Odds and Ends – Friday February 1, 2019 – February 7, 2019

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Idaho woman has 50-pound tumor removed

Boise, Idaho (AP) – An Idaho woman who thought she was gaining weight because of menopause discovered she actually had a 50-pound tumor that had been growing inside her for decades. Boise television station KTVB reports Brenda Cridland of Meridian chalked up her weight gain to aging, but when her health started to quickly decline about eight months ago she decided to see a doctor. That’s when a CAT scan revealed she had an enormous tumor that had displaced her organs and was cutting off the blood supply to her brain. Cridland said she underwent two-and-a-half hours of surgery to remove the mass, which luckily was benign. Cridland says she lost 65 pounds in the process, and learned the tumor was caused by undiagnosed endometriosis. She says she ignored red flags about her health, and hopes her story will remind other women that they shouldn’t avoid seeing a doctor.

Commuter’s ‘delay scarf’ bought by German train company

(Sara Weber via AP)
(Sara Weber via AP)

Berlin (AP) – Germany’s biggest rail company, under fire for its unpunctual service, is trying to mollify one disgruntled commuter by buying her “delay scarf.” Deutsche Bahn, which on Thursday announced plans to hire 22,000 more staff, bought the hand-made scarf in an online auction for 7,550 euros ($8,600). The money is being donated to a charity for the homeless. According to her daughter, Sara Weber, the Munich commuter had knitted the grey, pink and red scarf last year, with each color reflecting the amount of time her journey had been delayed. Weber’s social media post about the scarf drew widespread attention this month, reflecting Deutsche Bahn customers’ frustration at the company’s persistent delays. Less than three quarters of Deutsche Bahn’s long-distance trains arrived on time last year, debunking cultural assumptions about German punctuality.

Restaurant sign approved
after concerns it was offensive

Keene, N.H. (AP) – Officials in a New Hampshire city have approved a restaurant sign that initially was removed over concerns that it sounded like profanity. The name of the Vietnamese restaurant in a public building next to City Hall in Keene is a play on words. It calls itself by the name of a soup, which is spelled P-H-O, but is pronounced “fuh,” followed by the words “Keene Great.” It’s scheduled to open March 1. City Manager Elizabeth Dragon said in an email the sign was approved Friday and is in compliance. She said no one had submitted written permission to put up any sign until Jan. 4. Dragon said officials decided to let the community “decide what they think of the sign and how they interpret it.”

Pastor predicted score
in Patriots’ AFC championship win

Skowhegan, Maine (AP) – A Maine pastor who publicly predicted the final score of Sunday night’s AFC championship game isn’t claiming divine intervention. But he’s confident the New England Patriots will win the Super Bowl as well. The Rev. Mark Tanner asked his secretary Friday to post a message on the sign outside the Skowhegan Federated Church: “God doesn’t have a favorite team but the pastor does!! Patriots 37. Chiefs 31.” On Sunday, that was the exact outcome when the Patriots beat the Kansas City Chiefs to win another spot in the Super Bowl. Tanner told the Morning Sentinel Monday he is predicting a Patriots’ Super Bowl win Feb. 3, but he’s not revealing the score. Yet.

Silicon Valley landlord rents
$1,500 studio to 2 cats

San Jose, Calif. (AP) – Two cats are living large at a $1,500-a-month studio apartment their owner rents for them in Silicon Valley, where a housing shortage has sent rents skyrocketing. The Mercury News reports the 20-pound (9-kilogram) cats named Tina and Louise moved to the studio in San Jose after their owner moved away to college. The student’s father, Troy Good, was unable to keep them and asked friend David Callisch to rent him the kitchen-less studio so he could keep his daughter’s beloved cats. The newspaper reports Good and his cats got a decent deal because an average studio apartment in San Jose rents for $1,951 a month, according to RentCafe. Callisch says he feels bad wasting valuable living space on animals during a housing shortage, but he wanted to help a friend.