An unusual fad, as reported by the San Francisco Examiner, June 19, 1927:
Only the other day there came from Denver the startling news that the young women of this western city were wearing dog collars for engagement rings in lieu of the conventional band of gold, silver or diamond-set platinum. To further emphasize the departure from tradition, the girls wore this romantic token around their legs, as shown in the photograph of Miss Fay Rowe, of Denver, on this page. Thus the engagement ring-dog-collar became a garter as well as a symbol of betrothal, combining utility with romance...
The custom was started by a young woman in one of the college sororities and it spread rapidly. It was generally believed to be something entirely new in the way of betrothal tokens, but had the young woman been a careful student in her history class she would have known that the fad she started was an old one long before the Christian era was born. Jeweled anklets have been discovered in the cinerary urns of the ancient Greeks, with inscriptions which indicate they were tokens of engagement. Bracelets were also common in all ages as tokens of betrothal...
The principal objection to the dog-collar engagement token around the leg seems to be, "What's the use of wearing an engagement ring without anybody seeing it?" To which the answer is, "Nowadays a ring worn about the leg can easily be seen with the skirts of women growing shorter and shorter."
I can think of a few more objections a bride-to-be might have, other than that the dog collar wouldn't be visible.
The website for Indlovu Gin describes it, somewhat euphemistically, as "The only gin designed by the African elephant from foraged botanicals." Put in plainer language, it's gin made with elephant dung. As the AP reports:
The creators of Indlovu Gin, Les and Paula Ansley, stumbled across the idea a year ago after learning that elephants eat a variety of fruits and flowers and yet digest less than a third of it. “As a consequence, in the elephant dung, you get the most amazing variety of these botanicals,” Les Ansley said during a recent visit to their operations. “Why don’t we let the elephants do the hard work of collecting all these botanicals and we will make gin from it?” he recalled his wife suggesting.
Chinen and Raspet, a former flavorist at Soylent, are the makers of the Nonbar—an energy bar derived from a blend of three algae, including spirulina. They say algae can revolutionize the food industry, but as is typical of Silicon Valley-backed future foods, the Nonbar doesn’t reimagine eating, but disrupts it. Often, these products represent a total failure of imagination. Take, for instance, the emerging field of cultured meat, where entrepreneurs are wielding a god-like power—growing muscle tissues, practically out of thin air—to make chicken nuggets and hamburgers. The Nonbar, however, is more unusual—it stands no chance of replacing the protein we currently eat because it tastes so bad. Each dense and chewy bite is dominated by tapioca, and has a lingering chalkiness that reminds eaters of the difference between status quo and sacrifice. It is the taste, however repulsive, of reducing global emissions.
Prince Andrew has been in the news lately, but this post isn't about the various scandals besetting him. Instead, it's about the prince's brief foray into the world of art, when he was a teenager.
At the age of 17, he completed an oil painting which he titled "Canadian Landscape." It was displayed at the Windsor Festival, which was an exhibition that gathered together works related to the Royal Family from Tudor times to the present.
As I was looking at the picture, I kept thinking that it didn't visually make much sense. Of course, perhaps it was intended to be an abstract work, but out of curiosity I flipped it around, at which point it immediately made a lot more sense. At least, I think so. See below for comparison. So, I'm pretty sure that the AP archive has his picture upside-down — and it's had it that way for years.
What I wonder is if this is just a screw-up by the AP archive, or was his painting actually displayed that way? Does Prince Andrew's painting deserve a place in the WU Gallery of Art Hung Upside-Down?
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.