News of the Weird / Pro Edition
June 29, 2009 (news from June 20-27)
The St. Petersburg Times last week advanced our "religious" knowledge (Scientology being a religion in the same sense that "Steeler Nation" is a religion, except that Steelers' season tickets are much less expensive) by quoting extensively four formerly-high-ranking dropouts (who were of course immediately downgraded by the Church from "clear" to "liar!"). (It's the principle by which J. Edgar Hoover maintained power for so long: Compile dossiers on any friends who could do ya harm, 'cause one day they won't be your friends.) Yr Editor's favorite revelations: (1) Senior executives' aggressiveness was challenged by the supreme leader, android David Miscavige, who staged games of musical chairs down to the last man standing, to the tune of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody("Is this the real life? / Is this just fantasy? / Caught in a landslide / No escape from reality"). (2) It was normal procedure, that when L. Ron Hubbard himself (or now, the android) was displeased, he would take the displeasers out to sea on the church's boat, Apollo, and force them off a gangplank, while reciting "We commit your sins and errors to the deep and trust you will rise a better thetan" (only now it can be done in a swimming pool, but everyone's still fully clothed). Yr Editor forgets: Was The Church of the Subgenius a perfect parody of Scientology, or was it the other way around? St. Petersburg Times [part 3 of 3-part series; the other two are good, too] /// Church of the Subgenius
Securities Reform, One Adviser at a Time
Two formerly well-to-do German couples, whose retirement savings were all put into F State sub-prime mortgages [ed.: ROTFL!] and who thus lost nearly everything, kidnaped their investment adviser, James Amburn, and actually tortured his ass for several days at the vacation home of one of the couples. This was not that pansy-ish waterboarding torture but major, Syriana-type torture, and he was rescued only when he coded out a hostage message, and 40 cops found and freed him. The Times (London)
Can't Possibly Be True
Sharon McShurley, the mayor of Muncie, Ind., has finally, in June of 2009, put an end to her fire department's long-time protocol of delivering memos and documents from fire stations to the chief downtown by driving them there in fire trucks. Mayor McShurley identified this practice as "not an efficient operation" and ordered the department to start using e-mail. Star Press (Muncie)
This has been the weirdest month with (in)famous people dying. First, David Carradine was found dead hanging naked in a hotel closet in Thailand, then Ed McMahon dies of pneumonia, both Farah Fawcett and Michael Jackson die on the same day and now Billy Mays has sold his last tub of Oxiclean. May they all rest in peace.
Back on May 23, Over 2,000 people gathered for the Sixth Annual Mp3 Experiment. Everyone had to download the same mp3 and at exactly 4:00 pm press play. Once the opening song finished, Steve (the voice on the mp3) tells you to do some crazy stuff. Too bad I don't live in New York, because this looks like a lot of fun. Improv Everywhere
Come one come all and see the World's Ugliest Dog! Pabst, the underdog with an underbite, beat out the previous winner. Miss Ellie, a Chinese Crested Hairless, still took the pedegree catagory. As winner Pabst takes home $1600 and a modeling contract with the House of Dog. Congrats Pabst! Check out his striking visage here- http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090628/ap_on_fe_st/us_odd_world_s_ugliest_dog
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.