Weird Universe Archive

April 2009

April 17, 2009

Agadoo

Voted the worst UK pop song ever!

Posted By: Paul - Fri Apr 17, 2009 - Comments (3)
Category: Contests, Races and Other Competitions, Ineptness, Crudity, Talentlessness, Kitsch, and Bad Art, Music, Europe

How to Tell the Birds from the Flowers

As children, my sibs and I were utterly fascinated by this weird little book. We studied the drawing for hours. Now you can too, thanks to the magic of the internet!

Posted By: Paul - Fri Apr 17, 2009 - Comments (2)
Category: Animals, Nature, Books, 1900s

[News] Chuck’s Links for Friday, April 17, 2009

[Ed.: and maybe it's just me, but these all sound like Recurring Themes]

Yet another variety of DUI: joyriding a steamroller while drunk (Bonus: The cop said he could tell that the 'roller was "weaving" all over the road). KTBC-TV (Austin, Tex.)

Shot in the chest, but saved when the bullet couldn't penetrate the . . wad of money she had stuffed in her bra. Agence France-Presse via Yahoo

A convicted child molester had his stuff bitten off . . by his own self (only the tip, though; he's not that big). New York Daily News

A Louisiana man, 54, stabbed his brother, 63, in an argument over a can of pork 'n' beans. Associated Press via Yahoo

Apparently, no flashlights in Fort Dodge, Iowa: It was dark under the sofa so he used a cigarette lighter to look around. Des Moines Register

Carmen Canas, 28, burned the hell out of herself when she tried to heat the cosmetic hot wax in a microwave and didn't handle the container very well taking it out, which of course is the cosmetics company's fault, said her lawyer. WPIX-TV (New York City)

A Kenyan man prevailed in a three-hour,.life-or-death struggle with a 13-ft-long python that had actually dragged him up a tree and was preparing to swallow him (but the man used his shirt to block the snake's mouth) (Yikes). BBC News

[Jury Duty] Lawrence Hembd [yeah, Hembd], 40, Port Orchard, Wash., might be testimony for the proposition that meth muddles one's sense of fashion. Kitsap Sun (Kitsap, Wash.)

[Jury Duty Bonus] Let's hope the next 21 yrs aren't as rough on the face of Joshua Griffin, 21, Galveston, Tex., as the first 21 have apparently been for the alleged purse-snatcher. KRIV-TV (Houston)

Today's Newsrangers: Max Simms, Cindy Hildebrand, Stephen Taylor, Kathryn Wood, Bruce Alter

Posted By: Chuck - Fri Apr 17, 2009 - Comments (7)
Category:

April 16, 2009

Training for Failure

I wonder what would have happened had Dr. Sherman's plan been put into action? It would certainly relieve stress -- and provide a much more realistic view of the world -- if we were all taught from day one to accept our mediocrity. Reported in the Newark Advocate, Dec. 1, 1936:

Training for Failure
It seems that parents are wrong in counseling their youngsters to study hard and aim for the presidency.
Anyway, Dr. Mandel Sherman, mental hygiene specialist at the University of Chicago, advises that young people be trained to become failures, in the ordinary sense of the word.
"Our educational system is suffering from an overdose of success stories," he contends. "One person in 10 is neurotic, one in 22 insane today because we train only for success. And only a few can be successful from a material standpoint."
Youth perhaps should be taught that a successful life need not include fame and riches. But history, studded with instances of handicapped youngsters who fought their way to success, indicates that it would be difficult to get the younger generation to bow its head to the inevitability of failure.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 16, 2009 - Comments (19)
Category: School, Self-help Schemes, Psychology

Blackfly

Posted By: Paul - Thu Apr 16, 2009 - Comments (4)
Category: Insects and Spiders, Music, Cartoons, North America

Florida Skunk Ape

Who knew that Chuck's state boasted its own Bigfoot, in the form of the Florida Skunk Ape?



Posted By: Paul - Thu Apr 16, 2009 - Comments (7)
Category: Cryptozoology, Regionalism

[News] Chuck’s Links for Thursday, April 16, 2009

Bizarro World: (1) Two yrs ago, a little girl saved the life of her 84-yr-old landlady, and now the woman's relatives are evicting the girl's family. (2) If you work for the state of Massachusetts and also deploy with the Massachusetts Nat'l Guard, you get both salaries; if your Guard unit deploys to Iraq, though, you get only the higher of the two salaries. (Seriously.) (3) East St. Louis, Ill., cop Kristopher Weston, 28, apprehended a high-profile murder suspect so impressively that he was called before the City Council for praise . . and five minutes later, the Council voted a list of police layoffs that included Kristopher Weston. Chicago Sun-Times /// Boston Globe /// St. Louis Post-Dispatch

You'd think a Border Patrol agent trying to smuggle in illegal tortoises would know the law better than to disguise the shipment as "scorpions" (since they also are usually illegal). Reuters via MSNBC

An Ontario man with an auto-immune disease that has impaired his vision, swollen up his hands, and left him often in morphine-level pain, has been spotted by an insurance investigator during a couple of his better days, thus encouraging his employer to order him back to work . . in his job as a bus driver. Canoe.ca

A Hong Kong maid was accused of trying to poison her boss, but it was all a misunderstanding because she was only adding menstrual blood to the boss's soup, and everybody knows menstrual blood can only help things. Agence France-Presse via Yahoo

Jennifer Madrigal filed a complaint against Guadalupe Andrade in Ogden, Utah, for putting a curse on her (imminent auto accident!), but Madrigal's OK because she hired a witch doctor who saved her with the ol' magic egg ritual. KSL-TV (Salt Lake City)

Awesome multitasking: driving (80 mph) while having sex (real sex, too, not just oral). Agence France-Presse via Yahoo

Update: Our old friend Steve Rocco, once the strangest elected official in California, finally went to trial this week for that petty theft (stealing ketchup from a Chapman University dining hall). Associated Press via Yahoo

[Jury Duty] OK, here are John Kincaid (top) and Christopher Fitzgerald, who stand accused of holding up a dirty-video store in Kilgore, Tex., and the question for you is: Assuming they're guilty, which of the two came up with the idea? TheSmokingGun.com

Today's Newsrangers: Dean Larson, Kathryn Wood, Emory Kimbrough

Posted By: Chuck - Thu Apr 16, 2009 - Comments (13)
Category:

Transparent Face Mask

From Popular Science, March 1940:

Slipped over the head, a bag of cellulose tissue designed for use in skiing and other outdoor sports offers protection for the face without interfering with vision. The transparent mask can also be used as a shower cap, an apron, a tray cover, and a turban, the makers say.

Maybe it didn't interfere with vision, but the interfering with breathing probably posed a problem.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 16, 2009 - Comments (7)
Category: Inventions, Products, 1940s

April 15, 2009

First Ever WU-vention!

Okay, it's not yet as big and popular as Burning Man, but the first gathering of WU-vies has occured. KW, Jules and Madd Maxx chose to meet recently. And here's photographic proof.

Syrup shortages were reported in the region throughout the following week.



More in extended >>

Posted By: Paul - Wed Apr 15, 2009 - Comments (37)
Category: Conventions, Daredevils, Stuntpeople and Thrillseekers, Food, Human Marvels, Obsessions, Photography and Photographers, Restaurants, Signage, Subcultures, Public Indecency, Sex Symbols, Reader Recommendation, Bohemians, Beatniks, Hippies and Slackers

California State Fair—1913

Sorry about that failed post earlier today. The host seems to have deleted that video. Thanks go to Expat47 for bringing the matter to my notice.

Nonetheless, I've found the essential bit: the train collision.

Enjoy!

Posted By: Paul - Wed Apr 15, 2009 - Comments (5)
Category: Destruction, Fairs, Amusement Parks, and Resorts, 1910s, Trains

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Who We Are
Alex Boese
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.

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 Shepherd
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.

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