Weird Universe Archive

August 2015

August 17, 2015

Party Record:  The Urinal



Posted By: Paul - Mon Aug 17, 2015 - Comments (4)
Category: Bathrooms, Humor, Body Fluids, 1940s, Genitals

August 16, 2015

News of the Weird (August 16, 2015)

News of the Weird
Weirdnuz.M436, August 16, 2015
Copyright 2015 by Chuck Shepherd. All rights reserved.

Lead Story

“The worshipful treatment of pets may be the thing that unites all Americans,” wrote an Atlantic Magazine blogger in July, describing the under-construction luxury terminal for animals at New York’s JFK airport. The “ARK” will offer shower stalls for traveling horses, “conjugal stations” (for ever-horny penguins), and housing for nearly 200 cows (that might produce 5,000 pounds of manure)--and passengers traveling with dogs or cats can book the “Paradise 4 Paws” pet-pampering resort. The ARK is a for-profit venture; said one industry source (quoted in a July Crain’s New York Business report), “You hear stories about the crazy money that rich people spend on their [animals] . . . they’re mostly true.” [Crain’s New York Business, 7-13-2015] [CityLab.com, 7-20-2015]

Government in Action

Officially, now, it is “unreasonable” for a federal agency (the Bureau of Land Management, in this instance) to fail to say yes or no, for 29 years, to a drilling-permit application. (Before July’s federal court decision, BLM had been arguing that 29 years was not too long.) A company had requested to drill just one exploratory well in Montana, for natural gas, in 1985, but the Bureau had delayed the proceeding six times since then. The judge ordered the Bureau to set a deadline for deciding. [Washington Post, 7-29-2015]

Georgia, one of six states that make taxpayers shell out huge fees to access its databases of public records, tries so relentlessly to control its archive that, recently, in a federal lawsuit, it said opposition to its policy was basically “terrorism.” Activists (PublicResource.org) have been establishing workarounds to free up some databases for citizen use, and Georgia demands that they stop. Georgia even claims “copyright” protection for one category of important legal documents that were initially drafted by state bureaucrats, audaciously calling them “original” and “creative” works. [Los Angeles Times, 7-27-2015]

Mandatory Inaction: In July, the mayor of the town of Ador, Spain (pop. 1,400), officially enacted into law what had merely been custom--a required afternoon siesta from 2 to 5 p.m. Businesses were ordered to close, and children were to remain indoors (and quiet). [The Local (Madrid), 7-16-2015]

Police Report

At a traffic stop in Rockingham, Vt., on July 26th, both driver and passenger were charged with DUI. Erik Polite, 35, was the driver (clocked at 106 mph on Interstate 91, and according to police, with drugs in the car), and while he was being screened for intoxication, passenger Leeshawn Baker, 34, jumped behind the wheel and peeled off in reverse across the highway, nearly hitting the Trooper, who arrested him. [WCAX-TV (Burlington), 7-29-2015]

Nathaniel Harrison, 38, was arrested in July in a Phoenix suburb on several charges, including possession of a deadly weapon during a felony, but he escaped an even more serious charge when a second “deadly weapon” failed to engage. Harrison reportedly intended to retaliate against a “snitch” and arrived at the man’s home carrying a rattlesnake, which he supposedly pointed at the man, hoping it would bite him. However, the snake balked, and Harrison’s attempted payback failed. [KPHO-TV (Phoenix), 7-28-2015]

Lame Defenses in Lake County, Florida: (1) Daniel Baker, 40, and Robert Richardson, 19, were arrested in Altoona, Fla., in August after getting caught loading appliances from a vacant house. According to the arrest report, both men appeared incredulous to learn that items in a vacant house aren’t just “free.” (2) Six days earlier about 20 miles away in Tavares, Fla., Corey Ramsey, 23, was arrested for burglary when a police officer caught him sitting on a toilet of a vacant, for-sale house attending to a need. Ramsey’s extensive petty-crime rap sheet belied his explanation for being there--that he was contemplating buying the $299,000 house and wanted to try it out first. [Daily Commercial (Leesburg), 8-4-2015] [Daily Commercial, 7-30-2015]

Still-More “Intelligent Design”?

Zoologists at the University of Basel in Switzerland, publishing recently in a prestigious British journal, reported the likelihood that a certain flatworm species has overcome the frustration of not finding a mating partner in its lifetime. The scientists believe the flatworm exploits its hermaphroditic qualities and injects its sperm into its own head, from which it sometimes migrates to its reproductive facilities. (Flatworm researchers are aided on their projects by the species’ transparent bodies, facilitating the tracking of the sperm.) [World-Science.net, 6-2-2015]

Protest!

About 200 protesters gathered in front of Hong Kong police headquarters on August 2nd to denounce the 3-1/2-month jail sentence given to Ms. Ng Lai-ying, 30, who was convicted of assault for shoving a police officer with her chest. Women (and some men) wearing bras as outerwear chanted, “A breast is not a weapon.” (Ng was originally protesting the hardly-sexy issue of import-export abuses between Hong Kong and mainland China cities.) [South China Morning Post, 8-2-2015]

The Joy of Protest: An August 1st demonstration outside Britain’s Parliament protesting legislation to curb until-now-legal psychoactive drugs drew about 100 people--consuming their drug of choice, nitrous oxide. As organizers distributed gas-filled balloons for demonstrators to take hits from, “the group erupted in fits of laughter,” according to The Guardian. [The Guardian, 8-1-2015]

Perspective

Construction on a $1.7 million therapeutic equestrian facility in St. Cloud, Fla., expressly for use by wounded U.S. service members, was delayed in August when a bald eagle nest was discovered on the grounds. Federal law requires at least 330 feet of clearance for the nest, plus additional monitoring to assure the birds’ tranquility. Said one neighbor, “The very animal that symbolizes freedom is delaying therapy for those who fought for it.” [Bright House Cable (Orlando), 8-5-2013]

Funny Old World

The Welsh language is such a severe mutation of the original English spoken in the Middle Ages that, to the inexperienced eye, it is barely distinguishable from, say, Klingon. In fact, in July, the Welsh government, responding to queries about a possible UFO sighting near Cardiff airport, playfully issued its galaxy-friendly response in Klingon (“jang vlDa je due luq,” meaning that further information will be provided. (In Welsh, for example, “I cannot understand Welsh” is “nad oes modd i ddeall Cymraeg.”) (Recently, in Swansea, Wales, alleged drug dealer Dwaine Campbell, 25, adamantly refused to leave his cell for a court hearing because he feared being judged in Welsh--until authorities promised to transfer the case to Campbell’s native England.) [BBC News, 7-10-2015] [Wales Online, 7-27-2015]

Update

Despite repeated assurances by Olympic officials, it appears more certain than ever that 2016 boating and surfing events in Brazil’s Guanabara Bay and Rodrigo de Freitas Lake will be conducted in water so polluted with human sewage that every athlete will almost certainly be struck with fever, vomiting, and diarrhea. An August Associated Press report revealed the waters’ virus levels (of fecal coliform and other viruses) as high as two million times the level that would close down a California beach. (Olympic and local officials continue to insist that the water will be safe by next summer, but, as the AP pointed out, their protocols test only for bacteria and not viruses. One U.S. water-quality expert advised all athletes to move to Rio ahead of the games--to try to build up an immunity.) [Associated Press via The Guardian (London), 8-1-2015]

News of the Weird Classic (May 2010)

In mid-April [2010], senior Iranian cleric Ayatollah Kazem Sedighi warned that recent earthquakes in Haiti, Chile, and elsewhere were caused by women's loose sex and immodest dress. Immediately, Australian Jennifer McCreight responded on Facebook by urging women worldwide to dress provocatively on April 26th [2010], to create "boobquake" and test the cleric's theory, and at least 90,000 women promised they would reveal serious cleavage on that date. On April 26th, following a several-day absence of earthquakes, a Richter-scale-measuring 6.5 quake hit just south of Taiwan. (Slight advantage to the Ayatollah, since a Purdue University seismologist observed that a 6.5 quake was not uncommon for that region). [Courier-Mail (Brisbane)-AFP, 4-17-2010; Indianapolis Star, 4-28-2010]

Thanks This Week to Bruce Leiserowitz, Kathryn Wood, and Crystal Hipkins, and to the News of the Weird Board of Editorial Advisors.

Posted By: Chuck - Sun Aug 16, 2015 - Comments (3)
Category:

The Dare Killer, 1933

Oscar Hickey, Hazel Short, Vernon Tucker, and Maxine Scott had all been at a dance, after which they drove home together. This involved a lot of drinking and some gun play in which they were "amusing themselves by playing with a revolver, firing occasional shots as they sped along the concrete slab."

While stopping at a gas station, Tucker and Scott got out to get some cigarettes. There was a gun shot. Tucker and Scott rushed back to the car and found Hickey dead. Hazel Short was still holding the gun with which she had just shot him. Her strange explanation: "He dared me to shoot him, and I did."

Short became known as the "Dare Killer." She pleaded guilty and was sentenced to serve one to 14 years in prison. She was released on parole after three-and-a-half years. I haven't been able to find any info on what happened to her subsequently.

I guess the lesson of the case is that it's not a good idea to dare someone to shoot you, especially if they've been drinking.

Decatur Daily Review - Sep 19, 1933

Decatur Daily Review - Sep 16, 1933

Posted By: Alex - Sun Aug 16, 2015 - Comments (3)
Category: 1930s

August 15, 2015

I Hate Mayonnaise Club

Honolulu columnist Charles Memminger founded the Worldwide I Hate Mayonnaise Club in 1988. Its purpose was to spread the gospel of mayonnaise hatred. It did so by circulating quotations such as, "Mayonnaise, like hollandaise, was invented by the French to cover up the flavour of spoiled flesh, stale vegetables, rotten fish."

Member's would receive an official certificate that they could frame and put on their wall.

I'm not sure if the club is active any more. Its website (nomayo.com) is dead, though you can check out an archived copy of it at archive.org.

Perhaps all the members saw the light and realized that mayonnaise is the greatest food ever.

Posted By: Alex - Sat Aug 15, 2015 - Comments (8)
Category: Food, Mayonnaise

Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?



What a fine joke! The gear-driven, proto-cybernetic hell world of 1958 now looks more like a paradise compared with our world of 2015. No digitization. Hardly any cars on the highway. Children interacting unsupervised with a living ice-cream man. A TV set that can be repaired with a home visit, rather than going straight to the landfill. Coffee perked at home instead of provided by Starbucks. Human interaction unmediated by screens....

Take me back there now!

Posted By: Paul - Sat Aug 15, 2015 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Domestic, Marriage, Family, 1950s

August 14, 2015

Go Answer the Phone

Very creepy. If you were woken by a stranger telling you to answer the phone, would you do it?

I'm a pretty deep sleeper. It usually takes me a few minutes after waking to achieve full consciousness. So I suspect this trick would work on me.

Ironwood Daily Globe - Nov 7, 1958



Go Answer the Phone, Said Bedroom Stranger
SEATTLE (AP)—Darwin Barker was awakened by a man at the foot of his bed who told him to "go answer the phone."
Groggy with sleep, Barker staggered into another room to the telephone. The ringing awoke him completely.
He rushed back into his bedroom but by that time the man was gone. So were Barker's trousers, wallet and $1.25.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Aug 14, 2015 - Comments (3)
Category: Sleep and Dreams, Scary Criminals, 1950s

Cheerios Kid and Cheerios Sue













From the days when a commercial could hold an entire narrative arc in thirty or sixty seconds. Apparently the Kid and Sue were thrill-seekers who could not resist dangerous environments.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Aug 14, 2015 - Comments (2)
Category: Anthropomorphism, Daredevils, Stuntpeople and Thrillseekers, Food, Advertising, 1960s

August 13, 2015

Staging a Left-olution

Today's post features a bunch of sinister, leftist radicals, in honor of International Left Handers Day (August 13).



Also, check out the Bill of Lefts.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Aug 13, 2015 - Comments (6)
Category: Riots, Protests and Civil Disobedience, Video, Poetry

The Woman with the Serpent’s Tongue

image

[Click to enlarge]

Original article here.

Once upon a time, poetry still mattered, and could cause great controversies. No social media for such battles, after all. This poem seems to have cost William Watson the post of UK Poet Laureate.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Aug 13, 2015 - Comments (2)
Category: Poetry, 1900s, Women, Europe, Curses, Slurs, Insults, Vituperation, Libel and Slander

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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.

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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