Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – March 14, 2010

The head of the U.N. mission in Afghanistan said Thursday that it’s “high time” a political solution is found with the Taliban to resolve the more than 8-year-old conflict. “It’s time to talk,” Kai Eide said. ***MARLAR: Wait a minute… no one has spoken to the Taliban in eight years?  Well no WONDER they’re ticked.

Producer Mark Burnett said Thursday he is pitching a series to television networks that would be about Alaska seen through the eyes of its most famous resident, former governor, Sarah Palin. ***MARLAR: He expects to save money in production costs by ditching the cue cards and just having Sarah write her lines on her hand.

It doesn’t really count, but five-year-old Drew Gray has done more than most of us could on a golf course.  The kindergartner had a hole-in-one on the 75-yard, fifth hole at Yorktown Golf Club near St. Louis. But it doesn’t count because it was on par-3 course. The shot was witnessed by several family members and verified by course owner John Bethard.  He says Drew is the youngest player to ace a hole at the course. ***MARLAR: The closest thing to a hole in one I’ve ever had is in the toe of my sock.

Biochemist James Shippen and colleague Barbara May drove from north Scotland to the south of Italy without once leaving their car to use the bathroom. They did it to publicize the Indipod, the first portable toilet installed in a car. It goes in the trunk, costs $555 (US), and uses a chemical tank that dissolves solid waste to be flushed later. For privacy, there’s an inflatable cabana blown up by a fan plugged into the cigarette lighter.  ***MARLAR: I don’t mean to state the obvious here, but is it really such a good idea having methane fumes around an active cigarette lighter?

Linda Bensel-Meyers, director of composition for the English department at the University of Tennessee, filed a report noting questionable school practices involving student athletes which include tutoring, grades, course selection and oversight. Bensel-Meyers called the athletic department’s manipulation of the athletes’ academic programs a “system tantamount to institutionalized slavery.”  ***MARLAR: Usually though, Linda, slaves aren’t allowed to turn pro at the end of four years for millions of dollars.

A company in California has created an I.Q. test for dogs that sells for $49.99.  ***MARLAR: Spend 50 bucks for this, and it proves your dog is smarter than you.

Someone in Villa Park, Illinois, stole a trailer loaded with $50,000 worth of broccoli.  ***MARLAR: It has a street value of nothing.

A Canadian psychologist is selling a video that teaches you how to test your dog’s IQ.  ***MARLAR: If you buy it, your dog is smarter than you.

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