Weird Universe Blog — June 5, 2023

Battery Tanker

The Japanese company PowerX is building a tanker that will ship energy — not as oil, but rather as electricity stored in giant batteries. It will be shipping this electricity to islands off the coast of Japan.

Why not transmit the electricity the traditional way, with wires? Because undersea cables in this region would be vulnerable to earthquakes. So the company sees a market for delivering the electricity via ships.

More info: New Atlas

Posted By: Alex - Mon Jun 05, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Oceans and Maritime Pursuits | Transportation | Power Generation

June 4, 2023

Jamy Verheylewegen, Underwater Artist

We've previously posted about Zarh H. Pritchard, who pioneered the art of painting underwater. A later practitioner of this subaquatic form of art was Jamy Verheylewegen who begain painting underwater in 1983.

Some info from the site of photographer Christian Voulgaropoulos (with help from Google Translate):

Settled for a few years in Hyères, in the South of France, Jamy devotes himself to his eminently original sport/art: underwater painting.
Harnessed like a professional diver; diving suit, suit and bottles of compressed air, He descends to a depth of about ten meters to spend more than an hour, installed near a "drop-off", to transcribe, using his colored tubes, the wonders of the sea.
He has a secret process, that of depositing colors based on pigments on a prepared canvas and this, in a definitive way. The easel is held to the ground by heavy weights, otherwise the wood it is made of will cause it to rise to the surface.


Source: Odd and Eccentric People (Time-Life Books)

Posted By: Alex - Sun Jun 04, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Art | Oceans and Maritime Pursuits

June 3, 2023

Renske Quax, 2-year-old billiards prodigy

It's impressive that this kid could hold a cue stick well enough to hit the ball at the age of two, let alone sinking shots. That's more coordinated than the 2-year-olds I've known.

I couldn't find any media references to him after 1953. So I'm assuming that he didn't grow up to be a billiards pro.

Miami Herald - Nov 13, 1952

Info from Life magazine (May 18, 1953):

Barely a head taller than the billiard table in his grandfather's cafe in Haarlem, Holland, Renske Quax has played the game since before his second birthday last September, and is getting better by the day. His shots are set up but he holds his cue properly, chalks it as incessantly as a pro and is a miniature whiz at massé shots. After a good shot he applauds himself in mimicry of the cafegoers who stop in to watch him play. But when his game is off he throws tantrums, climbs on the table or starts tossing the balls around.

Life - May 18, 1953

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jun 03, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Sports | Children | 1950s

Michael Lobel’s Trip-Tych

Ultra-spacey! But I can't learn anything about the artist, whose only solo album this is. If he's the same fellow, "Michael Lobel" was part of The Split Level.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Jun 03, 2023 - Comments (0)
Category: Music | Space-age Bachelor Pad & Exotic | Vinyl Albums and Other Media Recordings | 1970s

June 2, 2023


This kid was seriously craving his Hemo fix.

Strange name. Makes it sound like something blood-related, rather than a chocolate milk drink.

Life - Dec 9, 1946

Posted By: Alex - Fri Jun 02, 2023 - Comments (2)
Category: Food | Advertising | 1940s

Unlikely Reasons for Murder No. 14

Source: The Monitor (McAllen, Texas) 02 Nov 1960, Wed Page 1

"I was sick and tired of having to ask for every nickel from my wife," was the reason retired film producer James Howlett gave Glendale police for trying to hire a man to murder his 78-year-old wife.

Posted By: Paul - Fri Jun 02, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Death | Stupid Criminals | Husbands | 1960s

June 1, 2023

The Date Hat

Edward Oliveira of Newport, Rhode Island was granted a patent (#2,749,555) in 1956 for a "date hat". His idea was that, by wearing the hat, a young woman could display whether she was available for a date on a specific day. From the patent:

In high schools, colleges and the like, it is often impossible to carry on very much of a conversation during, or even between classes. Since many dates between boys and girls are most easily made when they are gathered together in school, it is a disadvantage not to be able to tell whether a girl is already dated for a particular day and hour. If a boy knew that one girl is already dated for the particular time he desires, he would quickly be able to attempt to date another girl who was not already dated. However, up to the present time, this has been difficult because, in many instances, there is not sufficient time to talk to every available girl to determine their date status. In order to remedy the above situation, it is one object of the present invention to provide an article of wearing apparel which can be set to indicate to any observer whether a girl has a date for the particular time desired.

I can see a problem with this concept. Would a young woman really want to publicly display that no one had asked her out?

Also, had Oliveira attempted to get dates by systematically asking out every girl in his school? Thus leading to his frustration that there was "not sufficient time to talk to every available girl to determine their date status."

Posted By: Alex - Thu Jun 01, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Patents | Headgear | 1950s | Love & Romance

The 3-D Film Archive

The whole brief fad of 3-D movies was a very weird moment in cinematic history. Luckily for us, there's a man and a site that works to preserve and sell such films. Make a visit to THE 3-D FILM ARCHIVE. Lots of fascinating history there.

Posted By: Paul - Thu Jun 01, 2023 - Comments (3)
Category: Fads | Movies | Technology | 1950s

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