The wikipedia article on Oxford anthropologist Arthur Thomson (1858-1935) notes that he's best remembered for formulating Thomson's Nose Rule, which states that ethnic groups from cold climates tend to have thinner noses than groups from hot climates.
Apparently he's not remembered for his "Women Are Like Apes" theory, which he presented to a meeting of the Royal Academy of Sciences in 1927. The basis of this theory was that, "woman's legs are usually shorter, and her arms longer, than man's" — and this, Thomson felt, made women more ape-like.
I was curious whether Thomson was actually correct about female body proportions, and after some googling I've concluded that he probably was — at least about women (on average) having shorter legs as a proportion of their total height than men do. See, for instance, this article by a designer of bicycles for women, which says that's the case.
If you look at a map of South Dakota, you can see that the western border isn't perfectly straight. Right where Wyoming, Montana, and South Dakota meet, the border jogs inward a little bit.
The story goes (which I've found in several sources) that this isn't how it was supposed to be. The border was supposed to run straight down the 27th meridian, but the surveyors messed up. The lines they ran from north and south didn't meet up properly, and to fix the error they just made the border jog in slightly, as it does, in order to connect the two lines.
I stumbled on this forgotten strip while browsing through old newspapers online. Apparently it was a weekly feature. Its boneheaded surreal literalism is right up there with Bushmiller's Nancy and Soglow's The Little King.
Not much to be learned about its creator, Courtney Dunkel, beyond what you can read at the link.
(Chuck channels the spirits of his landmark 1980-1996 zine)
June 22, 2016 (released June 23, 2016)
World's Greatest Lawyer: Chris Dyer, in La Crosse, Wis., convinced a jury that there was "reasonable doubt" when a 17-yr-old resident came home and found Dyer's client in the basement, pants down, perched doggy-style over the resident's doggy (the golden retriever Cooper) and then quickly rose and pulled his pants up. (The 17-yr-old told her dad, "[T]here was a man in our house screwing Cooper.") Attorney Dyer got the client Daniel Reinsvold off on dog-molesting charges, convincing the jury to settle for trespass and disorderly conduct. (Reinsvold testified to an "intestinal disorder" that makes him have "emergencies." OK, but, still, if that's what was happening, hey, show us the poop. (There was no poop.) Plus, the vet said Cooper had Doggy-PTSD symptoms.) [La Crosse Tribune]
Perspective: Using a drone, pro-choice activists in the Irish Republic (penalty for aiding abortion: 14 yrs) flew abortion medications (Mifepristone, Misoprostol) over the border to their counterparts in Northern Ireland (penalty for abortion: ummm, well, death penalty). [Belfast Telegraph]
Y'Know What's Really Weird? Two weeks ago, we learned that Mark Zuckerberg got his social media accounts hacked b/c he broke the rules and used the same password. [NBC News] It says here that at last count, there were at least 11,000 "security" cameras in the U.S. that were not certified as "secured." [NetworkWorld.com] Then, the U.S. Air Force revealed that it had lost the entire fraud-investigation database (no backups--um, as if, well, why would we have backup?) dating from 2004 (though it now says some civilian hackers were working on recovery). [Air Force Times] Back in December, the Federal Trade Commission, which had re-sued LifeLock (you know those guys, right?) for not protecting customers' sensitive information very well, caught 'em again. ("Hey, LifeLock, don't you have, like, one job?") (They had agreed in 2010 to step up security, but now will have to pony up $113m.) [Wall Street Journal] So, really, folks. It's just the Wild West. Best Answer: Go hop in bed and pull the covers up real tight, and try not to think about it.
The Passing Parade (I): Every 5 yrs they have a World Nose Championship in Bavaria, and this year is the lucky year. With actual calipers they measure length and width (and Hans Roest won) (No announcement of marital status, ladies, but c'mon, he must be single.) [The Local (Berlin)] The Passing Parade (II): There's a band named Stone Roses with quite a few fans, 90 of whom bid on eBay for a sealed jar purporting to have captured the air during a recent concert in Manchester, England (with the top bid £65k, which is about US$96,700). (Hold the jar to your ear and experience the "faint reverberation" of guitarist John Squire's solo.) [Daily Telegraph] The Passing Parade--Everyone's Got a Gig.
The theme of Malaysian designer Moto Guo's "Picnic in the Society" fashion show was flaws, including skin flaws. All his models sported facial acne (apparently cosmetically created) as they walked down the runway.
Dip the bill in liquid ammonia, then let it dry. Repeat this a few times, and you'll end up with a mini-sized bill.
Of course, most people don't have liquid ammonia lying around the house. So this is a trick only mad chemists can do.
I'm sure that shrinking a bill would be considered defacement of currency and therefore illegal. However, defaced currency remains legal tender (depending on the degree of defacement), so in theory you could still spend your tiny bill, but it would probably be difficult finding a store willing to accept it.
Posted By: Alex - Wed Jun 22, 2016 -
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.
Chuck is the purveyor of News of the Weird, the syndicated column which for decades has set the gold-standard for reporting on oddities and the bizarre.
Our banner was drawn by the legendary underground cartoonist Rick Altergott.