Weird Universe Archive

May 2024

May 31, 2024

Tooth Cap

The Southwark Heritage art museum has a nineteenth-century tooth cap in its collection. It offers this description:

This cap belonged to a street "dentist" or tooth puller. It is made of brown velvet and felt, and decorated with approximately 88 decayed human teeth, once belonging to his patients. The teeth have been drilled and attached with twine. Wearing a cap like this was supposed to imply the "magician" aspect of the dentists work. As teeth pulling was painful and risky and done without anaesthetic, people needed to have some faith in the "dentist", even if it was only the evidence, worn on the cap, that he had successfully plied his trade.



If the cap looks like something you'd like to own, the website toothantique.com claims to be selling them. Newly made tooth caps, not nineteenth-century originals. They're asking only $100. For that price they say you get a cap "Decorated With 40 Real Human Teeth, Drilled And Attached With Twine."

Are they really selling these caps? I'm somewhat doubtful. The picture of their product is the same picture that's on the Southwark Heritage site. But I'm not curious enough to spend $100 to find out what would arrive in the mail.

Posted By: Alex - Fri May 31, 2024 - Comments (1)
Category: Headgear, Nineteenth Century, Teeth

Follies of the Madmen #597

An epic crossover! Rosie (of Bounty fame) meets Mr. Whipple (of Charmin notoriety).

Posted By: Paul - Fri May 31, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Domestic, Hygiene, Advertising, Retailing, Wimps, Milquetoasts and Cowards, 1970s

May 30, 2024

Miniature Golf Record



Page 18 of Pawtucket Times, published in Pawtucket, Rhode Island on Tuesday, November 4th, 1930





Posted By: Paul - Thu May 30, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Sports, World Records, 1930s

May 29, 2024

Bulletproof Clipboards

Ballistic Systems Co. sells bulletproof clipboards, starting at $40. They boast that they've sold "over 170,000 clipboards to law enforcement officers nationwide."

While I'm sure the clipboards really are bulletproof, I'm skeptical about whether they'd be much help in preventing someone from getting shot. Wouldn't the force of a bullet simply knock the clipboard out of their hands?

Contrast this with the Clipboard Gun we've previously posted about.

via Book of Joe



Posted By: Alex - Wed May 29, 2024 - Comments (1)
Category: Police and Other Law Enforcement, Weapons

May 28, 2024

Beer Puppetry

Inventor Avi Zadok was recently granted a patent (No. 11,974,655) for what he calls a "Beer Puppet." It's a contraption that allows people to dangle a cup of beer in front of themselves and manipulate it with strings like a puppet.

Zadok argues in his patent that his invention can "increase the fun and social aspect of beer culture." He speculates it might be adopted by breweries looking for novel ways to market their product at beer festivals, sports games, etc.





I found a website, beerpuppeteergame.com, where you can buy one of these things (cost $115). And the video below shows beer puppetry in action. But it's not clear to me if the website is the work of Zadok or a rival. Perhaps there's fierce competition in the world of beer puppetry.

Posted By: Alex - Tue May 28, 2024 - Comments (1)
Category: Games, Inebriation and Intoxicants, Patents

May 27, 2024

Mr. Analyst, the mechanical golfer

In 1966, Golfcraft of Escondido, California debuted a robot golfer whose job was to test new golf clubs and balls. They held a contest to name him, and after receiving over 1500 entries decided to call him "Mr. Analyst."



More details from the Long Beach Press-Telegram (Aug 21 1966):

The perfect golfer is Mr. Analyst, a robot whose job it is to scientifically test and analyze new designs and materials for golfing clubs. He works for Golfcraft, a manufacturing firm based in Escondido.

The robot is the answer to all those who have ever left a course in disgust, muttering something about that not being a fit game for man or beast.

Mr. Analyst is the product of the tinkering of William J. Glasson, a golfer who also has concluded, from time to time, that it was a game fit not for man or beast.

Glasson started toying with his mechanical monster while trying to figure out scientifically how to lower his five handicap on the links. At the time he had graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and was working on the Falcon missile.

"The monster was still a crude thing then," Glasson reminisces, "mounted on a wooden tripod. And I had to crank it manually to get it to work. At first it would only hit the ball about 125 yards. But, after making several modifications and adjustments it started belting it 200 yards and I got excited about its possibilities."

At a recent demonstration, the robot showed graphically how it has been improved by socking balls one after another in low, screaming trajectories to a distance of 400 yards on the fly. Even that isn't the most amazing aspect of its skills. Its accuracy at this distance is what is truly amazing. All the balls landed within a circle only 15 feet in diameter.

image source: Offbeat Golf (1998) by Bob Loeffelbein



Glasson was granted patent no. 3,373,612 for his invention. His patent drawings show a non-humanized version of his machine.

Posted By: Alex - Mon May 27, 2024 - Comments (2)
Category: Robots, Patents, Golf, 1960s

Sweet Cookie Doll





Posted By: Paul - Mon May 27, 2024 - Comments (1)
Category: Toys, Advertising, AI, Robots and Other Automatons, 1970s

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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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Chuck is the purveyor of News of the Weird, the syndicated column which for decades has set the gold-standard for reporting on oddities and the bizarre.

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