Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News: February 25, 2011

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NEW NEWS…

A Memphis pizza delivery driver credited with saving a customer who’d fallen at home says she suspected something was wrong in part because her own mother had twice fallen and been stuck on the floor.  Speaking on NBC’s “Today” show, Domino’s delivery driver Susan Guy said she became concerned when she found out Jean Wilson had gone three days without ordering her daily pizza.  Susan said her own mother had cancer and twice fell while living with her and spent hours on the floor, so she knew it was a possibility in Wilson’s case.  Susan went to Wilson’s home and then called 911. Police later broke the door down and found Wilson on the floor, where she’d fallen three days earlier.  Susan said she’s spoken to Wilson in the hospital and she’s doing well.  ***MARLAR: She actually volunteered to drive the injured woman to the hospital herself – because she figured she could do it in 30-minutes or less.

You know things are out of whack when one of the top 10 stories on a news website is that:  Teen pop sensation Justin Bieber has cut his signature moptop, opting for a more “mature” look.  ***MARLAR: (Like you need a kicker comment for this?)

So you thought people in this country named their children oddly, with names like Apple or Rumor, but one man in Egypt may have topped them all.  Inspired by the role Facebook played in the recent protests and ultimate overthrow of Egypt’s president, the man felt a need express his thanks, and did-so by naming his newborn girl “Facebook.”  ***MARLAR: Sadly, all this girl will likely get for her birthday now are “pokes”.

Recent research has found that sitting for long periods of time may be bad for your health — even if you regularly exercise. Scientists are discovering that sitting for extended times may put us at risk for diabetes, heart disease, cancer, obesity, even early death. This has some medical experts calling for intermittent daily activities, like stair climbing, to be prescribed along with the traditional call for regular physical exercise. ***MARLAR: I regularly get up from my chair to hit the fridge – so I’m already good.

RETRO NEWS: FORMERLY NEW, NOW NOT NEW, BUT STILL ENTERTAINING…

For centuries, art historians have been troubled by Mona Lisa’s enigmatic smile – but, according to one doctor, her cholesterol levels were more worrying.  For Dr Vito Franco, from Palermo University, she shows clear signs of a build-up of fatty acids under the skin, caused by too much cholesterol. ***MARLAR: So she was smiling because she just had pork rinds?

Residents of Canada’s wilderness are reporting that “Bigfoot” might be on the prowl in northern Ontario. Residents of a native Indian reserve 1,000 miles north of Toronto have discovered 14-inch-long footprints. ***MARLAR: I’m a little embarrassed about this. I guess we should have informed folks that I was planning on doing some camping there last weekend. Oops.

Electric and hybrid vehicles may be better for the environment, but the California Legislature says they’re bad for the blind.  It has passed a bill to ensure that the vehicles make enough noise to be heard by visually impaired people about to cross a street.  The measure would establish a committee to study the issue and recommend ways the vehicles could make more noise.  The state Department of Motor Vehicles says more than 300,000 of the vehicles are on state roads. Officials say they don’t keep statistics on pedestrian accidents involving those vehicles.  ***MARLAR: In a related story, camouflaged military vehicles must now be painted bright orange so the deaf can see them coming.

One of the most powerful images in history is that of Martin Luther nailing his criticisms of the medieval Church (his “95 Thesis”) to a church door, thus beginning the Protestant Reformation. But there is considerable doubt as to whether he actually published his critique so dramatically. Many scholars believe now that he simply circulated it.  ***MARLAR: Today he would probably send it out simultaneously to millions via Facebook, it would be identified as spam, and he’d be banned from Facebook entirely – altering the course of history.

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