World’s Strangest

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On the Value of a Good Sawhorse

In his workshop in Rumford Falls, Maine, Gregory Sullivan makes custom furniture by hand and from local materials. He’s also a writer–and a rather elegant one at that. Often he writes about the value of craftsmanship and crafting traditions of the past. Here’s what Sullivan thought about when he saw this photo of Marilyn Monroe: Marilyn [...]

The Late Movies: Songs About Flying

On this day in 1906, the Wright brothers were granted U.S. patent number 821,393 for their “Flying-Machine.” Me? I’m a terrible flyer. I get anxiety sweats and headaches and I hold my neighbor’s hand so tightly that everyone’s knuckles turn white. But when I need to get across the country, I sure do appreciate that [...]

The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert Was 20 Years Ago Today

On April 20, 1992, a veritable “Who’s Who” (and, in a few cases, “Who’s That?”) played before 72,000 fans at London’s Wembley Stadium to celebrate the life of Freddie Mercury and to raise funds for The Mercury Phoenix Trust, an AIDS charity organization that is still active today. Tickets sold out three hours after they [...]

The 10 Weirdest Things You Can Do With Your Ashes

The only certain things in life are death and taxes, and since taxes will never be fun, you might as well try to make your death into something a little entertaining. While most people are laid to rest in a coffin, buried in an urn, or scattered somewhere memorable, there are plenty of other options [...]

The Late Movies: Songs About Guys Named Johnny—Readers Choice

Last week, I rounded up some songs about guys named Johnny. And then, the awesome members of the Mental Floss community did what they do best: suggested tons more! Here’s some of the songs you guys recommended. Can’t Keep Johnny Down A new-ish release from They Might Be Giants, the Johnny in this song is “a [...]

The Vice President Who Wrote a Hit Song

History buffs might know the name Charles Dawes, which probably sounds vaguely familiar but can’t-quite-place-him to the rest of us. Here’s a refresher: he was Calvin Coolidge’s vice president. They hated each other. Long before he was Coolidge’s second-in-command, however, Dawes was a pianist and composer. In fact, he was a member of Phi Mu Alpha [...]

The Quick 10: Your Exclusive Pass to Club 33

Club 33: it’s one of the most exclusive clubs in the world. Nope, it’s not a password-protected bar in New York. And it’s not an invite-only nightclub in L.A. (though it’s in the vicinity). Nope – you can find the uber-private Club 33 located right next to the Blue Bayou restaurant and Pirates of the [...]

Celebrities Write Letters to Their 16-Year-Old Selves

These letters were part of Dear Me: a Letter to My Sixteen-Year-Old Self, a 2009 project to raise money for the Elton John AIDS Foundation. Some of them are funny (love the one from Jonathan Ross), some of them are practical and some of them are a bit of both. I think I see a [...]

13 Exquisite Easter Eggs

Easter time is upon us all and whether or not you celebrate, you can still appreciate the artistry that goes into many Easter eggs. Here are a few of my favorite designs from all over the world. 1. Pysanky Easter Eggs Also known as Ukrainian Easter eggs, these stunning shapes are applied not with dyes or paint, [...]

The Late Movies: Soul Songs

For many religions following Western Christian principles, November 2nd is known as All Souls’ Day, an occasion to remember the dead, especially those who have not yet made it to heaven and need extra prayers to be saved from eternal life in purgatory. In celebration of this holiday, Late Movies brings you some songs about [...]