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BritNews RoundUp: Laptop Voyeurs Edition

When I was in college I used to work at a photo lab. The younger among you will not know what a photo lab was. It was a place where you took your "film" to be "developed." Once it had been turned from flimsy negatives into shiny prints, you came to pick it up. That's right: Strangers saw your photos.

If there was something particularly good (if you know what I mean), we'd call our co-workers around and show off what we'd found. Sometimes extra copies were made.

Ah, those were the days. Now, of course, what you shoot on your digital camera is between you and your god. Well, between you, your god and your computer repairman. Sky News (Britain's Fox News equivalent) modified a laptop so that all it had was a loose memory chip and took it to six London repair shops. Only one fixed it correctly. The rest performed unnecessary repairs and charged outrageous prices.

Even worse, several repairmen sifted through the computers, looking for risque photos and copying passwords. Sky News had equipped the laptop with a camera, which took great photos of the snoops caught red-handed. The moral: Pray you never have to leave your computer with a stranger.

The Kaiser couldn't do it. Hitler couldn't do it. But now it looks like an unlikely invader is poised to overrun Britain. The Sky News headline says it all: "Diseased Chipmunks Could Invade UK."

Apparently the rodents are massed in France, just waiting for vapid British tourists, lulled into complacency by the critters' cuteness, to slip them into their suitcases and carry them home. There, the chipmunks will unleash a devastating biological attack, in the form of Lyme disease. Wrote Sky News:

The Siberian Chipmunks have been appearing more and more around tourist spots in the French capital following a summer of good weather. Nature experts fear tourists will pick up the animals and put them in their bags or car boots and bring them across the Channel to Britain.

England expects every man to do his duty: Bludgeon a chipmunk today.

From one disturbing animal story to another: The Sun reports that Mike, a horny sea lion at an animal park in Germany, "mated himself to death" after a marathon romp with his harem."Mating season is a common time for fatalities when bulls often stop eating for days to devote themselves fully to mating," said a spokesman for the Nuremberg animal park. "For sea lion bulls with a harem this is the most exhausting time."

A much happier ending to this love story: The BBC reports that, "A Devon man has married an old flame after a love letter he wrote 10 years ago which went astray was discovered behind a fireplace by workmen in Spain." Steve Smith met Spain's Carmen Ruiz-Perez 17 years ago when she was an exchange student. The two were engaged briefly then lost touch. He wrote to her at her mother's villa in Spain but the letter fell off the mantel and got stuck behind the fireplace. There it sat for 10 years.

When it was rediscovered it set in motion a chain of events that culminated in the pair's recent nuptials. Said the bride: "I never got married and now I've married the man I have always loved." Awwww.

From awww to ewwww: A Scottish male model claims that he can no longer work as a "naked butler"--entertaining bachelorette parties while dressed in only an apron and bow-tie--after Alexander Bogdanovic ran him over with his car, leaving a gash on his bottom. "I had a job in which I worked at the weekends doing butlering," John Wotherspoon, 24, told the court. "Now I have got a scar on my bottom I can't do it any more. Over that summer I couldn't do any modeling."

Surely he worked as a "buttler"?

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By John Kelly  |  July 24, 2009; 10:15 AM ET
Categories:  BritNews RoundUp  
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For the Erinaceus-ophiles out there, there's a recent book out, "The Hedgehog's Dilemma":

Hedgehogs are much cuter than chipmunks, but more difficult to smuggle in a pocket.

Posted by: jimward21 | July 27, 2009 7:53 AM | Report abuse

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