Posts tagged with "NBC-TV"

Five-year-old in a Chucky costume terrorizes unsuspecting Alabama neighborhood

July 28, 2022

“Hi, I’m Chucky. Wanna play?” There are some things in life that require a double take. For Kendra Walden, it was seeing what appeared to be a Chucky doll come to life walking down the street in her Alabama neighborhood.

The 31-year-old, who works in Albertville, Alabama, was in a car with two other women when she first spotted a life-sized version of the murderous doll from the 1988 horror film, Child’s Play.

“I was remodeling a house in the area and me and some of my employees were headed home from that house,” Walden told Today Parents—a segment of the Today morning show on NBC-TV.

Walden said she thought she was hallucinating. “When we got closer to him we saw that it was real,” she said. “It scared the heck out of us.”

Walden told Today that everyone in the car was “screaming like little kids.”

“My brother Zack, who is a Marine, was working on this house the day before,” Walden said. “His biggest fear in the entire world is Chucky so he would have died on the spot.”

Walden said her employee driving the car, Alexis Atchley, turned around so everyone could get a closer look.

“When we circled back around [the boy] had his mask off, but quickly popped it back on and crossed the street after we passed,” Walden told Today. “We turned around again and that’s when we got the photos.”

Walden uploaded three photos to her Facebook page of the encounter.

Dear Parents of the little boy in the chucky costume in Pinson,” Walden captioned the photos. “GET YOUR KID….I almost had a heart attack.”

Walden said her social post, which has garnered more than 51,000 likes and 105,000 shares, was “just for fun” and she did not expect it to go viral.

“At first it was private and then a friend asked to make it public and after that it’s been crazy,” she said. “I can rarely check my notifications because so many are on the Chucky post. I’ve had so many people reach out about people sharing it and such.”

Research contact: @TODAYshow

Georgia prosecutor requests special grand jury in Trump election interference probe

January 24, 2022

A Georgia prosecutor requested a special grand jury on Thursday, January 20, to aid her investigation into possible 2020 election interference by former President Donald Trump and others, reports NBC News.

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis sent a letter, obtained by NBC News, to Christopher Brasher, the chief judge of the Fulton County Superior Court, asking for a special grand jury to investigate any “coordinated attempts to unlawfully alter the outcome of the 2020 elections in this state.”

A significant number of witnesses have refused to cooperate without subpoenas requiring their testimony, Willis wrote. A special grand jury would have the power to subpoena witnesses.

Willis cited an NBC-TV “Meet the Press” interview in which Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said he would gladly respond to a grand jury summons.

Willis has declined to speak about the specifics of her investigation. In an interview with The Associated Press this month, she confirmed that the scope of the probe includes—but is not limited to:

  • A phone call between Trump and Raffensperger on January 2, 2021;
  • A phone call between Raffensperger and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) in November 2020;
  • The abrupt resignation of the U.S. attorney in Atlanta on January 4, 2021; and
  • Comments made during legislative committee hearings about the election in December 2020.

Willis said the special grand jury is needed because it could serve a term longer than a normal grand jury term. It would also be able to concentrate on this investigation alone, allowing it to focus on the complex facts and circumstances. And having a special grand jury would mean that the regular seated grand jury would not have to deal with this investigation in addition to its regular duties, she wrote.

In a statement, Trump defended his phone call with Raffensperger, saying it was “perfect.” He also reiterated false claims of election fraud, suggesting that the special grand jury should investigate his claims rather than the phone call.

A spokesperson for Willis said there would be no further statement beyond the contents of the letter at this time.

Research contact: @NBCNews

Man finds an ‘adorable’ frog in his romaine lettuce

December 28, 2021

Many folks would be somewhat alarmed to find a tiny frog frolicking in their lettuce, but upcoming recording artist Simon Curtis has decided to quite literally embrace the unexpected discovery, reports NBC-TV’s Today show.

Curtis recently told his Twitter followers that he’d spotted an adorable little frog in the bottom of a container of romaine lettuce that had been sitting in his fridge for a few days. It was too cold at the time (27 degrees F) to release him outside, so Curtis turned to his social media following for advice on what to do next.

“Back in the fridge until it warms up outside tomorrow? He’s hopping and clearly well and I bought this lettuce like four days ago …. He’s so adorable I really don’t want him to die,” he wrote.

The 35-year-old singer and songwriter opted to put a few pieces of lettuce back into the container, gave the frog a Mason jar lid full of water, and sprayed the whole container down with water. He also gave him a name: Tony.

Tony seems to be a gentle, happy little frog and he even lets Curtis hold him.

There’s one little problem, though — the frog is a bit of an escape artist and he’s been giving his new roommate a run for his money over the past few days.

Curtis bought Tony some food at a pet store to keep his belly full and confirmed with a biologist that he is a Green Treefrog.

Tony has had plenty of adventures in his new home in just a few days—including taking refuge among the shampoo bottles in Curtis’ shower.

He was so dehydrated and shriveled I was worried he’d died, but he’s now immersed in distilled water, cleaning himself, and coming back to life!!” Curtis wrote.

After that escapade, Curtis decided to purchase Tony a “proper terrarium” at PetSmart and he asked his followers if he should keep him as a pet or release him into the wild (the majority have voted to keep him so far).

Only time will tell if Tony becomes a permanent resident in Curtis’ home, but the recording artist has learned one important lesson from this whole saga: Always check the lettuce box before you buy it.

As it turns out, though, finding a tiny creature in your prepared greens isn’t as rare as you might think. In 2019, researcher conducted a review of a 15-year period to see just how many “wild vertebrates” had been found in prepackaged produce during that time.

According to Hughes and his team, news outlets reported on 40 unique incidents of people finding frogs, birds, or rodents in bagged/boxed greens between 2003 and 2018.

Amphibians and reptiles (tree frogs, toads, lizards and snakes) accounted for 30 of the 40 incidents and most of the critters were dead, with a few being alive. The rest were other types of animals (birds, rodents, and bats).

The tiny little frog that Curtis found in his lettuce is one of the lucky ones who made it out alive, and his new owner is thrilled that his followers are getting a kick out of Tony’s antics.

“The number of people being touched by Tony the tree frog’s story is really so moving to witness, and also a good reminder of just how much we all deserve kindness, no matter who, or what, we are,”

Research contact: @TODAYshow

Study: Coffee drinkers have reduced risk of liver disease

June 24, 2021

For decades it seemed researchers were bent on demonizing our beloved morning wake-up elixir, coffee. But the tide has turned and these days barely a month goes by without a new study touting the health benefits of java, NBC’s Today show reports..

The latest of these studies finds that regular coffee consumption—be it caffeinated, decaffeinated, or instant— appears to protect our livers from some really scary diseases, including cancer.

Using information from a database of nearly 500,000 adults based in the United Kingdom, researchers identified a  21% reduction in the risk for chronic liver disease overall, a 20% reduction in the risk of fatty liver disease,  and a 49% reduction in the risk of death from chronic liver disease, according to the report published in the journal,  BMC Public Health.

“Chronic liver disease is a huge problem for global health, especially low income countries where treatments are less available,” said the study’s lead author, Oliver Kennedy, a visiting research fellow at the University of Southampton in the U.K.

“Our finding that drinking coffee might protect against chronic liver disease is significant because coffee is cheap, widely available, safe, and well tolerated by most people,” Kennedy said in an email to Today. “It’s also reassuring that all coffee types seem to be protective, including decaffeinated coffee; which might be preferable for certain people, for example, pregnant women.”

It’s not yet known how coffee might protect the liver, Kennedy said. “Coffee contains many hundreds of compounds and we don’t know exactly which of these confers the protective effect,” he added. “It may be one compound or a combination. The fact that different types of coffee, which contain different chemical compounds, seem protective suggests it might be a combination.”

“It was difficult to assess the effects of very high levels of coffee consumption as the numbers of people drinking these amounts in our study were relatively small,” Kennedy said. “From the data available, there did seem to be a dose-response with larger amounts conferring more protection.”

“However,” Kennedy said, “there is likely a level beyond which increasing coffee consumption confers no further benefit. For example, in our study the benefit of five or more cups each day was generally smaller than for three or four cups each day, though still protective compared to no coffee.”

Research contact: @TODAYshow

Find a flourescent: The color of a child’s swimsuit could save his or her life

June 2, 2021

When it comes to children’s swimwear, white is the worst color choice you could possibly make—even after Memorial Day has come and gone—NBC-TV’s Today show reports.

In a recent test study, ALIVE Solutions, a safety and first aid consultancy based in California, recently put swimsuit colors to the test to judge their visibility in both pools and open water.

The researchers found that, while parents might choose their kids’ swimwear based on style or comfort, the most important factor is color. In fact, it could make all the difference in preventing drowning.

In pools, the top photo in each section of the grid shown on this page is the fabric as seen underwater; and the bottom photo is the fabric with surface agitation.

“Our bottom two colors are white and light blue (check out how they disappear) and our top choices would be neon pink and neon orange,” ALIVE Solutions said in its post. “Although the darker colors show up on a light pool bottom they can often be dismissed for a pile of leaves, dirt, or a shadow so [we] tend to stay away from those colors when possible.”

In a second study, submerging the suits in 18 inches of open water, neon yellow, green, and orange swimsuits performed b

Above, white and light blue are the least visible swimsuit colors underwater. (Photo source: ALIVE Solutions).

est. All other colors disappeared quickly.

“Having a background as an aquatic operator and lifeguard I know that certain colors are easier to see than others and also how challenging water can be to see through,” Natalie Livingston, co-founder of ALIVE Solutions, told TODAY Parents in an interview. “I started to notice this personally with what my kids wore in different water environment—and wanted to test the colors in different conditions so we could increase visibility as much as possible.”

Breanna Smith Powderly, a former lead lifeguard at Hersheypark in Pennsylvanai, which sees more than 3 million visitors per year, agreed.

“Kids wearing bright, fluorescent colors are much easier to keep track of,” she told TODAY. “However, the lifeguard training that most water parks go through teaches the 10/20 rule—basically, 10 seconds to thoroughly scan your zone and 20 seconds to reach the person in distress — so even a child in [the] harder-to-see colors should be kept track of by a good lifeguard.”

Even veteran parents said they found the results helpful.

“It’s definitely going to affect how I shop for my kids’ swimsuits in the future,” Andrea Ament, a California mom of three, told TODAY. “I won’t be shopping for the cutest designs anymore, but rather the safest colors.”

Research contact: @TODAYshow

This crumpled, derelict Jaguar sold for six times its value

June 2, 2021

For some collectors, the fun is buying a car they even can’t drive—yet. Indeed, Bloomberg reports, according to Jay Leno, some cars are so special that even if you find the scattered pieces of one, you should buy it.

And he should know: In the years since his final hosting gig on The Tonight Show, the 71-year-old car enthusiast has presented the popular Jay Leno’s Garage on NBC and YouTube and has grown what is one of the most valuable and diverse car collections in the world.

Indeed, that philosophy certainly applied to a 1960 Jaguar XK150 S that sold for $127,552 in a Bonhams auction on May 22. The hammer price on the crumpled, patina-riddled drophead coupe was six times over the sale estimate.

“The enthusiast market is in rude health at present,” Rob Hubbard, the head of Bonhams MPH—a car auctioneer in Bicester Village, Oxfordshire, England—told Bloomberg in what the business publication calls “the understatement of the month.” 

Sales of classic and collectable cars across the world have returned healthy numbers in recent weeks, with Bonhams and RM Sotheby’s selling more than $60 million worth of old cars in a single weekend in Florida. Dozens of the six- and seven-figure cars at the Amelia Island auctions sold for far more than even the high side of their estimated values.

According to Bloomberg, the “barn find” is a segment of car collecting that has exploded in the past year, with garages and restoration shops bulging at the seams with businesses. The term “barn find” applies to any variety of derelict vehicles that have been left forgotten for decades; they come in various states of disrepair—from rusted-out bodies and frames to non-existent or half-missing components like seats, brakes, headlights, wheels, and even engines. Most are riddled with cracked paint…and worse. Rodents living in the underbody, inhabited by stray cats, and covered in droppings from birds and bats are all expected scenarios. At least one car is rumored to be protected by a malicious ghost.

Amid Covid-19 fears, “car guys” have more time than ever to tinker in the shop or send their heretofore tabled restoration projects to the shop. But there must be more than bullish pandemic-pent-up buyers to make a smashed car worthy of such a high price. The Jaguar model itself is special enough to merit barn-find project status, even if the sum of its auction-price and the amount of money spent on restoring it might exceed the resulting value. 

“To be honest, we don’t really know why that much money is being spent,” says John Mayhead, the manager of Hagerty’s automotive Intelligence in the UK. He noted that sometimes it’s about timing—the exact right buyer finds the exact perfect project, and the two just click.

Other times, it’s about becoming a part of history: “The story to it sometimes encourages buyers to pay over the odds,” Mayhead says. “Owning a car like this is about continuing that story, and you want to be a part of it.”

Launched in 1957, Jaguar XK150s came in fixed-head or drophead coupe versions. They were known for their rounded, mod styling and progressive mechanics, like disc brakes (compared to the old-fashioned drum brakes) and powerful 3.8-liter engines that produced up to 265 horsepower engines. They could hit 60 mph in 7.3 seconds; top speeds exceeded 130 mph. All told, Jaguar made fewer than 3,000 Drophead coupes and even

In pristine form, the best Jaguar XK150 S is worth around $280,000, according to the Hagerty Price Guide. But prices vary widely. Most in good condition — the typical collector car— are worth closer to $163,000, Mayhead says. Last year, a pretty 1958 XK150 sold at auction for $176,000. In January, Bonhams sold a white one for $145,600. Meanwhile those in less-than-mint condition can be had for well under $100,000.

Owned by a single person since 1969, this XK50 in particular had a longstanding working history until “a wet day” in September 1996, according to the auction catalogue, when the owner of the car lost control and crashed it into a tree. The driver walked away unscathed; the car fared rather worse. It has remained inside a garage swathed in rust-riddled glory ever since. But it is actually good the car stayed squired away; it helped preserve what was left of it.

“Considering the date of the crash and being kept in dry storage, the car is still in a salvageable condition, and offers enormous potential as a rewarding project car,” the Bonhams auction catalogue notes. The dry storage is crucial, as it stalled the development of extreme rust, which can render a car nearly hopeless when it comes to repair.

Bonhams declined to share who bought the crashed Jag. But for those who buy such relics of time past, of course, the time and expense are all part of the fun.

Research contact: @Bloomberg

Kennedys invite all Americans to nominate COVID-19 frontline heroes for ‘Profile in Courage Award’

June 5, 2020

President John F. Kennedy’s daughter Caroline Kennedy, 62, and her son, Jack Schlossberg, 27, are asking for nominations from the American public of heroes who served their communities during the coronavirus crisis for this year’s Profile in Courage Award, NBC’s Today show reports.

Multiple nominees will be chosen as recipients of the prestigious award at a ceremony that will be held when it’s safe to have large gatherings in person, according to the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation.

“What happened this year is we realized that we are seeing courage all around us in the in the extraordinary demonstration of people putting their own lives at risk to help the rest of us stay safe and healthy,” Kennedy told Savannah Guthrie of Today.

People can submit stories about those who have demonstrated courage during the pandemic on the JFK Library website or on social media using the hashtag #COVIDCourage. Nominations will be accepted through the end of August and the recipients, who are chosen by a committee, will be announced in the fall.

Schlossberg explained on Today that he nominated his friend Paul Wasserman on Instagram for his work at Fire Station 410 in Fairfax, Virginia, where he serves as an emergency medical technician in an area that has been hard hit by the coronavirus.

“At the center of VA’s outbreak, these people have gone above and beyond to meet the moment,” Schlossberg wrote on Instagram. “In addition to working full time at the DoD, Paul’s volunteering as an EMT on long overnight and weekend shifts to help the career staff during the pandemic, who he says are the real heroes.”

Kennedy and Schlossberg believe people like Wasserman embody the spirit reflected by previous recipients of the Profiles in Courage award.

The award was created 31 years ago to honor President Kennedy’s birthday on May 29 and his commitment to public service. It’s named in honor of his famous 1957 book, “Profiles in Courage,” which tells the stories of eight U.S. senators who took principled stands for unpopular positions at the risk of their careers.

Former recipients of the award include Presidents Barack Obama, George H.W. Bush and Gerald Ford; and members of Congress-among them, John McCain, Gabrielle Giffords and John Lewis. Last year’s recipient was Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

Research contact: @TODAYshow

Rude awakening: Find out the story behind this amazingly grumpy baby photo

February 27, 2020

They are calling it “the scowl seen ‘round the world.” A photo from Brazil has gone viral for catching the expression of a newborn baby girl who appears to angrily stare down the doctor who delivered her by C-section.

Photographer Rodrigo Kunstmann, who snapped the now-famous picture of Isabela Pereira de Jesus, said her family burst out laughing when he showed them the image.

“They were like, ‘This could be an internet meme!’” Kunstmann, 32, told TODAY Parents on NBC-TV in the United States through a translator. “Everybody thought it was funny.”

But don’t be fooled by Isabela’s expression. Kunstmann has been in touch with her parents and they insist she has an easy, gentle disposition.

“She’s very sweet,” Kunstmann revealed. “The picture was just a moment.”

Still, it’s fun to imagine what was going through Isabela’s mind when she made her entrance into the world.

“Do NOT disturb my sleep for this! Lol,” wrote one person on Kunstmann’s Facebook page.

Added another, “She’s mad at the Dr. for taking her from her warm and dark and peaceful world into a bright room with a lot of people awing over her.”

“I remember when I first laid eyes on her after her birth, that was the face she was making,” Musa’s mom, Justine Tuhy, previously told TODAY Parents. “She was born via C-section at 41 weeks, so we assume she is annoyed she was evicted.”

Research contact: @TODAYshow