MONDAY, MARCH 29 This week of flammable adolescents, rescued fireworks, and busted Bellingham cock-wranglers kicks off today in Moscow, where this morning brought a pair of deadly suicide bombings to the Russian capital's subway system. As CNN reports, the first blast occurred just before 8:00 a.m. at the Lubyanka station (near the Kremlin and the Federal Security Service headquarters), while the second blast occurred 40 minutes later at the Park Kultury station, with the double-whammy suicide bombings killing 40 people and wounding 121 others. "Our preliminary assessment is that this act of terror was committed by a terrorist group from the North Caucasus region," said Alexander Bortnikov of the Federal Security Service, alluding to the ongoing war between Russian security forces and the ethnic republics of Dagestan, Ingushetia, Chechnya, and Kabardino-Balkaria. On Thursday, the Guardian reports, Russia's counterterrorism committee will identify today's female suicide bombers as 17-year-old Dzhanet Abdurakhmanova and 20-year-old Markha Ustarkhanova, while Chechnya's chief insurgent leader will issue a video claiming the bombings were revenge for Russian forces' February massacre of four unarmed garlic pickers near the border between Chechnya and Ingushetia. As for today: Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin said those responsible for the Moscow subway attacks "will be destroyed." (It takes a big man to threaten to destroy two people who already exploded themselves.)
TUESDAY, MARCH 30 The week continues with a different kind of kaboom in Federal Way, Washington, where school district superintendent Tom Murphy is warning parents about "a dangerous activity that is increasing in frequency among young people. Children are using Axe body spray, a popular cologne among young people, to light themselves or their clothing on fire." Further details come from the official statement Superintendent Murphy sent to parents and posted on the school district's website: "It appears the activity is gaining popularity because of videos on YouTube... Middle school boys are among the most at-risk for participating in dangerous experiments with fire, although all children should be warned of the danger... Lighting a person on fire can lead to first, second, or third degree burns as well as damage to property and criminal prosecution." As school district spokeswoman Deb Stenberg told the Associated Press, five students—all male sixth-graders—have been expelled for Axe-related immolation since February 23, with the most recent incident happening last Wednesday. Lucky break: None of the auto-arsons have resulted in injuries or property damage, and expelled students have been allowed to return to school after completing a fire-education program.
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 31 The week continues with depressing news from the Seattle nonprofit One Reel, which today announced that it could not secure the necessary sponsorship for the Fourth of July fireworks show it has presented every year for over two decades, and so the event was canceled. But today's cruddy news will turn into tomorrow's triumph, as KIRO-FM radio host Dave Ross uses his Thursday morning airtime to launch a "save the fireworks" campaign, drawing an immediate $5,000 donation from his on-air guest, celebrity chef and One Reel board member Tom Douglas, and pledging $1,000 of his own. By 5:00 p.m., KIRO reports, business owners will have pledged $79,000, inspiring Starbucks and Microsoft to match all donations up to a combined maximum of $250,000. "By Friday morning, with more than $485,000 raised from corporations, smaller businesses, and individuals, Bill Pettit, president of Merrill Gardens, decided the Seattle-based senior-housing company would pledge whatever was still needed to bring the campaign to the $500,000 finish line," reports the Seattle Times. "I have a hard time picturing Seattle dark over the Fourth of July," said Pettit to the Times. "We're still fortunate enough to have a lot of veterans and spouses of veterans [living in Merrill Gardens facilities]. For us, this holiday in particular is a very meaningful holiday." Humongous thanks to all who helped save the fireworks, which are scheduled to explode over Gas Works Park in 95 days.
THURSDAY, APRIL 1 Nothing happened today, unless you count the Vatican's proclamation that Pope Benedict can't be made to face a jury over his alleged conspiring to protect pedophile clergymen in the U.S., due to His Holiness's alleged status as a head of state, which grants him immunity from foreign courts. (This is not an April Fools' joke.)
FRIDAY, APRIL 2 The week continues with falling debris in downtown Seattle, where this morning three people around Fifth Avenue and Virginia Street were struck by bricks and various other chunks of the facade of the Icon Grill building. "The three people hurt in the incident were taken to Harborview Medical Center," reports KIRO, which identifies the debris victims as a 45-year-old man who was knocked down and hurt his back, a 23-year-old woman who was struck in the leg, and a 40-year-old man who was struck in the head. The first two were treated and released, while the third remains hospitalized in serious condition.
Meanwhile in the University District, a man was arrested after accidentally shooting his downstairs neighbor in the head. As KOMO reports, it was early this afternoon when the thirtysomething suspect had his "rifle resting with the barrel aimed at the floor." Reportedly unaware that the rifle was loaded, the man pulled the trigger, sending a bullet through the floor and striking his 44-year-old downstairs neighbor in the head. The victim was taken to Harborview for treatment of a "non-life-threatening" wound, while the suspect was booked into King County Jail for investigation of reckless endangerment.
SATURDAY, APRIL 3 Nothing happened today, unless you count the creepy cockfighting bust in Bellingham, where 14 people are facing charges of felony animal-fighting after being caught by cops in a blood-soaked barn. To paraphrase one of the rescued roosters (four of which were hurt so badly they had to be euthanized), cock-a-doodle-don't.
SUNDAY, APRIL 4 The week ends with Easter, the multipurpose holiday commemorating the zombie resurrection of Jesus and celebrated in a variety of ways, including the hiding of eggs by adults, the finding of eggs by children, and the consumption of nasty candy by everyone.
Speaking of holiday hubbub over a dead guy: Today the Associated Press shared a beguiling tale out of Iowa, where yesterday a pair of teenagers attended an Easter egg hunt and found a corpse. As the AP reports, the teens had accompanied their siblings to the egg hunt in Des Moines's Beaverdale Park, when they wandered away and found the body of Goddi Ishima, a recent immigrant from Africa who police will report was found with a rope around his neck and wounds consistent with suicide. Condolences to all.
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