WELCOME

Welcome. Glad to see you here in our world of strange fascinations. What do we find so strangely fascinating? Well, a lot of things, really. To sum it up...we're predisposed to the paranormal, attracted to the anachronistic, responsive to retro, passionate about pop culture, captivated by kitsch, orgasmic over the odd. This is our warehouse. Stay as long as you like. Scrawl something on the wall (we'd really like that). Just don't open that door over there behind the life size cardboard cut-out of Agent Dale Cooper. Why? Never mind. Just don't. Unless, of course, you've always wanted to be the subject of a "weird news" headline.

Velkommen. Glad for at se Dem her i vores verden på en mærkelig hensyn. Hvad ser vi så mærkeligt Fascinerende? Godt, en masse ting, virkelig. Til sidst det up...we »ad været tilbøjelig til at se, tiltrukket af det utidssvarende, lydhør over for refleksanordninger, lidenskabeligt om POP kultur, påtage ved kitsch, orgasmic over mærkeligt. Det er vores lager. Ophold så længe man vil. Scrawl noget på væggen (vi fortsat virkelig gerne høre).

OI! PSSST. HAVE YOU MET OUR MASCOT? DON'T MIND THE GOOGLY EYES.
Yeah, she's definitely creepy with that unsettling gaze trained on the camera courtesy of those big, googly eyes, but from the moment we saw her pallid mug in the musty pages of "Wisconsin Death Trip", Michael Lesy's 1972 cult classic compendium of death, disease, disaster and degradation in 1890s Black River, Wisconsin, we knew that this nameless vixen of yore would forever have a stranglehold on what passes for our heart. And, of course, she's perfect for this dark and shamelessly skewed blog. If we had the time and the focus, we'd have T-shirts made that said "I suck the life out of Cheeseheads, Go Packers!" But, luckily, we have adult ADD and will never do it. Including her eerie little face in our blog is the best we can do. We just hope that our readers appreciate our creepy little friend as much as we do. In fact, we feel a poll coming on...





CLOCKS ROCK! But...Aufpassen! We Will Not Be Responsible For Wasted Hours, Minutes, Or Intentions.
Oh, yeah....we have a theme song. Two, in fact. And a whole lot of back-up possibilities. (Videos are down below.)

Our Theme Song

A BLOG WITHOUT MUSIC IS LIKE A DAY WITHOUT BEER. IT CAN BE DONE, BUT WHY WOULD YOU WANT TO? WE HOPE THAT YOU'LL ENJOY OUR RECOMMENDED SELECTIONS.

Enhance Your Viewing Pleasure

Amazon MP3 Clips

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COMING SOON! LISSA D'S "FLICKS FOR CHICKS" MOVIE PICKS AND RANDOM MUSINGS

COMING SOON! LISSA D'S "FLICKS FOR CHICKS" MOVIE PICKS AND RANDOM MUSINGS
NEXT POST: LISSA EXPLAINS WHY SHE THINKS THAT "KILL BILL" IS A NECESSARY CINEMATIC THRILL.

How To Make A Pink Squirrel

How To Make A Pink Squirrel
Why wait? Get in the pink. Click on the rodent for the recipe for a classic Pink Squirrel cocktail..

Saturday, February 25, 2012

A TRIBUTE TO OSCAR




  Yes, Soulmates, it's that time of year again. Tomorrow night will mark the 84th annual presentation of the Academy Awards, aka "The Oscars", on which occasion the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences (AMPAS) will hand out those little gold statuettes to members of the Hollywood community deemed worthy of recognition for their various contributions to the movie industry. Banal teleprompter banter and cheesy production numbers aside, the Academy Awards are, in my opinion, an important reference point in American culture, and, I will be watching tomorrow night, as I have every night since 1972, trying my best not to fall asleep before the final award, for "Best Picture", is announced and the glamour gives way to a station break followed by the local news.
   Who do I think will win this year? Well, although I'm nowhere near as certain as I was last year, when I predicted multiple awards for "The King's Speech", I do have a feeling that "The Artist" will shine tomorrow night, and that George Clooney will finally receive some long overdue recognition for his understated and always solid acting in "The Descendents." I also think that "The Help" will be recognized in substantial measure by the Academy. And I will be looking for Sacha Baron Cohen to make some kind of statement by appearing in his "General Aladeen" costume from "The Dictator". Nothing spices up an Academy Awards show like a little calculated renegade behavior. The glamour of "The Oscars" has always been interspersed with faux pas moments and outrageous statements from self-serving actors eager to utilize that white hot spotlight. From Marlon Brando's infamous no-show on behalf of what he considered to be the movie industry's unfair treatment of Native Americans. to David Niven's suave segue following the sudden appearance of a streaker on stage to Bjork's red carpet swan song. That's what makes them fun. That's why we watch them. And in honor of that aspect of what is without argument one of the movie industry's greatest contributions to pop culture, I present my three favourite notable Academy Awards moments for your pleasure and edification.

                                                                 The 1973 Academy Awards
                                                              "Accepting the award for Mr. Brando is..."
                                                     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2QUacU0I4yU


 The 1974 Academy Awards
"Showing us his shortcomings"



                                                              The 1999 Academy Awards
                                                                     "I love everybody!"
                                                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cTR6fk8frs

    That's it for this post. Until next time...xoxoxoxxoxoxoxo
                                                            

Thursday, February 23, 2012

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: Forget Pink Elephants, Bring On The Squirrels

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: Forget Pink Elephants, Bring On The Squirrels: Just for the record, Soulmates, I was going to write about disgusting retro recipes this post, recipes that, for the most part, and for ...

Forget Pink Elephants, Bring On The Squirrels

    Just for the record, Soulmates, I was going to write about disgusting retro recipes this post, recipes that, for the most part, and for reasons known only to the denizens of the mid-20th century recipe makers, seem to include a preponderance of Jell-o and/or canned vegetables. But it being the week after Valentine's Day,  my thoughts are still on hearts, not heartburn. IN keeping with what has apparently become my personal tradition, Valentine's Day did not go particularly well again this year. While not quite as bad or as bloody as the infamous Valentine's Day Massacre, last Tuesday wasn't exactly Cupid's greatest moment, either. Hearts and flowers? Try hearts and duct tape. As in there ain't a roll of it big enough to cover the cracks in my battered ticker. But that's another story. You can probably find it on the Lifetime Movie Channel. In fact, most of the last few years of my life can probably be found there. At this point, I'm beginning to think that I should be receiving royalties.
     Which leads us to the actual topic of this post. Pink Squirrel cocktails. If you've never imbibed one of these frothy, pastel-colored, retro wonders in a glass, you're missing out on one of the best reasons to have been a barfly in the 50's and early 60's. One sip, and you're Lana Turner in a slinky black dress sitting on a barstool in the Boom Boom Room. If music is the food of love, pink squirrels are the salve of the lovelorn. To drink one is to be transported back to an age of gentlemen, glamour, and sultry saxophone music in darkened bars on dim-lit back streets in a film noir world. Two or more sips, and you're likely to start spouting lines from Raymond Chandler novels.
   "So, what's a nice girl like you doing out on the town all by yourself?"
  "Painting it red. I'm starting with pink and working my way up."
  "You have a boyfriend?"
  "No, just a hole where my heart used to be. Just as well. The beating sound was annoying me anyway. Now I can at least concentrate on my reading."
  "What are you reading?"
  "The Lorena Bobbitt Story."
    The problem with pink squirrels is that it's damned hard to find a bartender who can make a good one, or even one at all, unless you live in a place like New York City or some other teeming metropolis. You can try your luck, but chances are, the bartender will either not know how to make one, or the bar won't even have the right ingredients on hand. Face it, pink squirrels are a retro concoction, a drink of the past, a fading star on a stage crowded with tacky starlets with names like "Sex Bomb" and "Fuzzy Navel." But if you can get one, you'll be a better person for it. Or a more appreciative drinker, at any rate. Will the consumption of a Pink Squirrel take away your heartache? Doubtful. But look at it this way. If you're going to be sitting in a bar with a broken heart, you might as well look as classy in the midst of your despair.
   "You're a beautiful woman, you know that? What's your secret?"
   "Salt baths."
  "You take salt baths?"
  "No, I cry salt tears. See this pink squirrel? It's my chaser."

Well, that's it for this post, Soulmates. Don't be a stranger. And remember...if someone offers you food followed by the statement "I'm just going to throw it out anyway", just step aside and give them a clear shot at the trash can. You'll sleep better for it. Til next time. xoxoxxoxoxoxxo



Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Black Eyed People Are Coming

 No, we're not talking about a Black Eyed Peas concert slated for your city or town. We're talking about black-eyed people, as in men, women, and children whose eyes are seemingly entirely black, as in all pupil and no visible iris. I first read about them on the about.com paranormal site and was immediately and strangely fascinated by other readers' accounts of their encounters with these mysterious and apparently prolific beings who have allegedly been spotted in such disparate locations as the local Wal Mart and highway rest area bathrooms. In nearly all of the accounts, the sighting is accompanied by a sense of dread on the part of the "victim." "I felt as though I was going to die" is how many of them describe their reaction to the unexpected encounter. In the most unsettling accounts, the encounter is preceded by a strange, methodical knocking on the author's door or window, usually at some ungodly hour of the night. 
Such was the case in an account submitted by Jenna L., a resident of a small city in Michigan, who was reading quietly in bed around 11 o'clock one autumn night in 2009 when`she heard a sudden slow knocking on her front door, got up and went to answer it. Upon opening the door, Jenna wrote, "I saw two young boys, about  nine or ten, both dark-haired, dressed in jeans and hooded sweatshirts and sneakers. I was wondering what two boys that age were doing out by themselves at that hour of the night when I noticed their eyes. They were completely black. I felt this sudden sense of dread, as though I was in danger. The taller one simply looked at me and said, 'Please let us in.' I asked them why they wanted to come in. He said. 'We need to use the phone." When I asked who they needed to call, he replied, "Just let us in. Please. We won't hurt you.' It was a strange thing for a boy that age to say. And he spoke in such a quiet, calm, almost adult cadence of voice. I don't know what came over me, but I just said, 'Sorry. I can't let you in.' and shut the door. I made sure it was locked. But no sooner was I back in bed, then I heard the knocking again. I got up and went into the living room where I could see the front door from the window. 
 
    The two boys were standing in exactly the same spot, the taller one in front, the smaller one directly behind him with his head down. Then, almost on cue, they both turned their heads and looked in the direction of the window. I felt that sense of dread again, more acutely this time, and hurried back to my bedroom. They knocked for several more minutes, then they stopped and, I assumed, went away. But it really frightened me in a way that is difficult to explain. I felt as though my very life was in danger. If I had let them in, I honestly believe that I would have been harmed in some way, or might possibly even have died." 
    Jenna's account of her encounter with black-eyed kids is frightening enough, but the one that really made my skin crawl came from "Carl S", whose encounter took place in, of all places, a Wal-Mart. According to Carl, he and his wife were heading down the electronics aisle of the store when they noticed "a very thin, dark-haired woman dressed in a white T-shirt and shorts" coming toward them. As she got closer, Carl recalled, "she looked directly at us and that was when I realized that her eyes were totally black. No iris color at all, just black, and very large. As she passed us, I felt very strange and uncomfortable. A weird sense of dread that came over me. I'm not a guy who spooks easily.  I'm 6'"2 and, at that time, a over 200 lbs. I've had martial arts training. But I was freaked out by this woman. So was my wife,. She told me later that she had the strange feeling that the woman wanted to hurt us. There was no reason for her to think that, but she did. We both turned and looked at her as she passed us, and she was looking back at us. The really freaky part was that, as we were coming out of the store about half an hour later, we saw the woman again. She was standing in the parking lot, next to the shopping cart corral, where our car was parked a few feet away. She didn't say anything as we passed her, just stared. We couldn't get out of there fast enough."
   So, who are these black-eyed people walking among us in Wal-Marts and knocking on our doors late at night? Google the subject and you'll find many stories of encounters similar to the one above. But apart from describing their fear on seeing these disconcerting strangers, none of the witnesses seem able to offer an explanation for the strange encounters. One woman posited that the black-eyed people could be "demons from another dimension", but if they are, what do they want from the Jenna L's and Carl S's of the world? So far, no one seems to have actually come to harm at their hands. The black-eyed boy in Jenna L's seems to have stepped full-blown out of a vampire movie with his insistence that she let him into the house. We all know that vampires have to ask to enter a house before they can come in and sink their pointed teeth into our necks. But if the black-eyed people are vampires, why are they walking around Wal-Marts in the middle of the day? It's a question pondered in many a paranormal chat room.
   Of course, it goes without saying that at least a good portion of these accounts are probably pure fiction. But too many of them have a genuine ring of truth, their details too singular and nuanced to be dismissed as the creations of bored pranksters. In my all-time favorite account, which can be found here, the author had his encounter when he stopped for dinner at a roadside diner late one night. Captivated by the charms of his waitress, he made a point of trying to speak to her before he left the establishment. Following her into a back room (a pretty bold move, in any case), he discovered her standing in the middle of the floor, screaming, her arms at her sides. On seeing him, he claimed, she began to zip across the floor without moving her feet, still screaming. Understandably freaked out, he made a quick getaway, jumped into his car and drove off, only to catch a glimpse of her face in the rear view mirror, her mouth still opened wide in a scream. Of course, turning around to look, he saw nothing. Not surprisingly, he never went back for her number.
   Accounts of black-eyed people continue to pour into paranormal websites from all over the world, and I continue to read them with a combination of fascination and inexplicable fear. It's the same way I feel about snakes. I'm terrified of them, but whenever I see one, I can't seem to look away. If nothing else, it's one more reason to avoid shopping at Wal-Mart. Fortunately, as far as I know, no one's ever spotted a black-eyed person at a Target.
 



Tuesday, February 7, 2012

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: Paranormal Post

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: Paranormal Post: This week, we find ourselves strangely fascinated by some old school paranormal cases So, give that fire another poke, pour another bran...

Paranormal Post

   This week, we find ourselves strangely fascinated by some old school paranormal cases  So, give that fire another poke, pour another brandy and settle down. Ready? Let's go.


     First off is the dubious, but nonetheless interesting case of Gef, the Talking Mongoose. If you've read a lot of paranormal literature, you're probably familiar with the story ol' Gef  (also known as The Dalby Spook), a supposed mongoose (what else?) who allegedly lived in the walls of a farmhouse owned by a family called Irving on the Isle of Man in the 1930's. If you don't haunt the paranormal book shelves, you may find yourself strangely fascinated by this well-known and fairly well-documented case just the same.
    It all started when members of the Irving family spotted what appeared to be a strange, vaguely weasel-like creature in their garden in the spring of '31. It was described as "yellow in color" with a "bushy tail" and "flat nose." James Irving, the patriarch of the family, expressed surprise at the time that the animal's appearance in the garden did not alarm the chickens. Within a  few days, the Irvings saw it in the house as well, and shortly thereafter became aware of odd scratching sounds and muffled grunts within the walls. In a matter of only a few days, the entity developed an actual voice, with which it began to repeat nursery rhymes and, after another brief interval, actually converse with the family. Its voice was described as being high and screechy, yet clear, and a few degrees higher in pitch than a human's.
   New reports at the time suggest that the real voice behind Gef was the family's 13-year-old daughter, who one reporter claimed to see covering her lips as the unseen Gef was answering reporters' questions. However, despite such claims, no one could say for certain whether the girl was in fact engaging in trickery. The situation was made even more mysterious when Gef occasionally showed his dark side, hurling stones at family members as they walked to and from the house and shouting invectives if they took too long to bring him food in exchange for the dead rabbits he left for them on the doorstep. Mrs. Irving told reporters that she had at one point stroked Gef's fur through a crack in the wall, only to be bitten in return and then told by Gef to "go and put ointment on (the bite)."
   None other than Harry Price, president of the British Society for Psychical Research at the time, visited the Irving farm in 1935 to try to get to the bottom of the mongoose mystery. Unfortunately, Gef declined to make an appearance during Price's visit and impressions of pawprints taken from the property and sent away for analysis could not be identified.
    So, was Gef a real talking mongoose, a spirit, or simply the product of a young girl's perfidy? We'll never know, of course. When asked about his origins, Gef replied that he had been born in New Delhi, India and that he was "a little clever, extra clever mongoose", but never explained how he had come to live inside the walls of the Irvings' farmhouse. No one who knew the Irvings personally seemed to think that they were capable of playing a hoax and no member of the family ever confessed that they had done so. Still, it is telling that the subsequent owner of the house claimed not to have ever heard so much as a single word from Gef. For all practical purposes, the strangely fascinating case of Gef, the Talking Mongoose ended when the Irvings sold their farm.



    Another case involving Harry Price centered on the infamous Borley Rectory, known as the "Most Haunted House in England" during the 1920s and 30s. Built on the site of an old Benedictine monastery, the house was first occupied by a Rev. Bull and his family until the death of Rev. Bull in 1892, at which time it passed to his father and then to a Rev. Smith. But it was in the 30s, during the five-year tenancy of Rev. L.A. Foyster and his wife, Marianne, that all hell broke loose.
   During the 1890s, there had been reports of a ghostly nun who allegedly traipsed through the drafty halls of the rectory, but the Foysters' arrival seemed to prompt an onslaught of paranormal activity which included stones and pebbled being hurled at them from an unknown source, random coins appearing out of nowhere, and strange scribblings on the walls addressed to Marianne, the most notable of which stated, "I am crazy. Help me, Marianne." Unexplained footsteps and phantom knocks also plagued the Foysters, sending the apparently delicate-nerved Marianne into a tailspin that eventually led to the Foysters' departure from the problematic scene.
    As seems to have been par for the course when it came to many of his investigations for the SPR, Price's stay at the rectory failed to turn up any definitive or conclusive evidence pointing to the source of the alleged haunting. Once again, the world was left to ponder the question of whether the haunting of Borley Rectory was real, imagined, or fraudulent. Unfortunately, the rectory burned to the ground in the 1940s, leaving the question not only extant, but forever unanswerable.


    Our last case has a musical component. In fact, it was all about the music when it came to English pianist Rosemary Brown and her alleged dealings with spirits. The classically trained Brown claimed that throughout her career, she had been aided in composing piano music by the spirits of such deceased classical music luminaries as Franz Lizst, Ludwig von Beethoven and Frederic Chopin. Critics, of course, scoffed at her claims and insisted that the songs composed by Brown were not in the same league as the music made by Beethoven and his ilk when alive.
    But Brown held firm in her claims, even sharing a very amusing anecdote in which the spirit of Beethoven, trying to impart musical knowledge, was continually interrupted by the ringing of the doorbell. Finally, exasperated, Brown said, the spirit put a hand to his head and exclaimed, "Mein Gott!"
   Brown's own version of her story can be found in a series of memoirs, the best of which, Immortals By My Side, was published in 1974 and is still in print. Brown passed into spirit herself in 2001. No word on what the immortals had to say about how well she did their work for them when alive.
 
   Welll, that's all for now, gentle readers. We hope to make another foray into the world of the unknown soon, and in the meantime, remember....when the world gets too mundane, don't get bored, just turn and face the strange. Til next time. xoxoxxoxoxoxoxxox









Thursday, December 29, 2011

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: More Creepy Mannequins

THESE STRANGE FASCINATIONS.: More Creepy Mannequins: Here they are....more creepy Christmas mannequins. View at your own risk. The family that looks creepy together.... Don't let ...