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23 May 2007 @ 06:35 pm
I thought I was weird, until I found this  
Ok, so...hear me out first.

I'm shopping for a rat skull. This certainly qualifies as weird, but I have my reasons. I want to do a Susan Sto Helit costume, which means I need a Death of Rats. Ergo, a rat skull. And since obtaining one's own is messy and probably frowned upon by PETA, I went shopping online.

The internet is a wonderful invention. In addition to cats with silly captions, and any kind of porn you'd care to imagine (and many kinds I don't care to, thanks very much), it also contains a site called--I'm not making this up--Skulls Unlimited. You might think (as I did, briefly), that this is a site catering to goths and their ilk. No! It's a serious scientific and educational website, dedicated to providing quality skull specimens to...science educators, mainly, I guess. And, now, costumers.

But wait, that's not the weird part.

You see, rat skulls are apparently really small. 3 cm, on average, according to their catalog. Which is kind of small for the articulated shoulder puppet I'm envisioning (but may be unable to actually build--more on that later). So I've been looking at larger rodent skulls that may do the trick, even though they'd be slightly less authentic. Unfortunately, most large rodent skulls are rather pricey. Such as, for example, the 8 cm mountain viscachia skull, priced at $119.00. Or the capybara skull, which, while pretty expensive at $180, at least measures a respectable 26 cm.

No, that's still not the weird part.

The weird thing is what I stumbled across when I got to the listing for the American beaver skull (14 cm, $55-$66, in case you were wondering). There's an additional listing under the beaver for something called a baculum. Unfamiliar with this word, I of course immediately looked up on Wikipedia (the internet, I may have mentioned, is a wonderful invention). Go look it up yourself. I'll wait. Here, I'll even give you a link to make it easier.

That's right, gentle reader, in addition to selling skulls, this inestimable company also peddles beaver boners! In fact, they bear a beautiful bonanza of bony baculums, from raccoons, wolves, chinchillas, skunks, minks; you name it, they've got its bit's bone.

The site also helpfully provides potential uses for your new artifact, should you be moved to purchase one: "The Baculum is sometimes referred to a 'hillbilly or mountain man toothpick' and can be utilized as a coffee stirrer." Excellent! Just what you wanted, to stir your coffee with a wolf wank!

One word of caution: if you should take advantage of this trove of ossified wealth, be aware: "Baculums Pictured Are Not To Scale." Wow, that's a relief.

anaisdjunaanaisdjuna on May 23rd, 2007 11:06 pm (UTC)
*heh heh* She said baculum :-P
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 06:12 pm (UTC)
That's about the tone of this whole post, admittedly. ;)
Morte, Margret Elwald, Kristina: badideahrmortcia on May 23rd, 2007 11:13 pm (UTC)
yes, this is strange but... um... how does that make you not weird? 8)

ya know..i need a smartass icon
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:15 pm (UTC)
It makes me less weird. :P

And you are, all by yourself, a smartass icon. ;)
(Deleted comment)
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:02 pm (UTC)
Wow...That's amazing. No matter how weird the internet gets, somehow the Bay Area is always weirder. It's like a geographical web ring!
Kimkgkofmel on May 23rd, 2007 11:15 pm (UTC)
Have you considered a possum? Don't know the going price. They look like a rat, only bigger. Much loved in Houston as they displace rats. Either compete for the same niche, or eat them, don't know for sure.

So a possum literally WOULD be the death-of-rats
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:03 pm (UTC)
ROFL! Worth checking into, surely. :D
kessleckesslec on May 23rd, 2007 11:23 pm (UTC)
A rat skull?!? Okay, it's official: your mother thinks you're weird.
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:04 pm (UTC)
Runs in the family. ;P
kessleckesslec on May 25th, 2007 12:25 am (UTC)
Not on my side. On my side of the family we consider ourselves eccentric.
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 25th, 2007 07:52 pm (UTC)
*I'm* on your side of the family, and *I* consider you weird. So there. ;)
Kitanzi: weird Earth  -Boogiejackkitanzi on May 24th, 2007 12:14 am (UTC)
What to get for the person who has everything...
Rob: qu'est-ce que c'est? - 9docautographedcat on May 24th, 2007 12:14 am (UTC)
At one time I had a link to a site which sold authentic replica animal penis dildos.

The Internet isn't merely stranger than you imagine. It's stranger than you can imagine.
Laura Gallaghercelticdragonfly on May 24th, 2007 05:28 am (UTC)
Possibly the weird part will be knowing that I've already been to that site, or one very much like it. But then, you knew my major, right?
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:13 pm (UTC)
The weird part is the number of people commenting on this post who a) know what a baculum is already and b) say, "no no, that's not weird--this is weird!"
The Gecko of Destiny!elgecko on May 24th, 2007 07:18 am (UTC)
Weirdness contest, Berkeley vs. The Internet, 2 out of 3 falls, 10 round limit.

There's actually a place called The Bone Room in the north end of Berkeley, and they sell all manner of natural specimens and such, including bones! I think they're open on the weekends.
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 24th, 2007 04:14 pm (UTC)
I sense a shopping trip in the works...
filkferengifilkferengi on May 26th, 2007 09:33 pm (UTC)
That looks like the plural should be bacula--just don't tell Scott! ;)
joyeuse13joyeuse13 on May 27th, 2007 02:47 am (UTC)
That was my thought as well. But the site said "baculums," and who am I to argue with Skulls Unlimited?
filkferengifilkferengi on May 27th, 2007 03:34 am (UTC)
Yeah, but the other makes a much funnier story. ;)