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This is What 10,500,000 Firecrackers Looks Like

This is the time of year when I trot out the time-honored tradition of complaining about my neighbors' late-night disposal of leftover fireworks. The neighborhood dogs howl along with me, forming our own little complaint choir. But there is a level of awesomeness achievable by a fireworks display, even one using only firecrackers, that's rarely imagined in my neighborhood.

In 2006, in Appleton, Wisconsin, a fireworks convention was host to a completely insane feat of firecracker combustion -- over 10 million firecrackers were set off in one string. According to the YouTube post this is a record for: "the most firecrackers lit in one megastring (approx. 10,500,000) and the most firecrackers in one superstring (it is the vertical string of crackers)." Big fireworks go boom.

If this weren't so festive, it'd be like a frickin' war or something.

See also: Fireworks Around the World; The Names of 10 Fireworks Effects; and Yay! 4th of July Fireworks 2011!

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Weird
Watch Plastic Skeletons Being Made in a 1960s Factory
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The making of human teaching skeletons used to be a grisly affair, involving the manipulation of fresh—or not-so-fresh—corpses. But as this video from British Pathé shows, by the 1960s it was a relatively benign craft involving molded plastic and high temperatures, not meat cleavers and maggots.

The video, accented by groan-worthy puns and jaunty music, goes inside a factory in Surrey that produces plastic skeletons, brains, and other organs for use in hospitals and medical schools. The sterile surroundings marked a shift in skeleton production; as the video notes, teaching skeletons had long come from the Middle East, until countries started clamping down on exporting human remains. Before that, human skeletons in Britain and the United States were often produced with a little help from grave-robbers, known as the Resurrection Men. After being dissected in anatomical classes at medical schools, the stolen corpses were often de-fleshed and transformed into objects for study. The theft of these purloined bodies, by the way, started several of America's first riots. Far better they be made out of plastic.

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Weird
The Origins of 25 Monsters, Ghosts, and Spooky Things
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Though dressing up as an angel is acceptable, it’s ghouls and goblins that truly capture our imaginations during the Halloween season. As lit jack-o’-lanterns beckon and monsters lurk in the shadows, we explore the origins of 25 frightful things that go bump—or boo—in the night.

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