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A German Jog Is No Laughing Matter

April 06, 2006|Bob Rohwer | Times Staff Writer

Runners have been known to take their sport seriously, but some overseas enthusiasts apparently have no sense of humor.

After joggers complained that Joachim Bahrenfeld was disturbing the peace, a German court ordered the 54-year-old accountant to stop laughing out loud in the woods.

"It's part of living for me, like eating, drinking and breathing," Bahrenfeld said, telling that he headed to the woods after work and on weekends for a good belly laugh. "I feel much better when I laugh. It's freeing and healthy."

Unfortunately, it's no longer a laughing matter: He faces a fine or six months in jail if he laughs out loud again.

Trivia time: Who was the first left-handed golfer to win the Masters, which begins its 70th tournament today at Augusta National Golf Club?

How sweet: Bjoernar Haakensmoen received more than five tons of maple syrup from grateful Canadian fans at a ceremony in Oslo for his act of sportsmanship during the Turin Olympics, the Associated Press reported.

The Norwegian cross-country ski coach had handed Sara Renner a spare ski pole after the Canadian broke one during the Nordic ski sprint relay final. Canada went on to win a silver medal, while the Norwegians finished fourth.

Trumped again: Donald Trump announced plans to build a $500-million golf resort on an 800-acre stretch of sand dunes in northeast Scotland, the Associated Press reported.

Wrote Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times: "Duffers who land in the rough will reportedly know it's a Trump course once they comb over all the hair grass."

Old jokes: Jay Leno, on a roll after Florida beat UCLA for the NCAA men's basketball championship: "They're calling this the greatest thing to happen to Florida since Medicare.

"That was Florida's first championship and they were going crazy down there. They were tipping over those Rascal electric scooters, setting golf carts on fire and raiding the early bird buffet at Carrows."

He's no Hulk Hogan: According to Reuters, airport police have caught seven Iranians trying to immigrate to Hungary by masquerading as members of the national wrestling team.

The young men were carrying sports bags and wrestling suits under the pretext of attending a Greco-Roman wrestling contest in Hungary, but they failed to get their stories straight.

"Among those arrested was a young man who weighed about 60 kilograms [132 pounds] and claimed to be the 120-kilograms contender," prosecutor Ataollah Roudgar said.

Looking back: On this date in 1987, Al Campanis made his infamous and insensitive racial remarks on the television show "Nightline," resulting in the Dodgers' dismissal of their long-time general manager.

Trivia answer: Mike Weir, in 2003.

And finally: Bud Geracie of the San Jose Mercury News, on the Oakland A's new right fielder:

"Let's wait another three months, at least, before declaring that everybody else was wrong about Milton Bradley."

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