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Pets, owners flock to Madrid church for blessing of animals - 17 Jan 2019 at 12:07pm - Dogs, cats and birds were blessed at a church in Madrid on Thursday on the feast day of St. Anthony, the patron saint of animals, with many of the owners making an annual pilgrimage for their pets.

Face value: One-time Afghan wedding singer a ringer for Canada's Trudeau - 17 Jan 2019 at 9:09am - Afghan singer Abdul Salam Maftoon's striking resemblance to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has turned him into an unlikely celebrity in the war-torn country since his debut on a talent show.

All the rage: Beijingers vent their stress in 'anger room' - 14 Jan 2019 at 11:51am - It took Smash customer Qiu Siyu just a few sharp blows with a baseball bat to wreck what looked like an old car radio, after which two friends battered telephones, audio speakers, rice cookers and even a mannequin.

College fanatics living it up on San Jose billboard - 4 Jan 2019 at 8:10pm - Diehard sports fans often go to great lengths to show their allegiance but some college football supporters took their loyalty to new heights when they agreed to live on a San Jose billboard ahead of Monday's national championship game.

'Why don't you die?': Australian's fight with a spider sparks police call - 2 Jan 2019 at 6:57pm - An Australian man triggered an emergency police response after a noisy exchange with a spider startled a passerby into reporting what sounded like a violent disturbance to the authorities, media reported.

Thieves use mechanical diggers to tear open Italian security van - 2 Jan 2019 at 11:49am - Thieves used mechanical diggers on Wednesday to prise open an armored van on a highway in southern Italy and made off with more than 2 million euros ($2.3 million) in cash, police said.

Korean Air to raise refund fees after K-pop fans get the picture, get off - 18 Dec 2018 at 7:11pm - Korean Air Lines Co Ltd said on Tuesday it will raise refund penalties after K-pop fans got on a plane only to take pictures of a boy band on the flight, then demanded to get off before it departed and got refunds on their tickets.

Bees, brothels and monkey selfies: oh my; 2018 abuzz with odd U.S. stories - 17 Dec 2018 at 1:22pm - A hive of honeybees in the heart of New York City, a monkey with a photographer's eye, a brothel full featuring robotic sex dolls and a political candidate who carried the day from his grave were among the characters featured in the strangest stories of 2018.

Worth the sting: Cuba's scorpion pain remedy - 14 Dec 2018 at 1:43pm - Once a month for the last decade, Pepe Casanas, a 78-year-old Cuban farmer, has hunted down a scorpion to sting himself with, vowing that the venom wards off his rheumatism pains.

No free money in New Jersey: Police want spilled banknotes back - 13 Dec 2018 at 9:54pm - Police in New Jersey on Thursday urged people who grabbed banknotes that spilled out of the back of an armored truck during rush-hour traffic to return the cash, no questions asked.

Chirp perp: Finches found in luggage at NY airport - 13 Dec 2018 at 2:55pm - A man was caught at New York's JFK airport last weekend trying to smuggle dozens of South American finches into the country, a bird that Guyanese immigrants covet for chirping but officials fear could spread disease, officials said on Thursday.

Craps: Dice roll sinks Arkansas candidate who twice missed voting for himself - 13 Dec 2018 at 2:11pm - An Arkansas city council candidate who twice showed up too late to vote for himself in a contest that ended in a tie wound up losing the race on Thursday in a dice roll to decide the winner.

'Benny the Beluga' facing Christmas in the Thames far from home - 13 Dec 2018 at 7:44am - A beluga whale that was first spotted nearly three months ago in the River Thames is still feeding healthily east of the British capital and facing a lone Christmas hundreds of miles from its normal Arctic habitat.

Bug business: Cockroaches corralled by the millions in China to crunch waste - 12 Dec 2018 at 9:44am - In the near pitch-dark, you can hear them before you see them - millions of cockroaches scuttling and fluttering across stacks of wooden boards as they devour food scraps by the tonne in a novel form of urban waste disposal.

Curry signals willingness to meet with NASA over Moon landing doubts - 11 Dec 2018 at 8:11pm - Three-time NBA champion Stephen Curry on Tuesday signaled that he is willing to take NASA up on its offer to tour its lunar lab in Houston after his pronouncement this week that he does not believe humans ever walked on the Moon.

Firefighters to the rescue after German chocolate factory spill - 11 Dec 2018 at 7:55pm - Firefighters in the town of Werl in western Germany tackled an unusual emergency late on Monday when a tank at a local firm making liquid chocolate overflowed and poured out onto a street.

Monkeys run amok in India's corridors of power - 11 Dec 2018 at 6:51am - India's government faces a tough re-election battle next year but first it must deal with an opponent as wily as any political rival, troops of monkeys that have become a big threat around its offices in New Delhi.

Enter the Bull: Fighters mix kung fu and bullfighting in China - 6 Dec 2018 at 12:11pm - Several times a week, kung fu teacher Ren Ruzhi enters a ring to spar with a bovine opponent around five times his weight and capable of killing him.

Cops seek suitor who dropped engagement ring down NYC grating - 2 Dec 2018 at 11:16am - New York City police sought on Saturday for an unlucky suitor who dropped an engagement ring down a Times Square grating while proposing to his fiancee, who nonetheless told him yes.

Air New Zealand Christmas ad replicates Trump's U.N. laughter moment - 30 Nov 2018 at 12:51am - An Air New Zealand advertisement released for the Christmas season this week takes a dig at U.S. President Donald Trump by portraying an American boy wearing a "Make Christmas Great Again" red cap being laughed at by other children on Santa's "naughty" list.