1. Steven Seagal: Border Guard?
The left has Sean Penn running in to help with disaster-stricken Haiti, and the right has Steven Segal taking a job as a border enforcement officer. According to CNN, Segal joined a Hudspeth County’s Sheriff’s office to help catch illegal immigrants near the Texas-Mexican border. A spokesman for Hudspeth County called Seagall’s motives for seeking deputy status “pure,” dismissing speculation that Seagall was angling to turn the position into fodder for another law enforcement reality show (like the one he shot as a deputy in Jefferson County, Louisiana, called “Steven Seagal: Lawman,” which ended with Segall getting sued by an assistant for sexual harassment). Good for you, Steven Seagal. I hope your martial arts training and ponytail help you deal with the brutal drug cartels and desperate asylum seekers you’ll face in this, your new role, for which you are most certainly fully qualified.
2. Illegal Monkey Sneaks Into Pakistan
Who knew that animals count as illegal immigrants? Pakistan, according to the International Herald Tribune Express. After a monkey from India turned up in Cholistan, Bahawalpur district, he was detained and imprisoned in a Pakistani zoo. While the Indian monkey has co-operated with Pakistani immigration authorities so far, he has stopped short of revealing the purpose of his foreign incursion. For their part, Pakistani zoo employees have offered “Bobby” the monkey every amenity, including bananas and all of the other fruit offered to native Pakistani primates. Pundits are speculating that Bobby’s detention is partly in retaliation for India’s detention of a Pakistani pigeon accused of spying by Punjabi officials earlier last year.
3. Thirty-three Mexican Soldiers Accidentally Invade Texas
For the first time since Pearl Harbor, American soil was invaded in 2011 by foreign armed forces. Accidentally. During a routine patrol, 33 Mexican soldiers mistakenly crossed the Donna-Rio Bravo International Bridge, crows the Huffington Post. The Mexicans’ error was noted by American border agents who promptly turned the troops around and offered convenient and safe passage back to Mexico along the bridge they had so recently traversed. American officials revealed that mistaken border crossings are actually frequent occurrences, downplaying the shocking breach of American sovereignty and dismissing worries about the ease with which the foreign troops planted their feet on US soil.
4. Border Crossing Video Game Denied Entry
Speaking of the fraught US-Mexican border, an American company created a mobile app game called “Smuggle Truck,” the premise of which was that you are the driver of a ramshackle open-backed pick-up full of wretched humans who bounce out when you hit obstacles or fly over rough desert terrain (see image). The creators claimed that the game was a satire, aiming to draw light-hearted attention to the problem of trying to immigrate to the US. Shockingly, many Americans were not amused by the sight of tiny humanoid cartoon figures flying out of a rusty cartoon truck. Apple refused to sell the game in its app store, according to PCMag, and the genius game developers went back to the drawing board, coming up with the name “Snuggle Truck” and replacing the human figures with cute animals.
5. Innocent Laptop Shot By IDF
Israel’s security measures are widely known to be even stricter than those of the United States, so maybe this next story isn’t all that surprising: according to H’aaretz, in 2009, 21-year old American tourist Lily Sussman had her laptop shot three times when she was crossing into Israel from Egypt. After the guards at the heavily militarized border found some literature sympathetic to Palestinians in Sussman’s luggage and stamps from Arab countries like Lebanon and Jordan in her passport, they seized her belongings and made her wait while they “determined” whether or not her laptop was a dangerous explosive. It wasn’t. But just to be sure, they shot it three times before handing it back to her. If you’re going to travel to Israel, keep your opinions about their policies carefully concealed.
6. Are those 44 lizards in your pants or are you just happy to see me?
Have you ever thought to yourself, “I need a better souvenir to commemorate this vacation. I need something better than a keychain. I need 44 lizards”? Of course not. But one German visitor to New Zealand did in 2010, according to MSNBC. Hans Kubus, a rare animal collector, tried to board a flight home with dozens of rare geckos and skinks hidden in a small, hand-sewn pouch tucked inside his underwear. He was busted at the airport and fined $5000. New Zealand is serious about protecting its lizards. You are not welcome if you’re going to try to steal lizards from New Zealand.
This article was commissed by George Laczko. Originally published in 2013. Updated for 2019.
- "Steven Seagal hired to control U.S. Mexico Border" - the Marquee Blog, CNN
- "Steven Seagal sued for sexual harassment" - NewJersey.com
- "Swinging both sides: Trespassing Indian monkey caught in Bahawalpur" - International Herald Tribune
- "Fowl play: alleged spy pigeon held in India" - International Herald Tribune
- Mexico Invades U.S. Through Texas Accidentally, Has 33 Soldiers Returned" - Huffington Post
- "Apple Rejects Immigrant 'Smuggle Truck' Game" - PCMag
- "Snuggle Truck" - Snuggle Truck
- "Police shoot U.S. student's laptop upon entry to Israel" - Haaretz