Posts by Claudine Zap

  • Hand sanitizer possible cause of freak fire that injured 11-year-old girl

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Could hand sanitizer light a T-shirt on fire?

    Officials in Oregon are researching a possible link between the cleanser and a mysterious blaze that ignited an 11-year-old girl’s T-shirt during a hospital stay. The girl is now scheduled for skin grafts to treat her injuries.

    First reported byOregon Live, Ireland Lane, a cancer survivor, was staying at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital for an unrelated head injury. While playing in her bed on the day she was to leave the hospital, she suddenly ran screaming from the room, her T-shirt ablaze.

    Her dad, Stephen Lane, who had dozed off nearby, ran after his daughter and smothered the flames himself. According to the Oregon Live story, Ireland suffered from third-degree burns.

    "I've been in medicine going back 30 years now and never heard anything like this. And hopefully I never will again," Dr. Stacy Nicholson, assistant chief at Doernbecher Children's Hospital, told local station KATU.

  • Homeless man returns diamond ring accidentally dropped into his change cup

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    A homeless man who hit the jackpot in his change cup—a diamond ring—showed he had a heart of gold by returning it.

    The woman who accidentally dumped her engagement ring along with all the spare change in her wallet into the cup noticed the mistake long after she had given the pricey item to the Kansas City man, Billy Ray Harris.

    Sarah Darling, who hadn't meant to be quite that generous to the man on the street, explained to Kansas City, Mo.'s KCTV that "my rings were bothering me, so I put them in my coin purse."

    Darling said she didn't realize what she'd done until the next day.

    "I was so incredibly upset because, more than just the value of the ring, it had sentimental value," she said.

    Needless to say, Darling returned to the scene the next day.

    Harris told the station, "The ring was so big that I knew if it was real, it was expensive."

    Darling gratefully told the TV station, "It seemed like a miracle. I thought for sure there was no way I would get it back.”

  • Washington Post fooled by fake story of Sarah Palin joining Al-Jazeera

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Fake news fools again.

    Another journalist fell prey to a fake story on a satirical website, and reported it as news. This time, a blogger for the Washington Post reported—wrongly—that Sarah Palin, the former Republican candidate for vice president who recently parted way with Fox News, had moved on to the Al-Jazeera network to reach millions of "devoutly religious people."


    As surfaced by Politico, Washington Post blogger Suzi Parker cited the Daily Currant as her source for a “She the People” column under the headline “Sarah Palin tries to stay relevant.”

    Parker even pulled a quote from the story supposedly from the maverick herself:

    The Washington Post later posted a correction:

  • Homeless man sends his dog for help, dog saves the day

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    One lucky man's best friend is a dog named Buddy.

    The homeless man, who's from a remote area in Washington state, suffered a medical emergency and had no way to call for help. He did, however, have his plucky pooch.

    The Australian shepherd mix was found by a woman walking her dog on train tracks in the town of Tumwater, with a note attached to its harness. The desperate letter read: “Help. Send help. No joke, cannot walk. Medicine not working. Need doctor.”

    The woman called 911 and handed over the plea to the police. The note wasn’t signed so officers were unsure where to look, but they had heard a man and a dog lived in a camp in the woods and were eventually able to find him.

    Detective Jen Kolb told KIRO 7 Eyewitness News, “He was absolutely immobile. He was in his camp and couldn’t move from his location. He didn’t have a phone to call anybody. No way to reach out to anybody for help, and he was afraid he was going to die.”

    Attaching a note to his trusty friend? A last-ditch effort to contact the outside world. And it worked.

  • Black family claims Disney’s White Rabbit character refused to touch their kids

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Could an actor playing the White Rabbit be racist?

    Disneyland is being sued by Jason and Annelia Black, who say their African-American children were treated differently than white kids who approached the “Alice in Wonderland” character for hugs and pictures at the Anaheim, Calif., amusement park.

    According to, 6-year-old Jason Black Jr. approached his favorite character at the park, but was rebuffed. Jason told the station, “I went to hug him, but he turned his back. It’s made me feel sad because I wanted to really hug him.”

    Older brother Elijah reportedly then tried to hold the rabbit’s hand, but was pushed away. At first, Jason Black Sr. thought perhaps a new “no touch” policy had been implemented in the park, until he observed the same character hugging the white children who approached him around the same time.

    Black told local news station CBS2 Los Angeles that the White Rabbit had behaved warmly with the white children: “The rabbit ... hugged them, kissed them, posed with them and took pictures. Meanwhile, that made my kids feel horrible."

  • A security guard tasers a woman, gets crowdsourced donations

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Kevin James, move over, a new mall cop's in town.

    Darien Long, a shopping mall security guard, has received a rush of donations after posting a video that showed him applying a Taser to an abusive woman outside an Atlanta mall.

    After telling the woman to leave for disorderly conduct, Long is heard on the video saying, “Back it up,” and shows her the Taser. The woman begins hitting him on the head anyway, and Long uses the Taser on the woman, who drops to the ground near the children she is with, who appear understandably upset.

    The shocking video, filmed last May, went viral, and a crowdsourced campaign toraise moneyto get the mall guard even better equipment has already brought in some $20,000.

    Long, who has been the property manager for a year, told local Atlanta news station WSB-TV, “I feel like the Taser and the camera are the two most effective tools that I have. Do what you're supposed to do, or you get what's coming to you.”

  • Waiter who refused service to customer becomes Web hero

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Usually, when a waiter refuses to serve someone at a restaurant, customers complain. In this case, customers cheered.

    The waiter in question, Michael Garcia, has been receiving goodwill and friend requests on the restaurant’s Facebook page since word spread that he stood up for a child with special needs.

    Garcia, who works at the Houston restaurant Laurenzo's, was waiting on a family, regulars with a 5-year-old child, Milo, who has Down syndrome. The server said that another family at the restaurant commented on Milo’s behavior, which Garcia described as “talking and making little noises." Garcia moved the complaining family to another table, but they were still unhappy. "Special needs children need to be special somewhere else," the father reportedly said.

    It didn't take long for the story to get out. The eatery’s Facebook page has received praise from people in Texas and beyond.

    Facebook user Tisha Baker wrote, "Thank you so much for speaking up when most just turn away."

    Watch the interview on Fox News here:

  • FBI complies with FOIA request with blacked-out pages

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    The FBI and the American Civil Liberties Union seem to have very different interpretations of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

    As surfaced by the website Arstechnica, the FBI recently complied with a request from the civil rights organization—sort of.

    The ACLU had filed the FOIA request back in July. (It had first heard of the memos when they were mentioned publicly by an FBI official during a panel discussion at the University of San Francisco earlier in the year.) The request asked for two memos that outline how the FBI interprets the Supreme Court decision blocking law enforcement from using GPS to track a suspect’s car without a warrant.

    As the ACLU reported, the organization has just received a response—almost all of it blacked out.

    The ACLU says that it will next ask the courts to force the Department of Justice to release the memos without all the redactions.

  • Costa Concordia captain says he has no regrets

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    The captain of the Costa Concordia, which ran aground a year ago leaving 32 dead, understands why people “hate” him, but said he has no regrets.

    The cruise ship carrying vacationers hit the rocks off the Italian island Giglio when it went off its preprogrammed course so that islanders could get a better view of the vessel.

    In an interview with NBC News, the captain, Francesco Schettino, who is accused of multiple manslaughters and wrecking and abandoning ship (he reportedly left the ship before it had been emptied of passengers), said he was misunderstood.

    “Everybody believes that I was escaping from the sinking ship,” he said. However, Schettino recalled that he “tried to make an effort to make sure that I was the last one to leave the ship—from the sinking side."

    The captain, currently in Naples, declined to attend the memorials held to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the tragedy.

  • Land ho: New island emerges off German coast

    Claudine Zap at The Lookout 3 yrs ago

    Germany has sprouted an island. The hook-shaped land is 16 miles off the coast of Germany, and it is 34 acres long. Dubbed Norderoogsand, the island, which lies in the German North Sea coast, has already become the home to more than 50 plant species and a variety of sea birds.

    Amazingly, 10 years ago, the island didn’t exist. The speed with which it went from sand bar to land mass is surprising scientists.

    “The fact that in just a few years a new island is formed is very impressive," local conservationist Detlef Hansen, who works at nearby Wadden Sea National Park, told the Telegraph. He added, "For conservationists, this is anything but ordinary."

    The plucky island is bolstered against winds thanks to its 13-foot-high dunes and grasses that help it combat erosion. It was also helped by its location near other islands that buffered it from winter storms and the fact that few storm surges have appeared there in the past decade.