Vanity Plates: Annoying but Funny

There was a car parked in front of my house the other day sporting a vanity plate that read "IL SUE U" (pictured). And I thought, "wow, that guy must be a jerk." Which got me wondering, who would want a license plate like that -- that would almost force people to make (often negative) assumptions about you without even meeting you? Why would you want to telegraph, via the bumper of your car, that you're litigious and greedy? (Note to guy: please don't sue me.)

Then again, depending on what's on the plate, I suppose it's kind of like wearing a silly tee-shirt; it all depends on what you want to telegraph about yourself. (In the case of our mental_floss shirts, you're telegraphing how cool and smart you are.) So I got my Google on, and found out just how outrageous vanity license plates can be. More than anything, it made me wonder who's approving these things -- some are NSFW!

Nerdy Plates
Normal drives won't know what these plates mean, but other nerds will -- as if they needed a secret language on the road. For instance:
I suppose this Jag is pwned rather than rented.

Nothing like a little Lovecraft Thing Without a Name reference on your bumper. Complete with ironic children's handprints.

That's what I say to cops when they pull me over for speeding.

This South Park reference wouldn't be nearly as funny if this also weren't a disabled tag.

Dirty Stuff
It's amazing to me that this stuff gets by the DMV. But if it's appropriate for our nation's highways, it's appropriate for this blog!

I wonder if that's what the front tag says, too?

Points for creativity.

I could see this on a little sporty car. But a Lincoln in Florida? (What sassy youngster filled out Grandma's DMV form?)

Probably just an Irish family name.

TMI, sir. TMI.

Looks like he got his way. Unless he's talking about another kind of ...

Vanity plates aren't free. What's the point here?

The looks this person must get driving down the street. I love it. [Image courtesy of loudgazelle.]

Always say please and thank-you.

The Real Bay of Pigs: Big Major Cay in the Bahamas

When most people visit the Bahamas, they’re thinking about a vacation filled with sun, sand, and swimming—not swine. But you can get all four of those things if you visit Big Major Cay.

Big Major Cay, also now known as “Pig Island” for obvious reasons, is part of the Exuma Cays in the Bahamas. Exuma includes private islands owned by Johnny Depp, Tyler Perry, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, and David Copperfield. Despite all of the local star power, the real attraction seems to be the family of feral pigs that has established Big Major Cay as their own. It’s hard to say how many are there—some reports say it’s a family of eight, while others say the numbers are up to 40. However big the band of roaming pigs is, none of them are shy: Their chief means of survival seems to be to swim right up to boats and beg for food, which the charmed tourists are happy to provide (although there are guidelines about the best way of feeding the pigs).

No one knows exactly how the pigs got there, but there are plenty of theories. Among them: 1) A nearby resort purposely released them more than a decade ago, hoping to attract tourists. 2) Sailors dropped them off on the island, intending to dine on pork once they were able to dock for a longer of period of time. For one reason or another, the sailors never returned. 3) They’re descendants of domesticated pigs from a nearby island. When residents complained about the original domesticated pigs, their owners solved the problem by dropping them off at Big Major Cay, which was uninhabited. 4) The pigs survived a shipwreck. The ship’s passengers did not.

The purposeful tourist trap theory is probably the least likely—VICE reports that the James Bond movie Thunderball was shot on a neighboring island in the 1960s, and the swimming swine were there then.

Though multiple articles reference how “adorable” the pigs are, don’t be fooled. One captain warns, “They’ll eat anything and everything—including fingers.”

Here they are in action in a video from National Geographic:

Pop Culture
The House From The Money Pit Is For Sale

Looking for star-studded new digs? For a cool $5.9 million, reports, you can own the Long Island country home featured in the 1986 comedy The Money Pit—no renovations required.

For the uninitiated, the film features Tom Hanks and Shelley Long as hapless first-time homeowners who purchase a rundown mansion for cheap. The savings they score end up being paltry compared to the debt they incur while trying to fix up the house.

The Money Pit featured exterior shots of "Northway," an eight-bedroom estate located in the village of Lattingtown in Nassau County, New York. Luckily for potential buyers, its insides are far nicer than the fictional ones portrayed in the movie, thanks in part to extensive renovations performed by the property’s current owners.

Amenities include a giant master suite with a French-style dressing room, eight fireplaces, a "wine wall," and a heated outdoor saltwater pool. Check out some photos below, or view the entire listing here.

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in 1986's “The Money Pit”

The real-life Long Island home featured in 1986's “The Money Pit”



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