Weird Universe Blog — July 16, 2018

Vegetable Orchestra

They've got a great beet!

Their website

Posted By: Alex - Mon Jul 16, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Food | Vegetables | Music

July 15, 2018

Upside-Down Jeans

The latest look in weird denim is upside-down jeans from CIE Denim. The belt loops and pockets are at the bottom of the pants, around the legs, instead of at the top around the waist where they should be.

Apparently they were inspired by the Netflix show Stranger Things, which features a parallel universe called the Upside Down. Though I'd be surprised if anyone made that connection just by looking at the jeans.

They come in shorts, which go for $385, and full jeans for $495.

via Huff Post

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jul 15, 2018 - Comments (4)
Category: Fashion | Denim

Eddie the Elegant Elephant

The elephant was brought to Marshall Fields in Chicago as a publicity stunt. She was to rubber stamp copies of a new children's book called THE ELEGANT ELEPHANT. Unfortunately, the elephant did not want to get back on the elevator to leave the building after the book signing. They were forced to build a ramp to the third floor for the elephant to walk down to leave Marshall Field's.

Read the story at much greater length, with many pix, here.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Jul 15, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Animals | Advertising | Retailing | Books | 1940s

July 14, 2018

Extreme Embalming: Video Gamer

The latest example of the recurring weird theme of "extreme embalming" is 18-year-old Renard Matthews, shot while walking his dog. At his funeral, his family had his body posed in his favorite activity while alive—playing a video game in his leather swivel chair, root beer and Doritos close at hand.
More info:

Previous examples on WU of extreme embalming:
Poker face
Having a cigarette
Standing tall

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jul 14, 2018 - Comments (3)
Category: Death

Follies of the Madmen #374

Advertising trumps Nature every time!

From The American Legion Magazine for June 1947.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jul 14, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Business | Advertising | Nature | 1940s | Alcohol

July 13, 2018

Baby Jesus Doll

A legendary flop in the toy industry. It was brought out in 1958 by the Ideal Toy Company, which was the same company that invented the teddy bear in 1903 and introduced the Rubik's Cube in the 1980s.

The story goes that the company president, Ben Michtom, got the idea for it after visiting the Pope. From the NY Post:

Under the leadership of Morris’ son, Ben, Ideal expanded to produce the Shirley Temple Doll; the first black baby doll; Betsy Wetsy; and one major flop, a baby Jesus doll, which had the Catholic Church’s blessing.

“What a bomb,” exclaimed [Paula] Michtom. “Being Jewish, [the family] didn’t understand that no one was going to buy the toy. No one was going to have their children playing with the Christ child.”

Even the kids in the ad for it look pretty disinterested in the thing.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Jul 13, 2018 - Comments (4)
Category: Religion | Toys | 1950s

Blake Reynolds, Early Overdubber

The studio processes of multitracking and overdubbing are commonplace now, a cinch with home digital tech. But in 1952, the notion that a single musician could create a recording where they played every single instrument--a la Prince--was rare and weird.

Here's an early pioneer. Listen to his version of "Waiting for the Robert E. Lee" here.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Jul 13, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Music | Technology | Computers | 1950s

July 12, 2018

Donut Cologne

Invented in 1996 by three California firefighters turned entrepreneurs. Their explanation of how they got the idea:
"We were coming out of a fire one night and we walked past this policeman who smelled like donuts. We were like, 'Wow, we love that smell.' And we started laughing that cops hang out in donut shops so much, they actually are starting to smell like donuts."

More info: LA Times - May 3, 1996

San Bernardino County Sun - Aug 7, 1996

Los Angeles Times - May 3, 1996

Posted By: Alex - Thu Jul 12, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: 1990s | Perfume and Cologne and Other Scents

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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2016 by the author of the post, which is usually either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.

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