Weird Universe Blog — September 3, 2018

Heinz Help Fruit Drink

Heinz's venture into the beverage market during the mid-1970s with its Help Fruit Drink only lasted a few years. The fact that Heinz is so associated with ketchup probably didn't 'help' the product. But also, what an odd name 'Help' was.

Posted By: Alex - Mon Sep 03, 2018 - Comments (0)
Category: Food | 1970s

September 2, 2018

Most Expensive Ice Cream Sundae

Advertising it as "the world's most expensive ice cream sundae," this is what Three Twins Ice Cream will give you in exchange for $60,000:

Travel to the summit of Africa's highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro, where Three Twins Ice Cream's founder will hand-churn a batch of ice cream with glacial ice from the mountain's summit. The mountain's glaciers are predicted to disappear within the next 10-15 years due to climate change - and your purchase helps raise awareness of this fact with a five-figure contribution to an African environmental non-profit. The sundae's price also includes first class airfare to Tanzania, five-star accommodations, a guided climb, as much ice cream as you can eat and a souvenir t-shirt made from organic cotton.

Posted By: Alex - Sun Sep 02, 2018 - Comments (9)
Category: Overpriced Merchandise

Sparky’s Hazard House

Although not as famous as McGruff the Crime Dog, Sparky the Fire Dog has been around for a while.

I am particularly interested in his "house of death by incineration" diorama.

Apparently you can still purchase one from this company.

You might also want their Hazard Farm model.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Sep 02, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Anthropomorphism | Death | Destruction | Domestic | Education | Corporate Mascots, Icons and Spokesbeings | Children | 1950s

September 1, 2018

Macaroni woman of the year

Since I posted a few days ago about eggplants that looked like Richard Nixon, I thought it only fitting to also note that his wife, Patricia, had her own food thing going on. In 1970, she was named Macaroni Woman of the Year by the National Macaroni Institute. She also had her portrait painted out of macaroni by the artist Don Wheeler.

Redlands Daily Facts - Oct 1, 1970

Wilkes Barre Times Leader - Apr 14, 1971

Posted By: Alex - Sat Sep 01, 2018 - Comments (4)
Category: Art | Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests | Food | Politics

Wisteria Princesses

Wisteria Princesses. L to R: Christine Dinwiddie, 15, Linda Nehls, 17, Janet Dickson, 15, Susan Glass, 15, and Meredith Mitchell, 17, princesses of the 1958 Wisteria Vine Festival, Sierra Madre.


Posted By: Paul - Sat Sep 01, 2018 - Comments (0)
Category: Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues | Parades and Festivals | 1950s

August 31, 2018

Falling Sheep

Yesterday, Paul mentioned the threat posed by cows. It's worth remembering that sheep can be pretty dangerous too. As this hiker in Ireland recently found out when, out of the blue, he was hit by a falling sheep. Both the hiker and the sheep seem to have survived the incident.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Aug 31, 2018 - Comments (3)
Category: Accidents | Animals

Potato Candy

Which recipe do you prefer? In either case, be sure to whip some up for St. Patrick's Day--or anytime you want tuber-based sweets!


Posted By: Paul - Fri Aug 31, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Candy | 1930s

August 30, 2018

Gibbon Diet

In order to raise awareness and funds for the Gibbon Protection Society of Malaysia, Grace Watson is spending a month eating only what a gibbon would eat. From

Most days Watson will have scrambled eggs for breakfast with spirulina or herbal tea.
Lunch is usually a variation of apples, bananas, mandarin, and edible insects, while dinner is limited to vegetable soups, salads or slaws of grated beetroot, carrot, apple, with a squeeze of lime and some seeds...
Although she would like to entirely commit to the animals' diet in order to draw attention to the endangered primates, she cannot consume leaves like they can. "I'm unable to do that as part of my diet because humans can't break down nutrients like gibbons do from leaves," Watson conceded.

While it seems like a fine cause, it seems to me like it's cheating just a bit to eat cooked food.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Aug 30, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Animals | Food | Dieting and Weight Loss

Hero Dog of the Year

In 1954, Ken-L Ration Dog Food began awarding a prize to the "Hero Dog of the Year." Sponsorship switched to Kibbles 'n' Bits at some point.

Here is a list of some winners.

The latest year I can find when the award was given was 2004.

The American Humane Society seems to have taken over, or rebooted the award.

In any case, the award gives us a chance here at WU to carry forward one of our earliest missions: proving that cows are the most evil and deadly creature on the planet.

Article behind NYT paywall, alas.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Aug 30, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Animals | Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests | Dogs | 1950s | 1980s

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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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