Category:
1990s

Follies of the Madmen #368



Cigarettes tied to alarming increase in skirt flareups!

Original ad here.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jun 09, 2018 - Comments (1)
Category: Business, Advertising, Tobacco and Smoking, 1990s

Mistress of Time

Back in 1996, Jeanne Calment of France celebrated her 121st birthday by releasing a record titled Maîtresse du Temps (Mistress of Time) on which she "recounts her memories above a musical background of rap, techno and farandole, a regional dance tune dating to the Middle Ages."

Based on the clips I've been able to find, the album was as awful as you might expect.

Calment died in 1997, at the age of 122. Wkipedia offers this interesting detail about her life:

In 1965, at age 90 and with no heirs, Calment signed a contract to sell her apartment to lawyer André-François Raffray, retaining a life estate. Raffray, then aged 47 years, agreed to pay her a monthly sum of 2,500 francs (€381.12) until she died. Raffray ended up paying Calment the equivalent of more than €140,000, more than double the apartment's value.




Salem Statesman Journal - Feb 22, 1996





Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 26, 2018 - Comments (0)
Category: Music, 1990s

Feral Cheryl

An eco-feminist, anti-Barbie doll featuring tattoos, unshaven legs, pierced nipples, pubic hair, and dreadlocks. Created by Lee Duncan of Australia in 1995.

Duncan still has a few Feral Cheryls available for sale at her website feralcheryl.com.au. They're going for $75 AUD (about 57 US dollars).



Palm Beach Post - May 31, 1995

Posted By: Alex - Mon Apr 23, 2018 - Comments (3)
Category: Toys, Gender, 1990s

Dog-Fur Boots

Tecnica is still around, and still selling boots. But none lined with dog fur any more, as far as I can tell.



Greenville News - Dec 11, 1991

Posted By: Alex - Sun Apr 22, 2018 - Comments (5)
Category: Fashion, Shoes, Dogs, 1990s

Have an airport nice day

In 1991, the New York Port Authority launched a $90,000 program to teach its employees to be friendlier to tourists. As part of this program employees "were encouraged to repeat the following mantra as a send-off to visitors: 'Thank you. Have an airport nice day.'"

Minneapolis Star Tribune - Aug 12, 1991

Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 19, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Bombast, Bloviation and Pretentiousness, 1990s

Inflatable Underpants

I wonder where Katsuo Katugoru was during the big 2011 tsunami... if he got a chance to use his invention.

Orlando Sentinel - Aug 23, 1998



Update: I've concluded that Katsuo's inflatable underpants were fake news. Never happened. Columnist Mark Gibbs called it out as such in his May 4, 1998 column in Network World magazine. He also offered some prescient thoughts about the emergence and possible consequences of the fake-news phenomenon:

Tokyo commuter Katsuo Katugoru caused havoc on a crowded tube train when his inflatable underpants unexpectedly went off. The rubber underwear was made by Katsuo himself and was designed to inflate to 30 times their original size in the event of a tidal wave. "I am terrified of water, and death by drowning is my greatest fear," said Katsuo, 48.
— Unsubstantiated story carried March 3, 1998, by London's Daily Telegraph, National Public Radio and many other serious news organizations.

What's interesting about this story (other than the weirdness) is the coverage the story received. According to some reports, The Associated Press sourced it, but no one has been able to find any AP reference. You have to wonder how the likes of NPR and the Daily Telegraph could run with it.

What the event illustrates is a phenomenon that will become increasingly common — the Internet raising gossip, jokes and misinformation to the status of truth. This is what I call "anti-data." Anti-data is not the opposite of data, rather it is the stuff that dilutes and invalidates the data you need.

Part of the reason anti-data exists is because the Internet supports the rapid transfer of huge amounts of what we'll call, for the sake of argument, "news." Way back in 1967, Marshall McLuhan noted the consequence of speedy news delivery as a general trend of modern media in "The Medium is the Message: An Inventory of Effects," (p. 63):

Information pours upon us, instantaneously and continuously. As soon as information is acquired, it is very rapidly replaced by still newer information. Our electrically configured world has forced us to move from the habit of data classification to the mode of pattern recognition.

The Internet amplifies this effect and applies it not only to news but also to intelligence about markets, people and business concerns in general.

To corporations, this should be a great concern. As your employees begin to rely on pattern recognition over data analysis, generally their judgment will become less consistent.

Their correct conclusions may well become more accurate, but their wrong ones will tend toward the catastrophic. These extremes might average the same as prior judgments, but the fact that the highs are stellar and the lows, abysmal, will induce chaotic behavior.

Posted By: Alex - Tue Apr 17, 2018 - Comments (5)
Category: Inventions, Underwear, 1990s

Do-It-Yourself Coffin/Bookcase

"For $9.95 he'll mail you plans for a do-it-yourself coffin that also works as a bookcase."

I guess when you die your family wouldn't even need to remove the books. Just throw you in there with them.

Oshkosh Northwestern - Mar 23, 1993



Lincoln Star - Mar 23, 1993

Posted By: Alex - Mon Apr 16, 2018 - Comments (4)
Category: Death, Books, 1990s

Carrying the cross against feminism

Given the point she was trying to make, seems like it would have been more appropriate to drag her husband as he reclined in a rickshaw, or something along those lines.

Baltimore Sun - July 21, 1997



The Guardian - July 22, 1997

Posted By: Alex - Fri Apr 13, 2018 - Comments (6)
Category: Religion, Gender, Women, 1990s

Serb, the men’s cologne

In the midst of the Bosnian War, two Serbian designers came out with "Serb" the cologne. I can't think of any other cologne inspired by a war.

Arizona Republic - Apr 17, 1994





St. Louis Post-Dispatch - May 9, 1994

Posted By: Alex - Wed Mar 28, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: 1990s, Perfume and Cologne and Other Scents

Automatic Pancake Machine

Invented by J. Clarence Sebring of Dundee, New York, circa 1990. It could make one pancake every seven seconds.



Elmira Star-Gazette - Jun 5, 2006

Posted By: Alex - Tue Mar 20, 2018 - Comments (2)
Category: Food, Inventions, 1990s

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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.

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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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