Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – July 10, 2010

A Florida man who reported a suspect wanted in a string of bomb threats will not get a $5,000 reward because he called 911 before the local crime hotline.  Central Florida Crimeline’s board of directors unanimously agreed Wednesday to not award the prize to 22-year-old Mike Schillmoeller.  The man was walking his dog May 25 when he spotted David Disharoon, a homeless man accused of calling in threats to more than 50 schools, hospitals and other places. Schillmoeller reportedly called Crimeline 20 minutes after calling 911.  The nonprofit organization’s executive director, Barb Bergin, says Disharoon was already in custody when they got the tip, so Crimeline didn’t play a role in solving the case.  ***MARLAR: What would we have thought of this guy had he called to get his reward first, and then called 911?  Wouldn’t we accuse him of being a money-hungry jerk?  Heaven forbid he calls 911 and gets the suspect off the street before thinking about a cash reward.

A Spokane couple has reached its goal of collecting enough recyclable aluminum cans to pay for their wedding. Peter Geyer and Andrea Parrish estimated they needed to collect 400,000 cans, worth about $3,800, to pay for the July 31 wedding. With the help of a 150,000-can donation from Alcoa and 73,000 cans from United Recycling Services, they have reached the goal.  The couple continues to collect cans, this time to pay for their honeymoon.  ***MARLAR: Instead of tying cans to their car, they tied their in-laws.

A former priest and anger-management counselor who pulled a gun in a traffic dispute on two men who happened to be U.S. Marshals has been sentenced to a year in prison. Fifty-seven-year-old Jose Luis Avila of Annandale pleaded guilty earlier this year in U.S. District Court to assaulting a federal officer.  ***MARLAR: What hope is there in the world when an anger-management counselor can’t control his temper?

Police in northwestern Pennsylvania say a burglar took some jellybeans from a home – but nothing else.  Police said they are stumped by the burglary in North East Township.  Sgt. Mark Zaleski says it remains unclear whether the suspect wanted only jellybeans. Or maybe that’s all the thief had time to grab.  Police say the burglar broke a front door window and took the jellybeans from a dining room table. The homeowner reported that nothing else was missing or even moved.  ***MARLAR: Here’s my theory.  The kid who lives in the house was playing baseball, knocked a hole in the glass door, and stole the jelly beans to cover his crime.  Just check under the kid’s bed.

Researchers have figured out something most pet owners suspected: dogs and cats don’t dance, but birds do.  They say they’ve documented for the first time that some animals “dance” to a musical beat. The researchers made a series of lab and video studies, watching various animals for signs they were actually feeling the beat of music they heard.  They concluded that some parrots do boogie, and so does the occasional elephant. But there’s no sign of such musicality among dogs and cats, despite long exposure to people and music. And chimps, our closest living relatives, also appear to lack rhythm.  The findings are published by the journal Current Biology online.  ***MARLAR: Unfortunately, the only dance parrots can do is “The Bird.”

Swine flu is changing the way some Christians worship.  New Hampshire’s Roman Catholic Diocese is telling priests to offer Communion without wine and place wafers in parishioner’s hands instead of in their mouths.  The church is also suggesting the tradition of greeting each other should become less germ-friendly. It suggests nodding in place of shaking hands or kissing.  Not so at St. John the Baptist Church in New York, where parishioners said they had no problem sipping from a communal cup.  In the Philippines, Roman Catholic churches are offering special prayers for swine flu victims. Church leaders are praying that officials “find cure and solution to this disease.”  ***MARLAR: Churches are really taking this seriously.  Over the weekend my church changed over the tissues in the pews to Lysol Disinfectant Wipes.

A group of fifth and sixth-graders at Merriam School in Massachusetts are asking Major League Baseball players to consider a radical idea: shake each other’s hands at the end of a game.  ***MARLAR: Leave it to the children to explain how important it is to be a good sport.  When growing up, I played baseball… and after every game, win or lose, you walked back out onto that field and shook hands… either to congratulate the other team on their win, or to say “good game” to the losers and let them know that you’re all equals… and that it’s just a game.  Maybe we should put these kids in charge of Major League Baseball.

An Australian man, who was on trial on suspicion of bank robbery, has been given a retrial because of his name! Believe it or not, the suspect’s name is Rob Banks. The judge made the decision to try the man under an alias because he said the jury might have been swayed by his real name.  ***MARLAR: He’s now trying to get his name changed to Ima Innocent.

Fathers spend more time with their children who resemble them? At least that was the result of a brand new study. The Senegalese study suggests that fathers invest more time and energy in their children who look and smell like them, primal indicators that they are biologically connected.  ***MARLAR: If my choices are to either be estranged from my father, or smell like him… well, I’ll miss him.

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