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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Greetings fellow Bizarros:

A new phenomenon has sprung up, apparently overnight. It is a game called Pokemon Go, and I swear I was cruising around the news sites just yesterday and didn't see a thing about it, but today I saw no less than six stories!

In simple terms, Pokemon Go uses your phone's GPS and clock to detect where and when you are in the game and make Pokemon 'appear' around you (on your phone screen) so you can go and catch them. As you move around, different and more types of Pokemon will appear depending on where you are and what time it is. The idea is to encourage you to travel around the real world to catch Pokemon in the game.

An interesting idea, mixing the real world and a game world, but I think anybody can see the inherent danger in this. People texting on their phones are a public menace as it is, but millions of people wandering around following imaginary monsters on their phones is a recipe for disaster. I thought for sure the first victim of this craze was going to be some stupid kid wandering out into traffic after a Bulbasaur or a Squirtle (I had to look those names up), but I underestimated American ingenuity.

Armed robbers used the game to lure victims to an isolated trap in Missouri, police reported on Sunday.

At about 2am officers responded to a robbery report that led them to four people, all local residents aged 16 to 18, in a black BMW in a CVS parking lot. The occupants tried to discard a handgun out of the car when an officer approached, said Sgt Bill Stringer. The officer then identified the four people as suspects of similar armed robberies described in St Louis and St Charles counties.

The police believe the suspects used the phone app, which directs users to capture imaginary creatures superimposed onto the real world, to tempt players into secluded areas where they could be easily robbed. At a certain level in the game, he noted, players can congregate at local landmarks to join teams and battle.

"Using the geolocation feature," Stringer said, "the robbers were able to anticipate the location and level of seclusion of unwitting victims."

The police added a warning, however. "If you use this app or have children that do we ask you to please use caution when alerting strangers of your future location."

The adult suspects were charged with first degree robbery, a felony, and had bond set at $100,000 cash.

Bizarrely,
Lewis

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Questions? Comments? Email: lewis@gophercentral.com




*------------ In a Related Story... ------------*

The U.S. Holocaust Museum is telling visitors to stop playing the wildly popular Pokemon Go game. "Playing the game is not appropriate in the museum, which is a memorial to the victims of Nazism," Andrew Hollinger, a museum spokesman, said. "We are trying to find out if we can get the museum excluded from the game." The museum is one of many cultural landmarks labeled as a 'PokeStop' where players can score free in-game items. The Holocaust Museum is tagged with three separate PokeStop locations on its premises. The designation is distracting visitors from the museum's focus, the newspaper added, which is Nazi Germany's slaughter of about 6 million Jews.

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*--------------- Cheetah Paw Wins ---------------*

It seems like criminals are hardly trying anymore. A young girl in Southern California managed to fight off a potential kidnapper in her home by using a Kung Fu move. Police said that the man broke through the window at the 8-year-old girl's home in El Cajon. He then went upstairs to grab her and attempted to drag her down the stairs before she managed to use a Kung Fu pressure move on his neck to escape. "I didn't even know. I laid asleep while all this was happening," the girl's mother told local news. The said she recently learned the move, which she called "the Cheetah Paw" at her Kung Fu class and decided to use it, "Because it hurt him." Police used a K-9 to search for the home invader, who the girl said "smelled like garbage," but were unable to find him.




*-------------- READER COMMENTS --------------*

It's too bad the story about the convict who broke out of jail didn't include the kind of beer he ordered. Remember that old advertisement, 'I'd walk a mile for a Camel.' Imagine the mileage some brewery could get out of that story. 'Would you break out of prison for a Miller High Life? Shaun Higham did.'


Hey, you can't blame the guy for bragging about his escape. After a few Chardonnays I'll tell ya whatever you'd like to know. -Buck


That shopper in Colorado didn't just forget a bag of cocaine at the grocery store. He (or she) probably left it in exchange for the groceries. When the economy and the job market get really bad this kind of black market 'bartering' becomes really common.

*----------- END OF READER COMMENTS ----------*

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