A French coastal community has been finding bright orange parts of a novelty Garfield phone on the Iroise coast of Brittany since the 1980s.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on March 2, 2023. It has since been updated.
A French coastal community has been finding bright orange parts of a novelty Garfield phone on the Iroise coast of Brittany since the 1980s. Nobody knew where these phones came from but continued to collect them for 35 years, as reported by The Verge. It was only in 2019 that the mystery was solved when a lost shipping container with Garfield phones "in a more complete condition than any found before them" was discovered in a secluded sea cave, according to BBC. Residents always suspected the phones came from a shipping container, but they could not trace it. In 2018, an anti-litter group Ar Vilantsou used the phones as a symbol of plastic pollution on the beach and started a campaign.
Vous vous souvenez des téléphones #Garfield ? Après le premier article de @CaBelingard pour #AlertePollution, les langues se sont déliées et un agriculteur a permis de retrouver le conteneur échoué https://t.co/ru7MDssTCY (avec le bon @ cette fois-ci 🙃) pic.twitter.com/q2wtgyXQKX— Thomas Baïetto (@ThomasBaietto) March 26, 2019
The campaign was a success, as it caught the attention of a local farmer called Rene Morvan, who remembered seeing the first Garfield phone after a storm in the early 1980s. He took France Info journalists and Ar Vilantsou activists to the place where they found the many phone fragments and cords stuck underneath stones. He told Franceinfo, "You had to really know the area well." "We found a container aground in a fissure. It was open. Many of the things were gone, but there was a stock of phones," he recalled. However, the destroyed container remains buried under the rocks and is inaccessible, which means that the Garfield phones will continue to wash ashore.
Campaigner Claire Simonin-Le Meur said, "This is the first time in our lives that we've seen that." BBC reported that the major issue is that the container remains inaccessible and it is unknown how much cargo is within it. Moreover, the phones that continue to wash on Brittany's beaches will not decompose in a human lifetime.
me going to france just for a plastic garfield phone https://t.co/2OuJfwCMT0— bj (@M1LFOFMYDREAMS) February 24, 2023
Talking about things washing up on shore, a mysterious metal ball washed up on a beach in Japan and an investigation is in process to understand what exactly it is. First found by a local woman at Enshu beach in the city of Hamamatsu, according to Mirror. Subsequently, the police were informed about it on Tuesday morning. Later, they restricted access to the area and sent a bomb squad to investigate it further. The team used X-ray technology to examine the object's interior and found it hollow. They still do not know what the sphere is or where it came from, according to NHK World News.
A local man who came for a run at the beach said, “That ball has been there for a month. I tried to push it, but it wouldn’t budge.” Moreover, images have been sent to the Japanese armed forces and coast guard for them to investigate the object. Meanwhile, there is a lot of speculation on social media about what the sphere could be at a time when mysterious objects have also been seen in the sky in the United States.
However, the UK is set to carry out a security review after a series of objects that were shot down by the US military, which includes a suspected Chinese spy balloon. The US military intercepted and shot objects out of the sky over Alaska, northern Canada and Lake Huron, according to CNN.