Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – May 24, 2009

There are more than 1,000 chemicals in a cup of coffee. Of these, less than 100 have been tested, and approximately 14 chemicals so far have caused cancer in rats. ***MARLAR: And you thought I had a cushie radio job. Do you know how much coffee I drink each day?

It’s a guaranteed gross-out. The Maryland Science Center in Baltimore has an exhibit titled “Grossology: The Impolite Science of the Human Body.” It’s all about those things you might have been too embarrassed to ask your science teacher. Among other things, visitors get to walk through a giant nose and see how boogers are formed. The Science Center even has gross cell phone ringtones for downloading on its Web site. ***MARLAR: You can give one to a friend as a gift and say, “I picked this one just for you!”

Gentlemen, consider yourselves warned.  The “Hugging Bandit” is on the loose.  That warning comes from police in Buffalo, New York, where they’re seeing a rash of robberies believed to be the work of the same woman. Investigators say she targets men coming out of bars in the wee hours, who are really — really — drunk.  According to police, the woman comes up, tries to talk to the victims, then gives them a hug — during which she lifts their wallets.  ***MARLAR: Men don’t seem to mind though, because A) they get a hug out of it, and B) the woman spends less on their credit cards than their wives do. 

Paper or plastic?  How will you be paying for your Dr. Pepper?  Cadbury Schweppes and MasterCard are testing vending machines that take credit cards in Dallas, New York, and Chicago.  Company officials say sales are up by as much as 35 percent at the machines in those locations that dispense Dr. Pepper, 7-Up, and other drinks.  ***MARLAR: This is NOT good news for me.  I’m a terrible compulsive shopper.  I’m the only person I know who will walk into a 7-Eleven and write a check for 83-cents because I just had to have a Slurpee.

The mayor of Moscow has informed Russian weather forecasters that they face heavy fines if they get the weather wrong. Moscow Mayor Juri Luschkov is mad because local weathermen predicted light snow this winter and he did not have enough snowplows to clear the streets when the city got hit by blizzards.  ***MARLAR: Holding meteorologists accountable?  What would (LOCAL METEOROLOGIST) think?  Would he bring his dung beetles and divining rods out in order to double-check his predictions?

Greece is banning all electronic arcade games because of the epidemic of illegal gambling going on in the country. ***MARLAR: I’ll give you ten-to-one this lasts less than a year.

A new study from Louisiana found that just dieting is as effective for weight loss as dieting plus exercise.  ***MARLAR: Actually, dieters get less exercise, since they’re no longer walking back and forth to the refrigerator.

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