Cool Weird Awesome-logo

Cool Weird Awesome

Arts & Culture Podcasts >

Cool Weird Awesome carves out a few minutes each day for the great stuff. The stuff we all need so we don't think the world has gone completely crazy.

Cool Weird Awesome carves out a few minutes each day for the great stuff. The stuff we all need so we don't think the world has gone completely crazy.
More Information


United States


Cool Weird Awesome carves out a few minutes each day for the great stuff. The stuff we all need so we don't think the world has gone completely crazy.




Is It A Tortoise, Or Home Improvement Project?

Two weeks ago, the staff at the Humane Society of San Diego had to figure out how to help a tortoise with a hole in its shell. Veterinarians Daniel Barbour came up with a plan involving a trip to the hardware store. Plus: meet Ron Minis, a musician who figured out how to play the classic guitar solo from Guns 'N' Roses' "Sweet Child O'Mine" despite the fact that he doesn't play guitar,. Vet invents new procedure to save injured tortoise (FOX 5 San Diego) Dude Mics A Piano Like A Guitar,...


Sure, I’m Petty, Just Not Paypal-Petty

A group of researchers has been looking at the science behind digital pettiness - that’s like if you go out to eat with somebody and then use Paypal or Venmo to send them the exact amount of money to cover your order, down to the penny. Maybe this isn’t a surprise, but the research suggests that if you’re too particular about paying back the exact amount, it can take a toll on your friendships. Maybe you'd be better off taking your friends to the Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, Rhubarb...


Venus: If You Lived Here, You’d Have Melted By Now

Today's the 50th anniversary of an overlooked but important visit to a fairly nasty place… the planet Venus. The Venera 5 craft isn't well remembered, partly because it only got to do its atmospheric testing for an hour before the hellscape that is the second planet basically wrecked it, but it did teach us some important new things about Venus. In short: a nice planet, but you wouldn't want to live there. You might, though, want to live in McMinnville, Oregon, which is kicking off its...


Ooh, That Smell: A Corpse Flower Blooms In Chicago

What’s in a name? That which we call a corpse flower by any other name would smell as bad. The Chicago Botanic Garden has issued a bloom watch for one of its corpse flowers - not humans' favorite scent ever, but still a special occasion, because a corpse flower in the wild only blooms every two to five years. Plus: a college library in Australia evacuates over a suspected gas leak, only to find someone had brought in something that smells even stronger than a corpse flower. Java 2.0...


Do Tacos Dream Of Electric Tongues?

For this Taco Tuesday we salute the Washington State University researchers behind the latest in electric tongue technology. The virtual tongue system can better distinguish spiciness than human tongues - and for longer periods of time, too. Plus: a visit to Tio’s Tacos in Riverside, California, where the food is memorable, and the decor is unforgettable. An electric tongue can handle more spicy foods than you can (Science Daily) Tio's Tacos In Riverside Hides A Vast Outdoor Sculpture...


Australia’s Biggest Little Spelling Error

Australians have been laughing, cursing, sighing and facepalming over a misspelled word on the newest printing of the Australian $50 dollar note. They left out an I in the word “responsibility,” and no one in the country is apparently missing the irony of misspelling that particular word and not catching it until 46 million of them had been sent out into the financial world. Creating currency is a complex process, so it’s only natural that there are flaws. Most of the errors get caught...


Treat Your Mother Subreddit Right

It’s 150 years to the day that the presidents of the Union Pacific and Central Pacific Railroads drove a ceremonial golden spike into the first railroad line to cross North America. That's the big event of the weekend - oh, there's also a thing called Mother's Day? Okay, well for you all let's pay tribute to the Mom For A Minute Subreddit, which provides a virtual Reddit mom for you when your own maternal relationship is unresolved. Plus: the story of writer Dave Wain, who's paying tribute...


Dear Ralph Baer, Thanks, Signed, All The Video Gamers

Ralph Baer invented home video games from his workshop in Manchester, New Hampshire - and now the city is honoring this gaming pioneer with a "Baer Square," complete with a statue, in a city park. Plus: this weekend, a place called the Maritime Republic of Eastport in Annapolis is holding "the least challenging athletic event ever conceived." It's a race that's one-twentieth of a kilometer long. The Father of the Video Game: The Ralph Baer Prototypes and Electronic Games (Smithsonian...


The Spy Whale Who Loved Me

The story of the whale wearing a GoPro that might be some kind of Russian surveillance agent is pretty wild, but it's not even close to the first time governments have turned to animals for surveillance purposes. In the Cold War, the CIA tried to train a cat to infiltrate the Soviet Embassy in DC - sadly, they did not name it Felis Leiter. Plus: the audio phenomenon known as the "cocktail party effect" is not just for humans. Dogs have it too! Which means dogs should come to cocktail parties...


The Biggest Binge-Watch Ever

The new film “Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project" tells the story of a Philadelphia librarian and activist who spent decades recording every TV program she possibly could. She left 70,000 videocassettes in all, which is now being digitized to help us fill in some fascinating gaps in mass media history. Plus: the story of a man whose windshield was smashed by a flying turtle. And no, it wasn't a real-life game of Mario Kart. Tribeca Film Review: ‘Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project’...


Change The (English) Channel

Today is the 25th anniversary of the formal opening of the Channel Tunnel, a 31.4 mile long, mostly undersea rail tunnel connecting the city of Calais in northern France with the English town of Folkestone, Kent. The commemoration ceremony was a diplomatic coup but an engineer's nightmare: they had to run a train carrying Queen Elizabeth II and a train with French President Francois Mitterand toward each other... on the same track. Plus: a look at how the designers of the world's longest...


Here In My Hollywood Car Exhibit, I Feel Safest Of All

The Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles is about to open a new exhibit called “Hollywood Dream Machines: Vehicles of Science Fiction and Fantasy." If you’ve ever wanted to get close to the coolest rides the big screen ever shared with us - like, say, the DeLorean in "Back to the Future" - this is your chance. Plus: a guy in Arizona tries to skirt the carpool lane rules with a scheme that could have come straight out of one of the "Mannequin" movie franchise. Check out Batman’s and...


2 Dope Pirate Queens

The Louisiana Pirate Festival is getting underway in Lake Charles, which is as good a reason as any to talk about two of the most remarkable stories in pirate history: Cheng I Sao, a Chinese pirate queen who commanded 400 ships and 70,000 men and never lost a battle; and Ireland's Grace O’Malley, who, as the story is sometimes told, gave birth to one of her four children - and then, just hours later, grabbed her gun and successfully drove off a group of raiders. Louisiana Pirate...


The Ballad of Heckboy

In Dickson, Tennessee, a movie theater showing a certain movie about a certain bright red dude with horns decided the name was a little too brash to put on a marquee facing a church, and decided to clean it up a little and advertised a showing of, and I quote, “Heckboy.” Swearing is not for everyone, of course, but it does have one really big backer: science. Swearing is still mostly a no-no on TV, which leads to weird TV-friendly versions of expletive-filled movies where characters call...


Sad-Eyed Wallaby Of The Lowlands

Bob Dylan still doesn’t like cell phone cameras at his concerts, judging by the admonition he gave a crowd this month. And yet, one of the most famous images was a concert photo taken by a random guy in the crowd! Plus: a group of poppy-fueled wallabies has been getting doped up and making crop circles. Every wallaby must get stoned? Five Of Bob Dylan’s Photographers Share Their Best Dylan Stories (Stereogum) Stoned wallabies are making crop circles in Tasmania (ABC Australia) Help make...


De-ice De-ice, Baby

A team at the University of British Columbia has developed a coating that has something called low interfacial toughness - in short, instead of ice building up on your car until it’s almost impossible to scrape off… it collapses under its own weight and just slides to the ground. Not all heroes wear capes. Plus: some heroes do wear capes, they just get turned away from the scene by the Mounties. Clearing an icy windshield is about to get easier, says UBC engineer (University of British...


Ship To Shark Communication

A new study led by a researcher from Duke University has spotted female sand tiger sharks returning to the same shipwrecks, sometimes over months or even years. Are they taking a rest stop on their migration routes? Are they mating there - like a pirate-themed make-out spot for sharks? Plus: sand sculpture artisans are returning this weekend to Port Aransas, Texas, for the Texas SandFest. Sand Tiger Sharks Return to Same Shipwrecks Off N.C. Coast (Duke University) Texas SandFest Send in a...


I Love Drone Lamp

Japanese designer Kazuhiro Yamanaka has just released a flying drone lamp - this little light of yours will fly around the room with you as you move. Imagine how cool an episode of Ghost Hunters would be if they had one. Plus: what would an exercise video be like if the celebrity host wasn't really into exercise? Debbie Reynolds made exactly that video and it's amazing. Flying Drone Lamp By Kazuhiro Yamanaka Uses Sensors To Follow Your Movements (designboom) Watching Shelley Winters Go...


Take Off Your Password and Jacket

Passwords are totally out of control and no one’s happy about it. On the plus side, the security studies about how bad we are at passwords are pretty funny to read - like the new one from the UK that says one of the most common breached passwords is... Blink 182. Plus: the worldwide phenomenon that is "Baby Shark" has been welcome news for aquariums, if not for many parents. Millions using 123456 as password, security study finds (BBC) It’s a girl! (National Mississippi River Museum and...


The Many Moods Of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Thirty years ago today was the last regular season game of one of the greats on and off the court. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar scored more points than any NBA player ever - and he may have set the record for most kinds of post-basketball success, from doing fight scenes with Bruce Lee to writing on the reboot of Veronica Mars. And he's an airplane pilot - he's got clearance, Clarence. Plus: a hospital in Modesto, CA is trying out a new way to help its youngest patients get ready for the operating...