thrifty find?

Ruben Pavon was identified by surveillance video in Derry, N.H., in April snatching a grill from the front porch of a thrift store. Pavon explained to police that the store’s name, “Finders Keepers,” indicated to him that the objects were free for the taking and admitted that he had previously taken items from the porch.

Latest in tattoos

Apparently running out of space on his body — which is two-thirds tattooed — Brazilian Rodrigo Fernando dos Santos has moved on to his eyeballs. According to the body-modification website, eyeball-tattooing is safe if done correctly, which involves the artist injecting the ink precisely between the conjunctiva and the sclera layers. The main risk, of course, is that the client can go blind. In April, Sao Paulo tattoo artist Rafael Leao Dias, who said he had studied eyeball work for two years, successfully turned dos Santos’ eyes into pools of dark ink. “I cried ink for two days,” he told a local blogger.

Picked the wrong house

Timothy Adams, 24, was charged with home invasion in May in Gardner, Mass., but only after resident Michael Salame slammed him into the floor. Salame is 70 years old, has had eight heart stents, and is forced to wear special coverings on his arms at night because of nerve damage — yet Adams apparently went down easily and at one point allegedly offered Salame “thousands of dollars” to let him up before police arrived.

Dogs gone wild

(1) Oscar, a Lawrence, Mass., K-9, accidentally fired a gun into an occupied home during a police chase in March. He had pawed the trigger while digging into snow where a fleeing suspect had tossed his gun. No one was injured. (2) In March, a dog left inside a unattended car with the engine running accidentally shifted it into gear and pinned an unidentified pedestrian, knocking him unconscious. The man was taken to a hospital in York, Pa., and revived.

Not so swift

Paul Gardener and Chad Leakey were arrested in Tempe, Ariz., in May and charged with a spree of car burglaries. According to police, the men were trying various cars’ doors, looking for any that were unlocked, when they inadvertently opened the back door of an unmarked police car. The men had apparently not noticed that two uniformed officers were sitting in the front seat.

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