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

Death by helicopter

Parachuting onto the whirling blades of a helicopter is both an unusual and a horrific way to die. It's definitely the worst kind of parachute accident I can imagine. It happened to one young woman — her first time parachuting — back in August 1987.

The Guardian - Aug 10, 1987

Paula Goodayle “who was hacked to death when she fell through the whirling blades of a helicopter during her first jump.”

The Sport Parachutist magazine (Oct 1987) offered some details into the subsequent investigation of the incident. The basic conclusion seems to have been that it was a colossal screw-up to have had students continue to parachute when a helicopter was in the area.

Miss Goodayle was despatched on the second pass, being the third parachutist to exit the aircraft, the parachute deployed normally, the descent was normal until just prior to landing when there was a collision between the parachutist and a helicopter approximately 430 yards from the target cross.

The conclusions of the Board of Inquiry were that Drop Zone Control or Air Traffic Control failed to suspend parachuting when the helicopter was in the area and that the helicopter pilot failed to take avoiding action or clear the area when parachiting was in progress. The Board could see no reason why parachuting was not suspended or why the helicopter was in the area whilst parachuting was taking place.

The recommendations of the Board were that whenever a student parachute programme is in operation, the Drop Zone Controller must have radio communication with parachuting aircraft for the purpose of suspending parachuting.

Posted By: Alex - Sat Sep 14, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Death, Flight, 1980s

The MBAs - Born to Run Things

Describing themselves as “the world’s first pro-business rock ’n’ roll band,” the MBAs came out in 1982 with their first (and, I believe, only) album, titled Born to Run Things.

It included songs such as "Inside Information," "Jesus H. Chrysler," "Good Old Boys Raising Keynes", and "Amortize It."

I can’t find any samples of their music online, but if interested you can pick up a vinyl copy of their album on eBay for $19.99.

In the absence of any of the actual music, here are the lyrics to "Bessy," described in the liner notes as “a rock ballad for Bethlehem Steel.”

Let me tell you that if you’re in doubt,
I’ll re-tool quickly, and we can iron things out,
I just want to be specific,
I’ll shun foreign interest
and things’ll be ‘tarrific’.

(CHORUS:) Bessy,
You can’t let your workers go,
You got to put up a fight,
Cause Bessy, I won’t let you throw
Steel away, steel away, steel away,
Into the night.

Productivity is dropping,
And even though I’m with you
it won’t all be Bliss and Laughlin.
You know I’m not here to condemn
The only thing I want from life
is to be your Star of Bethlehem.

Incidentally, their album is also for sale on Amazon, where it's clear that all 5 of the reviews for it have mistaken it for Bruce Springsteen's Born to Run.

More info:

Posted By: Alex - Tue Sep 03, 2019 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Music, 1980s

The Concrete Enema

It provided the title for Chuck’s classic 1996 collection of weird news (and if you don't have Chuck's book you really should do yourself a favor and get it. It deserves to be in every home library). However, we’ve never posted about the incident itself here on WU. So I thought I'd remedy that oversight.

In 1987, two doctors reported an unusual case in The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology. It involved a 20-year-old man who had shown up at an emergency room complaining of rectal pain. Examination of his rectum revealed a “hard stony mass,” and eventually the patient disclosed how the mass had gotten there:

The patient said that approximately 4 h earlier he and his boyfriend had been “fooling around.” After stirring a batch of concrete mix, the patient laid on his back with his feet against the wall at a 45° angle while his boyfriend poured the mixture through a funnel into his rectum. After the concrete mass hardened, it became so painful that he sought medical care.

Remarkably, the doctors were able to remove the concrete mass without any damage to the patient's rectum. It had formed a perfect cast of the interior of the rectum, even showing “grooves produced by mucosal folds.”

Removal revealed another unusual detail: a ping-pong ball mixed in with the concrete. Apparently the patient didn’t explain what the ball was doing there. The doctors hypothesized that it had been "inserted after the enema as a plug to promote retention… Instead, peristaltic contractions forced the air-filled plastic ball deeper into the hardening concrete, accounting for its location in the upper end of the mass."

After resting overnight, the patient was able to leave the hospital the following morning, no worse for wear. One can only hope that he had learned a valuable life lesson: that it's really not a good idea to use concrete as an enema.

I wonder what became of the concrete enema. Was it thrown away in the trash? This seems most likely. Or perhaps it's sitting in a box in a medical archive. Or, and this is my favorite idea, perhaps one of the doctors saved it to use as a paperweight. Whatever the case may be, if it still survives it definitely would be a great exhibit to include in a museum of the weird.

More info: Peter J. Stephens and Mark L. Taff. (1987). “Rectal Impaction Following Enema with Concrete Mix.” The American Journal of Forensic Medicine and Pathology, 8(2): 179-182.

Posted By: Alex - Wed Aug 28, 2019 - Comments (0)
Category: Health, Sex Toys, 1980s

How to catch a shoplifter

Some tips, according to Dick Deal, professional shoplifter:

"Watch people’s hands. We steal with them! Don’t let their hands out of your sight."

Also, "Watch for the dance, the almost ritualistic dance. The strange movements [shoplifters] make."

Posted By: Alex - Tue Aug 27, 2019 - Comments (1)
Category: Crime, 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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