In the first hour, author Varla Ventura shared some of the strange stories from her new work, Book of the Bizarre. Ventura talked about ancient clay tablets uncovered from a human sacrificial pit in Tartaria, Transylvania in 1961. Known as the Transylvanian Tablets, these artifacts contain the language of a Stone Age agricultural tribe which predates Sumerian writing by a millennium and Minoan writing by 2,000 years, she said.
Ventura recounted an interesting tale about General Ulysses S. Grant and his wife, who were supposed to attend the theater with Lincoln on April 14, 1865 -- the day the 16th President was assassinated. Grant's wife had a dream premonition of danger, Ventura explained, so the two left Washington, D.C. It was later learned that General Grant had also been on John Wilkes Booth's hit list, she noted.
Ventura also talked about the Pennsylvania man who sued Satan for causing him misery, an odd law that makes it illegal in some states to ingest duck dander (because of its intense hallucinogenic properties), and the Bateson Revival Device, which made it possible for people who had been buried alive to sound a bell and alert someone in the graveyard of their predicament.