Friday, January 18, 2013

That's Not Right

I suppose that every week while looking for the odd news stories,  it could be said that "something is off-kilter. Hardly a week goes by where some crime is committed and we all think to ourselves: That person had to be either drunk or high.   This week I managed to find at least a few news items where it appears that the participants were sober...OK...maybe there is a small chance on the third story.

Is It a Boat or is It a House?

 On Tuesday of this week a decision came down from the U.S. Supreme Court that decided that this was a house not a boat. (no, I didn't mean Judge Judy's Court...I am talking about U.S. Supreme Court.)

Don't let the water fool's a house.

In 2006, after Hurricane Wilma destroyed the marina where Fane Lozman had his houseboat moored, he decided to move it to to a marina in Riviera Beach about 80 miles north of Miami.   After moving to the new marina, Lozman found himself at odds with the city.  Riviera Beach tried to evict him and other houseboat owners to make way for a $2.4 million dollar luxury development.

As a result of his efforts, the development plans fell apart but the city contended that Fane owed them docking fees and they charged that his dachshund was a public nuisance. Fane contended that the city was seeking retribution. can't call a man's dog a nuisance and not expect a Fane took the city to court.

This is where things start getting interesting.  Fane won an early victory when the first jury said the city couldn't evict him.  They also, said the city had to keep the marina public

In 2008, the city came up with another plan for the luxury development and again Lozman fought against this. The city, however, went to court to have the houseboat declared a vessel.  By having it declared a boat it would be subject to maritime rules.  The court agreed. This gave the city the right to seize the "now boat" for unpaid dock fees.  Riviera Beach seized the boat and put it up for auction.

Guess, who the highest bidder was???  Yes, I am sure you guessed right!  The city outbid everyone and bought the boat.  The very next day they destroyed it.

Lozman appealed to the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. Represented by  Stanford Law School Supreme Court Clinic, Lozman contended that the city had no right to destroy his house for back dock fees under maritime rules because his house wasn't a boat.

In a 7-2 decision the highest court in the U.S.  said this:

"To state the obvious, a wooden washtub, a plastic dishpan, a swimming platform on pontoons, ....or Pinocchio (when inside the whale), none of these are vessels" noted Justice Stephen Breyer. "They are 'artificial contrivances' capable of floating, moving under tow, and incidentally carrying even a fair-sized item or two when they do so. Still, none of these is a vessel under federal maritime law because none is "used as a means of transportation."

That seals the deal, after several lower court cases... there is a definitive decision....wooden washtubs, plastic dishpans and swimming platforms just took a major hit.  No more considering themselves a boat.  As for little boy might just want to appeal.  

The Dog Did It

Yet, another odd story out of Florida this week.  James Campbell and Iris Fortner were coming home to their house in Cantonment when James got out of the car to open a metal gate outside their property.

Fortner, who was driving opened the driver's side door to see where Campbell was standing before she continued driving in.  Unfortunately, Fortner's boxer ran into the car and stood on the accelerator.  The car ran over Campbell.  He was pronounced dead at the scene.

There was no additional details as to if the dog was being charged with vehicular manslaughter or even reckless driving. Still one must say "Bad Doggy!"

He Really....Really Loves His Couch

A Wisconsin man charged with having curbside sex with a couch (yes, the couch...not someone on a couch...the couch)  is negotiating for a plea bargain.  He is hoping to have prosecutors charge him with misdemeanor charges.

Gerard Streator is due back in court on February 25th for a plea sentencing hearing resulting from being arrested for lewd and lascivious behavior.

Off-duty police officer, Ryan Edwards was out for a job when he noticed a man on a abandoned couch sitting on a curb.  The man appeared to be having sex.  Officer Edwards assumed there was a 2nd person out of his line of sight but as he approached he realized that Streator was using the sofa cushions as his love interest.  (seriously...EWWWWW)

The couch is not pressing charges.  It's a proud moment is one's life when you try to negotiate your sexual exploits down to a misdemeanor.


meleahrebeccah said...

Oh man. I feel badly for Lozman. He totally got screwed.

WTF? A dog killed a person with a car? Now I've heard it ALL! Holy crap.

Sex with a sofa? Okay, NOW I've REALLY heard it ALL!

Cheryl P. said...

I think Lozman probably will be suing Riviera Beach for the cost of his non-boat now that he has a U.S. Supreme Court ruling saying he had a house not a boat. If I were Riviera Beach, I would be lining up a really good lawyer. Lozman might be owning their town soon.
Crazy, huh? I would love to read the police report. Driver of the car: Rover
Was there alcohol in his system: No but there was chew-bone and old shoe leather.
If the best girlfriend this guy can find is a sofa, he is seriously pun intended.

luvbeingagrandpa said...

Too funny, let me introduce you to Lisa.....

Cheryl P. said... doubt pervy man would jjjuuuuusssttt LOVE Lisa. As sofas go...Lisa looks rather slutty.

Bodaciousboomer said...

Having sex on an abandoned couch outside?
Not the outside part, not the couch part, just the part about being on someone else's old couch outside.

Cheryl P. said...

Oh, let's throw in the outside part AND the fact that it is a couch part AND that it is someone's old couch part as well. Then we can call it the trifecta of ickyness.

cardiogirl said...

Okay, for some reason I just assumed the couch belonged to the guy. It's extra gross now that it wasn't even his couch. Yuck.

On a related side note, I saw a crazy show on TLC called My Strange Addiction and there was a 20-something guy who considered his car his girlfriend/lover. They showed him French kissing the car's bumper and he admitted that he had sex with the car.

People are disgusting.

Cheryl P. said...

Oh deeaaarrr, gawd...that is disgusting about the car...oh and the couch, too for that matter. You know things are bad when there are enough disgusting addictions that a TV network can run a reality show....and probably never run out of material. Crazy world we live in.

meleahrebeccah said...

Driver of the car ­ Rover!


Lia said...

at first I thought the first story was going to be laughably ridiculous. It's still ridiculous, but in an epic way because I love when the little man wins against the big guy (thanks to an even bigger guy...)

The 2nd story is just sad :( I feel so bad and ... oh god what a freak accident.

Okay the third Rape of inanimate object? Can it be rape? Erhm.... I plead the 5th on this one

Cheryl P. said...

I agree on the first story...while parts of it are laughable such as that Pinoccio made it into a writtine judgement by the Supreme Court but the fact this fight went all the way through the justice system and a single individual came out on top, is pretty interesting.
Yes, the 2nd story is sad. I decided to include it because of the oddness of the circumstance.
Third story is as crazy as I suspect the couch rapist to be.

Jo-Anne said...

Yeah the first story was laughable and well poor ole Pinoccio didn't ask to be dragged into the story sure he isn't a boat either but then the houseboat well I always thought houseboats were boats but seems I was wrong...........moving on to the second story are you sure it was Fortner's boxer that ran into the car and not a boxer named year sad Jo-Anne so lets move onto story number 3 and well I feel sorry for the couch true they are use to people having sex on them just not with them....

lisleman said...

There goes my idea of riding Pinocchio across the ocean.
That last one - he was probably testing a new spot remover or maybe digging for a couch potato.

Riot Kitty said...

I thought my brother's cat was the only one who got it off with pillows? Live and learn. Oh, and I'll go un-dock my washtub now.

momto8blog said...

oh my gosh..that boat or house or whatever it to read about!
I am glad we do not have outside sofas here.

Cheryl P. said...

I thought that was funny that Pinoccio was brought up, as well. So now we are all clear he was never a boat.
Oh ...and the couch...thank goodness, the couch is unaware of all of the unfortunate nastiness because this guy's mug shot is goofy.

Cheryl P. said...

I hope when you were contemplating riding Pinocchio (that sounds amazingly dirty) that you planned on being inside the whale. That is the scenario that the Judge ruled was not to be confused with a boat.

I would hate to think what might be on that couch at this point. Again....EWWWWW

Cheryl P. said...

haha...Your brother has a sicko cat. I am still not convinced that your washtub isn't really a boat, despite what the Judge said. Clearly a butcher and baker and candlestick maker went to sea in one. Mother Goose thought it was a boat.

Cheryl P. said...

I thought that boat thing was pretty interesting as Supreme Court cases go. I would be curious if that ruling that houseboats aren't vessels will cause a lot of marina owners problems collecting dock fees. You can't charge dock fees on houses, just boats. Seattle marina owners are probably drawing up new contracts with the word houses inserted in there somewhere.

Yes...I agree that having sofas sitting on the curb is never a good thing. Here the city would be sending over the trash collector and sending a bill with it.

totsymae1011 said...

Looks like a makeshift trailer on water. Sure wouldn't want to be out there, whether it's a house or boat. I can't swim a lick.

L.C. Griffith said...

Cheryl, did the guy get a new houseboat? LOL!!

Okay, the dog story was upsetting, but the really upsetting thing is that I thought you were going to say that the dog got ran over and I was actually a little relieved that it was the man. Yeah, I'm sick. Maybe I need a psychiatrist. I could lye on his couch and tell him all of my problems. As long as it's not that disgusting couch that ole lover lumps was molesting! LOL! Really? Ha! Some people....

Cheryl P. said...

I agree with you, Totsymae, that it really doesn't look like a house or a boat. According to the article he had renovated the inside and when the city destroyed it they destroyed all his personal possessions as well. That would be sure to tick someone off.

I am a fairly good swimmer but I remember before I learned to swim that being out on water freaked me out. Stay on dry ground!!! Wouldn't want you to take any chances.

Cheryl P. said...

The news reports didn't address if he was going after the city for a replacement or cash but we can assume he is...can't we???

No you don't need a psychiatrist!!! Yes, it was a disturbing story..even bizarre but human error played a role. Someone had the car in "drive". The dog didn't shift it unless he is a really a special dog. If the dog had been run over he would of played no fault in the accident. Either way it would be a sad story.

If I would accidentally sit on a molested couch. I would have to soak in Clorox Bleach or something. UGH!!!!

Aleta said...

OMG, how lovely the courts can drag details around with the idea of a floating house or is it a boat... sheshhh... only in our court system!
And ewwwwwww to the couch guy.... uh, gives a new meaning to coach potato. Gross!

Cheryl P. said...

That was the initial thought that I had when I noticed that this case went all the way from lower Florida courts to the US Supreme Court. I gather this decision is going to be a big problem in states like Washington where there are large numbers of houseboats that are governed by maritime rules. I did think Judge Breyer's reading of the decision was funny though. I guess the people that own washtubs, dishpans and boy puppets have had their rights limited....well as much as they can never grow up to be boats now.

The couch....EEEWWWW for sure.

abeerfortheshower said...

I'm glad it was a room full of judges that decided a house wasn't a boat, and not something like common sense. Common sense is way too busy being ignored by almost everyone on the planet to be bothered with our every day trivialities.

Cheryl P. said...

Common sense??? Refresh my does that work??? I am still trying to figure out how to call my house something other than a house and have it work for me. Zoo? Library? Surely there is a way to get out of paying real estates on my ex-house, now it's a restaurant...or a hotel. Someone better call the Supreme Court to figure this out.

Bodaciousboomer said...

I never had sex on a couch outside. However decades ago, when My BFF and I drank to excess (occasionally) we sat, he in his robe, me in a nighty, and had cocktails on a wing chair his neighbor had put out for pick up. It was another time.

Cheryl P. said...

You have led a much more interesting life than mine. I remain optimistic for reincarnation so I get to try again.

Linda R. said...

Oh, that second story is so sad. What a freak accident, and so hard to live with even though it was totally an accident. :(

Cheryl P. said...

Yes, it is sad. I included it because it is so odd as accidents go. I am still curious if the driver was out of the car why it was in drive. The dog didn't do that. Very confusing.