Weird Universe Blog — September 15, 2023

The Wozard of Iz

A 1960s, Moog-synthesizer parody of the Wizard of Oz.

Wikipedia quotes Kim Cooper who described it as, "the pinnacle of the rather small genre of psychedelic Wizard of Oz-themed albums."

Detroit Free Press - Dec 20, 1968

Posted By: Alex - Fri Sep 15, 2023 - Comments (1)
Category: Music | 1960s | Parody

September 14, 2023

Death Sand

Radiological warfare is the use of radiation as a weapon. "Death Sand" is a variant of this — the use of irradiated sand as a weapon. Details from Popular Science, Feb 1951.

Prof. Hans Thirring of Vienna proposes drying a solution of the RW [radiological warfare] agent upon sand, or metal powder. Naming the preparation "death sand," he calls it "the lightest and most transportable of all weapons of mass destruction."

Airplanes for "death-sand" attacks could resemble those used for crop dusting and spreading fertilizer from the air. A British plane for the latter purpose has dropped five tons of chemicals in a single experimental flight.

To protect occupants from the cargo's radioactivity a death-sand plane would need heavy shielding. (After calculating its weight, one scientist suggested dropping the shielding instead of the RW agent on the enemy!) But shielding could be omitted if crewless planes, under radio control from accompanying aircraft, laid the sand.

Troops in an area sprinkles with death sand will have no choice but to get out. Those who remain will receive a fatal dose in anywhere from a few hours to several weeks, depending on the intensity of the radioactivity. Like victims of A-bomb radiation, they will suffer nausea, loss of hair, anemia, and hemorrhages. But those who flee at once will suffer no ill effects.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Sep 14, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: War | Weapons | Atomic Power and Other Nuclear Matters

The Fate of the Heart of King Louis XIV

This newspaper squib gives the essentials. But visit this page to learn more about Buckland and the incident.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Sep 14, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Body | Cannibalism | Royalty | Historical Figure

September 13, 2023

Solacen lightens the load of worry

I'd worry too if I had a giant crow standing behind me.

Circa 1967. Reproduced in The
Medical Runaround (1973) by Andrew Malleson.

Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 13, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Advertising | 1960s | Mental Health and Insanity

What a Wonderful Thing Is Me

If the music doesn't put you to sleep, you will learn all about your various parts.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Sep 13, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Music | PSA’s | Cartoons | 1970s

September 12, 2023

Healing Mummified Hand

Although the mummified hand supposedly healed 500 people, I've only been able to find one description of a "cure":

One old lady who had been unable to raise her paralysed arm above her heart for ten years was one of the pilgrims who tested it, and in three days she was able to raise her helpless arm over her head.

Saskatoon Phoenix - Feb 8, 1928

Sydney Sunday Times - Feb 5, 1928

Posted By: Alex - Tue Sep 12, 2023 - Comments (1)
Category: Paranormal | Patent Medicines, Nostrums and Snake Oil | 1920s


Multiple copies for sale at Abebooks.

"Published by The Marine Historical Association, Inc., Mystic, CT, 1950. A brief introduction to whales."

Thanks to Richard Bleiler.

Posted By: Paul - Tue Sep 12, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Innuendo, Double Entendres, Symbolism, Nudge-Nudge-Wink-Wink and Subliminal Messages | Nature | Oceans and Maritime Pursuits | Books | Reader Recommendation

September 11, 2023

Hoover Dam music soothes mentally ill

I've visited the Hoover Dam a number of times but had never heard about its unusual acoustic properties that produce "a soothing effect on violently ill mental patients when they listen to musical recordings made at the dam site."

I searched in vain for copies of these Hoover Dam sound recordings.

Los Angeles Times - Sep 22, 1955

Posted By: Alex - Mon Sep 11, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Music | Psychology | 1950s

Tenjō Sajiki

A small sampling of the avant-garde theater of the troupe named Tenjō Sajiki. Their Wikipedia entry.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Sep 11, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Theater and Stage | Avant Garde | Asia | Twentieth Century

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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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