A Chinese court has ruled that 443 chickens were killed by – wait for it – a little boy’s screams. They decided that the most logical explanation for the death of the poultry was a stampede, caused by the child crying and screaming next to the hen house, and made the father of the boy pay the farmer for his losses.

K. I’m not saying that the boy’s screams didn’t cause those hens to stampede – I’m sure that’s entirely plausible.

What I am saying is that if I was a poultry farmer in Asia, and my flock had become infected with Avian flu, I wouldn’t tell anybody the birds had the flu – I’d come up with another story. Any story.