Category Archives: Paranormal

This is where you freak out about stuff you saw, or voices you heard, or about the Chakras in your crotch and what not.

Dogs That Defied the Laws of Science

Dogs That Defied the Laws of Science

OR “How I learned to stop worrying and love the dog”

by The Late Mitchell Warren

Sponsored by the book “Raining Cats & Dogs“, by Mitchell Warren

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Dogs of science remains an uncomfortable subject today, given our new standards of elevating canines to the deserving status of human beings, all the while we disregard anything that doesn’t have a snout and floppy ears. It’s time we accept our shame and admit we as the human species haven’t always been kind to dogs, but that our experiments on them have been fascinating. Even more fascinating are the science that dogs give to us without explanation-anomalies of nature that defy our conventional wisdom of what dogs should be.  In this list of 13 dogs – dogs of science, dogs of sci-fi, and dogs of horror – we seek to prove only one point: that Dogs are truly Science’s Best Friend too.

1. Xinxiang the Runaway Pig Dog

Xinxiang the Runaway Pig Dog
How do you say hory sheeet in Mandarin?

It takes a lot to make stoic China flinch these days, but Xinxiang, a pedigree breed Chinese hairless dog did just that, earning a reputation as a pig-dog mutant that must have surely escaped from a laboratory. Xinxiang is the only dog on our list credited to “natural dog science”. But China residents were spooked when this pink, hairless dog sporting a Mohawk and leopard-like spots showed up around Xinxiang City—and it just so happened there was a nearby scientific research center.

First gut reaction? Why of course, it’s an escaped genetic experiment gone horribly wrong, and the next step is surely a Chinese mutant pig-men military culminating in World War III. Actually, there are many “Xinxiangs” around the world, and they were originally bred to be a disabled person’s companion. Chinese Crested dogs are also not originally from China but believed to come from either Africa or Mexico; it was only when being taken to China that they were intentionally bred to be smaller in size.

Ironically, Xinxiang, the runaway Pig Dog, was an oddity. Most Chinese Crested dogs are introverted and are not known for gregarious behavior. And before you assume Xinxiang can travel across continents thus explaining her dozens of appearances worldwide, don’t be alarmed. Chinese Crested dogs pop up unexpectedly all over the place. One named Yoda won the 2011 World’s Ugliest Dog contest over at the Sonoma Marin Fair. Before Yoda’s rise to stardom, he lived on the street and was thought to be a giant rat.

2. Pavlov’s Drooling Dogs

Pavlovs Dogs
We’re the ones that salivated. What the hell did Pavlov do?!

Russian physiologist Ivan Pavlov was certainly perplexed by his furry friends’ abilities, and this ultimately led him to work at the physiological department of the Veterinary Institute in St. Petersburg. While studying dog digestion, Pavlov became quite fascinated with doggy drool, which as we all know, they love to share with their human friends.

He noticed his subjects would start to salivate more whenever an assistant entered into the office. The team began measuring saliva production based on a number of foods and non-edible items. Saliva is a reflexive process, involuntary and a reaction to specific stimulus. Pavlov figured out that a dog’s drooling could result from the sight of the research assistants’ white lab coats, not merely hunger, since the dogs had learn to associate the sight with dinnertime. Salivating to the expectation of food was a breakthrough, because it led us to the theory of mental conditioning. Pavlov manipulated his dogs further by associating the sound of a metronome with feeding, and the results were the same: whenever the sound occurred, the dogs drooled in anticipation.

The case was a landmark achievement in the study of science and psychology, and actually challenged what we knew then about the power of the human and animal mind. The theory of conditioning remains important to today’s understanding of behavioral modification, mental health treatment, and manipulative boyfriends and girlfriends that always get what they want. In case you’re wondering about the names of the dogs who changed the laws of psychology, they’re all hard to pronounce and in Russian, having names like Krasavietz, Novichok and Zloday. No wonder only the name “Pavlov” stuck.

3. Laika the Space Dog

Laika the Space Dog
Laika’s famous parting words were: “Oh gee, I’m really screwed, aren’t I?”

In America, you look down on your dog…in Soviet Russia, dog looks down on you! Literally, it seemed, as Laika was the first dog in space. Laika was once a female stray from Moscow, before being selected as the passenger of the Soviet spacecraft Sputnik 2, launched on November 3, 1957. Russian astronomers chose three-year old Laika because of her apparent ability to endure harsh conditions, including cold and starvation.

Laika’s breed was never confirmed, but she generally looked like a mix between a terrier, husky and possibly a Nordic breed. Her personality was said to be quiet and non-quarrelsome in comparison to other dogs. To prepare her for the ultimate dog science-defying leap around the world, she was housed in progressively smaller cages and then eventually released into orbit to serve as the first dog astronaut and a precursor to later human missions. While it would have been nice to report Laika landed safely and enjoyed a Buzz Aldrin-like legend, the truth is much more Old Yeller than Lassie.

It was long believed that she either died on day six from a lack of oxygen, or that she was euthanized via poison food capsule. She died from overheating, as details of her mission were released only as recently as 2002. Animal rights activists in 1957 expressed their outrage. National Canine Defence League of the U.K. called on all dog owners to observe a minute’s silence, and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) received numerous protests.

Even one of the scientists responsible for sending Laika into dead space eventually recanted for the decision after the fall of the Soviet Union. And before you think a guy like Vladimir Putin to be cold and unsympathetic, know that in 2008 Russian officials erected a monument to Laika in Moscow, featuring a statute of a dog standing on top of a rocket. Neil Armstrong’s dog would have been proud.

4. Mira the World’s First Cloned Pet Dog

Mira the clone dog
Stop saying all cloned dogs look alike, it’s racist!

We are not just near the age of cloning but are in the age of cloning, and genetic clones are already walking among us. The world’s first “Frankenstein pet”, Mira, looks like any other dog; she’s part Husky, part Border Collie, and part Rottweiler. She’s also the good old age of seven and a living clone of a real dog. She cost a bark-worthy figure of £12 million pounds to make and was the vision of our planet’s very own Dr. Frankenstein, Lou Hawthorne.

Hawthorne worked in cloning for twenty years and gave life to 20 other genetically engineered dogs. However, just as Dr. Frankenstein met his own dark fate, so too did Hawthorne—although admittedly he was not choked to death by his creation. His own sense of guilt forced him out of the industry. For every one cloned pet, it is estimated that a high number of real dogs are put down. Up to 80 different dogs are required to create the genetic parts of one clone, a huge number of dog orders. These numbers could only be filled by big dog farms, and in Asia, dogs are used as meat or simply put down.

Hawthorne told the press, “A cloned dog contributes to the happiness of a family but I do not think it is possible to do it without a huge amount of suffering to hundreds of others.” There have been approximately 200 cloned dogs brought into existence through modern science thus far and they all seem to be living rich, full lives. Human cloning is not doing very well, however, as only Alec Baldwin seems to get steady work among his litter.

5. Naki’o The Bionic Dog

Naiko the bionic dog
Drop it, creep! I meant the food, creep!

Whoever said cyborg beings had to be evil? Darth Vader and T-800 references notwithstanding, the first known bionic dog Naki’o, is surely not evil but definitely part machine. The mixed breed seemingly lost all hope, as he lost his paws because of frostbite. He was abandoned in a foreclosed Nebraska home and discovered alone in a puddle of icy water. Not only did he lose his four paws, but he also lost the tip of his tail, shortly before being rescued and taken to an animal rescue center.

Before the miracle of modern science, Naki’o was left with rounded stumps and couldn’t play well with other dogs, as it hurt to stand and he could only manage to crawl on his stomach. Luckily, this stray was adopted by veterinarian assistant Christie Pace of Colorado Springs, who came up with the idea of fitting him with four prosthetic limbs. They are not artificial stilts, but highly advanced prosthetics, created to mimic the muscle and bone of dog limbs, allowing the pup to do everything that comes natural.

Orthopets, the company that fitted Naki’o’s new paws, initially gave him two artificial back legs (made with mountain bike tire material), but was so impressed with Pace and Naki’o’s enthusiasm, they did his front legs too, and free of charge. Not quite RoboDog, but he is on record as being the first canine to be fitted with a full set of bionic paws. There is already talk of Naki’o being upgraded by a company called Omni Consumer Products (OCP) and turning Detroit into Delta City 2.0.

6. BigDog the Quadruped Robot

BigDog the Robot Quadruped
But the one thing I can’t do is love… :(

The nice thing about having a robot dog is having none of the mess to scoop up, although breeding is problematic and probably painful. BigDog is certainly not the world’s first robot dog—there were numerous primitive models here and there—but it is the world’s most amazing artificially created dog. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (D.A.R.P.A., although it would have been funnier if they were called B.A.R.K.) funded the creation of BigDog, hoping it could be used as a robot pack mule to accompany soldiers into difficult terrain.

BigDog moves like a dog, using four legs, giving it an advantage over military vehicles. However, BigDog is far too expensive to merely scratch himself and bark at the moon. This critter has 50 sensors built into his body, as well as a stereo vision system and laser gyroscope. The computer-controlled dog-bot has helped to reduce the physical load soldiers have to carry. The project head, Dr. Martin Buehler, wasn’t content to retire early with just one robot dog. He has developed several four-legged walking and running robots. BigDog might well be the best, as he is capable of walking on ice and even capable of getting back up after a sidekick. Proof of BigDog’s brilliant technology is the fact that the Transformers “Ravage” cat-bot is scared to death of him.

7. The Montauk Monster

Montauk monster
The Montauk Monster is a dog! Look, it just barked. {Arf} See?

The Montauk Monster has been called everything from a raccoon, to a sea turtle, to a genetic lab experiment, to a special effect latex puppet. The Montauk Monster was first spotted in Montauk, New York as it washed ashore a beach in 2008 looking downright alien.

Pictures of the beast that circulated online offer no light as to what the creature is, since it appears to have a deformed face and indistinguishable feet. However, many experts are starting to accept that it is not a hoax and that it’s probably canine. According to an analysis of the creature, its legs are too long to be a raccoon, and it clearly does have fur, eliminating the possibilities of turtles, and sharp teeth, eliminating the suspect of sheep.

Regarding the possibility that the Monster is a giant rat (not any less creepy, guys!) is the fact that the beast does not have two large and curved incisor teeth in the front like rodents do. That leaves a dog as the most likely explanation, albeit a poor canine soul that decomposed in water for months or years on end. Disease may have also played a part in disfiguring the animal, as William Wise, director of Stony Brook University’s Living Marine Resources Institute, told the press. The legend of Montauk’s mutant dog will only grow as the carcass has been mysteriously misplaced and lost. But Giorgio A. Tsoukalos is fairly sure it’s aliens. (Dramatic Gesture)

8. Texas Blue Dogs

Texas Blue Dogs
Like most Texans, he just drinks and smokes too much is all.

As if Texas didn’t have enough problem with Big Flying Birds and haunted hotels, there is also the legend of “Blue Dog”, which has merited comparisons to the mythical el chupacabra legend—a vampiric beast that feasts upon blood from livestock. The Blue Dog of Texas certainly did not look like a typical dog, given that it was hairless and had bluish skin. One eyewitness, Phylis Canion, claimed about the time she noticed the beast that some of her chickens were found dead and apparently drained of blood.

She did what any YouTube conscious citizen would have done next—make a video of the sight. On July 2007, another one was found and sure enough it looked bizarre. The dead animal’s body had unusually large ears, fanged teeth, and an almost elephant-like tint in the skin. Scientists heard of her story and decided to test the supposed chupacabra’s DNA but later found that it was not undead, and most certainly a member of Canidae. A coyote or Canis latrans, to be exact, a relative of the common dog.

It gets more peculiar, as a second DNA test revealed the Blue Dog resulted from a coyote mother getting kinky with a Mexican wolf father. Furthermore, the blue skin was most likely caused by a mite-related skin disease called sarcoptic mange. Nevertheless, Phylis Canion had the hybrid animal taxidermied and now proudly displays the closest thing we have ever found to resembling a chupacabra in her home. Of course, why you’d actually a want a vampire-esque beast inside your home scaring you every time you walk into the living room is anyone’s guess.

9. Dead Zone Dogs

Fukushima mutant dogs
Teenage mutant ninja puppies, Teenage mutant ninja puppies…

If you’ve ever played video games like Fallout thenthe idea of radiation-affected mutant dogs might seem too silly an idea to be scary. However, there’s nothing fictional or funny about the reality of the Fukushima nuclear accident—and the dogs it has affected.

Scientists have speculated that the next generation of puppies living around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster zone are in living mutants dogs—and most likely vicious ones at that. Japanese officials are taking the threat seriously and are capturing hundreds of wild radiation-crazed dogs still living in the Fukushima no-entry zone, but are not succeeding in capturing the entire population. The dogs are reportedly becoming more antisocial and wild, as they do not interact with humans in the fallout zone. Furthermore, if the nuclear-affected dogs have their own puppies, they will be one more generation removed from civilized dogs—wild canines with no experience around people whatsoever.

The “dead zone dogs”, as they are nicknamed, are not responding to usual baited cage traps. Worse yet, as Kawasaki veterinarian Kunitoshi Baba states, “If infected dogs go outside the zone and attack people, disease could spread.” Photos of mutated animals from Fukushima have been spotted online, and one can only wonder and shudder at what a race of mutant dogs might look like in the real world. Probably not as horrific as this fellow.

10. Hitler’s Talking Dogs

Hitlers Talking Dog
How adorable, his first words were “Final Solution”!

Say what you will about Hitler’s anti-social tendencies, the man clearly loved science…and dogs. Which brings us to the most bizarre case of misplaced animal love we’ve heard all day—talking dogs sponsored by the Nazis. Dr. Jan Bondeson of Cardiff University School of Medicine in Wales wrote a book on the Nazis’ ambitious dog experiment, and revealed that Hitler supported a German school that taught mastiff breeds to effectively talk to humans. According to reports, they did manage to train the dogs to learn a few words, mainly replying to questions like “Who is Adolf Hitler?” with “Mein Fuhrer!”

Speculation on why this was so important to Hitler revealed possible conspiracies to develop super-intelligent canine storm troopers, capable of communicating with soldiers. There was even talk of an “intellectual” Airedale terrier named Rolf who supposedly learned the alphabet, which he related with a series of paw-taps on a board, as well as other subjects. Beyond their plans for super intelligent evil dogs, the Nazis just happened to love dogs in general. Hitler himself owned two German shepherds (are you surprised?) named Bella and Blondi. Another rumor from The Guardian reported that the Nazis learned of a rebellious Finland dog owner who trained his dog to parody Hitler’s ultra-serious salute—which only incurred the wrath of the Third Reich, and provoked them into unsuccessfully hunting down the first ever canine comedian and his owner.

11. Phantom Black Dogs

phantom black dogs
OMG! It’s like a huge dog with red eyes! Like Foofur but evil!

Phantom black dogs have been man’s best departed friend for hundreds of years, with sightings going back before the 1500s. The Black Shuck, as some accounts called it, was a dog with “fiery, saucer-shaped eyes” and one that appeared as an omen right before one’s own death. Multiple sightings are reported of phantom black dogs even now, as far as England, Scotland, Ireland, Mainland Europe and even into Latin America.

Viewers who see the dogs claim the creature is much larger than a normal dog, approximately the size of a cow by some accounts, and also has devilish or Hellhound-like glowing eyes. The most common areas where phantom dogs are reported include electrical storms, ancient sites, and the execution sites of prisoners. In books such as Explore Folklore, Explore Mythology, Explore Green Men, and Explore Shamanism, and Real Monsters, Gruesome Critters, and Beasts from the Darkside, eyewitness accounts are collected from the 1800s all the way to the present day, including small England villages like Ranton, Staffordshire, and the Cannock Chase forest in England, where sightings are still regularly reported.

Ironically, local urban myths of phantom cats are also coming out of Northern Ireland, Suffolk and London, which a skeptic will note, coincides with the “1976 Dangerous Wild Animals Act” in the U.K., which undoubtedly led to many pet owners releasing their exotic animal collection into the wild. One popular explanation of phantom dogs and cats is simply exotic breeds mating with domestic breeds, or long lost exotic and larger than average “pets” coming out of seclusion and roaming free. After all, everything looks bigger and creepier in the night. Interesting factoid: TV’s 1980s icon Foofur was based on artist renderings of phantom dogs. However, his eyes were black, not red, at least when he finally sobered up.

 

 

Foofur
Artist’s rendition of a typical phantom dog. Notice the big size, rainy night and evil implications.

 

12. Demikhov’s Two-Headed Dog

Demikhovs Two-Headed Dogs
Because we’re Soviets, that’s why! Blaaa blaaa!

There is something unsettling about the idea or the visual of a two-headed dog, and that’s probably because of Cerberus, the Hellhound with three heads. Or maybe it’s because actually witnessing a living, breathing two-headed dog is a perversion of nature. Of course, that’s not nearly as disturbing as witnessing a perversion of science, like Soviet scientist Vladimir Demikhov’s two-headed dog.

Demikhov successfully grafted the head and forelegs of a smaller dog onto a larger dog. The smaller dog was named Shavka, and the larger dog Brodyaga. Both heads were responsive and moved independently of each other. The operation was a success for at least four days until the dogs died.

The experiment was repeated 24 times and photos were taken to prove its success. However, Demikhov did more than merely experiment. He also pioneered organ transplant theory, was also involved in lung and heart replacements in animals, and served as an army pathologist in World War II. Despite censure for unethical animal treatment in the 1950s, which resulted in a halt of all his experiments, he was later awarded an Order of Merit for the Fatherland prize and a USSR State Prize for his contributions to legitimate animal and surgical science. He also coined the phrase “two heads are better than one…” Well, not literally…but maybe he said something similar in Russian.

13. The Russian Zombie Dog

Russian Zombie-Dog
We were doing video dog snuff before it was cool. In Soviet Russian, YOLO means Young Octobrists Live Once.

Perhaps the only kind thing you can say about the Nazis is that they really loved their dogs in comparison to the Soviet Union, who conducted all sorts of radical and cruel dog science experiments. The first zombie dog was created by Dr. Sergei Bryukhonenko, who successfully revived a dead dog, using a heart-lung machine called an autojector.

The scientist was able to pump the dog’s head back into operation, in essence returning it to life. To prove that the dog was actually aware of being alive, and not merely mechanically operating, the scientists provoked it into action and the dog head was shown—on video—licking a q-tip. A severed dog heart was also shown on video being kept alive through machinery. This happened prior to 1928 when video was officially released at the Third Congress of Physiologists of the USSR. It’s just a good thing they didn’t reanimate a Chihuahua, as once those little things get started they never shut up! We congratulate our brave Soviet dog subjects of year’s passed.

 

  1. http://dogtime.com/dog-breeds/chinese-crested#history
  2. http://psychology.about.com/od/classicalconditioning/a/pavlovs-dogs.htm
  3. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laika
  4. http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/cloned-dogs-scientist-lou-hawthorne-3402419
  5. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2315616/The-bionic-dog-Mixed-breed-Nakio-lost-paws-frostbite-finally-walk-fitted-prosthetic-limbs.html
  6. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BigDog
  7. http://web.archive.org/web/20080812043524/http://www.newsday.com/news/local/suffolk/ny-lijoye0731,0,7880502.column?page=2
  8. http://news.discovery.com/animals/mysterious-blue-dog-in-texas-claimed-to-be-chupacabra-130829.htm
  9. http://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/2013/12/30/issues/in-fukushima-abandoned-pets-are-multiplying/#.VA5r4KOunHY
  10. http://www.naturalnews.com/033644_Fukushima_mutants.html
  11. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/13/opinion/13dowd.html#h
  12. http://sf-fantasy.suvudu.com/2014/08/monster-dogs-of-myth-and-legend.html
  13. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_dog_%28ghost%29
  14. http://mysteriousuniverse.org/2014/02/a-monster-that-endures/
  15. http://www.jfr.indiana.edu/review.php?id=257
  16. http://books.google.com/books?id=-nMYIB8JhxoC&pg=PA42&lpg=PA42&dq=phantom+black+dogs+accounts&source=bl&ots=&sig=RxtAefctdmxW3EGoXrCbduBqlW4&hl=en&sa=X&ei=dGgOVMDGPIbOggTIzoL4DA&ved=0CEYQ6AEwBTgK#v=onepage&q=phantom%20black%20dogs%20accounts&f=false
  17. http://www.urbanghostsmedia.com/2013/10/spectral-dogs-phantom-big-cats-uk-reality-myth/
  18. http://motherboard.vice.com/blog/soviet-scientists-made-this-two-headed-dog
  19. http://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2012/10/mad-scientists-of-the-modern-age-vladimir-demikhov.html
  20. http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/501215-extremely-disturbing-soviet-zombie-experiments-reanimating-dead-animals/

 

The Year in Meh.

new year 2014By: Grainne Rhuad

 

I’m meant to be writing, I’ve been meaning to write a wrap up of the year for the last couple of weeks.  Then, like the rest of the world I get side tracked by things like how frustrated I am that U-verse is a “thing” and it fucked up my wireless connection and I can’t look things up at the same time as I write.

These are modern problems.  In fact they are bourgeois problems. A lot of people all over the world including other writers don’t care if their internet access is next to a wall in a corner of a room on a cut down barstool.  Jack Kerouac wrote “On the Road” in a van full of junkies.  Yet, I find myself letting my minor problems get in the way of what I claim I want to do.

Which has me thinking; I do this a lot.  I just moved to a new community.  It was a long distance move; at least for me.  I had grown up in the community I left and really I was more than ready to move but it was going to be a huge undertaking. I knew this.  I counted on all kinds of things.  I even in the back of my head counted on the cats we were also relocating not being groovy with being in boxes with handles.  In the back of my mind I knew not feeding or watering them for 12 hours probably wouldn’t do a lot towards keeping them…shall we say, dry; which is why I put them in the moving vehicle I wasn’t in.  See, I planned.

What I didn’t plan for was how disconnected I would get from the ‘World at Large’ during this time.  I found myself just not giving two shits about what was going on in the world, people’s troubles, Christmas woes or wars or whatever, news and all that.  I really really liked being down and disconnected and not having to think.  Does that make me one of the mindless masses?  Maybe, but I don’t think so.

I am thinking that we all need some disconnect.   A retreat, some time away, a Walden Pond, whatsoever you want to call it.  I took it in the form of nesting in a new home.  Almost like a ready to deliver pregnant woman I rushed about worrying not about Palestine but about the draft through the front door of my 100 year old house.  I didn’t feel bad about it at all.  I stopped several times to scan my thoughts. “Do I feel bad?” ….”Nope.”

Because here’s the thing; we are all of us living in different worlds and in different situations and yeah the crack in my door is an easy fix, Palestine less so, but I have to fix what is in front of me.

Please understand I get that my crack in the door is small, very small problems indeed.  It is an example, I’m not going to ramble the bigger problems of my life, and they would either bore or enrage you anyway.

This year as I do look back at it has been filled with people spewing their own problems and thoughts that in a reasonable world would have nothing to do with anyone else all over the interwebs and news outlets.  People are accordingly shocked, stunned, angered, disgusted, enraged and caught up in the group rage about things that really don’t matter.

I have mostly felt-Meh. This has been the year in Meh.  I sit and wait for real things to bubble to the top.   Items of interest that inspire or newsishness that invigorates the masses towards do-ing.  But it hasn’t happened.  Who the fuck cares that Miley Cyrus is acting like a normal American teen? Wait. This actually did invigorate me for a minute because of Pussy Riot. Let me just point out that Pussy Riot, the Punk Rock band from Russia that everyone who is anyone got behind for free publicity also participated in Miley-like behavior.  One of the members, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, fucked her fellow art class student at a public biology exhibit, (NSFW video)  fully nude, fully fucking, fully pregnant.  So shut the fuck up Sinead O’Connor.  Really, it’s a matter of who looks cooler even for activists.

Are we surprised that Japan isn’t doing what’s best for the world at Fukushima?  Why should they?  They were bombed by the Allied (American) forces. Atheists and Christians are at each other’s throats?  Snore fest!  They always are.  Who cares?

Let’s blame it on the increasing legalization of Marijuana.  I do not care what anyone says, pot slows you down, mellows you out, which sure is likely a good thing sometimes but really you are going to find people caring more about keeping their drug of choice coming than most anything else.

But onwards here are some things that did stand out to me this year, in no particular order:

Image found @ wildhunt.org
Image found @ wildhunt.org

Homelessness

This has been on my mind all year.  I recently moved from the Northern California college town of Chico.  It’s a pretty nice place to live, raise a family have a life.  It has been, probably since its inception.  It’s located in the breadbasket of Northern California affording it access to good cheap produce, small farm raised meats and dairy products and olives and wine galore.   Many, many people who come up for college end up staying or returning when they want to set in roots and this has been a good thing, mostly.

Until recently when somebody(s) without a soul decided there was a problem with homeless people and began instituting or trying to, inhumane and illegal laws around vagrancy and loitering.

Like everywhere the area has seen a rise in homelessness, it’s a sign of the times, a harvest of our investment in people in this country.  The homeless you find in Chico will vary from admitted life-long homeless people by choice to returned veterans from every conflict since Vietnam, the mentally ill, the un and underemployed, children, families, single people, people who actually serve you at your local fast food trough, then have no home to go to afterwards.

The problem as I see it began when a very small minority of downtown business owners decided that they didn’t like hosing off their store fronts or waking people up and began a campaign to make people feel unsafe downtown.  This came in the form of complaining to their own customers, family members, church congregations, newspapers, radio, etc.  Fear, as we know works and it spread.  Where never before had I heard anyone feeling afraid to shop downtown, nearly overnight it became a public blight, people couldn’t shop downtown and were “afraid” of shady people.

Let me clarify, there is really nothing scary about downtown Chico in the daytime certainly and I’m not afraid there at night either.  But a letter writing campaign had begun, mothers were all of a sudden afraid to take their kids shopping.

This was compounded by new City management from out of the area and when I left laws were being made prohibiting people from sitting anywhere downtown that was not a park.  The downtown business association was hiring out of the area security to enforce laws.  It bears pointing out that this security while not having the authority to arrest did somehow have the authority to bear arms and threaten and was made up of mostly very young people who aren’t known for their experience with conflict management and patience.  Things are bound to get scarier with eighteen year olds with guns pushing people sitting on sidewalks around.

Where I moved, on the northern California coast there is also a “homeless problem” this one has a slightly longer history and is not entirely due to recently economic displacement.  There are homeless people everywhere here, in every sort of neighborhood and somehow there isn’t the level of fear that is being sold in areas like Chico where homelessness is newly blooming.  Yes there are problems, people die from the elements, each other, themselves, but the fear mongering, I haven’t felt it yet.  The hopelessness at being able to fix this problem I do feel and hear about and see.  This is something the entire nation is feeling and a “move along” attitude is not going to fix it.

Image found @ 360experiment.org
Image found @ 360experiment.org

Unemployment Benefits End

Another thing that isn’t going to fix it is ending unemployment benefits for Millions of Americans. The emergency unemployment act that was keeping more than a Million Americans from joining the homeless ranks ended last Saturday (Dec 28, 2013).  This no doubt will be the big fight at Capitol Hill that all lobbyist and politicians will use to further their own interests in the coming year.  While they do more people will lose their homes and families and lives while those of us lucky enough become more afraid of people who until recently were our neighbors.  As I write this I am seeing visions of John Carpenter’s ‘They Live’ shanty towns in my head.  They have already been popping up around the country and depending where you are, you may even notice them by the nice barbed wire that your town has voted to enclose them in.

It’s one thing to believe that we cannot support every human being that has no employment; it’s another all together to villianize people who cannot possibly make a working wage even if they do work.  I’m looking at you Wal-Mart.

For those of you who have never been on unemployment or are outside of the U.S. unemployment generally pays 60% of what you made when you were let go, fired, downsized, etc. from your work.  So in the example of an average person who worked above minimum wage at say, some manufacturing plant or another; this is about $1600/month.  The average suburban one bedroom apartment rental in the U.S. in $800-1200/ month.  That doesn’t leave a lot to cover all the rest.  Don’t forget most of these people have children who cannot work dependant on them.

But, people don’t seem to care.  In the case of the homeless problem in Chico above one business owner actually non-sarcastically (and likely accidentally) quoted Ebenezer Scrooge stating “There are programs for these people and they refuse to use them.”

What we are going to actually see is an already over-impacted social service system unable to meet the needs of millions more people and their families.  School systems already going broke will be required by law to provide food and access to learning materials for the families and that my friends is going to impact you comfortable homeowners who are paying property taxes.  I’m quite sure there will be gnashing of teeth and refusal to vote for higher property taxes to take care of that kindly mechanic who is now down on his luck.  We don’t like looking future in the face after all.

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New Diagnostic Measures

All this thought of homelessness and joblessness has me depressed so it’s a perfect time to bring up the fact that the Psychiatric community rolled out their new DSM volume #5 this year.  It is full of supercilious, unnecessary diagnoses designed to make you feel like you have something other than generalized depression.  Because let’s face it, in a land where we love designer drugs and designer jeans, of course we want designer mental health problems.

The Mental Health service community has gone to great lengths to train practitioners in the new manual and like to point out that it fills in the gaps where people were falling through the cracks of service.  What this really means is now people who would have been told they need exercise and to talk to someone, maybe get a cat or a friend, make some goals; now has a medically billable number for their heartache.  Thanks to Obamacare we have a mandatory national health care plan primed and ready to make some money using those new medical access codes! Yay for everyone! (Who is in the field of making money off of pain and suffering.)

It’s not that the DSM is all bad, it is simply that the changes are unnecessary; make it easier for untrained practioners to “diagnose” people with mental health disorders instead of spending time getting to know them and their backgrounds.  Also let’s not forget the DSM was never, ever the only standard of practicing psychiatry.  There are all sorts of other measures for diagnosis that fell by the wayside thanks to big money and financial backing for publication of the DSM.  Many old school psychiatrists feel that some of the other early manuals were actually better, but now we’ll never know.

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Christ’s Tears

This year also seemed to be the year of Christians pulling the “angry white man” ploy and pointing fingers at everything and everybody in a bid to be the underdog.  If we are looking at combined numbers of Christians everywhere this simply cannot be true.  They still hold second place as the largest religion in the world, particularly if you group all the various sects together under the banner of Christ believers.  (Which none of them like, they don’t actually play well together.)

Yet this year, somehow they became the bullied, the odd man out, and the fringe.  This in turn began what might be the stupidest war of words between Christians and Atheists.

Where before, Atheists appealed to reason and failing that took a live and let live attitude, this year things got mean and somewhat crazy.  Atheist churches started sprouting up which kinda defeats the purpose of Atheism.  Christians fired back with the good old “you’re taking out rights away.” Which make zero sense and Atheists started culling their Christian friends for it, singling people out and outing them like they were in the closet.  This actually happened on both sides of the fence.

Muhammad and his followers however are still enjoying the sanctity of privacy as nobody is going to touch his image any time soon.

Attempted Rapture courtesy of Crowley
Attempted Rapture image courtesy of Crowley

This can all be blamed on Attempted Rapture

Is this theory based in fact? No more than any other theory put forth by people in their arguments.  But if people can argue that there is a great cabal trying to get rid of Christianity because President Obama chose to say “Holiday Tree” rather than “Christmas Tree.” Then I can blame this all on the remastering and republishing of Attempted Rapture.

Indeed, I believe only demonic forces would attempt to rip apart a story of a young man’s struggle with growing up, loss of faith, loss of love, finding of love and losing it again and again and Oh God AGAIN!!!- into a cleverly camouflaged manual on tearing apart the fabric of American down home redundant fundamentalist values.

The story itself is so sweet and heartrending; a young man finds that running away from home to the big city was not all he thought it would be.  As in the tale of the prodigal son, he returns home to find his father and mother receive him with open arms.  Also as with the prodigal son he returns to find everyone else he knew treat him with a mixture of jealously, disdain, fear and a certain longing for what they cannot reach for themselves.

The demonic forces that surely got into the writer Mitchell Warren really work their magick on the “Saint” version which is marketed directly to the righteous.  Cleverly it tells people, “Come, this is the safe version.” Kinda like those cleaned up Hollywood movies Mormons marketed in the 90’s.  But, what it takes away is hope and feeling and any sort of redemptive spirit.  But readers blithely do not notice because they feel safe in words that shun unspeakable acts.

And there are unspeakable acts aplenty in the “Sinner” version of this masterfully crafted monstrosity.  It is in essence a how-to guide to corrupting innocence as well as a sex manual the like we have not seen since the Kama Sutra. The earnest anti-hero Hal is made to seem so sympathetic that of course those sinners reading this book will identify with him want to be him; but a better him and will of course fail.

The point being that like the bible, the release of these tomes into the world at this time surely portends…something. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that if by chance anyone like say, Sarah Palin got a hold of this book, she would hold it up as an attack on Christianity.  Atheists too would be extremely put out by it.  Atheist mover and shaker Rodney Florence from Austin, TX would likely decry that this book is set in his state at all and that it is obviously an attack on all godless atheists in Texas designed to make Christians light up their torches and build fires under local usurping Atheists.

No, this divisive book is very definitely troublesome and should be dealt with before it distracts us in the coming year, furthering the ridiculous religious wars already distracting us from doing things like feeding people and helping them with their holiday spirits.

Let’s make 2014 a better year, a less Meh year by pro-actively banning Attempted Rapture in all its versions.  The world will be a better place and perhaps we will stop all the in-fighting, craziness and get down to worrying about each other as people and not objects.

 

 

*The opinions expressed regarding Attempted Rapture cannot be validated, we have no statistics on its effects on the human condition and/or Demonic influences.  There is no conclusive evidence that the author Mitchell Warren was in anyway possessed or demon influenced (although we have heard some compelling stories about him being spotted late night at crossroads across rural Texas).  

Halloween Horror Flick Winner and Reviews

resolutionBy: Grainne Rhuad

After hours of watching blood, guts, extreme close ups of god knows what and artistical use of colour, I have come to a conclusion about Horror this season.  Makers of Horror are getting lazy.  There is a terrifying trend in the Horror genre to try to re-create what the writer/directors feel would be a real life experience for the audience.  This generally results in the overused technique of first person view.  Now, when I first saw horror shot this way which for me was The Blair Witch Project it worked, I was startled and brought into the movie however too many horror flicks since then have employed such tactics and what I end up with is a queasy stomach from motion sickness and a sure knowledge that something is going to jump out at me at some point.  It has stolen from me the shock factor. Also I don’t know if directors really think about this, but when we are actually experiencing a situation; whatever it may be, we have peripheral vision.  It’s what keeps us from puking through our life.

This is why I was delightfully surprised when I really liked the suggestions of V/H/S 1&2 given to me by Heather Warren who runs the site DFW-Haunted.com; she wins the “Scare Me and Win Stuff Spooktacular” this season.   She will be receiving Subversify Swag just as soon as she picks it.

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I really did not expect to like the V/H/S franchise and was pleasantly surprised by the fact that of the two I watched I was still left with a sense of “what the shit is causing people to stare at video that is killing them.”  And also, “Who the fuck still uses V/H/S?”  It’s a good idea, the films; I hope they end it before it becomes trite though.

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Honorable mention goes to Hubbleboy who suggested Ponytpool  which borrowed heavily from the style of the War of the Worlds broadcast, but not so much so that it didn’t have its own flavor.  I highly recommend it.  In fact this was the first film that I found myself thinking “I want to see this as a play.” Not that this thought means anything to you, but it was a different experience for me.  It will stand out as one of my favorites for a long time.

There are other movies that I watched this year that I liked a lot.  Nowhere in this list is Satan’s Little Helper.  Please Do Not watch that movie-Ugh! But, I will share some of my favorites with you.

My favorite Monster Movie

the bay

This turned out to be The Bay a nicely put together movie about what horrific things can go wrong when you combine politics and kickbacks with corporate farming and a general “I don’t give a shit about the future.” attitude.

My favorite Spooky Themed Cartoon

Frankenweenie-main

My favorite cartoon of this year’s viewing season was Frankenweenie. Tim Burton managed once again to visit the world that Edward Scissorhands lives in and create a heartwarming tale that includes necromancy, coming of age and Vincent Price.  I loved that it was black and white and I loved that it included almost all the elements of Saturday afternoon monster/horror movies that I used to watch as a kid on rainy days.  This cartoon while fine for young ones is aimed at all of us.

My favorite Ghost Story

seventh moon

The Ghost Story that won my heart this year was Seventh Moon.  Written and directed by Eduardo Sanchez who also wrote and directed The Blair Witch Project, Lovely Molly (A+++,but I recommended that last year) Altered,  as well as a segment of V/H/S 2 ( “A ride in the park”)

The Seventh Moon was beautifully shot on location in Hong Kong, and included traditional Chinese ghosts in the form of the Hungry Ghost legends.  Sanchez is really making good in the horror genre and I frankly can’t wait to see more from him.

Best Low Budget/Indie

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Resolution gets this one hands down for me.  When I finished watching this film I couldn’t stop thinking about it for a couple of days which is a good thing.  I wish I could tell you more about this movie without ruining it for you but I can’t.  It’s slow at first and then it gets complex and then it gets under your skin and then, if you’re like me, you begin treating it like a choose your own adventure story.  I imagine it’s not for everyone but I found it incredibly real and disturbing and fun all at once.  I’d be interested in hearing what anyone else thought about it.

Now, if I hadn’t seen Resolution, my pick would have been Shadow People which also is definitely worth checking out and might just have you walking through your house with your eyes closed at night.

shadow-people

So, that’s it.  My best of list for this year.  It wasn’t easy because I was sorely tempted to throw in blasts from the past like Phantasm (Love it!) all the Evil Deads (Ash-tastic!) and House (Cheeze factory)  but we all have to stop lists someplace.

Now, go out and get your ghoul on!  You only have 3 more days until All Hallows, you need to choose well what you’ll watch when the veil is thin between this world and all other worlds.  And if all else fails; choose Trick r’ Treat.

Ghosts and Meatballs and Other Ghostly Tales out of Texas

Cal Jennings
Cal Jennings

Halloween is approaching and do we really need to restate at this point how much we love a good ghost story?  This comes to us straight out of Texas from longtime friend of Subversify Cal Jennings. You can find more from Cal @ http://spaceeagleproductions-cal-el.blogspot.com/?m=1 Please to Enjoy.

By: Cal Jennings

I’ve had a few interactions with the paranormal in my lifetime, but none more intriguing to me than my experience at The Spaghetti Warehouse in Houston Texas. However, this was not my first experience and so I’ll begin at the beginning.

Cal's Haunted Childhood Home
Cal’s Haunted Childhood Home

I lived in a haunted house from the time I was 14 until I graduated high school. The ghost residing in this home was friendly. It was supposedly and ex-CIA agent who died in the house. He mostly liked to slam the door between the dining room and the kitchen if it was left open, but he would play with me sometimes. I would place objects on the table in a certain order and he would rearrange them. My grandparents, my uncle, my mother, and my sisters all witnessed the events multiple times. He also seemed to love Quentin’s Theme. I had a bat kite hanging from a string that never usually moved, but when I put on that record, it would turn back and forth as if someone were dancing with it. When I told my grandmother about it she said that Quentin’s Theme used to have another name. I can’t recall the name she told me but it was something similar to “Annie’s Waltz.” I tried playing other music from classical to hard rock to see if the kite would move because of vibrations from the speakers, but it was to no avail. It only moved when I played Quentin’s Theme.

I only visibly saw him once. My cousin thought it was me at first and I heard him say, “Calvin, do you want to come out and play?” It replied back in a mean, loud voice, “NO!” I yelled to my cousin that I was in the bathroom under the stairs, quickly zipped up my pants (thankfully nothing got caught in the zipper), and ran out. I saw something that looked a lot like me going up the stairs which disappeared halfway. I believe that was the last time any of us saw or heard from the ghost. Interestingly, I had been injected with radioactive dye for a kidney scan a week previously, though. Perhaps the radioactivity caused me to split into two beings in a manner similar to the occurrences in the early horror movies? OOOooooh!

The second occurrence, which I believe was real, was when someone called me to exorcise some demons out of their house. I had just left the ultra-right/conservative bible college in Florida. It was the sort of institution that went so far as to send staff to spy on people who went on dates to be sure they didn’t kiss or do anything not “Christian.” This was COLLEGE for goodness sake! I also objected to their teachings on the bible and Christ in general. When they brought a couple up on stage in front of the entire college to ridicule them for having half a beer when they ate pizza, I was out of there after advising the woman to seek legal counsel and sue their pants off… but I digress.

I was back in Houston feeling that I had done the right thing and helped expose a very non-Christian Christian college. I had taken up going to a Bible Church instead of a Church of Christ or Baptist Church, both of which I had been to prior to heading off to college. I had a good knowledge of the bible and had studied and pondered the more paranormal acts of Jesus such as healing the sick and casting out demons. My confidence was pretty high.

When I was called to cast out the demons at the person’s house, I told them to call the preacher. When they called back and said that the preacher was afraid because a demon had attacked a man who cast out a demon in the name of Jesus and the name of Paul, I thought, “That’s silly. He should know that it was because he added the name of Paul that the demon was able to attack him.” Still, I didn’t want to do it because I had taken about two hits of a weak joint earlier in the day but I felt I had sinned and wasn’t worthy. I told the person to call the elder. I got on my knees and prayed that God send someone else from the church because I didn’t feel worthy. The person called back and the elder had turned them down and was afraid for the same reason. After praying for forgiveness for my horrible sin of taking a couple tokes off of a joint, I reluctantly agreed to go to cast out the demons.

It was early in the evening when I arrived at the house. Before entering, I prayed for protection. I rang the doorbell and the woman answered the door. She was about 18 or 19 and had called her boyfriend to come over after I had arrived. While we were awaiting his arrival, I asked to see the area of the occurrences she had seen. She took me into her bedroom and I looked around.

Her dresser was cluttered with pictures, perfume, nail polish bottles, and lipstick cases. The closet door was open revealing a plaster skull that appeared to have had a black candle that had been burned enough to make it drip on the skull… I supposed this had been done in an attempt to make it look scary.

The woman stood by the closet as I entered the room. The skull appeared to move wherever she moved. My thought was that this might have been accomplished with fishing line or something and moved further into the room. Suddenly, the bottles on the dresser started flying at us. It was like something right out of the movie The Exorcist but this was before the movie was released. The bottles were hitting her but stopped about a foot away from me and dropped to the floor as if they had hit a wall. Perhaps I should have prayed for protection for the woman as well? Ah well, It was my first (and to this date) only exorcism. I examined the bottles and the dresser to be sure there was no strings or wires or devices that could hurl the bottles and decided that it wasn’t phony. I immediately said, “Satan, I cast you out in the name of Jesus!” and all of the activity stopped.

About that time, her boyfriend arrived at the door. They came in and I asked them some questions about whether or not they had engaged in any Satanic worship or summoning of spirits to which they answered, “No.” which left me confused as to what caused the problem in the first place, so I asked about anything I could think about. I asked about Astrology books and they had a lot of them and handed them to me, but I didn’t feel that would do it. I asked if they had any books on voodoo or anything else and they said, “No, but we have this.” They then pulled out a large Satanic Bible. I thought maybe that would do it. Just to be sure, we took all the books and the skull to the middle of the street in the barely developed neighborhood where I crashed the skull on the pavement and burned the books. Yes, I burned the books. Okay. So I was a book burner just that once. So sue me! I then turned to them and told them to get into a church that they could live with and stay in it. I didn’t hear from them until ten years later when they called me to thank me. Somehow they found that I had moved to Texas City and gave me a call.

Around 1990, my now late wife and I went to Houston to eat at the Spaghetti Warehouse because we loved Italian food. It may have been an anniversary or just a romantic date, I’m not sure since my memory fails me but I was looking forward to a romantic dinner out then some lovemaking afterward. It was around 6pm when we arrived and the sky was clear and the sun was still shining. As I entered, I asked to sit upstairs so I could overlook the beautiful fixtures that had been installed in the place. I loved fixtures and articles from the past, partially from noticing the amazing handiwork that was put into my grandfather’s house which was said to be haunted. I really don’t know. I was always drawn to the beauty of the past and the majestic carvings on buildings from around the 1800’s. Because I had just had back surgery, I was in a wheelchair. At the time, I had no knowledge of anything other than some people saying the place was haunted. I didn’t believe it. It’s one of the several places in Houston rumored to be haunted.

 

Houston Spaghetti Warehouse
Houston Spaghetti Warehouse

 

The only one I’ve been to is The Spaghetti Warehouse. I guess it must be listed first for a reason.  According to an article I found this on Examiner.com, the history of the property states:

“The ghost tales center on a young pharmacist who was dedicated to his job. He was busy with a pile of paper work with invoices overflowing upon his desk. Grabbing a stack of the files, he headed for the back elevator. Without looking, he stepped into the dark, open elevator shaft and fell several feet to his death.

When the man didn’t return home in time for dinner that evening, his adoring wife began to worry. She hurried to the warehouse hoping to find her husband busy at work. Instead she found a found a group of people standing in and about the building talking about a tragedy that occurred there.  Inside the warehouse she found the remains of her beloved husband crumpled at the bottom of the elevator shaft. The distraught woman died at her home about a year later. Her family believes she died of a broken heart.”

They describe a man who fell down the elevator shaft, and his wife who died a year later of a broken heart, but what I saw was a young, beautiful woman, strangely dressed, who hit on me. I thought the woman had some nerve hitting on me in front of my wife but, due to her beauty, I found myself secretly wishing that I was single. The woman first said, “You’re a mighty good looking man. I replied, “You’re not bad yourself. Meet my wife, Diane.” After meeting my wife, she said something along the lines of, “Would you like to go somewhere and make out?” I replied, “No. I’m married.”

After I turned down her advances, she walked into the elevator and disappeared… fading away rather than just vanishing. I thought maybe I was seeing things or that perhaps the waitress knew who the woman was. I thought she might have been a customer who had been seated around the corner where I couldn’t see her. When I called the waitress over and asked if she had seen a woman that fit the description I gave her, her face turned white and she replied, “That’s the ghost.” I thought the staff had probably been coached to say such things, but seeing the woman vanish in the elevator was very puzzling.

We had problems with our elevators at work at the refinery but ours were much newer than those old wrought iron gates they used to have. They had safety devices to stop the elevator if the door was open and had heavy steel doors which opened vertically. Sometimes the safety devices would fail and you could open a door and the elevator wouldn’t be there. When I went to the Spaghetti Warehouse, they still had the old gate on the elevator. I can’t recall if the wrought iron gate had any safety devices but I remember thinking it was rather ineffective for an elevator door. I came up in it because I was in a wheelchair at the time. I do wonder if it was illness and/or ailment like my radiation or being in a wheelchair that attracted the ghosts.

Here’s a video that describes the story of the legend of the haunting.

Now, I don’t believe in orbs. I think orbs are just lens defects or peculiarities of the particular camera being used. I think the discoloration on the picture is probably a result of aging and moisture. It’s harder though, to dismiss a lovely woman hitting on me in front of my wife, heading into the elevator when I rejected her advances, closing the door behind her and disappearing without the elevator ever moving. Was any of this real? Who knows for sure?

 

 

If you’d like to visit the Spaghetti Warehouse yourself, they are located at 901 Commerce St., Houston.  You can visit their website @ www.meatballs.com

The Revenge Of The Nerds

TriLambCrest

By: Grainne Rhuad

“This is not America –Lalalalala”-David Bowie

America, my how you have changed you rowdy teenager.  To my way of thinking you are just going through the natural courses of a country.  But in the fast paced, I want everything immediately and my way culture we live in. (which by the way is very adolescent in nature) Americans aren’t able to see it.

Take for example this article written by contributors at AlterNet about a Coup d’état.  http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/american-coup-detat?paging=off In which they start off by saying:

“The regime ruling in Washington today lacks constitutional and legal legitimacy. Americans are ruled by usurpers who claim that the executive branch is above the law and that the US Constitution is a mere “scrap of paper.”

And

“The basis of the regime in Washington is nothing but usurped power. The Obama Regime, like the Bush/Cheney Regime, has no legitimacy. Americans are oppressed by an illegitimate government ruling, not by law and the Constitution, but by lies and naked force. Those in government see the US Constitution as a “chain that binds our hands.”

The South African apartheid regime was more legitimate than the regime in Washington. The apartheid Israeli regime in Palestine is more legitimate. The Taliban are more legitimate. Muammar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein were more legitimate.”

Excuse me if I missed something but didn’t everyone vote and weren’t those votes double counted due to the whole Al Gore thing?  And by the way, I picture Al Gore in a padded room in some asylum like American Horror story screaming “I told you so.”   That’s likely just a room in his manse that he goes to in order to relax but still, it’s how I see him.

The article goes on to state a bunch of stuff out of medieval times about serfdom, imprisonment, hot pokers, etc. and then there’s this gem:

“The executive branch coup against America has succeeded. The question is: will it stand? Today, the executive branch consists of liars, criminals, and traitors. The evil on earth seems concentrated in Washington.”

What we’re really seeing here is every D&D Nerd gamer’s dream come to life.  Do you not understand that we they dream of living in a medieval dreamscape/nightmare in which everyone could possibly be tortured for “information” yes, but also you may just get to have fire balls and secret combinations to throw at people?

The “news” of today both left and right being written by highly intelligent people/puppets  (Who may want to become real boys someday through magic) unlike the article you are currently reading, clearly.  However what did all the super nerds you remember do in school? Play fantasy games and save up for LARP and SCA games right?  They want you to believe this is happening and they are making it so in your minds.

Game of Thrones, The Borgias and other less enticing offerings like DaVinci’s Demons are all a part of the plan.  It’s the plan y’all.  They want us to believe Obama is Pope Alexander VI, plotting to put his kids in power after him.  I bet they are pissed as hell his kids are legitimate because it doesn’t make a good story arc.

As close to the Pope as they could get Obama
As close to the Pope as they could get Obama

My prediction is next we will see both headlines and possibly a series based on the Change Series by S.M.Stirling because total downfall of society and the rise of a LARP based government is delicious and everyone loves Oregon right?  Even Oregonians would get on board with that.  Start calling Obama the “Lord Protector” and the game is almost won.

Obama as the Lord Protector
Obama as the Lord Protector

I wonder which of my neighbors have their medieval clothing already sewn and stored…

But in case you aren’t convinced here are some more popular literature/cinematic themes finding their way into real life news.

zombies-715

Zombies-

When Brad Pitt bankrolls a movie about Zombie apocalypse and makes it seem possible for someone to survive simply by running around and causing havoc, you know nerds everywhere are cheering.  In reality the trilogy of books the movie WWZ was “based on” was much more in depth and indeed Nerdist-centric, implying that if you only prepare, you could either be King of the Zombies through psychokinetic power or you could learn skills as you go through sheer determination, two things hard working Comic-con fans have in common.

But, we aren’t only seeing this in our literature, film and television offerings.  News is heavily slanted towards stories of humans doing typically awful human things but using the excuse of Zombieism to do it.  We are all aware of the face and other flesh eating bath salt crazies in Florida.  However, now every unexplainable virus is linked to possible world shattering outbreak. One of Subversify’s highest ranked stories included zombies and even the actual CDC crashed their own site by giving out Zombie tips in 2011 and also called into NPR to talk about Zombies and if in fact there could be an outbreak.  It was supposed to be a joke, but still, the CDC people took the afternoon off to entertain the possibility that a mash-up of George Romero shufflers and Umbrella Corp. superfreaks could happen.

This broadcast made everyone giddy and was one of their highest re-listened to broadcasts of the year.

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Skynet-

Speaking of Umbrella Corp. which is likely a given, right?  I mean we have the evil Monsanto to point to; there is also news full of terrifying worry about robots.  And by terrifying worry, I mean articles making us feel happy to give control over to the robots because they will save humanity, right?  Right?

Every nerdist was giddy when Hal got turned on in the space station. People regularly slow down the interwebs watching the Mars rover and then there’s this recent article on robobees. What are the robobees being used for besides likely collecting information on what kind of herbs you have in your garden?  Pollinating Monsanto crops because…of course they are.

The people who grew up on Terminator and Skynet weren’t afraid of that future you see, they want it.  They want the Matrix like a sweet drug because they believe they are smarter than fiction writers.  Maybe they are but is everyone else?

Ignorance is bliss.  And this is what super brained people believe most people want.  It’s what most people do in fact do want but that’s beside the point, the point here is the Nerds are winning.

 

Matt Damon as Apocolypse
Matt Damon as Apocolypse

X-men-

You knew we were going to get here right?  Because how can I write this article without talking about Matt Damon?  Everyone loves Matt Damon, he’s Jason Bourne a brain washed super hero-like spy machine whose only kryptonite is some headaches. Everyone gets those, hence our desire for the Matrix, so we want to be waterboaded and brain washed and made into a super stud like Jason Bourne.

I expect after this summer we will also want to be made into some sort of Robocop machine thanks to his new movie Elysium, which screenwriters claim is based on Greek mythology but I believe is based on the texts stolen from Philip K. Dick (Who’s the Nerd now?) Also, just a tip, anytime you are told something is based on a Greek myth it means the Uber-Geeks who are selling it to you know you never read anything and only watched Disney’s version of  Heracles.

But the heading was X-men and Matt Damon doesn’t really have anything to do with X-men (yet) the point is movies like the two listed above make us want to line up for genetic restructuring.  Why on earth would we want to be stuck in our degenerating bodies if we could modify ourselves and our resultant progeny to do super awesome mutant like things?  We don’t want to be on earth, we want to be in Elysium.

alien pyramids

Aliens-

Aliens are the go-to for everything unexplainable.  It’s like pseudo-science’s exchange for God.  If you can’t explain it and you don’t believe in the almighty- Aliens.  And really, it’s not that hard to believe, we know there is so much more out there in the universe, how can there not be any other beings?  Why couldn’t they have been responsible for the Round sculptures in Costa Rica, Atlantis and The Clan of The Cavebear Chick.

All of us but especially the Nerds amongst us want them to be there.  We want a fish sticks and custard eating Doctor; we want Mulder to find his sister.  It’s the whole reason for the X-files.  Except for the story arc in which Mulder is insane and the whole thing is in his head and he’s really in the Asylum from American Horror Story which would also work I guess because there are aliens there too.

But, real money and scientific might is being put into beaming messages into space, and hoping that another race understands us because we want to believe.  We also don’t want to be alone.

081105-evil-obama1-600x350

Eeeevil-

When all else fails to distract us from the systematic take-over of the world by Lambda Lambda Lambda we are always distracted by evil.  Evil lurks everywhere and please let me know if you have gone one week without having the evil of warlords, pirate, oil barons, grocery stores, unpasteurized milk or Kardashians pointed out to you by news outlets, politicians and “scientists” .

Worried about what’s in your kids’ food at school?  Nerdist Bill Nye the Science guy will distract you from that by reminding you you’re an evil bastard for teaching your kids religious traditions.  Even mild mannered Ed Begley Jr.will go all high and mighty on what’s evil to scare you into riding your bike to make toast.  I believe he learned this from Jeff Goldblum aka The Fly; which btw is also about mutating yourself through science.

But it’s also interesting that the same people who wanted so badly to “paint the White House black” are now consistently pointing out how evil Obama is.  The Right has moved on and are likely planning which Tri-Lamb will be running for office next because it’s their turn and everything.  So of course the Leftist nerds need to distract us by daily throwing holy water on President Obama and hoping it catches fire.

The point is, everything has been planned down to the smallest detail, in somebody’s mom’s basement and the whole time you were playing football and going on dates you had no clue.  This is the time of the Nerds.  Why else would it be so hard to get into and afford college?  There are only so many spoils to go around.

Submit.

booger

Leviathans On The Loose

sucracorp monsantoBy: Grainne Rhuad

Recently, I was taking in reruns of Supernatural.  Now, amongst my favorite seasons is season 7 in which the unleashed Leviathans of Purgatory begin to reign supreme in domination over pretty much everything.  They are so very clever these Leviathans, they hide amongst us and herd us as cattle, even completing genetic modification on our favorite foods in order to control the human herd.

Their first try is sooo, yummy! Turduken Slammers, just what every red-blooded American wants. They look like this:

turducken slammer special

And This:

SPN_0324 (2)

 

And when you pause to look at it, it looks like this:

S7x09-You-Pissed-Off-My-Sandwich-640x351

Humans eat it and become happy stoned satisfied food that looks mostly like this:

couch-potato-kid-477x315

And when they are hungry, politicians and heads of corporations turn into this to eat you:

640px-leviathan_3

Oh yeah, and you can’t kill them.

However, there’s always a problem with pure fast food, you know healthy eating is important to monsters too.  They want a complacent herd, not a fat one, so they splice up corn and put corn syrup into literally everything, after which humans become great workers who are also happy to be food.

Beginning to sound less like sci-fi/fantasy and more like reality?   Sadly even if you are being very careful about your food intake you are falling prey to monsters just as corrupt and evil as the Leviathans of Purgatory.  They go by the name of Monsanto right now.  They have politicians working for them too.

Last week President Obama signed a rider allowing Monsanto to continue killing…well exactly everything.  Why on earth this wasn’t stopped more than twenty years ago is mind boggling.  But it is clear that Monsanto has had help at every turn from every government in the world as well as major backers and management corporations.

And yet, according to Jeffery Smith (author of Seeds of Deception) in an interview with Truthout.org, “Monsanto has been voted the most hated or most evil company on earth for years and years – with stiff competition. Their stated goal is to genetically engineer 100 percent of all commercial seeds with their patented GMOs. They lied to us about the safety of PCB’s, DDT and Agent Orange, and we’ve caught them lying all over the world about GMO safety and performance.”

So how does it come to be that the world’s most hated company gets the backing they desire at every turn despite the very real effort put into opposing them from Farms, Consumers, Doctors, Health Advocates and Scientists all over the globe and very particularly here in the U.S.?

The answer is they are clearly running the show.  Jeffery Smith, in the same interview also stated, “This and previous administrations have been marching lockstep with Monsanto. According to WikiLeaks, the US ambassador to France asked Washington to draw up a retaliation list against European countries that resisted GMOs and wanted to “cause some pain” to them. The ambassador to Spain met with Monsanto’s regional director and then asked Washington to pressure Brussels on its GMO policy. That was during the Bush administration. It’s gotten worse under Obama, I’m sorry to say.

Roundup is now found in 60 percent to 100 percent of the air samples and rain samples in the Midwest. It is found in the water supply, in the urine of city dwellers in Germany, in the blood of pregnant women in Canada and in their unborn fetuses. It is creating a disaster on earth.

Roundup binds or chelates with minerals making them unavailable to plants, which become weak and sick. The livestock that consume the Roundup Ready crops also become nutrient deficient. We eat the weak and sick plants and animals, as well as residues of the Roundup in the food, which further binds with nutrients in our system.

Roundup does not biodegrade. In fact the longest recorded half-life in soil was 22 years. It promotes soil borne pathogens and has been blamed for promoting more than 40 plant diseases that are on the rise in the US. Its persistence in the soil also negatively influences the health of future crops”

And Monsanto’s evil spliced products pose so many problems to the entire world that it is likely not yet quantifiable.  However Jeffery Smith goes on to list some for us.

JS: The American Academy of Environmental Medicine identifies the following categories of diseases and disorders as afflicting the lab animals fed genetically modified soy and corn: problems with the immune, gastrointestinal and reproductive systems, organ damage, accelerated aging and insulin and cholesterol issues. Thousands of doctors now prescribe non-GMO diets to their patients and report dramatic improvements in these same categories. Similarly, livestock that switch from GM feed to non-GM feed also show health improvements in these areas. We don’t think it’s a coincidence that these same disorders and diseases are on the rise in the US population since GMOs were introduced in 1996.

The characteristics of the two main types of GMOs help explain why they might cause health problems in these areas. The “Bt” corn, for example, produces a toxic insecticide (Bt-toxin) that has recently been found to create holes and leakage in human cells. Bt-toxin was also discovered in the blood of pregnant women and their unborn fetuses. Other studies show that it provokes immune and allergic-type responses. Taken together, the characteristics of the Bt-toxin alone may explain the rise of digestive disorders, immune system problems, organ damage, and leaky gut—which itself may promote allergies, auto-immune diseases, gluten intolerance, cancer, Alzheimer’s, and autism.

Most GMOs are “herbicide tolerant” and therefore have high amounts of herbicides such as Roundup, which is absorbed into the food. Roundup is directly toxic, linked with cancer, birth defects, endocrine disruption, Parkinson’s and other diseases. A study released last month showed that rats fed Roundup in their drinking water at levels considered safe suffered massive tumors, premature death and organ damage. Other lab animals showed severe reproductive failures, such as sterility, smaller and fewer offspring, infertile offspring, huge infant mortality and even hair growing in the mouths of hamsters. Roundup also kills beneficial gut bacteria, and can render trace minerals unusable by our system.”

By the way, Monsanto also has partners in crime namely PepsiCo.  (Who buys all their corn syrup from Monsanto grown corn) According to Natural News, “The Obama Administration has given its blessing to PepsiCo to continue utilizing the services of a company that produces flavor chemicals for the beverage giant using aborted human fetal tissue. LifeSiteNews.com reports that the Obama Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) has decided that PepsiCo’s arrangement with San Diego, Cal.-based Senomyx, which produces flavor enhancing chemicals for Pepsi using human embryonic kidney tissue, simply constitutes “ordinary business operations.”

To be fair, they aren’t yet (admitting) to putting fetal stem cells in PepsiCo products.  It seems according to the releases, that the stem cells “taste test” the products only.  To break that down, PepsiCo has basically created a slave race intelligent enough to give feedback to the computers to taste test your soda pop and tortilla chips.

Bloody Hell!  When real life starts to sound less believable than the plotline to an averagely written series about hunting Supernatural beasts we have a huge problem.  What’s next?  Brawndo to irrigate our crops?

Brawndo

In the dire straits we and our elected leaders have put us into; it’s easy to completely give up.  I mean why worry about global warming when your food is going to kill you and exactly nobody gives a damn?  Do we begin to understand that there is no game plan for the planet that we are on?  Should we be thinking instead about protecting the rest of the universe from…Us?  Maybe we shouldn’t be cheering the Mars Rover, after all it will likely lead to more of Us out there screwing things up.

Perhaps the time has come when we need to grab up a bit of personal responsibility.  We cannot wait for “leaders” to do anything right by anybody we can only do right ourselves.  And, therein lies the problem…

We have eaten too much Turducken.  We are complacent.  Push the delicious meat roll sandwich aside and go dig some dandelions out of your back garden. (If you’re lucky, nobody in your neighborhood has been using Roundup)  In any case the time has come to care for yourselves and not rely on global leaders in anything to solve the problems of humanity.

They aren’t human, they are Leviathans.

 

 

http://www.naturalnews.com/035276_pepsi_fetal_cells_business_operations.html

http://truth-out.org/news/item/12715-monsanto-and-genetically-engineered-food-playing-roulette-with-our-health

http://www.nongmoshoppingguide.com/

THE SHORT AND TRAGIC REIGN OF POPE LUCIFER I

Lucifer and The Pope in Hell-Blake William
Lucifer and The Pope in Hell-Blake William

By: Bill The Butcher

The Pope was dead. The Vatican had declared it, and consigned him to eternity with the usual ceremonies, and buried him with the usual rites.

The Pope was dead. So they had to select a new successor to the Throne of Peter, to serve as God’s Vicar on Earth, and to oversee the rule of the Lord upon Earth.

And so the Cardinals came to the Vatican, and they cast their votes, which were burned with wet straw, and the waiting multitudes saw the black smoke rise, and knew the selection of a new Pontiff was not yet.

And the Cardinals debated among themselves, and prayed, and held more rounds of voting, and the black smoke rose from the chimney, and the multitudes of the faithful waited.

And then, lo and behold, arose from among them a Candidate: a Man not too young, nor yet too old, a Man old in wisdom beyond his years, stern of mien and with a faith that, it seemed, was built on the Rock of the Ages. And so this was the Candidate of the World, and so heralded by the Cardinals there assembled, and the votes were burned without straw, so white smoke rose from the chimney, to signal to the world that the Seat of Peter was vacant no longer.

And the new Pontiff assumed his Office, and in so doing, caused the first ripple of many: for he chose to be called Lucifer, being the First of that Name.

And the Pontiff Lucifer I issued a Bull, that spread evil and calumny through the Land.

For the Pope Lucifer said, that it did not matter that God really exist, for the Teachings of the Bible to be followed, for a better World; and so was revealed as an Atheist.

And, also, the Pontiff Lucifer said, it was not possible that a Man had been Born of a Virgin; for such a Human would be haploid, having only the Mother’s set of Chromosomes, and so would be Female.

And, furthermore, said the Pope, it mattered not whether Jesus really had existed, or in fact did Rise from the Dead, for His teachings to be followed; and, as a Corollary, it matter not that there be an Afterlife, for one to be bound by rules of common Decency towards all Men – yes, and Women, and non-human Animals, too, in this Life. And, said the Pope, if the only Reason for following the Teachings of God is the hope of Divine reward in the Afterlife, such a Reason is pure Selfishness, and no valid Reason at all; it is, said he, a Mortal Sin. Even though there be no Hell, it is still a Mortal Sin.

Still more, said the Pope, it was Incorrect of Popes past to claim Infallibility; for only God could claim to be Infallible, and that would be true if God was, and perhaps God was not.

And – said the Pope – if Celibacy was meant as a Requirement for Divine Office, then God, assuming such a Being existed, would not have issued Men and Women with genitals, for such Humans would be by definition unfit for Divine Grace, having in them the potential for Carnal Sin;

Which, logically extended, means, said the Pope, that Celibacy is an Abnormal condition, and that Henceforth it be no longer a Requirement for Priesthood; no, furthermore, that Celibacy is an Offence against Nature and the Lord, assuming such a being ever existed.

And, said the Pope, there being no difference in ability or intelligence between the Male and Female genders, it be immediately possible for Women to take the Cloth, and in future to be Archbishops and Cardinals, and Popes, too, in the days to come.

And all these Pronouncements of the Pontiff Lucifer, First of the Name, threw the Faithful into dire confusion, and caused rumblings in the Holy Mother Church.

But still Worse was to come; for the Pope so declared, that, there being no certainty of the existence of an Afterlife or a Divine Being, all Religions were Equal; and there was no Sin in being a Hindu or a Muslim or a Jew or a Protestant, any more than there was Merit in being a Catholic baptised and catechised.

And, horror of horrors, the Pontiff declared that Homosexuality was not unnatural; that it was as true and natural as heterosexual love, and that if one condemned the one, one could not but condemn the other; for both sprung from the same Source.

And the Cardinals and the Archbishops and sundry Priests of the Church grew vexed indeed, and hoped that there was nothing more the Pontiff had to say.

But no, the Pontiff then said that the Evil on Earth was real, and sprang not from the Devil, but from our own Midst; and there it had to be countered and fought, not through Prayer or Divine Intercession, but by tracking down the Source of that Evil in Ourselves.

And, said the Pope, the Church had grown bloated, effete, and corrupt; she needed Rebirth, and Reformation, to shed the shallow dross of pomp and Ritual, and assume the Role she had been intended, to cater to the Longings of the Poor in Spirit. And this pronouncement threw the Church into the greatest Turmoil of All.

And the Prelates gathered, and from themselves chose an Inquisition, and the Inquisition took the Pontiff Lucifer and burned him at the Stake in St Peter’s Square.

And then the Throne of Peter was vacant, and needed to be filled, and from over the world the Cardinals came, to elect the new Vicar of God on Earth.

The faithful are still waiting.

End Times Melee

domhpendisathandBy: Grainne Rhuad

The End is upon us! The Sky is Falling! The Messiah Cometh! And all those other mottos you read on placards and nowadays billboards.  It’s an exciting week everyone because on Friday, the 21st of this year of our Lord, The Mayan Calendar ends! Or more accurately the Aztec Calendar if you have been looking at this picture:

mayan-calendar

But let’s not split hairs here! The end is upon us! Are you ready?

As most of the scientifically bent community knows (See NASA’s Debunking Page), astronomers have rejected the various proposed doomsday scenarios as pseudoscience, stating that they conflict with simple astronomical observations but when has science ever stopped anyone from predicting the end times?  It’s too enticing this end time fervor.  Nothing can stop it, not science, not superman.  So while the end of the world may or may not come or begin or be an idea on Dec 21, 2012, we want to celebrate the indomitable spirit of prophecy. Nothing can keep a prophet down.  Except heavy rocks, fire and impalement.

It’s not by accident that there are more deists who believe in a final Armageddon-like ending to humanity.  Early human cultures were too concerned with living to worry about the end of the entire world. If anything, they feared the sky falling.  We read this in Chicken Little all the way back to stories of wars amongst the gods.  It is likely this came from the fear of meteor showers.  The main fear seemed to be the pillars of the earth being dropped by those in charge resulting in the literal falling of the sky.

Those who believe in a supreme God need to believe that he will mete out justice at some point, to wrap up this whole experience and reward the faithful.  Many believers seem incapable of thinking that the trip to life might just be a learning experience without any supreme judgment.  In some way it helps people who feel helpless to think that there is a reason for everything.

In any case here are some other prophets who thought they had the date nailed down.  Some of them disappeared into obscurity, some were laughed out of town, some killed and some just never gave up, repeatedly revamping their prophecy until they were forced by their own end to pass it on to their equally devoted followers.

Thessalonians Freak out on Paul the Apostle

Paul Needs an Escort
Paul Needs an Escort

People forget, in the beginning times of the Christian faith, people fully expected Christ’s return during their lifetimes.  After all, he had already come back to spend some quality time with the Apostles.   His warning that he would soon return was taken seriously so it wasn’t so farfetched that these early believers both thought he was coming and were imminently disappointed when he did not.

This happened around C.E. 53. Rumours abounded that Christ had in fact already returned and the general population had missed it.  This was indeed a problem for Paul, who had anticipated a couple of years before that, Christ’s return in letters to the Thessalonians.  They were understandably pissed at him that he may have left them out of the party.

 

The Prophetess Thiota

Later on in 847 The Prophetess Thiota declared that the world would end.  Thiota claimed to be a Christian prophetess.  The clergy later relegated her to “heretic” when they whipped and publically shamed her.  Originally from Alemannia, she began prophesying that the end of the world would occur 847: at the end of the year.

Her story is known from the Annales Fuldenses which record that she disturbed the the Diocese of Constance, before arriving in Mainz. A large number of men and women were persuaded by her Prophecy as well as even some clerics. As is generally the case with end time prophets, many gave her gifts and sought prayers. Finally, the bishops of Gallia Belgica ordered her to attend a synod (which is word used in polite society in place of torture) in St Alban’s church in Mainz. She was eventually forced to confess that she had only made up her predictions at the urging of a priest and for lucrative gain.  She was publicly flogged. Shamed, she ceased to prophesy thereafter.

General Depiction of a Synod
General Depiction of a Synod

Oh yeah, and the world did not end.  Not even a big uprising or anything.

New Millennia

The turn of millennia always brings out the crazies and Y1K was no different.  There are many stories of apocalyptic paranoia around the year 1000. For example, legend has it that a “panic terror” gripped Europe in the years and months before this date. However, scholars disagree on which stories are genuine, whether millennial expectations at this time were any greater than usual, or whether ordinary people were even aware of what year it was

The failure of a prophecy never got Christians down when the world failed to end in Christ’s return in 1000 they got to work doing what they do best.  Refiguring.  Of course they messed up.  Of course Christ was likely to come on the 1000 anniversary of his ascension to heaven not his lame birth on this plane.  So the date was pushed back to 1033 by the “Mystics” which nowadays we call “Crazy Cult Leaders”  The writings of the Burgundian monk Radulfus Glaber described a rash of millennial paranoia during the period from 1000-1033.

Holy Toledo!

John of Toledo was not going to leave the end of the world to chance.  He used science.  After calculating that a planetary alignment would occur in Libra on September 23, 1186; he circulated a letter known as the “Letter of Toledo” (Not very creative but you know…scientists.) warning that the world was going to end in destruction on this date and that only a few people would survive.

Maybe the source of the phrase “Holy Toledo”?  I don’t know but we are sticking with that for now.

Blame it on Islam

It's the hat- It makes me say things.
It’s the hat- It makes me say things.

Hating Muslims is nothing new, we all know this from our medieval movie viewing, particularly Robin Hood and the Kingdom of Heaven; we all love hot dirty guys with swords and stuff. But in 1284 Pope Innocent III thought the world would surely end because it was the 666th year of the rise of Islam after the visions of the Prophet Muhammad.

Some theologians believe Pope Innocent III really meant to predict the end of Islam citing the following writings:

Innocent III wrote it in his bull, “De negotio Terrae Sanctae.”

“And certainly Christian peoples owned almost all the Saracen provinces continuously until after the times of the holy Regortius. But since then was born a certain son of destruction, the pseudo-prophet Muhammad, who seduced many away from Truth by secular enticements and lustful pleasure. His perfidy has grown continuously until our times. Nevertheless, we trust God, who has already given us some good sign that the end of this beast is approaching, and its number, according to the Apocalypse of John is limited to six hundred and sixty-six, of which almost six hundred years have been completed.”
“Pope Innocent III (AD 1213) designated Mohammed as Antichrist; and as the number of the beast, 666, was held to indicate the period of his dominion, it was supposed that the Mohammedan power was soon to fall.”  (Cyclopedia of Biblical, theological, and ecclesiastical literature by James Strong, John McClintock, page 258 “Antichrist”)

However the coming and end of the “Antichrist” according to revelations ushers in the end of our time here so, really it’s all the same thing.

Johannes Stoeffler

Evil Genius Club-Putting science to work to bring on the end!
Evil Genius Club-Putting science to work to bring on the end!

Johannes Stoeffler was a German mathematician, astronomer, astrologer, priest, maker of astronomical instruments and professor at the University of Tübingen. He also probably had some other hobbies like trying to turn stuff into gold and taxidermy.  In 1499 he predicted that a deluge would cover the world on 20 February 1524. Mainly because Pisces is a water sign.

It’s likely the prediction itself was influence by the failed prediction of British Astrologers earlier in the year who though London would be swept away by a deluge on Feb. 1st. Many people stockpiled supplies in the country and left the city.  Not a drop of rain fell.

Now, Stoeffler was not a slacker.  He was serious about figuring how to best assess the end of the world and to that end he made a lot of stuff.

From Wikipedia- Stoeffler’s works-

  • 1493: A celestial globe for the Bishop of Konstanz. This globe, as the sole remaining and most important object of his workshop, is exhibited at the Landesmuseum Württemberg in the Old Castle in Stuttgart.
  • 1496: An astronomical clock for the Minster of Konstanz.
  • 1498: A celestial globe for the Bishop of Worms.
  • 1499: An Almanac (Almanach nova plurimis annis venturis inserentia) published in collaboration with the astronomer Jakob Pflaum of Ulm, which was designated as a continuation of the ephemeris of Regiomontanus. It had a large circulation, underwent 13 editions until 1551 and exerted a strong effect on Renaissance astronomy.
  • 1512: A book on the construction and use of the astrolabe (Elucidatio fabricae ususque astrolabii), published in 16 editions up until 1620, and, in 2007, for the first time in English.
  • 1514: Astronomical tables (Tabulae astronomicae).
  • 1518: A proposal for a calendar revision (Calendarium romanum magnum) which formed a foundation for the Gregorian calendar.

He updated his original prediction to May 27, 1528, clearly this too did not happen.

Since most of these works were inspired by his failed predictions; (obviously something had to be done to make the celestial heavens better predictors of events and easier to track.)  In this case, his misdirection is our win.

Jan Matthys

Jan Matthys- Medieval Prepper
Jan Matthys- Medieval Prepper

In 1534 Jan Matthys took over the city of Munster. The City was to be the only one spared destruction. The inhabitants of Munster chased out by Matthys and his men, regrouped and lay siege to the city. Within a year everyone in the city was dead.

But of course there’s more to this story:

From Wikipedia-

Matthys was a baker in Haarlem who was converted to Anabaptism.  Thereafter, Matthys baptized thousands of converts, and, rose to prominent leadership among the Anabaptists. Matthys rejected the pacifism and non-violence theology of his teacher, adopting a view that oppression must be met with resistance.

In 1534, Anabaptists took control of the German town of Münster. John of Leiden, a Dutch Anabaptist disciple of Matthys, and a group of local merchants, summoned Jan Matthys to come. Matthys identified Münster as the “New Jerusalem”, and on January 5, 1534, a number of his disciples entered the city and introduced adult baptism. Well over 1000 adults were soon re-baptized.

They declared war on Münster’s expelled bishop, who in turn besieged their fortified town. In April 1534 on Easter Sunday, Matthys, who had prophesied God’s judgment to come on the wicked on that day, made a sally forth with thirty followers, under the idea that he was a second Gideon, and was cut off with his entire band. He was killed, his head severed and placed on a pole for all in the city to see.

See, sometimes prophecies do kinda work out…Everyone died on Easter anyway.

Sabbatai Zevi- Kabbalah Krazy!

Early Years- Before Crazy
Early Years- Before Crazy

Sabbatai Zevi was a Jewish mystic and self proclaimed messiah referred to by the abbreviated title of Amirah (which means princess…I don’t know, don’t ask) by his followers.

Using the Kabbalah, Sabbatai Zevi, a rabbi from Smyrna, Turkey, figured that the Messiah would come in 1648, accompanied by miracles. The Messiah, of course, would be Zevi himself!

By 1648 Sabbatai was showing signs of what we now would call bi-polar disorder. It was during this time he showed strange behavior and violations of religious law, and proclaimed himself the Messiah.

Convinced by Nathan of Gaza, another “prophet” that he was indeed the Messiah and thus freed of self doubt as Nathan taught the messiah was somehow intertwined with the tree of life and could not commit sin no matter how our skewed mortal minds saw his actions- Sabbatai Zevi then formally revealed himself, named 1666 as the millennium, and soon gained fervent support in Palestine and the Diaspora.  It is important to realize that the ENTIRE Jewish world of 1665-66 believed that Sabbatai was no mere “prophet” or “teacher” but the Promised Messiah and a living incarnation of God.  It was the only messianic movement to engulf the whole of Jewry; from England to Persia, from Germany to Morocco, from Poland to the Yemen.

Sabbatai attempted to land in Constantinople in 1666, but was captured and imprisoned by the Turkish authorities in 1666.  He converted to Islam, supposedly to escape execution, although Nathan and his other followers put a different interpretation on this.  According to his followers, Sabbatai’s apostasy actually represented the descent into the klippotic realm in order to reclaim the lost sparks of light.  Many of his followers converted likewise.  Sabbatai may have had close relations with the Sufis. He died in exile in Ulcinj (in what is now Montenegro, part of the federation of Serbia and Montenegro).  The Sabbatean movement was revived in the 18th century by Jacob Frank.

Full on "change my rules and religion" Crazy-See how much younger I look!
Full on “change my rules and religion” Crazy-See how much younger I look!

Thousands of Sabbatian Believers all over the world, but particularly in Asia Minor, still secretly worship him as such under the guise of either Islam or Christianity.

However, clearly he did not bring to pass the end times. Although some people like the owner of this blog:  http://snippits-and-slappits.blogspot.com/2010/04/jewish-sabbateans-rule-world-for-satan_24.html  Believe that his followers are the adversarial set-ups for the supposed coming Armageddon.  In fact the sabbaticals have been blamed for the Armenian holocaust of 1908.

Hopi Prophecy

The Hopi also have prophesied that “Turtle Island could turn over two or three times and the oceans could join hands and meet the sky.” This seems to be a prophecy of a “pole shift” or a flipping of the planet on its axis. The Hopi call this imminent condition; and that of society today “Koyaanisqatsi”, which means “world out of balance…a state of life that calls for another way.”

The following extraordinary Hopi prophecy was first published in a mimeographed manuscript that circulated among several Methodist and Presbyterian churches in 1959. Some of the prophecies were published in 1963 by Frank Waters in The Book of the Hopi. The account begins by describing how, while driving along a desert highway one hot day in the summer of 1958, a minister named David Young stopped to offer a ride to an Indian elder, who accepted with a nod. After riding in silence for several minutes, the Indian said:

“I am White Feather, a Hopi of the ancient Bear Clan. In my long life I have traveled through this land, seeking out my brothers, and learning from them many things full of wisdom. I have followed the sacred paths of my people, who inhabit the forests and many lakes in the east, the land of ice and long nights in the north, and the places of holy altars of stone built many years ago by my brothers’ fathers in the south. From all these I have heard the stories of the past, and the prophecies of the future. Today, many of the prophecies have turned to stories, and few are left — the past grows longer, and the future grows shorter.

“And now White Feather is dying. His sons have all joined his ancestors, and soon he too shall be with them. But there is no one left, no one to recite and pass on the ancient wisdom. My people have tired of the old ways — the great ceremonies that tell of our origins, of our emergence into the Fourth World, are almost all abandoned, forgotten, yet even this has been foretold. The time grows short.

“My people await Pahana, the lost White Brother, [from the stars] as do all our brothers in the land. He will not be like the white men we know now, who are cruel and greedy. we were told of their coming long ago. But still we await Pahana.

“He will bring with him the symbols, and the missing piece of that sacred tablet now kept by the elders, given to him when he left, that shall identify him as our True White Brother.

“The Fourth World shall end soon, and the Fifth World will begin. This the elders everywhere know. The Signs over many years have been fulfilled, and so few are left.

“This is the First Sign: We are told of the coming of the white-skinned men, like Pahana, but not living like Pahana men who took the land that was not theirs. And men who struck their enemies with thunder.

“This is the Second Sign: Our lands will see the coming of spinning wheels filled with voices. In his youth, my father saw this prophecy come true with his eyes — the white men bringing their families in wagons across the prairies.”

“This is the Third Sign: A strange beast like a buffalo but with great long horns will overrun the land in large numbers. These White Feather saw with his eyes — the coming of the white men’s cattle.”

“This is the Fourth Sign: The land will be crossed by snakes of iron.”

“This is the Fifth Sign: The land shall be criss-crossed by a giant spider’s web.”

“This is the Sixth sign: The land shall be criss-crossed with rivers of stone that make pictures in the sun.”

“This is the Seventh Sign: You will hear of the sea turning black, and many living things dying because of it.”

“This is the Eight Sign: You will see many youth, who wear their hair long like my people, come and join the tribal nations, to learn their ways and wisdom.

“And this is the Ninth and Last Sign: You will hear of a dwelling-place in the heavens, above the earth, that shall fall with a great crash. It will appear as a blue star. Very soon after this, the ceremonies of my people will cease.

“These are the Signs that great destruction is coming. The world shall rock to and fro. The white man will battle against other people in other lands — with those who possessed the first light of wisdom. There will be many columns of smoke and fire such as White Feather has seen the white man make in the deserts not far from here. Only those which come will cause disease and a great dying. Many of my people, understanding the prophecies, shall be safe. Those who stay and live in the places of my people also shall be safe. Then there will be much to rebuild. And soon — very soon afterward — Pahana will return. He shall bring with him the dawn of the Fifth World. He shall plant the seeds of his wisdom in their hearts. Even now the seeds are being planted. These shall smooth the way to the Emergence into the Fifth World.

“But White Feather shall not see it. I am old and dying. You — perhaps will see it. In time, in time…”

Hopi Prophecy Rock
Hopi Prophecy Rock

Prophecy Rock Translation-

Near Oraibi, Arizona, there is a petroglyph known as Prophecy Rock which symbolizes many Hopi prophecies. Its supposed interpretation is:

The large human figure on the left is the Great Spirit. The bow in his left hand represents his instructions to the Hopi to lay down their weapons. The vertical line to the right of the Great Spirit is a time scale in thousands of years. The point at which the Great Spirit touches the line is the time of his return.

The “life path” established by the Great Spirit divides into the lower, narrow path of continuous Life in harmony with nature and the wide upper road of white man’s scientific achievements. The bar between the paths, above the cross, is the coming of white men; the Cross is that of Christianity. The circle below the cross represents the continuous Path of Life.

The four small human figures on the upper road represent, on one level, the past three worlds and the present; on another level, the figures indicate that some of the Hopi will travel the white man’s path, having been seduced by its glamour.

The two circles on the lower Path of Life are the “great shaking of the earth” (World Wars One and Two). The swastika in the sun and the Celtic cross represent the two helpers of Pahana, the True White Brother.

The short line that returns to the straight Path of Life is the last chance for people to turn back to nature before the upper road disintegrates and dissipates. The small circle above the Path of Life, after the last chance, is the Great Purification, after which corn will grow in abundance again when the Great Spirit returns. And the Path of Life continues forever…

The Hopi shield in the lower right corner symbolizes the Earth and the Four-Corners area where the Hopi have been reserved. The arms of the cross also represent the four directions in which they migrated according to the instructions of the Great Spirit.

The dots represent the four colors of Hopi corn, and the four racial colors of humanity.

Terrence McKenna and The I Ching “Time Wave Zero” Prophecy

You need this antique machine to explain Time Wave Zero.
You need this antique machine to explain Time Wave Zero.

The I Ching was written in China in 2800 B.C. The book contains a divination system comparable to Western geomancy. Terrence McKenna, an American author, public speaker, metaphysician and philosopher studied the I Ching intensely and began to see a pattern emerging from his in-depth studies. From the patterns of lines that were produced through the tossing of two-sided coins, McKenna produced a time line graph and called it the “Time Wave Zero” theory. Mckenna’s time line derived from the I Ching ended in the year 2012 – December 21, 2012 to be exact, the winter solstice. McKenna and others believe that the I Ching accurately foretells the Earth’s destruction, a destruction that is in correlation with the Mayan calendar’s doomsday prediction.

McKenna, another busy guy, was also ethno botanist, philosopher, psychonaut, researcher, teacher, lecturer and writer on many subjects, such as human consciousness, language, psychedelic substances, the evolution of civilizations, the origin and end of the universe, alchemy, and extraterrestrial beings.  I’m not trying to be overly dismissive, but do we normally really believe everything a psychonaut and researcher of extraterrestrial beings says?  Usually we at the very least take a “show me” attitude towards these sorts of things.  But in case you are interested in his Time Wave here is a video explaining it. You may also notice he has videos on alchemy and gives “psychedelic advice”. Oh yeah and he was also the subject of a psychedelic experiment which he claimed put him in contact with “Logos”: an informative, divine voice he believed was universal to visionary religious experience. (Logos in this case being either “the word” or “God” as interpreted by Christians or the mediator a la Sufism)

Perhaps also important to note was the fact that he died of brain tumors which were diagnosed after a particularly long night including 3 migraine induced seizures which he described as “most powerful psychedelic experiences he had ever known”

Hindus-

Various Hindu scholars and astrologers are predicting that Kali Yuga will end in 2012 with Satya Yuga, the Golden Age, beginning on December 21, 2012. The change will be marked with chaotic changes in the environment and social systems, but overall leads to greater knowledge.

The Akashic Record

The Akashic record is an imagined spiritual realm, supposedly holding a record of all events, actions, thoughts and feelings that have ever occurred or will ever occur.  Theosophists believe that the Akasha is an “astral light” containing occult records which spiritual beings can perceive by their special “astral senses” and “astral bodies”. Clairvoyance, spiritual insight, prophecy and many other un-testable metaphysical and religious notions are made possible by tapping into the Akasha.  One of these people is next on the list.

Zecharia Sitchin anThe Earth Chronicles

Largely responsible for the Niburu or planet X theories, Sitchin claimed to re-interpret ancient Sumerian texts to prove that we were created as DNA experiments by residents of Niburu. It’s more complicated than that of course, but we don’t have time here, I have to go End of the World shopping.

Believers of Sitchin would probably also do well to take to heart the stories of the Necronomicon imagined by H.P. Lovecraft because the text is about as verifiable.

Reliable Research
Reliable Research

Raël Going off the rails in a sports car-

Trust me, I'm a race car driver.
Trust me, I’m a race car driver.

Raël, is a Frenchman and former motor sport journalist and race-car driver.  He claims that on December 13, 1973, he was in a volcano near Clermont-Ferrand, France, when he saw a UFO “7 meters in diameter made of a very shiny silver metal and moving in a total silence.” He says a radiant being emerged and entrusted him with a message revealing the true origin of mankind. They told him that henceforth he would be known as Raël, which means “messenger.” (The name his parents call him by is Claude)

His followers consider him to be “the prophet of the third millennium.” Like all good religious leaders, Raël expects his followers to support him. A 10% tithe is the norm.

He explains his mission in his book, The True Face of God [sic]. According to Taras Grescoe of Salon.com,  Raël claims that he was taken to the planet of the Elohim in a flying saucer in 1975, where he was introduced to noted earthlings such as Jesus, Buddha, Joseph Smith and Confucius. The Elohim, small human-shaped beings with pale green skin and almond eyes, were apparently the original inspiration for the Judeo-Christian god. They informed Claude that he was the final prophet sent to relay a message of peace and sensual meditation to humankind under his new name of Raël before the Elohim would return to Jerusalem in 2025.

Raël also teaches the Elohim the human race was created from the DNA of aliens some 25,000 years ago. (In fact, all life on earth was created in alien laboratories.) Among other things, Raël has also learned that cloning is the way to immortality and there is no god or soul. According to Raël, our alien creators want us to be beautiful and sexy and enjoy a sensuous life, free from the restrictions of traditional Judeo-Christian morality. (Um…Yay!?)

Because the Raëlians are big on safe sex, they believe we should do as the aliens did.  Clone people and they have formed a cloning company called Clonaid which promises to provide assistance to would be parents willing to have a child cloned from one of them. This service offers a fantastic opportunity to parents with fertility problems or homosexual couples to have a child cloned from one of them.

The Raëlian headquarters are in Montreal but the cult is international and claims to have some 50,000 members in 85 countries. Raëlians don’t want you to believe on faith, so they have an “Evidence Page” on their web site where they offer proof of their prophet’s claims, Go check it out sometime if you are interested in proof that includes UFO sightings.

Oh and also, they teach evolution could not have occurred. They claim scientists have discovered that genes have a DNA repair mechanism which prevents mutation, an important process in evolution. Species couldn’t have diversified if this mechanism were present. This was at first thought to be an oncogene but is now thought to be anti-oncogenic. Yes, it’s changeable but so is science, people! (source-http://www.skepdic.com/raelian.html)

Bottom Line

Dreaming about the end of everything is fun!  We all have done it.  Okay, I have done it.  But it really doesn’t do us any good in daily living.  Also, predictions are famously awful and very often propelled by greed.  It’s a good parlor conversation starter.  But if you aren’t doing what you want with your life, it doesn’t matter anyway does it?

So get out there and “DO” people!  See you Saturday.

The Night Of The Full Moon

By: Bill The Butcher

“I don’t know any ghost stories,” the old engineer said. “I don’t know any werewolf stories either, and I’ve never even heard of anyone who was bitten by a vampire. So sorry, but there it is.”

We were sitting over bottles of wine and plates of kebabs, with the lights dimmed. The rain poured down outside with the force of a waterfall, and it made the room all the cozier, and the atmosphere just right for storytelling.

“I’ve been listening to all of you,” the old engineer continued, “tell stories about ghosts and ghouls and all manner of creatures from beyond the imagination, and I’ve been racking my brain, but I simply can’t think of anything you haven’t heard before.”

“Oh,” said our host’s wife, who sat hugging her shins with her chin propped up on her knees, “you must know something at least, some strange tale. Don’t say you don’t!”

“Real life,” the old engineer said, stroking his grey goatee and smiling at her, “doesn’t have any pat explanations. I’ve seen some strange things, yes, and I could tell you of one or two of them. But that’s all I could do, tell you. I can’t claim that what I saw explains or doesn’t explain ghosts or demons or anything of the sort.”

“Tell us anyway,” said the host’s wife, who was very pretty, much prettier than she had any right to be at her age, and flirtatious to go with it. “I just know your story’s going to be the best of all!”

“Far be it from me,” said the old engineer, “to resist a request from such a pretty lady. All right, I shall tell you of something I saw once. I have never been able to explain it or find an explanation that fits, but I shall tell you anyway.”

The rain began to pour down harder than ever, and thunder crashed outside. We all poured ourselves more of the semi-sweet red wine and pulled our chairs forward to listen.

***********************************

You know (the old engineer said) that I’m a mining engineer. At the time of which I am about to tell you, I was much younger, and still junior enough for my employers to send me out to godforsaken parts to do thankless jobs for them.

Back in those days, we were trying to revive mines that had been abandoned for many years but might still be made productive, especially with more modern techniques and equipment. Many of these mines were far away from civilization, and often they had been left alone for so long that nature had reclaimed the sites, the remaining equipment, and the support facilities – all of it.

One of these sites was the old coal mine at Koehla on the border of India and what is now Myanmar. A team of us had been sent to try and restart this mine, which had been abandoned since the Japanese occupied Burma back in the Second World War. The mine area had seen some fighting and after the war, when the area had been hit for some years by insurgency, had simply been abandoned to be swallowed up again by the jungle.

Along with me in the team was Ganesan, a dark, lean Tamil with a bushy moustache and a fierce look. There would be others, as well, but later. It was basically for me and for Ganesan to do all the real work. We would be living on site; the others would be coming once we had done all the preliminary surveys.

Koehla was then, and for all I know still is, a smallish village of a few hundred people. It consisted of a row of huts straggling on either side of a red earth road, surrounded by a few cultivated fields and the hills, covered by forests, not far away. The derricks of the mine were visible from the village, standing tall at the top of a low, forested hill. There were railway tracks, too, which had once served to carry coal from the mine. But these were tracks along which no train had run since the Union Jack and the Rising Sun had flapped above the derricks in the distance, and what remained of the rails were rusted through and so overgrown that they could scarcely be seen.

The mine itself was, when we arrived, scarcely in better shape. The derricks, which had seemed so tall and impressive from the village, turned out to be corroded and tilted, their lines blurred with creepers, their foundations damaged by weather and water. The main mine shaft was collapsed on itself, and buried under a mass of earth and rock. Clearly, we would need a lot of work before we could even begin to determine whether the mine could be revived.

Ganesan and I, as I said, were supposed to be on-site to direct operations. We had planned to live at the village, but after one good look at the place, open sewers and all, we decided it would be better, more convenient, and altogether more sensible to set up camp at the mine itself. The old mining buildings were all uninhabitable. Some had lost their roofs, others their doors and windows, and the walls were cracked and the floors rotted through. We had tents, and at first, reluctantly decided they would have to do. But then, where the old rails ended, we found a freight wagon, buried up to the wheels in earth and the grass growing up its sides. The walls were covered with rust but still sound and it was far more spacious than our tiny tents. We cooked on a small kerosene stove in the mornings, taking turns, and washed at a tiny spring we had found in the forest not far away. The water was cold but wonderfully clear.

The day after we moved in, we began gathering labourers together for the preliminary work. Since it was the agricultural off-season, most of the men of the village had nothing much to do and we hired a lot of them, through the village chief, naturally. The village chief was the one whose word counted. We talked to him, he talked to the villagers, arranged everything, and we were to pay him and he would pass on the payment to the labourers, and so on. He was a charming old rogue with a deeply seamed and wrinkled face who loved liquor, and he had a tremendous capacity for it. I’m sure most of what he was given to hire workers with went on to the local bootleggers instead, but that was none of our business. We had to spend a fair amount of time with him to keep him in good humour. His name, if memory serves, was Matal.

The labourers began gathering on the third day, and they worked very, very slowly. We had to be with them virtually all the time, Ganesan and I, to tell them what to do, to make sure that they did it, and to keep track of what they discovered. And in the evenings we had to go down to the village, bottles in hand, and eat and drink with old Matal until the oil in his lanterns burned low and he would consent to our going back to the camp.

On the fourth day we began to find the remnants of rusted military equipment – as I said, the place had been fought over in the war – rusted helmets, a bayonet, and other odds and ends: metal belt buckles and the like, all far too damaged to be able to tell to which side they had belonged. On the day after that Ganesan came to me where I was helping in cutting down vines from the base of a derrick.

“You should have a look at this,” he said.

I stood beside him looking down at what one of the labourers had dug up. It was covered in earth and looked like a large rounded lump of rock, but there were teeth showing at one side and the curve of it was broken where the bone had collapsed.

“I wonder who he was,” Ganesan said. “This whole job is getting on my nerves.”

The other labourers had stopped work and come crowding round. Feeling vaguely like an archaeologist at a dig, I shooed them away, and together the three of us – Ganesan, the labourer who had found the skull, and I – dug around, and we found some more bones. After a little discussion we put those bones in a sack and stowed them away in one of the ruined old mine buildings. It was up to the government what they’d want done with them.

After that we found many more bones. Soon we had to keep one room apart for the remains we had dug up, and it became almost impossible to keep them all separate. No, we had no problems with the ghosts of the owners of those bones demanding we put them back. This isn’t that kind of story.

By the time the first week was over only part of the site had been cleared and the workers had to be promised a bonus to work even as fast as they had been supposed to do all along.

One thing always surprised me about old Matal, the chief. I’d worked in other such remote places before, and I knew all about the tribal chiefs. Generally they were eager – more than eager – to come to where the work was going on and to throw their weight around, order people, supervise and in general make a nuisance of themselves. Matal never did that. I even asked him whether he’d come round and visit – he refused, and gave me to understand that he’d never visited the site for years, and never would again. When I asked why, he just shook his head and took another swig of liquor.

The work went on for weeks, proceeding slowly, until we had cleared some of the growth from the derricks and the old equipment. The condition of everything was so bad that again and again we had to persuade ourselves to go on; we’d pretty much have to rebuild everything from the ground up and then who knew whether there would be enough in the mine left to make it worth the effort.

Every evening, after the session at Matal’s hut which, though unavoidable, was frankly irksome for both Ganesan and me, we used to walk up from the village up to the mine. At first we’d use our torches, but as the weeks passed, we became more and more used to the way; also, the moon grew and grew in its cycle towards fullness until we hardly needed the torches anymore.

On the night before the moon was full, we were at Matal’s when something very strange happened. We were about to leave after the usual drinking session when the old chief stood up and walked to the door, and stood there, looking out at the moonlit night.

“It will be full moon tomorrow,” he observed, in the pidgin Hindi we used to communicate.

“Yes,” I said. The landscape was silver and beautiful. “It’s nice, isn’t it?”

“Tomorrow night,” Matal said heavily, “you two will stay here, in my hut. You will not spend it at the camp.”

“Why not?” Naturally, we were astonished. Matal had never suggested anything like this before.

“Listen to an old man who has lived his entire life in these parts,” he said. “When you come here tomorrow, come ready to spend the night. You can leave in the morning.”

We looked at him. He seemed perfectly serious, and stone sober. He must have understood that we doubted him, so he grabbed me by the arm and pulled me back to my stool, nodding at Ganesan to follow. His grip was potent for an old man.

“You must have noticed,” He said, “that I don’t visit your mine site. Probably you’ve been wondering why. I know that most places you’d find the chief up there at all hours, and the village people too, to try and steal what they could while the officers were away. But you’ve seen, I’m sure, that not even the village thieves have troubled you at night.”

Ganesan and I looked at each other. We’d locked up the old rail wagon the first few days, but nobody had ever stolen any item we’d left out in the open, so we’d stopped bothering. We’d just assumed the village people were exceptionally honest, for all their laziness.

“I used to go there a lot once,” Matal said, “when I was younger. I used to look for things I could use, and sometimes I went there at night too, because that was the only time I was free during the harvest season. I found a lot of things too, but that doesn’t matter right now.

“The last time I went there was one full moon night. Now, even before me, many of the young men of the village had been up there at night, to forage or with a girl; you know how young men are. And one or two of them had been up there on full moon nights, and they had told me of having seen strange things – things they didn’t want to talk about, but after that I saw that they didn’t want to go up there again.

“That night I was there alone. I’d taken women up there, like the others, sometimes, but that occasion there was nothing like that. I was looking for a good knife, and there were a lot of things still left over then, from the war, so I thought I might find something I could use.

“I found a knife almost at once. The place wasn’t so overgrown in those days, of course, and I found it half-buried near the entrance of the mine. It was full moon, so I saw it easily. I’m glad I did, because after that night I could never force myself to go up there again.

“I’d just taken that knife out of the earth and rubbed it clean on my shawl when…”

“All this is very interesting,” said Ganesan, who had been nodding for some time, “but we’ve had an exhausting day, and we have a long day tomorrow, so if you’ll excuse us…”

I, too, was feeling the effect of exhaustion and the raw rough wine. I stood up too. “We’ll talk more about it tomorrow,” I said.

“But you’ll spend the night here?”

“We’ll see,” I told Matal. “We’ll see.”

The next day we worked hard, all day, as usual, and by the time evening rolled round we were dripping with sweat, and ready for a bath. As we went back to the railway wagon, it was with great astonishment that we saw old Matal coming up the track to our camp. He was leaning on a staff, and was panting slightly from the climb, but he was there, all right. We stared at him, astonished.

“Have you two thought over it?” he asked. “Will you spend the night in my house?”

“No,” we had to admit. “We haven’t.” As a matter of fact we hadn’t even thought of what he’d said, and if we had, we wouldn’t have wanted to stay overnight in his smelly hut anyway, but we couldn’t tell him that, of course.

“I was thinking,” said Ganesan suddenly, and to this day I don’t know what possessed him to say that, “that since you’re here, you might as well taste our hospitality and spend the night here. Because,” he added, “I’m too tired to go down to the village tonight, I’m sorry to say.”

Matal frowned slightly. “Then,” he declared, “I’ll stay here with you. It’s the only way I know that I can save you from yourselves.”

“What do you mean?”

“You finish your bathing and whatever you need to do, and I’ll tell you some things.”

“That night,” Matal said later, when we were sitting in the carriage in the light of a kerosene lamp, “when the moon was full and I was here alone, I’d just finished cleaning the knife I’d found on my shirt when I heard a noise. I can’t describe the noise, but it was something I’ve never heard before and I never want to hear again. And I saw things–“he closed his eyes and shuddered. “I have no words to adequately describe the things I saw. All I can say is that they came out of the earth, and that they were horrible, and if I had not run and climbed to the top of one of those metal towers of yours, they would have had me. As it was, they gathered around the foot of the tower and clawed at me all night, gibbering and moaning, and when the dawn broke they finally went away.”

“What were they?” I asked, fascinated. The old man looked haunted by whatever thought he was trying to put into words.

“I don’t know! All I can say is that they looked something like men and something like beings less than men. I couldn’t see them very clearly. Somehow it was the moonlight; it seemed to distort them, to make them almost glow. I can say that they were horrible. And they made me think of bad memories…”

“Memories?”

“It was a long time ago,” said Matal. “Memories that came from the time I was a boy. Bad memories.”

What I’m going to tell you now (the old engineer continued) I did not find out all at once. Some I found out from old Matal that night, and some later, from research I did into the history of the mine.

In 1944, the area around the mine was occupied by units of the Imperial Japanese Army. The British had wrecked most of the equipment before withdrawing, but the Japanese tried their best to get the mine back in working condition. They needed the coal, and they did their best to get to it.

The only way to get the coal out, of course, was manually, by the efforts of men. The Japanese, typically, made no efforts to ensure the safety of the workers involved. The workers involved weren’t valuable or even anything more than expendable. They were, in fact, the entire population of the nearby villages, who were conscripted at gunpoint for the task.

Some reports even speak of a name, a lieutenant named Ishihara. This man, of whom almost nothing is known apart from his name, earned a reputation for his behaviour with a katana, one of the swords the Emperor’s soldiers used during the war. Ishihara, apparently, used his sword in inventive ways. I saw a couple of photographs that purported to show his handiwork. I won’t describe them. I’ll just say that I wouldn’t wish that sort of treatment on my worst enemy.

At the time, Matal was a very young man, not yet out of his teens. He was among those who had to work on the mine, and he saw his friends, too, killed or worked to death by the Japanese. He said he fell with exhaustion where he stood at the end of the day, until the Japanese kicked him up again. And so it went, day after day, week after week, month after month.

In late 1944, Field Marshal Slim drove the Japanese back from Imphal and Kohima and back towards the frontier. The Japanese were in rout, but as they went they left small detachments as rearguards pledged to fight to the death to delay the British as much as possible. Among these detachments was the one posted to the mine at Koehla, under Lieutenant Ishihara. Some of the Japanese would have retreated – not all of them were fanatics who wished to die for the Emperor – or even surrendered, but Ishihara would have none of it, and he enforced his authority with his katana.

The British reached Koehla one morning, just after dawn, and were immediately ambushed by the Japanese. Matal and the other workers who had been kept overnight at the mine managed to slip away as the shooting intensified. All that day the British drove Ishihara’s detachment steadily back, until by afternoon they were fighting at the mine itself.

I’ll say this for the Japanese – whatever he was like otherwise, whatever crimes he had committed, when the time came, Ishihara fought magnificently. With his tiny force he held off the British, who outnumbered him about three hundred to one, that night and all the next day, until by the time the second night fell, he and the remnants of his rearguard were forced to take shelter inside the mine.

It was a full moon night, Matal said, and he and a few others had sneaked back up to see the end of the Japanese officer they had learned to hate so much. They could see the derricks and the rail lines in the moonlight, and the muzzle flashes of machine guns and rifles and hear the bang of exploding grenades and mortars. There was a lot of shooting around the mine shaft, and finally the Japanese began firing back at the British from inside the entrance to the mine. Matal said he felt a few of the bullets skimming past him in the darkness.

And then the British, who had been delayed enough and had no desire to engage in a hand-to-hand fight underground with such tenacious enemies, simply dynamited the mine entrance.

Ishihara and his men must have starved to death in there, slowly. Nothing, at any rate, was ever heard of them again. The armies moved away, the war ended, and the jungle took over the site, and nothing moved there except wildlife and the odd visitor from the village. Only, Matal said, on full moon nights, things walked the old mine site, and it was not safe to be around.

“Are you serious?” Ganesan asked when Matal had finished. By that time we had all drunk a fair amount, and the night lay heavy outside our little metal box on wheels. “You mean to tell us that the ghosts of the Japanese are still haunting the site on full moon nights? Is that what you’re saying?”

“I’m saying nothing,” Matal returned. I can still see him, sitting over the flickering light of the lantern, with a glass of whisky in his hand, the shadows etched deep into his face. “All I’m telling you is that something strange moves around these parts on the night when the moon is full, and I have no wish to see either of you fall victim to whatever it is.”

“In that case,” said Ganesan, rising, “I’m going out right now, and I’ll prove to you that this is all rubbish.”

“Don’t be a young fool,” said Matal. But Ganesan was too drunk to care, though not so drunk as to be slowed down. “All these superstitions,” he snapped, “have to be broken.” Before either Matal or I had had time to react, he had jumped up, grabbed an iron rod we’d found that day near the mine entrance, and rushed out of the wagon. I was full of alcohol too – we all were – and I had got up too, when Matal pushed me back, hard. “Wait,” he said. “Can’t you hear it?”

I listened, and I heard it too, then, a sound that I can’t describe, try as I might – a sound like that of the sea, rising and falling, a slushy, heavy sound, that was coming closer and closer. It rose up all around us, as if from the very earth, and Matal slammed the door of the wagon shut, and stood with his back against it.

Something tapped against the wall by me then, with a ringing clang as of metal on metal. It tapped the wall right at my side, hard enough that I could feel the vibration through the thick iron. It was followed by scratching, something scratching along the wall as if trying to claw its way in; and, louder and louder, all around us was that sound, like the sound of the sea.

And then, from somewhere not too far away, we heard Ganesan screaming. I was too paralyzed with terror to think of rushing out to his aid. It wouldn’t have helped anyway, because he screamed for only a short time.

We stayed in that wagon all the night, listening to the tapping and scratching, and the sound like the sea, and something more, a low muttering noise, like moaning or slobbering. Sometimes it grew loud, sometimes faint, and finally, at about three in the morning, everything fell quiet, and I knew, somehow, that it had gone, whatever it was. It had gone back into whatever darkness from which it had come, to wait till the moon was full again.

Matal and I went out then, and in the light of the torch we soon found Ganesan. I don’t want to describe in what shape we found him. I will say that whatever had killed him had eaten part of him, and that what was left was so clawed that only his face and one arm and hand were intact. In that hand we found an object – but more about that later.

That was the end of the mine project. I reported that Ganesan had been mauled by a tiger, and Matal backed me up. I also said that the mine was beyond worthwhile revival, and, fortunately, the government accepted that report. As quickly as I could, I closed down operations and left, well before the next full moon.

*************************************************

“I can’t explain it,” said the old engineer. He paused and took another sip of wine. “I can’t explain it,” he repeated, “so don’t expect me to. All I know is what I told you just now.”

We all looked at each other and listened to the rain falling outside. “Couldn’t it be,” said someone; if I am not mistaken, it was the host’s young cousin, who had had an explanation for everything so far that evening, “couldn’t it be that you were right? Maybe it was a tiger that killed your Ganesan after all, and its mate came scratching around your wagon? Isn’t that the likeliest explanation?”

“Certainly,” said the old engineer, smiling, “it’s possible. I even wish I could prove it were true. But there’s something more to it – there is that thing that we found, clutched in Ganesan’s hand. We had to break his fingers to take it out because he was holding it so tightly.

“Both Matal and I saw it clearly, in the light of the dawn – a crumpled khaki cap, of the sort you see Japanese soldiers wearing in old photos from the war and in Hollywood films. We saw it clearly, and we held it in our hands, and when we looked inside it we even saw the sweat stains in the lining. Those sweat stains were still fresh, and damp.

“And then the first light of the sun broke over the horizon. In that same instant, right in our hands, the cap began to crumble away. The crown fell in, the cloth peak dissolved, and the sweat-stained lining fell apart.

“In a few moments, all that was left was a few small scraps of cloth, discoloured and rotting away with the weight of the years.”

Haunted South Park- Ghosts, Cannibals, Vampires and Yes, a Pet Cemetery

Castillo St. Fairplay, CO photo by: Grainne Rhuad

By: Grainne Rhuad

This summer I took an (almost) transcontinental road trip from Northern California to Chicago and back.  I have already written about all of that but you can find the first installment HERE.

On the return trip we stopped to visit family in South Park, Colorado.  Yes, in case you haven’t figured it out by now, the background of Matt and Trey’s creation is in fact a real place; or at least based on a real place.  It is in fact a bit disconcerting sometimes when they characterize the people spot on.  The episode that caught me dead in my tracks was one of the early seasons, in which the boys get in trouble for throwing rocks down a mountainside at cars driving on the twisty and sometimes treacherous road.  This really happened, although it wasn’t Stan, Eric, Cartman and Kenny who did it, it was my husband and his friends.  I had been hearing that story for a while before the episode. (P.S. if my mate tagged your car with a rock, don’t be mad at me, I wasn’t there.)

South Park is so named because of one man; President Roosevelt.  It shouldn’t be a surprise that he was an avid hunter and large stretches of land between Colorado and Canada were politely plundered for decades.  South Park received its name as it was the hunting area furthest south.  There is also a “North Park” and “Middle Park” It’s an area that is still good for hunting.  You will find Bear, moose, mountain goat, elk, deer and even smaller game like squirrel and raccoon. It is all still relatively plentiful there.

Making up South Park are a few towns: Alma, Fairplay, Breckenridge, Como, Hartsel, Guthrie and Lake George.  Also lumped in sometimes although over a pass is Leadville. Some of the best river and lake fishing in Colorado is found here with the South Platte providing depth and breadth to Antero, Spinney and Elevenmile reservoirs.  Also Tarryall and Creekfills reservoirs and the best kept secret spot in my opinion Montgomery Reservoir which just recently was renovated.

This has always been a peaceful place to relax.  Except for the Burro Race-(“Get Your Ass Up the Pass. “ Is the motto) in the beginning August, there really is a low-key and relaxed feeling to the area.  In summer kids roam free or work.  There are still jobs here for young people willing to work an honest day.  In the fall, when kids go back to school the town rustles with the sound of aspen leaves and in the deep winter, people work hard not to go out anywhere.  They don’t get a lot of snow, but cold they get.  In fact, the most interesting snowfall I have ever seen was in Alma.  The wind blows it down off the top of the continental divide, right where Breckenridge is.  One thing you can count on, all the time is wind.  Wind to distract you, make your tasks harder and even sometimes drive you mad.

Cannibals

Like the Colorado Cannibal. Most of us recognize the horrible stories of the Donner Party who got stuck in an early snowfall coming over the Sierra Nevadas at the peak of the gold rush era.  Likewise we know about that rugby team whose plane crashed in the Andes.   These people were forced to make a decision to eat or die.  There was nothing else for them.

Alferd Packer

Not so the Colorado Cannibal.  Alferd Packer was just entirely insane and hungry for man-meat. (And wipe that smirk off your face; you know what man-meat I’m talking about.)  Alferd was a prospector for gold in the area.  He supposedly left out of Breckenridge, some people put him in Gunnison which is technically south of South Park but there are so many caves up there. (BTW another fact Matt and Trey got right-see Mr. Garrity in the cave) He started off the season with two partners.  Similar to the Donner party they headed into the mountains in the middle of winter without enough provisions.  It seems, from some stories that he had received advice from both experienced prospectors and Native American Chief, Ouray.   At some point one of them pissed him off. (over something small we are sure, like maybe using the last of the shaving soap) Instead of spending all his time arguing with him Mr. Cannibal decided he’d just throw him in the stew pot.

Nobody really knows why his other partner stayed around after that.  It seems that money, or silver as the case may be is just enticing enough to overlook cannibalism.  It was a fatal mistake as the Colorado Cannibal had decided he liked the taste of his compatriot.  He liked it so much that he couldn’t control his compulsion to kill and eat his other partner.  After that the tale goes off the rails with some reports that he ate other people passing within walking distance of his claim, others say he just ate animals like a regular human after that.

In any case, come spring the stew meat’s friends noticed them missing and when Alferd was seen around town with no good story as to where they were people got suspicious.  He was finally out and admitted he ate his friends and liked it.  (A new Katy Perry song?) Also that if given any sort of chance he would do it again…and again.  He also reported in testimony that he didn’t kill his partners outright but rather cut pieces off them as needed until they died then he just tried to keep them fresh-frozen.

Despite all this, he was still tried before sentencing. His sentence was three years. I’m hoping Colorado laws have changed since then but if they haven’t it seems that Cannibalism is a pretty good way to get rid of someone.  Three years!

After his release, he settled down in Littleton (just north of South Park) and began selling his autograph to ghouls as well as a cookbook he had worked up while in prison. He ended up living well into his 80’s and was buried in Littleton where his gravestone can still be found.  Some people claim he haunts it.  I have heard other stories of his spirit attaching itself to those who fool around with calling him at the grave site.  But none of those have been verified outside of the A.O.B. (Alma’s only Bar) oh, and the SyFy channel’s “Paranormal Witness.”

Haunts

As you enter the town of Fairplay-if you were to do so, right now, today; you would see a new school being erected. It’s in the place of the old school which was cold and drafty.  But, it isn’t the old school that was haunted.  That distinction belongs to a Victorian, situated right behind it, up on a little mound on Castillo St.(Pictured at the top of the article)

The home. was completed in 1874 for James Marshall Paul, a lawyer and mining engineer. He lived there with his wife, Laura, and son, Charles. Later it was owned by Stewart Van Deusen, a man accused and later acquitted of salting the Mudsill Mine that he managed south of Fairplay. George and Mary Teter, parents-in-law of Edith Teter, for whom the school was named, lived in the home for more than 30 years, from 1898 until at least 1930. He was a Fairplay trustee, county commissioner and school board treasurer. She was active in the Ladies Aid Society.

The house itself looks like most people’s vision of a haunted house.  Here’s the story.  A man depressed by the usual; loss of a baby, scant work, a depressed wife,fill in the blank… decided one day he simply couldn’t take it anymore and shot himself with a shotgun, at the base of the stairs.  In addition to that it is said a woman also fell to her death from the top of the stairs breaking her neck as she rolled down.  It’s not clear whether this woman was the wife or a new tenant.

What is known is that the house stood empty for a very long time, at least 20 years.  Reports were made of a lady in old period clothes in the upstairs front window. Also witnesses reported blood on the stairs “that wouldn’t come up.” During that time it was the fodder for local teenage dares of the kind most of us are used to.  Someone or another would be dared to go into the house for whatever length of time, usually scaring themselves out of their own wits with noises of the normal sort that one hears in an abandoned house.  Also of note were “ghostly footsteps” in the dust that would startle someone but most likely could be attributed to the previous dare victim.  It’s not as if anyone was in there cleaning up.

The house, since it has sold has been as quiet as any other home in the area and nobody has come forward to share stories of ghostly inhabitants.  Although kids who grew up in the area, now adults still fondly recall being scared out of their wits.

A spot which has gotten some actual press as a haunted one in South Park is the Hand Hotel,. The building, at 531 Front St., was built in 1931 by Jake and Jessie Hand. The large “Hotel” sign on the roof was added in the 1940s. It was remodeled in 1987 to its current façade. It is said to be haunted by “friendly spirits,” including that of Grandma (Jessie) Hand. In the 1970’s and 80’s it sat vacant and was one of the spots local teens would break into to gather out of the cold.  I have been told by many people, some connected to the hotel staff and some not, that while the upstairs rooms weren’t all that scary, nobody wanted to go into the basement.  The legend is that the spirit of a dog dwells down there and some people have actually claimed to have been bitten or scratched.  In any case several locals report hearing growling and just feeling queasy and uneasy in the basement.  Currently, the staff of the re-opened hotel report not liking to go into the basement and some of the more squeamish employees won’t go alone.  For the most part the dog-ghost has been quiet these past 20 years but during renovations the owner’s son who was a child at the time reported being bitten.

The Hand Hotel

Having stayed at the Hand hotel myself more than once I can vouch for the feeling of history it holds.  The very boards seem saturated with stories of lives lived. It is decorated in Victorian pioneer period with rooms decorated by theme: The Miner, The Trapper, The Silverheels, The Mattie Silk, The School Marm, Nature, China Mary, The Rancher, The Indian and Grandma Hand.  It is said especially Grandma Hand’s room is felt to be haunted by the Grandma who gave it her name.  Her rocking chair has been reported to rock on its own and from time to time she has reportedly been seen from the window.  However her spirit is supposedly a benevolent if puritanical one.  She looks over the hotel.  She particularly doesn’t like unmarried couples in her room.

However, during my stays I did sleep quite well and wasn’t disturbed by any ghostly activity or sounds at all other than the elderly couple down the hall who got up in the early morning hours.  It was fun to sit up in the front room before the fireplace and read all the news clippings about ghosts and listen to the staff late into the night.   It really is a comfortable hotel offering a great morning breakfast and lovely view of the newly remade fishing pond out back along the creek.  Also during Burro Days it is in the center of all the activity an excellent place to view reenactments of gunslingers from the porch.

Old Courthouse

If you are looking for more criminally minded spirits then your best bet is the Old Courthouse which is now the town library. Situated at 418 Main St, the old  courthouse was built in 1874 in the Italianate style of native red sandstone from Red Hill. The building is known as the “hanging court” because John Hoover, convicted of manslaughter, was hung by vigilantes above the courthouse steps in 1880. He is said to haunt the upper floor which is where he supposedly was hung from, right out the courthouse window.  People have reported hearing a loud repeated thump like the sound of a body, against the wall on the side where he was hung.

 

Vampires

The Colorado Vampire is the name given to an unfortunate soul who happened to be from Transylvania and died in Lafayette, Co.  His tombstone is bothered quite often by oddity seekers, weekend witches and other people who like to melt wax on tombstones.  The grave site itself has become so popular that the groundskeeper knows right where to go to show visitors the last resting place of Fodor Glavia who died in 1918 likely of an influenza epidemic.  It’s not clear why anyone thought he was a vampire, some say it’s a child’s story because he was from Transylvania, which would spark a child’s imagination at the time. In “Colorado Curiosities” he’s described as a “tall thin man with a black coat, dark hair, and long fingernails” that can often be found sitting on his tombstone. A cedar tree now grows in the middle of the grave from the stake that was used to kill him. (note: while this is not actually in South Park, it was close enough and on the way)

Pet Cemeteries

Especially for a friend of Subversify I was on a lookout for Pet Cemeteries.  If you had followed Subversify’s Twitter feed during the summer you would have known there were several Steven King moments during my transcontinental summer trip.  From Angry Sixteen Wheelers to reverse peep holes in hotels.  So naturally by the end we were looking for the pet cemetery.

We found it by accident. We were actually up at Buckskin Cemetery, an old pioneer cemetery serving the town of Alma, two miles up Buckskin gulch.  The area was named for Buckskin Joe, whose real name was Joseph Higginbottom (We think that was a cool enough name, but not cool enough for Joe.) He made a big Gold strike in the area somewhere around 1850-something and a town named after him apparently was booming there by the early 1860’s.  Another fun fact about Buckskin Gulch which you won’t know unless you talk to old-timers or read the book you’re highly unlikely to find titled “Nuggets from Park County, Colorado”, By Deacon Judd, is that you can still find in Buckskin a piece of granite that is the left over  “Arrastra” carved  by Coronado and his Conquistadores who were the first white men to explore the area and find gold there. Some of the Spaniards were left behind to develop the mines and they were subsiquently killed by the Ute Tribe, their bones left in a cave full of crystals. This is actually true, even though it sounds like an Indiana Jones story. Their spirits likely haunt the place too, why not; let’s throw Spanish Conquistadores’ ghosts in the mix while we’re at it.  You heard it first at Subversify! Blame Quote us!

Restored arrastra

In any case we were picnicking at Buckskin cemetery wherein we own a family plot.  It is the prettiest cemetery with all styles of tombstones from the 1800’s up until now, some of them still pioneer wood, although a new rule has been made that you can no longer use wood headstones which sucks for us because our only family member as yet buried there has a wood one so we won’t all match.  While we were walking after lunch through the headstones reading about influenza and beloved wives and less that beloved prospectors and listening to tales of buried treasure I asked offhandedly about whether there was a pet cemetery.

Buckskin Cemetary

“Oh sure.” My mother-in-law informed me, “It’s over the hill back there, quite a walk and climb, but it’s over there, we were thinking of putting Hocking (the family dog)  in there when he dies. I’ve even heard there’s a burro there.”

There may or may not be a burro there, I wouldn’t be surprised, but there is definitely a memorial in town to  the beloved burro “Prunes” who belonged to Rupe Sherwood who subsequently had his ashes interred next to his burro at his death; a year later. So I guess technically that makes two pet cemeteries.  One which the state Governor, Radios and Newspapers announced; really the memorial to a burro in 1930 was a big thing and the other which cannot be found without a local.

Prunes the Burro’s Memorial, Fairplay, CO

So there you have it, not only does South Park host Cannibals and Vampires and All manner of Ghosts from Conquistadores to Suicides but it also has a creepy as hell Pet Cemetery tucked way back in the woods and hard as hell to get to.  Stephen King would be proud.

 

 

Note: In instances where stories varied greatly the author chose to use the most preposterous and implausible story.