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BritNews RoundUp: 'Run Away!' Edition

It takes a lot to close a pub in England. It's like trying to close a church. Which is sort of fitting since the suspicious object that forced police to close a pub in East London yesterday turned out to be a Holy Hand Grenade, the fictitious armament from "Monty Python and the Holy Grail."

An Islington police spokeswoman told the Evening Standard: "There was no danger to the public. The device is believed to be an object known as a Holy Hand Grenade." I don't think it was the Holy Hand Grenade, just a souvenir version. You can find instructions online on how to make your own.

Animal Kingdom I: Essy is a duck who thinks she's a dog. The white duck lives in Bournemouth with owners Steph and Tony Tufft. She goes on walks--complete with a leash--with the Tuffts' two real dogs. She even sleeps with them. From the photo in the Telegraph, however, I think the minute those dogs get hungry, it's curtains for Essy.

Animal Kingdom II: Staff at the Blue Reef Aquarium in Newquay, Cornwall, wondered how some of their coral displays had been demolished. A fish was also injured under mysterious circumstances. It turned out that a four-foot long sea worm had somehow infiltrated the display and was wreaking havoc.

"It really does look like something out of a horror movie," aquarium curator Matt Slater told the Telegraph. "It's over four feet long with these bizarre-looking jaws. We also discovered that he is covered with thousands of bristles which are capable of inflicting a sting resulting in permanent numbness."

The giant worm has been named "Barry" and moved to its own tank.

Finally, a World War II-era government poster, designed to put the British public at ease in the event of a Nazi invasion, has turned into a trendy collectible perfect for these troubled times. The simple message on the poster, "Keep Calm and Carry On," is now available on T-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, duffel bags and cuff links.

Why has it become so popular? Dr Lesley Prince, who lectures in social psychology at Birmingham University, told the Guardian "It is a quiet, calm, authoritative, no-[nonsense] voice of reason."

Chat-a-Nooga Choo-Choo
My chat's at a special time today: 1 p.m. instead of noon. Join me as we keep calm and carry on.

By John Kelly  |  March 20, 2009; 11:00 AM ET
 
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