Darren’s Daily Dose of News – May 18, 2009

darrensdailydoseofnews12Tiki the giraffe is 18 years old… and that’s pretty old for a giraffe.  And, like many senior citizens, she gets cold easily.  So workers at the Oakland Zoo are having a custom-fit coat made to keep Tiki warm this winter. The zoo staff got in touch with a horse-blanket designer who agreed to donate her services to tailor a coat for Tiki. To get precise measurements for the tailoring, the coat-designer had to scramble up a ladder. The result? A 40 extra, extra long.  ***MARLAR: The matching scarf will cost triple that of the jacket.

The London Sun reports that scientists at the University of California are studying a woman identified as “A.J.” who can remember nearly every detail of her life since 1976. The 42-year-old California woman, whom they nicknamed “Total Recall,” says her life is like a continuous movie and she can picture any scene in detail in her mind. When given any date, she recalled where she was, what she did and what made headlines on that date, even dull news like a local tax passing in 1978. But her memory is selective: when asked to close her eyes and describe the clothes the scientists were wearing at that moment, she couldn’t. ***MARLAR: Their clothes are too dull even for her to remember.

Thirst can masquerade as hunger, which is one reason dieters should stay hydrated. Now German researchers have found another reason: Water fuels your body’s fat burners. For 90 minutes after drinking 16 ounces of chilled water, adults saw their metabolism rise by 24 percent over their average rates. According to the study author, Jens Jordan, M.D., the mechanism is partly due to the energy your body generates to warm the water during digestion.  ***MARLAR: Sure, but who’s going to choose drinking water over microwaving a pizza?

It’s a Valentine’s Day love story.  But newlyweds Lori and Craig Sager didn’t get married under a big, red heart. They tied the knot under the golden arches. The Sagers got hitched at a McDonald’s in Bismarck, North Dakota. It seemed like just the right place. They had been meeting there for lunch every Tuesday for more than a year. Craig Sager says at first he suggested McDonald’s as a joke when they were planning their wedding. But Lori liked the idea. The new bride says you can always get married in a church, so they decided to do something different.  ***MARLAR: The only difficulty was leaving after the ceremony and dodging all the thrown quarter-pounders.

An international research team says it has uncovered hammers possibly used by chimpanzees that go back as far as 43-hundred years in the West African country Ivory Coast. It would be the earliest known use of tools by chimps. The hammers are thought to have been used to crack nuts. The researchers say the stones were about the size of cantaloupes, which would have been too large for human hands. But that would be about right for the larger, stronger hands of chimpanzees. ***MARLAR: Scientists are still trying to explain their other finding of a black monolith.

Two West Virginia women unwittingly gave their PIN numbers to the women who stole their purses, thinking it was the bank that was calling.  ***MARLAR: A quick word of advice – never give out your PIN number to strangers right after your purse is stolen.

A woman in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, didn’t realize she was giving birth until her newborn baby son suddenly appeared in her pants leg.  ***MARLAR: Wow… thank goodness for relaxed fit jeans!

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