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

Elementary school playgrounds swings are being removed from Cabell County schools in southern West Virginia in part because of lawsuits over injuries.  The schools safety manager says a lot of parents are accusing him of being un-American, but he says the cost of maintaining a safe surface is too expensive.  A lawsuit in the past year involved a youngster who broke his arm jumping off a swing like Superman. It was settled for $20,000.  ***MARLAR: When I was in school we had concrete under the swings – and we were taught that Superman was fictional.

Emergency room visits for school-age athletes with concussions has skyrocketed in recent years, suggesting the intensity of kids’ sports has increased along with awareness of head injuries.  ***MARLAR: So beginning immediately, all chess club members must wear helmets.

Victoria Walker is facing up to 15 years in prison if convicted of assault with a deadly weapon at Disney World. A woman claims that Walker came up from behind her screaming and accusing her of cutting in line at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Cup Ride. She says Walker attacked her and her kids, threw her to the ground, pinned her between a giant tea cup and saucer, beat and kicked her, then tried to choke her with the lanyard she wears to carry a water bottle. ***MARLAR: The only time behavior such as this is appropriate is when the person in front of you has more than ten items in the express checkout line.

Two families have described how they saved the driver of a car that crashed into a backyard swimming pool in Scarborough, Australia. The car crashed through a backyard fence before plunging into a family’s pool. Homeowner Don Robins says the crash happened in the middle of the night. The neighbor Neoma Higgins says the driver remained in the car as it sank and her husband was forced to dive in and rescue him. The 27-year-old driver has been charged with a range of traffic offenses, including driving under the influence.  ***MARLAR: And flooding the engine.

Police in Chile are hunting a con man who is selling bottles of mud, claiming that buyers will be “as smart as Einstein” if they smear it on their heads. So far he’s duped more than 300 people into paying $100 each for his “Lunar Mud,” which, he said, comes from moon rocks and contains “brain enhancing minerals.” ***MARLAR: You have to agree though – the people who are buying this stuff obviously need something to increase their intelligence.

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