An historic building in the Boston Commons has been repurposed as an Earl of Sandwich sandwich shop. Normally that would not be of great interest, except for the previous use for the building. It was a public restroom in the past and has been padlocked closed and left in disrepair for years. So, is a kitchen in a former public restroom too much of a gross out?
Several pieces of art have been left on the moon during the missions to its surface. These are the two that I'm aware of, though there may be more:
Moon Museum — a tiny piece of ceramic wafer on which six artists (Robert Rauschenberg, David Novros, John Chamberlain, Claes Oldenburg, Forrest Myers, and Andy Warhol) drew pictures. It was attached to a leg of the Intrepid landing module (though this was never confirmed by NASA) which landed on the moon and was left there in November 1969. Warhol contributed the rocket/penis in the upper-left corner.
Fallen Astronaut — An aluminum sculpture of a humanoid figure that's supposed to represent an astronaut in a spacesuit. It was left on the surface of the moon on August 1, 1971, next to a plaque listing astronauts and cosmonauts who died in the advancement of space exploration.
So we've left a picture of a penis on the moon, as well as a sexless humanoid figure. I wonder if this will confuse future alien archaeologists who find the art.
New Zealand has a national drinking day called National Crate Day. During which revelers are challenged drink one dozen 745 mil. bottles of beer. This years celebration in Christchurch ended with police called out by homeowners to rein in the drunken partiers. The unruly drunks were hearded down the street and out of the neighborhood by athorities. Who could have seen that coming?
Durian is reputed to be the stinkiest fruit in the world, so researchers at the German Research Center for Food Chemistry recently set out to find out exactly what makes it so malodorous. They write in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry:
The sensory properties of fresh durian combine a pleasant creamy consistency, a pronounced sweet taste, and a strong, penetrating odor, not comparable to that of any other kind of fruit. The aroma profile can be best described as a combination of an intense sulfury, roasted onion-like odor with fruity, sweet, caramel-like, and soup seasoning-like notes. In Southeast Asia, durian is deeply appreciated and often referred to as the “king of fruits”, whereas some people in the Western hemisphere regard the durian odor as offensive and nauseous. The unique odor properties of durian have repeatedly attracted the attention of chemists... Despite the quite high number of studies on durian volatiles, it is still unclear which odorants predominately contribute to its aroma. Therefore, our aim was to systematically assess the odor contribution of individual durian volatiles.
Their investigation involved a) shipping Durian by air freight from Thailand to Germany; b) extracting pulp from the fruit; and then c) analyzing the pulp by means of a "Trace GC Ultra gas chromatograph" equipped with a "tailor-made sniffing port":
The sniffing port consisted of a cylindrically shaped aluminum device (105 mm × 24 mm diameter) with a beveled top and a central drill hole (2 mm) housing the capillary. It was mounted on a heated (200 °C) detector base of the GC. During a GC-O run, the panelist placed her/his nose closely above the top of the sniffing port and evaluated the odor of the effluent. If an odor was perceived, the retention time was marked in the FID chromatogram printed by a recorder and the odor quality was noted.
This effort yielded "several new aroma compounds with interesting odors," but the authors of the study caution that further investigations are still required in order to "unequivocally assess the contribution of individual odorants to durian aroma."
News of the Weird DailyWeekly Bi-DailyBi-Weekly. . .Who Knows? December 2, 2012
Holiday, Fla.: Abraham Luna, answering for his naked crime spree last week, justified his nudity with The Rule: “When two men are going to fight, the one that’s naked usually wins.” Good to know. Tampa Bay Times
Spokane, Wash.: Playful mental patient Amber Roberts, 30, admitted she had just murdered a fellow patient, “but you’re [the authorities] going to have to find him,” by which she meant, start looking, and I’ll go “Hot,” “Cold,” “Warmer,” etc. AP via KATU-TV (Portland, Ore.)
Havana: Updating [from NOTW M020, 8-26-2007] Cuba’s Danza Voluminosa, composed of the island’s lithest human-whale ballerinas in tutus, in this delightful photo spread World’s Greatest Newspaper
Charlottesville, Va.: Mall cops on the job, grabbing that child abductor and . . . and . . . escorting him off the property (“catch-and-release”?) WVIR-TV
Hamburg, Germany: They’re “99.999 percent certain” it was a suicide, the cops said, of the man found shot in the head, inside a rucksack full of rocks and fastened with cable ties. (Lieu said he was probably perched on a bridge, inside the sack, just open enough at the top between the ties to stick his arm out and shoot himself, then drop the gun so it wouldn’t be found after he and it fell into the Elbe River.) TheLocal.de (Berlin)
Philadelphia: A state Supreme Court investigation acknowledged that Philly traffic court judges routinely and promiscuously fix tickets and seemed to suggest, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer, that anyone who paid a full-price ticket was just being lazy. Philadelphia Inquirer
Lakeland, Fla.: “Tighten up on your job, homie.” That was thief Patrick Townsend smart-assin’ Detective Justin Starr after Townsend had just flushed Starr’s digital recorder (the one with Townsend’s confession) down a toilet without Starr realizing it. The Ledger
Department of Homeland Security: The inspector general says DHS has spent $430m since 9-11 to provide radios with a common, secure channel to make emeregency communications easy for its 123,000 employees (i.e., sounds kinda important!). The IG asked 479 employees at random to find the channel, and only one could. ProPublica.org
Jury Duty: If you’re a defense lawyer, how do you make Hank Williams, 46, look innocent in court (of “aggravated stalking” by making “vulgar tongue gestures” toward a woman)? Johnson City Press (Johnson City, Tenn.)
Editor’s Note: I’m not necessarily “back,” but let’s try this. Personally, I’m older, sicker, slower, uglier, and stupider than I used to be, but maybe the theory is that makes me more interesting. (Just a theory.)
Posted By: Chuck - Sun Dec 02, 2012 -
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 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.
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