Back in the fall of 2018, news websites were screaming with headlines like this one from the New York Post, "Andrew Cuomo admits to keeping eagle feather on fireplace" and this one from The State, "Find an eagle feather? US law says don't take it. Cuomo did."

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If you're scratching your head, wondering what happened to warrant such headlines, then New York Governor Andrew Cuomo admitted to finding a feather shed by an eagle after it flew past him while he was canoeing, picking the feather up off the water, and keeping it.

As soon as the admission left the governor's mouth, many were quick to point out that the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act of 1940 prohibits anyone other than Native-Americans to be in possession of a feather from either of these birds. Upon hearing that anyone in possession of an eagle feather could face a fine of up to $1,000 and a year in jail, a spokesperson for Cuomo said that the feather would either be returned to Adirondack Lake or be given to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Repository.

While Cuomo broke a law and didn't realize it, it turns out that a lot of people are breaking a lot of laws on a daily basis and likely don't even realize they are. Check out some of these strange laws and see how many you're guilty of breaking.

  • 1

    Walking With Peanuts in Greene

    If by some chance you go to a concert in the sleepy little village of Greene,  whatever you do- do NOT eat peanuts and walk backward on the sidewalks. Why? Because it's illegal. Why? We don't know.

  • 2

    Pocketed Ice Cream

    My kid once tried to shove his ice cream in the pocket of his jeans. Thankfully he didn't try it on a Sunday because  if it'd been a Sunday, we could have been in a whole heap of trouble. That's right- in the state of New York, it is illegal to walk around on Sunday with an ice cream in your pocket.

  • 3

    Masked Faces

    Uh, oh. Don't tell anybody who has worn a facemask in the last the three years, but  New York Penal Law 240.35(4), states that it is illegal to have two or more people gather together in public while each is wearing any sort of disguise or mask. Does that mean kids are breaking the law on Halloween?

  • 4

    Naked Politicians

    Guess what? It's totally illegal for a politician to use curse words, be nude in public, and use distasteful hand gestures. You have to admit though that if Governor Hochul were to run around Times Square in the nude, it'd make for an even more interesting news day.

  • 5

    Spitoon Availability

    In New York state, spittoons must be provided in every business, and they must be cleaned at least once a day (1-2-3 not it!). I had a nagging feeling my office was missing something...a spittoon must be what it is!

  • 6

    Matchy, Matchy Clothes

    A man cannot go in public wearing non-matching pants and jacket. Uh, oh! I happen to know a bunch of men who are have broken this law.

  • 7

    Four Finger Wave

    If you happen to run into a friend at the grocery store and your hand starts itching to greet them by raising your thumb to your nose and wigging the other four fingers, don't!  For some unusual reason, "Citizens may not greet each other by “putting one’s thumb to the nose and wiggling the fingers."

  • 8

    Slipper Curfew

    Let's hope the slipper police aren't at your house when you wake up at 11 p.m. to a crying baby and slip into your slippers to make a bottle. In New York, it's illegal to wear your slippers after 10 p.m.

  • 9

    Elevator Etiquette

    Whew, I definitely dodged a bullet! I was in an elevator the other day and when it got to my floor, I looked at the person next to me and said, "Have a nice day!" Good thing I was in Pennsylvania when this happened because in New York, the law is pretty clear about elevator rules. The law actually states, "While riding in an elevator, one must talk to no one, and fold his hands while looking toward the door." Ah, there it is! Now I understand why some people think New Yorkers are rude. It's not that we're rude, it's that we're following the law!

  • 10

    Flirting Fine

    We all know someone who is a hopeless flirt. Hopefully for them they're not flirting around the wrong person because a $25 fine can be issued to anyone caught in the act of flirting.

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