Category:
1980s

The man whose blindness, deafness, and baldness was cured by lightning

We've reported a few cases on WU of people who have experienced accidental (and improbable) cures, such as the woman whose deafness was cured by a sneeze. One of the most famous examples of this phenomenon is the case of Edwin Robinson, who claimed that being struck by lightning cured him of his blindness and near-total deafness.

The lightning strike occurred on June 4, 1980 when he ventured outside of his home in Falmouth, Maine to rescue his pet chicken from the rain. After lying unconscious for 20 minutes, the 62-year-old Robinson awoke to find himself cured of the ailments that had plagued him since a road accident nine years earlier. An ophthalmologist who examined him, Dr. Albert Moulton of Portland, said: "There is no question but that his vision is back. He can't move his eyes, but his central vision is back... I can't explain it. I don't know who can. I know some of my peers in Washington, maybe, will say it's hysterical blindness. I can't see it. It couldn't have lasted this long. From the physical findings originally, he was definitely blind."

Edwin Robinson reads about his miraculous recovery



Later, Robinson even claimed that new hair had begun to grow on his bald head. He remarked to the NY Times, "I'm all recharged now, literally... It's coming in thick. My wife is all excited about it. I was bald for 35 years. They told me it was hereditary."

Los Angeles Times - July 5, 1980



Later, Timex took advantage of Robinson's fame to feature him in a 1990 ad. Although the messaging seems a bit confused. Once broken, but now miraculously fixed?

Also, it's hard to tell, but he doesn't seem to have a full head of hair. He must have lost it again.

Source: AdsPast.com



St. Louis Post Dispatch - June 7, 1980

Posted By: Alex - Tue Mar 24, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Health, 1980s, Eyes and Vision

The use of blood to make concrete



In 1980, Charles Laleman of France received a US patent (No. 4,203,674) for a technique for making concrete by mixing together cement with blood. His patent described a variety of different recipes one could use to create this blood concrete. For instance:

EXAMPLE 1
A light colloidal concrete is prepared by using:
a commercially available cement (cement CPA 400), a silico-calcareous sand graded no higher than 0.8 mm (the cement/sand mass ratio being equal to 1), whole blood powder of animal origin, a colloid, and mixing water in variable proportions.
The various constituents are mixed by means of a mixer working between 100 and 600 r.p.m.



The advantage of using blood, Laleman argued, was that the oxygen in it produced a lighter concrete.

Curiously, Laleman acknowledged that the idea of using blood to make concrete wasn't in any way new. He cited a variety of earlier patents, such as US patent 1,020,325 from 1912 which described mixing blood into concrete. And, in fact, the technique of using blood to make concrete was even practiced by the ancient Romans.

What made Laleman's technique unique (and therefore patentable) was apparently that he used it specifically to lighten the concrete, rather than to color it or to make it more porous. That seems like a rather fine distinction to me, but it was enough to earn him a patent.

Laleman's list of earlier patents includes another oddity. He refers to US Patent No. 3,536,507 (from 1970) which describes making concrete by combining cement with "an admixture which is derived from the fermentation liquor resulting from the aerobic fermentation of liquid carbohydrates, e.g., molasses from beet or cane sugar, corn, wheat or wood pulp." That sounds like a fancy way of saying they were mixing cement with beer.

Posted By: Alex - Sun Mar 15, 2020 - Comments (4)
Category: Engineering and Construction, Inventions, 1980s, Blood

Just Can’t Put My Finger On It

Who knew this was a technique? See a more recent incident after the first story.

DOCTOR MAKES A DRAMATIC RESCUE
Karen Dillon
CHICAGO TRIBUNE
Dr. Wendy Marshall was jolted awake at 5 a.m. by an urgent phone message: Doctors at a Joliet hospital were using nothing but their fingers to plug two bullet holes in a man`s heart in a last-ditch effort to save his life.

The doctors at Silver Cross Hospital ''said they had their fingers in the holes and couldn`t stop the bleeding,'' Marshall recounted Thursday.

In an age when sophisticated medical equipment can keep patients alive for months, this most basic technique ultimately saved the life of Tommy Lee

''Tony'' Hairston, of Joliet.

Before the night was over, Marshall, a cardiac surgeon and director of the Loyola University Medical Center`s Trauma Center and the Air Medical Service, would be flown to Joliet and use her own fingers to dike the holes. At the same time, Marshall squeezed the 29-year-old man`s heart to force it to pump when it stopped three times for a total of eight minutes.

Eventually, Hairston was taken by helicopter to Loyola where open heart surgery was performed. Thursday night he was listed in critical condition, but was expected to recover.

The drama began Wednesday night when Hairston, a landscaper shot after an argument with a neighbor over missing property, was taken to Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet.

Silver Cross physicians immediately operated on Hairston, but did not open up the victim`s heart. ''The surgeon found blood in the chest and a couple holes around the heart. At that time, he didn`t open up the heart,''

said Dr. Robert Freeark, chief of surgery at Loyola.

But then after surgery, Hairston started bleeding again. ''This time the surgeon opened Hairston up and and found two holes in his heart . . . and he couldn`t stop the bleeding,'' Freeark said.

The physicians did the only thing they could-stick their fingers into the holes in Hairston`s heart.

Marshall arose, dressed and was taken by helicopter to Silver Cross, accompanied by a paramedic, Kent Adams, and Laurie Dudek, a flight nurse. They arrived 23 minutes after the call.

At Silver Cross, Marshall found a hole in the front of the heart and one in the back. The location of the one in the back was in an area where it couldn`t be repaired without stopping the heart, she said, and Silver Cross didn`t have the equipment for such specialized treatment.

So it meant transporting Hairston to Loyola Medical Center-with Marshall`s fingers in the holes.

Before the night was over, Marshall, as her fingers plugged the holes, squeezed Hairston`s heart to force it to pump when it stopped three times for a total of eight minutes.

Marshall said she used the first two fingers of her right hand to plug the back hole and her right thumb to stop up the front hole. ''When the heart stopped, I kept my fingers in the holes and squeezed my left hand against the right.''

During the flight, Adams, the paramedic, forced Hairston to breathe by squeezing a bag attached to a tube that was shoved down his trachea.

Four intravenous tubes were attached to Hairston, feeding medicine to stimulate his heart beat-one into a large vein near his left collar bone, two to his left arm and one in his right arm.

When the team finally arrived at Loyola, cardiac surgeon Henry Sullivan had been alerted. The patient was placed on a machine that circulated his blood while the heartbeat was halted and the organ repaired, Freeark said.

Adams shook his head in wonder Thursday afternoon. ''It was dramatic,''

he said.

Adams said Marshall was steady as a rock during the flight. ''She was so calm. She just let us know what was happening, and then we did our part.''

Hairston allegedly was shot by Robert Knox, of Joliet, after an argument over some items reported missing from Hairston`s apartment, Joliet police said. Knox was charged with attempted murder, armed violence and unlawful use of a weapon, police said.

By Thursday afternoon, Hairston had awakened a few times, which is considered a positive sign, Marshall said.

Hairston ''is lucky to be alive today,'' she said. ''When the heart stops, most people are basically brain dead within three to four minutes.''

Freeark and another Loyola heart physician, Dr. Bruce Lewis, said that saving Hairston`s life by plugging the holes in his heart was amazing.

''To my knowlege it was totally unprecedented,'' Freeark said. ''Nobody has ever been transferred with a finger better.''

''Very, very amazing, and very rare to see someone survive after that . . . especially with the size of the hole (in the back of the heart),'' Lewis said.

Marshall took the praise in stride. ''Anyone who has got a blood pressure can be saved. So you go for it.''


Source.

Heroic military veterans and police officers put their training to use during the deadly mass shooting at a Las Vegas music concert — even “plugging bullet holes with their fingers,” according to a report.

“You saw a lot of ex-military just jump into gear,” witness Russell Bleck told the “Today” show on NBC. “I saw guys plugging bullet holes with their fingers.”

“While everyone else was crouching, police officers (were) standing up at targets, just trying to direct people, tell them where to go,” he added. “The amount of bravery I saw there, words can’t describe what it was like.”

The practice of plugging gunshot wounds helps to kick in the body’s defense mechanisms that prevent rapid blood loss, according to a Wired report.

Severe wounds, especially on the carotid arteries of the neck, must be quickly plugged with the fingers or packed to temporarily stop the hemorrhaging, according to Gould and Pyle’s Pocket Cyclopedia of Medicine and Surgery.


Source.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Mar 09, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Body, Blood, Death, Guns, Medicine, Superheroes, 1980s, Twenty-first Century

Exerlopers

The inventor of exerlopers, Gregory Lekhtman, believed that "we are not designed to run." Apparently he thought it would be better to leap around like antelopes instead.



Indiana Gazette - May 3, 1988

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jan 04, 2020 - Comments (6)
Category: Exercise and Fitness, 1980s

Radiorama, “Vampires”

Their Wikipedia page. Don't abandon this until the actual "singing" starts.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Dec 23, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Bombast, Bloviation and Pretentiousness, Ineptness, Crudity, Talentlessness, Kitsch, and Bad Art, Music, 1980s, Fictional Monsters

The Magic Egg



State-of-the-art CGI--in 1984, that is!

Posted By: Paul - Tue Dec 03, 2019 - Comments (4)
Category: Movies, Special Effects, 1980s

Possibly in Michigan

A recent article in the NY Times describes how artist Cecelia Condit’s weirdo 1983 short video “Possibly in Michigan” is finding a new audience via social media site Tik Tok.

At the time of writing, the #PossiblyInMichigan hashtag on TikTok had over 12 million views. The video’s YouTube upload had over 750,000 views, while another recently deleted excerpt had around 875,000. “This is a wild time in my life — you couldn’t predict it,” Condit said. “It’s funny, I don’t have a gallery, I don’t have those things, but the internet has been,”— and here she interrupted herself — “I get so many hits,” she concluded.

Condit describes her video as “A musical horror story about two young women who are stalked through a shopping mall by a the cannibal named Arthur.”

Posted By: Alex - Sun Nov 10, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Movies, Outsider Art, 1980s

Space Shuttle Adventure



Be sure to listen to the Space Shuttle Theme Song starting around the 5:00 mark on Side A. "Now we need bigger ships to take us to the stars!"


Listen here.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Oct 09, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Spaceflight, Astronautics, and Astronomy, 1980s

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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, science-themed books such as Elephants on Acid and Psychedelic Apes.

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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