Monday, October 31, 2016

Real Zombie Tale For Halloween...!

As strange as it sounds to us in this day and age, persistent tales around the world talk about Zombies all the time.

So many of these tales come from places like Haiti and the other islands. Could there actually be something to them?

Felicia Felix-Mentor

Felicia Felix-Mentor reportedly died in 1907, after a sudden illness of the type that Haitian belief finds to be characteristic of a person marked to be made into a zombie. In 1936, a woman (either nude or in ragged clothing, depending on the source) was found wandering the streets, and made her way to a farm which she claimed belonged to her father. The owners identified the woman as Felicia Felix-Mentor, long thought dead, and Felix-Mentor’s husband also confirmed this. Due to her poor health, she was sent to a government hospital. A doctor who interviewed her described her behavior:

Her occasional outbursts of laughter were devoid of emotion, and very frequently she spoke of herself in either the first or the third person without any sense of discrimination. She had lost all sense of time and was quite indifferent to the world of things around her.

Now what I understand about these Zombies is that they are not the flesh eating kind that we see in the movies now days. Just some very sick folks that suffer from a unknown illness of some kind. What ever the cause, I want no part of it, ya know?

Coffee out on the patio this morning. It's declared Zombie free!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Some Halloween 'Toons...

I figured that since tomorrow is Halloween, we would scare up some 'toons to match the mood.

And maybe just one more...

That's all for today. Hope you all have a great SAFE Halloween!

Coffee out in the regular spot...OK?

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Bald For A Good Reason...!

When we look back at some of the images that portray Egyptian rulers, we might wonder why they are all bald. Turns out they had a good reason for shaving their heads.

It seems that the folks back then had a real problem with head lice. I never would have guessed, but I do have to wonder what other secrets about the Pharaohs we didn't know. It does kind of make you more than a little curious, doesn't it?

Lice Was So Bad That People Just Gave Up On Hair

Most people shaved their heads in ancient Egypt. We know this from pictures and from records written by people in other countries who looked at Egypt’s fashion choices and puzzled over why Egyptians thought going bald was such a good look.

Today, though, historians are pretty sure they know why. Lice were everywhere in ancient Egypt. The tombs of Egyptian rulers are infested with lice, apparently flooding out from the remains of the bodies.

The ancient Egyptians had lice remedies, but they either didn’t work or weren’t worth the hassle. Most people got so fed up with the nationwide infestation that both men and women shaved every hair clean off their bodies. Women usually wore wigs—hair that could be discarded when it got infested—while some others just went around completely shaved from head to toe.

I figured that head lice was a pretty good way to celebrate the Saturday before Halloween. I picked this article up from the folks at Listverse, BTW.

Coffee out on the patio this morning. No lice in sight...

Friday, October 28, 2016

Please, Please Don't Smile...!

Last week we talked about the fashion statement of ridiculously high heel shoes back in the Victorian days.

Today, let's expand that to old Japan and a crazy fashion that started there. Not only the women, but to even some men. This one is beyond understanding, I'm afraid!

Blackening Your Teeth

Photo credit:

Until recently, women in Japan took dentistry in a different direction. They agreed that tooth decay was one of the best looks out there. So if a woman’s teeth weren’t falling out on their own, she’d paint them black.

Japanese women have been blackening their teeth for so long that we aren’t sure when or why they started doing it. At the very least, by about AD 900, women were painting their teeth black. Shortly after, men started doing it, too.

The Japanese mixed hot water, sake, and red-hot iron in a pot and let it sit for five days. A black scum would rise to the top, which they would scrape off and rub on their teeth.

Eventually, the look went out of fashion. In 1870, it was banned outright, but that was nearly 1,000 years after it started. Japanese people spent the better part of a millennium trying to look good by imitating tooth decay.

It seems to me that the only folks really behind this movement had to be the dentist and I can't even imagine them being in favor.

Coffee out on the patio this morning!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Some Old And Interesting Carved Balls...!

The balls are an interesting find, mainly because no one seems to know exactly what they are or what their use was. It certainly doesn't look like anything used for playing a game, does it?

The Carved Stone Balls

Photo credit:

If you ever want to annoy a British archaeologist, ask about the carved stone balls. They have been found in archaeological sites across Great Britain and Ireland (although most are in Scotland), and nobody has any idea what they are.

Most of the balls date to the Late Neolithic, from about 3000–2500 BC. They are almost identical in size and are all carved with circular knobs surrounding the central sphere. The quality of the carving varies, although all show some attempt at symmetry.

There are various theories as to their use, all of them unproven and most of them wildly implausible. We can say that the balls served no practical purpose since they rarely show any signs of wear or damage. Oddly, it’s rare for more than one ball to be found together, although three were discovered at the Skara Brae site in Orkney.

I was wondering about the size, but all I could find was a statement that they were about 2.5 inches in diameter.

Coffee out on the patio this Summer like morning.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Navajo Chants For Western Wednesday...!

Although much of the traditional practices of Native Americans is gone now, some of it was saved in the form of photographs.

Navajo Chants

Photo credit: Edward S. Curtis

In the 1930s, a photographer named Edward Curtis stayed with the Navajo people. He photographed them in their ceremonial costumes, determined to preserve the memory of a culture that he feared was dying.

He took pictures of the Navajo people using some incredible masks in their ceremonies, meant to look like their gods. This one is of the god Nayenezgani, the Slayer of Alien Gods, who they would call upon for miraculous births or for help in war.

During their chants, a man would wear a costume imitating on of their gods and would dance and act out performances. The chants would tell stories and ask for help from spirits, who might give luck or exorcise evil spirits.

It's only through the efforts of folks like Mr. Curtis that we have an accurate record of many of the costumes used in their ceremonies available to us today. Hats off to this gentleman and the others like him.

Coffee out on the patio today.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Are We Being Watched...?

You bet we are. It would seem that more and more every day, our movements are being covered.

To some this is comforting, while others find it to be more than a little unsettling. Here are some of the facts from Listverse.


Although they stated the flights were completely lawful, in March 2016, the United States government admitted that it used drones to spy on American citizen for non-military purposes.

The details were only partially released, but it seemed the majority of the missions were said to be involved in search-and-rescue missions or to track wild fires and floods. Although this would seem perfectly understandable and even logical, perhaps because the FBI have admitted to using drones to spy as part of past investigations, the news made many American uneasy. An analyst at the time, Jay Stanley, also stated that due to technology moving as fast as it did, laws may need to be revised.

Now, I don't know about you, but I find this to be a little disturbing. Not that I'm doing anything wrong, but just on general principles, ya know?

Coffee out on the patio this morning, where Summer is back again.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Not So Friendly Bees...!

Here is a story almost made for a horror movie, but unfortunately it really happened!

I can think of nothing else right off the bat that would be more terrifying that this, can you?

The Swarm

As two young hikers got ready for an easy jaunt through a park in Arizona during the day, a cloud suddenly appeared on the horizon. The cloud of thousands of angry, swarming bees immediately seemed to zero in on one unfortunate 23-year-old man.

As his horrified companion watched, the man was set upon by the entire swarm. A fellow hiker and a pair of park rangers were unable to even approach the man, who was completely enveloped by bees. Responders reported that the man was still covered with bees when he was loaded into an emergency vehicle. The entire swarm even pursued the responders as they rushed him to the hospital.

Upon arrival, the swarm had finally dissipated enough for the man to be treated but only because the bees had done their job. The man died shortly thereafter.

Just imagine the pain that poor man had to endure, not to mention the horror of being stung to death! Talk about feeling helpless...

Coffee out on the patio again this morning. Temps are on the rise once more!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

More "Toons For Sunday...!

Getting back to the cartoons for today. Hard to pass up a chance to show some of them, ya know?

And maybe just one more...

Guess that will have to do this morning. Have a great day!

Coffee out on the patio again today.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

"Eye" Saw You...!

This time of the year seems to call for creepy stories, doesn't it? That's where the Victorian Era folks come in handy.

In past post, we've seen some of the strange practices they had. So, from the folks at Listverse, here is another!

Imprinting On The Eyes Of Condemned Criminals

Photo credit: The Chirurgeon’s Apprentice

Optography is the practice of analyzing the eyeball to reproduce the last image it saw. If that sounds nuts, it’s because it is. Not that this stopped the Victorians from trying. From 1880 onward, scores of condemned men were asked by scientists to look at dramatic things just before they were executed.

Wilhelm Kuhne led the charge. In 1880, he acquired the head of guillotined murderer Erhard Gustav Reif and examined his eyeballs for images of violent movement. As time went on, the experiments became more elaborate. One condemned man was asked to keep his eyes completely shut as he was led onto the scaffold and to snap them open the second before he was hanged. Strangely, he acquiesced.

Such experiments were so numerous that optography acquired a respectable sheen. As late as 1927, murderers destroyed their victims’ eyeballs to prevent identification by optography.

I reckon to some of the so-called scientists of that time, this somehow made perfect sense. Like I said, strange studies were going on at that time!

Coffee out on the patio this morning. I have some cheese cake I'll share.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Catchy Recruit Song...!

Trouble is, this little ditty was a recruiting song for pirates. That's right...pirates!

Ya see, many of the songs that we sang with our kids had some rather disturbing origins. This is only one of many!

“Sing A Song Of Sixpence” Was A Pirate Recruiting Song

Photo credit: Jean Leon Gerome Ferris

Originally, “Sing A Song of Sixpence” wasn’t sung by kids—it was sung by pirates. And it wasn’t just a song. It was a coded message.

When a crew would dock into a harbor, they’d often need to hire more people. Pirates, though, can’t exactly put up a billboard advertising that they’re looking for people to rob and plunder. So, they started singing a song of sixpence whenever they wanted to let people know they were hiring.

The “sixpence” was advertising the daily pay on the ship, and “a pocket full of rye” was a promise to provide each pirate with a leather bag full of rye whiskey. The “blackbirds” were pirates, and a pie was a trap. With us, the song promised, you’ll lure rich ships into thinking you’re their friend—and then spring out and raid their riches.

If you want to know of some other songs with strange origins, you can find them right here!

Coffee out on the patio this morning. Low 70s right now...

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Now This Is Shocking...!

Sometimes I have to wonder if the folks of the Victorian Era were mostly nuts! Sometimes there isn't any doubt!

Electrocuting Their Own Genitals

Photo credit:

The Victorians liked men to be men, and any sign of unmanliness was a serious cause of concern. To battle weakness and deficiencies of “masculine energy,” Victorian scientists came up with one of the most absurd cures ever: a belt that delivered constant electric shocks to the subject’s genitals.

These were the days when electricity was so new that it was considered a potential cure-all for just about everything. Just as wackos in the 1950s claimed that radiation could heal anything, so too did Victorians consider electricity a kind of wonder drug.

The experiments were considered such a success that their use expanded to curing impotence, and they started appearing for sale in magazines. Strangely enough, they never really caught on with the general public, who seemed unwilling to embrace severe shocks to their genitalia.

I have a pretty good idea as to why this didn't catch on with the general public. I know I wouldn't have used one, thanks just the same!

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Ned Christie For Western Wednesday...!

Here is another character from the days of the old west that gave lawmen a run for their money.

Turns out he was in the right to do so. Here is his story straight from the folks at Listverse.

Ned Christie

People said Ned Christie was a shapeshifter, able to morph into an owl or hog when enemies approached. That would’ve been a good trick, since Ned Christie had a lot of enemies. For five years, this giant fought the best lawmen in the Indian Territory, and each time, he outwitted, outgunned, or outran his foes.

His life as a fugitive started in 1887 when Deputy US Marshal Dan Maples was gunned down. Authorities arrested a man who claimed Christie was the killer. Ned was a member of the Cherokee National Council and had been in town on tribal business when Maples was shot. When he learned he was a suspect, Christie refused to turn himself in.

He skipped town and hunkered down inside his home. With friends and relatives acting as sentries, the Cherokee held off lawman after lawman, including the legendary Bass Reeves, until 1889, when they set his cabin on fire.

Though the flames blinded his right eye, Christie escaped into the hills, where he built his Cherokee castle. It was a fort inside a heavy wooden wall with sand filling the gap. And for good measure, Christie built the thing on a cliff inside a natural rock barrier.

Christie defended his fortress for three years until Deputy Marshal Paden Tolbert showed up with 25 men, a load of explosives, and an Army cannon. Over the next few days, lawmen fired 38 cannonballs and 2,000 bullets before rushing the cabin with an improvised wooden shield and several sticks of dynamite. The fort exploded, forcing Christie to make a run for it. With a pistol in each hand, he charged the posse like Butch and Sundance but was cut down.

As Christie’s corpse made its way to Fort Smith, crowds gathered to get a look at the famous outlaw. Ned’s body was even propped up for photos at the Fort Smith courthouse. Then in the early 1900s, a witness came forward and testified that someone else had shot Dan Maples. Ned Christie was an innocent man.

Many innocent folks were hung back in those days, it seems. Kinda a rush to justice, I reckon.

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Now Those Are Tall Shoes...!

I often think that today's fashion is crazy, but it seems that it has always been that way!

Once in a while there comes something so bizarre it needs some attention. This is one of those crazy styles that thankfully didn't last that long.

High Heels That Were 0.6 Meters (2 Ft) Tall

Photo credit: Victoria And Albert Museum

In the Middle Ages, Florence was the style capital of the world. There, the ladies pulled out every stop to make sure that they looked good. No trend, though, compared to the dignity and beauty of wearing chopines, platform shoes with massive wooden heels that were sometimes more than 0.6 meters (2 ft) tall.

The look became so popular that it spread to men, too. Since people were essentially walking on stilts, getting around was pretty hard. But Florence’s fashionistas made do by hobbling with canes.

Most people outside of Florence thought that the look was ridiculous. Some even called it “sinfully vain.” The church, though, begrudgingly accepted it. At the very least, they accepted that wearing chopines kept women from dancing—and that, after all, was the worst sin of all.

If anything, the fashion back then was way far crazier back then, know what I mean?

Coffee out on the patio today!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Urban Legend For Monday Mystery...!

Today we are going to post about just one of the many urban legends that abound in our society. Let's consider the legend of the man under the Bunnyman Bridge.

There is a kernel of truth to this story You can read more about it right here, if you want.

Bunnyman Bridge
Clifton, Virginia

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

According to legend, a very strange figure haunts a railway overpass outside Clifton, Virginia. The sinister soul, sometimes dressed in a white costume with long ears and wielding an axe, is the inspiration for Colchester Overpass’s more widely-used nickname: Bunnyman Bridge (or Bunny Man Bridge).

One of the most common origin stories asserts that in 1904, a murderer from an insane asylum, Douglas Grifon, escaped a transport vehicle which crashed into the overpass. Rabbit carcasses, some of which looked as though they had been ripped apart by human teeth, began littering the area. The escapee was eventually caught, and subsequently killed by an oncoming train. His spirit, though, is said to haunt the area to this day.

Somehow, just knowing where a story comes from doesn't stop it from being more than a little disturbing to me...know what I mean?

Coffee out on the patio this morning. Just stay in the light, OK?

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Bluegrass Sunday For A Change Of Pace...

Instead of cartoons today, we are going to have a little bit of music! Hope you like it!

And this next one ain't Bluegrass, but it's a memorable piece!

Have a great Sunday! Coffee is ready on the patio!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Another Creepy Mushroom Story...!

For some reason, I got caught up on these strange looking mushrooms and the information about them.

Listverse is a good source for these articles and many more like them. Maybe I like them because it's close to Halloween...I don't know. I hope you find them interesting.

Dead Man’s Fingers

Many fungi live unseen beneath the soil for most of the year. The only time you see them is when they poke up their spore-producing structures. Mushrooms are just the way that fungi spread their descendants. Not all fungi produce mushrooms, however.

Xylaria polymorpha, commonly known as dead man’s fingers, sends up branches of gnarled-looking black structures. Their common name is apt because they look as if they could well be the fingers of some dead man trying to scratch his way out of the earth. The black surface is the spore-producing part of the fungus, which lives on the decaying matter of plants beneath the surface.

Mother Nature has some really creepy critters growing. Fun to hunt for them, but best to do it in the light of day, ya know?

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Bleeding Tooth Mushroom For Freaky Friday...!

Just in time for Halloween, it's a scary look at one strange little mushroom.

I know I should call it fungus instead of mushroom, but I've been calling 'em mushrooms since I was a kid and changing now would just be too troublesome. I'm fairly set in my ways, ya know?

Devil’s Tooth

Photo credit: Bernypisa

Hydnellum peckii goes by many common names: bleeding-tooth fungus, strawberries and cream, red-juice tooth, and Devil’s tooth. All refer to the shocking appearance of the fungus. From the top of the cap, a vivid red fluid is exuded.

The fungus lives with pine trees, attached to their roots, and helps them to gain nutrients from the soil. This is a common strategy, and many plants exist in a symbiotic relationship with fungi. The fine strands of the fungi can penetrate more efficiently into the soil than roots. The plants provide the fungi with sugars, and the fungi offer mineral nutrients in return.

No one is certain why the fungus produces the bloodlike substance. Analysis of the fluid has found that it contains atromentin, a chemical with anticoagulant properties. So the bleeding-tooth fungus could be effective in making you bleed.

I'm sure that I did a post about this strange looking plant before, but I figured that we should view it again for Freaky Friday, cause if this ain't freaky then nothing is!

Coffee out on the patio again today! Back to Summer weather with temps in the high 80s.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Cataloging Space Junk...!

Boy, talk about an impossible (or close to it) undertaking, this has to be number one on the list.

I would imagine these folks can get some pretty massive headaches. I don't care what kind of equipment you have on hand, the responsibility is massive. There is a lot riding on this job being done right ya know?

The US Air Force Catalogues And Tracks Space Junkspace-debris

Photo credit: NASA

Since the early 1980s, the US Air Force has maintained a dedicated team that logs and tracks as much space debris as possible. Over 20,000 individual items at least the size of a small ball are being tracked as well as about 500,000 marble-sized pieces of debris—and that number looks likely to increase.

Each of these items is traveling around the Earth at around 28,000 kilometers per hour (17,500 mph). Should any of them strike another item—be it more space debris, a “live” satellite, or even the International Space Station—the consequences would be tragic. Even a single speck of paint (which is too small to track) hurtling around the planet can cause considerable damage to spacecraft or kill an astronaut during a space walk.

If you want to read some disturbing cats about this space junk problem, maybe you should check out therse scary facts right here!. This is not for those that are feint-hearted.

Coffee out on the patio this morning!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Remembering Tom Mix...!

Very few folks still remember Tom Mix, but we still can thank him for his contribution to the western movies.

A silent film star really got things started in a big way for those of us that like westerns. He probably did as much if not more, for the westerns as anyone in history.

The Cowboy actor Tom Mix dies in an Arizona car accident

On this day in 1940, the famous cowboy actor Tom Mix is killed in a freak car accident near his ranch in Florence, Arizona. Driving his single-seat roadster along a straight desert road, Mix apparently ignored warnings that a bridge was out on a shallow gully and was fatally crushed by a heavy suitcase that flew off the rear shelf of his car.

Mix had been one of the biggest silent movies stars in Hollywood during the 1920s, appearing in more than 300 westerns and making as much as $10,000 a week. Unlike most of the actors appearing in westerns, Mix (whose full name was Thomas Hezikah Mix) had actually worked as a cowboy, served as a soldier during the Spanish-American War, and been a Texas Ranger, so he brought a wealth of real experience to his fictional cowboy characters.

In 1906, Mix joined a Wild West show, and that led him to begin acting in motion pictures four years later. In his many one- and two-reel western adventure films—most of which have been lost because they were released on highly combustible nitrate film stock—Mix helped define the classic image of the western movie cowboy as a rough riding, quick-shooting defender of right and justice, an image that would be copied by hundreds of other actors who followed him. Mix’s real costar in his movies, “Tony the Wonder Horse,” also became very popular and helped set the pattern for the “Silvers” that followed.

With the coming of talking pictures, Mix’s movie career stalled. In 1933, he organized Tom Mix’s Circus and Wild West Show and helped create The Tom Mix Show on radio. But despite the popularity of the radio show (in which Mix did not personally act), Mix never recaptured the success he had known during the golden era of the silent western movies. When he died in 1940 at the age of 60, he had lost most of his wealth and was largely forgotten by the public that once adored him.

Yet Mix is not entirely forgotten today. A black iron silhouette of a riderless bronco marks the site of Mix’s death on the highway about 17 miles south of Florence, Arizona. The so-called “suitcase of death” is preserved at the Tom Mix Museum in Dewey, Oklahoma, along with a life-size replica of Tony the Wonder Horse.

Sad ending for a real legend of his kind. Also sad is the fact that he was largely forgotten by those fans he once had. Such is the way of fame, I reckon.

Coffee inside this morning. Rain is hanging around still.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Arsenic Wafers For Beauty...?

The Victorian age seems to be almost obsessed with death. Seems like the ladies of the times thought that a look akin to death was a sign of beauty.

There were many, many poisons sold as beauty and skin treatments back then, one being the "Arsenic Wafers". Arsenic soap could be found in many drug stores as well.

Arsenic Wafers

Photo: Nesster / Flickr (CC)

The Victorian era was all about “consumption glamour.” Victorians romanticized the tuberculosis epidemic and its effects on appearance; healthy women went to great lengths to achieve that brink-of-death aesthetic. Very pale, translucent skin symbolized both beauty and class, the logic being that wealthy, privileged women didn’t need to work outside. Advertisements for arsenic wafers and face soap promised to “transform the most sallow skin in radiant health; remove pimples; clear the face of freckles and tan; give the complexion an indescribable brilliancy, and lend to every young lady a charm of person which makes her ADORABLE.” Not-so-adorable? The side effects of the arsenic: nervous system damage, kidney failure, hair loss, conjunctivitis, and, ironically, skin lesions.

It's always amazing how some folks will go to such extreme lengths to look least, what they think is better! Now days it would seem that cosmetic surgery is much the same, ya know?

Coffee out on the patio, if it doesn't rain.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Julie Doe For Monday Mystery...!

Here's a little tale of another unidentified corpse, but this one has a bit of a twist to it. You'll see what I mean in a second.

Julie Doe

Photo credit: Orlando Sentinel

On September 25, 1988, a decomposed body was discovered in a wooded area in Lake County, Florida. It was believed that the victim was female, but her cause of death was unknown. She had breast implants, and it was theorized that she had given birth at some point. Unfortunately, the victim could not be identified.

However, when DNA testing was done on the remains in 2015, a surprising discovery was made: The victim had male DNA and was actually transgender. She was given a new name: “Julie Doe.”

Julie was likely undergoing gender reassignment surgery around the time of her death. Since that type of surgery was uncommon in 1988, it was assumed that she was female. Despite this revelation, Julie Doe’s identity has yet to be determined.

I thought that being involved with a gender reassignment would make it a little easier to identify the remains, being as how the proceedure was not that common back then. I reckon I was wrong.

Coffee out on the patio this morning. The mornings are cool and dry.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Sunday Silliness...!

Halloween is right around the corner, ya know. Used to be my favorite time of the year...really!Now days, though, seems like we are living in a horror show and I don't even have a costume. Anyway, let's make the best of this Sunday and try to have some grins!

And one more...

Coffee out on the patio this morning...OK?

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The Victorian Armored Quadcycle...!

As long as anyone can remember, mankind has been very creative in the weapons used to kill each other.

Some of these weapons were brilliant, in a gruesome sort of way. I'm sure many of them inspired more than one invention that excluded killing altogether.

The Motor Scout

Photo via Wikimedia

The Simms Motor Scout was invented by British inventor Frederick Richard Simms between 1888 and 1889. It is one of the world’s first armed vehicles and looked similar to the US-made Davidson-Duryea armed tricycle, except that it fielded a .303-caliber machine gun and ran on four wheels, although it is regarded as a “quadcycle” rather than a car.

The only armor on the Simms Motor Scout was placed around its machine gun, and that was to protect its operator from a frontal shot. The operator’s back and rear were left exposed, leaving him very vulnerable to fire from the side or rear. While the vehicle was never used in warfare, it did reveal that four-wheeled vehicles could also be used as mobile weapons to kill enemy forces on the battlefield. The Motor Scout also motivated Simms to create a fully armored car, which he called the Motor War Car. It’s accepted as the world’s first armored car and in some instances, the world’s first armored tank.

My biggest concern with this thing is being exposed to enemy fire from the side and rear. I reckon it didn't take that long to invent the armored car to prevent that!

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Eating Roaches For Freaky Friday...!

I've heard of some wild and crazy contest in my day, but I think I've found the champion freaky tale for today's post.


In 2012, Edward Archbold, 32, wanted a python very badly. The owner of the Ben Siegel Reptile Store in Florida was giving one away in a contest to the lucky contestant who could eat the most cockroaches. As it was a reptile store, we’re assuming they had a surplus.

Edward was winning against the 30 other competitors when something went terribly wrong. It seems he simply tried to stuff too many live cockroaches down his throat at once.

Before anyone could administer aid, Edward asphyxiated on them. While the store’s owner obviously felt terrible, all contestants had previously signed a waiver “accepting responsibility for their participation in this unique and unorthodox contest.”

I have to wonder if the man in this story was unbalanced or something. I mean he wants a big snake, so he enters a contest eating bugs? What's wrong with folks like this? It's a crazy world out there, ya know?

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

A Fish Gets Revenge...!

For many fishermen, this little cautionary tale is more or less a warning.

You just never know how or when the Fates will catch up to you. This story from Listverse is bizarre to say the least!

The Vengeful Catch

Photo credit:

In 2016, Tanzanian fisherman Robert Mwaijega, 47, and a few friends had spent the day catching a healthy number of perege, a fish native to Tanzania, many of which were still alive and flopping about on the basin by their feet. Suddenly, one fish gave an extra-spirited flop which sent it high into the air and straight into Robert’s mouth.

As Robert’s stunned friends watched helplessly, the fish quickly wriggled its way down Robert’s throat and into his chest. As one of the men bluntly put it, “We tried to assist him, but we couldn’t do much.”

Amazingly, Robert survived his journey to the hospital despite barely being able to breathe. He expired as doctors were readying to perform emergency surgery, which they did anyway to remove the killer fish from the chest of the deceased. A local village leader described the event as “unprecedented.”

Ya know, I've been finned, bitten, hooked, and gaffed while catching fish, but I've never had one force their way down my through before. I hope that I never do, either. Must be a terrible way to go.

Coffee out on the patio this morning. A little cool front is on the way, so they say.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Frederic Remington For Western Wednesday...!

One of the best known artist of the old west, Remington is still popular today.

Few could capture the cowboy and horse together with as much feeling as Remington. I think his work is as close to timeless as possible.

Frederic Remington is born in Canton, New York

Frederic Remington, one of the preeminent artists of the American West, is born this day in 1861 in New York.

The son of a comfortable, if not wealthy, family, Remington was one of the first students to attend Yale University’s new School of Fine Arts. At Yale he became a skilled painter, but he focused his efforts largely on the traditional subjects of high art, not the Wild West. When he was 19, Remington’s father died, leaving him a small inheritance that gave him the freedom to indulge his interest in traveling in the West. As with other transplanted upper-class easterners like Theodore Roosevelt and Owen Wister, Remington quickly developed a deep love for the West and its fast disappearing world of cowboys, Indians, and wide-open spaces. Eventually buying a sheep ranch near Kansas City, Remington continued to travel around his adopted western home, endlessly drawing and painting what he saw.

In 1884, Remington sold his first sketches based on his western travels, and two years later his first fully credited picture appeared on the cover of Harper’s Weekly. After that, his popularity as an illustrator grew steadily, and he returned to New York in order to be closer to the largely eastern market for his work. Frequent assignments from publishers, though, ensured that Remington was never away long from the West, and gave him the opportunity to closely observe and sketch his favorite subjects: U.S. Cavalry soldiers, cowboys, and Native Americans. Remington’s output was enormous, and during the last 20 years of his life he created more than 2,700 paintings and drawings and published illustrations in 142 books and 42 different magazines. Though most of his paintings were created in his studio in New York, Remington continued to base his work on his western travels and prided himself on accuracy and realism-particularly when it came to horses. He even suggested that he would like his epitaph to read: “He Knew the Horse.”

When he died in 1909 in Connecticut, from acute appendicitis, Remington left a body of work that was popular with the public but largely ignored by “serious” museums and art collectors. Since then, though, Remington’s paintings, drawings, and illustrations have become prized by collectors and curators around the world, and prominent museums like the Buffalo Bill Historical Center (Cody, Wyoming) and the Thomas Gilcrease Institute of American History and Art (Tulsa, Oklahoma) have created large permanent exhibitions of his work.

I think that everyone that enjoys western themes should revisit some of Remington's work again. It really never goes out of style.

Coffee out on the patio this morning.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Haunting Unpunished War Criminals...!

It's amazing to me how many totally evil people escaped justice, some aided by our government.

In some cases the evil continued beyond the unpunished war crimes and were, in fact as bad or worse than the original crimes. We never seem to learn.

Dr. Heinrich Muckter

Photo credit: Newsweek

Dr. Heinrich Muckter was caught by the Americans as he was fleeing Krakow University in 1945. He avoided prosecution thanks to Operation Paperclip and entered the German pharmaceutical industry for Chemie Grunenthal, a new company in the 1950s. Muckter experimented with typhoid on prisoners at Auschwitz and other camps, but what he did after he escaped justice was worse.

Muckter was one of the main chemists who invented a drug called thalidomide. The drug was marketed to pregnant women in the 1950s and ’60s by Chemie Grunenthal as a “wonder drug.” Within four years of distribution, more than 100,000 women and children suffered catastrophic miscarriages and birth defects, respectively. Deformed children were born without limbs and had other serious problems.

An investigation into the company ultimately revealed that thalidomide was created by Muckter and other Nazis during the war and was likely tried on prisoners in the camps. Further evidence revealed that the drug may have been a by-product of wartime research into nerve gas antidotes.

How many people world-wide have to suffer before justice is finally served to at least some of these criminals, if any still live.

Coffee out on the patio this morning!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Pajama Girl Murder For Monday Mystery...!

It seems we arer always finding more questions than answers in many of our cold cases. This one is no exception.

Pajama Girl Murder

In 1934, a farmer who had just purchased a prize bull a few kilometers outside Albury was strolling home with the animal when he noticed a bulky object stuck inside a storm water pipe. Upon inspection he discovered it was the body of a young woman who appeared to have been beaten, burned, and shot. She was wearing yellow pajamas and had a towel wrapped around her head.

Because of the lack of progress made by the police in identifying the victim, her body was preserved in formalin and put on display. It took 10 years for the authorities to come to the conclusion that the murder victim was Linda Agostini. Evidently, the first dental record analysis was incorrect but another attempt at dental identification a decade later seemingly confirmed the identity. Shortly after the announcement, Linda’s husband confessed to her murder and pleaded self-defense. He was sentenced to 10 years behind bars.

However, it seems that the woman in the yellow pajamas and Linda Agostini may have been two different people. A book written by Richard Evans claims the two murder victims did not have the same eye color, breast size, or nose shape. A play called The Pyjama Girl was later made based on these same claims.

Like I said, sometimes there are more questions than answers!

Coffee out on the patio again!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Cooler Weather Sunday 'Toons...!

Only slightly cooler and only in the mornings, but I'll take it all the same, ya know?

And one more...

That's enough for today. Have a great Sunday everyone.

Coffee out on the patio again today!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

The Spanking Squad...!

Sounds like a bad joke or maybe a crazy parent, doesn't it?

It actually was an invention of the mayor of a small town in New Jersey, and was used to discipline certain children. I have to believe it was done with the blessing of the parents, but the whole thing sounds gruesome to me.

The Spanking Squad

Photo credit: New York Tribune

Spanking children isn’t the disciplinary measure it used to be. One New Jersey mayor was such a fan that he organized a special spanking squad for young criminal offenders.

Arthur C. Whitaker was mayor of Bridgeton, New Jersey, during the 1910s. He had an automated spanking machine installed at City Hall and sentenced young offenders to it instead of sending them to reformatory schools. Once he passed down sentence, the squad would carry it out. They could regulate the duration and intensity of the spanking based on the harshness of the crime.

According to Whitaker, over 100 boys and a few girls faced the machine during his seven years in office. He labeled the experiment a success, with parents even voluntarily bringing children to him when they misbehaved. Despite this, Whitaker still saw it fit to keep the device a secret while it was in operation.

I was always under the impression that the parents should take care of that sort of thing at home. I certainly don't see any way I would trust the spanking of a child to the mercy of any government agency or their Spanking Machine!

Coffee out on the patio this morning.