Quirky Stuff

Strange and remarkable sites on the Web


NB I don't seem to be actively updating this page at the moment, apart from eliminating dead links or correcting existing ones where site has moved, although there is still weird and wonderful stuff out there.

The Icelandic Phallological Museum, Reykjavik:
phallic specimens belonging to all the various types of mammal found in a single country (though not, yet, homo sapiens). Includes some images. Available in several languages.

A Constructed Languages Library:
From the serious idealistic stuff like Volapuk, Esperanto and Basic English, and thought-experiments like Laadan, to Barsoomian, Klingon, and Vulcan

Dead Media Project:
a virtual archive/museum of obsolete methods of recording, storing and disseminating information, from chips on bone to superceded computer chips.

Theremin World:
everything you might ever have wanted to know about the theremin, assuming you knew what a theremin was. Includes audio clips.
Also on theremins, Theremin Info

Geoffrey Chaucer
audio clips from The Canterbury Tales etc - in Middle English

All You Ever Wanted To Know About Hedgehogs! [Jan 2011, site appears to be defunct]
The British Hedgehog Preservation Society

English as She is Spoke
'This 1883 book is without question the worst phrasebook ever written. The writer, Pedro Carolino, who was Portuguese, did not particularly speak English, nor did he have a Portuguese-English dictionary available. Instead, he worked with a French-English phrasebook and a Portuguese-French dictionary.'

Journal of Mundane Behavior
'a new [on-line] scholarly journal devoted to the study of the "unmarked" -- those aspects of our everyday lives that typically go unnoticed by us, both as academics and as everyday individuals'. [This site, alas, appears to have gone, Jan 2011]

The University of Bums on Seats (formerly Peckham Polytechnic)

Urban Legends Reference Pages
including canards currently circulating on the internet.

Rhetorical figures: alphabetical listing (from Alliteration to Zeugma, with examples)

The Museum of Questionable Medical Devices,
or the Quackery Hall of Fame. Possibly some slight bias, given that much of the material came from bodies like the American Medical Association... and very much North American in its coverage, but includes a lot of devices which had much wider circulation. Now at the Science Museum of Minnesota.

Dave's Web of Lies:
'Dave's Web of Lies employs a trained team of specialised researchers to trawl the world's information nets seeking out falsehoods. The fruits of their labours are presented to you here. We constantly update this site with the latest lies for you to consume, safe in the knowledge that what you read is not true'.

HotAIR:
the website of the Annals of Improbable Research, including the IgNobel Prizes 'for achievements that cannot or should not be reproduced'

The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest:
'It was a dark and stormy night' - opening paragraphs that would lead the reader to put down the book in a hurry and refrain from reading on.

The Institute of Official Cheer:
'where old pop culture is subjected to our patented Re-Ironization Process, and converted into chipper, spiffy, feather-light postmodern commentary on commercial culture'. Includes 'The Gallery of Regrettable Food' and the 'Orphanage of Cast-Off Mascots'.

The Gallery Of "Misused" Quotation Marks

Boom! Power! Watch the Fords Go By
a dramatic poem about the Ford Motor Company 1903-1947, by Bob Arnebeck

Museum of Depressionist Art

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Last updated 23 September 2012, by Lesley Hall

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