Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News

On average people fear spiders more than they do death. ***MARLAR: Which makes sense.  After all, when is the last time you heard something having a serious allergic reaction to a Grim Reeper bite?

There’s new discussion about what caused the death of classical composer Beethoven in 1827. Many experts are now saying the evidence points to possible lead poisoning.  ***MARLAR: Did China even HAVE exports back then?

A recent study says the U.S. leads the world in gun ownership, with nine guns for every ten Americans.  ***MARLAR: With 40% of those guns residing in Ted Nugent’s house.

A Scottish man has won recognition as the fastest human in the world when it comes to typing text messages on his cell phone.  ***MARLAR: He broke the world’s record by typing in the following phrase: “I am without a doubt the world’s most anti-social human being.”

They say only two things are certain — death and taxes. In Cecil Smith’s case, it’s dead bugs and taxes. Smith is an entomologist at the University of Georgia who appraises the bugs that people are claiming as tax deductions. Each year about a dozen people will donate bug collections to the university and try to take a tax write-off. It’s up to Smith to decide how much the dead bugs are worth. He says just any old dead bug is valued at about a nickel. But the price rises with the way the creatures are labeled and mounted. Smith says the average collection donated to the university is worth a deductible of 5 thousand dollars. ***MARLAR: How sad is it that you can get a larger tax deduction from the roaches in your kitchen than for your own kids?

Sad shoppers will pay up to 300% more than consumers who are content, Psychological Science reveals.  ***MARLAR: So to increase sales at the “happiest place on earth,” Mickey Mouse will immediately begin wearing black and will carry a sickle. 

The head of the closed circuit TV program for the London Police said filling the streets with video cameras was “an utter fiasco” that’s done almost nothing to help solve crimes.  ***MARLAR: But it has paid for itself in “World’s Funniest Home Videos” prize money.

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