Weird Universe Blog — September 25, 2022

Would-Be Test-Tube Mothers of the 1930s

1939: Having filed for divorce from her husband, Mrs. Virginia Cleary announced that she was seeking a "perfect specimen of manhood" in order to father a "test tube" baby with her. Never mind that the technology for this didn't exist, and wouldn't for another four decades.

She consulted with a doctor to determine what qualities the father of her "eugenic baby" would need to have:

  1. Between 28 and 32 years of age;
  2. Athletic in type, preferably light-haired;
  3. Unmarried, good habits, moderate in smoking and drinking;
  4. Strong, well-formed features;
  5. Strong personality, good ancestral background;
  6. Weight between 160 and 175 pounds.

San Francisco Examiner - Apr 26, 1939

Inspired by the example of Mrs. Cleary, Jean Gordon came forward and announced that she too wanted to mother a "test tube baby."

Des Moines Tribune - Apr 28, 1939

Posted By: Alex - Sun Sep 25, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Babies | 1930s

September 24, 2022

Asparagus Divination

Jemima Packington divines the future by interpreting asparagus. She calls this the art of Asparamancer. She throws the asparagus in the air, and where they land tells her the future. Using this method, she claims to have correctly foreseen Brexit, Prince Philip's death, Theresa May's resignation, and the Queen's death.

The latest thing that the asparagus have told her: "King Charles will take a step back, due to his age, and make William Prince Regent."

More info:

Posted By: Alex - Sat Sep 24, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Predictions | Royalty | Vegetables

GI Joe Trouble Shooter

The video is a hoot, what with a deranged bird and the famous "Kung Fu Grip." But I am also intrigued by the descriptions of the control panel buttons. Did the set come with labels so you could change the button names? I suspect not. So..."Washington" is a given. Stay in touch with HQ. "Code X7" is suitably mysterious. But "Jungle" and "Arctic" are ultra-generic, whereas "Burma" and "Tibet" are ultra-specific. Why those two countries anyhow? Commie (Cobra) hotspots?

A page devoted to the toy.

Posted By: Paul - Sat Sep 24, 2022 - Comments (0)
Category: Animals | Military | Motor Vehicles | Toys | 1970s

September 23, 2022

Survival on Mayonnaise Alone

Never mind that Eiichi Urata managed to survive for 15 days on mayonnaise alone. What seems stranger to me is that he decided to climb a mountain and took only two jumbo squeeze-tubes of mayonnaise as his food.

Tampa Bay Times - May 27, 1999

Posted By: Alex - Fri Sep 23, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Mayonnaise | 1990s

The National College Queen

This contest for top female college student ("fifty percent beauty, fifty percent brains") appears to have begun in 1953:

Source: ETSU Collegian (Johnson City, Tennessee) 01 Apr 1955, Fri Page 5

The first photo below is from 1969, and I can't envision the contest surviving much beyond that revolutionary date.

Source: The Aggielite (Tishomingo, Oklahoma) 15 Mar 1955, Tue Page 1

It was once so popular, it was televised nationwide.

Source: The Kingston Daily Freeman (Kingston, New York) 10 Jun 1967, Sat Page 16

Posted By: Paul - Fri Sep 23, 2022 - Comments (3)
Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests | Beauty, Ugliness and Other Aesthetic Issues | Intelligence | Television | 1950s | 1960s

September 22, 2022

Udon Noodle Blanket

Japanese spa chain Goku no Kimochi has created a blanket based on udon noodles. The first picture shows some udon noodles. The second and third photos show the blanket.

The idea is that you can easily stick an arm or leg out through the 'noodles' if you feel hot. In this way, it is a "user-configurable blanket."

More info:,

Posted By: Alex - Thu Sep 22, 2022 - Comments (2)
Category: Sleep and Dreams

September 21, 2022

The New Eyelashes

Modern Mechanics - July 1932

Posted By: Alex - Wed Sep 21, 2022 - Comments (0)
Category: Fashion | 1930s | Eyes and Vision

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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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