The Daily Wrap: October 16th

It’s Hump Day again and we have a fine batch of handpicked news stories for you today that still won’t mention the government shut down.  Except for just then, but that was it, we swear.

Oreos vs Crack



As you may have suspected, Oreos are pretty delicious, but are they more delicious than cocaine?  Which is to say more addictive?  In a study that was actually scientific, and inspired by one researcher’s curiosity about high sugar, high fat foods and how they’re marketed more strongly in lower income areas, rats were given a choice between Oreos and rice cakes at the end of a maze.  Obviously the rats chose the Oreo side of the maze far more often and, in fact, the results mirrored a different test in which rats were given shots of cocaine or just saline for finishing the maze.  The rats who chose Oreos would spend as much time on that side of the maze as rats who had chosen cocaine, meaning they loiter like junkies in the exact same way. 

Also noteworthy in the study was that Oreos seem to affect brain chemistry in a similar way to drugs like cocaine, causing even more neurons in the brain’s pleasure centers to fire than drugs do.  Researchers think this might explain why people eat food that is bad for them even when they know it’s bad.  It’s not a lack of self control.  It’s addiction. 


How Pink is the NFL?


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In October, the NFL pinks up the joint in support of breast cancer awareness.  Pink ribbons, pink cheerleaders, pink Bengals.  During this month, all merchandise sold that has been branded pink helps support cancer research, except maybe not so much as you’d think.

Business Insider did some math and the numbers are kind of sad.  The NFL takes a 25% royalty from the wholesale price (1/2 retail) and donates 90% of that to the American Cancer Society.  That means if you spend $100 on pink NFL merchandise, the NFL takes $12.50 and then $11.25 goes to ACS.  Just over 71% of money that ACS receives goes to cancer research, which means at the end of the day, for every $100 spent on pink NFL gear, $8.01 will go to cancer research.

Now there’s still a lot of money being made, and you could argue that “awareness” has an intrinsic value, although it’s hard to say if anyone is not aware of breast cancer anymore, but keeping it in the public eye never hurts.  Just makes you wonder who gets most of the rest of that money.


Psychologists Can’t Pay Hookers With Patient Information


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A psychologist who had a laptop chock full of confidential patient information (652 clients’ worth), has lost his license after it came out that he gave the laptop to a prostitute as collateral until he could get to an ATM.  The prostitute opted to just take off with the laptop leaving Sunil Kakar to try to think up an excuse for why he had lost the confidential files of 652 people.  He opted at first to say it had been stolen out of his car, which he only reported 10 days later.

Police found the laptop the same day he reported it missing, having been pawned by the woman he gave it to.  Kakar himself has a history of poor decision at work, from taking food from inmates when he worked in a prison to driving under the influence of marijuana and refusing to leave a room during a strip search, as well as being admitted to a mental health facility as a patient once.  His patients will all need to find new doctors.


RIP Gummy Man


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The man who invented Gummy Bears, Hans Riegel, has died at the age of 90.  The company he started enjoys $2.6 billion in annual gummy sales to this day, all based on a tiny, squishy candy that’s been produced in the family factory since 1920.  Celebrate his life by heading to Vat19 and buying a 5lb bear.


Ranch Dressing Ain’t No Joke


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We all enjoy Ranch dressing now and then but for some people it’s a much more serious condiment than it is for others.  Ata Jack in the Box in Seattle, a customer who was told they could have only two packets of Ranch and they’d have to pay for a third suffered a Ranch-style mental breakdown and flew into a rage.  Rather than charge him the whopping 25 cents it would have set him back for the packet, the cashier offered it for free but by then it was too late. An elderly man tried to calm him down, but the Ranch fanatic shoved the older man to the floor, muttered something about having a knife, and then rode off on his super cool bicycle.

Hopefully the police are tracking down this thug with a SWAT team and the streets will be safe again soon.