Weird Universe Blog — April 18, 2024

Meet Miss Electronic

Once upon a time answering machines were considered strange and dumbfounding.

Wilmington News Journal - Mar 31, 1956

Posted By: Alex - Thu Apr 18, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Technology | Telephones | 1950s

April 17, 2024

One’s really his mother…

A young man with Oedipus issues.

Better Homes and Gardens - Sep 1969

Posted By: Alex - Wed Apr 17, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Advertising | Parents | 1960s

Unauthorized Dwellings 33

Read the full story here.

NOTE: image is generic.

A man in Washington smelled cigarette smoke in his home and traced it to an upstairs loft. There he found a makeshift bed, a running heater, half-eaten food, and drugs. The following day the suspect returned to the house and was taken into custody, police said.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Apr 17, 2024 - Comments (2)
Category: Drugs | Stupid Criminals | Unauthorized Dwellings | Twenty-first Century

April 16, 2024

Saved pennies crash through ceiling

Aug 1947: Clarence Ellsworth had been saving pennies by dropping them through a crack in his attic floor. Finally, when the number of pennies reached 1,672, the weight of the pennies broke through the ceiling and landed in his living room.

This raises the question: how much did 1,672 pennies weigh?

According to Wikipedia, pennies issued before 1982 each weighed 3.11 grams since they were made from 95% copper. After 1982, the U.S. Mint substituted a copper-plated zinc penny that weighed less.

3.11 times 1,672 comes out to 5200 grams (rounding up) — or approximately eleven and-a-half pounds.

I'm surprised that was enough to break his ceiling. Perhaps there were other issues, such as water damage, that contributed to the break.

According to an online inflation calculator, $16.72 in 1947 money would be worth $234.18 today. And the repairs would have cost approximately $175 (in today's money).

Bangor Daily News - Aug 12, 1947

Posted By: Alex - Tue Apr 16, 2024 - Comments (2)
Category: Money | 1940s

Into the Stream

Betcha can't watch/listen to the whole thing!

The artist's Wikipedia page.

Posted By: Paul - Tue Apr 16, 2024 - Comments (2)
Category: Music | Avant Garde | Asia | Cacophony, Dissonance, White Noise and Other Sonic Assaults

April 15, 2024

Multi-dimensional rotating chess

Recently patented by Craig Wallace Coulter. Patent No. 11,896,913.

Posted By: Alex - Mon Apr 15, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Games | Patents

Follies of the Madmen #592

Posted By: Paul - Mon Apr 15, 2024 - Comments (0)
Category: Television | Advertising | Smoking and Tobacco | 1950s

April 14, 2024

Crying Artist

Controversy recently struck the General Theologial Seminary in New York after it invited an artist to perform in the college chapel. Details from Church Times:

The Episcopalian seminary had invited the artist Lia Chavez to perform Water the Earth, in which she intended to sit in the college chapel and weep for five hours, as part of an expression of "tears as a sacred act", the press release for the event stated. Ms Chavez said that her performance would be "harnessing and ritualizing the mysteriously regenerative power of releasing emotional tears as an offering to the earth", and watchers would be invited to weep with her.

I know some people can cry on command, but for five hours?

The Episcopalian community thought the event sounded way too weird, forcing the seminary to cancel the performance before it happened.

Posted By: Alex - Sun Apr 14, 2024 - Comments (2)
Category: Religion | Performance Art | Sadness

April 13, 2024

Moist Towelette Museum

Located inside Abrams Planetarium on the campus of Michigan State University. The curator of the museum is Planetarium employee John French who's been collecting towelettes since the 1990s.

The crown jewel of the museum's collection seems to be the Star Trek towelettes.

Other interesting towelettes include Mammo-wipes and Xerox typewriter waterless handcleaners.

More info: Moist Towelette Museum

Posted By: Alex - Sat Apr 13, 2024 - Comments (1)
Category: Museums | Baths, Showers and Other Cleansing Methods

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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2016 by the author of the post, which is usually either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.

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