Hoarding is not collection development

The Unexplained and Just Plain Crazy

Unexplained, aliens, ghosts, weird stuff, and of course the category defying label of WTF.

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Serial Killer Training Manual

The Beginner’s Guide to Animal Autopsy

Submitter: This book had been sitting in our reference section for I don’t know how long. A while ago we weeded those books for space and the cover just made me flinch. Poor Teddy, sacrificed in the name of science! As you can see in the chapter heading, the cutaways shown there aren’t even real interiors, nor are these animals shown later with proper guts, like the ducky on p. 32-33. (The fish image on the cover page is also the image used for Chapter 3.) I’m sure there are much better resources for dissection available online. After this, it’s going to our Friends.

Holly: Why would this be put in the reference section? As Submitter pointed out, the book doesn’t even portray real animal organs. It’s sort of a serial killer training manual for children. Creepy!

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Sense Relaxation: Blow Your Mind

Submitter: I work in a small academic library, and I weeded [this] on my first pass through our medical collection. Self-described as “a book of experiments in being alive,” the book invites readers to get in touch with their senses by tapping, and then slapping their bodies all over… and that’s just for starters. I know the 60′s happened, but still, this is one of the most bizarre library books I’ve ever encountered. I didn’t include any scans of the many photos of topless women or naked couples performing these sense experiments… maybe that’s how this book stayed in the collection until the 2010s?

Holly: What the… I’m speechless.  I particularly do not understand the second picture below.  Look in the top, left corner of the picture.  (Sorry about that…)

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Remember Me?

How to Remember Names : The proven, easy, immediate method for remembering names, numbers, lists… and where you put your glasses

Submitter: I found this book while weeding in my public library’s psychology section. It seemed so innocuous at first. I pulled it off my cart and thought the cover was a bit dated (for good reason, it had apparently been hanging out at our branch for over 20 years!), but that it had a topic that would appeal to lots of patrons. Then, I opened it up… and couldn’t decide whether it was laughable or horrific. The unfortunately-named Dr. Crook’s main memory device is to pair a person’s face and name together with a concrete image. So, for example, if you meet someone new named Tony, you immediately picture his face on a Tony Award. This is such an odd image that you’re supposed to have no trouble picturing it and remembering Tony’s name the next time you bump into him. That all sounds reasonable enough… until the author illustrates just what he means on the next pages. For once, big hair isn’t the scariest thing going on in these photos. (Let me just say, I’m glad my name isn’t Helen.) This is probably a useful technique, but there are lots of books on improving memory out there. It didn’t make it back onto our shelves.

Holly: Dr. Crook!  Ha ha ha!!  Of course, my 12-year-old boy brain went straight to “what if their name is Dick?” I’m not drawing THAT on the poor kid’s face in the yearbook!  Hey, people, I know LOTS of people legitimately named Dick!

Shame on me.

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