Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – March 21, 2010

A Phoenix, Arizona man accused admonishing motorists of traffic laws while posing as a police officer apparently picked the wrong driver to pull over.  A Maricopa County jury on Tuesday found 62-year-old David Word guilty of impersonating a lawman for pulling over an off-duty police officer.  Avondale police officer Matt Lydic says he was on his way to work in his personal vehicle when Mr. Word pulled him over while driving a black Ford Crown Victoria equipped with lights and a siren. Lydic says Word told him to slow down, then drove away.  The officer copied down the license plate of the vehicle, which came back registered to Word. Police arrested Word at his home.  ***MARLAR: So, what about the police officer speeding through the neighborhood, which is why Mr. Word pulled him over in the first place?  Are we just ignoring that part of the story?

If a bike looks too tempting — it could be a bait bike. Police at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are going after bike thieves with some high-tech gadgetry. Police are placing satellite tracking devices on bikes planted around campus.  Officers say they made 16 busts in the first four months of the program.  The bikes were donated to the university by a local bicycle dealer. He says bike thieves hurt his customers.  ***MARLAR: Wouldn’t that HELP his business?  After all, they’d need a new bike!

A Florida judge has ruled a city law banning drooping trousers in Riviera Beach is unconstitutional. Seventeen-year-old Julius Hart spent a night in jail after an officer saw his boxers while the teen was riding a bike. A first offense for saggy pants carries a fine of 150 bucks or community service. Repeat offenders face jail time.  ***MARLAR: On the plus side, with the pants around their knees, they are much easier for police to chase down.

Michigan businessman Steve Oswald won’t get paid for cleaning a public restroom. But he is getting a plunger — a golden plunger. He billed the city of Saugatuck nearly 157 bucks, after cleaning a restroom himself. He took matters and a mop into his own hands, when his customers complained about the dirty public bathroom. Oswald admits he didn’t think he would get reimbursed for his restroom duty. But city officials are recognizing his civic spirit, with what they’re calling the Golden Plunger Award. It’s a toilet plunger spray-painted gold and mounted on an oak stand.  ***MARLAR: A gold-painted toilet plunger.  Boy, that’ll give you incentive to do the right thing.  Dude, just give me the money you spent making the Toilet Trophy.

Ray Erickson of Santa Cruz, California, won a lawsuit against American Airlines alleging that one of the company’s planes released two chunks of toilet waste, better know as “blue ice,” which crashed through the skylight of his boat. Erickson tracked down the plane — American Airlines Flight 1950 — sued in small claims court and was awarded $3,236. ***MARLAR: He plans on using the money for a psychiatrist to help him get over his fear of blue toilet water.

About 20% of people eat a diet composed entirely of just 10 or fewer foods.  ***MARLAR: And four of those are chocolate.

A recent poll reveals that more than 80 percent of Americans favor major changes in the way elections are conducted.  ***MARLAR: Change number one – better candidates.

“Acre” literally means the amount of land plowable in one day.  ***MARLAR: So in my case an “acre” would be four-foot square.

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