Weird Universe

Self-help Schemes

Dig Yourself

Sound advice--no pun intended.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sun Dec 06, 2015 | Comments (2)
Category: Music, Self-help Schemes, 1960's

Obsolete Vocations


Original ad here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sat Mar 29, 2014 | Comments (15)
Category: Self-help Schemes, Work and Vocational Training, 1920's

Three Decades of Slimming

Posted By: Paul | Date: Fri Mar 14, 2014 | Comments (5)
Category: Exercise and Fitness, Food, Self-help Schemes, 1930's, 1940's, 1950's

Are You Ready for Self-Hypnotism?

A self-help book from the 1970s. Among the problems it promised to cure:
  • How to use self-hypnosis to cure your slipped disc, backache, headache, low back pain, even the painful torticolis or "wry neck" that has defied medical science
  • How to conquer a condition we call "loneliness" but which our subconscious mind knows to be a genuine starvation of our love needs
  • Even if you've been smoking for twenty-five years you can give it up overnight—and actually enjoy the so-called "withdrawal" period
  • An entirely new and different way of controlling overweight—on a self-hypnotic diet that requires no dieting

There was also an audio version, available on vinyl, which is still for sale on Amazon.

Posted By: Alex | Date: Sun Jan 20, 2013 | Comments (2)
Category: Self-help Schemes, 1970's

Mrs. Jones’ Flesh Grower


Who knew bioengineering and stem cells were in use so long ago?

Original ad here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Wed Oct 10, 2012 | Comments (7)
Category: Body, Bodybuilding, Body Modifications, Frauds, Cons and Scams, Self-help Schemes, 1900's

Good For What Ails You


Original ad here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Thu Jul 12, 2012 | Comments (8)
Category: Medicine, Self-help Schemes, Advertising, 1920's, Alcohol

Improve Your Face


Original ad here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sun Jul 08, 2012 | Comments (3)
Category: Body Modifications, Self-help Schemes, 1910's

Roca Labs Gastric Bypass

Eighty percent of your stomach filled all day with indigestible mystery fiber, for only $480.00? Sign me up! Or just plunk me down in a barn full of hay!
Posted By: Paul | Date: Fri May 06, 2011 | Comments (3)
Category: Food, Medicine, Self-help Schemes

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 | Date: Thu Apr 16, 2009 | Comments (19)
Category: School, Self-help Schemes, Psychology
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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2008 by the author of the post, either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.