Weird Universe

May 12, 2009

They Had That Back Then? #2

Today's lesson: Musical Ring Tones.

(from the May 1956 issue of Popular Science)
Posted By: Salamander Sam | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (5)
Category: Inventions, Music, Technology, 1950's, Yesterday's Tomorrows

Your Daily Jury Duty:  Midwest Division; May 12th 2009

Joliet, Ill
Dennis Lee Garthus, or “Pantielover” as he is known by his screen name, has been arrested on child pornography charges. Garthus is registered sex offender in Illinois for previous crimes of child pornography and criminal sexual assault. Investigators found over 2000 illegal pornographic images on his computer. He faces up to 20 years in prison.

Photo from the Illinois Sex Offender Registry

Chicago Breaking News
Illinois Sex Offender Registry
Posted By: chris_cantwell | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (8)

A Little Light Weirdness

First up is a story I have been trying to track down for over a week. Chichester Town Council in the UK were unable to remove a garbage bin that had been illegally dumped in a four-inch deep stream, because they did not have anyone qualified to use wellington boots (Chichester Observer).

The three man crew of a specially eco-refitted yacht, had to be rescued from hurricane force gales on the outward leg of a voyage billed as the "Carbon Neutral Expedition" and designed to raise awareness of green issues. Their rescuer? An oil-tanker delivering 680,000 barrels of crude (The Guardian).

The CEO of the company that supplies and installs most of the speed cameras for the UK Highways Agency has been banned from driving for six months after he was caught speeding at over 100 mph (The Times).

Sikhs serving in the UK police force are looking to develop a bulletproof turban so that they can meet the requirement to wear protective headgear of the force's armed response units without having to break their religious prohibition not to remove them (The Telegraph).

Finally, plans for a Berlin Monument of National Unity, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall, had to be scrapped after the spoilsport jury rejected all the entries as too weird. Not one of the 538 submissions from members of the public, which included a 30 meter high gilded banana, a German version of the Statue of Liberty holding a Rubik's cube, a group of Smurfs dancing on a recreation of a section of the wall, and a giant statue of a man pushing a shopping trolley, was accepted. The jury has now invited contributions from selected professional artists (The National).
Posted By: Dumbfounded | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (6)
Category: Art, Government, Regulations, Oceans and Maritime Pursuits, Religion

This Ain’t Star Trek XXX, but it looks like it

With all great films come the pornographic remake and Star Trek is no different. I came across the trailer on youtube, which is safe for work, but has a couple suggestive scenes. Now without further ado:

Posted By: mdb777 | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (5)
Category: Movies, Sex

a Not So Bright Lawyer Gets the Boot..Denver Style

Bangor Maine police applied the immobilization device called the Denver Boot after at least three parking tickets went unpaid. While not exactly a world-class scofflaw, Michael Harman did what few have tried before. He attempted to drive with the boot still attached to the wheel of his truck.

Bangor Daily News
Posted By: hickory_johnson | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (3)

Some Food Related Weirdness

Chocolate, you can eat it, drink it, even inhale it, and now you can run a car on it as boffins from the University of Warwick in the UK have designed a "Formula 3" racing car that runs on chocolate oil. As an added bonus, the car's body was made from potatoes (BBC News).

Meanwhile, in Bethlehem PA, Hipolito Junior Vasquez is the main suspect in a string of burglaries where the perpetrator elected to also vandalise his victims' apartments by smearing the walls with paint and chocolate pudding. Police first suspected Vasquez was their man when he was apprehended red brown handed, covered in chocolate sauce (LeHigh Valley Live).

And if that wasn't enough, a current UK advertising campaign for "Mikado" biscuits has raised some eyebrows and quite a few hackles after it depicted a secretary inadvertently taking 'upskirt' photocopies of herself while trying to reach a box of the apparently irresistible snacks, just as her boss walks in on her. The British agency responsible for advertising standards said it had received 141 complaints, but admitted that it was powerless to act as the item adhered to all the guidelines concerning high-fat foods, and was not shown at a time when it might be viewed by minors (The Sun - includes video).

According to Bon Appetit magazine, there are a number of "superfoods" that have been shamefully overlooked by most dieticians, and the top disregarded superfood is... bacon. Their argument is that 45% of bacon's fat is of the monounsaturated type that is supposed to actually lower cholesterol, and moreover half of that is the same type, oleic acid, found in ultra-healthy olive oil. Hence, it is claimed, bacon might really be half as healthy as olives and 100 times as delicious (Bon Appetit).

And bacon is not just good for your heart, your head could benefit as well. According to Dr. Elin Roberts of the "Centre for Life" in Newcastle, England, bacon is just the thing to cure a hangover. Bacon, with the obligatory side of eggs, provides just the cholesterol, amino acids and amines needed to cure the headache, stiffness and nausea brought about by a night of overindulgence, Roberts suggests. Let's hope he hasn't been a bit rasher (News Blaze).

With bacon now well established as the wonderfood of tomorrow, it is perhaps very prescient of three American entrepreneurs to launch the next must have product, "Wake n'Bacon". Simply place a frozen strip of bacon in the Wake n' Bacon the night before, and 10 minutes before the desired waking time, two halogen lights come on to slow cook the bacon to perfection, hence waking you with the delicious smell of bacon. Pure, pure genius (

In a late-breaking bacon bonus (cheers Matt), the healthy and healing wonder-meat might also be a future source of planet saving bio-diesel. Husband and wife team Dan and Tracy Kaderabek have formed Bio-Blend Fuels, a company that takes the fat that drips off pre-cooked bacon as it is microwaved and converts it into a carbon-neutral, smoke free fuel. As an added bonus, the exhaust smells like cooking bacon, thereby making the world a happier place (HTR News).
Posted By: Dumbfounded | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (11)
Category: Design and Designers, Food, Health, Stupid Criminals, Advertising

Heaven Help A Sailor

Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (4)
Category: Movies, Music, Oceans and Maritime Pursuits, Sexuality, 1940's, South Pacific, Tattoos

Sunflower Carnival

What is weirder? The fact that our ancestors dedicated a festival to the humble sunflower, or the fact that we don't?

In any case, here are some shots from the 1899 Sunflower Carnival Parade, Colorado Springs, Colorado, courtesy of the Library of Congress.

As always, click to enlarge.

image image

image image

image image

image image
Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (5)
Category: Agriculture, Parades and Festivals, Political Correctness, Regionalism, Nineteenth Century

Mill Ends Park

In the middle of Portland, Oregon there is a small oasis of weirdness called Mill Ends Park. According to Wikipedia, Mill Ends Park:

is a small park that was created on St. Patrick's Day, 1948, to be a colony for leprechauns and a location for snail races. It is the smallest park in the world, according to the Guinness Book of Records, which first granted it this recognition in 1971. The park is a circle 2 ft (0.61 m) across, with a total area of 452 sq in (0.292 m2), in a traffic median which in 1948 was intended to be the site for a light pole.

I've never been to Portland, but if I ever make it up there, I'll make a point to visit this park.
Posted By: Alex | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (4)
Category: Nature, Urban Life

Your Daily Loser & Jury Duty for May 12th

Your Daily Loser - During an argument back in October of 2006, Chytoria Graham picked up her infant son and swung him like a baseball bat, hitting her boyfriend, and fracturing the baby's skull (the boy survived). She was sentenced to 10 years in prison. So why is she back in the news? Because Chytoria is appealing her sentence and claims the public defenders who represented her at trial were ineffective. She's also just been released on bail.

Jury Duty - Some people just don't see the line between acceptable and not acceptable. Todd Marcum, of Salem, Oregon, is one of those people. Marcum was arrested for putting an electronic, shocking dog collar on his children. And not because they were misbehaving, but because he thought it was funny. The Story. // The Mugshot.
Posted By: Nethie | Date: Tue May 12, 2009 | Comments (5)
Category: Babies, Crime, Domestic, Family, Your Daily Jury Duty, Your Daily Loser, Goofs and Screw-ups
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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2008 by the author of the post, 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.