Weird Universe Archive

April 2013

April 7, 2013

Ferret Out The Truth

If you travel to Argentina here's a tip for you, do not buy any cheap toy poodle puppies. They are ferrets on steroids with fluffy hairdos.

Posted By: patty - Sun Apr 07, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Animals

Zippy & Me

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Yesterday, Saturday April 6, I was privileged to interview Bill Griffith, longtime weirdo and creator of Zippy the Pinhead (along with so many other great comics) at the MOCCA Fest in NYC. Here's Bill at the Fantagraphics table at MOCCA, showing off the newest Zippy collection, now available thru the link at the sidebar here.

And here we are onstage. (Photo by Phil Merkel.)


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Posted By: Paul - Sun Apr 07, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Conventions, Cult Figures and Artifacts, Comics, Surrealism, Books

What a Life!



Always good to keep your sense of humor in hard economic times.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Apr 07, 2013 - Comments (2)
Category: Money, 1940s, Europe

Blindfold Pigs

Back in 1905, celebrities of the day were asked to try to draw a pig while blindfolded. The results were printed in The Strand magazine:


Most of the names I don't recognize. But I do know Caton Woodville (middle of the second row from the top). He was an artist who specialized in war scenes, such as his rendition of the Charge of the Light Brigade. I'm guessing his paintings aren't cheap. But I wonder how much his blindfold pig would go for?

Posted By: Alex - Sun Apr 07, 2013 - Comments (5)
Category: Art, 1900s

April 6, 2013

Do the Peg Leg!

The "peg-leg" was a brief dance craze back in 1953. To do the peg leg, a man simply wore a wooden leg over his right leg as he danced with his partner. The dance was imported from the Dominican Republic where, so the story goes, a sailor with a wooden leg once was so seized by the rhythm of the merengue that "he stood up and took part in the dancing. The people loudly applauded and imitated the clumsy and awkward dancing of the seaman. This way a new dance came into existence." [Montreal Gazette, May 1953]

Posted By: Alex - Sat Apr 06, 2013 - Comments (3)
Category: Fads, 1950s, Dance

April 5, 2013

THE GOLDBERGS







Once upon a time, sheer Jewishness was exotic enough to supply material for sitcoms and product spokesmanship.

THE GOLDBERGS.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Apr 05, 2013 - Comments (5)
Category: Ethnic Groupings, Family, Stereotypes and Cliches, Television, 1940s, 1950s

Simultaneous discovery of sheep poetry?

In science, the phenomenon of simultaneous discovery, or "multiple independent discovery," is well known. The term describes how two or more researchers often independently discover the same idea, at around the same time. For instance, both Newton and Leibniz came up with the idea of calculus in the late 17th century, and both Darwin and Wallace developed the concept of evolution by natural selection in the mid-19th century.

An example of this phenomenon might have recently occurred in the field of sheep poetry. Though whether it's simultaneous discovery or idea theft depends on whom you believe.

In 2002, Valerie Laws came up with the concept of "Quantum Sheep" or "haik-ewe." Her idea was to spray paint a different word on the backs of 15 sheep, and then watch them as they grazed in a field to see what poems would they would form. Then, last year, artist Alison Cooper came up with the same idea, though she called it "Write to Roam."

Cooper insists she was completely unaware of Laws' previous work, but Laws thinks it's more likely Cooper stole her idea, either consciously or subconsciously. Who to believe? Perhaps someone should ask the sheep what they think. [journallive.co.uk]

Posted By: Alex - Fri Apr 05, 2013 - Comments (3)
Category: Animals, Poetry

April 4, 2013

The Dopey Joes




More random "culture" from the inexplicable French.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Apr 04, 2013 - Comments (3)
Category: Contests, Races and Other Competitions, Dance, Europe

False Alarm

Residents of a Brockville, Ontario apartment building called the police when they heard someone repeatedly calling for help. The police arrived, heard the cries also, and soon located the apartment where they were coming from. They forcibly opened the door, looked inside, and saw a parrot loudly repeating the word "help" over and over again. The parrot wasn't actually in need of assistance. [Calgary Herald]

Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 04, 2013 - Comments (7)
Category: Animals

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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.

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