Weird Universe Archive

July 2023

July 31, 2023

Bunny bandit

Brilliant disguise:

Police said a man who robbed a convenience store early Friday wore a white bunny head with the face cut out.

Ellwood City Ledger - Aug 28, 1993

Posted By: Alex - Mon Jul 31, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Stupid Criminals, 1990s

Punch and Judy:  The Opera

The Wikipedia page for the opera.

The work caused great controversy with members of the audience, because of the violence of the plot and the nature of the music. Benjamin Britten was reported to have left the premiere at the interval.[3]


The composer's Wikipedia page.

Birtwistle's music is complex, written in a modernistic manner with a clear, distinctive voice, with sounds described as of "sonic brashness".[10]


Your reactions solicited.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Jul 31, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Music, Avant Garde, Myths and Fairytales, 1960s

July 30, 2023

Cocoaine for the hair

I'm sure cocaine would soothe an irritated scalp, but I can't imagine why it would cure dandruff.

Munsey's Magazine - 1898

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jul 30, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Drugs, Nineteenth Century, Hair and Hairstyling

July 29, 2023

Portable Fish Farm

Text from The Los Angeles Times (Oct 1, 1971):

LONDON — A major exhibition by 11 Los Angeles artists was postponed at Hayward Gallery here Thursday in a controversy involving titled officials, a show business star, the press, and a people who pride themselves on their love for animals.

An international flap over fish.

Artist Newton Harrison's "Portable Fish Farm" is an ecological work about growth and life cycles. Six large tanks contain lobster, crayfish, oysters, brine shrimp and catfish, dominating a large upper room of the government-owned gallery.

The catfish—200 of them—were shipped here live from El Centro, Calif. Harrison wanted to demonstrate man's ability to haul food great distances and harvest it in a new environment. Some catfish were to lay eggs; some were to mature during the showing. Others were to be cooked at an opening feast for 250 guests, to prove Harrison's idea that "all art is about survival."

Fish, to be cooked, must be killed. Harrison wanted people to see the process as part of his exhibition.

The killing part hooked the British press. Advance stories ignored almost everything except the "ritual execution" of catfish. That news triggered a reaction nearly incomprehensible outside animal-loving England.

Confused readers called papers to protest the "bludgeoning" of innocent cats. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was moved to "deplore" any public catfish killing.

British comedian Spike Milligan, famous for his work on "The Goon Show," carried his protest to the gallery itself. He threw a hammer through the front window Thursday morning.


More info: The Harrison Studio

Images from Google Arts & Culture:





Posted By: Alex - Sat Jul 29, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Art, Food, 1970s

July 28, 2023

Miss Radioactive

In 1955, two women (Jeanne Baird and Sandy Hershey) were separately named "Miss Radioactive." I can't find any evidence of this title being used before or after 1955.

They both seem to be displaying the same type of radiation detector — a scintillometer. If, like me, you weren't aware of the difference between a Geiger counter and a scintillometer, you can read about it here.

Los Angeles Evening Citizen News - Feb 14, 1955



Casper Star Tribune - June 24, 1955

Posted By: Alex - Fri Jul 28, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests, Atomic Power and Other Nuclear Matters, 1950s

July 27, 2023

Nudist Crossing Ahead

1965: The police ordered Bernard Patenaude to taken down his "Warning, nudist crossing ahead" sign, claiming that it was an illegal form of traffic regulation. (If that's so, wouldn't those "Slow, children at play" signs found all over the place also, technically, be illegal?)

Hartford Courant - Sep 14, 1965



Alliance (Neb.) Daily Times Herald - Nov 2, 1965


Posted By: Alex - Thu Jul 27, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Signage, Nudism and Nudists, 1960s

The Great Cheiro

The late part of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century were filled with occult types, most famously Aleister Crowley. But I had not previously encountered Cheiro.

His Wikipedia page is here.

You can read his palmistry book here.





And luckily, in 1979, Cheiro (died 1936) conducted a long conversation with another medium. Read it here.







Posted By: Paul - Thu Jul 27, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Frauds, Cons and Scams, New Age, Supernatural, Occult, Paranormal, Nineteenth Century, Twentieth Century

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