Weird Universe Archive

March 2022

March 11, 2022

Travel through Europe in Ohio

If you want to visit Venice, Rome, Warsaw, Dublin, Berlin, Amsterdam, or Vienna, there's no reason to leave the United States. In fact, one could visit all these places without going outside the borders of Ohio.

This is because Ohio has many cities and towns named after cities in Europe. Far more than any other U.S. state. You can find all the city names listed above in Ohio, plus many more. Think of a European city, and there's probably a town in Ohio with the same name.

Some people go on tours of European cities in Ohio, in lieu of actually going to Europe.

H2G2.com explains why Ohio has all these copycat names:

One reason why some cities were named after geographic areas is because of the canals built in Ohio during the early part of the 19th century. An enormous workforce was required to build the canals, so immigrants were brought in from Europe. Apparently, towns wanted to attract these immigrants to live in their communities to stimulate economic growth. In order to do this many places were often named after the location they had travelled from.

However, Ohioans have put their own unique stamp on many of these copycat names by pronouncing them differently. For instance, Milan, Ohio is pronounced "MY-lun". Some more Ohio pronunciations:

  • Lima (LY-ma)
  • Versailles (ver-SAILS)
  • Moscow (MAHS koh)
  • Russia (ROO she)
  • Vienna (veye EH nuh)
  • Berlin (BUR lynn)

More info: 20 Ohio Towns You're Probably Pronouncing Wrong

Posted By: Alex - Fri Mar 11, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Geography and Maps, Odd Names

Unlikely Reasons for Murder No. 8




Source: NYT for 9/23/1899.




Source: NYT for 1/6/1900.



Source.



Source: Reading Times (Reading, Pennsylvania)01 May 1900, Tue Page 3

Posted By: Paul - Fri Mar 11, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Crime, Death, Theater and Stage, Women, Nineteenth Century, Twentieth Century

March 10, 2022

A Device for Intercepting the Moisture running down the Hands and Wrists when Eating Crayfish

In 1933, the British patent office awarded Edgar Honig of Germany Patent No. 393,673 for this invention. From his patent:

This invention relates to a means for intercepting the liquid tending to run down the wrists and the arms when eating crayfish.

When eating crustacea of this nature, it is found very unpleasant that the liquid emerging therefrom tends to run down the wrists and into the sleeves, this liquid resulting in stains, which it is extremely difficult or impossible to remove.

According to the invention, this drawback is overcome by means of a ring which tightly encircles the wrist and consists of an absorbent material. As a material of this description it is convenient to employ rubber sponge. It is, however, also possible to use paper, fabric or similar materials, which intercept the moisture running over the wrists and absord the same.

I'm not a fan of shellfish, so I wasn't aware how messy crayfish (aka crawfish) could be. But evidently their messiness really bothered Honig.





Below: how to eat crawfish.

Posted By: Alex - Thu Mar 10, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Food, Patents, 1930s

How Cricket Balls Are Made:  Then and Now

Some hand techniques remain unchanged.



Posted By: Paul - Thu Mar 10, 2022 - Comments (0)
Category: Sports, Technology

March 9, 2022

Kinetic Dress

Modeled recently at London Fashion Week.

More info: Jack Irving on Instagram

Posted By: Alex - Wed Mar 09, 2022 - Comments (4)
Category: Fashion

March 8, 2022

Existential Tattoos

I think that in the 1950s anything slightly non-conformist was labelled 'existentialist'.

This tattoo, on the back of a young Italian woman in Milan, Nov. 5, 1952, is in a new fashion taken up by young feminine followers of the post-war existentialist philosophy of Jean Paul Sartre, the French writer. The tattoo reads: "I have loved. I am grateful to God." This girl likes to be called Ginetta Sartre in honor of the leader of the movement. The tattoos are usually sentimental phrases or symbolic drawings. (AP Photo)


Wichita Eagle - Oct 27, 1952



Anyone with an existential tattoo should make sure to also wear an existentialist hat.

Posted By: Alex - Tue Mar 08, 2022 - Comments (0)
Category: Fashion, Philosophy, 1950s, Tattoos

Follies of the Madmen #527

From the "nephew" school of art. "My nephew draws good--we'll get him to do the ad."

Posted By: Paul - Tue Mar 08, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Ineptness, Crudity, Talentlessness, Kitsch, and Bad Art, Music, Advertising, 1970s

March 7, 2022

The Farmer’s Anti-Automobile Society of Arkansaw

I'm going to assume that there never was a "Farmer's Anti-Automobile Society of Arkansaw" (or any other state) and that the list of road rules they supposedly adopted was early twentieth-century humor meant to poke fun at car-hating farmers.

Although some blogs, such as here, seem to think that this list of crazy road rules might have been real.

The Carmen Headlight - Sep 10, 1909

Posted By: Alex - Mon Mar 07, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Clubs, Fraternities and Other Self-selecting Organizations, 1900s, Parody, Cars

The Wonderland of Doo

The history of newspaper comic strips is replete with many oddities.

An excellent blog on the topic, with almost daily posts, is STRIPPER'S GUIDE.

Here's one creation that has received very little attention, based on its scarcity of Google hits. Its creator was Arch Dale.

Each instance featured a big block of text, which I am omitting, save for one sample.

This survey is by no means complete, just a taste.

The strips were also collected in book form.


















Posted By: Paul - Mon Mar 07, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Anthropomorphism, Newspapers, Comics, Surrealism, Fantasy, Twentieth Century

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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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