The Week in Review
MONDAY, MAY 6 A week of cartoonish stupidity and grim silver linings kicks off with this riddle, which we've had to ponder alarmingly often over the years: Why is it that you always find three kidnapped women in the last place you look? Today that place is a dilapidated white house in Cleveland, where a terrified 27-year-old woman clawed through a locked storm door before bolting to freedom with help from neighbors. "Help me, I am Amanda Berry," she subsequently told a 911 dispatcher. "I've been kidnapped, and I've been missing for 10 years. And I'm here. I'm free now." Horrifically, first responders soon realized that Berry wasn't the only woman allegedly held captive in the boarded-up two-story house. As all news outlets everywhere will soon report, homeowner and former school bus driver Ariel Castro was arrested today in a McDonald's parking lot on suspicion of abducting three young women from his own neighborhood and holding them hostage for more than a decade. Later this week, the 52-year-old will be charged with kidnapping all three women: 32-year-old Michelle Knight in August 2002 when she was 21, Berry a day before her 17th birthday in April 2003, and 23-year-old Gina DeJesus in April 2004, when she was just 14. Castro will also be charged with multiple counts of rape.
TUESDAY, MAY 7 Today brings more brain-melting details about Ariel Castro's alleged house of horrors, among them: The three woman were allowed outside only twice during their decade in captivity, according to police reports. Castro himself attended at least two public vigils for Amanda Berry and Gina DeJesus while they were allegedly trapped in his home, CNN reports, and he jovially served his alleged victims cake on the anniversaries of their abductions, reports New York Daily News. Michelle Knight was allegedly beaten so badly that she now needs facial reconstructive surgery and is deaf in one ear, reports the Huffington Post. "Knight was allegedly impregnated five times by Castro, but he is accused of starving and repeatedly punching her in the stomach to induce miscarriages each time," CNN adds. Meanwhile, Berry was reportedly forced to give birth to a daughter, fathered by Castro, in a plastic kiddie pool in the house "so the mess was easier to clean up," the police report states. If there's a grim silver lining to the women's decade-long nightmare, it's that they survived. Here's hoping that they get all the counseling they need to recover from the brutal abuse and psychological mindfuckery allegedly imposed on them over the past decade—especially Berry's now 6-year-old daughter.
•• In less grim silver linings, today in Zimbabwe a man awoke in the midst of his own funeral. Details come from NewZimbabwe.com, which reports that 34-year-old Brighton Dama Zanthe was declared dead on Monday after battling a protracted illness. "Zanthe's body had already been put in a coffin" and readied for burial, NewZimbabwe.com explains, but during the viewing, mourners noticed the dead man's legs twitching in his coffin. "Everything is history to me," the resurrected dead man told the press. "What I can only confirm is that people gathered at my house to mourn, but I was given another chance and I am alive. I feel okay now."
WEDNESDAY, MAY 8 In lighter news, today the Catholic League, America's "largest Catholic civil rights organization," embraced its irrelevancy by condemning, of all things, David Bowie. On its blog, the group labeled the pivotal musician as a "switch-hitting, bisexual senior citizen" for his music video "The Next Day," in which a Jesus-like Bowie criticizes Catholic priests for being senior citizens who maybe worship Satan. It's nice to know that decades of child-rape scandals, homophobia, and institutionalized misogyny haven't distracted the Catholic League from doing the Lord's work: picking fights with pop artists.
•• Speaking of God's soldiers, today Tim Lambesis, the lead singer of the Christian metal band As I Lay Dying, will be arraigned in San Diego on felony counts of soliciting a hit man to murder his estranged wife. "In divorce papers, Lambesis is accused of becoming emotionally distant from his family and being obsessed with bodybuilding and touring," reports the Los Angeles Times. Prior to today's hearing, Lambesis was most famous for soliciting "mosh calls for the Lord" and urging fans to "crowd-surf for the virgin birth."
THURSDAY, MAY 9 In news that makes even God's soldiers look dignified, today the Associated Press reports that Disney has abandoned plans to trademark the phrase "Dia de los Muertos" for movie-making purposes. Apparently, Disney forgot that "Dia de los Muertos" is also the name of a holiday that's been celebrated in Mexico for the past 2,500 or so years—a fact the corporation was reminded of this week when a Los Angeles–based cartoonist launched an online campaign mocking Disney's trademark request. "Lalo Alcaraz created a movie poster that quickly went viral of a skeletal Godzilla-sized Mickey Mouse, with the words 'It's coming to trademark your cultura [culture],'" the AP reports. Days after Alcaraz's satirical cartoon hit the internet, "Disney said it was no longer seeking a 'Dia de los Muertos' trademark request because the film's name will change before its release," the AP states.
FRIDAY, MAY 10 The week continues with a spot of genuinely good news, as today a young woman was rescued after spending 17 days trapped under the rubble of a collapsed Bangladesh garment factory that killed more than 1,100 people. She celebrated by immediately announcing her retirement from the garment industry. "I will never work in the factory," the liberated 19-year-old told reporters. "No more. No, no."
SATURDAY, MAY 11 Nothing happened today.
SUNDAY, MAY 12 Today was Mother's Day, a holiday thousands of Americans harmlessly toasted with a Big Gulp of wine and generous maternal huggings, but which one or more unidentified suspects in New Orleans celebrated by shooting wildly into a mom-themed street parade. Nineteen people were injured by gunfire, including two 10-year-old children, but—once again, grim silver lining!—nobody died.
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