Archive for the ‘weird’ Category

Build Your Own Electric God!

Thursday, October 16th, 2014

Not many people read Frankenstein and think “Hey, what a swell idea! I should try that!”

But John Murray Spear was not an ordinary man. Nor did he think so small as to merely attempt to create a living creature with electricity. No, Spear thought much bigger than that.

He wanted to use electricity to build his own God.

Spear was a former Unitarian minister who had been driven out of more than one church for his strange ideas (oh those straight-laced Unitarians and their rigid dogmas!) who took a turn toward spiritualism right after the Fox sisters started toe-tapping shenanigans. In 1853, supposedly following the instructions of a cadre of spirit guides (including Benjamin Franklin) he called the “Electricizers,” Spear and his followers began construction of his his electrical messiah, dubbed “New Motive Power,” on a hilltop in Lynn, Massachusetts.

“From the center of the table rose two metallic uprights connected at the top by a revolving steel shaft. The shaft supported a transverse steel arm from whose extremities were suspended two large steel spheres enclosing magnets. Beneath the spheres there appeared [..] a very curiously constructed fixture, a sort of oval platform, formed of a peculiar combination of magnets and metals. Directly above this were suspended a number of zinc and copper plates, alternately arranged, and said to correspond with the brain as an electric reservoir. These were supplied with lofty metallic conductors, or attractors, reaching upward to an elevated stratum of atmosphere said to draw power directly from the atmosphere. In combination with these principal parts were adjusted various metallic bars, plates, wires, magnets, insulating substances, peculiar chemical compounds, etc… At certain points around the circumference of these structures, and connected with the center, small steel balls enclosing magnets were suspended. A metallic connection with the earth, both positive and negative, corresponding with the two lower limbs, right and left, of the body, was also provided.

Once it was given life, New Motive Power was supposed to usher in a new era of heaven on earth.

After 9 months, they tried to give it life. Let me spoil the suspense for you: Didn’t work, though Spear claimed it did twitch feebly for a few minutes. Later it was supposedly torn apart by a mob of enraged townspeople.

Spear spent the rest of his life promoting spiritualism, free love, and socialism. (Speaking of gods that failed…)

I wonder if anyone has written the steampunk horror story where Spear succeeded, only to discover that building an electrical god based on instructions received from spirits turns out to be a really bad idea

Trailer for Terry Gilliam’s Zero Theorem

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

So the trailer for Terry Gilliam’s forthcoming Zero Theorem is out:

It’s the science fiction dead end job loser virtual reality physics dating sim you’ve been waiting for!

Could be epic, or an epic train wreck…

The Day of the Dead Memes

Friday, November 1st, 2013

Here, on the Day of the Dead, it’s time to remember those who were once briefly (if inexplicably) popular, but which have now largely passed from our consciousness.

I’m speaking, of course, of dead memes.

Once they roamed wild and free across the Internet, but now these memes are largely dead in popular culture. Consider this a Whitman’s Sampler of the once-popular memes.

Dead Memes

The Dancing Baby

This computer-generated dancing baby was one of the first Internet memes, so popular it evidently showed up on an episode of Single Female Lawyer Ally McBeal. (Kids: Ask your parents what an “Ally McBeal” was.)

Mahir (I Kiss You!!!!)

In the early days of the Internet, people started putting up home pages willy-nilly with only a basic understanding of HTML and little-to-no taste or guiding aesthetics. It was a different era, when Geocities roamed the land.

Into this era stumbled Mahir Cagri, a Turkish man with diverse interests and a shaky grasp of English. “I like music , I have many many musicenstrumans my home I can play. I like sex.”

If you had an email address in 1999, chances are pretty good someone forwarded you Mahir’s page…

Hamster Dance

Basically rows of animated gifs of cartoon hamsters dancing to a silly, sped-up song. There were many offshoots and parody pages as well. I remember an “Objectivist Dance” page with animated dollar signs…

Bert is Evil

A website that claims Sesame Street‘s Bert is an agent of historical calumny, and has the photoshops to prove it.

Briefly flared into worldwide consciousness after 9/11 when radical Muslims incorporated an image of Bert with Osama Bin laden into a street sign supporting the terrorist.

All Your Base

Are belong to us.

Domo-Kun

A Japanese plush mascot chasing a kitten in divine retribution for your Onanistic sins.

Badger Badger Badger

A short animation of badgers, mushrooms, and snakes set to self-referential music, in an infinite loop. The surrealist Internet hit of 2003.

David After the Dentist

Woozy little kid gets filmed after dental surgery. Hilarity ensues.

Boxxy

Teenage girl makes video. 4Chan gets hold of video. Flamewar so epic that 4Chan grinds to halt ensues.

So look on these dead memes, ye mighty lolcats and ponies, and know that one day you too will pass into obscurity…

See also: Charles Mackay’ Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

Guillermo Del Toro Simpsons‘ Couch Gag is Awesome

Saturday, October 5th, 2013

This came out two days ago, and already has over 6 million hits, but I still thought Guillermo Del Toro opening couch gag for The Simpsons forthcoming “Treehouse of Horror” episode was too awesome (and too full of SF/F/H references) not to share.

Hat tip: Hank Wagner’s Facebook feed.

Halloween Scares: Uninvited Guests

Friday, October 4th, 2013

Hey, remember the spider-man of Denver?

In 2008 in Japan, a man found that a homeless woman had been living in his home for almost a year.

Given she was Japanese, I assume she was a very polite, quiet creepy visitor living in his home.

Hey, how much crawlspace do you think there is in your home?

And now, a completely unrelated image:

Alice and the Lizard People

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

You’ve probably heard of Alice Walker, author of The Color Purple and the fringe SF book The Temple of My Familiar.

What you may not have heard is that she’s a fan of David icke, he of the shape-shifting lizard people.

And Ms. Walker is evidently a believer:

Earlier I wrote that David Icke reminded me of Malcolm X. I was thinking especially of Malcolm’s fearlessness. A fearlessness that made him seem cold, actually, though we know he wasn’t really. All that love of us that kept driving him to improve our lot; often into quite the wrong direction, but I need not go into that. What I was remembering was how he called our oppressors “blue eyed devils.” Now who could that have been? Well, we see them here in David Icke’s book as the descendants of the reptilian race that landed on our sweet planet the moment they could get a glimpse of it through the mist that used to cover it (before there was a moon). No kidding. Deep breath! Yes, before there was a moon! (Oh, I love the moon; can I keep it? Please?). Anyway, there they came, these space beings (we’re space beings too, of course, not to forget that). But they looked…. different than us. And they were.

They wanted gold and they wanted slaves to mine it for them. Now gosh, who does this remind us of? I only am asking. You do the work. Apparently their own planet needed this metal to continue its, apparently, long life. Credo Mutwa, Zulu shaman – and I am on my knees here in gratitude that he held on long enough to tell us about this – calls them the Chitauri, which has become my favorite word of all time (well, of this time that I’m learning all this): my partner and I go around saying Oh, Chitauri, whenever we get a glimpse of one or two of the Chitauri offspring, aka Illuminati bloodline families and their puppets, on the telly. It’s quite the stress reliever, just knowing what we’re looking at. And I like saying “telly” too, because it sounds so English and David Icke-esque.

It’s an amazing book, HUMAN RACE GET OFF YOUR KNEES, and reading it was the ultimate reading adventure. I felt it was the first time I was able to observe, and mostly imagine and comprehend, the root of the incredible evil that has engulfed our planet. A lot of it is how shall we say: shocking, beyond belief (but not really, if you don’t get too scared), stunning, profound. The deconstruction of language is breathtaking, the interrogation of symbols startling. Magical, in a way. I kept going: Oh, so that’s why…. You will too.

The Reptilian space beings whose hybrid (part human, part reptile) descendants make our lives hell in Paradise were blue eyed devils to Malcolm X, the devil himself to my Christian parents, who never talked about eye color, which I think was not only prudent but wise, although they seemed clear enough about his sex, and as demons in many other religions, including the non-religion, Buddhism, where the advice is often to invite them in until they go away. But maybe these were other kinds of demons. Not the ones controlling not just you, but everything.

Sorry, I’m still in the “beyond belief” camp.

In a more recent post, Walker expresses enthusiasm for Icke’s new 24-hour international news network.

(In the video Icke says he’s crowdsourcing his new network, called The People’s Voice, and, in fact, he’s raised over £300,000.)

Well, we all have our flaws. I enjoy truly crappy Sci-Fi original movies like Sharknado. Alice Walker believes in shape-shifting lizard people who rule the world and oppress black people.

It’s always something…

Reptoids Among Us

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013

I assume you’ve heard about the shape-shifting reptoids that, according to David Icke, rule our world.

What you may not have heard was that Icke was accused of antisemitism by the Canadian Jewish Congress, who allege that his reptoids are just thinly disguised Jews. Icke, for his part, asserts that no, when he says shape-shifting lizard people from outer space control the world, he means shape-shifting lizard people from outer space.

So recently I got the bimonthly Angie’s List newsletter. And guess what’s on the cover?

Now you could say that artist merely draws unusually pointy people, and that it’s just a coincidence that his door-to-door reptoid looks stereotypically Jewish.

Or you could say that he’s part of the conspiracy

The Infowars Dating Service

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

No, really.

But what I want to know is: How can you be absolutely sure that they won’t set you up with a Reptoid?

(Hat tip: Dwight.)

My Review of John Dies at the End is Now Up

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Over at Locus Online.

Shoegazer Sunday: No Joy’s “Pacific Pride” (plus the Czech film Daisies)

Sunday, November 4th, 2012

Today’s dose of Shoegaze comes to you from all-girl Canadian Shoegaze duo No Joy for their song “Pacific Pride.”

Interestingly, their video seems to be taken entirely from the 1966 Czech surrealist/absurdest film Daisies, which I was previously unaware of, but which seems to have quite a cult following. It shows up on the list of 1,001 movies to see before you die (which is a pretty good list), and looking at clips, it’s tempting to say that acid arrived in Czechoslovakia a year before the Summer of Love, as it looks pretty trippy, a film where the sixties became The Sixties. It also appears to be part of the Criterion collection Eclipse Series 32: Pearls of the Czech New Wave.

I think I’m going to have to see this some time.

The whole film is available on YouTube so, hey, here it is.

Looks like you’ll need some 3D glasses for part of it…