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Amsterdam Battles Public Peeing With Plant Pot Urinals Growing Hemp



  • Of course they had to shoehorn weed into it. Those wacky Dutch.

Name two thing that first pop into your mind when you hear the name Amsterdam. If you thought of pot and the Red Light District, you’re like most people.

Well, you can now add public peeing to that list. With the coronavirus closing most bars and other public places, people have been left to relieve themselves all over Amsterdam.

Then, when the city opened to the public again, rowdy revelers on their way home after having a few drinks started peeing around even more.

It’s gotten so bad that the city officials had to do something about it. So, they invested nearly $60,000 in a very Amsterdam-y solution – plant pot urinals filled with pot.

Well, it’s really industrial hemp. But you’ll excuse the author for twisting the truth just a bit for wordplay.

A total of 12 GreenPee urinals – manufactured by a Dutch company of the same name – have been installed in the Red Light District and other tourist attractions.

GreenPee’s inventor Richard de Vries told the Independent that the urinal was born out of a concern for both the city and the environment.

“Peeing against a wall is going to damage historic buildings. It is dirty, unhygienic and attracts flies,” said de Vries.

“We came up with the idea of a planter to help keep the city green and provide something we can make fertilizer from.”

This was the only picture of a “green urinal” I could find.

From Harvesting Pee to Harvesting Peas

Indeed, the GreenPees provide a useful fertilizer that can be used in agriculture. And it’s produced through all-natural, pee-powered processes.

As the user relieves himself (or herself, adventurous ladies may use the urinals too) the pee runs into an internal tank, says the GreenPee company. This tank is filled with hemp fibers from the plants growing on it.

The hemp acts as an odor neutralizer, which keeps the GreenPee smelling nature fresh at all times. Once the tank is filled, the mixture of pee and hemp fibers is removed from the tank.

“After composting, the hemp-urine-mixture becomes an organic fertilizer rich in sulphates,” the company says.

Most importantly the fertilizer contains plenty of phosphate. It is an incredibly important mineral for agricultural plants, with farmers using it worldwide.

However, the largest phosphate mining areas in China and Morocco are gradually starting to run empty, says GreenPee. Therefore, the plant-based urinal answers an urgent need to relieve the world’s lack of phosphate.

“Several African farmers have already tested the potential benefits of urine-enriched fertilizers with very positive results,” says GreenPee.

“Their vegetable yield was twice as high as when using a regular fertilizer without urine.”

Great Ambitions

The GreenPee seems to be making a positive impact on more than African agriculture too. During an initial test run with four GreenPee urinals, public urination in Amsterdam’s Rembrandtplein square decreased by 49%, reports

“A study showed that GreenPees don’t create smell problems. The new GreenPees have also been further developed and improved in terms of sustainability, user privacy, recognition, and discoverability,” the City of Amsterdam said in a press release.

Saïd Arabi, who runs the Euro Super Clean company that helped install the urinals told that he was excited about the new green urinals.

“It’s a good solution to wild peeing. The city of Arnhem is also interested. It’s a plant pot and the urinal is only open in the evening when it’s dark. It’s perfect,” Arabi said.

De Vries probably welcomes the news the interest from other cities in his product. After all, he has big plans for it.

“My ambition is to place these in different cities and carry on innovating. We can make electricity with urine and it would be good if it could power a light. Maybe it could be a city announcement board for public health messages too,” he told

Stiff Competition

But if de Vries wants a bigger slice of the public urinal pie… Actually, let me rephrase. That’s disgusting.

If de Vries wants a bigger market share for his product, he’d better hurry up. Other companies are expanding elsewhere in the world, and there’s only so many urinals that can fit in one city.

Danish company Lapee is expanding rapidly in France. If their name didn’t tip you off, Lapee is competing with GreenPee with innovative public urinals.

In June, the city of Rennes in northwest France installed Lapee’s urinals aimed for women, wrote Dezeen. Talk about inclusivity.

“Lapee fits perfectly with the summertime and COVID-19 hygiene regulations,” said Lapee co-founder, architect Gina Périer.

French design studio Faltazi also installed its Uritrottoir composting urinals Chambéry earlier this summer. Like GreenPee, these urinals produce a mix of plant matter and pee that can be further processed.

They also caused a scene when they were installed in Paris in 2018. Locals called the public urinals “immodest” and claimed they “encouraged exhibitionism”.

“Our outdoor urinals respond perfectly to this problem of distancing,” said Faltazi’s co-founder Laurent Lebot.

Leave to the Europeans to take us a new, fresh-smelling age of environmentally friendly peeing.

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Man Rides Horse Down Highway in Chicago



  • But he does it for good reason, and we really can’t be mad about it.

Just yesterday I wrote about a woman who fell out of the car she was riding in, all because of a Snapchat video. And today? A man riding his horse down the Chicago freeway.

What is with people these days? Oh ya, it is 2020.

It was 4:30 p.m. when police responded to the southbound lanes of the Dan Ryan Highway.

Adam Hollingsworth, 33, now known as the “Dreadhead Cowboy,” is facing three charges after the incident. Hollingworth was charged with reckless conduct, disobeying a police officer and criminal trespassing.

He rode around for 30 minutes or so as traffic slowed to a halt. Illinois police and Chicago police were following close behind.

Hollingsworth and the people with him were asked several times by law enforcement to leave the expressway, and they did not. Finally after exiting at the 35th St exit, Hollingsworth was taken into custody.

Darron Luster, 55, attempted to gain control over the horse after Hollingsworth was arrested. Luster was charged with obstructing and resisting arrest.

Chicago’s Mayor Lightfoot dubbed Hollingsworth “The Census Cowboy,” in efforts to bring awareness around filing out the census. Hollingsworth’s ride Monday was with the goal to turn more attention to the recent slaying of so many children over the summer.

“The thing is to send a message that our children are dying,” activist Mark Carter said. “That there are no resources coming to our communities.”

The mayor and governor are calling for funding for mental health, education and social programs and development in neighborhoods they said have been neglected.

Chicago Animal Control was called to the scene in regards to the horse. They took the animal to their facility.

The horse, named “NuNu,” had multiple injuries when animal control arrived. NuNu was bleeding from the left hoof, its right hoof was injured and the right side of the horse’s body had saddle sores.

Police were notified of Hollingsworth’s plan on Sept. 9th. His plan was denied.

The mayor’s office issued the following statement Monday.

“While the Illinois State Police (ISP) is directly leading all police matters around this incident due to the jurisdiction, Mayor Lightfoot has been briefed by the Chicago Police Department, who are assisting ISP. What is clear is that this stunt not only seriously endangered the horse but also the rider and all travelers on the expressway. There is a right way and a wrong way to call attention to issues of great importance and this stunt was decidedly the very wrong way. Furthermore, the Chicago Animal Care and Control (CACC) was on-scene arranging for the treatment of the horse which was injured as a result of this stunt and are now working to transport the animal to a temporary shelter where it can receive proper care.” 





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One of You Should Buy the Lizzie Borden House



  • The 7-bedroom estate is back on the market for $890,000.
  • The current owners claim to have heard Lizzie Borden’s spirit, which means you can turn this into a profitable reality TV enterprise.

Just in time for the spoopy season, the Lizzie Borden house is back on the market. It’s not the house where the infamous murders took place, but Maplecroft. It’s where Borden lived in Fall River, following her acquittal for the ax-murder of her parents. It sold most recently in 2018 to Donald Woods and Leeann Wilber. They operate a Lizzie Borden themed bed-and-breakfast in the area. Until COVID, Wood and Wilber were renovating Maplecroft to become a similar venture, expanding their Borden empire. But the project got to be too expensive, and now they’re unloading the proper for $890,000.


I mean, I’ve seen worse properties go for more? Just look at the real estate market in Los Angeles. 

The Infamous Borden Murders

Photo by Benjamin Balázs on Unsplash

If you’re not familiar with Lizzie Borden, she stood trial for the ax-murder of her father and step-mother in 1892. The truth of what happened remains a mystery, even though the murders took place in the middle of the day with many members of the Borden household home. (Jk, Lizzie totally did it.) In part because of contradictory testimony by investigators and a second ax murder in the area, a jury acquitted Lizzie Borden. 


The live-in-maid at the Borden house, Bridget Sullivan, gave a deathbed confession to her sister. In it, she admitted changing her testimony to protect Lizzie. At the time of her death, Lizzie had amassed considerable wealth and several real estate holdings, but Maplecroft was her home. 

Definitely Not Haunted, Unless It Is

Photo by Benjamin Rascoe on Unsplash

There’s absolutely no reason to believe the ghost of Lizzie Borden is haunting Maplecroft. She was, by most accounts, not discontented when she died. It’s also very unusual for spirits to move properties–so Borden’s father and step-mother probably aren’t still seeking revenge at the estate. 


The current owners claimed to the Herald News they’ve picked up paranormal activity, registering as many as 50 voices in the home, including Lizzie Borden herself who was, “not particularly talkative.”


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Richard Nixon’s Unfinished Sandwich Celebrates Its 60th Anniversary



  • But unlike those McDonald’s burgers that never rot, this lunch has been kept in a freezer

We, the people, like to process history through anniversaries. For one reason or another, we tend to put special emphasis on how many years it’s been since something happened.

Not that there’s anything wrong with the practice. When it comes to big anniversaries, 2020 has some good ones.

For instance, this August marked the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. In January, the World Trade Organization celebrated its 25th birthday.

Meanwhile 2500 years ago – in 480 B.C. – King Leonidas of Sparta led 300 warriors against the might of the Persian Empire in the Battle of Thermopylae. What, did you think it was just a movie?

But in addition to history-shaping wars, 2020 also marks the anniversary of a slightly less significant event. More precisely, 60 years ago today – on September 22, 1960 – then-presidential candidate and later US President Richard Nixon didn’t finish his sandwich.

We know this because an Illinois man has preserved the half-eaten bison barbeque sandwich. It has sat in his freezer ever since Nixon walked away from his lunch decades ago.

The man in question is Steve Jenne, 74, of Sullivan, Illinois. This is his story – his, and Nixon’s partially consumed sandwich.

“I am not a crook. I am not going to finish that sandwich, either.” Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

A Trip Down the Memory Lane

But how come Jenne came to possess the lunch of Nixon, whose legacy would years later become forever tarnished in the Watergate scandal?

For answers, let’s accelerate to 88 mph and take a trip back in time. We find ourselves in the city of Sullivan on that more or less fateful date: 9/22/1960.

In case any Europeans are reading this, that’ll be 22/9/1960. Don’t get too confused, now.

On this date, Nixon was out on his presidential campaign. He was running against a Massachusetts senator, one John F. Kennedy.

As we know from history, a couple months later Kennedy would win the presidency. Nixon would have to wait until 1969 for his turn in the White House.

But on this September day, Nixon was in Sullivan on a campaign trip. For lunch, he was served the aforementioned bison barbeque sandwich.

Whether he wasn’t all that hungry or just straight-up didn’t like the sandwich has been lost to history. The facts are that he ate about half of it before proceeding to the park where he was supposed to debate Kennedy. However, Kennedy failed to show up, so Nixon took the chance to give a speech of his own.

While he was speaking, Steve Jenne – then a 14-year-old Boy Scout – kept an eye on the Senator’s unfinished lunch.

“Being the good Boy Scout that I was, I stood there and guarded that sandwich,” Jenne recounted to the University of Illinois.

Eventually, though, it became clear to Jenne that Nixon wasn’t coming back to clean his plate.

“I looked around and thought, ‘If no one else was going to take it, I am going to take it,’” Jenne told Herald & Review in a separate interview.

And so he did. The sandwich ended up in a glass jar in the Jennes’ freezer.

Onto the TV Screen

From Sullivan, the sandwich eventually relocated to Springfield when the Jennes moved house. When Steve Jenne eventually left his parents’ home to start a life of his own, the sandwich went with him.

In 1988, the aforementioned Herald & Review wrote a story of the sandwich, which at the time was of the ripe age of 28. The story went viral (or whatever the 1988 equivalent is), and Jenne ended up showcasing his artifact on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.

The famous comedian Steve Martin was also a guest on the show that night. Always ready to crack a joke, Martin signed a paper plate he had eaten a chicken salad sandwich off of and handed it to Jenne.

Probably to everyone’s surprise, Jenne happily accepted the plate. He still owns it.

A Memento for the Ages

Let’s zoom back to the present day. Nixon’s sandwich and Martin’s plate are today part of a collection that has expanded to include scrap food from musicians Tiny Tim and Henny Youngman.

Jenne said that he never wanted to become famous by preserving celebrities’ half-finished snacks. It’s just a fun quirk, and undoubtedly a great conversation opener.

He has enjoyed the opportunities Nixon’s unfinished lunch has opened for him, though. In addition to The Tonight Show, the sandwich has brought Jenne into contact with other famous people and even an appearance on the I’ve Got a Secret game show in the 2000s.

With the sandwich’s 60th anniversary, he hopes that it will draw attention to the Nixon visit plaque in Sullivan’s Wyman Park. Maybe the city could use some extra tourist income.

When it comes to the sandwich itself, Jenne has no plans on getting rid of it.

“As long as I am living, that sandwich will be stored in my freezer in a container that is labeled, ‘Save, don’t throw away,’ ” Jenne said.

And really, why would Jenne throw the thing away? It’s come in handy enough in these past 60 years, so who knows what tomorrow might bring.

Actually, it’s election season right now. Wonder what Trump’s or Biden’s lunch would be worth in a few decades…

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