Weird Universe

Parades and Festivals

Carnival in Trinidad:  Then and Now

I don't mean to sound like an Old Fart, but the 1957 Carnival just seems to me so much more charming and weird and ingenious--look at those bipedal seahorses with the mermaid--than the current version, which seems to be about nothing more than bare flesh. Maybe the 2015 videographer simply did not film the weird costumes--but then again, every other video of the 2015 carnival on YouTube features the exact same stuff. Now, I like bare flesh as much as the next voyeur, but I would really prefer to see a papier-mache Godzilla any day.

Earmuff Parade

The people of Farmington, Maine recently held an earmuff parade. They've been doing this annually for the past 39 years to honor their most famous one-time resident, Chester Greenwood, inventor of the earmuff. He came up with the idea at the age of 15, while ice skating.

Posted By: Alex | Date: Wed Dec 16, 2015 | Comments (3)
Category: Parades and Festivals

Spaceship from 1954 Halloween Parade



Click either image to enlarge.

Original article here.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Thu May 14, 2015 | Comments (8)
Category: Art, Motor Vehicles, Parades and Festivals, Spaceflight, Astronautics, and Astronomy, 1950's

Boryeong Mud Festival

Can you get to Korea today for this week-long "adventurous silt extreme training experience"?
Posted By: Paul | Date: Fri Jul 19, 2013 | Comments (5)
Category: Hygiene, Parades and Festivals, Asia

Sheboygan Brat Days

August is practically here! Don't forget to head to beautiful Sheboygan for their annual Brat Days celebration. The first video tells the schedule for two years ago, but I can't imagine it will be too different in 2013, although on the other hand, it's their big 60th anniversary!

Plus, as you can see in the second video, they even feature sexy pole dancing!

Posted By: Paul | Date: Tue Mar 19, 2013 | Comments (6)
Category: Food, Parades and Festivals, Regionalism, Public Indecency, Dance

Hadaka Matsuri:  Annual Japanese “Naked Festival”

Read the full story here.

No full monty, just semi-bare male butts.
Posted By: Paul | Date: Thu Feb 21, 2013 | Comments (5)
Category: Parades and Festivals, Asia, Nudism

The Wellingborough Carnival


image image

The town of Wellingborough, UK, has been holding a carnival for over 100 years. The old affairs certainly featured things that look weird to us today. Here's a photo album to peruse.

And the Wellingborough Carnival home page reveals this year's affair is on July 7th! Plenty of time to make your plans to attend!

American Legion Parades of Yore

Today, the average upstanding citizen is a pale shadow of his or her riotous ancestors. We don't drink as much or smoke as much or act goofy in public as much (despite the roll call of weird behaviors as collected by our Fearless Leader, Chuck.)

Look at this boring clip of a contemporary American Legion parade from last year.

Then view this account from 1947, when randy old codger Legionnaires rode bucking ATVs through the streets, poured water from hotel windows, and shocked innocent women with cattle prods (probably the very ones sold through Johnson Smith catalogs, as shown earlier on WU).

Now, answer truly: which era would you rather live in?


Bowdoinham’s 100-year Savings Fund: Part 2

I posted two weeks ago about Bowdoinham, the town that put money away back in 1912 to fund its 250th Anniversary party this year. I sent an email to the Bowdoinham Historical Committee trying to get more details and recently received this response:

the outcome of that story was that, yes, funding remained intact and has grown substantially after all these years.
There was $500.00 originally raised in 1912- mostly small donations of .25 here and there (it was a lot then!). It all added up. Remarkably, it stayed intact and is now being used to sponsor the many activities that Bowdoinham is planning in celebration during the coming year. You can read about it here:
 There will be some funds reserved and kept to seed future celebrations. We are very fortunate that members of our town had the foresight to do this for us!

So their 100-year plan was actually a success! They didn't reveal (at least, not to me) how much money their plan created, but a 1912 article in The Youth's Companion calculated that if they raised $400, they should have around $20,000 in 2012, assuming an interest rate of 4 percent. Since they raised $500, they should have a bit more than that. Enough to have a nice party, but not enough to make them all millionaires.

The Youth's Companion article also revealed that a box was buried in 1912 containing various curiosities, and it should be opened sometime this year:

In a sealed box, to be opened at the time of the celebration in 2012, were placed, among other things, letters from scores of those who contributed to the fund. Many of the letters were from Bowdoinham people, or the descendants of Bowdoinham people in other states or in foreign lands. In some cases the writers described the probable Bowdoinham of 2012 or the imagined conditions of life at that time. No doubt the letters will create much amusement when they are read a century from now.
Posted By: Alex | Date: Fri Jan 13, 2012 | Comments (2)
Category: Money, Parades and Festivals

The Town That’s Been Waiting 100 Years for 2012

Here's a story that ran in the Oakland Tribune (and quite a few other papers) back in March 1912:


So 100 years has now elapsed. What happened to the money? Is it still there? Did it grow into millions of dollars? I'm curious to know.

Bowdoinham still has a 250th Anniversary Committee, so I guess I'll send them an email. I'll report back when I have more details.

More >>
Posted By: Alex | Date: Sun Jan 01, 2012 | Comments (3)
Category: Money, Parades and Festivals
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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.