"What is this pot inside of the fireplace of the apartment I am renting in Italy?"
A: "Bed warmer. Fill the thing up with hot coals and slide it under bed linens to warm them up."
"What is this weird old wooden box with padding? At least 100 years old."
A: "It’s a vanity box. The pockets would have held perfumes or makeup items."
"Pumpkin thing opens on a hinge, latch inside with a small glass jar. A sharp pin is attached to the jar. There’s a flat glass surface that opens to reveal a little compartment."
A: "It might be a “vinaigrette,” a piece of jewelry containing smelling salts or perfume that women hung from a chatelaine chain in Victorian times."
"This small oval object was in a (sealed) bag of rye grain.. it is brown with white specs and appears to be made from a solid material, but rather light weight. Any ideas? Will a tiny dragon hatch from it if I heat it well?"
A: "It’s a lupine seed, which is a type of bluebonnet."
"There were hundreds of these in a parking area they are all less than a gram in weight"
A: "Looks like curtain weights – sewn into the corners."
"100 yr old kids shoes ‘corrects weakness of ordinary veldts’"
A: "I assume it’s a shortening of Veldtschoen, or field shoes, a specific style of shoe construction supposedly developed in, well, the veldt of (edit: not SA, apparently in the Netherlands*). So it’s not correcting defects in the kids, it’s claiming to be an improvement on the style/construction of shoe."
"Found these in the trails at Lake Anna state park VA. What are these thing?"
A: "Surveyor’s markers"
"Found four of these capsules filled with what appears to be metal shavings?"
A: "It’s a pill for ruminant animals."
"Moon face type thing found buried 6 inches in my yard."
A: "Looks like a lawn ornament of a face or moon."
"Boards attached to my fence with chains. I can’t even think of any use for them besides annoying the crap out of me when it’s windy"
A: "They’re to keep stacked wood from falling over. split pieces of wood are often cut to a certain length."
"What is this? There’s a black liquid leaking from our fridge. It’s kind of sticky, and it’s not from the freezer. Is it oil?"
A: "It’s most likely random sludge from the drip pan."
"What is this component I found on the street? Key for scale, appears to be electronic."
A: "It’s a solenoid that’s come out of a safe."
"Too small for neck, too floppy for wrist, no marking or branding… how on earth do you wear this thing? Is it missing a piece?"
A: "The strap goes around the wrist and the ring goes on the middle finger."
"Thick cast iron metal, jungle themed. Found in a forest not near any houses. Definitely old, no houses around where it was found. Wooden frame and no other markings."
A: "That is the back of a small bench for a child."
"What are those two circles thing on the dash of my 05′ toyota prius?"
A: "Light sensors and water detectors. For head lights and wipers."
"Tall and thin wooden structure in Canadian farmland."
A: "It’s a corn crib for sure!"
"What are these odd train cars?"
A: "Those are called “wedge plows.” Pushed from behind by a locomotive to clear snow. The hydraulic “wings” on the side can be extended to increase the lateral amount of snow being cleared, depending on snow depth."
"Any idea why this ceramic bowl has a slot?"
A: "It looks like an egg separator"
"Found in the administration building of an old textile factory, circa 1950-60. Made from cast iron."
A: "It’s a gear cutting machine for clock or other small gears."
"Fork with bent tines on some kind of fob or whatnot. Found whilst cleaning out a house. Probably silver."
A: "This is a fork weight for a knitting machine. It’s exactly like the ones I have from my 1908 CSM."
"Metal Yurts? UFOs? What are these called?"
A: "These are Dymaxion Deployment Units"
"What is this bag designed for? it’s about a yard long and 2ft tall."
A: "It’s to carry logs"
"We bought this from a thrift shop in Ukraine, what is this thing?"
A: "The back seems to say Yuri Longo in Cyrillic, which is the name of a Russian stage magician. It’s most likely some type of “magic token” to sell to suckers."