Volume 08 Issue # 37 { May 02 to May 08 2013 }
 
 

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Roundup
 
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Priest's standing ovation after coming out

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A Catholic priest got a standing ovation from his congregation after revealing he is gay. Metro reports that Father Martin Dolan, who has served in Dublin for 15 years, spoke out in support of gay marriage during mass and added: "I'm gay myself". Community youth worker Liz O'Connor said: "We are all very proud of Father Martin. Because he has admitted that he is gay he doesn't change the person that he was before it." A referendum on the issue is due in May, and a recent poll showed that nearly 70 per cent of people in Ireland are in support of gay marriage.
 
Man arrested wearing "I have drugs" t-shirt

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A US man wearing a T-shirt bearing the logo "I have drugs" has been arrested for possession of drugs. John Balmer was spotted wearing the top - which read: "Who needs drugs? No, seriously, I have drugs"—at a supermarket in Hudson, Florida. A Pasco County Sheriff's deputy allegedly saw him attempt to pass a plastic bag to another customer in the checkout queue. When that person didn't take the bag, police said Balmer walked to another register where he allegedly placed the bag on the ground. The 50-year-old was taken into custody after the deputies found crystal meth and marijuana in the bag.

 
Train passenger tweeted for toilet paper

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Virgin Trains came to the rescue of a passenger who tweeted for help - after running out of loo roll. Adam Greenwood took to social media to raise the alarms after he was caught short on a train from London to Glasgow. Luckily for him, the Virgin Trains social media curator was quickly on the case and offered to arrange fresh supplies. Mr. Greenwood, from Lancaster, said: "As soon as I saw the was no paper - I instantly thought, let's tweet about it and make people laugh. There were a few small laughs on Twitter but nothing more. Then I sort of realised - oh no - there actually is no paper. I honestly just presumed there would be some there, or at least a back up supply that falls down once you're running out!" He had to actually leave the toilet to check his carriage number before sitting down again to await his saviour's knock on the door. "I saw a guy looking quite worried in a full black suit carrying toilet roll, after the awkward exchange and smiles, I grabbed it off him and finished what I started," he added. "I know he's called MW but that's it - I will track him down and give him a big hug - and I sincerely hope he got some sort of reward at Virgin Trains HQ."
 
Man flies 5,000 miles to make Facebook friend

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A Belgian student travelled more than 5,000 miles to Austin, Texas, to meet a stranger after Facebook suggested they should be friends. Victor Van Rossem, was curious when Neal D. Retke, 49, popped up as a "suggested friend" as they had no obvious connection aside from one mutual acquaintance. After browsing through Mr. Retke's pictures, Mr. Van Rossem, 25, from Ghent, became intrigued by the artist's eclectic interests. He set off on his travels with his friend Bram, who took a video camera to document the adventure. The pair studied film together at university. They spent a week searching for Mr. Retke, scouring the city of Austin by putting posters up on every street and asking people in the street if they knew him. The pair even wore t-shirts carrying the slogan "Neal D. Retke for President!" in the hope they would help them find him. Through Facebook, they were able to spot places that he visited on a regular basis and set about visiting them. "We went to a couple of them and I think the fourth or the fifth was the bookstore where we eventually found someone who knew him. The whole search lasted about a week," said Mr. Van Rossem. The film makers spent a month in Texas. It took them a week to find Neal, and they spent the next three weeks getting to know him. "What I did was maybe a bit extreme, not the usual way of dealing with it, but in the end Facebook was right. I am really happy I met Neal, we had a connection, had a lot of fun and I consider him a friend now," he added.

Scores offer to adopt dog left at station

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More than 100 people have offered a new home to a dog left a railway station with a suitcase containing his belongings. The Scottish SPCA had calls from people as far away as California and Tennessee after the story of shar-pei crossbreed Kai being abandoned at Ayr station in South Ayrshire made the papers all over the world. The animal welfare charity hopes to rehome Kai once he has had surgery to his eyelids, which are curled under meaning his eyelashes touch his eyeballs. "He needs surgery which is quite a common procedure. He won't be able to leave till he has had that so he will be with us for the next three to four weeks," a spokeswoman for the charity, which is based in Glasgow, said. Kai, who is aged between two and three, was found tied to a railing outside the station with the case containing items including a pillow, toy, food and a bowl. Alan Grant, a senior animal care assistant at the Glasgow centre, said: "It would certainly have been very distressing for him at the time he was abandoned. He has been tied up to a fence and watched his owners walk away and leave him, and that's distressing for any dog, even if you just tie your dog up outside the shop and go into the shop, most dogs will panic so it must have been very, very distressing for him watching his owners walk away. He's settled into the centre not bad and he seems very people-orientated, but it's certainly not the right manner to leave any animal in." The charity said abandoning an animal is an offence under the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006, and anyone found guilty of doing so can expect to be banned from keeping animals for a fixed period or life. The dog was sold on the Gumtree website in 2013, and the charity is appealing for information to help trace whoever bought him.

 
Apology after "totally Muslim" Brum gaffe

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An American news commentator has apologised after claiming Birmingham was a no-go zone for non-Muslims. Steven Emerson claimed on Fox News "there are actual cities like Birmingham that are totally Muslim, where non-Muslims just simply don't go in". Social media pilloried Mr. Emerson, whose website claims he is an internationally recognised expert on terrorism and national security. He later apologised for his "terrible error" about "the beautiful city of Birmingham", and intends to make a donation to Birmingham Children's Hospital.

 
 

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