daily: message in a bottle
Wednesday, 09 April 2014

The Daily: April 9

We scour the news so you don't have to

Written by Sarah Pratley
101-year-old message in a bottle reveals family's history
A 101-year-old message in a bottle has been returned to the sender's granddaughter. The bottle was found by a fisherman, Konrad Fischer, in the Baltic Sea off the northern city of Kiel. It is said to have been in the water for 101 years, and thought to be the world's oldest message in a bottle. It has now been presented to the sender, Richard Platz's, granddaughter, Angela Erdmann - a 62-year-old Berlin resident. Platz died six years before she was born, in 1946. Erdmann has said, "I knew very little about my grandfather, but I found out that he was a writer who was very open minded, believed in freedom and that everyone should respect each other. He did a lot for the young and later travelled with his wife and two daughters. It was wonderful because I could see where my roots came from".

JK Rowling should make way for new, young talent
Author Lynn Shepherd has criticised JK Rowling's move into adult fiction in a piece for the Huffington Post. Shepherd has argued that "Rowling has no need of either the shelf space or the column inches, but other writers desperately do", and that by writing The Casual Vacancy, she has made it harder for aspiring authors to flourish. However, Shepherd has been met with much criticism. Nathan Scalia for Lit Reactor says it is a "ridiculous" argument. Author Larry Correia has argued "JK Rowling making a dollar does not take a dollar out of your pocket. That is loser talk. Quite the contrary, she has grown our market, and brought more readers into genre fiction, so she's actually put dollars IN your pocket". Shepherd's author Amazon page is now seeing her books receive one star reviews from furious Harry Potter fans.

Bomb dog saved by soldier from being put down
Vidar, a four-year-old Belgian Malinois bomb-hunting dog, has been saved from being put down by army medic, Angie McDonnell. Vidar was trained to find enemy weapons, and successfully sniffed out explosives hidden by the enemy against British troops, allowing experts to disable them safely. However, after he started to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder and failing eyesight, making him too nervous to complete his job, Vidar was threatened with being put down. Angie McDonnell, a paramedic, then made it her mission to find Vidar and bring him back to south Wales for his retirement, after they'd become close at Camp Bastion. McDonnell said, "He saved my life so it's only fair that I did what I could to save his". She added, "I would have done anything to make sure he had a loving home".

$3.7m auctioned painting thrown away by cleaners
Chinese artist, Cui Ruzhuo's, painting Snowy Mountain has been reported as missing after it was auctioned on Monday. Auctioneers Poly Auction stated it was missing on Tuesday afternoon, having been sold for HK$28.8M ($3.7 million) the day before. Media reports have suggested that the cleaners of the Grand Hyatt hotel, the auction's venue, accidently threw it away. Police have checked the hotel's CCTV footage, which shows the cleaners moving the painting. Gladis Young, director of communications at the Grand Hyatt hotel, has denied that the cleaners were involved. Young claimed that normally external staff is hired by the event's organisers to deal with security and handling valuable goods.

Ironic flooding cancels Noah screening
Flooding last week saw the cancellation of the first Noah screening at a cinema. Last Friday, the first screening of the new movie was cancelled after excess water was found in Exeter Vue. The low level flooding was discovered by staff just after 7am, causing the cinema to be shut until 2pm and thereby cancelling the 12.15pm Noah screening. Vue's spokesperson said "We can confirm that there was flooding at Vue Exeter on Friday 4 April due to a fault with an ice machine". The irony was not lost on the disappointed cinemagoers, as one tweeted "#Irony. The day Noah was realised Exeter Vue was flooded overnight".


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