Weird Universe Blog — September 18, 2020

For Farrah Fanatics

Offered for sale at the height of the Farrah Fawcett mania in the late 1970s — an "authentic deed to a small piece of land that was Farrah Fawcett's early childhood home in Corpus Christi." Only $4.95 each!

The ad doesn't say, but the amount of land a purchaser received a deed to was exactly one square centimeter.

Texas Monthly - Jan 1978

The entrepreneur behind the scheme was Corpus Christi realtor Sam Allen who dreamed up the idea when he learned that a house Farrah had lived in as a child was up for sale.

Fort Worth Star-Telegram - Mar 5, 1978

So what was the address of the house? I'm not sure, because Farrah lived in four different houses in Corpus Christi, and Allen didn't reveal which house it was, saying that he didn't want treasure hunters damaging it. Two of those houses have sold in the past ten years.

I don't know enough about real estate law to know how, or if, his sale of all these micro-deeds would have affected if the house could ever be sold again. Could the house be sitting empty to this day because random people still own various square-centimeter pieces of it? I'm guessing not. Any claim to ownership must have lapsed if they didn't pay property taxes.

Farrah Fawcett in 8th grade

Other examples of Farrah-Mania we've posted about: Ferrous Faucets and Farrah Fawcett Lookalike Contest Winners.

Posted By: Alex - Fri Sep 18, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Celebrities | Real Estate | 1970s

Playing the Serpent

One of our weirder musical instruments.

A site devoted to the serpent.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Sep 18, 2020 - Comments (0)
Category: Music

September 17, 2020

Killed by oranges

Weird way to die — Ingrid Kerztin was walking by the side of the road, minding her own business, when suddenly 16 tons of oranges landed on top of her, crushing her to death.

New York Daily News - July 5, 1984

Posted By: Alex - Thu Sep 17, 2020 - Comments (3)
Category: Death | 1980s

Forkola Jell

"Old Doc Forkola" is a most unfortunate moniker. But was there anything that Forkola Jell couldn't do? Or should we ask, Was there anything that Forkola Jell could do?!?

Source of text.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Sep 17, 2020 - Comments (3)
Category: Frauds, Cons and Scams | Patent Medicines, Nostrums and Snake Oil | Twentieth Century

September 16, 2020

The Great Beauty Contest of Life

"Whatever you do—wherever you go—you are in a Beauty Contest."

Kansas City Times - Mar 12, 1932

Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 16, 2020 - Comments (1)
Category: Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues | Advertising | 1930s

Music Beamed to Astronauts

This NPR feature describes how Mission Control had a tradition of waking up orbiting astronauts with music. But as you can see in the second piece, the playlist was even more extensive at one time.

Source of text.

Posted By: Paul - Wed Sep 16, 2020 - Comments (0)
Category: Music | Spaceflight, Astronautics, and Astronomy | 1960s

September 15, 2020

Teacher fired for in-class castration

June 1992: Dick W. Pirkey Jr., a teacher at Harmony High School in Texas, was fired from his job after a student in his animal husbandry class castrated a pig with his mouth. Pirkey acknowledged that he had described such a procedure to his students, but insisted that the 17-year-old had performed the procedure without his permission and before he could stop it.

Seven months elapsed between the incident and Pirkey's termination. Explaining the delay, the School Superintendent admitted that when the board had first heard about the in-class oral castration they had thought it was a joke and that someone was trying to play a trick on them.

Pirkey appealed his termination, noting that oral castration was described in a state-approved textbook, and that it was also "routinely practiced throughout the state, but not in our locale, and is normally performed on sheep."

However, his firing was ultimately upheld by the State Commissioner of Education who pointed out that instead of stepping in to stop the student from performing the procedure, Pirkey had actually taken pictures of him as he did it. In fact, Pirkey even took a picture of the student "holding the testicle overhead in a victory stance."

Tyler Morning Telegraph - June 20, 1992

Longview News Journal - Feb 26, 1994

Posted By: Alex - Tue Sep 15, 2020 - Comments (3)
Category: Animals | Farming | Education | 1990s

Mystery Illustration 97

What super-famous Hollywood icon is this, beneath her disguise?

The answer is after the jump.

More in extended >>

Posted By: Paul - Tue Sep 15, 2020 - Comments (1)
Category: Celebrities | Disguises, Impersonations, Mimics and Forgeries | Movies | 1930s

September 14, 2020

Music to move families by

"a promotional release given to families who moved in 1960 using Allied Vans services."

image source: Unearthed In The Atomic Attic

You can listen to the entire album via YouTube:

Posted By: Alex - Mon Sep 14, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Music | 1960s

The Return of Pipilotti Rist

Longtime WU-vies will recognize the name of this artist, since we've been covering her almost since the blog commenced. Now, late to the party, THE NEW YORKER has discovered her "genius."

Let us savor one of Rist's newer works, posted to YouTube in November 2019. Don't let the fact that its views number in the low double digits dissuade you from its worth!

Posted By: Paul - Mon Sep 14, 2020 - Comments (2)
Category: Art | Avant Garde | Ineptness, Crudity, Talentlessness, Kitsch, and Bad Art | Magazines | Europe

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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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