Darren’s Daily Dose of Weird News – May 24, 2010

An East Tennessee woman has been charged with forcing her 5-year-old son to smoke a cigarette.  A Carter County deputy told the Johnson City Press that a 24-year-old woman was arrested Tuesday night on charges of child abuse and neglect, disorderly conduct and possession of marijuana.  A jail officer said the woman was being held on a $12,500 bond. Jail records did not show if the woman hired a lawyer.  Deputy Cory Tidwell said that in response to a complaint by a witness he stopped the woman in a car and she told him she had forced her son to smoke a cigarette because “she was teaching him not to smoke.”  ***MARLAR: She’s also been trying to teach him not to drink by continually forcing him to make her the perfect martini.

My Fox Philly reports, Free-speech lawsuits filed Wednesday accuse Pennsylvania police of wrongly charging hundreds of people with disorderly conduct for swearing.  American Civil Liberties Union lawyers say they reviewed 770 such citations issued by Pennsylvania State Police in a recent one-year span and found most involved profanities and other legal, non-obscene speech.  The plaintiffs are a pizza delivery driver briefly jailed for cursing at a local officer over a parking ticket and a Luzerne County woman cited by state police for hurling a derogatory name at a swerving motorcyclist.  The statute carries a possible 90-day jail term and $300 fine. The woman says she paid $1,500 to fight the ticket.  A state police spokeswoman says the agency has no immediate comment.  ***MARLAR: Mostly because her comment would result in her getting arrested.

The bigger the plate and serving utensil, the more you’ll dish out. In one study people at an ice cream social who were given a large bowl and a 3 ounce scooper ate 53% more ice cream than those given a smaller bowl and a 2 ounce scooper. With beverages, research shows that people pour 28% more into short, wide glasses than into tall, skinny ones, says Brian Wansink, Ph.D., director of the food and brand lab at Cornell University.  ***MARLAR: It’s all relative.  For example, if you listen to this show over a shower radio the humor doesn’t seem as dry.

A 20-year-old man, whose name is being withheld, was stopped for speeding along Highway 169 in Seattle. He nearly successfully evaded state troopers after burrowing himself into the soft ground along the highway and then covering himself with dirt and leaves. Trooper Jeff Merrill said the man hid for nearly an hour and sent a text message to his girlfriend to pick him up. Officers finally caught him when he scrambled from his hole.  ***MARLAR: Someone has seen a few too many Rambo movies.

An American Animal Hospital Association poll shows that 33 percent of dog owners admit that they talk to their dogs on the phone or leave messages on an answering machine while away.  ***MARLAR: We used to do that for our cat –but she won’t even listen to us when we’re home.

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.

Scientists at Wroclaw University in Poland conducted a study and found that women whose legs were 5% longer than average were judged to have the most attractive legs.  ***MARLAR: No word as to why they’re not wasting time on cancer studies.

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