The James Weird Awards

The James Weird Awards: This Week’s Hard-to-Swallow Restaurant News

If you enjoyed the strange, twisted tales of a chef caught tonguing turtles, an Olive Garden patron attacking a man during his son’s birthday party (as well as a McDonald’s customer freaking out over McNuggets), and of course a woman shredding a reservation book because she wasn’t seated quickly enough, then you’re really going to like our new recurring feature: The James Weird Awards. The weirdest of this week’s weird restaurant news, straight ahead.

• A 21-year-old man dressed in a child-size banana costume was arrested in Port Angeles, Washington, after allegedly exposing himself to an employee at a local Wendy’s. When police arrived on the scene, the banana man was already in his car but exited with a shotgun in his hand and started yelling “something or other about white supremacy,” according to police. [Newsfeed/Time]

• A homeless man walked into a Spokane, Washington, Arby’s bathroom on Tuesday night, and when he came out the place was empty and closed, or so he told police. He microwaved some cheese sandwiches before being discovered and subsequently locked inside the restaurant by a night janitor. When he tried to flee through a side door in an Arby’s coat and hat, police caught and arrested him. He was charged with burglary and — shockingly — possession of methamphetamine. [Spokesman-Review]

• A voyeuristic Sarasota, Florida, restaurant owner was arrested for videotaping female employees while they changed in an employee dressing room. [ABC 7 Florida]

• The executive chef of Burlington, Massachusetts, Capital Grille’s love of radio-controlled cars, coupled with his stupidity, cost him his job. The guy was fired after police discovered that he stole credit cards from diners to buy the toy cars at a hobby shop. [Salem News]

• Buffalo police arrested a man after hearing a cat meowing from the trunk of the man’s car during a traffic stop. They discovered the unfortunate feline “marinating” in oil and chile peppers within a cage. The cat was cleaned up and taken in by the local SPCA. [Crime Scene/WP]

• A Baltimore man, described by police as a “prolific petty criminal,” got out of paying restaurant bills by faking seizures. He gets points for creativity, but shouldn’t city restaurant owners have caught on a little sooner? The guy has 80 arrests and 40 convictions since 1985, the majority of which are for theft-of-service crimes. [Baltimore Sun]

• After being asked to leave a Mexican restaurant in Silicon Valley, a man pulled out a handgun and fired one shot into the floor. He fled on foot, and was caught and arrested by police, who found the gun, ammunition, and — again, shockingly — methamphetamine in his pockets. [Mercury News]

• A man was arrested in Greensboro, North Carolina, for breaking into a Red Lobster in the early morning hours and trashing the restaurant after making himself a shrimp pizza and eating some cake. At least he left the lobster tank intact. [WXII 12]

• A Milton Mills, New Hampshire, man plead guilty to indecent assault and resisting arrest charges stemming from a July incident in which he led police on a nude chase through town. The man, who previously worked at a local restaurant, said he was protesting the work conditions at the establishment by visiting it in the buff. Right. [Portsmouth Herald]

The James Weird Awards: This Week’s Hard-to-Swallow Restaurant News