Melissa Pritchard

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The Odditorium

The man behind Ripley's Believe It Or Not!, and his "Ghostly Appendage."

"If an Appendage may be allowed an opinion, here is mine: Given an era of less anxiety and more discretion, take away the Great Depression and two World Wars, and Ripley might have been your run of the mill suburban crackpot. A plastic bag sorter, hoarder of stoppers and snaps, jam jars, jawbreakers, broken ping pong paddles, push mowers, racially inspired lawn ornaments, waffle irons. He was simply a man at ease with bizarre objects, weird bibelots, fantastic freaks of nature who made him feel, by association, less odd."