Weird Wild Stuff #3

March 21, 2022
2 mins read

Here we are, not even three full months into the year yet, and Florida Man already approaches his mid-season form. And he is NOT alone, as you’ll soon see. Let’s begin with our colleagues at Orlando Weekly, who delivered the good word about Publix, which recently cut ties with a company called Chaokoh, who used to be their plug for coconut milk—well, one of them; you can never have too many connections for coconut milk. What caused the cancelation? Monkey slaves.

A PETA operation in Thailand two years ago uncovered evidence that monkeys were being chained to used tires and forced to harvest fallen coconuts. Worse, sources even alleged that the monkeys were being tortured if they resisted. Unfortunately, Publix waited to move until after Costco, Target, Walgreens and Walmart had already done so, but still they moved pretty quick. One thing that Floridians can take pride in is knowing that, no matter how crazy it can get here, almost everyone is generally very much opposed to animal abuse in most forms, and it’s good to see them doing the right thing, because they don’t always do. They helped monkeys, and that’s the important thing. That’s the only thing that matters, ever.

Normally, if the phrase “monkey slaves” pops up on my timeline, I’m likely to save that item for the end, because the visual is really hard to top. But I think we can this month, starting over in Denver, where one or more unknown fools made the mistake of their lives when they robbed a truck in broad daylight. All they got was a random spare dolly and a big cardboard box. What was in the box, you ask? Morgan Freeman won’t tell you, but I will: human heads, which, for the record, were being transported to a medical research facility. Organ theft and trafficking is a thing, but there’s not much black market value in the head, although corneas can allegedly command a few thousand dollars on the black market. The box was stamped “Science Care,” so maybe someone thought they were pills or pricey supplements. Clearly, the thieves didn’t bother to check their haul, but that unboxing video would have to be demonetized.

Speaking of social media, the jails and cemeteries of America are full of unfortunate souls whose undoing happened because of social media. Whether it’s rappers giving away their location while agitating the opps on IG Live or seditionists posting selfies at the Jan. 6 uprising, our culture of full immersion creates blind spots in our thinking and encourages poor decision making. That brings us to Detroit and a would-be influencer whose notoriety backfired after he was arrested for a series of armed robberies of various retailers in the city. The police benefited bigly from the suspect’s own TikTok page, which allegedly contained multiple videos of him dancing while wearing the same distinctive Nikes worn during the robberies. He also wore skeleton-print gloves and multicolored hair twists. Obviously, we won’t share his name, because we don’t want to encourage this type of behavior, and everyone is innocent until proven guilty. (The guy was also wearing a black backpack with pink flowers, which I’m sure they’ll find amusing in jail.) Usually, people chase clout; in this case, the clout chased him.

OK, we’ve all had a good laugh here (maybe), but let’s get serious for just a moment before we wrap up this month’s installment. There’s a potential situation developing that you and your loved ones may need to watch out for later this year, according to Scientific American: flying spiders. Now hold on, relax—they can’t actually fly. It’s more like they craft parachute-like gimmicks with their web material and use them to catch a breeze and glide. In 2014, a few got into a shipping container in Asia that was unloaded north of Atlanta. Since then, millions of the non-flying flying spiders have taken up residence in the Peach Tree State (like Georgia doesn’t have enough problems lately), and scientists believe they will soon invade the East Coast and eventually across the continental U.S. If any do show up in Florida, they will be easy to spot, since they’re about three inches long. Have a great day!

Shelton Hull has been writing for Folio Weekly since 1997, but his resume goes back even further. He has written for almost every newspaper, magazine and zine in Northeast Florida, as well as publications like Orlando Weekly, Narrow GNV, Creative Loafing Tampa, Charleston City Paper, Ink19 and The Atlantic.

He currently writes the "Folio Weed" column, which he created in 2018; he remains one of the widest-read and most influential cannabis writers in the world today. He also compiles material for "Weird Wild Stuff" column, and he previously wrote the legendary "Money Jungle" column for Folio Weekly from 1999 to 2009.

He is a regular contributor to "First Coast Connect" on WJCT, as well as the Jacksonville Music Experience. He is a co-host of "The Contrast Project" and the "Bold City Civics" podcast. He is also a co-founder of the record label Bold City Music Productions. He can be reached at

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