Editor's Note: Hundreds of Ann Landers' loyal readers have requested that newspapers continue to publish her columns. These letters originally appeared in 1999.
Dear Ann Landers: I recently came across this newspaper clipping from The Ledger in Lakeland, Fla., which I had saved from a few years back. I kept it to show to friends because I thought it was hilarious. I'm hoping you will agree and print it as one of your "unusual lawsuit" letters. The story originally appeared in La Stampa and La Repubblica newspapers in Italy, but you don't have to be Italian to appreciate it. — Snowbird from Ithaca, N.Y.
Dear Snowbird: Thanks for my laugh of the day. A while back, I wrote, "In America, the land of the brave and home of the free, anybody can sue anybody for anything." Well, it looks like the same can be said of some countries outside of the United States. Here's the story:
It seems a couple of car-crossed lovers are suing for damages, claiming an unplanned pregnancy resulted from an automobile accident in Naples' "love park." The lawsuit is the result of an accident involving a medium-sized Regata and a small Panda car. The accident occurred in a park that nightly attracts dozens of lovers who make love in their cars.
The young man claimed he and his girlfriend were engaged in amorous activity in their small car when the larger car hit them from behind. The impact momentarily caused them to lose control, resulting in the pregnancy.
Meanwhile, dear readers, since we are on the subject of strange happenings, how do you like this one sent in by Betty of Wood River, Ill.:
A 58-year-old Tallahassee, Fla., woman was released from prison after serving one year for manslaughter. She was sentenced in 1981 to eight years in prison for fatally shooting her boyfriend. But because of a bureaucratic mix-up, no one arrived to take her away. She continued to live quietly at home and never hid from the law.
Finally, a tip led prison officials to the forgotten convict's door in May 1997, and the Florida woman began serving time. It seems the letter notifying her that she would be going to jail went to the wrong address. So, for the next 16 years, she raised her children, helped raise her grandchildren, went to church and spent many hours sitting on her front porch. Her sentence was commuted by the state clemency board after her lawyer argued successfully that she had essentially served probation at home.
Drugs are everywhere. They're easy to get, easy to use and even easier to get hooked on. If you have questions about drugs, you need Ann Landers' booklet, "The Lowdown on Dope." Send a self-addressed, long, business-sized envelope and a check or money order for $5 (this includes postage and handling) to: Lowdown, c/o Ann Landers, c/o Creators Syndicate, 737 3rd Street, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254. To find out more about Ann Landers and read her past columns, visit the Creators Syndicate webpage at www.creators.com.