July 31, 2012

The Kingda Ka roller coaster     Photo: CstrzRock/Flickr

Boy on Coaster Collides With Pigeon

Was in the front car on the world's tallest coaster

A 12-year-old boy suffered minor injuries after colliding with a pigeon while riding the world's tallest roller coaster. Shane Matus was at the front of the car on the 128mph Kingda Ka coaster at Six Flags in Jackson Township, New Jersey, when a pigeon hit him in the face. "When I started spitting out feathers, I was like, that was a bird," Matus told the Daily Mail. The boy had turned his head in response to a car alarm and was fortunate that the impact was confined to the side of his face, missing his eyes and nose. While Six Flags staff is calling the incident an anomaly, it's not the first time a roller coaster rider has had an avian encounter in the U.S. In 1999, male model Fabio collided with a goose while riding a coaster in Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Via The Australian


    Photo: Kyle Taylor/Flickr

Olympics Inspire Impromptu Transatlantic Swim

Man only makes it 300 yards

An unnamed British man in the grips of Olympic fever was rescued after attempting to swim from Biarritz, France, to New York City. According to his friends, the 34-year-old told them that he wanted to “carry the Olympic spirit across the Atlantic.” Apparently inspired by Olympic swimming events, he jumped into the water and started going—to the disbelief of his vacation-mates. The man only made it about a quarter-mile before lifeguards floated out in a dinghy to rescue him. He put up a brief struggle, telling the lifeguards he was a strong swimmer and felt he could make the trip, before eventually relenting. It is 3,594 miles from Biarritz to New York.

Via NBC New York


Shark Breaches

Great White Shark Breaches     Photo: Cait/Flickr

Shark Attacks Bodysurfer on Cape Cod

Witnesses saw a fin before the incident

A bodysurfer on Cape Cod who was hospitalized for lacerations to both legs appears to have been attacked and bitten by a shark. Chris Myers was bodysurfing off Ballston Beach in Truro, Massachusetts, on Monday afternoon when something grabbed him below both knees, pulling him under. Witnesses reported seeing a large dorsal fin just before the attack. Emergency responders were able to transport him to the hospital, where he was to undergo surgery for savage wounds on both legs. “It was pretty deep. You could see muscle and bone,” Truro police officer Scott Holway said. “It was like his flesh had been ripped.” Experts say that heightened shark activity in the area this summer is due to an increase in the local seal population. A great white shark was seen tailing a kayaker earlier this month at Nauset Beach, about 25 miles south of Monday's attack.

Via ABC News


Wojdan Shahrkhani's Olympic bid is in jeopardy     Photo: West Point Public Affairs/Flickr

Saudi Judoka to Compete With Headscarf

Committee reverses apparel decision

Saudi Arabian judoka Wojdan Shaherkani is free to compete wearing a headscarf after the International Olympic Committee helped broker an agreement between Saudi Arabia and the International Judo Federation. Shaherkani was set to be one of Saudi Arabia’s first female competitors until the Judo federation ruled that she could not compete wearing a headscarf for safety reasons. With her father adamant that she wear the headscarf, it appeared that Shaherkani might be forced to withdraw from the Games. Details were not given regarding what exactly Shahrkhani will wear, but an I.O.C., spokesperson clarified that the agreement is in line with judo rules and is "safety compliant but allows for cultural sensitivity."



Swimming tightens the shoulder muscles via Shutterstock     Photo: Ersler Dmitry/Shutterstock

NBC Spoils Franklin's First Gold Medal

Promo aired before tape-delay broadcast

In a gaffe that's sure to bring fresh criticism to the beleaguered Olympics broadcaster, NBC aired a promo for Monday's Today Show that included the spoiler that Missy Franklin had won her first gold medal just minutes before the tape-delayed primetime race was due to air. The misstep underscores criticism of the network's decision to delay the broadcast of major Olympic events, including Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte squaring off in the 400 IM final. ESPN’s Chris McKendry tweeted, “Promo for Today Show just gave away the fact that Missy Franklin won her 1st gold. Now we return to taped programming for the call. Ugh.” NBC has also been criticized for delaying the broadcast of the Olympic opening ceremonies and then cutting from it a tribute to victims of terrorism.

Via Washington Post