Archive for May, 2012

Man, Small Zebra & Parrot Arrested For Drunk Driving

Saturday, May 26th, 2012
noah drunk ark.jpg

A man who brought a small zebra and parrot with him into a bar called the Dog House was later arrested for drunk driving. Police found the two animals in the truck of his vehicle.

Reiter says the zebra and macaw parrot are pets and like riding in the truck. Reiter claims he sometimes takes the animals into the bar, but the owner says they’re not allowed inside.

The makeshift mobile menagerie owner confessed to the cop that he thought someone who took a picture with his animals ratted him out about the tipsy driving. Which reminded him that he should really buy a rat to show off as well.

[Fox News]

New Partnership Brings Us Ever Closer to Yeti Proof

Saturday, May 26th, 2012

A new partnership could herald a historic moment for the cryptozoology community. Venerable Oxford University will partner with the Lausanne Museum of Zoology in utilizing the latest genetic techniques to investigate organic remains of crypto creatures.

Among the list of evidence to study? The Yeti.

Professor Bryan Sykes, a Fellow of Wolfson College, Oxford, who will lead the project with Michel Sartori, Director of the Lausanne Museum of Zoology, said: “Theories as to their species identification vary from surviving collateral hominid species, such as Homo neanderthalensis or Homo floresiensis, to large primates like Gigantopithecus widely thought to be extinct, to as yet unstudied primate species or local subspecies of black and brown bears.

Sykes hopes that the Yeti evidence could lead to new breakthroughs in our understanding of Neanderthals and other early hominids.


Watch as Humans Step Aboard the First Private Spacecraft – In Space

Saturday, May 26th, 2012

For the first time in history, humans stepped aboard a privately developed spacecraft in space. Watch as the ISS astronauts open the hatch and inspect SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft:

Iran: This Text Will Collapse Christianity

Friday, May 25th, 2012

jesus barnabus text.jpg

An Iranian official is stating that a text confiscated by Turkish authorities legitimizes Islam as the only true religion and will sow seeds of discord amongst Christian communities the world over.

The “Barnabus Gospel” is now in Turkey after being confiscated in an anti-smuggling operation. Written on animal hide, the text allegedly delivers a theological body blow to those who believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God.

According to the Barnabas Gospel in Turkey’s hands, Basij Press says, Jesus was never crucified, He’s not the Son of God and He, Himself, predicts the coming of Muhammad. The book even predicts the coming of the last Islamic messiah, the report says.

“The discovery of the original Barnabas Bible will now undermine the Christian Church and its authority and will revolutionize the religion in the world,” the Basij report says. “The most significant fact, though, is that this Bible has predicted the coming of Prophet Mohammad and in itself has verified the religion of Islam, and this alone will unbalance the powers of the world and create instability in the Christian world.”

Turkey plans to put the text on display.


Podcast: Night of the Dragon

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

Skitched 20110225 175343

In a very special episode of Weird Things, Andrew and Justin race to Cape Canaveral, Florida to see history in making as SpaceX attempts to launch their Falcon 9 rocket carrying the Dragon capsule. After already driving six hours there and back only to have the launch scrubbed three days prior, can the boys handle another disappointment? Brian mans the controls from Austin as the WTP discusses all things SpaceX on the eve of their greatest achievement.

Support the show by purchasing Andrew’s BRAND NEW BOOK Angel Killer just click on the image below.


Try out the brand new PODCASTR player, featuring wireless syncing between desktop browsers and iOS devices.

Subscribe to the Weird Things podcast on iTunes
Podcast RSS feed
Episode archive
Download url:


Sponsored by:

Destination Jim

• Copyright sucks

Wanderer’s Path Five free chapters available now!



Social Network


Sons of Anarchy Season 4


Planet Hulk

1,600 Year Old Black Magic Curse Discovered

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

curse hekate.jpg

Talk about holding a grudge.

A pair of 1,600 year old black magic curses have been found, one each for a senator and an animal doctor named Procello who really gets cursed out.

“Destroy, crush, kill, strangle Porcello and wife Maurilla. Their soul, heart, buttocks, liver …” part of it reads. The iconography on the tablet actually shows a mummified Porcello, his arms crossed (as is the deity) and his name written on both of his arms.

And not to be left out, Fistus the senator…

“Crush, kill Fistus the senator,” part of the curse reads, “May Fistus dilute, languish, sink and may all his limbs dissolve …”

The curses are written in Latin and are believed to be directed toward the Greek goddess Hekate. They were originally discovered in Italy in 2009.

[Fox News]

What’s Next for SpaceX

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

This morning the world woke up to find out what the rest of us stayed up and watched happen: SpaceX launched their second spacecraft into orbit on a first of its kind mission to the International Space Station. The next few days involve more technical challenges. In a procedure akin to shooting a missile going 22,000 MPH into a trajectory with the ISS; SpaceX will try to pull off a rare feat capable of only a couple nations.

Meanwhile, what’s next for SpaceX?

Things are only getting started. Elon Musk has proposed an incredibly ambitious program for his company which is barely ten years old.


While SpaceX continues cargo flights to the ISS and launching satellites, next up is the testing and launch of the Falcon Heavy. SpaceX isn’t content with just building a replacement system for getting into space, they want to push the envelope even further.

Falcon Heavy is a rocket with 27 Merlin rocket engines (versus the Falcon 9’s nine). Slated to start testing later this year, Falcon 9 will be the most powerful rocket since the Saturn V’s that took us to the moon.

That’s this year.

The most powerful rocket in the world.

It’s the kind of rocket you’d use to send people to Mars.


Even if it takes another year or two to get this up, anybody wants to to see what a mission to Mars will look like can take a trip like Justin Young and I did last night and watch SpaceX light the candle. This time on 27 Merlins instead of nine.

Check out an animation of this bad boy.

Falcon Heavy press conference


SpaceX is building a Mars capable spaceship today. The bird flying over our heads right now is a proof of concept of a lot of the technologies that will go into making that happen. The most important system is safety.

To make the Dragon spacecraft the safest crewed space vehicle in the world, they need to build an escape system – something the Space Shuttle never had.

The Dragon will have built-in thrusters that will allow the spaceship to separate from the second and third stage in an emergency and land via parachute or rocket power. This rocket-powered launch would even allow the Dragon to land from orbit back on the launch pad without a parachute.

That’s crazy Buck Rogers technology, but that’s the plan. In researching the feasibility of this, Elon Musk and the SpaceX team came up with the most crazy idea yet:


Instead of trying to pull your rockets out of the sea and rebuild them, why not have them land back on the launch pad. While companies like Blue Origin are trying to build a single-stage to orbit system, SpaceX is developing a far more fuel efficient system that would allow each stage to land by itself.

A fully reusable rocket would take off and separate into two stages and a spacecraft. Each one would then use rocket thrusters to land back on the launch pad where they’d be inspected and refueled.

This is the space age version of passenger jets. SpaceX is working on this right now. Not ‘someday’, not in ‘the future’. Engineers are trying to solve these problems as we speak. The systems that go into making the Dragon crew-capable lead into the systems that will allow you to let your primary stage land back on the platform.

The cost savings are incredible. The Shuttle cost from $10-20,000 per pound. Falcon 9 costs about $2,300. A reusable craft takes this below $100. From $10,000 per pound to $100 in a decade. It could even go lower. Cheaper than a space elevator. Now that’s crazy talk.

You can see SpaceX’s vision for this in the animation. You can go outside and look up at the first step towards this right now.

The future is happening.

Elon Musk explaining reusable rockets

Weird Things LIVE at the Dragon Launch

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

Justin Robert Young and Andrew Mayne at the SpaceX launch of the Dragon spacecraft to the International Space Station.

It was EPIC and AWESOME.

Red Tape Delays Opening of Ominous Chamber in Great Pyramid

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Two mysterious ‘doors’ deep inside Egypt’s Great Pyramid were slowly being explored by tiny robots…until political unrest and paperwork brought everything to a screeching halt.

The Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) has paused what’s known as the Djedi Project and asked them to resubmit their permits in order to continue burrowing into the depths of the Great Pyramid.

Robots began crawling into the Great Pyramid in 1993 in order to explore what was thought to be shafts that allowed the pharaoh’s soul to escape to the afterlife. While two of the four shafts simply led outside, the other two led deeper into the pyramid dead-ending at what’s called “Gantenbrink’s door.”

What lies beyond that will be a mystery until all the proper paperwork clears and the project resumes.

Pretty sure we’re all secretly having nerd-dreams that there’s a Stargate down there somewhere.

[Discovery News]

Russian Company Wants to Put Your Soul into a Creepy Android

Monday, May 21st, 2012

While everyone’s been busy applauding Space X, nerd-herding our likes to Pinterest and getting anxious over Facebook’s IPO, Russia’s decided to just keep right on working on their latest little science fair project… immortality!

With little buzz or fanfare, a group of Russian visionaries has been quietly tinkering away to ensure that the singularity gets here in a timely fashion.

After the above video started getting some play on YouTube, people’s interest began directing them to something that seems like a viral marketing campaign for the latest summer blockbuster about people being embedded into androids. It’s not.

The Russia 2045 Project is planning on eventually taking YOU (call it what you will…your ‘soul’, your ‘bio-data’ or your ‘Midichlorians’…whatever) and embedding it like a YouTube video into one of their androids.

While this all sounds like a science fiction dream-come-true? Watch the video. Russia 2045’s latest model of android looks like someone is puppeteering him just to get him to nod his head.

Ventriloquist dummies are creepy enough. Having your soul trapped inside one for eternity? Creepier.

Best of luck, humanity.

[The Verge]

House Full o’ Fossils: Man Loves Dinosaurs More Than You

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Dinosaur archaeologist. Those words conjure up a lot of school and a highly-educated lab-coat-wearing stereotype for most of us, right? Or at the least monologue-spouting dinosaur-loving cast of Jurassic Park, right?

Then there’s 78 year-old Ray Stanford, Maryland’s ‘Dinoman’ who skipped all that.

While all the dinosaur science people and some of the best dinosaur fossil hunters in the country proclaimed that Maryland wasn’t worth their time and has yielded only minimal finds like a few teeth and a couple of footprints, Ray, a self-taught naturalist, has a house FULL of evidence that somehow everyone missed!

Ray’s home, appropriately called the Stanford Museum, houses one of the most significant collections of fossils on the east coast. Even professionals peruse Standford’s collection in awe.

While most of the collection is fairly typical, if you can forget you’re actually in someone’s house, containing footprints and teeth, there are some incredible finds like a footprint that doesn’t even have a matching fossil record at this point as well as the complete skeleton of a baby dinosaur called a Nodosaur (which has been moved to the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum).

Somebody call John Hammond and let him know about Ray so we can get things started on our new theme park.

[The Washington Post]

Optical Illusion Morphs Gorgeous Celebrities Into Horrifying Trolls

Monday, May 21st, 2012

Take a loot at the cross in the middle of this video. Keep you eyes focused on it.

The faces that grace the covers of magazines and open films to multi-million dollar bonanzas suddenly turn into grossly deformed freaks. You will swear they slip in a few photoshops, but watch the video again without staring at the cross and you’ll realize just how thin the line between beauty and bizarre really is.

This won second place at the Best Illusion of the Year competition.

Read more here about why the illusion works.

[MB Thompson Research]

Jurassic Era Microbes Found Alive, Barely

Friday, May 18th, 2012

Buried Since the Jurassic Era, Ocean Microbes Are Still _Barely Alive_ | Popular Science.jpg

Single cell microbes in the most remote portions of the ocean floor dating back to days when dinosaurs roamed the Earth are indeed alive. But not by much.

Baaaaaaaaaaaaaaarely alive. Which is a scientific term. Each “a” signifying how much closer to complete nonexistence it is.

Yet still, as Dr. Malcolm teaches us… life finds a way.

Røy and colleagues from Denmark and Germany surveyed red clays buried deep in the Pacific Ocean, along the equator and into the North Pacific Gyre current system. From the research R/V Knorr, they drilled core samples 92 feet into the ocean floor, dating to the time of the dinosaurs, and tested the cores with oxygen sensors. They found that organisms live in the deepest parts of these sediments and that they’re using oxygen for respiration — only incredibly slowly. The deeper the sediments, the less food and oxygen is present, and the less oxygen is used up, too. These organisms have not had access to a fresh food supply since their burial, 70 to 86 million years ago.

The finding could gives new insight into life on other planets. Now that we have an idea of just how durable life in on this particular rock we can have some hope that it could survive in a harsh environment elsewhere across the stars.

[Pop Sci]

Researchers Use Google Algorithm to Determine Biomarkers in Cancer

Friday, May 18th, 2012

German researchers have utilized the strategy behind PageRank, the revolutionary Google algorithm which finds relevant search results to determine critical cancerous biomarkers.

The results could facilitate earlier understanding of how aggressive the cancer is and lead to more accurate treatments.

Finding these biomarkers is often difficult and time consuming. Another problem is that markers found in different studies for the same types of cancer almost never overlap.

This problem has been circumvented using the Google strategy, which takes into account the content of a web page and also how these pages are connected via hyperlinks. With this strategy as the model, the authors made use of the fact that proteins in a cell are connected through a network of physical and regulatory interactions; the ‘protein Facebook’ so to speak.

This would equate really aggressive cancers with SEO experts.

Makes sense.

[Science Daily]

Podcast: Payload – Andrew Mayne Stories podcast episode 006

Friday, May 18th, 2012

Thriller writer Andrew Mayne presents free audiobooks and short stories of mystery and adventure.

This episode features Payload, read by special guest Justin Robert Young.

Subscribe on iTunes
Get the RSS feed for the podcast here


How badly did you want to be Iron Man when you were a kid?

Friday, May 18th, 2012

Andrew Mayne and his brother Jamie are Iron Man (men)

I wanted to be Iron Man so bad when I was a kid, my hair smelled like Folger’s Crystals from wearing a coffee can on my head.

Not a joke.

I cut off the end of a tennis ball can, put a dish glove on it and made my own slapdash armor. You have to understand, this wasn’t a costume, in my demented little mind, I WAS MAKING MY OWN ARMOR.

I was obsessed with robots. I’d build little walking things from broken toys and Tupperware containers. When I saw my first Iron Man comic, my head exploded. Dude, you could BE A ROBOT.

In the above photo, my brother and I are dressed up as hybrid Iron Man/C3PO/R2-D2 characters. My dad made the costumes from popcorn tins, life vests, Legos and plenty of silver tape. If you wonder where my creativity comes from; look no further than my dad. He’s always been that awesome.

Before I decided to become a magician, back then I was a little inventor. My goal in life was to go to MIT. Why? Because that’s where Tony Stark went to school.

Life turned out differently. I got into magic, discovered other science heroes like Doctor Who, but I’d be lying if I don’t get a little nostalgic every time I see a coffee can and wonder what could have been…

For more from Andrew Mayne, visit his website: