Here There Be Sea Monsters

Medieval and renaissance maps are resplendent with sea monsters, but what were these fanciful beasts all about? In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Julie breakdown the science, economics and mythology of sea serpents, walruses and whales the size of islands.

Blow Your Mind: In the Lair of the Rat King

The furniture is chewed and the cupboard raided of every last crumb. Feces litters the house and very walls seem alive with the clawed scurry of diseased rodents. You've evacuated the the children, grandmama and the family dog. Even now they seek refuge at the church, as you drive your axe into the floor and pull back splintered boards. As you cast your flickering lantern light down on the horror that squirms beneath your home: a dozen worm-like tails knotted in blood and excrement, gleaming mad eyes and the hideous shriek of the Rattenk├Ânig.

The Blob Attacks Alaska and Other Cryptozoological Letdowns

So I just found out that Alaskans spotted an unidentified organic blob in the waters off the Chukchi Sea. Would this turn out to be something new and amazing, an established natural phenomenon or this year's bigfoot hoax?

Not to alarm any readers out there in the U.K., but according to a recent Telegraph article, there's a chance Satan may have walked through your backyard earlier this month. On March 5, 2009, a woman in Devon woke to find the bipedal cloven hoof marks in the snow. Check out the video from CFZTV to see actual footage. According to local legend, a very similar set of tracks appeared in the snow 150 years ago, in an incident known as "the devil's footprints." The February 1855 incident reportedly involved a 100-mile (160-kilometer) stretch of tracks, which even crossed 14-foot (4-meter) walls. While the devil explanation certainly captured the popular imagination, skeptics aplenty attributed the tracks to everything from electrical disturbances to runaway kangaroos and a rope-trailing hot air balloon. The cloven appearance, in turn, could have been due to a freeze-thaw action.