Weird Universe Archive

May 2013

May 16, 2013

Irish Car:  The Shamrock

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Why there is no Irish car industry today. From Wikipedia.

Shortly after production began, however, design flaws became apparent. Although the car was big and heavy, it used a relatively small Austin A55 1.5 litre engine, which limited performance. The A55 also provided the transmission and suspension. Another problem was that the rear wheels were shrouded by body panels and a rear wheel could not be removed (for puncture repair for example) without dropping its axle..... Production of up to 10,000 cars a year was talked about but as few as ten complete cars were produced during the six months before production ceased. After the factory closed, the unused parts were dumped into the local lake, Lough Muckno.

Posted By: Paul - Thu May 16, 2013 - Comments (5)
Category: Regionalism, Success & Failure, 1950s, 1960s, Europe, Cars

May 15, 2013

GI Joe in Space







After his old-school sedate debut in 1967 (first video), GI Joe's outer space adventures turned decidedly weird in the 1970s, thanks apparently to the influence of Stanley Kubrick.

Posted By: Paul - Wed May 15, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Movies, Spaceflight, Astronautics, and Astronomy, Toys, 1960s, 1970s

May 14, 2013

DNA Portraits

Artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg collects random DNA samples she finds on the street (on pieces of gum, cigarettes, hair, etc.) She then analyzes the DNA to identify the phenotypic traits of its owner (eye color, hair color, skin color, etc.). From this info, she creates a sculpture of the person, using a 3D printer. So it's possible that you could walk into her gallery and see yourself there! More info at policymic.com, or check out Dewey-Hagborg's website.


Posted By: Alex - Tue May 14, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Art, Face and Facial Expressions

May 13, 2013

Ready to Go to Mars?

If you have heard the latest buzz about going to Mars and are thinking about the trip, you should probably visit this website first.

http://www.distancetomars.com/

You get to go 3 times the speed of light for most of the trip, and the earth is 100 pixels wide. When you finally arrive at Mars, only 53 pixels wide, you will have an appreciation for just how far away Mars really is.

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This amazing website by David Paliwoda and Jesse Williams will give all of us some perspective on those who decide to go.

What would you take for the trip? (Remember, it may be a one-way ticket.)

Posted By: gdanea - Mon May 13, 2013 - Comments (4)
Category: Spaceflight, Astronautics, and Astronomy

Jesus, the Original Hipster

In an effort to make Jesus more appealing to young audiences, the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn recently came up with a new ad campaign that identifies Jesus as "the original hipster." Maybe I don't fully understand the word 'hipster,' but I didn't think it was necessarily a compliment to call someone that. [theweek.com]

Posted By: Alex - Mon May 13, 2013 - Comments (4)
Category: Religion, Advertising, Bohemians, Beatniks, Hippies and Slackers

Granular Sugar Pneumatic Conveying Test



Seven minutes of monotone narrator and watching sugar flow through a semi-opaque tube. Have we surpassed TIMBER BRIDGE INSPECTION yet?

Posted By: Paul - Mon May 13, 2013 - Comments (4)
Category: Boredom, Industry, Factories and Manufacturing

News of the Weird 2.0 (May 13, 2013)

News of the Weird 2.0
Angst, Confusion, Cynicism, Ridicule

Prime Cuts of Underreported News from Last Week, Hand-Picked and Lightly Seasoned by Chuck Shepherd
May 13, 2013
(datelines May 4-May 11) (links correct as of May 12)
© 2013 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

★ ★ ★ ★!

Gawker.com reports that a Brazilian cancer-awareness association is currently emphasizing the testicular variety and adopted as its mascot (perhaps because Lance Armstrong is no longer viable?) “Mr. Balls,” “a friendly snowman in the shape of a [huge pair],” with buck-teeth, a bowl haircut, and exaggerated hair follicle pores. Seriously. Gawker.com

Speaking of male peril, inventor Jeremiah Raber of High Ridge, Mo., has produced “Armored Nutshellz,” underwear that supposedly (i.e., he said, with straight face) seriously reduces cojon-al injuries caused by shrapnel, or even by being directly shot by a 9mm or a .22. Police, private security, and athletes are already buying the Kevlar-layered skivvies at $125 per. The deal here is imagining Raber testing it. It’s easy to see if a prototype would fail, but at some point Raber said, “Damn--this thing works!” What was that test like? KSDK-TV (St. Louis)

Ah, Diversity! Perhaps Yr Editor needs a little more grounding in Buddhism, but so would a lot of Marylanders who were befuddled on Tuesday when their governor introduced the Dalai Lama at a U of M speech by, umm, rubbing noses with him on stage. Washington Post

More Things to Worry About

Federal Special-Ed Law. All of us agree that special-needs students must be treated with sensitivity, but . . .. A 13-yr-old special-needs boy at a Houston-area school raped a 4-yr-old--twice. He pleaded to felony assault, was sentenced to 2 yrs’ probation, and is back in his school--panicking his classmates and their parents. He’d ordinarily be relegated to an “alternative” school, but federal law says if the student’s “disability” contributed to his crime, he can only be kept in alternative education for 45 days before being returned. KHOU-TV (Houston)

The ultra-progressive Bay Area Rapid Transit serving San Francisco area is finally cracking down on unpleasant riders, announcing it will issue banishment orders (hard to enforce, but still--) to people committing on-site criminal offenses. (Yes, until now, you could mug another rider and still take BART to your sentencing.) “Smaller” infractions, though, are treated leniently, e.g., every rider gets two public poops before the third movement gets him banned. SF Weekly


More in extended >>

Posted By: Chuck - Mon May 13, 2013 - Comments (6)
Category:

May 12, 2013

Where are our space helmets?

Here's another prediction of yesteryear that never panned out. Found in the Kingsport News - Apr 2, 1959:

J. McLaren Thomson, president of the National Hairdressers Federation, predicts that both men and women will have their hair short by 1999 so that they can wear space helmets. He said women will have a collection of wigs to wear with special dresses for gala occasions.

Posted By: Alex - Sun May 12, 2013 - Comments (4)
Category: Space Travel, Hair Styling, Headgear, Yesterday’s Tomorrows

Miyoko Shida Rigolo



Posted By: Paul - Sun May 12, 2013 - Comments (5)
Category: Performance Art, Natural Wonders

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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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