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Odd Index [Paperback]

Stephen Spignesi
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Aug. 31 1994
Guaranteed to alarm and entertain, this madcap collection of weird lists contains thousands of the most peculiar, outrageous, mind-boggling, infuriating, enlightening, and just plain useless tidbits of trivia ever assembled. Subjects range from weird laws concerning women's feet to sexual phobias, from notable criminals' last meals to celebrity sightings of UFOs.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Some fun, but too much about sex Sept. 20 2002
At first I was really enjoying this book, but the longer I glanced at it, the less additional fun I got out of it.
Far too many lists have to do with sex, some of them quite repetitive. Booo-ring! We just don't need a list of a couple hundred euphemisms for having sex, which didn't even include some of my favorites, and some of which haven't been used in a couple hundred years. I did like the preliminary commentary to this particular list, though, pointing out that many of the euphemisms are far more explicit than the bare-bones phrase they were meant to replace.
Trivia about religion and death is interesting. I enjoyed reading about the steps in a medical-legal autopsy; if you are a murder-mystery reader, you'll like that too. Other lists I enjoyed: 20 alleged cases of backwards phrases in recordings, along with an explanation of how such phrases might occur. Reasons to believe that Paul was dead. (If you don't understand that phrase, you're the wrong generation anyway.) Movie anachronisms. Longest movies ever made.
The lists about sex will probably appeal more to some people than they did to me, so my reaction shouldn't discourage you from buying this. It's a great sort of book to keep in the bathroom so that you can read a couple of pages at a time and then put it down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating compendium of strange information. Oct. 8 1997
By A Customer
This is one of those great fun books that you keep beside your favorite chair to pick up and browse through while the commercials are running on tv and you're waiting for 'Seinfeld' to resume. To quote from the introduction: " The Odd Index is the ultimate compilation of humorous, peculiar, outrageous, gross, mind-boggling, raunchy, infuriating, enlightening, disgusting, and just plain useless information ever assembled........... Just reading the table of contents will be enough to suck you in." unquote. It's all true. This is a delightful little book that will provide hours and hours of informative browsing. For instance, did you know that at one time Mickey Mouse was banned in the United States? Well, he was, back in 1932. There's a list of 51 banned books and one cartoon. Examples of banned books are The Bible in the Soviet Union as late as 1926 and The Merchant of Venice in the US in 1931. In Spain in 1720, the book Robinson Crusoe was denoted as a banned. These are only a few examples of the titles listed. The book contains various sorts of lists that include 40 euphemisms for the Devil, including Old Harry, The Arch Fiend, Scratch, and Queed. There's 195 names for the penis, including Mr. Happy; 75 aliases for female breasts such as The Upper Works, Hooters, and Begonias. For sexual intercourse we are exposed to no less than 228 different names that are used for this activity, including Boink Someone, Dance the Matrimonial Polka, and Parallel Park. Do you know the 9 types of angels? Well, it seems they are divided into 3 choirs and under each choir are the names of each category. There's a list of 22 things invented by Leonardo da Vinci hundred's of years before they were 'reinvented' to include the alarm clock, the flying machine, and the telescope. Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars an odd book March 16 2002
By Ted
This is an excellent book that has been around for a while.
It is similar in many ways to the "Book of Lists" by Irving Wallace and his son, David Wallechinksy.
This book covers lists of unusual things, such as Unusual foods from around the world, A description of the most contreversial pictures in Madonna's book "sex", Acts of Violence in Bret Easton Ellis' book "American Psycho" (Now a movie). There is a listing of the foods that contain the most colesterol, a list of body parts that people pierce, (including fingernails), Methods of execution and torture throughout the ages, and some other lists which some may consider a bit vulgar.
This book is suggested for mature readers only. But it is good.
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1.0 out of 5 stars A totally waste of useless facts April 24 2003
I bought this book waiting to find really interesting and unusual facts.
Hard was my disappointment when one of the author's odd things was to point out almost a hundred different ways to name the sexual intercourse, for instance.
The book is plagued with ridiculous things that if desired would be found on the Internet but which not merit to write a book.
In my opinion do not spend a dime on this book. Instead, if you want to read more about curious and exotic things, I would reccommend Cecil Adams' Straight dope or the best one in these fields: Isaac Asimov.
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By A Customer
This book would be a great resource for aspiring mystery, suspense or porn writers. From the stages of rigor mortis to squeamish curiosities, it's all covered, or uncovered, as the case may be. Some items are not appropriate for non-adults -- excerpts describing photos from Madonna's sex book, excerpts describing graphic murders from American Psycho... there's a reason people avoid these items. Choice. For reference or amusement purposes only, but be warned, some items warrant skipping to retain your lunch. Received as a joke gift; not a self-chosen purchase.
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By A Customer
I was frankly disappointed by this book. There's too much "filler" and too much stuff that is too specialized. For example, I'm not a "Three Stooges" fan and the FIRST entry was some weird detail about their antics. Besides, this is TV- it's not real. To be "odd" I think it should probably be "strange but true". Several good topics were about the messages in records, the idiot savants, and some others but on the whole the book was fair and the listings quite arbitrary. I do like his Woody Allen book, though.
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