An ad in Sunday's Register pictured a baby monkey that was "free to a good home," perched on the shoulder of a smiling young man.
Sorry folks -- the monkey's not available, and the man is already taken.
If you called to find out how you could make that monkey your own, you're not alone.
Turns out, the ad was a practical joke for a Sandusky man's 40th birthday.
Rich Finneran's twin sisters sent in a high school photo of him at 17 and superimposed a monkey on his shoulder. They posted his cell phone number with the ad.
"Growing up, I was always the practical jokester of the family," said Finneran, who celebrated his birthday May 9. "They had this planned for a while."
More than 40 people called him about the monkey, starting at 6:45 a.m. -- long before he noticed the ad in the paper.
The calls came from as far away as Arizona, he said.
After being inundated with calls, Finneran changed his automated voice mail to direct callers to his sister Jennifer, who placed the ad.
Jennifer still lives in the area, and Jessica lives in New Jersey. Both are 37, which gives Rich plenty of time to plan his comeback for their milestone birthday.
-- Annie Zelm
'We Are LeBron' video begs Cavs star to stay
Yes, that really is Gov. Ted Strickland, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown and various local TV and radio personalities, performing in a music video that begs Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James to stay in Cleveland.
The parody video at tinyurl.com/2fhpezl is based on "We Are the World," the charity tune that featured a gaggle of stars.
A few Cleveland celebrities slipped through the net.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Pulitzer-prize winning columnist, Connie Schultz, was supposed to sing but had a schedule conflict. She helped the cause instead by posting a link to the video on Facebook.
-- Tom Jackson
A dead horse? Shoot it, just to be sure
Nothing brings out the democratic spirit like the phrase "eminent domain."
This was true in Vermilion recently, when owners of riverfront property stopped short of breaking out the pitchforks and torches after the state tried to slap a "scenic river" label on Vermilion River.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources said the "scenic" designation would allow the state to bolster programs to keep the river clean, but property owners wanted nothing to do with the proposal. At one Vermilion Council meeting, dozens of residents insisted the scenic-river designation would, at the very least, allow ODNR to decide how and when private property could be used. At the worst, residents said, ODNR could seize property from them.
ODNR insisted it wasn't after anyone's land, but in the end the agency relented, walking away from the issue as the opposition grew too strong.
Even local elected officials hopped on to the anti-scenic-river bandwagon, rescinding years-old resolutions that had supported the scenic river designation.
Days after ODNR canceled its plans, Erie County Commissioners were still getting phone calls from Vermilion residents who begged them to rescind their resolution from 2007, which had supported ODNR's plans for Vermilion River.
"I tried to tell them that horse died a week ago," commissioner Bill Monaghan said.
Even so, he and commissioners Pat Shenigo and Tom Ferrell felt obligated to rescind the resolution.
"Apparently the residents thought (the issue) needed a few more bullets in it," Monaghan said. "So we put a few more bullets in it."
-- Shawn Foucher