Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – June 17, 2010

The head of the World Health Organization says swine flu is still a pandemic even though the period of most intense activity appears to have passed.  ***MARLAR: Whoa… pandas get the swine flu too?

His lawyer calls it a foolish prank, but a judge isn’t laughing. A 17-year-old high school student from Haddon Township admitted in family court Thursday that he defecated in a classmate’s soda during an auto-shop class.  Prosecutors dropped an aggravated assault charge in exchange for the boy’s guilty plea to a charge of tampering with a food product.  Authorities said the victim sipped the soda, then spit it out as his classmates laughed on March 29.  A judge ordered the boy to serve probation, serve 200 hours of community service, write a letter to the victim to apologize – and to write a 1,000-word report on why it’s unhealthy to ingest fecal matter.  ***MARLAR: How about we also force the kid to drink his own concoction?

Britain’s Economic and Social Research Council surveyed women in both the UK and Portugal to find out what makes women happy. They discovered women today are happier having the freedom to have careers and wouldn’t want to be forced to be stay-at-home moms, although they do want families. Their male partners do more housework than they used to, but they’d like them to do more. So the formula for happiness for a woman is that she wants a good job, a family, and a husband who does housework. This study cost British taxpayers $281,000 (US).  ***MARLAR: From the British Department of Studying The Obvious.

New technology will soon make it impossible to lose your family’s beloved dog — because your pet will be able to call you on the phone from wherever it is. As soon as Fido leaves the yard, a transmitter in the collar will send a signal and you’ll receive a call with your pet’s exact location using GPS technology. You will also be able to speak to your pooch through a speaker in the collar. If someone else finds your dog first, that Good Samaritan will be able to press a button that dials your phone and talk directly to you. The two-way device, called PetsCell, will also come with an optional fiber-optic camera to see what your pet is doing and a tracking device. PetsMobility Networks of Scottsdale, AZ, also expects to see a cat version. No word yet on cost. ***MARLAR: I think this is going the wrong direction though… you need to be able to talk to the dog when it’s still inside the house and you’re running late getting home.  “Good boy, Fido… Daddy will be there soon… you can hold it for just a little longer Fido… don’t mess up Mommy and Daddy’s new carpet… we’re almost there… please don’t mess up the rug…”

Where’s the world’s largest pyramid? No, it’s not there, not even close to there. It’s on the other side of the earth, in Cholula de Rivadabia, Mexico. This pyramid tops out at 177 feet and covers 45 acres. This pyramid could run circles – well, maybe triangles – around Egypt’s Great Pyramid of Cheops, which reaches no higher than 130 feet and accounts for a mere 13 acres. ***MARLAR: As of today, neither pyramid contains a Starbucks.

A hotel chain is offering customers space-age PJs. The silk knit suits (complete with booties, gloves and a hood) are free of charge. According to Travelodge’s sleep director, Leigh McCarron, “Something as simple as changing your bed attire can dramatically affect your quality of sleep.” Once worn, the hotel allows the customers to take the PJ’s home to keep. ***MARLAR: Another positive – there’s no fun in stealing a bathrobe if the hotel is already giving you pajamas.

Syracuse, New York native Bill Foody has never owned a mobile phone – so imagine the surprise when he received a bill totaling $6500! The 63-year-old Foody says he hardly ever uses a normal phone, let alone a mobile, so he was shocked the bill when he opened his mail. Foody immediately called Cellular One to complain and is waiting to hear from the firm’s fraud department. He is worried the mistake will affect his credit rating. ***MARLAR: He’s also complaining about the roaming charges because he’s never been to Rome.

A bride in India asked for volunteers from the audience after her groom got cold feet and deserted her at the last minute. One man stepped up, her parents approved of him and the couple was married.  ***MARLAR: She already has better odds of a lasting marriage than any couple living in Hollywood, USA.

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