AH THE perils of modern life.
There was gorgeous, pouting Israeli model and actress Orit Fox cavorting for the cameras with a large snake.
Not surprisingly, given the copious amount of bare bosom on display, the snake, which had endured enough of being manipulated and licked and fondled, did what any self-respecting snake would do and latched on, with fatal consequences.
Little did the poor creature know that what looked like human flesh was in fact, a silicon implant.
Ms Fox was released from hospital after a tetanus shot and a few hours of ogling by junior doctors. The snake, tragically, died of silicon poisoning. Shouldn't she be charged with animal cruelty or discharging an offensive weapon? Or something.
On a more cheerful note we can report that Edward the faithful guide dog is enjoying a peaceful retirement, with a guide dog of his own.
After six years of outstanding service to his blind owner, Graham Waspe, Edward the labrador developed such severe glaucoma that vets had no choice but to remove his eyes.
His successor, Opal, now not only helps his owner carry out everyday tasks, but also guides Edward.
Now if that's not brought a tear to your eye, maybe you think of dogs as a commodity rather than man's best friend and companion.
In that case you'll be impressed by the earning power of Big Splash, an 11-month-old tibetan mastiff pup which was this week sold for $1.6 million, making it the world's most expensive pooch ever.
A Chinese millionaire coal baron bought the handsome, bright red hound.
Tibetan mastiffs are described as huge, fierce guard dogs bred to protect nomad camps. I suspect Big Splash won't be guarding anything, but will be watched over closely by his new owner's security squad.
And finally, for those of a religious bent and to prove that Alternative Universe is not obsessed by shaggy dog stories, let's hear it for Jay Wilson, the American who has elected to give up something important for Lent...sobriety.
Mr Wilson has pledged to show his love for the Lord by subsisting on nothing but beer – and the occasional sip of water – for 46 days.
He's brewed his own 6.7% alcohol beer and has calculated that four 12-ounce servings a day will give him 1200 calories, enough to keep body and soul together. God bless Mr Wilson. Cheers.
Alternative Universe is a weekly humour column by Adrian Taylor.
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