Ironic icon

By Phil Plait | November 28, 2009 12:36 pm


OK, so a woman in Massachusetts thinks she sees Jesus in her iron. If she wants to believe that, it’s fine. It should come as no surprise to anyone that I think she is mistaken, and that this is simply a random happenstance, and that it’s so ill-formed and fuzzy that it could be anyone with long hair, and actually looks more like a woman to me, or someone in a straight jacket, and that none of this matters because it’s simply pareidolia anyway.

But I have to give her a bit of credit. She says, "I’m not telling anybody they’re going to be cured or anything if they look at my iron. It’s just a nice story to share," and that the iron "… was my sign that things will be good."

If she wants to interpret this personally, that’s her right, and I’m glad she’s not trying to foist this on others (and I can’t assume that by having a newspaper cover the story, she’s actively promoting it; we don’t know how the paper found out, we don’t know how or if she pursued this, and she doesn’t appear to be trying to profit from this).

Still, I can hope for a world where someday people won’t think that an omnipotent and omniscient God would purposely appear to them as a polymerized chain of organic molecules on a laundry appliance. Or a fried sandwich. I’d think He would have better things to do. But that’s just me.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Pareidolia, Religion, Skepticism
MORE ABOUT: iron, jesus, SMBC

Comments (122)

  1. Looks like the Sphinx to me. ALL HAIL THE SUN GOD RA!

  2. Good for her.

    BTW, when you say “He”, you mean “She”, right?

  3. I’d say it’s the Sphinx’ head on a woman’s body lying on her bed, like on an old black-and-white photograph.

  4. Nomen Publicus

    It’s so obvious – it’s a Klingon, possibly even Kortar himself.

  5. Brian

    It’s Mona Lisa in a straitjacket. She’s not smiling anymore.

  6. theMark

    Mona Lisa. Or the Predator. Take your pick :)

  7. Tom

    Count me firmly in the Sphinx camp with this one.

  8. WJM

    It’s the Mona Lisa, and if you deny that it’s the Mona Lisa, the Mona Lisa will be very angry with you!

  9. MathMike

    Looks like Gallagher about to take a left-handed swing at a watermelon to me.

  10. Dave

    Another vote for Mona Lisa in a straitjacket.

  11. ThurrtyPhiv

    I’m afraid you’re all wrong. It’s Steven Wright.

  12. jb

    nah..George washington….

  13. Gary Ansorge

    God is obviously Homer Simpson.

    I’ve BEEN to WalMart,,,

    As far as Jesus looking like our average long haired, furry freak, I must demur. If my memory serves me correctly(and it usually does) the style in 33AD was very Roman. Shaven and short haired.(Cuts down on the lice)

    Gary 7

  14. It looks to me like somebody is going to be really ticked off that this person burned their clothes.

  15. DaveH
  16. CR

    Looks like a bald guy leaning in front of a dark background… his left shoulder is drooped lower than his right. Oooo, wait, it’s not a bald guy, but one of those robots from the Will Smith I, ROBOT film that came out a few years ago. Yeah, that’s it! Computers and robots are taking over for our own good, and leaving reminders in our appliances!

  17. GD

    I don’t know ….but all of a sudden I have this urge for a grilled cheese sandwich…

  18. Melanie (Australia)

    Proof that ironing is not good for mental health.

  19. @Gary Ansorge: That’s long-eared furry f….

    Oh, you mean the iron.

  20. harknights

    Since she can see whatever she wants even if it doesn’t look like it so can I.

    So I see the WWII era Aircraft carrier Enterprise. Not the nuclear powered carrier…because that would be rediculous.

  21. The ironing is delicious.

  22. Gary Ansorge

    17. Naked Bunny with a Whip Says:

    “That’s long-eared furry f….”

    LOL !!!

    Tanks. I needed that.

    Gary 7

  23. Alareth

    “My toaster is possesed by Satan!”

    “Why do you think that?”

    “It shouts obscenities and describes all the horrible ways I’ll suffer in Hell.”

    “Why don’t you get rit of it?”

    “Because it makes excellent toast.”

    I wonder if Jesus makes crisp creases.

  24. My first thought even before reading the post was, “Hey, it’s the Mona Lisa”, on an iron! Cool! (Umm, I mean, that’s hot!)

    OT, the Edmonton Journal is reporting two bright fireballs were seen on two consecutive nights recently!

  25. Cylon Cat

    Bald. Scrawny. Entirely too preciousssss. Must be Gollum.

  26. Lyr

    I think it looks more like Janis Joplin than Jesus.

  27. cerberus40

    You’re all crazy! That’s Olive Oyl (in profile, looking left).

  28. Adam

    You are all crazy… It’s Abe Lincoln with long hair.

  29. Looks like she needs to use a lower setting and less starch when ironing.

  30. Leander

    “I’d think He would have better things to do.”

    I agree with you on the whole thing, but with that line, you once more manage to sabotage an otherwise perfectly reasonable post. You make the same dimwit mistake many religious folk make who act as if they know how and why God might behave how he does – to assume, if such an entity existed, you’d have any clue whatsoever as a human being what would and what wouldn’t make any sense to such an entity. Any attempt at doing so is the dumbest exercise, and I’m always baffled at how they manage to smuggle themselves into your thought process.

  31. Sili

    It’s an iron. It can’t be a man, then. It must needs be the virgin Mary. Or possibly Mary Magdalene.


  32. Yeebok

    Weirdly .. I see a moonlit beach with the moon reflected in the water .. I don’t see a person.

  33. It looks more like the cover to Sense and Sensibility and Zombies…….

    Another ride on the ferrous wheel, please.


  34. MadScientist

    I see a nuclear mushroom. It must be a sign that the world is going to end – again. I wonder if anyone keeps track of how many times the world has ended in the past 2000 years.

    On the other hand, if I burnt someone’s favorite nylon suit I might claim it was divine intervention too.

  35. Chip

    The other miracle is the faint shape below the “face”. Its an exact replica of the tree branch outside my window. As for the “face”, its obviously the American character actor Edward Everett Horton.

  36. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    Post-semitic church motto : “We also do ironing.”

    what would and what wouldn’t make any sense to such an entity

    Yeah, well. Even if the agent isn’t senseless, there are better things to do with any type of [omni-]potency that is directed towards other agents like us. Multiple agency actions and/or communication is not a one-way street.

    The only way the above argument would make sense is if the agent is alone, or acting as if. Which would make the above action curious indeed. But this isolation is excluded outside of deism.

    [Of course, if this is supposed to mean that theism “is the dumbest exercise”, I have to agree completely.]

  37. I like these skeptic posts; but how come there’s never been one about scientists who see a distinct hockey stick in every data set they analyze?

  38. Skeptic Tim

    Am I the only one who sees the Happy Hooker?

  39. Jon F

    Although I can see Stephen Wright, I think it’s another stand-up comedian, specifically one sending a message from beyond the grave, Mitch Hedberg:

    “This shirt is dry-clean only. Which means it’s dirty.”

  40. @Sully: If you have a story like that, feel free to email it to Phil. Or, heck, just post a link in the comments.

  41. Gary Ansorge

    ,,,and now, an ironic aside as we look at one consequence of a crowded world:,8599,1941230,00.html?xid=rss-biztech-yahoo

    Using bunnies for fuel,,,bummer,,,

    GAry 7

    PS: I always thought of these images as beings, lost in the Phantom Zone, screaming to get out.

    “Ack! This iron! It’s fraking HOT!!”

  42. I see Zombie Shakespeare from The Simpsons Tree House of Horror III.

  43. Jeffersonian

    I, too, am doiling this one as Mona Lisa.
    It must be a sign of snarky irony from DaVinci. Let’s hope he doesn’t start appearing with his self-portrait.

    Can you believe that painting is 506 yrs old? Wow.

  44. Lao Tzu

    No way that’s Jesus. Deuteronomy 27:5 clearly states:
    “Build there an altar to the LORD your God, an altar of stones.
    Do not use any iron tool upon them.”

  45. Michael Kingsford Gray

    It looks like the Sphynx.

  46. Paul M.

    It looks like someone with very little hair to me – Sheridan’s father from B5

  47. Ray

    I think she should let anyone who wants to be cured kiss the iron while its hot. If they aren’t burned it must be a miracle.

  48. gopher65

    It’s clearly Kahless, reaching out to us from Sto-Vo-Kor.

  49. justcorbly

    How do all these people who keep seeing Jesus know what he looked like?

  50. tungah

    It’s clearly Benjamin Frankin.

  51. Definitely the Mona Lisa!
    She looks “HOT” too!


  52. Michelle

    I saw the Mona Lisa too. 😛

  53. Sevenheadedweasel

    I disagree. I’m disappointed by the arrogance this post portrays. Nothing works more against the interest of science then telling someone that their most closely held and irrefutable belief is so laughably wrong as to be stupid. When someone’s beliefs effect policy or my life in any way it’s an issue. When someone is having a tough time and finds some small comfort in something that looks a little like a cherished figure I don’t see stupidity, I see humanity.

  54. kevbo

    I’m just glad it isn’t another Charles Manson.

  55. Benjii

    Looks a bit like Che Guevara

  56. Still not as impressive as Jesus on a dog’s arse

  57. Nick

    Personally, I see Lenin: . My wife saw Mona Lisa too.

  58. gypkap

    People see in Jesus in tree trunks, in pancakes, and even in French Toast and tortillas. So why not a hot iron with scorch marks?

  59. I'd rather be fishin'

    You guys are treating this like it’s some kind of a hoax. Explain why there’s an identical scorch mark on my new shirt.

    And it’s Charles Darwin with a beard!

  60. DLC

    bah! you’re all wrong! clearly it’s JFK assassin Lee Harvey Oswald!

  61. LightPhoenix

    Not much to add (though I go with Mona Lisa as well).

    I just wanted to say that for the most part I agree with Sevenheadedweasel. Why take the piss out of someone who wants a little comfort for herself, if it doesn’t have any effect on others? Religion by itself is not badwrong. It’s when that religion is, as put by Phil, foisted on others that it’s bad. That isn’t the case here, nor is it being used to scam those who have religion.

    If it’s something like the antivaxxers, that’s a different story, a perversion of science. This just feels wrong.

  62. Gary Ansorge

    63. LightPhoenix:

    I disagree.
    The only thing a true adult believes is evidence.
    There is no evidence we can look at and determine it indicates any kind of “supreme” being.
    Children believe in Santa Clause.
    We’re not children anymore.

    We’re all alone.

    We’re all there is.

    No one is going to come and save us.

    If we’re to have grace, we must earn it.

    If we’re to have compassion, we must be that.

    If love is to guide us in our ways, we must create it.

    If we’re going to have a heaven, we’ll have to build it ourselves.

    GAry 7

  63. Buzz Parsec

    Count me as another person seeing Mona Lisa. (This is odd. Usually I see these things as something different from everyone else. On the other hand, after I stared at it a really long time, it started to look like an iron to me. Weird.)

  64. Just me

    “…I think she is mistaken, and that this is simply a random happenstance…”

    It’s fine if all you see is a polymerized chain of organic molecules on a laundry appliance, but one of the significant traits of being human is that our brains are tuned to seeing patterns. And people who have some sort of a religious background are tuned to a very structured set of patterns, so it’s relatively easy for them to see images of Jesus or Mary or whatever. So, it’s not really appropriate, in my opinion to say that she’s mistaken. The world of science deals with facts, but facts are meaningless until we humans give those facts context. And that doesn’t happen until we interpret those facts. So, in this case, you’re both right: yes, it’s a polymerized chain of organic molecules, but it is also a pattern, which this woman has interpreted as an image of Jesus. I see a classical/traditional image of Jesus as well, but I also accept it is a polymerized chain of organic molecules. I see Jesus because I’ve grown up seeing traditional images of Jesus in art, so it’s a pattern that I recognize. I’m not prepared to say that it is Jesus, or that it’s some miraculous, supernatural message from God. But it’s pretty easy to see the image.
    We’re wired to see patterns. It’s key to our survival as a species and as social creatures. Without being able to recognize patterns, we would not be able to communicate with each other, and we would not be able to make sense of our world. Another thing about patterns is how we see or interpret patterns is influenced by our background—if you have no religious background, then you’re probably not going to see Jesus. If you saw Predator and that movie affected you, then you might see the Predator. If you’re familiar with the works of da Vinci, then might see the Mona Lisa. None of those interpretations is necessarily more right or wrong than another.

  65. bb

    It’s obviously Jesus and he will survive!

  66. Pointybirds

    Bah, it looks more like the luscious locks of the Pancake Manor logo:

    So we’ve previously seen Jesus in a pancake, so now we see a pancake where there ought to be a Jesus.

    It’s the circle of life, and it moves us all.

  67. The Sphinx does not have a nose so the resemblance ends there. It is said to have been knocked off by a Sufi fanatic in 1378 because he objected to Sphinx worship by the locals. He was hanged for vandalism. Today we can say that the lady has the full right to worship her iron if she wishes to do so as long as she does not foist it on us. No one will knock off the control switch of the iron. I am told there is a street called Utopia Blvd. in Queens where the Virgin Mary likes to hang out and appear on occasion. Why not!! At least the Archbishop declined comment and that does more for the image of the Church than the Dublin report on cover ups of sexual abuse of children that came out last week.

  68. Casey K

    Holy crap- It’s Kenny G!

  69. Joseph

    I keep looking at it and I keep seeing a creepy skull grinning at me from under a shroud. Gah!

  70. Petrolonfire

    @ 49. Ray Says:

    I think she should let anyone who wants to be cured kiss the iron while its hot. If they aren’t burned it must be a miracle.


    The stoopid it really does burn in that case! 😉

    In this moving his face from grilled Cheese sandwhiches to an iron is it a sign … that Jesus is getting steamy? 😉

  71. Joe

    The IRONY here… is that when PRESSED… it is actually the Mona Lisa… with a receding hair line… and no skin on her face… and a mustache…

    just sayin’

  72. Nigel Depledge

    Sevenheadedweasel (56) said:

    I disagree. I’m disappointed by the arrogance this post portrays. Nothing works more against the interest of science then telling someone that their most closely held and irrefutable belief is so laughably wrong as to be stupid.

    What, you think we should instead respect a belief in something incredible for which no evidence exists at all?

    When someone’s beliefs effect policy or my life in any way it’s an issue.

    Someone’s beliefs effecting policy? That I would love to see!

    Unless you meant affecting?

    When someone is having a tough time and finds some small comfort in something that looks a little like a cherished figure I don’t see stupidity, I see humanity.

    Stupidity, humanity, how do you tell the difference? Seriously?

  73. Earl Wajenberg

    So it has become a function of Discover Magazine to take cheap shots at religious belief — even modest, personal, non-political belief — without any meaningful reference to science?

  74. Nigel Depledge

    LightPhoenix (63) said:

    I just wanted to say that for the most part I agree with Sevenheadedweasel. Why take the piss out of someone who wants a little comfort for herself, if it doesn’t have any effect on others? Religion by itself is not badwrong.

    Good question.

    There are two possible answers:
    (1) because respect must be earned;
    (2) because it is genuinely ridiculous.

  75. Nigel Depledge

    Gary Ansorge (64) said:

    We’re not children anymore.

    We’re all alone.

    Well, we don’t know for sure. There may be intelligent life on another planet somewhere.

    We’re all there is.

    Probably, but we don’t know for sure. After all, how can you disprove the existence of the invisible pink unicorn?

    No one is going to come and save us.

    If we’re to have grace, we must earn it.

    If we’re to have compassion, we must be that.

    If love is to guide us in our ways, we must create it.

    If we’re going to have a heaven, we’ll have to build it ourselves.

    Otherwise I agree with you.

  76. Nigel Depledge

    @ Just me (66) –

    In the main I think you make a good point. However, there is a difference between it being some random assemblage that just happens to look like something that our culture has embedded in our minds and, OTOH, actually being an image of that icon.

    You say there is a pattern there, but that word implies some underlying non-random structure to the formation of the image, which I think is false. There is a random assemblage of partially-oxidised carbon-based polymer that just happens to look a bit like … well, anything you care to associate with it.

    Where you say our minds see a pattern, I would instead say that our minds infer a pattern. The latter can be so even if there is no true pattern to discern (as in the constellations in the night sky, for example). We have evolved to see patterns even where there is no pattern – as they say, it is better to run from the tiger that isn’t than it is to not run from the tiger that is.

  77. GAry7 #64. It’s a long way from seeing an image and having absolute proof of a supreme being. For this person, belief in God was already there. The image gave comfort; a tangible expression. Much of science comes from a leap of faith. 400 years ago, we KNEW the Earth was the center of the universe. 100 years ago, we KNEW that Neptune was the farthest object in the solar system and that galactic nebula were within our galaxy. We now KNOW that these facts were just signposts along the way to a broader understanding of the universe. (Is it even a single place?)

    Many people have had real experiences that they cannot explain and cannot repeat, seen miracles that make no sense but fill them with wonder for the universe around them. Not everyone has those; a shame. That makes such experiences outside their realm of experience and we are experiential beings. Does it make it less real, less powerful? No. It puts it outside the provable framework of the scientific method. This becomes the crux of the issue.

    Much of what you say about compassion, love, heaven is based on lessons from a special teacher. Teachers come along now and again at many times in our lives to show us the way. Earned or not, you have been given the grace to remind us.

  78. Tom K.

    “Honey! come see the image on the iron!
    Not again!
    Hold on, I’ll get the 4 ought steel wool so you can get back to work!

  79. Gary Ansorge

    75. Nigel Depledge:

    It’s somewhat going against cannon to infer there is anything special about us but one thing IS apparent. Even at sublight velocities, IF there were another high tech species in this galaxy AND it had expansionist tendencies, they would settle nearly every habitable planet in this galaxy with their DNA in around 2 million years.(exponential expansion. ain’t it wunnerful?).

    1) There has only been one prior generation of stars built from high levels of metals(calcium, carbon, etc) which are apparently necessary for life to develop. We appear to be very near the earliest stages of potentially life bearing stars in this galaxy. If there are no other high tech Civs around( see above), THEN it is up to us decide if we want this galaxy to have mostly our DNA running things.

    There are a slew of ethical considerations involved in that but I expect we’ll not have any help making those choices. MAy they be wise and compassionate choices.

    Gary 7

  80. Just me

    @79 Nigel Depledge:

    Thanks for the clarification, Nigel. You articulated quite well what I was trying to say. You’re right that we infer patterns where they might not necessarily exist. That’s how we see pictures in clouds or marks on paper (or arrangements of colors of pixels on a computer screen) as letters and words or an image of Jesus on toast or an iron.

    This book I have called Religion Explained, by Pascal Boyer, talks about how we evolved brains to function as inference machines. As you rightly pointed out, I was wrong to say that there is a pattern in the burn mark on the iron. I should have said that the fact that the woman saw a pattern in the burn mark which she identified as Jesus is an evolutionary byproduct of how our brains evolved to function as inference machines.

  81. John Baxter

    Chris Ferguson. That’s worth getting excited about (for a poker fan).

  82. Big Al

    C3PO, definitely C3PO.

  83. Dennis

    Obviously this woman has been making grilled cheese sandwiches with her iron.

    & is it an ironic icon or an iconic iron?

  84. wildride

    It’s probably because I recently rewatched Trial of a Time Lord, but my first thought was it looked like Lord Kiv (played by Christopher Ryan).

  85. Buzz Parsec

    @just me –

    Still she was wrong, because there is no “tiger” there. Just marks on an iron.

    I think the most commonly accepted theory of why we see images in random patterns is that we evolved to do so because of evolutionary pressure from camouflaged predators. Since it is safer to run when there is no tiger than to stay put when there is one, we are more predisposed to see patterns when none exist. However, it is best to be accurate, to run when there *is* a tiger and not to run when there *is no* tiger. Running away unnecessarily has a cost: the cost of the energy expended, the cost of missing a meal or a drink, and the cost of running *into* danger instead of away from it.

    I think it is absolutely fair to say she’s wrong.

  86. Gary Ansorge

    80. John
    “400 years ago, we KNEW the Earth was the center of the universe. 100 years ago, we KNEW that Neptune was the farthest object in the solar system and that galactic nebula were within our galaxy.”

    Actually, we KNEW no such things. Greeks had already calculated the size of earth long before christ and other tribes(China, India, Middle East) had a pretty good idea the Greeks were right.
    Neptune was just the furthest planet we had detected. We were pretty sure(inferring from orbital perturbations of the outer planets orbits) that there was something else out there, so we didn’t KNOW any such thing about Neptune. Positions of nebula was our interpretation of the available data. As scientists, we always know, our knowledge is imperfect. There are just certain things we have pretty well nailed down,,at the moment.

    “Many people have had real experiences that they cannot explain and cannot repeat,”

    Quite true and I’m one of them. A mystical experience is nothing to laugh about (as Jerry GArcia said, “lost my shoes in transit babe, a pile of smoking leather”, which is a pretty accurate description), and as you mentioned, it ain’t replicable(I tried to replicate it, for years.). Unfortunately, while anecdotal data may suggest something worth researching further, it is not itself good evidence of anything. Good evidence is something you can measure, repeat and test. I have read much of the research about stimulating the G mod. None of those who experienced, whatever the heck it is, expressed anything approaching the disorientation I felt afterward. I don’t recommend the “real” experience to anyone hoping to maintain themselves in a mundane reality(one filled with bills,etc).

    Life is, at the least, interesting. It is an experience filled with choices. All the consequences I experience from my choices are MINE. Nobody made those choices for me. Not even god,,,

    GAry 7

  87. Mariette

    I don’t know about you guys, but I see the Mona Lisa. Maybe it’s from the lack of “eyebrows.”

  88. Just me

    @88 Buzz Parsec

    Ah, but this is the important thing: running away is necessary if the brain interprets the visual stimuli coming in and infers a tiger—regardless of whether there is, in fact, a tiger present or not. The brain has to take in all this stimuli and make decisions as to what’s necessary for survival or what’s not. If the brain infers that there is a tiger present, then the relative cost of potentially missing a meal or drink; or of running *into* another unforeseen danger is minimal. What’s most relevant at the moment is the tiger.

    From a God’s-eye (HAHAHA!) view, we might be able to see that the person erroneously inferred that a tiger was present (possibly the result of the sunlight dappling through leaves above and illuminating orange/yellow/brown leaves near the ground), the “cost” being that the person ran away, and into the jaws of a waiting alligator that he didn’t see. While from an absolute perspective, we can say that the person was “wrong”, the truth is that the person’s brain did everything right.

    Bringing this on topic, seeing Jesus’ face (or anyone’s face, for that matter) in the burn mark on the iron may be “wrong” in an absolute sense, but it’s the result of the brain doing what it’s supposed to do: recognize and infer patterns. And more importantly, our brains are specifically tuned to seeing human faces, because we are necessarily social creatures.

    Seeing or perceiving religious figures—or having religious concepts, I believe (no pun intended), is an evolutionary byproduct of how our brains developed as inference machines. The nature and function of religion is a particularly interesting and extremely complex problem in my opinion. It’s naïve and narrow-minded to simply dismiss religion as superstitious nonsense. To me, the more important question is, how or why did we evolve brains that are capable of having religious concepts? But that’s getting beyond the scope of this discussion. Besides, I don’t have any answers yet; I’m still investigating. 😉

  89. Gary7

    You got what I meant by knowing things. We’ve thought we’ve known alot of things. Our knowledge is lacking; always has and probably always will. Thankfully, we ask questions, right ones and wrong ones and it allows our knowledge to evolve and grow.


  90. Just me

    @91 continued—

    Saying the woman is “wrong” for seeing Jesus in the burn mark on the iron would not be much different than saying that I’m wrong for seeing a photo of BA in front of the space shuttle launch pad near the top of this page, since what I’m actually seeing is an arrangement of coloured pixels on my computer screen. I will note a difference between the two examples, though—before someone else does: the polymerized chain of organic molecules on the iron is “random” (not deliberately assembled), whereas the arrangement of coloured pixels on my computer screen is deliberately assembled. But in both cases, our brains are doing essentially the same thing: making inferences and recognizing patterns (whether there is a deliberate pattern or not).

  91. Pyro Lizard

    I saw the Mona Lisa, first. After looking for a few more minutes, I saw George Bush. Not the most logical connection, but what can you expect out of a random burnt blob of plastic?

  92. mfumbesi

    I also vote for the Mona Lisa, in drag.

  93. Mark Schaffer

    Look, there is no proof a real Jesus existed and even if such a figure did live, to think he was the son of the creator of the universe is fantasy. Bonus, there were no photographs so no one can claim to know what a Jesus looked like, if he was not a myth. Isn’t there some science you could be discussing?

  94. Just me

    @96 Mark Schaffer:

    Isn’t there some science you could be discussing?

    We’re in Phil’s house. He has asserted his right to arrange his furniture the way he sees fit.

  95. Just lower the temperature setting when you are ironing your cheap Jesus T-shirts and this issue will sort itself out. Really.

  96. Darth Vader’s helmet, ripped open, revealing his crusty old-man face.

  97. DeepField

    It is NOT the sphinx: almost al the pictures of the sphinx are taken from the right side…

  98. fernando

    i saw jesus in my crap from just some minutes ago… wanna see the picture ?

    …by the way, i also wan’t to see the picture of the shirt this lady burnt… probably she shit herself and facing her husband’s face came up quickly with the… ‘look, it’s jesus!’ excuse

  99. Blondin

    It’s entirely appropriate for Jesus to appear on that part of an iron – the sole (soul) plate.

  100. Nigel Depledge

    @ Just me (93) –

    Hmmm … I think there is a difference between the image of Phil on your computer screen ands this splodge on the iron that you have overlooked. One of them is recogniseably Phil and couldn’t really be anything else. The other is so vague that it could be absolutely anything.

    I think that’s what I was getting at earlier, that even though your brain is performing the same pattern-recognition procedure in each case, the difference is that, in the case of the photo of Phil, the tiger (so to speak) really is a tiger; whereas in the splodge on the iron, there is no tiger.

    In the image of Phil, there is a genuine pattern. On the iron, our minds infer a pattern where there is merely a random arrangement of charred stuff.

  101. DanO

    I didn’t know jesus had a receding hairline.

  102. charles j.slavis, jr.

    It’s True! It’s True! The two nail holes are over her head! And I can see where she was outlined by sub machine gun bullets. Oh! That’s right. Jesus was male.

  103. charles j.slavis, jr.

    Jesus was a Catholic! Ask my grandmother.

  104. Revyloution

    I hope she wasnt ironing fabric blended of wool and linen.

    Straight ticket to hell, that is. Perhaps that’s what Jesus was trying to tell her.

  105. charles j.slavis, jr.

    The nose on the face looking to the left reminds me of jug head.

  106. charles j.slavis, jr.

    Is this a picture of a knife throwing act?

  107. charles j.slavis, jr.

    It’s a desperate house wife.

  108. charles j.slavis, jr.

    To hell with everybody!

  109. I thought it looked like the “Jaws” movie poster.

  110. charles j.slavis, jr.

    Oh! My Gosh! You got it!

  111. charles j.slavis, jr.

    Dun! Dun! Dun! Dun! Dun! Dun!

  112. charles j.slavis, jr.

    Who pulled it’s teeth?

  113. Breklor

    It’s DEFINITELY a Klingon.

  114. zamia

    Jesus in a Mud Puddle!
    When I was a kid, a long time ago, a photographer took a picture of a mud puddle in Japan. He was guided by a mysterious urge to do so, and lo! when he processed the photo, there was Jesus. Not everybody could find Jesus in the pic, if you couldn’t, that meant you weren’t a good Christian.
    I couldn’t. I gave up on the idea of being a Christian. So much for divine revelation in a mud puddle.

  115. Tim

    Here’s another one —

    I must say, the pancake looks pretty good. I’d have eaten it without a second glance. Who knows what would have happened to me…

  116. Nes

    I saw a nun in a straight jacket, though after reading the comments I can see the Mona Lisa as well.


Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!


See More

Collapse bottom bar