Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Pet obesity and 85 mph speed limits

- As usual, Texas hates to be one-upped by anyone, particularly another state in the Union.  The Texas Transportation Commission approved an 85 mph speed limit for a portion of road near Austin.  That 85 mph mark tops the previous high of 80 for highways in southern Utah and western Texas.

- In the "you can't make this 'stuff' up" category, a Rhode Island woman is charged with training her cockatoo to curse at her ex-husband and his new girlfriend.  The couple, who oddly live next door to the ex-wife, allege that she trained her pet bird Willy to say the word "whore," preceded by several curse words, whenever the new lady friend is visible.

- You think we have a weight problem in this country?  Apparently, the real problem lies with our pets. America's pets are more prone to obesity than its human residents, according to HuffingtonPost.com.  An estimated 60 percent of domestic dogs and cats are obese or overweight.  This heft puts the pets at increased risk for diabetes, joint and mobility problems, and shortened life spans.

- I'm reading Dennis Lehane's new book, Live by Night, and it promises to be as good or better than his terrific novel, The Given Day.

- If the rich aren't having enough image problems already comes this interesting piece of information--2,362 people legally collected unemployment benefits in 2009 despite having household incomes of $1 million or more!  (Source:  Congressional Research Service)

- Sign of the apocalypse:  The coach of a California Pop Warner football team has been accused of giving cash rewards, to ten-year old boys, for "big hits" on opponents.  Apparently the coach is channeling his inner Sean Payton, the coach of the New Orleans Saints who was suspended for his team's bounty program in the NFL.

- And, finally, here is your political data point of the day.  A record-high 38% of Americans say they prefer the same political party controlling the presidency and Congress, while a record-low 23% say they prefer a divided government.  (Source:  Gallup poll)

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