The idea was that the card in the catalog would have a scent, and then the book on the shelf would have a matching scent. So you could find your books by smell. There were about 60 scents in total, including apple, chocolate, garlic, lemon, roses, root beer, leather, pizza, orange, strawberry, candles, pine, cheddar cheese, clover, and smoke.
I was curious what became of the scented catalog, so I emailed the library and asked. The reply came just a few minutes later:
Unfortunately, the UA Library no longer has this catalog, and has not had a physical card catalog since around August 1989. We aren't sure what exactly happened to the scented catalog, but we guess that the cards eventually lost their scent over time, but remained part of the catalog until it was decommissioned.
And they also emailed me a news clipping about the catalog (in extended, below) from the local Upper Arlington paper.
Breadwoman is a character who wears rags and a loaf of bread on her head while she dances to electronic music. She was created in the mid-1980s by performance artist Anna Homler, apparently having emerged from Homler's "background as an anthropologist and her inexplicable desire to wear bread." Although Breadwoman's mask was originally a hollowed-out loaf of bread, it's now made out of latex.
Sebastian Tomczak, an electronic musician from Australia, uploaded a ten-hour white-noise video to YouTube, and was promptly walloped with five infringement claims...
White noise is generally defined by hazy and inharmonious hissing—it’s noise-eating noise, anti-noise, a way of drowning out other sounds. Per a BBC report, the claimants accusing Tomczak of infringement included companies who peddle white-noise recordings as sleep therapy. It turns out that his nondescript hissing mirrored their nondescript hissing.
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.
Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.
Our banner was drawn by the legendary underground cartoonist Rick Altergott.