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Where Van Halen Meets Librarians: The Weirdest Thing You will See Today

To describe this video in only one word would never do it justice, but if I had to: bizarre. Featuring a stern, turtlenecked librarian named Betty Glover, this is nearly five minutes of surreal, spoof workout advice for librarians, made in 1987 by an Arizona State University student. While disturbingly sizeist and focused on the […]

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Diagram Prize for Oddest Book Title of the Year shortlist

The Diagram Prize just may be my favorite literary award (although the Bad Sex Award is right up there), it’s an annual competition to determine the strangest book title published in the last 12 months – many previous winners can be found in the halls of the Weird Book Room.  From Stray Shopping Carts of […]

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The Antikamnia Chemical Company’s Skeleton Calendars

These are fantastic and I would like to own one. The images come from Antikamnia Skeleton Calendars, put out by the Antikamnia Chemical Company, St. Louis, MO. Antikamnia’s analgesic compound, which was never patented, was marketed as a ‘proudly ethical drug’ and used to treat headaches, fever, stomach aches, nervousness, insomnia and ‘the blues’. It […]

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Board Games for Book Lovers

There are few things I like to do better than play a good game. Rummoli, Texas Hold ‘Em, Charades, Cribbage, Pictionary – you name it, I’ll probably love playing it. And of course it goes without saying that I adore books, so I was happy to find that Flavorwire has a list of 10 Literary […]

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Roald Dahl was factually inaccurate

Students at Leicester University have answered the age old question of “Was Roald Dahl being scientifically accurate when he described 501 seagulls lifting a giant peach in his classic children’s story James and the Giant Peach.” The students estimated the size of the peach, described by Dahl as being tall and wide like a small […]

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20 Tolkien Tattoos

Flavorwire found 20 Tolkien-themed tattoos, and they are totally worth scrolling through. Many of them are beautifully done, still more of them are surprisingly elaborate, and one of them – the eye of Sauron on the back of that chap’s neck – is terrifying. Imagine waking up with that looking at you? I would never […]

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The Federal Case of Hemingway’s Key West Cats

In 2010, I was lucky enough to visit Key West, Florida. A wonderful escape from Canadian winter. While there, I spent an enjoyable couple of hours touring the grounds and house of Ernest Hemingway’s Key West Home, where Hemingway lived from 1931 until 1939 with his second wife (of four!), Pauline. We were certainly enchanted […]

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Book-themed Fragrance: Paper Passion is “Perfume for Booklovers”

“The smell of a freshly printed book is the best smell in the world.” Karl Lagerfeld To a real booklover, the smell of books is a glorious and varied thing. New ones smell of ink and laminate and cardboard and sometimes a little like the store you bought them at, if it’s one of those […]

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Cookin’ With Coolio and 25 Other Unlikely Celebrity Cookbooks

I recently took a trip to Atlanta, and was lucky enough to stumble across word of Gladys Knight’s Chicken and Waffles restaurant. We went, we ate (fried chicken! waffles! macaroni and cheese! collard greens! etc.) and it was glorious. One of my true disappointments in life thus far is that we were too full to […]

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Ineradicable Stain: A Story Told Through Tattooed Words

Begun in 2003, this must be old news to many, but it’s new to me. A writer named Shelley Jackson (I suspect she’s a quirky individual: the bio on her web site claims she was “extracted from the bum leg of a water buffalo in 1963 in the Philippines”) launched a project called Skin in […]

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