This Week

[May 20-26th, 2018] An island where childbirth is outlawed, legal protections for the smell of Play-Doh, and a shipwreck that could be worth $17 billion.

Baby’s Birth Is Illegal

We’ve covered places where dying is banned, but on the tiny island of Fernando De Noronha, giving birth is against the rules. The island sits 227 miles from the nearest mainland city where they can receive proper care. The mother, who has given birth on the mainland before, was unaware of her pregnancy according to officials on the island, and the baby girl is the first child born on the island in 12 years.

Play-Doh Smell

The United States Patent and Trademarks Office doesn’t usually like to grant trademarks for scents, but Hasbro has successfully gained protection for the smell of Play-Doh. Described as sweet, slightly musky, vanilla-like, and with overtones of cherry; children and parents have been smelling Play-Doh since 1956. Believe it or not, it’s one of only 13 scents protected by U.S. law.


Zombie Alert In Florida

When the power in Lake Worth Florida went out this week, citizens received a disturbing message on their phones: a zombie alert was in effect. The push notification came at 1:45 in the morning along with the outage, panicking some residents but was later retracted by the city.

zombie alert

Coma Caused By Smelling Book

Martin Greenwood was researching his ancestry, combing through hundred-year-old scrapbooks and joke books when he suddenly fell into a six-day coma. Believe it or not, the ancient paper contained spores that caused severe respiratory problems. Despite the multi-month hospital visit, he thinks his ancestors would have found the whole thing pretty funny.

Shipwreck Worth Up To $17 Billion

Over 300 years ago, a Spanish galleon loaded with treasure sank in the Caribbean while fighting off a British ship. The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) found the wreck in 2015, but the find was kept secret until proper authorities approved a public announcement.