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Man is Reunited with Lost Ice Skate After Seven Long Years

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  • As far as stories about a man and sportswear go, this is a touching one

It’s a tale older than time. A guy loses someone he loves, keeps searching for them for many years, and just as he’s about to give up, the fates bring him back together with his lost love. A classic feel-good story.

Only in this case, the lost love is an ice skate. We couldn’t make this up.

It all began “about seven years ago”, which would put us roughly in the year 2013. A 47-year-old man named Jeff Meldrum from Chelsea, Quebec, was ice skating with his son Owen.

Suddenly, Owen fell and injured his chin. Like the good father he is, Meldrum rushed his son to see a doctor at the Wakefield Memorial Hospital, tells CBC. Owen ended up needing some stitches but was otherwise fine.

In his hurry, though, Meldrum left behind his black size 10D right-foot Reebok ice skate. When he realized his mistake, he came back to get his skate only to discover that it had disappeared.

Most people would probably have asked around but soon accepted that the skate was gone and tossed its lonely twin. But Meldrum is a man of principle and he really liked his skates. So, he kept the single left skate.

“I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away because it was brand new. I’d only used it two or three times,” he said.

The left skate was stored in Meldrum’s basement. Days turned to weeks, weeks turned to months, and months eventually to years. Meldrum kept skating occasionally, but he would always borrow a pair of skates from a friend.

“What I was really afraid of was, the day I throw this out, I’ll find the other one,” he told CBC.

Eventually, the time came for Meldrum and family to move house. While preparing for the move, the man was going through the sports equipment in his basement when he came across his lone skate.

The house he was moving to was smaller than his then-current one, so storage space was at a premium. He decided to make a difficult decision.

He set the skate down on a pile of stuff that was destined to be tossed out.

A pair of men's ice skates

Meanwhile, Elsewhere…

Let’s now rewind time back to the year when Meldrum first lost his right skate. Élyse Piquette, a woman who lives some six miles from the Meldrum home, was at the time walking along Chemin de la Rivière when she spotted something by the road.

A single black size 10D Reebok ice skate. A right-foot one.

She thought that no one would have intentionally thrown away such an expensive skate and it must have been lost by accident. She picked it up and resolved to find the owner.

She paid for a four-week ad in a local newspaper advertising the discovery of the lost skate, but nothing came of it. She then moved online and tried the same on the online classified advertising service Kijiji. Again, nothing.

For some reason, Piquette decided to hang on to the skate and like its twin in the Meldrum house, it ended up lying unused and forgotten in storage for years on end. Finally, after seven years, Piquette thought that she had accrued too much junk and it was time to get rid of some of it. That included our friend the skate.

She hung it by tje laces at a signpost at the end of her driveway, together with some hubcaps and a fireplace poker. People picked up everything but the skate.

It’s understandable, really. Who needs a single right-foot skate?

A Joyous Reunification

On June 22, Meldrum and his son – still with a small scar on his chin – were driving along the road Piquette lived on, when he noticed a single skate hanging off a signpost.

“I said to Owen jokingly, ‘Hey we should turn around — maybe that’s my skate’,” Meldrum said. And that’s what he did. Who knows why, maybe he just had a hunch.

And there it was. The black size 10D right-foot Reebok skate. The one he had been missing all these years.

Well, it’s not necessarily the exact skate. It might just as well be another Reebok skate of the same size that someone else lost. But the time when Piquette originally picked it up aligns with Meldrum losing his skate, so it’s good enough for him.

“This is pretty lucky how this turned out. I have hope, and when I believe that something will come around, it often does,” Meldrum said.

Piquette’s reaction when she was told the story was equally enthusiastic. “That’s amazing! That’s just the happiest possible ending to this!” she exclaimed.

They say that no good deed goes unpunished, but that doesn’t apply here. Meldrum was planning to reward the savior of his skate by having a cake delivered to her house.

He’s still not sure how he lost the skate in the first place. Maybe he left at a bench at the skating rink and it somehow ended up by the side of a road, or maybe he placed it on the roof of his car and just drove off. He doesn’t know and most likely will never find out.

But it doesn’t really matter, now does it? What matters is that Meldrum can finally hit the ice wearing his own pair of skates.

Want to tell your strange story? Tell us about it and it could be featured on Oddee. You can remain fully anonymous.



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Odd

Alien Monolith Discovered in Utah Desert

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  • Dear extraterrestrials, please stop leaving your weird metal constructs on public land.

Are we alone in the universe? Or do alien creatures occasionally – or maybe even regularly – descend from the skies to walk on Earth?

Some people certainly think so, and not all of them are UFO-hunting crackpots either. For example, you could go read our story of the ex-U.S. military boss who thinks we should have a defense plan against UFOs.

But if aliens do visit Earth, why don’t we ever see anything they might’ve left behind? Sure, there’s an occasional purported alien artefact – in addition to whatever what was involved in the Roswell crash – but if there were regular extraterrestrial visitors to Earth, you’d think they’d leave behind otherworldly sandwich wrappers or something.

But now we may have just found something. State officials in Utah have discovered a strange object sticking out of the ground in the middle of the desert.

What they found sure looks alien. It’s a 10-foot-tall shiny metal monolith, jutting out of Utah desert.

Anyone who’s watched 2001: Space Odyssey should be having chills right about now. The find is eerily similar to the black ominous rectangle responsible for human evolution that was depicted in the movie.

But what on Earth is the strange object? Is it even from Earth?

Photos courtesy of Utah Department of Public Safety.

A Strange Discovery

The strange object was discovered on November 18 by officials from the Utah Department of Public Safety, who were giving a helicopter ride to their colleagues from the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

They had taken to the air to perform a count of bighorn sheep in a part of southeastern Utah. As they were flying over the Red Rock Country – a particularly famous desert landscape – one of the biologist onboard the chopper noticed something on the ground.

Between the red rock faces, something metallic was shining.

“One of the biologists is the one who spotted it and we just happened to fly directly over the top of it,” the helicopter’s pilot Bret Hutchings told KSL TV.

“He was like: ‘Whoa, whoa, whoa, turn around, turn around!’ And I was like: ‘What?’ And he’s like: ‘There’s this thing back there – we’ve got to go look at it!’”

Not one to turn down such an enthusiastic request, the pilot identified a suitable landing spot. He brought the craft down, and the officials began to walk toward the thing they’d found.

And there it was. In the middle of nowhere, hidden between tall cliffs, stood a rectangular, polished silvery metal monolith.

“I’d say it’s probably between 10 and 12 feet-high,” Hutchings said.

The Out-of-place Oddity

Not only was the monolith itself strange, but its location made it even more eerie. There was no immediate indication of who had brought it there.

The officials found no footprints or car tracks. It was as if the thing had fallen out of the sky and buried itself in the ground.

What’s weirder, the soil around the spot is particularly hard-packed. It would’ve taken some serious effort to dig and cut a hole big enough to hold the monolith upright.

Yet, there was no sign of such activity either.

“That’s been about the strangest thing that I’ve come across out there in all my years of flying,” Hutchings told KSL TV.

“We were kind of joking around that if one of us suddenly disappears, then the rest of us make a run for it.”

The crew couldn’t figure out the purpose of the object, either. They speculated that it might have some space-based applications.

“We were, like, thinking is this something NASA stuck up there or something. Are they bouncing satellites off it or something?”

Maybe it was NASA. Or maybe it was… Aliens.

Alien Artwork?

Well, probably not. At least the helicopter crew doesn’t think so.

The thing is definitely an artificial construct, but the helicopter crew figured that it’s more of an art piece than any alien object.

“I’m assuming it’s some new wave artist or something or, you know, somebody that was a big Space Odyssey fan,” Hutchings said.

Whatever the monolith’s purpose, Utah Bureau of Land Management is currently determining whether it warrants a further investigation. Meanwhile, they’ve decided not to reveal the object’s exact location to the public.

“It is in a very remote area and if individuals were to attempt to visit the area, there is a significant possibility they may become stranded and require rescue,” Utah Department of Public Safety said.

Yeah, right. That sounds exactly the kind of story they’d come up with to keep us in the dark about alien encounters!

Speaking of aliens, if the monolith is of extraterrestrial origin, its owners might be in for a hefty fine if Utah officials catch them trying to retrieve their metal rectangle.

“It is illegal to install structures or art without authorization on federally managed public lands, no matter what planet you’re from,” the Department of Public Safety reminded.



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Eel Refuses to Die, Busts out of Heron in Aliens Reenactment

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  • If you’re body-horror adverse, tread no further, it’s as gruesome as you think.
  • Snake eels are hard-to-kill with hard heads and iron wills, they often burrow back out of the predators who consume them.

Nature is a brutal, unforgiving place. The fact the sun goes down at 3:30 in the afternoon should be reason enough to accept that as fact, but if you’re unconvinced (or a masochist), I present to you the eel. Researchers published a study in the Memoirs of the Queensland Museum journal about snake eels. They’re hard-headed, tough-to-kill guys who burrow out of the stomachs of the fish who eat them.

Make Sure Your Food is Dead

Photo by Roman Klimenko on Unsplash

Not to victim-blame here, but if you’re not going to chew your food, then you have to accept that some horrific things can happen–like your brunch shreds your innards. In these circumstances, the snake eels rarely make it back out into the world. The predator’s immune system encloses them in a cyst or abscess, where they’re mummified. Presumably, the predator dies as well. 

 

John Pogonoski, one of the snake eel researchers, told Live Science that their colleague once found a snake eels writhing around inside of a fish they caught and were about to eat. That sight alone would put me off food for a good long while. 

 

A few weeks ago, Sam Davis, an engineer by trade who takes wildlife photos to relax, got the shot of a lifetime. He took a series of pictures of a Delaware heron flying around with a snake eel wriggling out of her neck. Traumatizing. 

Just Out for a Nice Flight

Photo by Thomas Millot on Unsplash

Both the heron and the eel look remarkably casual in the photos, which are worth checking out on Live Science. Pogonoski even gave the heron even chances of surviving the encounter, as long as the wound didn’t get infected. The fact an eel-sized hole in the neck isn’t an instant death sentence for an animal is further evidence of how brutal it is. 

 

However, the eel may have been in worse shape following its madcap dash for freedom. They require specific salinity if you remember our story about the freedom fighter dumping 100 eels into a Brooklyn lake. So if the two animals finally parted over land or a freshwater lake, the snake eel would still die. 

 

Chew your food, folks.



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Man Leaves 42,000% Tip For Servers of Shuttered Restaurant

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  • Want to be a hero this holiday season? Be like this guy and tip generously for your takeout.
  • The anonymous man tipped $3K on a $7 beer the day before the restaurant shuttered for coronavirus.

If you’ve been following the ongoing devastation from the pandemic, restaurants are heading into a long, cold, dark winter. Usually, corporate holiday parties, family get-togethers, and drunken revelers fill their dining rooms this time of year. With the increasing danger from COVID, states are making the tough decision to halt indoor dining hoping to tamp down the ever-increasing daily record for total cases.

Restaurants are Suffering

Photo by Sam Dan Truong on Unsplash

Alongside the restaurant owners devastated by the pandemic are the restaurant workers. Servers and bartenders depend on tips for their survival, and with takeout only, they’re struggling to make ends meet. For one restaurant in Cleveland, the struggle became insurmountable.

Nighttown opted for a voluntary shut down to protect its employees and guests in the face of rising infection rates in Ohio. Their last service, for the time being, was brunch on Sunday.

An unnamed gentleman stopped by for a single beer, which came to $7.02. He filled out the receipt, told the server to split the tip with the rest of the waitstaff, and carried on with his day. Brendan Ring, Nighttown’s owner, ran after him when he saw the amount. The guest left a whopping $3,000 tip on his seven-dollar beer.

Ring chased down the man to make sure he didn’t mean $3, $30, or even $300. The anonymous hero said it was no mistake when Ring caught up with him and that he’d be back when Nighttown reopened.

You, Too, Can Be A Hero

Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

For a country struggling to pay its mortgage or put groceries on the table, $3,000 is make-or-break money. According to the Associated Press, four servers worked the brunch service, but $750 might be their rent for the month.

The landscape of the restaurant industry is dramatically changing. If you only eat at Olive Garden and PF Chang’s, you may not notice. But 100,000 restaurants closed between March and August of this year, and the number’s just going to keep growing. It’s not the big chains feeling the pinch of the recession either, it’s all the awesome neighborhood spots with the best dumplings, wings, or tacos.

Even for long-established neighborhood spots, increasing rent, razor-thin margins, and having to shutter or limit service for months at a time without sustained relief from the government has just been too much.

Takeout will be the only way we can enjoy our favorite spots this winter, so show your neighborhood restaurants some love.

And if this guy can leave $3000 to help a restaurant in his community, then we can all leave at least 25 percent when we pick up our takeout.

 



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