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

Wisconsin police say a street musician apparently upset by criticism of his music bashed a man over the head with his guitar, slammed another person into a wall and wrestled with an officer before being arrested.  Madison police spokesman Joel DeSpain told The Capital Times that 31-year-old Brandin Hochstrasser, known as “Bongo Jesus,” was angry when a 54-year-old man knocked his music. DeSpain says the two argued and police were called when Hochstrasser began hitting his critic with his guitar.  ***MARLAR: Apparently Brandin has seen “Animal House” one too many times.

On an airplane, in a movie theater or in a restaurant, the shrill sound of a childish voice raised in distress can resemble nails across a blackboard — especially when it’s not your child. Now one North Carolina eatery has drawn a line in the sand by posting signs prohibiting children’s uproar.   “Screaming Children Will NOT Be Tolerated!” say placards posted at the Olde Salty restaurant in Carolina Beach. N.C. And while the signs may seem to be telling some parents their patronage is unwelcome, restaurant owner Brenda Armes said it’s actually been a business boon.  “It has been a good thing for us,” Armes told reporters.  It has brought in more customers than it has ever kept away.”  ***MARLAR: Meanwhile, McDonald’s has more screaming kids than ever before.

On an airplane, in a movie theater or in a restaurant, the shrill sound of a childish voice raised in distress can resemble nails across a blackboard — especially when it’s not your child. Now one North Carolina eatery has drawn a line in the sand by posting signs prohibiting children’s uproar.   “Screaming Children Will NOT Be Tolerated!” say placards posted at the Olde Salty restaurant in Carolina Beach. N.C. And while the signs may seem to be telling some parents their patronage is unwelcome, restaurant owner Brenda Armes said it’s actually been a business boon.  “It has been a good thing for us,” Armes told reporters.  It has brought in more customers than it has ever kept away.”  ***MARLAR: If airlines would enact this I might fly more.

Seniors who can still give a firm handshake and walk at a brisk pace are likely to live longer than those who can’t, according to British researchers.   They found simple measures of physical capability were related to life span among graying heads in the community, even after accounting for age, sex and body size.  The study analyzed grip strength, walking speed, time to get up from a chair and ability to balance on one leg, mostly in people 70 years and older, and looked at mortality from all causes.  ***MARLAR: If physical capability is so important, why are so many seniors physically incapable of shutting off their car’s turn signal?

A British labor union is demanding new workplace health rules to prevent telemarketers from losing their voices.  ***MARLAR: Wait a second, since when do we want telemarketers to not lose their voices?

In Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, 87-year-old Violet Bishop was watching television when she thought she’d have a snack. So she decided to dig into the Halloween candy early and picked up a box of Milk Duds. But as she started to munch she noticed one of the Milk Duds didn’t seem as fresh as the others. She said, “One was rather crunchy and I could not get it to soften up, no matter how hard I tried.” She finally took it out of her mouth only to discover it wasn’t a Milk Dud at all. It was her hearing aid that fallen out of her ear and into the box. Fortunately there was no serious damage to the hearing aid or her teeth but it cost her about $250 to have the hearing aid cleaned and repaired. Violet later told reporters, “As much as I love my Halloween candy, I’ll be sure to notice what I’m eating from now on!”  ***MARLAR: Meanwhile, she’s been fitted with a Milk Dud for an ear bud.

Researchers at Tulane University could have the inside scoop on beating the energy crisis — zoo poop. The scientists are studying droppings from hippos, giraffes and other plant-eating animals. The zoo doo contains bacteria that helps turn plant waste into butanol, a type of alcohol that can fuel engines.  Eric Smith, associate director of the Tulane Energy Institute, says scientists scooping up zoo poop might look funny. But he tells New Orleans City Business that animals have been turning plants into energy long before people ever thought about doing it.  ***MARLAR: The tough part will be getting the lions to pee into a gas tank instead of the kitty-litter box.

There’s a book out called “My Beautiful Mommy.” It’s written by plastic surgeon Michael Salzhauer of Bal Harbour, Florida, and it helps explain to kids why mommy suddenly looks different. Salzhauer says he gets patients who don’t know how to reassure their frightened kids that mommy isn’t sick when she’s having surgery. So the book tells the story of a perky mom explaining to her child that she’s getting a tummy tuck and nose job to feel better.  ***MARLAR: And the mommy tells the kids, I’m getting a tummy tuck because of YOU!

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