Student Turns Body Into
Billboard as the Shirtless Guy
Jacob Authier is a member of the new media, or make that half-nude media. A little more than a year ago, the formidably muscled film major decided to junk his shirt and turn himself into the Shirtless Guy, renting out space on his body for student political campaigns and birthday wishes for $1 a shot.
With his wraparound sunglasses and nipples daubed black, the junior has become a sensation at the normally staid confines of Chapman University, a small private university in southern California.
Authier's daily doings have inspired the school's second most popular online group -- the Club Dedicated to the Fellow Without a Shirt, according to the Los Angeles Times. At Chapman, it ranks behind only the George Bush Is Not My Homeboy club in popularity.
Authier, 20, told the Times that while growing up, he rarely wore shirts indoors because he didn't like the feeling. For St. Patrick's Day, he painted his nipples emerald green. And on Valentine's Day, a friend used a pocketknife to etch a heart on his chest and wings on his back. That got him an audience with the dean of students. "He just wanted to make sure I was okay," Authier said.
-- John Pomfret
Unrepentant Mink Liberator
Sentenced to Two Years in the Pen
The mink fled, and so did Peter Daniel Young.
Young and a friend sprung an estimated 8,000 future mink coat components from farms in Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota in 1997, then disappeared. Caught shoplifting CDs from a California Starbucks, Young pleaded guilty to a crime called "animal enterprise terrorism" and faced sentencing earlier this month in Madison, Wis.
Repentant does not describe his attitude.
"It was a pleasure to have visited your farms," Young, 28, told the farmers in the courtroom, ". . . and I wish I could have put more of you in bankruptcy." Cheered by 50 supporters who consider him a legend, he called his crime "an act of conscience" and urged others to raid more mink farms.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Stephen Crocker, in sentencing him to two years in prison and ordering him to pay $254,840 to the farmers, said Young "clearly relishes his role as a martyr for his cause." If it was truly civil disobedience, the judge said, Young would not have fled after being indicted for cutting fences in the Midwest.
"You take your lumps," he said.
"He terrorized honest people," Crocker said, ". . . and I'm sure the blogs will be humming tonight about it, but he incited people to break the law, and if caught he'd do it again."
-- Peter Slevin
New Jersey Bypasses the Bland
In Search for New State Slogan
They did ask for it after all. New Jersey went on the hunt for a new state slogan. So what did folks have to say about the home of Sinatra, the Boss and baseball?
"New Jersey: You Got a Problem With That?" suggested actors Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, when they ran into the Garden State's governor at a movie premiere, according to the Star-Ledger.
Acting Gov. Richard J. Codey opened up the competition to the public after rejecting "New Jersey: We'll Win You Over," which was offered up by a state-hired marketing company.
Not enough oomph? Good or bad, New Jersey residents, talk show hosts and everyone else who took a shot had something to brag about. "Bada Bing! Choose New Jersey," someone said. Another offered, "Most of Our Elected Officials Have Not Been Indicted."
The winning slogan will be announced before Gov.-elect Jon S. Corzine takes office -- "Sold to Corzine!" -- unless officials descend into "A State of Confusion."
-- Michelle Garcia
Lawyers Harm Profession
With Pit Bull Ads, Court Finds
Lawyers may win cases by behaving like pit bulls. They just shouldn't go around advertising it.
The Florida Supreme Court has opined that two Fort Lauderdale attorneys who advertised their services on television with a threatening image of a pit bull -- their toll-free number is 800-PIT-BULL -- should be reprimanded.
The tactics "demean all lawyers and thereby harm both the legal profession and the public's trust and confidence in our system of justice,'' the court ruled, adding that if the spot were allowed to stand, other lawyers might use "sharks, wolves, crocodiles and piranhas'' to advertise.
The attorneys, Marc Chandler and John Pape, have argued that they used the dogs as a symbol of tenacity and commitment. Chandler said although the ruling frowned on the pit bull advertising, they probably would keep the phone number. He was skeptical of the other possibilities.
"You think we should change it to 1 800 poodle? Or 1 800 Chihuahua?" he asked. "How about 1 800 neutered dog or 1 800 big cash?"
-- Peter Whoriskey