Social media have given us the dubious opportunity to document all manner of celebratory, mournful, hilarious and contemplative events. And so they have opened the door to fame for "Paul Flart" (real name: Doug), a 31-year-old hospital security guard who took to Instagram in March to share with the world his "sphincter sirens." Flart spent a lot of time sitting around at the front desk with nothing to do, but he noticed, "The lobby has really great acoustics, and naturally, we all fart. One day I ripped a rather nice one and got really good sound from it, so the next time it happened I recorded it and sent it to my group chat." Those lucky friends encouraged him to go viral and helped him choose his Insta handle, Paul Flart. Today, he's racked up more than 20,000 followers, according to Vice. Unfortunately, hospital management isn't among them, and on Aug. 23, Flart was fired from his job. But he's not deflated; he plans to expand his reach: "We can do Paul Flart on vacation, you know, throw in like a Hawaiian shirt and a hat ... and then just fart around Florida."

Government in action

The public works department in San Francisco gets, on average, 65 calls every day with complaints about feces on the sidewalk. Public works director Mohammed Nuru and the city's mayor, London Breed, put their heads together and came up with a solution: the Poop Patrol. In mid-September, five public works employees with a steam cleaner will begin scouring poop "hot spots," such as the Civic Center, Tenderloin and South of Market neighborhoods, during the afternoons to clean up what nature has left behind. (Another team also cleans overnight.) Officials told the San Francisco Chronicle that the waste comes from dogs and people, and the mayor recently allotted about $1 million for new public restrooms. "I just want the city to be clean," Mayor Breed said, "and I want to make sure we're providing the resources so that it can be."


Mohamad Zayid Abdihdy, 24, declared that he's "going back to hookah" after a fiery incident on Aug. 25 involving his e-cigarette. The cellphone store worker was in an HDTV Outlet store in Anaheim, Calif., buying a television when the smoking device exploded in his pants pocket. "The gentleman, he is running ... and he is screaming and yelling," store manager Antelmolare Guzman told NBC4. "Apparently, all of his right leg was completely burnt all the way down. Part of his private parts were also kind of affected." While Abdihdy ran to the restroom to see to his burns, Guzman put out the still-flaming e-cig on the store's floor. Abdihdy, who did not go to the hospital, said he still can't walk on his leg.

The meth made me do it

Mason Tackett of Floyd County, Ky., told WYMT that neighbors called him on Aug. 26 to say his cousin, Phillip Hagans, was carrying items out of Tackett's house. When Tackett returned home, he said, "It looked like he was packing up for a yard sale when he come out." Hagans was "lying, throwing his hands, saying stuff like, 'I didn't do it. I didn't do it.' ... He did pull a gun on me," Tackett said. But what he really couldn't understand was Hagans' choice of items to steal: a cheese grater, an empty Lysol bottle and soap. "Who steals a cheese grater?" Tackett asked. "He stole my soap. Who steals soap? ... Must have been a bad batch [of methamphetamine] around here 'cause Floyd County has gone crazy in the last four days."

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