To trepan means to perforate the skull with a drill. Which makes the title of this old folk song from Norwich extremely odd.
However, the song itself isn't actually about parents drilling a hole in the skull of their child, despite the title. Turns out, 'trepan' has another, archaic meaning, which is to trap or ensnare, and that's how it's used here.
But even though it isn't about pediatric brain surgery, it's still quite a dark and violent song.
It's performed below by Jon Wilks. He starts singing the song about halfway through the clip.
Oh, it was my cruel parents that first did me trepan;
They married me to an old man for the sake of money and land.
If they'd married me to a young man without a penny at all,
He'd have took me in his arms and have loved me all the more.
Oh, it's, "Hush, my dearest Nancy, oh, wait 'til we go to town,
I'll buy you a lady's bonney, likewise a mus-e-lin gown;
There is no lady in the land your beauty can compare,
And I'll buy you a little lapdog to follow you everywhere."
"I want none of your little lapdogs nor none of your gentle care;
It's a pity that such an old man my beauty you should snare.
I am not sixteen years of age and scarcely in my bloom;
Oh, you are my cruel torment, both morning, night and noon."
When he comes to bed at night he's as cold as any clay:
His feet are as cold at midnight as corpse, I've heard them say;
His pipes are out of order and his old flute's never in tune:
Oh, I wish that he was dead and a young man in the room.
[Now some they do persuade me to drown him in a well,
And others do persuade me to grind him in a mill.
I'd rather take my own advice and tie him to a stake,]
Oh I'll get a big stick and labour him well, until his bones I break.
Tunnelling occurs if, the very first time the candle was burned, it wasn't allowed to melt all the wax on top. This creates a "memory ring" in the wax. The candle will subsequently tunnel down this ring.
The solution, therefore, is to make sure the 'first burn' is done correctly. According to osmology.co:
Our biggest recommendation for the first burn, is to make sure that the pool of melted wax reaches the edges of your candle before you snuff the flame. We generally aim for the wax pool to be about 1cm deep at the edges before we put it out.
How long this takes depends on the diameter of the candle.
I realize now that I've been burning candles wrong my entire life.
In 1977, Carol Louise Hargis was convicted of killing her husband by beating him over the head with a lead weight. She was helped by an accomplice, Terry DePew. Apparently their plan was to split the insurance money.
But what made the case unusual was the various ways the duo had earlier tried to off the husband, without success:
feeding him pie containing tarantula venom
throwing a live electric cord into the shower with him
Victor Barker, born Lillias Irma Valerie Barker (1895–1960), who also went by the pseudonyms John Hill and Geoffrey Norton, was a transgender man who is notable for having married a woman. He was an officer of the National Fascisti, a bankrupt and a convicted criminal.
The photo below captures the moment a wolf started to attack the face of its trainer, Jacques Suzanne, during the filming of a movie. The camera crew, thinking the attack was part of the stunt, kept on filming.
Suzanne evidently wasn't badly hurt, though the wolf was killed. Apparently he was the kind of guy who knew how to defend himself against a wolf. Read more about him in Adirondack Life magazine.
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.