Weird Universe Blog — June 16, 2019

Roadkill Psychic

In the late 1990s, psychic Terrie Brill of Elk Grove, California made headlines by claiming that roadkill could be used to predict the future. Specifically:

Running over a cat is a sign you're about to have a spiritual crisis.

Running over a deer means you're about to hurt someone you love.

Crushing a crow with your car means you're not prepared for the future.

Rolling over a snake could mean you're about to have a heart attack or other serious accident.

If you run over a dog, expect your friendships to take a turn for the worse.

If a bee collides with your windshield, you need to make more time for yourself.

... mashed mosquitos have no effect whatsoever on your future.

Brill died in 2001, but her son maintains a Facebook page about her, promoting her posthumously published book The I-Factor. Unfortunately, the Facebook page doesn't seem to contain anything about the roadkill predictions.

Terrie Brill



Edmonton Journal - Sep 8, 1998

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jun 16, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Animals | Death | Predictions | 1990s

Follies of the Madmen #429



Posted By: Paul - Sun Jun 16, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Aliens | Business | Advertising | Tobacco and Smoking | 1970s

June 15, 2019

RIP Leon Redbone (1949-2019)

A truly odd, enigmatic musician. As noted by his obit in the Independent:

He was an eccentric blend of antiquarian, actor, singer, musician and performance artist – with a strong element of Marxian absurdity. Redbone sometimes pulled a tomato from his handkerchief and placed it on a stool beside him, then wrapped it up again as he left the stage.

For a long time, almost no biographical info was known about him. Many suspected he wasn't even a real person. Perhaps someone such as Frank Zappa or Bob Dylan was posing as Redbone. But no, Redbone was real. He died on May 30.

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jun 15, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Music | Obituaries

Skin Tight, Pin Striped, Purple Pedal Pushers

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jun 15, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Fashion | Music | Public Indecency | 1960s

June 14, 2019

The Rewards of Heroism

If there were a Cheapskate's Hall of Fame, the Chicago Board of Education would surely have to be in it. In 1994, after gym teacher Clarence Notree heroically saved a group of children from a gunman who had entered the school gym by shielding them with his body, the Board of Education informed him that he wasn't entitled to Workers Compensation for his injuries because saving children wasn't technically part of his job.

After a protracted legal battle, he did finally get a settlement of $13,447.

More info: NY Times

Opelousas Daily World - Sep 30, 1994



Franklin Daily Journal - Sep 30, 1994

Posted By: Alex - Fri Jun 14, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Jobs and Occupations | Lawsuits | 1990s

June 13, 2019

The Death Test

It's officially known by the acronym CrisTAL (Criteria for Screening and Triaging to Appropriate Alternative Care), but it's more widely known as the Death Test. It's a 29-point checklist to help doctors determine if elderly patients are at risk of dying within the next three months. So, it seems like a more rigorous version of the "Surprise Question" which (as we've posted about before) is another test docs use to predict imminent death.

More info: funeralwise.com

The Death Test:
For patients with an age of 65 or over who have been admitted to hospital this time in an emergency:
1. Altered level of consciousness (Glasgow Coma Score change >2 or AVPU=P or U)
2. Blood pressure (a systolic blood pressure of less than 90 mm Hg)
3. Respiratory rate of more then five and less than 30
4. Pulse rate of less than 40 or more than 140
5. Need for oxygen therapy, or known oxygen saturation of less than 90 per cent
6. Hypolglaecemia blood glucose level (less sugar in the blood than normal)
7. Repeat or prolonged seizures
8. Low output of urine (less than 15 mL/h or less than 0.5 mL/kg/h) or a MEW or SEWS score of more than 4
9. Previous history of disease, including:
10. Advanced cancer
11. Kidney disease
12. Heart failure
13. Various types of lung diseases
14. Strokes and vascular dementia
15. Heart attack
16. Moderate to severe liver disease
17. Mental impairment such as dementia or disability from a stroke
18. Length of stay before this RRT call (>5 days predicts 1-year mortality)
19. Repeat hospitalisations in the past year
20. Repeat admission to the intensive care department of the hospital
21. Frailty
22. Unexplained weight loss
23. Self-reported exhaustion
24. Weakness (being unable to grip objects, being unable to handle objects or lift heavy objects of less than or equal to 4.5kg,
25. Slow walking speed (walks 4.5m in more than 7 seconds) or is
26. Inability to do physical exercise or stand
27. Is a nursing home resident or lives in supported accommodation
28. Having urine in their blood (more than 30mg albumin/g creatinine
29. Abnormal ECG (irregular heartbeat, fast heartbeat and any other abnormal rhythm or more than or equal to 5 ectopics/min and changes to Q or ST waves)

Posted By: Alex - Thu Jun 13, 2019 - Comments (2)
Category: Death | Medicine

The House in the Middle

Atomic bombs hate slums, but respect a nice clean domicile.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Jun 13, 2019 - Comments (4)
Category: Buildings and Other Structures | Death | Destruction | Domestic | War | 1950s

June 12, 2019

Yogurt For Men

From the history of odd marketing decisions: The launch of Powerful Yogurt in 2013, promoted as "For Men, By Men," because apparently regular yogurt wasn't masculine enough.



Powerful Yogurt is still around, but it now promotes itself as being for people with "active lifestyles," rather than just for men. It offers some explanation on its website for the change of focus:

Why did we [initially] focus on the male market? As consumers, we had spent years wondering why dairy companies were purposefully and squarely catering to women, while overlooking the other half of the population. Research showed that dairy products were an ideal, healthy source of protein that could be a filling and high-octane component of the male diet, but there weren’t any offerings that were encouraging men to fuel up on healthy dairy products rather than highly processed snack foods and synthetic protein powders...

The massive positive response from active women and men alike pushed the brand to fully evolve to an active lifestyles brand in late 2013. It was clear that Powerful had struck a chord with active people across the world, even being named “Best Yogurt” at the 2013 World Dairy Congress in Switzerland.

I'm guessing online mockery also played a role in their change of focus.

More info: Jezebel.com

Posted By: Alex - Wed Jun 12, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Food | Advertising | Products

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