Weird Universe Blog — May 27, 2017

Nose Billiards

Prof. Henry Lewis — a trick billiardist whose specialty was playing with his nose. He was also a champion at finger billiards. He spent his retirement years, when he was in his 70s and 80s, touring the country doing exhibition matches of nose billiards. As far as I can tell, he's the only person ever to have made a career out of doing this.

Oakland Tribune - June 8, 1919

The News Herald - Oct 22, 1925

Posted By: Alex - Sat May 27, 2017 - Comments (1)
Category: Sports

The Gro-Clock

Thanks god I'm not a parent! Not only the headaches, but the expense! $54.99!

Posted By: Paul - Sat May 27, 2017 - Comments (0)
Category: Technology, Babies and Toddlers

May 26, 2017

Drug-Carrying Pigeons

Same method, 95 years apart.

The Pittsburgh Press - Mar 8, 1922

Pigeon caught with backpack of drugs
BBC News - May 25, 2017

Posted By: Alex - Fri May 26, 2017 - Comments (0)
Category: Animals, Drugs

May 25, 2017

“Follow Me” Cooler

Engineers have created a cooler that will follow you wherever you go. Science marches on!

More info at

Posted By: Alex - Thu May 25, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Inventions

Sathya Sai Baba

"Sai Baba's materialisations of vibhuti (holy ash) and other small objects such as rings, necklaces, and watches, along with reports of miraculous healings, resurrections, clairvoyance, bilocation, and alleged omnipotence and omniscience, were a source of both fame and controversy."

Wikipedia page.

Posted By: Paul - Thu May 25, 2017 - Comments (9)
Category: Cult Figures and Artifacts, Frauds, Cons and Scams, Religion, Superstition, India

May 24, 2017


Sologamy = marrying yourself. Apparently it's a growing trend. A way to say yes to yourself. And there are various companies (such as here and here) that will help you do it.

I don't buy into all the talk about marrying yourself as a form of self-affirmation, but I think there is some logic to the idea that if you know you're never going to get married to someone else — that's your life choice — that you should be able to get some gifts to celebrate your non-marriage. After all, those gifts can really help furnish an apartment or house.

More info:

Below: Charlotte's Sologamy Wedding

Posted By: Alex - Wed May 24, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Weddings

Mystery Gadget 48

What's going on here?

Answer at the link (scroll down).

And after the jump.

More in extended >>

Posted By: Paul - Wed May 24, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Technology, 1910s

May 23, 2017

Lloyd Thomas Koritz — Human Guinea Pig

As a young doctor-in-training at the University of Illinois Medical School in the early 1950s, Lloyd Thomas Koritz volunteered to be a guinea pig in a variety of experiments. In one, he ate a pound of raw liver daily (washed down by a quart of milk) to help study liver metabolism. In a fatigue study he was kept unconscious for 11 hours.

But the most dangerous experiment involved being hung in a harness from a specially-constructed mast and knocked out with anesthesia and curare, so that his breathing stopped. Researchers then tested methods of resuscitating him. They were searching for more efficient ways of resuscitating electrocuted power line workers, so that they could revive the workers while they were still hanging from the poles instead of having to lower them while unconscious to the ground, which takes a lot of time.

I think it would be hard nowadays to get approval to do these kinds of tests on human subjects. Koritz said he disliked the liver-eating experiment the most. In 1953 he was given the Walter Reed Society Award for being willing to repeatedly risk his life for the sake of science.

"Drugged into unconsciousness and paralysis, [Koritz] willingly risked insanity
and death in a significant experiment. This test helped determine the best way
to revive electrically-shocked linemen."
Saturday Evening Post - July 25, 1953

San Bernardino County Sun - Apr 9, 1953

San Bernardino County Sun - Apr 9, 1953

Posted By: Alex - Tue May 23, 2017 - Comments (4)
Category: Science, Experiments, 1950s

Horn OK Please

Atlas Obscura does a great job explaining the wacky phrase from India, "Horn OK Please." But they do not place the video of the song that uses the same title upfront enough for my tastes!

Posted By: Paul - Tue May 23, 2017 - Comments (1)
Category: Languages, Slang, Motor Vehicles, India

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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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