Friday, September 30, 2011

Neverendingwonder Halloween Radio is on the air!

Another of my faves.  A wonderful resource for Halloween and horror music, broadcast through the month of October.  Essential!

Gothtober Begins! (I hope...)

The site's not been updated, yet. This is one of my favorite little web ventures. Every day in October they post a new video short dealing with the season. Some are cute, some are weird, some are unfathomable.Fun stuff!  And hopefully it'll be gearing up tomorrow.

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Very touching. I love technology when it's used like this.

The Food Network's 'Halloween Wars' is coming up on the 2nd

Some tunes for the Season

Halloween theme

DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince

The Dream Syndicate

Sonic Youth

A nice article on the death (and life!) of record stores

Sigh...the good ol' days. 

(Thanks for the link, Erik!)

My fave Pumpkin Patch in NoVA

The selection is great.  I always spend a small fortune here.

Happy National Hot Mulled Cider Day!


Happy Eve of the Black Month!

Neat-O! Halloween Time Begins!!!

Happy Birthday Marc Bolan!

Happy Birthday Marilyn McCoo!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Top 10 cities for book lovers

First of all, I once again question the designation of "city" to some of these burgs.  But I am gratified to see that Portland, Oregon is #1 and C'Ville close behind.  I am more than a little surprised to see that D.C., New York, San Francisco, Seattle and Madison, Wisconsin aren't mentioned.  Would be curious what criteria were used, here....

(Thanks for the link, Erik!)

The War of the Worlds in 30 seconds, with bunnies

The Poe Museum Lives!,0,5940920.story

I  like this place.  Well worth visiting if you're a Poe fan.

Some tunes for the Season

Kolchak The Night Stalker

Michael Jackson

Bo Diddley

Jumpin' Gene Simmons

Mr. Penguin

Cthulhu Christmas Sweater!

Happy Birthday Jasper Maskelyne - The War Magician

Maskelyne's story is a fascinating one, and deeply disputed. The facts, the myths, and the lies all roll up into one. A magical trick in itself, some would say. He was either one of the greatest magicians of all time, and a savior to British operations in North Africa, or a complete mountebank. Or something in between. Take your pick. I am an agnostic, but his story, (real or not) is a fascinating one.

Happy Birthday Jerry Lee Lewis!

Happy Birthday Tommy Boyce!

Happy Birthday to The Prisoner

My all-time #1 fave TV show. Debuted (in the UK) on this date in 1967. Absolutely Essential to modern living. Welcome to The Village. We're all Pawns, my Dear...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The restoration of Ozzie & Harriet?

I suppose this is nice. I certainly remember watching it as a kid. But I don't remember it being all that interesting. Perhaps my memory fails me.

Doritos Burial

Pupmkin Patches around the DC area

A subway for the Jedi

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Some tunes for the Season

The Marketts

The Five Blobs

The Meteors

The X-Files

Andy Rooney retires - the end of an era

And yet another reason to hate Facebook

Happy Birthday Janeane Garofalo!

Happy Crack Nut Day!

An obscure English and Scottish holiday I am single handedly ressurecting.

Happy Drink Beer Day!


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Some tunes for the Season

Jefferson Airplane

Screamin' Jay Hawkins

Sheb Wooley

The Twilight Zone

Frankenstein's Moon...


I don't know what all this "EX-Mayor" crap in the Post is all about. Marion was, is, and always will be THE ONE.

An ad for Paxton Manor in Leesburg, VA

A haunting in NoVa.

The Nail Gun & The Necronomicon


(Thanks for the link, Jesse!)

We're #1! We're #1!


The Sponge Lady

Fun stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Mike!)

Happy Birthday Zacherley!

Happy Birthday Randy Bachman!

Happy Birthday Mr. Loaf!

Happy Birthday Thomas Nast!

Greatest American political cartoonist.  Creator of the modern image of Santa Claus.

Happy Birthday Sam Adams!

A great Patriot, and one of my personal faves.  I consider him one of the four 'Essential Men' of the Revolution.

Happy Ancestor Appreciation Day!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Some tunes for the Season

Roky Erickson

The Addams Family

Paul Roland

Country Joe & The Fish

Happy Devil's Blackberry Day!

On this date, (per Scottish legend), the Devil pisses on all the blackberries, making them inedible and dangerous. You've been warned...

Happy Birthday Abbey Road!

Released on this date in 1969.

Happy Birthday Gilligan's Island!

Premiered on this date in 1964.

Happy Birthday Bryan Ferry!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Some tunes for the Season

The Munsters

Alice Cooper


Blue Oyster Cult

Happy Birthday to The Rocky Horror Picture Show!!!

One of my faves. Premiered on this date in 1975. A classic of mid-70's debauchery.

Happy National One-Hit-Wodner Day!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Some tunes for the Season

As we head into the Halloween season, let's explore some appropriate tunes:

The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band:


Frank Zappa:


Lovecraft Letters!

This looks pretty neat.  You know those little magnet sets of words you can put up on your frig?  Well, here's one I could use...

A nice little article about Frank Belknap Long

A great horror writer.

The Friends of Old-Time Radio Convention

New info on Depp and Dark Shadows!

I am sooo looking forward to this. 

Hey Jude

It hit #1 on this date in '68.

Happy Birthday Gerry Marsden!

Happy Birthday Jim Henson!

Genius.  Essential.  An American Treasure.

Happy National Punctuation Day!

Friday, September 23, 2011

The white wash continues

Sigh.  Regular readers will know of my disdain at the whole "good german"  myth.  It is a lie perpetrated first of all by the Germans, for obvious reasons; and secondly by the U.S. which, since the early 50's felt a stronger and stronger need for a Germany that was re-militarized and fully in the NATO camp for a war to defend against the Soviets.  Rommel, like virtually all german generals was an enthusiastic supporter of hitler AND his policies - until they started to lose the war.  Then, going against their own enthusiastic sworn oaths, they turned tail and tried to assassinate their leader in an attempt to curry favor with the Allies before the Russians could overrun their estates in Prussia and burn out their cities from the Western air forces.  Rommel turned, not because of some great principle, but because he knew that after El Alamein, it was all over.  The long slide had begun.  And he didn't want to go down with the ship.  Understandable, but hardly noble, and having nothing whatsoever to due with any liberal anti-nazi stand.  The sad fact of the matter is that the REAL opposition to hitler and nazism in germany was small, scattered, futile, and doomed to failure.  Heroes, one and all, but doomed

Happy Birthday to Butch & Sundance!

One of my favorite movies.  Premiered on this date in 1969.

Happy Birthday Santo!

Happy Birthday Bruce!

Happy Birthday Ray Charles!

Genius.  Essential.  An American Treasure.

Happy Birthday to The Music Scene!

Wonderful music show.  Premiered on this date in 1969.

Happy Birthday Joan Jett!

Things that go bump in the Night...

I've always had an interest in the outre. And it is around this time of year, and up till Halloween, that the media is most likely to focus on stories about local folklore, the occult, ghosts and hauntings. I try to keep an eye out for items that occur within the region, (say, 125 miles from DC). If you, dear reader, see anything online in this vein, I'd appreciate you passing it along to me. I kind of collect them.
And for those of you interested in such pursuits, I'll direct you to my other blog, Magick Theatre, where I link to the most interesting articles and websites.

Happy Autumn Equinox!

And so, we are left with cooler breezes, longer shadows, and the drawing back of life. You're in my territory, now...

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Vanishing Cruise Passengers...

This sounds pretty frightening.  Mugging and then murder.  No bodies to be found, no authorities (really), and a cruise line anxious to avoid publicity.  Perfect setting. 

The Anglo-American War of 1930

I think this article is a way too breathless in its telling of this tale.  I am not surprised in the least by such plans having been written up.  This is what military staffs do in peacetime to keep busy.  And supposedly, to keep sharp and be ready for any contingency.  I've known of a similar Canadian invasion plan from about 20 years earlier.  I've no doubt that there's even one for today, moldering away in some Pentagon basement.  It's not serious.  And talking about moving a supply depot from point A to point B as a prelude to war - don't make me laugh.  America's Navy was in pretty fine shape in the 1930's in my opinion.  But the Army had been gutted.  Yes, there were resentments, but there were also many close ties between Britain and the States at that point.  The Northeast elites have always looked to England somewhat enviously and in awe - going to their schools, marrying into their families, and vacationing there.  Japan and Russia were seen as the main and future antagonists of the U.S., and that's where a lot of policy, both internal and external, was directed.  Don't take this stuff too seriously.

Lighter postings

FYI:  We'll be hosting some out of town guests for the next week, or so.  Postings on Weirdness will probably be considerably lighter during that time.

This isn't good.....|aim|dl2|sec1_lnk3|97840

Happy Birthday John Houseman!

Happy National Ice Cream Cone Day!


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Quote of the Year, In the Story of the Day

"I'd warn anyone who's in a relationship with a dolphin. You have to plan an exit strategy,”

No truer words have been spoken....

Zombie Meal Time!

The McCoys perform Hang On Sloopy

Another song that I consider a classic, and love dearly.  I think it encapsulates a lot of what made the first couple of decades of rock so important.  It's simple, it's catchy, and in its own simplistic way, it talks about breaking down barriers.  It also helps that it was on Bang Records, which had that cute little picture of a derringer on the label.  I always wondered how much that meant to Rick Derringer....

Patti Smith performs Because The Night

Beautiful.  I love this song, and Patti.

fanvid for The Crystals performing He's Sure The Boy I Love


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You don't need to be a terrorism "expert" to know what's stated in the article. This thing had a bullseye on it from the get-go. Obviously.  Hell, I've talked about it with several of you over the years. It's extremely vulnerable. Putting the lie to the main reason given for why it was built in the first place.
No.  The real reason it was built where it was is quite simple.  One or more rich people bribed one or more people who are not so rich.  Period.  It's the only rational explanation, and it's one that's been studiously ignored by the media and the rest of the so-called government watchdogs.  The only security this monstrosity is going to have lies in the total gridlock that will encompass it for a solid mile around, once it gets fully occupied.  There's no way that anyone with a truck full of fertilizer will be able to get near enough in less than three or four days of sitting in comatose traffic conditions.  Shirley Highway will truly earn its nickname as the world's longest parking lot; and Seminary Road, (already a disaster) will become a nothing less than a tomb. And NOTHING is being done about it, and nothing will be.  Welcome to Byzantium.  My hometown.

R.I.P. R.E.M.

It was a great run, Gents.  Thanks much.

(Thanks for the head's up on this, Tom!)

And I'm supposed to be worried about the Post Office going under because...Why?

The headlines have been filled lately with tales of woe from the Post Office.  They're broke, and unless we throw piles of money at them, they'll disappear.  Normally, I'd care about this.  Up till recently, I've been a big supporter of a public postal system.  But that has disappeared over the last several months.  We have a neighbor whom we're socially close to, and we kind of watch over each other's places while on vacation, etc.  And we compare notes.  And the P.O. has become a hot topic.  They don't put a hold on mail when you ask them to.  Or they do put it on hold, but then give you someone else's mail when service is resumed.  A week ago, I mailed out a bunch of note cards.  They had the proper addresses, they had the proper postage, they had the proper everything.  And all of them have been returned to me - without explanation.  I even went up to the local station, and they couldn't explain it.  I tried again.  Of nine mailed out a second time, two have returned, (so far).  Again, with no explanation or reason.  I even confronted the carrier as to why this was occurring, a pointless exercise since she doesn't speak English, and I don't speak Spanish (I hate that...).  By now, I think I  know why the P.O. is out of money - they're spending it on crack. Nothing else makes sense, and certainly the perpetrators can't give me any alternative theory to go on.
What really concerns me is personal finances.  I now know that I can't count on these junkies to deliver to me all of the mail I should be getting (like bills), nor can I count on my checks in payment reaching their destination.  This can get serious.  And I'm not happy about it; and then to have the same wankers whining away about how we need to save them - well, what's in it for me?

Creating your own drive-through liquor store

Alton Brown is coming to McLean!

Kinda pricey...

Squirrel VS Cobra!

I post this article for two reasons.  First of all, it's kind of interesting, even cute.  But secondly, please check out the seventh mini-paragraph.  Can you tell me what this sentence means:

"Sightings like this are rare – but they are not uncommon."

Any ideas?

The ultimate runaway train

Doug Corrigan, you have lost your crown....

It's Apple Season!

Some local orchards:

The cutting edge of tenure

Show & Tell!

The Nuremberg Translator

Another interesting footnote to the War.  And one more testimony about the banality of evil.

Yes Virginia...

The most famous letter to the editor, ever, was published on this date in 1897.

Of course, there's another version:

Happy Birthday Bill Murray!

Happy Birthday H.G. Wells!

Genius. Essential.

Happy Birthday Chuck Jones!

Genius.  Essential.

Happy Devil's Nutting Day!

Only 40 Days Unitl Halloween!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

fanvid for the Moody blues performing Om

Beautiful. Yet another of those albums I use to obsessively play at the time.

the ultimate Star Wars blue-ray revue

Death by Porta-Potty

Someone needs to clue Stars & Stripes in on proper editing. In a report of an exploding toilet, do you think it's wise for the first paragraph to imply that it was a "joint exercise with the U.S. military"?

SALE! Transylvanian Coffins!


Court Case of the Week

mother (and I do mean, mutha...) of the year

Abandon your kid, and then sue them for support. Can't believe this is even a minute in court...

Getting the Manor ready for Halloween

This is sooo cool! (And very tempting to install...)

(Thanks for the link, John!)

I Love You

You'll notice the ingredients here. I doubt any of it is true. But if it is, I'd note the obsidian, in particular. Because nothin' says lovin' like shards of glass shredding your stomach and intestinal walls. Works for me, every time.

(Thanks for the link, Mike!)

CSN&Y perform Carry On

Another of those albums that I obsessively played when it first came out. Difficult to believe that was over 40 years ago...

fanvid for The Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose performing Don't Ever Be Lonely

Always loved these guys.  A nice example of early 70's Pop/Soul.  This wasn't much of a hit, I barely remember it on radio, which is a shame.  Great sound. 

Bonnie Pointer performs Heaven Must Have Sent You

Fun stuff!

fanvid for Jim Croce performing Alabama Rain

It's been raining most of the day here at the Manor, (despite our weatherdrones assurances that we'd only have scattered showers later in the day).  And this song seems appropriate.  One of my faves by Croce.

On DVD: An Oral History of Jungle Pirate Radio

Was completely unaware of this phenomena, (and am not a huge fan of all of the music), but this sounds fascinating to me.  I always enjoy it when pop culture evades the suits.

(Thanks for the link, Erik!)

I've got my umbrella handy

Happy Birthday Firefly!

Premiered on this date in 2002. My favorite TV show of the past 20 years. Absolutely charming and brilliant, and criminally mistreated and ignored by the suits at Fox.

Happy Birthday Carolyne Mas!

One of my all-time fave performers. Never really famous, and almost forgotten now.

Happy Birthday Jay Ward!

Genius. Essential.

Happy National Rum Punch Day!


Monday, September 19, 2011

fanvid for The Rays performing Daddy Cool

A song you never hear, even on the (supposed) oldies stations, and I've always thought it was, well, cool!

Nena's video for 99 Luftballons

Fun stuff! Pop music for the World War that never happened.  I was just talking to a guy the other day, (who didn't grow up here in Byzantium), and I mentioned that I never thought I'd live to see 30, living on Ground Zero, and all.  I don't think he really believed me, or quite understood.

fanvid for Phoebe Snow performing Harpo's Blues

Not quite my usual style, but I've always liked this song.

fanvid for The Dream Syndicate performing Tell Me When It's Over

Great song by a great band.

Pinocchio - Vampire Slayer

Fall For The Book Festival has begun in DC!

fanivd for Stan Rogers performing Barrett's Privateers

A great song by a great folkie, in honor of Talk Like A Pirate Day.

Pumpkin Shortage In New England!


Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers released their seminal album, Modern Lovers, on this date in 1975.  One of the best and most important albums of the decade.  A continuation of the Velvet's best work.

Happy Birthday Bill Medley!

The Voice of blue-eyed soul.

Happy Birthday Brian Epstein!

Happy Birthday Cass Elliott!

From Alexandria!  From my street!

Happy Birthday Brook Benton!

One of the most under-rated R&B singers, ever.  Great voice, often marred by mediocre production or material.  Should've been MUCH bigger.

ARRR! Happy Talk Like A Pirate Day!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Stockton's Wing perform Walk Away

A fine Irish folk rock band that you've never heard of.

fanvid for The Count Bishops performing Baby You're Wrong

Pub rock had no affect on the States, (unfortunately).  And the Count Bishops weren't all that big in the genre, regardless.  Hell, I may be their only American fan.  They deserved better.

Carly Simon performing That's The Way I Always Heard It Should Be

If I remember correctly, this was being played in late Summer of '71.  And it's always reminded me of that time, a little mournful, and an interesting notation that the excitement of the 60's (and that Summer) was dying down. 

Janis Ian performs At Seventeen

Sad and beautiful.  This got way too much airplay when it was released, but I always liked it.

Neat news on Wind Power

Very cool!

(Thanks for the link, Infidel753!)

nazi taxidermist?

The ad is only mildly amusing, to me.  What caught my eye was that the dude appears to be sporting a Waffen SS cap!  Interesting marketing concept....

Happy Birthday to WKRP In Cincinnati!

Premiered on this date in 1978.  I loved this show.  Probably the last American sitcom that I could stand to watch.

Happy Birthday to Alien Nation!

Premiered on this date in 1989.  From the looks of it, it sounds kind of silly, but thanks to the cast and plotting, this became one of my fave TV shows.

Happy Birthday to The Haunting!

One of the best horror movies ever made.  A Classic.  Premiered on this date in 1963.

Happy Birthday P.F. Sloan!

Happy Birthday Eddie "Rochester" Anderson!

Genius.  Essential. 

Happy National Cheeseburger Day!


Saturday, September 17, 2011

fanvid for the Street People performing Jennifer Tompkins

A guilty pleasure.  This was pretty much a studio band for Rupert Holmes.  I've read that it was hit in 1970, but I think it got more airplay around DC in very late '69, if my remaining brain cells are still firing. 

fanvid for Tom & Jerry performing A Simple Desultory Philippic

This tune always brings a smile to my face, but I wonder how well the references in it stand up to today's listeners.

Joan Armatrading performs Love & Affection

Such a beautiful song and voice.

fanvid for Fleetwood Mac performing Dust

Beautiful song.  As much as I love Buckingham & Nicks, too many Americans don't realize that the Mac was a great band before their enrollment.

The iPlank

Tee hee!

A Yahoo Group for DC Haunters

More Crocheted Cthulhu!

I've got to get the Santa...

Inside a Japanese POW camp

The Japanese have tried to ignore this, of course, and for our own geopolitical reasons, we've always allowed them to.

Has anyone alerted TSA?

Headline of the Day

Ladies - He's Single!!!

The ultimate "fire drill"

Bravo! I hope she ends up owning the fucking company

It's interesting to see companies are now so arrogant that they believe that by agreeing to be on an email list, you give up any defense against being terrorized.  Nice attitude and marketing campaign, dickheads...

(Thanks for the link, Mike!)

The coolest behind-the-scenes photos - ever!

Best Friends

(Thanks for the link, Edmund!)

The Pumpkin Tree


The Love Boat

If they didn't have guns and a dangerously insane leadership, these people would almost be vaudevillian. Like the backdrop to an old comedy by Abbott and Costello, or the Marx Brothers. For instance:

(Thanks for the link and title, Mike!)

25 Foods You'll Never Taste Again

What's interesting about this list, (to me), is that I've only heard of two or three of them before, and I don't believe I've ever tried even those. (And most of this looks like crap to me, regardless...)

(Thanks for the link, Nancy!)

Happy Birthday Elvira!

Happy Birthday Fee Waybill!

Happy Coronation Day!

On this date in 1859 occured the self-coronation of Norton I, Emperor of the United States, Protector of Mexico, and one of my heroes.

Happy Birthday Baron von Steuben!

A Great Patriot.  One of my faves.

Happy Constitution Day!

Happy Constitution Day!

Friday, September 16, 2011

A neat site for jackolantern designs - Zombie Pumpkin

The coolest drugstore display of all time

The Bike/Book Mobile!

I think this is cute. Can see all sorts of uses for this, with a little thought and preparation for one's audience - "beach novels" on the boardwalk, popular "book report" type tomes next to the school yard, books on local history and folklore at things like Alexandria's Washington's Birthday Parade, etc.

(Thanks for the link, Carol!)


And yet more fun street flyers

Charity begins at Home...

Or not...


It is just a beautiful Fall morning here at the Manor. Cool & crisp, with a late moon shining down. Just beautiful.

Happy Birthday to Talking Heads '77

A great album, one of my faves.  Released on this date in........1977!

Happy Birthday to A Fistful Of Dollars!

A great spaghetti western.  Premiered on this date in 1964.

Happy Birthday to The Bob Newhart Show!

A great sitcom.  Premiered on this date in 1972.

Happy Birthday UFO!

Another of my fave shows.  Premiered (in Britain) on this date in 1970.

Happy Birthday to The Outer Limits!

Premiered on this date in 1963.  Great show!

Happy Birthday Lauren Bacall!

One of  my faves...

Happy National Play Doh Day!

Happy National Guacamole Day!


Thursday, September 15, 2011

An Ab Fab blog from Mo Gaffney

Fun stuff!

fanvid for The Moody Blues performing Lost In A Lost World

Tell me about it...

Joan Jett performs Light Of Day

She is soooo cool...

Graham Parker & The Rumour perform Heat Treatment

Criminally ignored.  Parker is one of the best rockers, ever - and one of the angriest of the angry young men, (even now).

David Bowie performs Changes

Great song.  Very much the early 70's. 

Beer + Horror

The Spooky Movie Festival Preview Trailer!

Jedi Kittens!


Neat article on exoplanets and the possibilities of life

From my ol' penpal, Infidel753.


Am enjoying an early Fall morning here at the Manor; with our meteorologists predicting a cool front tonight that'll dip temperatures into the 50's.  Needless to say, my thoughts are turning towards Halloween...

Happy Birthday Green Acres!

A highly under-rated sitcom.  The comedy is frequently quite 'modern' and surreal.  Premiered on this date in 1965.

Happy Birthday John "Torgo" Reynolds!

Happy Birthday Fay Wray!

Happy Felt Hat Day!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

CSN&Y perform Almost Cut My Hair

If you're too young, you'll never realize how hip and wonderful these guys were. 

Gumby's life of crime ends!

The End Of An Era

Balance and Flexibility!

Fun stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

nice article of things to do in the real Sleepy Hollow

New book analyzing Soviet forces during WWII  Whoops!  This is the correct link.  (Thanks Infidel753 for the catch!)

This looks quite promising.   Will try to snag a copy at the library,

Happy Birthday Fred "Sonic" Smith!

Happy Birthday Clayton Moore!

Happy Pig Face Day!

Happy Holy Nut Day!

Happy Eat A Hoagie Day!


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

George performs If Not For You

Sigh.  Beautiful.  But all things must pass, right?  See ya tomorrow....

The Ramones' video for I Wanna Be Sedated


fanvid for The Supremes performing Love Child

Great tune.

fanvid for Paul Rolan performing Alice's House

One of my favorite songs by one of my favorite performers.

Air Travel

This all seems reasonable to me, and I've seen pretty much seen/experienced everything that this writer is mentioning. The fact is that it is HELL. Our  trip to Wisconsin this Summer convinced Linda and me that flying is now out for anything East of the Mississippi that's not an emergency.  It's become that big a pain in the ass.  I'd much rather spend two days in a car than a half or full day of insults, hassles, groping, and dehumanization that now routinely comes with air travel.  I'm tired of being treated as an extra in Ben Hur.

Hung Jury - Guaranteed

Headline of the Day

3-D Holographic displays for the military

Pretty neat!

(Thanks for the link, Dennis!)

Great moments in Fairfax crime

Scrambled Eggs...

The Beatles released Yesterday on this date in 1965.

Happy Birthday to Grace Of My Heart!

One of fave movies. Absolutely wonderful.

Happy Birthday to The Muppet Show!

Premiered on this date in 1976. Brilliant. Essential.

Happy Fortune Cookie Day!

Happy National Peanut Day!


Happy Uncle Sam Day!

His image was first used on this date in 1813.

Happy Birthday to The Star Spangled Banner!

Composed on this date (and 9/14) in 1814.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Neat Typewriters


Mr Zimmerman perfroming Lay Lady Lay

It's funny how you remember obscure little vignettes in life. This came out in the Summer of '69; and I still have strong memories of sitting in the cafeteria in high school, listening to it played over the public address system during lunch on the first day of school.

The Chocolate Watchband performs Are You Gonna Be There (At The Love-In)

One of the coolest and most ignored bands of all time.

Devo performs Come Back Jonee

Fun stuff!

The Soft Boys perform I Wanna Destroy You

Love this song. MY fave by them.

Psycho Safari coming to Bowie, MD

The Isley Brothers perform That Lady and Live It Up


Walking On Water

Porno War Propaganda

Fascinating.  Yet another footnote to the World Wars.

Hell-On-Earth - first hand testimonies of WWII

I suppose it's more realistic now, (I'll leave it for others to judge), but in my own youth, the description of the War was often so bleached and painless, in print and in film, as to be pure fantasy.  I'm always glad to see the truth about what combat is really about and the terrible costs.  People need to be realistic and wide-eyed about the whole thing.  Its' not a nice thing, and should be treated as such.


Strangest death of the year?

I'm not sure I quite believe this...

Full Harvest Moon this morning!

Happy Birthday to The Monkees!

Their show premiered on this date in 1966.

Happy Birthday H.L. Mencken!

The Bard of Baltimore. One of my faves.

Happy Birthday Gerry Beckley!

Happy Defenders Day!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Spanky & Our Gang perform Sunday Will Never Be The Same

Ever since I was released, I've thought this was a great pop song capturing a sense of loss.  It's the tenth anniversary of the mohammedan attack of 9/11, and eight years since the funeral of my dear Father, and this seems an appropriate tune to end the day with.  See ya tomorrow. 

Bootleg movie posters from Ghana

Fun stuff!

There's a hog farmer in Guatemala who has some explaining to do....

Oh sure, it was an alien, right......

Newsweek takes on the 1995

Only a churlish person would point out that in the past 15 - 20 years Newsweek has gone from being a large, low-brow attempt by the Post to be taken seriously, to a tiny even lower-brow attempt, (by whoever the hell bought it), to remain even marginally relevant to anyone not stuck waiting in a dentist office.

The cutting edge of school buses!

Fun stuff!


Poor Baby! Maybe some music will cheer you up!

Dark Shadows - How would it continue?

Happy Birthday Herbert Lom!

The Biggest Douche Bag in DC

Tee Hee! He's still a big asshole, this just proves it further. I've never liked professional sports. But I now have a favorite team - Whoever is playing against the Redskins and their spoiled, pompous, priss of an owner.

On the way: A film based on Dave Van Ronk & Tom Paxton!

(Thanks for the link, Perry!)

Only 50 Days Until Halloween!


Ringo Starr replaced Pete Best on this date in 1962.

Happy Birthday to The Carol Burnett Show!

Wonderful!  One of the best TV shows - Ever. Premiered on this date in 1967.

Happy National Grandparents Day!

Patriot Day is today...

Never Forget...

Saturday, September 10, 2011

My First Cthulhu Plush!

So cute!

(Thanks for the link, Katie!)

Happy Anniversay, Mike!

Mike the Headless Chicken was beheaded on this date in 1945.

Happy Birthday Raymond Scott!

Genius.  Essential.

Friday, September 09, 2011

The Razz performs Cherry Vanilla

Classic DC early punk rock. The Razz were electric on stage. They were so cool....

fanvid for Looking Glass performing Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne

I know that I've posted this before, but I love this song, and the fact that it reminds me of this time of year, back in '73, (when it was a hit). A perfect example of early 70's Top 40 pop.

Kim Wilde's video for Kids In America

Fun stuff. Nice driving song.

Blondie's video for Hanging On The Telephone

If you weren't around then, I can only assure you how cool it was between '76 and '78. There was a musical revolution happening, and 99% of the people had no idea at the time. Another example of the Underground trumping the suits. And it kept changing and growing. Every three months some new set of groups and sounds would emerge. Some would get signed to major labels, most wouldn't. And none would get played on the radio, (unless you had a cool college station like WGTB). It was like San Francisco in 1966-67, or Greenwich Village in 1963; or London in, well, anytime.

God performs Badge

My fave Cream song.

Chaz lacks rhythm

Kind of amusing, given his/her parentage. Perhaps this'll help:

Where's The Beef?

Can I Get An Amen!

fanivd for Patti Smith covering Within You Without You

Have always loved Patti.

Well, it is a month with an "R" in it...

It's no good if it's out of season...

Voting on the Alexandria Town Crier

America's Kamikaze

A fascinating and frightening tale.  Growing up, the rumor/belief was that there were always two fighters in flight around the area.  I suppose the theory was that there was always the possibility of a bomber somehow sneaking past the usual radar defenses, and one can never discount a ship-launched plane.  (The technology and techniques to transport and launch small bombers from submarines had been known since the later days of WWII).  At any rate, if such did exist, it's been proven time and again in the last few years that it doesn't exist now.  I confess to being surprised that those planes prepared for emergencies aren't armed.  Even a rank amateur like me knows that an hour is much too long in terms of the type of emergency that would be confronting this type of last-ditch defense of DC.  The idea that ramming is the only course available, (regardless of how brave and admirable I find these people), is  surreal.  The numerous illegal flights that have successfully penetrated restricted airspace around here have already proven conclusively that we are STILL totally unprepared to do anything about it, (no one's ever been downed - even by ramming).  The idea that we need at least an hour, should we ever decide to actually defend the Capital, leaves me astonished.  They're not going to give you an hour, folks.

An evening with Brian Lamb at GMU!

One of the VERY few people on TV that I have a modicum of trust and respect for.  Watched him on C-SPAN a lot, have heard him speak in person, once, , (it was very good), and met him once, (very nice gentleman).  Unfortunately, I'll be busy that evening, otherwise I'd attend.  If you're free, I highly recommend this.

nice article on Sarah Michelle Gellar

Sweety-Darling, They're Back! The Return of Ab-Fab!

Loved this show.

Black Widow has a new album coming out!

A great band from the early 70's returns!

Happy Birthday Danger Man!

One of my faves.  Premiered on this date (in the UK) in 1960.  Then, came over to the States as Secret Agent.  Brilliant show.

What's Next?

Sigh.  So, let's see, in the past few weeks we've had an earthquake, a hurricane, and 3-4 days of non-stop torrential rains that have flooded out a quarter of our road system.  And now we (supposedly) have the return of mohammed's minions.  Interesting times...

The Birds....

Joy Rider

Secret Sauce

The article seems remarkably blase about the fact that there's something going on at a public restaurant that is presumably serving food that kills people and require you to wear a hazmat outfit.

WWJD: Who Would Jesus Dial?


People, we've just GOT to get a better class of criminals...

The Virginia Wine Festival is coming up!


Still Standing

What a night. Bailing water out of a an outside stairwell that's threatening the interior was a constant activity. The drain simply couldn't handle the amount of rain and run-off hitting it. The amount of water the last three days has been nearly unprecedented in my experience. The closest I can think of was in '72 when Hurricane Agnes hit us and flooded Northern and Eastern Alexandria. Nevertheless, the Manor still stands.


Was released on this date in 1971. Forty years ago. I'm feeling old...

Happy Birthday George Of The Jungle!

Premiered on this date in '67.

Fun stuff!

Happy Birthday to The Amazing Johnathan!

Happy Birthday Doung Ingle!

So cool...

Happy Birthday Otis!

Genius. Absolutely Essential. One of The Immortals.

Happy Teddy Bear Day!

Anniversary of the Suffolk Resolves

Almost forgotten, now; this was an important step towards the Declaration of Independence.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

An update..

Basically, we are royally screwed. The rain is continuing and there is flooding EVERYWHERE. Part of the Beltway is now closed due to the rain. When was the last time that happened? We've been bailing water from a stairwell outdoors to keep it from backing into the Manor. By far the worst rain I've seen here in decades. The main roads are blocked, forcing commuters into the side areas. There's a full traffic jam in front of the Manor. First time that's ever happened.

Animals Being Dicks

A wonderful collection of fun videos!

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

fanvid for Paul Roland performing Gabrielle

fanivd for The Moody Blues performing The Story In Your Eyes

Always loved the Moody's, and this tune.


For the past three days it has been raining here at the Manor, often quite heavily. I don't know when the last time was that we've had so much water pouring down on us for so long. Fortunately, we don't live in lowlands or a flood plain, (if you do - you're doomed); But this is bad enough that I start to worry about basement leaks, etc. It's damnably impressive.

The Oldest Spirfire

Bartender, I'll have what he's having....

Was Gumby the accomplice?

Happy Birthday Patsy Cline!

Typewriter Sculpture


(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Great Steampunk Masks

Very cool!

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

Halloween Wars coming to the Food Network

We'll see how this is, the description makes it sound a little too fancy for my tastes.

Happy Birthday Star Trek!

The whole phenomena premiered on this date in 1966.

45 years ago, Amazing...

Happy Birthday Peter Sellers!

Genius. Essential.

Happy Birthday Sid Caesar!

Genius. Essential.

Happy International Literacy Day!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

For Real performs Born to Love That Boy

Taken from one of my all-time favorite movies, Grace Of My Heart, (very loosely based on the life of Carole King).  The music and performances in it are wonderful echoes of the Brill Building era, and For Real's contribution is the best interpretation of the early 60's Girl Group sound that I've heard since those days.  

Boz Scaggs perform Lido Shuffle

Always liked this tune. Another great tune to play when driving late at night on some errand of desperation...

ZZ Top's video for Gimme All Your Lovin'

My fave song by them, and a fun video.


Old Tech Is Still Good Tech


(Thanks for the link and title, Mathew!)

Arrogance and rubbish

Sigh.  There are all sorts of problems with such a list.  One that I do not share is the worry about documentary vs propaganda.  It's an endless argument - one person's description is another person's whitewash, etc.  Every history, whether in print or on film is a selection of data and decisions made on what and how to present it.  A point of view is a natural outcome.  Deal with it.  Just remember that the term "Documentary" doesn't mean "The Final Definitive Work Etched In Stone Which You Must Kowtow To".  So we are left with a fairly broad definition.  I've got no problems with that.
But I do have some problems here.  One is the mewling excuse by the producers that they're not the 50 "Best", (probably made because the ignorance demonstrated in their choices can be torn apart in about 2 minutes by anyone with a modicum of intelligence and background).  But yea, they are saying that:  You've gotta see 'em before you die means that.  What?  You're saying I don't have to see the best - just these? Oh, Please...
My most serious complaint is an echo of one made in the Times.  This list was obviously compiled by people who were born less than thirty years ago.  For whatever reason, they are lying under the dunder-headed notion that life started with them.  Anybody of any generation that thinks this and acts that way is stupid*.
I find it incredible that these folks would ignore documentaries that are the equal to any in their list.  They influenced, and even changed great numbers of minds, inspired policies and political parties, etc..  I'm not an expert, or a TV or film historian; but how could you ignore Eyes On The Prize, Why We Fight, Vietnam:_The_Ten_Thousand_Day_War, Harvest of Shame, and Intolerance?  (Lest you accuse me of the same generational prejudices, I would point out that two of these were created long before I was born, and two more when I was a child).
I think that I get pissed off about things like this because I see so much in the way of social studies getting ignored and/or abused in school curriculum's and by parents. And this seems to be one more occasion where anything over 20 years old is treated as antediluvian compost, to be ignored. And thus ignoring any lessons or wisdom to be gained therein. The present makes so much more sense if one understands the past. In fact, in many ways, that's the only way to make sense of it is to understand where it came from. That's too often ignored now, (check any political reporting or commentary in the Washington Post or on your nightly news cast for examples).  This list just strikes me as another example of that virginal view of events.

*I would argue that my generation of Baby Boomers, for the most part don't believe this. We grew up with knowledge about and respect for our parents' tales of the Great Depression, WWII, etc. My education certainly involved immersion in the 18th and 19th centuries, at the very least.  However, while not believing that the Universe began with us, some of our members do seem to think that it Ends with us...

The Hunt For The Butt Slasher Intensifies!

The War of 1812 - The Final Casualty

Headline of the Day...

Today's Forecast: Cloudy

Air Swimmers

Fun stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Margrete!)

Happy Birthday John Polidori!

A reasonably interesting gothic writer. And could probably be argued that he created the modern (English) vampire.

Happy Birthday Ronnie Gilbert!

Happy Birthday Buddy Holly!

Genius. Essential.

Happy Birthday Chrissie Hynde!

Happy Birthday Grandma Moses!

Happy National Acorn Squash Day!


Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Black Sabbath performs Supernaut

So cool....

fanvid for Red Lorry Yellow Lorry performing Train Of Hope

Great song by a highly under-rated band. 

fanvid for Big Star performing September Gurls

It seemed appropriate.  A minor classic.

fanvid for The Doors performing Alabama Song

This one's for you, Scott....

Wreckless Eric performs Whole Wide World

Wonderful song by one of the great pub rockers from the legendary Stiff Records, (Remember their motto:  "If It Ain't Stiff, It Ain't Worth A Fuck".  Does anyone but me even remember this guy?

The Return of Eerie Comics

This has been announced before - with nothing to show for it. But I remain cautiously optimistic.

Today's Metro atrocity

They're all Class.....

An interview with Karlos Borloff of Monster MadHouse

One of our great local horror hosts. Chaotic, fun, wildly amateurish, with occasional flashes of brilliance. For most, I know that it's an acquired taste, at best - but I love these public access shows. They are truly done for the love of it, and that comes through. I much prefer the honesty and shortcomings found in these efforts to most of the slick and hyped crap on regular TV. These guys are cool.


New X-Files movie on the way?

Cartographers of the Fantastic

Neat-O! Needless to say, these type activities have more than a little in common with the best role playing game campaigns....

RIP John Cullen

Another interesting footnote to the war, and an example of how even relatively ordinary people in relatively unglamorous positions can make a major difference in a massive conflict.

French Loaf

The wussiest Englishman

Poor lil' snowflake....

Scottish Population Control

Looking for love in all the wrong places...

The smallest motor

Pretty neat!

Indiana Samurai

Happy Birthday to The Phantom of the Opera (film)

Great movie. Premiered on this date in 1925.

Happy Birthday Max Schreck!

(some sources list his birthday as 6/11)

Happy Birthday Paul Roland!

One of my faves. Brilliant. And absolutely unknown in the States.

Happy Birthday Lafayette!

Happy Read A Book Day!

Monday, September 05, 2011

fanvid for Jim Croce performing Time In A Bottle

And so, this is it, the end of Summer, (we can quibble about the Equinox making it official). For me, it's been a Season of successes and failures, of great joys and sadness. And sometimes, just muddling through. Which is to say that it was like most Seasons. But I'm feeling particularly tired and old on this cusp. And Jim's song comes to mind. See ya tomorrow...

Happy Labor Day!

Tomorrow (9/6), TCM is showing all horror/monster movies!

fanvid for Sly & The Family Stone performing Hot Fun In The Summertime

Old friends, and long-time followers of this humble blog will know that this tune holds a special place in my heart.  It captures both the laid back feel, as well as the romantic connotations and connections that meant so much in my (our) youth.  It gives us the anticipation, and the (grudging) acceptance, of what exists in that period we call Summer.  I consider it THE perfect song to begin and end the Season, ever since it was released in '69, and have made a point of listening to it each Labor Day since then.  So should you.  40+ years later, it still speaks to me. 

Happy Birthday to Second Hand Lion!

A wonderful (and criminally under-rated) movie.  Premiered on this date in 2003.

Happy Bob Newhart!

Genius.  Essential.

Happy Birthday Diana Quinn!

Lead singer of Tru Fax & The Insaniacs, one of my fave local groups.  Wonderful!

Happy Birthday Al Stewart!

One of my all-time favorites.  Genius.

Happy National Cheese Pizza Day

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Dophins and Death

Fascinating. There's quite a bit of anecdotal information on elephants, as well. As stated in the past, I think that the old formula in regards to mental capabilities and states, with humans on one side and animals on the other, is slowly being torn apart. We're going to see much more graduated and nuanced definition and descriptions of what's going on in our brains and mental processes - and how they are sometimes (partially, at least) shared by other species.

(Thanks for the link, Infidel753!)

And more mud on Chamberlain

Nevy really was an idiot.

RIP Scott Shafer

The name won't mean anything to the majority of you reading this. And the obituary really won't add much. But if you were around NoVa in the 70's, Shafer (that's how we always referred to him) was a minor legend - one of those larger-than-life characters where fact and fantasy mix and create story after story. Those of us who hung out with him always seemed to come away with a new story we could regale others with, later on. This was the 70's, and I'm not saying everything that happened was something you'd be proud of or even want others to ever find out about. Drinking expeditions to Gtown, parties at William & Mary and throughout NoVa, the girlfriends, the tricks and practical jokes, the confrontations, the bluster and bellowing throughout it all - I chuckle even as I type this. It's hard to describe Shafer, maybe a very smart and intellectual version of John Belushi's character from "Animal House" might be a step in the right direction; but he was more charming (when he wanted to be). You just knew when you went out with him for a night on the town, there was about an equal chance of glory or a jail cell at the end of it. (Like I said - it was the 70's...). Bartenders and waitresses loved or hated him, sometimes simultaneously. His was the loudest and most laugh-filled section of the bar, I can assure you. He could be outrageous, or outrageously funny. It was a craps shoot, sometimes. But there'd always be a new tale to tell afterwards - talking his way out of an arrest, locking a restauranteur out of his own bathroom, dramatically begging (on his knees) forgiveness from some girlfriend's mother, and on and on.
And, as I've implied above, Shafer wasn't a saint. The "trickster' aspects of his personality could sometimes veer into the cruel or the stupid. One disadvantage of a big personality like that is one can sometimes overplay a hand. There were more than a few hurt feelings in the man's wake.
But he could also be quite a good friend, helping folks out of jams, smoothing over a rough situation in a bar, etc. He could twist an argument around with professional ease. He'd of made a good lawyer for the ACLU, I think.
He enjoyed playing the game of Monopoly. He also gleefully cheated like a MoFo - and you didn't care. I would never play him in poker...
I've not seen Scott in close to 30 years. We re-connected by email just a few years back and corresponded a few times a year. He'd told me about his illness, but as recently as two weeks ago had left me with the impression that he was getting better. Just like Shafer to play one last trick on me. I'll miss him, and can only end with the famous line from Hamlet:
"He was a man, take him for all in all,
I shall not look upon his like again."

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Elvira Bloopers


Almost forgot! The Virginia Scottish Games are going on this weekend!

Stephen King's "Mold From Hell"?

Curious story...

It's Just A Flesh Wound!

Sorry Pal, but you're right out of a Monty Python skit.

nazis in Greenland!

I just found out about this little tidbit of WWII trivia. Fascinating. I had no idea that they had one or more teams up there. Supply and insertion must have been a real challenge. Will have to do some more research.

Papa Was A Rolling Stone...

The events in this great song by The Temptations took place on this date.

Anniversary of the Signing of the Treaty of Paris

In 1783.  From the British point of view, one might consider this American Independence Day.

Friday, September 02, 2011

fanvid for Lee Michaels performing Do You Know What I Mean

Wonderful tune. Was a hit around this time in '71. Lee should've been more successful....

fanivd for Looking Glass performing Jimmy Loves Mary-Anne

A wonderful example of early 70's Top 40 Pop. If I remember correctly, this was just beginning to climb up the charts (quickly) around this time in '73. I really like this.

Bob Seger's video for Night Moves

A classic end-of-Summer song.  Bob understands.

School's Back In - and Alice Cooper does the best commercial - EVER

Lennon's video for Nobody Told Me

It's weird how things sneak up on you.  I didn't think much of this song when it came out; but now I really like and identify with it.  Strange days, indeed.

The Ultimate "Do Not Enter" Sign

My next t-shirt[0]=tags&ga_search_query=cthulhu&ga_search_type=all&ga_facet=

Band Name Conflicts

This has been going on for decades.  Doo-Wop has been ravaged by it.  And there was at least one fake Steppenwolf touring back in the mid 70's.

Reminds me of the old story..."He accidently fell on the knife 11 times..."

Bruce Busking!

Fun stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Erik!)

The "Your Face On A Grilled Cheese Sandwich" Facebook App

Gestapo Fashion Is Back "In" For the USSR*

*That's intentional on my part...

Space Hotel Vacation in 5 years?

Happy National Beheading Day!

Happy (official) VJ Day!

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger & Trinity perform Wheels On Fire

Made famous as the theme song to Ab Fab, I just love their cover of this tune. 

Little Richard performs Good Golly Miss Molly

Ladies and Gentlemen, the Queen of Rock'N'Roll.  The very personification of how truly revolutionary Rock was.  I mean, one minute you're listening to Perry Como, Mitch Miller, and Andre Kostelanetz lulling you into a stupor.  And the next minute, this Black Transvestite had grabbed you by the lapels, is shaking you mercilessly, and screaming in your face how his girlfriend loves to Fuck.  It was like Martians had landed.

The Happenings perform See You In September

Seems appropriate, given the date...

Black Sabbath performs Paranoid

A Classic. I don't know if it's possible to describe how much of a hammer blow this band was to rock'n'roll when they released those first couple of albums.  Absolutely amazing and Essential.

Snyder wasn't the Redskins' First Asshole-In-Chief

It's also interesting to see how in love with him the whole NFL was.  One more in a long list of reasons why I hate and mistrust pro sports.  

The Wide World of Sports

I believe we have an Olympics contender, here.

We're #1! We're #1!

I couldn't be prouder! Of course, I'd like to point out in all fairness that the list's Top 10 Cities, doesn't have a single real city in it.... I mean, I am a HUGE fan of Ft. Collins - love the place, really. But it's not a city. And comparing it to places like DC is truly a matter of apples and oranges...

Death & Taxes

I guess this broadens the definition of "Meter Maid"....

Turtle Traffic at JFK

Fun stuff!

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)

The cutting edge of Marketing

Two things:  First of all, I guess they've cornered the depressed alcoholic pre-suicidal Mother's demographic pretty well.  Secondly, I have to agree with the interview - mixing tequila, (or much of anything else) with a good cab is absolute sacrilege.  And everyone knows that triple sec is not for downing at any time of day.  It's just for mornings....

(Thanks for the link, Mathew!)