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11 Insane Movie Props You Can Buy on eBay

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By Scott Meslow

If you think of eBay at all, you probably think of it as a kind of digital flea market—a place for buyers to put their old records and collectible dolls and Pez dispensers where the few people who want them can easily find them.

But there's another side to eBay: A wonderfully weird side where hardcore movie fans can acquire props, both iconic and banal, that have been culled from a wide variety of film sets. What buried treasures can be found on the auction site? A guide:

1. Arnold Schwarzenegger prop head from Total Recall — $100

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How would you like to have a terrifying, rubbery, inexplicably aged Arnold Schwarzenegger head gracing your coffee table? This prop from 1990's Total Recall—which the seller says was used in one of the Mars sets—also comes with an autograph from Schwarzenegger. Unlike many of the props available on eBay, the Total Recall head has no minimum bid. It currently sits at a staggeringly low $100—so get your bids in before Valentine's Day!

2. Poker chips from Ocean's Eleven — $499.95

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Ocean's Eleven is less about gambling and more about robbery—but you can't knock over three of Las Vegas' biggest casinos without sending a few poker chips flying. These ones were scattered across the floor of the Bellagio during the grand heist at the movie's climax, so they probably didn't see any actual play — but there's always the chance George Clooney stepped on one or something.

3. Oar from Titanic — $1,100

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There aren't too many movie props that will actually be useful in a real-world situation, but if you ever end up on a sinking ship, you might want to hold onto this oar from Titanic. The seller says this oar was heroically "recovered from the water of the huge tank" where the movie was filmed, so it's probably the closest thing you'll find to an actual relic from the Titanic anytime soon.

4. T-1000 shirt from Terminator 2: Judgment Day — $2,467.20

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Who wouldn't want to dress up like hunky, sleeveless fake cop Robert Patrick? This shirt fromTerminator 2: Judgment Day, which was used in the scene when the T-1000 turns his arms into hooks and grabs onto the dashboard of a car, also comes with two liquid metal bullet hits, so your absurdly out-of-date Halloween costume can be even more authentic.

5. Jeff Goldblum's feet from The Fly — $4,125.75

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If the rubber Schwarzenegger head wasn't disturbing enough for you, here's something that's both much more expensive and much grosser: The misshapen, sore-covered prosthetic feet Jeff Goldblum wore for 1986's The Fly. The seller gleefully describes the prop from the horror movie as "the ultimate Christmas present for a fan" — or, perhaps, for the parent who wants something even worse than coal to give their misbehaving kid.

6. Saw from Saw — $7,000

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Yet another iconic/disturbing prop for the horror fan in your life. This saw from the horror movie of the same name was used by the movie's protagonist when he failed to cut through his own chains. Goes great with Jeff Goldbum's diseased feet!

7. General Katana's Sword from Highlander II: The Quickening — $9,500

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Any immortals looking to collect their quickening in style have a new, pricey possibility: The sword used by Michael Ironside in the legendarily awful sequel to Highlander. The seller is quick to acknowledge that the movie itself was "crap," but swears that the sword "is the most powerful ever made. Period."

8. Peter Pan costume from Hook — $16,503

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This "flying" costume was worn by Robin Williams in Steven Spielberg's Hook. (Alas, his weird little sword is not included.) "Hook was one of the biggest movies ever to be made in Hollywood," says the apparently delusional seller. But hyperbolic claims about Hook aside: If you're a huge Robin Williams fan, owning his Peter Pan tights is probably as up close and personal as you're going to get.

9. Charlie Bucket's Scrumdidilyumptious Wonka Bar from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory — $16,503

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This prop, from 1971's Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, is the oldest on this list by a considerable margin — so even if this was real chocolate, you probably wouldn't want to eat it. Alas, the seller reveals that this allegedly scrumdidilyumptious Wonka bar is actually a "heavy stock paper wrapper surrounding a light tissue paper-filled center." My entire childhood was a lie.

10. 1970 Chevrolet Nova from Death Proof — $39,900

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Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof, which made up one half of 2006's double feature Grindhouse, wasn't exactly his most successful movie — but apart from a severed ear or a Hattori Hanzo sword, it's hard to imagine a cooler prop from his oeuvre than the 1970 Chevrolet Nova driven by Stuntman Mike. According to the seller, this is one of two surviving Novas from the film's production. Sure, the price isn't exactly something to sneeze at—but hey, free shipping!

11. Velociraptor cage from Jurassic Park — $99,900.10

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This is it—the greatest prop ever sold on an auction website. For just under $100,000, you can own the massive velociraptor crate from the opening scene of 1993's Jurassic Park—and it comes with an actual full-sized velociraptor model inside it. If you have a hundred grand to spare (and a truck to lug your new dinosaur around the greater Los Angeles area), you have absolutely no excuse not to buy this clever girl.

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15 Confusing Plant and Animal Misnomers
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People have always given names to the plants and animals around us. But as our study of the natural world has developed, we've realized that many of these names are wildly inaccurate. In fact, they often have less to say about nature than about the people who did the naming. Here’s a batch of these befuddling names.

1. COMMON NIGHTHAWK

There are two problems with this bird’s name. First, the common nighthawk doesn’t fly at night—it’s active at dawn and dusk. Second, it’s not a hawk. Native to North and South America, it belongs to a group of birds with an even stranger name: Goatsuckers. People used to think that these birds flew into barns at night and drank from the teats of goats. (In fact, they eat insects.)

2. IRISH MOSS

It’s not a moss—it’s a red alga that lives along the rocky shores of the northern Atlantic Ocean. Irish moss and other red algae give us carrageenan, a cheap food thickener that you may have eaten in gummy candies, soy milk, ice cream, veggie hot dogs, and more.

3. FISHER-CAT

Native to North America, the fisher-cat isn’t a cat at all: It’s a cousin of the weasel. It also doesn’t fish. Nobody’s sure where the fisher cat’s name came from. One possibility is that early naturalists confused it with the sea mink, a similar-looking creature that was an expert fisher. But the fisher-cat prefers to eat land animals. In fact, it’s one of the few creatures that can tackle a porcupine.

4. AMERICAN BLUE-EYED GRASS

American blue-eyed grass doesn’t have eyes (which is good, because that would be super creepy). Its blue “eyes” are flowers that peek up at you from a meadow. It’s also not a grass—it’s a member of the iris family.

5. MUDPUPPY

The mudpuppy isn’t a cute, fluffy puppy that scampered into some mud. It’s a big, mucus-covered salamander that spends all of its life underwater. (It’s still adorable, though.) The mudpuppy isn’t the only aquatic salamander with a weird name—there are many more, including the greater siren, the Alabama waterdog, and the world’s most metal amphibian, the hellbender.

6. WINGED DRAGONFISH

This weird creature has other fantastic and inaccurate names: brick seamoth, long-tailed dragonfish, and more. It’s really just a cool-looking fish. Found in the waters off of Asia, it has wing-like fins, and spends its time on the muddy seafloor.

7. NAVAL SHIPWORM

The naval shipworm is not a worm. It’s something much, much weirder: a kind of clam with a long, wormlike body that doesn’t fit in its tiny shell. It uses this modified shell to dig into wood, which it eats. The naval shipworm, and other shipworms, burrow through all sorts of submerged wood—including wooden ships.

8. WHIP SPIDERS

These leggy creatures are not spiders; they’re in a separate scientific family. They also don’t whip anything. Whip spiders have two long legs that look whip-like, but that are used as sense organs—sort of like an insect’s antennae. Despite their intimidating appearance, whip spiders are harmless to humans.

9. VELVET ANTS

A photograph of a velvet ant
Craig Pemberton, Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 3.0

There are thousands of species of velvet ants … and all are wasps, not ants. These insects have a fuzzy, velvety look. Don’t pat them, though—velvet ants aren’t aggressive, but the females pack a powerful sting.

10. SLOW WORM

The slow worm is not a worm. It’s a legless reptile that lives in parts of Europe and Asia. Though it looks like a snake, it became legless through a totally separate evolutionary path from the one snakes took. It has many traits in common with lizards, such as eyelids and external ear holes.

11. TRAVELER'S PALM

This beautiful tree from Madagascar has been planted in tropical gardens all around the world. It’s not actually a palm, but belongs to a family that includes the bird of paradise flower. In its native home, the traveler’s palm reproduces with the help of lemurs that guzzle its nectar and spread pollen from tree to tree.

12. VAMPIRE SQUID

Drawing of a vampire squid
Carl Chun, Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

This deep-sea critter isn’t a squid. It’s the only surviving member of a scientific order that has characteristics of both octopuses and squids. And don’t let the word “vampire” scare you; it only eats bits of falling marine debris (dead stuff, poop, and so on), and it’s only about 11 inches long.

13. MALE FERN & LADY FERN

Early botanists thought that these two ferns belonged to the same species. They figured that the male fern was the male of the species because of its coarse appearance. The lady fern, on the other hand, has lacy fronds and seemed more ladylike. Gender stereotypes aside, male and lady Ferns belong to entirely separate species, and almost all ferns can make both male and female reproductive cells. If ferns start looking manly or womanly to you, maybe you should take a break from botany.

14. TENNESSEE WARBLER

You will never find a single Tennessee warbler nest in Tennessee. This bird breeds mostly in Canada, and spends the winter in Mexico and more southern places. But early ornithologist Alexander Wilson shot one in 1811 in Tennessee during its migration, and the name stuck.

15. CANADA THISTLE

Though it’s found across much of Canada, this spiky plant comes from Europe and Asia. Early European settlers brought Canada thistle seeds to the New World, possibly as accidental hitchhikers in grain shipments. A tough weed, the plant soon spread across the continent, taking root in fields and pushing aside crops. So why does it have this inaccurate name? Americans may have been looking for someone to blame for this plant—so they blamed Canada.

A version of this story originally ran in 2015.

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18 Tea Infusers to Make Teatime More Exciting
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Make steeping tea more fun with these quirky tea infusers.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

1. SOAKING IT UP; $7.49

man-shaped tea infuser
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That mug of hot water might eventually be a drink for you, but first it’s a hot bath for your new friend, who has special pants filled with tea.

Buy on Amazon.

2. A FLYING TEA BOX; $25.98

There’s no superlaser on this Death Star, just tea.

Buy on Amazon.

3. SPACE STATION; $9.99

astronaut tea infuser
ThinkGeek

This astronaut's mission? Orbit the rim of your mug until you're ready to pull the space station diffuser out.

Buy on ThinkGeek.

4. BE REFINED; $12.99

This pipe works best with Earl Grey.

Buy on Amazon.

5. A RIBBITING OPTION; $10.93

This frog hangs on to the side of your mug with a retractable tongue. When the tea is ready, you can put him back on his lily pad.

Buy on Amazon.

6. ‘TEA’ ALL LIVE IN A YELLOW SUBMARINE; $5.95

It’s just like the movie, only with tea instead of Beatles.

Buy on Amazon.

7. SHARK ATTACK; $6.99

shark tea infuser
Cost Plus World Market

This fearsome shark patrols the bottom of your mug waiting for prey. For extra fun, use red tea to look like the end of a feeding frenzy.

Buy at Cost Plus World Market.

8. PERFECT FOR A RAINY DAY; $12.40

This umbrella’s handle conveniently hooks to the side of your mug.

Buy on Amazon.

9. AN EGGCELLENT INFUSER; $5.75

cracked egg tea infuser
Amazon

Sometimes infusers are called tea eggs, and this one takes the term to a new, literal level.

Buy on Amazon.

10. FOR SQUIRRELY DRINKERS; $8.95

If you’re all right with a rodent dunking its tail into your drink, this is the infuser for you.

Buy on Amazon.

11. HANGING OUT; $12.85

This pug is happy to hang onto your mug and keep you company while you wait for the tea to be ready.

Buy on Amazon.

12. ANOTHER SHARK OPTION; $5.99

If you thought letting that other shark infuser swim around in the deep water of your glass was too scary, this one perches on the edge, too busy chomping on your mug to worry about humans.

Buy on Amazon.

13. RUBBER DUCKIE, YOU’RE THE ONE; $8.95

Let this rubber duckie peacefully float in your cup and make teatime lots of fun.

Buy on Amazon.

14. DIVING DEEP; $8.25

This old-timey deep-sea diver comes with an oxygen tank that you can use to pull it out.

Buy on Amazon.

15. MAKE SWEET TEA; $10

This lollipop won't actually make your tea any sweeter, but you can always add some sugar after.

Buy on Amazon.

16. A SEASONAL FAVORITE; $7.67

When Santa comes, give him some tea to go with the cookies.

Buy on Amazon.

17. FLORAL TEA; $14.99

Liven up any cup of tea with this charming flower. When you’re done, you can pop it right back into its pot.

Buy on Live Infused.

18. KEEP IT TRADITIONAL; $7.97

If you’re nostalgic for the regular kind of tea bag, you can get reusable silicon ones that look almost the same.

Buy on Amazon.

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