In This Week’s Show, episode 205, the doctors at WHO bend space and time to stop Nazi air purifiers from cleaning China’s fog of death.
Now, grab a beer and help us test the god hypothesis — because, while Mahuika (the Maorian fire goddess and ancestor of Maui) hasn’t struck us down yet, we are trying her patience!
Shea’s Life Lesson
This week I learned that you have to be careful what you wear every day because of you die that’s your ghost clothes now.
Jenn’s Actual Lesson
Did you know, and you would if you have seen Moana, that Maui often assumed the form of a hawk? Per Maorian mythology, the hawk, kahu, was a god of fire, and a child of Mahuika.
But before we get to all that, let’s have a beer!
This Week’s Beer
Meadowlark – Ole Gus
Scotch-style Ale “Wee Heavy Rye Ale”
- BA Link: http://bit.ly/2ycNXXj
- BA Rating: 3.9/5
- Style: Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy
- ABV: 7%
- Aaron: 3
- Jenn: 2
- Shea: 3
- Steve: 5
This Week’s Show
Round Table Discussion
New Patreon Evan!
iTunes Update from David the Ox:
Still the best
by David the Oxford on Oct 04, 2018
Five stars to the podcast that you wish were your next door neighbors. Funny and talented people who like beer and keeping it real.
Listen, drink, laugh, and enjoy
by Odysseus2k7 on Oct 05, 2018
I have been a patron of this podcast for over a year and its been worth it. I love the chemistry of the hosts. Jenn is my spirit animal!
FreeThinker is a native of sammich land, so for those interested 215 is apparently the area code for Philly. The more you know…
Another mystery is solved! Our fabulous etched and personalized mugs were brought to us by Duff! Just Duff, he’s like Cher and Fabio… and Duff! (beer)
Thanks for the feedback Mel-burn Steve, Jenn promises to do some headlines but as she said in the email, 3-ish minutes a pop is just about all we’re good for.
Steve – Hot Piss is the Best Piss
I have a scenario for you. You are on your way to get drug tested, but you’re running a bit late and the fresh pee you’re carrying isn’t warm enough to get you through the test. What do you do? Put in under your arm? Fuck that, too slow. You’re in a hurry so you obviously stop into the local gas station that’s on the way and warm up your urine in the microwave. Does this sound silly? Well, Parul Patel, owner of “On the Fly” convenience store in Jacksonville, FL was facing this exact issue on a daily basis. Due to a continuous issue of, non-customers no less, just using his microwave to warm up piss, he had to put up signs against the practice. Patel said, “We try to stop these kinds of people. They become aggressive with us.” LabCorp, the piss test company down the street, declined to comment.
Damnit. It’s. Air.
Living in the mountains I’ve always had a bit of a chuckle at the cans of air in checkout lines here. Silly lowlanders, you have too much air, it makes your minds sick…
Sick enough to buy New Zealand’s air though? Unlike the cheap, oxygen-rich, altitude “remedies” this will cost you more than a few bucks… 98 more than a few actually. And they won’t help you with anything except smelling an air compressor from the picturesque mountains of almost-Australia. Four cans of the ‘Pure Fresh New Zealand Air’ were seen on display with a price tag of $98.99 at a duty-free shop at Auckland International Airport. The bottles – which come with breathing masks attached – are sold around the world by a company called Kiwiana for 34.50… for a 5-liter can. ‘New Zealand’s unique position in the Southern Ocean means Kiwiana Air has crossed no major landmass before flowing over the pristine Southern Alps of New Zealand and into this can,’ a message on the back of the product reads. According to the Kiwiana website, the company harvests the air ‘above the snow line’ on New Zealand’s South Island.
‘High in the Southern Alps of New Zealand above the snow line and hundreds of kilometers away from civilization or any human activity is where the air in your can has come from,’ the website states.
‘This is the purest air you will ever breath (sic)
And if that interests you, I’ve got cans if dehydrated water for as low as 19.99$ – just add some h20 and you’re set!
The king of Britons has been found.
… At Patreon.com/w4w where this story is ready to knight you!
Excalibur has chosen a new heir and the lady in the lake now wields the legendary sword. At least I’m pretty sure.
Saga Vanecek went paddling in a southern Swedish lake. And in the shallow waters, reduced by a long heat wave, she came across something astonishing.
She thought it was a stick, she told the news and she was going to skim it over the water. But when she fished it out, it was a sword — about 33 inches long, black-brown with age and rust.
According to a Facebook post by her father, Andy Vanecek, she “lifted it high above her head, and shouted, “ ‘DADDY! I FOUND A SWORD!’
The discovery was made in July this summer but the local museum asked that they keep the find a secret until they had time to check the lake for other artifacts. The local Jonkoping county museum confirmed that it dated to the 5th or 6th century, before the time of the Vikings.
How she kept the secret this long is quite impressive and now I suppose she can finally wear the sword at her belt and rightfully claim her throne.
Steve – Quackery I Tell You
I feel like we here at Waiting4Wrath don’t spend enough time talking about medical quackery. It is a topic that I personally find very interesting in that, otherwise seemingly normal, intelligent people can believe in the stupidest, least researched, most redonkulous claims. Well, here’s another example. Stanford educated Jesse Karmazin (med school graduate without a license to practice medicine) runs a couple of clinics called Ambrosia in San Francisco and Tampa where for $8000 (yep, 8 Grand), they will transfuse your old ass with the blood plasma of a young person. In what they call a “study” (even though there are no research protocols, controls, or any other study-like qualities), Ambrosia takes the blood from multiple blood banks and multiple donors, separated then combined, then transfuse the “young” blood 1.5 liters at a time, into the recipients over two days. Naturally, there’s no real research other than a couple of potentially promising mouse studies, that this does anything other than separate the rich from their money.
Seriously. I shouldn’t need to keep saying this.
Let’s just cut to the chase. This story is from Thailand. It’s about weird sex.
Or, at least one assumes it is, because what other kind of sex do you rent a themed love hotel for right?
Especially when that room is Hitler themed. Yeah…
Again. For what feels like the 200th time, you literally never need more Hitler.
An anonymous tourist said “I don’t think there is any malice behind the decor but it shows a lack of education and historical sensitivity.”yeah, ya think?
Prices to use the room start at just 410 baht ($12.61) for two people for three hours. Each additional hour is 150 baht ($4.61) and each extra guest is 100 baht ($3.08.)
Each room has a drive-in carport which can be covered with a curtain, so guests never have to be seen publicly when they visit the sex hotel. Which, let’s face it, if you’re renting the “Communist” room, you probably want anonymity. Nong Kung, a receptionist at the hotel, said: “The Communism room is popular.”
“It’s one of our special rooms. People often call to book this room. It has been used by groups, but the cost is more for extra people.”
So. Yeah. Fucking nazi fucking room.
I don’t want to live on this planet anymore…
Medicine Doesn’t Get a Prefix…
We talked previously about WHO’s homeopathy program. A nightmare fueled “health” scheme that saw people ‘treating’ HIV, malaria, and TB with drops of shaken water. In 2009 there was a significant pushback and WHO stopped recommending these treatments. They didn’t entirely stop using them though. It amounted to little more than de-escalation. More recently, however, WHO has begun another – perhaps even shitter – course of treatments. Traditional Chinese Medicine.
For those unfamiliar with TCM, it’s mostly from China, based on tradition, and not at all medicine.
Steven Salzbery for Forbes wrote this week about a recently released paper in Nature, a significant journal for well… natural stuff. In the paper, David Cyranoski does his best to present both sides of the story. One being that sick people need medicine, and the other being fuck them. The article is clearly not in favor of TCM, but in an effort to encourage discourse, like some other Science Guy we know, David was entirely too charitable with the woo. Far too late in the article David refutes things like “triple energizer meridian” syndrome, which is, as you might guess, not a thing. He points out in passing that the scientific consensus is that meridians aren’t even real. Presumably citing a study of shit that should be obvious.
He talks a lot about “Western Medicine” as if it were merely another field. @astrelaps, a Ph.D. student in biology, sums it up nice:
“What a weak, equivocal article from the world’s preeminent scientific journal. “For those steeped in Western medicine…” is like writing ‘for those steeped in climate science’ or ‘for those steeped evolutionary biology’ when reporting on climate change denial or creationism”
So why then? Well, it likely has something to do with China’s aggressive marketing of traditional medicine. Both for international influence peddling, but also because the woo-medical industry is evaluated at 50 billion $ a year globally. And those are ‘real’ dollars btw.
But what does it mean? Well, most of it is to do with dicks. For example, the slaughter of the last remaining African rhinos should probably bother you. And if it doesn’t I challenge you to click the links and see the pictures of dehorned rhinos poached to make fake-viagra. But we know about that one right? Ok, black bears. They’re farmed the way we farm chickens – which is to say terribly and in the most inhumane ways imaginable. They’re barely able to move, with tubes in their abdomens to collect bile. You know, to make you more virile and stuff. Or the fact that we’re almost out of Asian tigers because we all know their various body parts will give you superpowers.
All of those items are nightmare scenarios, and they won’t help anyone with anything… unless what you need help with is cashing in on endangered species.
There are, of course, detractors who insist this isn’t all fraudulent horsehit. Many point to artemisinin or taxol, the latter of which is discussed in detail on a recent episode of Skeptics with a K by Dr. Alice, who is a cancer researcher and infinitely more qualified than I to explain how it fucks up cancer. The nutshell, art-student understood version is that it works well on some tumors but is extremely dependent on the type and the person, and with regard to the person, reactions if incorrectly taken can be fatal. The former, artemisinin, is a plant extract derived from Artimisia annua, an herb that was traditionally used in China to treat malaria. A Chinese researcher won the Nobel peace prize for its discovery and use as a treatment for Malaria. Of course, even in these examples, or more common ones like aspirin, it should be noted that we’re talking about chemically modified extracts here, not just chewing some leaves to cure what ails you.
Support for TCM grew during the tenure of former WHO director Margaret Chan, who ran the WHO until 2017 and who had close ties to China. When Nature tried to contact Dr. Chan, the WHO responded that Chan “is not answering questions on matters related to the WHO.”
Final “fun” fact. This week was designated Naturopathic Medicine Week, according to a 2013 Senate resolution sponsored by Sen. Barbara Mikulski and passed by the Senate with unanimous consent. What her wiki page and most other outlets won’t tell you is that in presenting the woo-woo motion, she used arguments from, and even partially quoted, Chairman Mao. Mao initially encouraged TCM out of necessity, in the 1950’s he had too many sick people and not enough actual medicine, so he supported TCM publicly, while privately acknowledging its uselessness, to placate the troubled nation. Barb was replaced as Maryland’s Senator in the last election.
WHO’s page on T&CM: http://bit.ly/2OmTTI4
Urban Legends are LEGENDSCARY.
As I threatened last week, I’m back with a couple of freaky urban legends, that actually have some basis in reality. Hopefully, Shea brought his teddy bear bc I’m tryin’ to bring the creepy.
SideNote: I want to give a big thanks to listener Jessie for suggesting the story of the Jersey Devil (no, not Snooki). It didn’t work out in this particular segment, but if I do a cryptid segment this month, he’s on there!
First off, just a quick rundown of the ‘I thought everyone had heard of this one’ story that Aaron apparently…hadn’t, from last week.
Scene: Lover’s Lane after dark, with smooching young couple parked in a lone car. Suddenly their tryst is interrupted by a news bulletin over the radio (this is the dark time before BlueTooth, kids). The alert warns listeners of an escaped murderous maniac from prison/an institution, he’s heading towards the town where the smoochers are parked and, oh yeah, he has a hook hand.
The now-frightened girl begs the boy to take her home, which he does reluctantly (cuz sexy time), but it’s a good thing. Because as he comes around the car to open the door for her at her house (ye olde times, remember), ON THE HANDLE OF THE DOOR HANGS A HOOK!)
Of course, this is a morality tale to warn smooching teenagers of the dangers of sex, but it wasn’t exactly an entirely fictional scenario. For ten weeks in 1946, a masked creeper attacked 3 different parked couples, with the first couple being the only
survivors. The killings have become known as the Texarkana Moonlight Murders, and the killer (called the Phantom) was never caught. In fact, he is sometimes linked to the much more famous and also unknown serial murderer, the Zodiac killer. He was active a few decades later, sometimes wore a creepy sack-mask, and also enjoyed attacking and murdering young couples. And pretty much anyone, really.
Yeah, he was probably Ted Cruz.
So who hasn’t heard of the story of the real dead body in the haunted fun house? When a cheap carnival show has a prop or two that looks just a little too real? Well, in addition to the time Steven Spielberg saved money filming Poltergeist by using real skeletons in a few scenes (without telling the cast), an amusement park in Long Beach, CA also had show business to thank for uncovering how…authentic, one of their Fun House corpses actually was.
During a 1976 filming of the 6 Million Dollar man in the amusement park, a set engineer was attempting to move the fun house’s “hanging man” when he accidentally knocked off the dummy’s arm, only to discover actual human bones sticking out from the stumps.
But the story doesn’t end there. After a little grave digging (heh heh), the identity of the now-mummified body was soon discovered. It was the remains of a turn of the century Oklahoma train robber named Elmer McCurdy!
Now, Elmer was neither a famous nor particularly good outlaw. On October 4, 1911, after a string of spectacular failures, he gave the train robbery one more shot. He had learned that a $400,000 payment to the Osage Indian tribe was heading his way. True to form, Elmer and his buddies stopped the wrong train. They got only $46 in cash, two jugs of whiskey and the conductor’s watch. Sadly, he didn’t even have a chance to enjoy his spoils: he announced to the pursuing posse he wouldn’t be taken alive…and well, he was killed in the ensuing shootout.
But happily, for creepy story fans, his tale was just beginning. He landed at a funeral parlor in Pawhuska, OK, where the mortician pumped his body full of arsenic, a common practice for embalming when it was unknown how long it took for a body to be claimed. Well, sadly, no one did arrive to take Elmer home, but the mortician was an enterprising fellow. He felt he had done such a bang up job on the train robber he put him on exhibit, charging a nickel per view. Thus his REAL career took off, as he remained there for the next five years.
In 1916, he made it to the big times when his body was claimed by a representative of the Great Patterson Shows who was unscrupulously posing as a relative interested in giving Elmer a proper burial. Instead, Elmer was put on an exhibition as the ‘Oklahoma Outlaw’.
From that first display, Elmer McCurdy began a sixty-year odyssey in exhibition, being passed from show to show and carnival to carnival. Once, he was even forfeited as security for a $500 loan and he has even displayed a theatre lobby during showings of the 1933 film Narcotic. For much of the 30’s and 40’s McCurdy was displayed by former police officer Louis Sonney in his ‘Museum of Crime’. Perhaps due to all the shuffling and his wanderings folks forgot that McCurdy was a real mummy and not some macabre prop. By the 60’s, all memory of his true nature was forgotten and McCurdy was sold as a ‘mannequin’ to a wax museum in 1971. Sometime between ‘71 and ‘76 he was purchased by the Nu-Pike Amusement Park, when he was discovered by Hollywood after losing his arm on the set of the TV show (but they can build him better, stronger, faster…).
When medical examiner Thomas Noguchi opened the mummy’s mouth for other clues, he was surprised to find a 1924 penny and a ticket from Sonney Amusement’s Museum of Crime in Los Angeles. That ticket and archived newspaper accounts helped police and researchers identify the body as that of Elmer McCurdy.
Following a huge amount of press and much fanfare, in April 1977 the well-traveled Elmer McCurdy was finally laid to final rest in Summit View Cemetery in Guthrie, Oklahoma. To ensure that the now famous corpse would not make its way back to the entertainment world, the state medical examiner ordered two cubic yards of cement poured over the coffin before the grave was closed.
Elmer has been resting happily, or at least stationary, ever since.
Next Week’s Beer
Long shadow India pale ale
- BA Link: http://bit.ly/2A6QhkP
- BA Rating: 4.01/5
- Style: American IPA
- ABV: 7.1%
Faith In Humanity Restored
This comes from Big Gay Jim! It’s a couple of months old but that means I get to do an insta-follow up! If you want to say thanks to Jim for all he does, on-air and off, visit WyoAIDS.org and make a tax-deductible donation to help people living with HIV/AIDS!
As part of a social impact initiative, Sephora launched a complimentary makeup and skin care class for members of the trans community. The classes were geared toward transgender or non-binary folks and were led by transgender Sephora Beauty Advisors who have intimate knowledge of the beauty challenges trans people face. Sessions run 90 minutes and include customized personal skin care regimens and product recommendations. The course covered application techniques, color and texture correction, and foundation matching.
As this is an in-the-past story, there’s one element that is now especially noteworthy; for those who couldn’t attend the tutorials were made available on Sephora’s YouTube channel and they’re worth a look, link in the show notes: http://bit.ly/2OhAeJD
In a press release sent to HelloGiggles, Corrie Conrad, the Head of Social Impact and Sustainability for Sephora, said:
“Sephora Stands is dedicated to supporting diversity and inclusion in all of its social impact programming. We stand with all members of the LGBTQA community and are committed to providing these individuals with the tools they want to feel confident and beautiful every single day. At Sephora, we believe beauty is yours to define, and ours to celebrate. We are honored to be a beacon of support and part of each beauty journey through our new class offering.”
It sounds like it was a success too, from Them.us:
“We learned a lot of basics — a lot of things we need to know in order to take the rest of the free lessons Sephora offers, like the contour and highlight class. We started our class with a focus on skincare, using cleansers and exfoliating wipes. It felt very much like a sleepover, with a dozen trans girls of different ages all moisturizing and laughing together. From there we learned how to build the base of our makeup. We applied foundation and concealer and added some color to our cheeks and lips. The whole thing felt very natural and normal. I was a little afraid the class might be pandering or condescending, but it wasn’t. It was just some women teaching other women how to do makeup and having fun together.”
One thing that was mentioned was a lack of emphasis on covering up 5-o’clock shadows, which could be a literal life-saver. I did a bit of searching but didn’t find anything I would consider a worthwhile resource – but then, as a guy who grows his jawline, it’s not something I’m practiced at looking for. If anyone has any resources or tips send them to the show – anonymously is fine – and we’ll share them out. Likewise, if you’re alone, lost, or feeling like you need a community, check out the Gaytheist Manifesto with Callie Wright. We’ve talked about her before – she was our first guest actually – but the community Callie has built is fantastic, welcoming, and judgment-free.
Bonus Cat Video
Aquaman might actually not suck entirely: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaWnLiffxJ4
But this is 100% how we all die: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=4&v=LikxFZZO2sk
Join The Discussion
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