Category:
Literature

The Rap Canterbury Tales

You haven't really experienced Chaucer's Canterbury Tales until you've heard the rap version. Performed here by Baba Brinkman.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Feb 14, 2014 - Comments (6)
Category: Literature, Music

Red Seal Comics

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Look at the characters featured in this single issue, and ask yourself if this is not the best comic in the history of the universe.

Read the whole issue here.

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Posted By: Paul - Fri Dec 13, 2013 - Comments (3)
Category: Detectives, Private Eyes and Other Investigators, Eccentrics, Literature, Superheroes, Mad Scientists, Evil Geniuses, Insane Villains, Comics, 1940s

Antics of the Artists



The filmmaker's home page.

Those wacky, outrageous bohemians!

Posted By: Paul - Sat Sep 21, 2013 - Comments (2)
Category: Aliens, Literature, Movies, Avant Garde, Surrealism, Fictional Monsters

A Romany Rhapsody

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I sure wish I could get a ouija board to do all my writing for me!

Read the story here.

Posted By: Paul - Tue Aug 20, 2013 - Comments (8)
Category: Literature, New Age, Superstition, 1920s

The Most Boring Books Ever

Back in 1950, Columbia University Press polled hundreds of editors, writers, booksellers, librarians, literary critics, and general readers in order to produce a list of the 10 most boring books among the great classics. The winners were:
  1. Pilgrim's Progress, Bunyan
  2. Faust, Goethe
  3. Don Quixote, Cervantes
  4. Ivanhoe, Scott
  5. Silas Marner, Eliot
  6. Pamela, Richardson
  7. Life of Samuel Johnson, Boswell
  8. Faerie Queene, Spenser
  9. Paradise Lost, Milton
  10. Moby Dick, Melville
Such lists are always entirely subjective. For instance, I would question how anyone could produce such a list and not include anything from French literature. Take Remembrance of Things Past. That has to be up there among the great snoozers of all time.

Posted By: Alex - Tue Aug 13, 2013 - Comments (19)
Category: Literature, Books, 1950s

Vivacious Chicken

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[Click to enlarge]

An illustration from Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables.

Maybe it's just me, but the notion of carrying a "vivacious chicken" around on one's shoulder strikes my funnybone just perfectly.

Posted By: Paul - Sun Jul 28, 2013 - Comments (9)
Category: Animals, Emotions, Literature, Nineteenth Century

Suicide Note Writing Workshop

Taught by Simon Critchley, who explains that he intends it partially to be "a way of mocking creative-writing workshops." Full article at the New York Times:

With Mr. Critchley kneeling before a blackboard on Saturday and his 15 attendees gathered tightly around, class began with a discussion of the shifting ethics of suicide, from antiquity to modern-day Christianity to right-to-die debates in the news media.
The suicide note, which he identified as a literary genre with a unique form, is a fairly recent invention coinciding with the rise of literacy and the press, he told the class.
“In antiquity, there was no need to leave a note,” he said. "It would have been obvious why you killed yourself."

Posted By: Alex - Mon May 20, 2013 - Comments (6)
Category: Death, Literature

When Thief Meets Thief

One of the weirdest writers in history was Harry Stephen Keeler.

His sentences were as eccentric as his plots. Viz:

"I know how to get to the inside of a chilled-steel receptacle with no more noise than a cockroach, drunk after emerging from an uncorked gin-bottle in a garbage can, would make as he sneaked back to Mrs. C., waiting up to biff him on the beezer for leaving her to mind the youngsters while he went skyhooting. "

That gem comes from When Thief Meets Thief.

You may read the first chapter here.

Or listen to it below.

Or buy the book here.

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For subsequent chapters, visit here.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Feb 28, 2013 - Comments (18)
Category: Literature, Stupid Criminals, Outsider Art, 1930s

Whitby Goths



A more recent report and video here.

Posted By: Paul - Mon Apr 30, 2012 - Comments (2)
Category: Fashion, Horror, Literature, Subcultures, Europe

The Lottery—The Sexy Edition

If people bought this 1950 edition of The Lottery by Shirley Jackson thinking it would be a sex-filled potboiler, they were in a for a bit of a disappointment.


Posted By: Alex - Fri Mar 23, 2012 - Comments (8)
Category: Literature, Books

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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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