World’s Strangest

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World War I Centennial: Schlieffen Is Dead, but His Plan Lives On

The First World War was an unprecedented catastrophe that killed millions and set the continent of Europe on the path to further calamity two decades later. But it didn’t come out of nowhere. With the centennial of the outbreak of hostilities coming up in 2014, Erik Sass will be looking back at the lead-up to [...]

Oops!

A casual stroll through Gorky Park in Moscow ended awkwardly. The street artist Slinkachu arranged this accident–at least, that’s what I suspect really happened. He writes: Over the past couple of years I have travelled to many other cities around the world, abandoning my little people on the way, and what struck me most is how [...]

Sixteenth Century Frenchman Devises Craiglist

Want to sell an old scythe? Need to hire a swineherd? These days, you’d use Craigslist. But five hundred years ago, that wasn’t an option. Nonetheless, the idea behind Craiglist was present. Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), a prominent French philosopher and writer, wrote about the business model that Craig Newmark would eventually develop: My late father, [...]

The Cafe from Hell

The place above is Le Cafe de L’Enfer, or the Cafe from Hell. This is what Curious History has to say about it: This cavern of writhing demon statues is Le Cafe de L’Enfer (The Cafe from Hell) in Paris’ red light district (aka Pigalle, the neighborhood of the Moulin Rouge). It opened in the late [...]

Link Latte 190

#190 – Week of October 19, 2012 Yuri Gagarin on BBC TV, July 11 1961 – [very cool interview] The Closest The World Has Come to Nuclear War – [Cold War] Seven-hour Nuclear War Plan – [history, transl.] Doomsday Clock: Five Minutes to Midnight- [fascinating] Modern Gyrocar: C-1 self-balancing electric motorcycle – [concept, video] Inscription on the Statue of Liberty [...]

Bouncy Bridge

Now this is a fun way to cross a river! The conceptual Bouncy Bridge is the brainchild of the architect firm AZC. It’s definitely the most in-seine-ly fun way to cross the Seine: An inflatable bridge equipped with giant trampolines, dedicated to [...]

Monstrous, Angelic, Unusual Bridge Sculptures

“QUANTUM SHOT” #801 Link – article by Simon Rose and Avi Abrams Monstrous, Angelic or Just Plain Weird – Unusual Bridge Sculptures, Part One There are bridges in every country, all over the world, each one serving a very functional purpose, so it’s nice to know that some of the [...]

The Surprising Last Words of 11 Entertainers

What do actors, musicians, and writers say when they die? I consulted the reference Last Words of Notable People by Bill Brahms to collect eleven examples. Read on, and get a hanky ready. 1. Bob Hope (1903-2003) The words: “Surprise me.” The story: “Bob” Hope’s full name was Leslie Townes Hope. As an actor [...]

Marie Curie’s Sex Scandal

Sex scandal and Nobel Prize winner don’t usually go hand-in-hand, so that’s why this story about physicist Marie Curie’s torrid love affair with a married man was huge news back then. Why, it even led to a duel and a [...]

Marie Curie’s Sex Scandal and the Duel It Inspired

Getty Images Marie Curie is well known as the first genius to have snagged two Nobel Prizes. The first came in 1903, when she and her husband, Pierre, were awarded a Nobel Prize in physics for their radiation research. Then, in 1911, she nabbed a Nobel in chemistry for her discovery of radium and polonium. But [...]