World in brief: Nov. 3, 2010

The world’s largest pumpkin was unveiled at the Stillwater Harvest Fest in Minnesota and was awarded the Guinness World Record. The monstrosity weighed in at 1,810 pounds, and has a circumference of more than 15 feet – beating the previous record by approximately 85 pounds. Grower Chris Stevens of Wisconsin credits his success to a secret recipe of “a meticulous mixture of sunshine, rain, cow manure, fish emulsion and seaweed.”

Health Officials have announced a mass outbreak of polio in Africa early this week, reporting over 50 collective cases from different nations. The World Health Organization (WHO) has taken action, announcing a continent-wide vaccination campaign, in order to prevent the spread of the highly infectious and fatal disease. In order to increase efficiency the operation will hit 15 central African countries. WHO officials hope to have the same success as previous campaigns, which decreased outbreaks by an astonishing 98 per cent in Nigeria and neighbouring nations.

Mentawai Island inhabitants were hit hardest by a tsunami last Monday, claiming upwards of 400 lives and countless injuries. Officials fear that hundreds missing will never be found as they have been swepted out to sea. However, amidst the devastation, a ten-year-old child managed to discover an orphaned infant in a clump of trees. The two-month-old child managed to survive raging winds and torrential rain for three days completely alone. Left with minor cuts and bruises, the baby is now being treated in a local hospital, and internationally dubbed the “Tsunami Miracle Baby.”

MILAN, Italy
A 35 year old woman, Lea Garofalo, was abducted, interrogated and later murdered for providing anti-mafia information to authorities. According to Italian police reports the abductors were Garofalo’s own family members. Her former partner is said to be behind the entire murder – premeditated revenge for her mafia informant behaviour. The woman was taken to a field neighbouring Milan, and dissolved in over fifty litres of acid by a group of abductors. Recent action has resulted in two arrests, while her former partner faced an arrest warrant while already in jail.

LONDON, England
A bakery in Sussex has reached celebrity status for serving up graphic Halloween inspired treats. Owner Emma Thomas, self proclaimed “Miss Cakehead”, works closely with artists to design the treats, all of which are adult themed and Halloween related. They included such goodies as eyeball frosted cupcakes, severed chocolate fingers and a Jack the Ripper themed cake. This “no limits” attitude makes for an interesting business approach, attracting customers from all over the country.

–Compiled by Leeza Pece