Sound effects created by MAD cartoonist Don Martin:

  • CHONK KRAKLE GLUK: man eating glass
  • FFFFOOOOOOOO: Frankenstein exhaling
  • FIDIP-FIDIP: ant boxing a cow’s udder
  • FLIFFLAFF: Dracula opening his cape
  • FLOON: atomic blast at Ground Zero
  • FOOWOOM: flamethrower scorching condemned man
  • FWAP: construction worker slapping sign out of a hippie’s hand
  • FWEE: hat flying off the head of a man reacting to a horror comic
  • FWUMP: werewolf being caught by a dogcatcher
  • GARUNK GASPLOOSH GARUNK GASPLOOSH: Indian pumping water out of cactus
  • GEEEN: Plasticman giving a guy on the 32nd floor the finger
  • KLANG: water skier’s head hitting armored truck
  • KLOONK KA-DOONK: blind man and seeing eye dog walking into pole
  • KOONG: man getting hit in head with wheelbarrow full of cement
  • KWONK: Mary Worth getting punched out for not minding her own business
  • NOT-A-SOUND: Indian running through woods
  • ZWEECH: The Phantom closing the zipper on his purple bodysuit

PITTWEEN SPLATCH THORK BLOOF THLIK GLITCH GLUTCH PITTWOON PLAF PLOOF SPLITCH THUK THAP PLOOP is the sound of a bullet ricocheting off a ceiling, through six heads, off a wall, then through six more heads.

Image Problem

Actual names of politicians in the state of Meghalaya, India:

  • Adolf Lu Hitler Marak
  • Lenin R. Marak
  • Stalin L. Nangmin
  • Frankenstein W. Momin
  • Tony Curtis Lyngdoh

Hitler Marak told the Hindustan Times: “Maybe my parents liked the name and hence christened me Hitler. … I am happy with my name, although I don’t have any dictatorial tendencies.”

Watch Your Step

Vaucanson’s Shitting Duck was one of the more unsavory products of the French Enlightenment.

When it was unveiled by Jacques de Vaucanson in 1739, thousands watched the “canard digérateur” stretch its neck to eat grain from a hand. The food then dissolved, “the matter digested in the stomach being conducted by tubes, as in an animal by its bowels, into the anus, where there is a sphincter which permits it to be released.” These inner workings were all proudly displayed, “though some ladies preferred to see them decently covered.”

Why make fake duck shit when the world is so well supplied with the real thing? It was part of the Enlightenment’s transition from a naturalistic to a mechanical worldview. Suddenly a duck was not a God-given miracle but a machine made of meat, and complex automatons carried the promise of mechanized labor, stirring a cultural revolution.

Goethe mentioned Vaucanson’s automata in his diary, and Sir David Brewster called the duck “perhaps the most wonderful piece of mechanism ever made.” Sadly, the whole thing was a fake: The droppings were prefabricated and hidden in a separate compartment. Back to the drawing board.


When sporgles spanned the floreate mead
And cogwogs gleet upon the lea,
Uffia gopped to meet her love
Who smeeged upon the equat sea.
Dately she walked aglost the sand;
The boreal wind seet in her face;
The moggling waves yalped at her feet;
Pangwangling was her pace.

— Harriet R. White


Dog barks around the world:

  • English: woof, woof
  • Albanian: ham, ham
  • Arabic: haw, haw
  • Bulgarian: bau, bau
  • Danish: vov, vov
  • Estonian: auh, auh
  • Farsi: vogh, vogh
  • Finnish: hau, hau
  • French: ouaf, ouaf
  • German: wau, wau
  • Greek: gav, gav
  • Hindi: bho, bho
  • Icelandic: voff, voff
  • Italian: bau, bau
  • Japanese: wan, wan
  • Korean: mung, mung
  • Latvian: vau, vau
  • Mandarin Chinese: wang, wang
  • Norwegian: voff, voff
  • Polish: hau, hau
  • Romanian: ham, ham
  • Russian: gav, gav
  • Spanish: guau, guau
  • Swedish: voff, voff
  • Thai: hoang, hoang

Robert Benchley wrote, “A boy can learn a lot from a dog: obedience, loyalty, and the importance of turning around three times before lying down.”