Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News: January 17, 2011

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NEW NEWS…

Much of New England continues to dig out from under more than 2 feet of snow and children in hundreds of communities had a second day off from school Thursday as power companies worked to restore energy to homes and businesses darkened by the region’s third snowstorm in three weeks.  Meanwhile, the National Weather Service reports snow on the ground in every state except Florida.  ***MARLAR: Snow plow drivers say it’s the most global warming they’ve had shovel in years.

At the annual Consumer Electronics Show – known as the “Super Bowl of Technology,” in Las Vegas you can buy the biggest TV anywhere – the Panasonic 152″ 3D Plasma TV. It has a price to match its size – a cool $500,000. ***MARLAR: I’m going to begin looking for change in the sofa cushions starting immediately.

The first large study to examine the use of X-rays, CT scans and other medical radiation in children estimates the average child will get more than seven radiation scans by age 18, a potentially worrisome trend.  Most of the scans involve X-rays, which use relatively little radiation. But there is growing concern about CT scans, which entail far more radiation and can raise the risk for cancer, particularly in children. The study found that X-rays of the chest, hand and foot are the most common.  ***MARLAR: On the plus side, too much radiation gives you super powers so you can pummel the doctors for giving you too much radiation.

Judgment Day is almost here. There’s a movement of Christians loosely organized by radio broadcasts and websites, independent of churches and convinced by their reading of the Bible that the end of the world will begin May 21, 2011. To get the word out, they’re using billboards and bus stop benches, traveling caravans of RVs and volunteers passing out pamphlets on street corners. Behind the movement is Oakland, Calif.-based Family Radio Worldwide, the independent Christian ministry whose leader, Harold Camping, has calculated the May 21 date based on his reading of the Bible. ***MARLAR: I wouldn’t panic just yet though – he also predicted the end of the world in 1994, and I’m pretty sure he was wrong that time.

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

You could say she has a “hair trigger temper.”  Julie Anderson of Richland, Washington, was arraigned on charges stemming from a bad haircut. Police say she was so upset with her hairdo that she returned to the salon and demanded to speak to the person responsible. When told the stylist wasn’t there yet, Anderson allegedly waited in the parking lot for the stylist to show up, pulled out a gun, demanded $100 from the stylist, and then opened fire aiming two shots into the back window of the stylist’s car.  ***MARLAR: She was actually aiming for the tires, but her bangs were too long.

The X-Box is good for many things — hours of mindless video fun, keeping kids from doing their homework, and now — apparently creating a love connection. Claire Wilcox of Cardiff in the United Kingdom met American Shane Nelson while playing X-Box with him online – 4,300 miles apart. Now the couple plans to marry. They chatted for hours after the game which led to a cyber-romance. One month later, Shane proposed. They plan to wed in Cardiff and will then set up home in Missouri where Shane’s a mechanic.  ***MARLAR: And change their names to Mr. & Mrs. PacMan.

The Sun reports that University of London researchers studied 1,100 adults and found that sending e-mails and text messages lowers your I.Q.!  Tapping out text messages knocked 10 points off their I.Q. scores, and researchers are now warning employers that more than six in ten workers admit they’re addicted to texting and e-mail, especially men, and it may be lowering their mental sharpness.  ***MARLAR: I wouldn’t put much credibility in this story though… I received it via email.

A Romanian angler managed to swallow one of his own hooks after mixing up his packed lunch with his bait. The man had prepared several hooks with bait and kept them in a tin while fishing. When the man became hungry he reached for a similar tin which his wife had used to pack his lunch, but ended up grabbing the wrong one. He pulled out the fish food instead of his own and swallowed the hook as well. He was taken to a local hospital after other anglers saw him shouting and running about in considerable distress. Doctors managed to detach the barbed hook from his throat after a two-hour operation. (Ouch!) ***MARLAR: If you’re so dense that you can mistake fish bait on a treble hook for your wife’s cooking, you need to buy her a cookbook… and double-up on your insurance.

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