In the UK, sex services leave their advert cards in phone booths, These items are known as tart cards
. A representative sampling has been collected in book form, as you can see in the link below.
But aren't phone booths going extinct everywhere? Who will save the endangered tart card?!?
And of course, the Golden Age of print magazines is long gone or vanishing as well. But you can encounter the weirdest examples of the great Era of Zines in a new volume entitled Bad Mags 2
. It's supposed to release in June, although Amazon is uncertain, so you'll have to check out its predecessor first. And visit the Bad Mags site here.
The Boston Globe reports the death of one Jonathan Bayliss
, an eccentric self-published writer of enormous tomes.
Here's a sample from one of his novels. (Click on text to enlarge.) There's plenty more here
, if you want it!
As children, my sibs and I were utterly fascinated by this weird little book. We studied the drawing for hours. Now you can too, thanks to the magic of the internet!
The cover from this collection of re-imagined ALICE IN WONDERLAND stories certainly seemed to me to be a WU-worthy image.
The Westermarck Effect is a psychological phenomena named after Finnish anthropologist Edvard Westermarck. The effect is that (according to
): "when two people live in close domestic proximity during the first few years in the life of either one, both are desensitized to later close sexual attraction." Which is why most people don't get the hots for their sibling.
However, if siblings don't grow up together and only meet for the first time later in life, they may be intensely sexually attracted to each other. This is known as genetic sexual attraction, or GSA. Again, from Wikipedia
Several factors may contribute to GSA. People commonly rank faces similar to their own as more attractive, trustworthy, etc. than average... Shared interests and personality traits are commonly considered desirable in a mate... In cases of parent-child attraction, the parent may recognize traits of their sometime mate in the child. Such reunions typically produce complex emotions in all involved.
Finally, there is the phenomena known as the Westermarck Trap, which occurs when two people who have grown up together (and thus are sexually desensitized to each other) are expected to marry each other, because of an arranged marriage. According to one theory
, this is what the novel Frankenstein depicts:
Students of the Westermarck effect may be interested to know that this trap is depicted in the novel Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, in which Victor Frankenstein is expected to marry a cousin reared with him. Instead, he creates a monster that persecutes him and murders his prospective bride before the marriage can be consummated. It is suggested that the plot owes something to Mary Shelley's own experience of the Westermarck effect, following a childhood in which she was reared with a stepbrother. Her own personal solution was not to create a monster but to elope with a married man (Percy Bysshe Shelley) at the age of 16.
Here's the cover to a romance novel that reached the market without anyone noticing a certain anomaly. I held a copy of this book at the house of fabled artist pal Nick Jainschigg
recently, so I know it exists.
Read the author's take on the whole affair here
One of the weirdest books you'll ever read is by my pal, Steve Aylett, and it's titled Lint
. (You can order it through the Amazon link below.)
is the "biography" of Jeff Lint, poverty-stricken, mad genius, hack writer, who is basically a cross between Kilgore Trout and Salvador Dali.
One of Lint's fictional creations was a comic-book character dubbed "The Caterer." And now you can read an actual issue of this gonzo masterpiece, thanks to Floating World Comics
. A sample is to the right.
You must investigate this saga of one man and his senseless quest for perfect absurdity in a violent world, or risk being rendered null and void!
The year 2008 marks the twentieth anniversary of a classic tome: HIGH WEIRDNESS BY MAIL
In those antique pre-internet days of the book's debut, your only resources for contacting and receiving strange information was the USPS. There are plenty of cheap copies of HWBM available online, if you want to get a nostalgic snapshot of that era.
But the SubGeniuses behind the book have also launched THE HIGH WEIRDNESS PROJECT
, which strives to replicate the book as a web-based experience.
Pay them a visit, and get your slack on.
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Strange Things
, by Boris Servais, is a book you won't find for sale on Amazon. Servais
had it "Produced in Italy by a specialized printer for small-size books, it collects odd discoveries and inventions around nostalgic aviation, astronautics, time trips or science fiction warfare." Below is an example of one of the entries. (via Book By Its Cover
I can heartily recommend this book to any reader interested in oddball comics or strange corners of pop culture in general. The authors are acknowledged comics experts, and they've dug up some very bizarre comics, here shown as cover images only, no interior pages from the offenders. Your life will never be the same, after you've been introduced to, say, All-Negro Comics
or Hansi, the Girl Who Loved the Swatstika
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.