NEWS FLASH! Radiant Copenhagen reports a major shift in its waterfront attractions! 

"Soon the famous Little Mermaid will be taken down from the Copenhagen Waterfront, to be restored and prepared for its participation at EXPO 2010 in Shanghai. The Little Mermaid will be replaced by a big Skull replica of the early Homo sapiens in China know as Jing Shan."


Read the full press release on the break!

Long ago in the pre-Internet Age of Mail, publicity agencies would send bizarre objects to the editorial offices of publications in hopes of catching the attention of gullible editors. Most of them were completely useless and would be immediately dropped into the wastebasket (until one of them actually sent us a wastebasket, which I've kept to this day -- who doesn't need a wastebasket?). With the dominance of e-mail (and the decline of marketing budgets), this practice has all but died out. 

But then this came in the mail!

See what's inside after the jump!

For some reason, publicists still think it's a great idea to submit "articles" for publication that are "written" by their clients. Perhaps they envision a world of small-town, weekly papers run by simple folk who just don't know how to fill their empty pages: "The square dance report is running short this week, Ma. What're we gonna put on page 6?" "Well, by gum, let's run that free article on dog-grooming tips from Hartz Mountain!" PR agents seem to believe that readers will see these important articles and then think more fondly of their clients.

Maybe not so much with this article, submitted to us by TMGpr on Madison Avenue: "Top 5 New Year's Resolutions for Your Finances" from Personal Finance Expert Dara Duguay. Ms. Duguay works in Citi's Office of Financial Education. That would be Citigroup, which according to the New York Times, is "one of the biggest recipients of taxpayer money," having taken in $45 billion in government bailout funds in the current financial crisis. The government is also covering 90 percent of the losses on $306 billion in toxic securities after Citigroup absorbed the first $29 billion of losses. 

So, do you really want to take Citi's financial advice regarding your money? Yeahhhh.... well, if you do, it's available after the jump.

Nothing pleases me more than to hear that Yankee innovation is not a thing of the past. Thus, I can't tell you how excited I was when I received this press release declaring that--at long last--a new invention is revolutionizing the way we defend against bathroom odors: 

"'Just a Drop®,' the personal bathroom odor eliminator that is revolutionizing America's regular bathroom routine, is now in use in more than one million homes in North America."

Now, some skeptics may say that this is pure PR hyperbole, but don't let the nay-sayers stop you from thinking this is the greatest personal odor product ever. Read the full press release after the jump to hear the full "Just a Drop®" story.
In the spirit of Halloween, I'll share with you our invitation to attend "Demonology Classes with Exorcist Bishop Long." Even more intriguingly, it arrives courtesy of the Paranormal YellowPages, "a site dedicated to helping people find assistance with their paranormal problems."

Intriguing.... mysterious... spam? The invitation is pasted into the jump for your perusal. Click at your own risk. You apparently have to register before you can enter the Paranormal YellowPages site. 

But if you have any paranormal problems, this could be your only hope!
Getting spam with requests for monetary investment in ridiculous schemes is a long-cherished tradition on the Internet. Who can forget receiving their first e-mail from Ethiopia with its tall tales of millions of dollars seeking a home in somebody's U.S. bank account? Ah, the memories. I do hope someone has been cataloging these creative efforts so they are not lost to history. (Here's one spam blog that has a collection going back to 2007, at least.)

We get voluminous amounts of spam here, but I thought this request for money from last August was particularly brazen in its directness. Max Stephenson wants cash for his pricey NYU tuition. So cough it up:

"I really thought the only well-to-do member of my family would come through.  She talks about two things: how proud she is of me and the worth of her stocks and bonds.  Last week she came to the table: $500 towards my $50,000 a year college education.  What can I say?  A victim of the depression."

Read the rest of his sad tale after the jump. 

Re: lingerie

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Today we have short, simple, and mystifying e-mail. What did Tim see on our website, exactly, that made him think, "At last! I have found the right company that can supply my clients with exotic dancer clothing and lingerie. I must contact them immediately!" 

Or, if Tim has some sort of elaborate con planned here, how did he expect to make money off of our non-existent lingerie supplies? Spam can be so puzzling.

I represent a large network of clients, some of whom are searching online for exotic dancer clothing and lingerie.  My job is to find a reputable company to direct these people to. Based on what I see on your site, I'd like to talk with you.
Please have the owner contact me at their earliest convenience if you can help us. If not, can you please refer me to reputable company who you might recommend? I can be reached at (574) xxx-xxxx all day today.
In a continuation of our last entry on e-mails from foreign lands, I give you this: the Surf Flask. This product of the YONGKANG JINJIAYI METALWORK&PLASTIC FACTORY (located in New Developing Industry Area, YongKang City, ZheJiang Province, China) popped into the MP inbox this morning with the promising subject line of "new excited unnormal flask item." I am a big fan of unnormal items, so you can imagine my excitement upon seeing the actual product itself:

surf flask[1].jpg
I would most certainly buy it if I saw it on the shelves at Target. Read a full description of this joyful flask after the jump.
We often receive e-mails from people overseas--and a large percentage of them, coincidentally enough, are representatives of wealthy estates seeking to deposit large sums of money in banks here in Knoxville. And while we've certainly profited from a number of those transactions, we find certain other foreign e-mails to be even more intriguing. For instance, there's this one:

Why did ?日?? send this to us? Did he or she expect us to be so enticed by the image of this aged Toyota that we'd write back with an offer? 

Perhaps there is a hint in the subject line: 3.5万??人皇冠轿车

Someone please tell us! See more views (and clues?) of this fine vehicle after the jump.

As a free weekly paper in a small southeastern city, Metro Pulse wields an uncommon amount of power over the hearts and minds of Knoxville's citizens. 

Or, at least that's what the world's PR people seem to think based on the mind-boggling amount of promotional crap they send our way. We get it all, from every corner of the Earth: press releases, manifestos, "free articles," alcoholic bribes, press kits, and in-office visits from milk maids. (Yes, the Blue Bell ice cream company sent a live milk maid to our office bearing cartons of free ice cream. She was not harmed. But it raised the question: Who makes milk-maid costumes these days, and why?)

Amid this constant stream of propaganda that we shield you from, there are certain items that float to the top. And this is what we'd like to share with you here at Weird Things People Send Us: the most bizarre things that come across our desks. Just so you know what we're dealing with.

To inaugurate this blog, we have this:

mythical-maidens.jpgThat's right: It's a postcard advertising a company that specializes in photos and DVDs of Amazon women riding horses. No, it's not pornographic, it's just plenty weird. Some of them have swords. 

Out of all the publications in the world, why did they pick us? We've not requested a review copy. Yet.