Category:
1960s

When Yogi Rao walked on water

Lakshmanasandra Srikanta Rao was an Indian yogi who claimed to have such total control over his body that he could eat glass, swallow poison, eat live vipers, walk on fire, and even survive an atomic bomb. But basically he was just a stage magician who knew a few tricks and put on a good act.

He made headlines in the 1950s when he moved to America and gained heiress Doris Duke as a follower, but he returned to India after only a few months, apparently recognizing that he had gotten in over his head and promised his followers more than he could deliver.

He laid low until 1966 when he returned to headlines with his claim that he was going to publicly walk on water. Over 600 paid to see him do this, including some of the most famous people in India. But Rao took one step and plunged right to the bottom of the pool he was supposed to walk across.

What had he been thinking? Had he somehow convinced himself that he really could walk on water? Maybe. He was later quoted as expressing regret at his failure, saying, “I am so angry that I feel like drowning myself even if I have to tie a stone round my neck to do so.”

Two years later he offered to try again, to prove he was for real, but the performance never happened.

You can read more about Rao's colorful career in this interesting article by Philip Deslippe.



Tampa Tribune - June 13, 1966



La Crosse Tribune - Mar 14, 1965

Posted By: Alex - Thu Dec 06, 2018 - Comments (4)
Category: Frauds, Cons and Scams, 1960s

Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush



Nothing like a "church rave."





Wikipedia entry here.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Dec 02, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Movies, Religion, Bohemians, Beatniks, Hippies and Slackers, Psychedelic, 1960s

Yoko “Sings”



Let us know when you bail.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Nov 30, 2018 - Comments (6)
Category: Annoying Things, Cacophony, Dissonance, White Noise and Other Sonic Assaults, Music, 1960s

Parental Pressure

David Phillips was so eager to become a grandfather that in 1969 he built a 9-foot statue of a pregnant woman outside his house as a subtle hint to his son, Bill, and daughter-in-law that they should hurry up and start producing children.

I found a picture of the statue under wraps, but unfortunately not one of it uncovered. Nor could I find out if Bill Phillips and his wife ever did succumb to the parental pressure and hade children. But I did find out that he was a minor celebrity as a trumpet player. You can read his bio on the Canadian Encyclopedia. He was a founding member of the band Canadian Brass. The bio also reports a rumor that he played the trumpet solo on Penny Lane, which he didn't, but apparently he was famous enough as a trumpet player that the idea seemed plausible to some people.

Great Falls Tribune - June 4, 1969



Calgary Herald - June 6, 1969



The trumpeter who actually played the solo on Penny Lane was David Mason. See video below.

Posted By: Alex - Tue Nov 27, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Music, Parents, 1960s

1966 Revisited

Not only do you get the intro and outro to a stinker of a sitcom, but also a litany of worries--headaches, upset stomachs, flyaway hair--that seem positively benign in 2018.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Nov 26, 2018 - Comments (0)
Category: Business, Advertising, Products, Ineptness, Crudity, Talentlessness, Kitsch, and Bad Art, 1960s

Follies of the Madmen #397



I detect the influence of A Charlie Brown Christmas on this unlikely morality play.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Nov 24, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Advertising, Hygiene, Excrement, Dogs, 1960s

Circumcision training school

The Brith Milah School, established at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital in 1968, was the world’s first-ever (and only?) school for circumcision training. It was a two-year program followed by a one-year internship. (Seems like a lot of training for a relatively simple operation. Though I guess it's important not to mess it up.)

The first class graduated in 1970, but by the 1980s the school evidently no longer existed. According to a 1989 story on JTA (Jewish Telegraphic Agency) it “ran into problems when it could not get malpractice insurance for trainees who were not physicians.”

Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle - Mar 22, 1968



Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle - Dec 25, 1970

Posted By: Alex - Wed Nov 21, 2018 - Comments (5)
Category: Body Modifications, Surgery, 1960s

Plain Raisin Sandwich



Yum or yuck?

Source.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Nov 21, 2018 - Comments (7)
Category: Food, 1960s, Nausea, Revulsion and Disgust

The television set that shattered things

Back in 1960, Brian Eppley of Gaffney, South Carolina became convinced that "frequency waves emitting from his television receiver" were causing objects around his house to shatter.

The broken objects included: a vase, serving tray, ash tray, sea shell, and a glass of milk held by his wife.

Eppley also complained that watching the TV would cause him to get a headache because of the "pressure, beyond the area of hearing, from these waves."

Could the Eppley's TV set be an example of resistentialism? (See Paul give a talk about resistentialism in this post from 2013).

The Greenville News - May 15, 1960

Posted By: Alex - Tue Nov 13, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Technology, 1960s

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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.

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