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Weird National Briefs (03-23-2016)

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Bunny brawl

JERSEY CITY, N.J. - Video posted on social media shows a man dressed as the Easter bunny exchanging punches with shoppers at a New Jersey mall.

The video was posted on Twitter around 5:40 p.m. Sunday and shows a chaotic scene in a section that was set up to take photos with the Easter bunny at the Newport Mall in Jersey City.

The man in the bunny costume is seen brawling before being separated by security. The man then appears seconds later, throws off his white bunny gloves and exchanges punches with another man.

It's unclear if any arrests were made.

TME Thus redefining the notion of the rabbit punch.

Biker bird

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.- A parrot named Spyke is back with his owner after being stolen from a motorcycle a week earlier.

Television station WESH reports Mike Mularz's 22-year-old pet macaw was found at the Seminole County Parrot Rescue a week after a thief took off with the bird.

Mularz left Spkye on his bike while listening to a band across the street. Witnesses told him they tried chase the thief down the street, but couldn't catch him.

Mularz plastered the streets with flyers of the colorful bird. Last weekend they were reunited. Mularz describes the birds as if she was a family member.

TME We suspect fowl play.

Temple grand theft

LAFAYETTE, La.- A Buddhist monk accused of embezzling more than $200,000 from his Louisiana temple to feed a casino gambling habit has pleaded guilty to fraud.

U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley's office says 36-year-old Khang Nguyen Le will be sentenced June 27 after his guilty plea Thursday to one count of wire fraud. He faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Le served as presiding monk at the Vietnamese Buddhist Association of Southeast Louisiana Inc. in Lafayette from 2010 through October 2014. His indictment last year said he withdrew money from temple accounts and used it for gambling at casinos.

In a court filing, a federal agent said Le told investigators that he spent up to $10,000 playing blackjack during frequent trips to a Lake Charles casino.

TME Know when to hold em, know when to fold em, know when to achieve enlightenment, know when to run.

What's in a name?

LONDON- 'Too Naked for the Nazis,' the story of a music-hall act that outraged authorities in Hitler's Germany, has won an award for the year's oddest book title.

Organizers of the Diagram Prize said Friday that Alan Stafford's cultural-history tome gained almost a quarter of votes cast, narrowly beating 'Reading From Behind: A Cultural History Of The Anus.'

The prize, founded in 1978, is run by the British trade magazine The Bookseller and decided by online voting. Its rules say the books must be serious and their titles not merely a gimmick.

Other finalists this year included cult-film study 'Transvestite Vampire Biker Nuns From Outer Space' and photo book 'Soviet Bus Stops.'

Previous winners include 'Bombproof Your Horse,' 'Living With Crazy Buttocks' and 'Highlights in the History of Concrete.'

TME Apparently you can judge a book by its cover.

Crane technique

NEW ORLEANS- Louisiana's small flock of whooping cranes has already equaled last year's nest total with four, and could double that number. But if the eggs hatch, will the young adults be good parents?

The question arises because birds taught to migrate by following ultralight planes from Wisconsin to Florida have had little success raising chicks. Though there have been 161 nests, only 64 eggs have hatched, and only nine lived long enough to fly.

Like Louisiana's whooping cranes, they were raised by people. They learned to eat and drink by mimicking the pecking of model crane heads held up by humans in baggy white garments with hoods and black masks.

Do whoopers need to be raised by crane parents to become good parent cranes? What happens in Louisiana could answer that question.

TME According to the internet, this makes whooping cranes entitled millennials.

Reptile dysfunction

LAKELAND, Fla.- A Florida woman is fighting to keep her 6-foot-long pet alligator in her home.

The 125-pound reptile named Rambo wears clothes, rides on the back of a motorcycle and has a bedroom in Mary Thorn's home in Lakeland.

Thorn has had a license for the alligator for 11 years, but it recently grew to 6 feet. Wildlife officials say that size alligator must have 2.5 acres of land. Thorn tells the Orlando Sentinel that even if she had land available, Rambo can't be left outdoors because of sensitivity to sunlight.

Thorn takes Rambo to schools and charity events to teach people about reptiles. She says she has trained him not to bite.

Florida wildlife commission spokesman Gary Morse says Thorn's case is under investigation.

TME See you later, alligator.

Dog bites bear

SANTA FE, N.M.- A veterinarian helped save the life of an ailing New Mexico dog after discovering the source of the pup's pain - a 6-inch long, 2-inch wide stuffed polar bear.

Santa Fe Animal Humane officials told KRQE-TV in Albuquerque that the bear was discovered in the dog's stomach during surgery.

A veterinarian said the dog named 'Honey' had been sick for about a week and would have likely died within two days.

The dog is now expected to survive.

TME Happily the dog pulled through just bearly.

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