I remember watching Ripley’s Believe It Or Not on TV and just being amazed. Then as an adult traveling wanting to visit Ripley’s museums. I can admit it, the strange has always fascinated me. It puts the bizarre out there and contradicts the very things Mom told us not to do. In the new Ripley’s Believe It Or Not: Strikingly True book, you’ll find it bizarre around the world!
One of my favorites in Strikingly True is the dramatic 8-page gatefold pullout that celebrates the sideshow performers who appeared at Ripley’s first ever Odditorium—at the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair. Seems my fixation with the bizarre isn’t the first, there are generations behind me!
At first glance, page 59 looks like a vintage photograph. Then Li’l Man and I read page 58, which tells about the photo. It’s done with dead ants…200,000 of them. The artist pays tribute to his younger brother. There is also a warning beneath the photograph: “Red harvester ants are native to the southwestern USA and are relatively large, measuring 1/2 in (1.3 cm) long. They are venomous and will give a painful bite!”
It was creepy, but Li’l man and I kept right on reading.
Then we discovered on page 124, Steve McFarlane. Guess what? He’s just down the road from us in South Jordan, Utah. He’s part of the book because his “Before” and “After” picture shows how he can displace some of his internal organs to suck his stomach in with spectacular effect.
On the page across from MacFarlane, we meet Jinxi Boo, from Southern California. She’s the mother of three and a trip to Disneyland as a teenager started a love that transformed her. When she was 30, she got a small cherry tattoo on her ankle, now almost her entire body is covered in tattoos. Her throat and chest host a spectacular tattoo of an octopus that took 26 hours to complete. And my family judges me for wanting “Bon Jovi” tattooed on my foot!
Li’l Man remains fascinated by the high-resolution photos. He sits on the steps and turns the pages and I hear him say, “This is some pretty freaky stuff, Mom.” I have to check it out and we become emerged in the world of unusual, unbelievable, and amazing!
Ripley’s Believe It Or Not: Strikingly True does not disappoint. It’s the bizarre, amazing, and true stories chronicled to create a beautiful book that entertains and will have you exclaiming, “No! I don’t believe it!”
This 256-page book is beautiful and fun and can be purchased through Amazon.com just in time for Halloween. It has a retail value of $28.95, but today I saw it listed on Amazon for $17.96
Take a peek with a virtual look inside the book.*I received a copy of Ripley’s Believe It or Not in order to facilitate an honest review. The opinions where expressed, are my own and were in no way influenced by the sponsor. Others experiences may vary.