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Ripples #14

Compiled and Written by Lenny Giteck

Ripples artMystery: Did UFO Drain
Argentine Swimming Pool?

According to a report on the Web site UFOdigest.com, the 16,000-gallon swimming pool at the Hotel Maykel in Justiniano Posse, Argentina, was inexplicably drained completely dry in less than a day.

After being notified of the strange occurrence by the pool maintenance man, hotel owner Lilo Garcia was astonished to find that, not only was there no water in the pool itself, there wasn't any on the surrounding deck as well. Said Garcia: "I don't understand, because when we drain the pool to clean it, such an amount of water takes a day and a half to drain. We flood the patio and the water runs down the street all the way to the canal. But this time there was nothing! Not a single drop of water anywhere around."

The possibility of theft by earthlings is being discounted because it would have taken five water trucks to drain the pool, and no such vehicles were observed. Nor did it appear to be a case of cracked plaster, since the maintenance man conducted a thorough examination and found the shell to be completely intact. Indeed, the pool was subsequently refilled and held water perfectly well.

"So," asks UFOdigest.com, "who stole the water?" Or as Ripples would put it, was this a genuine Close Encounter of the Wet Kind? And if the extraterrestrials were so thirsty, why wouldn't they drain a Coke or 7UP factory instead? Or a Starbucks? Or a liquor store? Could it be that on their planet, chlorine is considered a tasty treat?

Ripples awaits further evidence that may offer answers to these and other questions.

Photo: To see an artist's rendering of what the possible H2O abduction may have looked like, click on http://tinyurl.com/5vtqmcj

Note: Some Web sites may open behind this page.

Alligator Attack Victim Sues
Golf Course Over Pond Design

When James Wiencek went to play a round of golf at the Ocean Creek Golf Club on Fripp Island, South Carolina, little did he know that he would end the day without one of his limbs. Wiencek was attacked by a 10-foot, 400-pound alligator that dragged him into the 11th hole pond and tore off his arm.

Now the hapless golfer is suing the owners of the course, claiming they were negligent "in designing, building and maintaining the 11th hole pond such that it had dark, brackish water, steep banks, and thick vegetation rendering it difficult or impossible for golf patrons to see or notice the presence of large and aggressive alligators."

According to the legal Web site onpointnews.com, it is doubtful that Wiencek's lawsuit will be successful. "A property owner cannot be held liable for an attack by a wild animal that has not been 'reduced to possession,' but exists in 'a state of nature,'" the Web site pointed out, adding that "Alligators are indigenous to South Carolina, and signs warning people about them are posted at lagoons on Fripp Island, which is a nature reserve."

Goldfish Stir Animal Rights
Controversy in China

Ripples recently ran an item about a men's synchronized swimming team in Sweden. As amazing as that story undoubtedly was to many of our readers, it pales in comparison to a report of synchronized-swimming goldfish in China.

Chinese magician Fu Yandong has astonished Chinese television viewers by making several goldfish swim in unison, synchronized style. However, the act has sparked outrage among animal rights activists in China, who speculate that the feat was accomplished either by feeding magnets to the fish or implanting the magnets in them.

The Web site TNTmagazine.com reported the following: "'Fu Yandong, based on the tradition of secrecy in the world of magic, refuses to reveal what lies under his trick. So the public remains unclear whether the fishes' safety is assured,' read an open letter from 53 Chinese non-governmental organizations."

Fu was quoted as countering on his blog: "My fish are living happily." It is unclear how he is able to ascertain the mental condition of the goldfish. Magic combined with telepathy, perhaps?

Video: To view the fishy magic act, click on http://tinyurl.com/5w5l7rn.

Public Pool in England to
Be Heated by Dead People

Ripples is always eager to learn of renewable alternative energy sources, but the latest being proposed in the U.K. - the bodies of deceased humans - does give one pause and raise many questions. For example, would this include members of the royal family?

The town council in Radditch, near the British city of Birmingham, has approved a plan to use waste heat from the crematorium of a local mortuary to heat a sports center being constructed right next door. The center, which is scheduled to be completed next year, is slated to have a swimming pool, which also will be heated by the human remains.

A story on the Web site NYTimes.com reported that "[town] Councilor Carole Gandy said the plan was consistent with the need for energy efficiency and had been widely backed by local residents once officials had explained the technology involved, which she described as common elsewhere in Europe."

Not everyone was so enthusiastic, however. Also from NYTimes.com: "Roger McKenzie, regional secretary for Unison, Britain's largest public sector union, condemned the plan as 'sick and an insult to local residents.'"

It is believed that the plan reflects the fact that many communities in the U.K. are severely strapped financially due to deep cuts in their budgets. The plan allegedly would save Radditch more than $23,000 per year.

The Web site Dvorak.org quoted Simon Thomas of the local Thomas Brothers Funeral Directors as saying, "I don't know how comfortable people would feel about the swimming pool being heated due to the death of a loved one. I think it's a bit strange and eerie."

Photos and Videos:
Critters Make Waves

In case the synchronized-swimming Chinese goldfish weren't enough for you, Ripples concludes with several items related to swimming animals:

  • To watch the video of an elk being rescued from a frozen pond in Bend, Ore., click on http://tinyurl.com/6feg9y7.
  • To see photos of Mikey the horse being rescued from a frozen pool on Long Island, click on http://tinyurl.com/62qunb2. Scroll down to view the slideshow.
  • To see photos of kids swimming with polar bears (behind an invisible sheet of Plexiglas) at a resort in Canada, click on http://tinyurl.com/6l5f6fw. Be sure to scroll down to see the second photo.
  • To watch a video of a squirrel that tried to turn an Edmond, Okla., woman's toilet bowl into a private swim spa, click on http://tinyurl.com/6yp4oy7. Worth viewing just to see the cop chasing the furry offender around the bathroom.

Until next time,
happy watershaping to you!

- Ripples is compiled and written by Lenny Giteck

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