Monthly Archives: February 2015

The Special Snowflake Report: Vampires in Their Own Words

Vampires in Their Own Words-coverHigh school is a tough time for everyone. The stakes are high, the workload is heavy, and the social strata are more complex than ever. Preps, jocks, goths, scene kids, band geeks, weeaboos–subgroups upon subgroups uncatalogued by even the most ambitious of anthropologists. Where do you fit in? How do you stand out? Why are you so good at back rubs?

Vampires in Their Own Words is an inadvertent expose on an adolescent coping strategy that can be summarized thus: when no niche is special enough, create your own. Contained in this book are pieces by nearly two dozen people who claim to be actual vampires. Under the guidance of editor Michelle Belanger of House Kheperu, these brave souls join forces to educate us poor mundanes on the intricacies of vampire life. Whether you believe their stories or not, one thing is certain: they are so much more unique than you.

Oh to be mundane!

They envy your unoriginal pre-fab life. Really they do.

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Retro Moral Panic: HALLOWEEN AND SATANISM

There is more to Halloween...much more!Great news, everyone: my box of stupid books arrived yesterday! That means the next few weeks will be an orgy of bad writing, insane screes, and my attempts to summarize it all in a comprehensible manner. I thought we’d kick things off with this book, which hails from the late 1980’s and really looks it.

HALLOWEEN AND SATANISM Cover

Don’t worry, I didn’t actually pay ten dollars for this.

HALLOWEEN AND SATANISM–a fitting title for a jaunty romp through the annals of late-twentieth-century evangelical fear mongering! If you were alive during the late 80’s and early 90’s, you may remember the media waxing horrified about Ouija boards, D&D, and Satanic sex cults that upholstered their altars with flayed baby flesh. If you’re too young to have experienced those days, or have spent too much time drinking to forget them, this post ought to refresh your memory.

The co-authors of HALLOWEEN AND SATANISM are Joan Hake Robie, president of the publishing company that released the book, and Phil Phillips, a guy who once had a bad time at a haunted house and now wants to ruin Halloween for everybody. If you think I’m misrepresenting his motivations, that’s only because you haven’t read the first chapter of HALLOWEEN AND SATANISM.

If this is Halloween, who needs it?

“Wow,” you might be thinking. “Phil Phillips is a baby.”

And you’re absolutely right. He is a baby. A giant baby. If he were any more of a baby, a Satanic cult would baptize him, cut his head off, stick it on a black wafer, and ask it spiritual questions. (More on that later!) Phil Phillips is such a sucky infant that he felt the need to pathologize fear itself. Hence the central message of the book:

Fear Is Not of God

You read that right. Fear isn’t godly. Despite its seeming naturalness and obvious evolutionary utility, fear is a manifestation of Satan himself. If you ever feel fear, you’re giving in to Satan. If you purposely seek fear out–say, by visiting a haunted house–then congratulations! You’ve basically just thrown yourself on the devil’s sweaty loins. Let’s hope he’s a gentle lover.

Halloween is all about being scared, which makes it the ultimate Satanic holiday. How did we wind up enthralled to such a dark-sided tradition? Phillips and Hake Robie are here to give you the low-down.

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Announcement: Sky Pirate Wins SFR Galaxy Award!

Last week, I mentioned that I was doing voice acting and production assistance on The Misfit Fleet, a radio program written by my friends Finnegan O’Riordan and Maggie Roberts. Right after I made that post, Sky Pirate: Safe Harbor–the novel on which The Misfit Fleet is based–nabbed itself a SFR Galaxy Award for Best Transgender Hero. Congrats to Finnegan and his creation. I’m proud to be a part of it!

Sky Pirate: Safe Harbor
That’s all for this weekend. I ordered a whole mess of really stupid books off Amazon today–Satanic Halloweens, a real-life priest who thinks he’s a vampire hunter, the occultic influence of D&D, the most offensively-titled self-help tome EVER–so expect lots of equally stupid reviews soon. Till then, adieu!

Puberty Books of the Damned: So You Want to Be a Model?

Brace yourselves; it’s TEENWORKS time!

But first, something fun: I am lending my voice to The Misfit Fleet, a new podcast created by¬† my friends Finnegan O’Riordan and Maggie Roberts! The Misfit Fleet is a steampunk series following the comic misadventures of a band of sky pirates. Something I really like about it is that it features loads of gay and transgender characters. Another thing I like is that my character, Captain Jackson Jeffries, is a bit of a dipshit. Everyone knows the dumb characters are the most fun to play. Misfit Fleet ProductionsListen to the first episode here. And listen to me try to pronounce “Finnegan O’Riordan” here. (“Fusspot O’Reacharound” was my personal contribution, and one I’m very proud of.) Now, on to the WORKS of the TEEN.

Fashion Advice

The writers of TEENWORKS included a lengthy section on fashion that I’ve mostly skirted till now, since there’s not a lot to say about it. It includes such helpful tidbits as: “Berets are fast becoming a staple of every teen’s autumn and winter wardrobe,” and “Great news…there are pants for everybody!” Eye-opening stuff. However, I seriously doubt you want to take fashion advice from the people who bring you these get-ups.

Fancy dress

Gold pants + David Bowie mullet = TIMELESS

Mickey Mouse outfit

Where do I even start.

Snowpant Leg Warmers

Leg-warmers made out of snowpants material were once a thing. Aren’t ya glad?

So You Want to Be a Model?

Imagine you’re a teen. If you’re actually a teen, imagine you’re an even teenier teen. You have your mullet, your snowpants leg-warmers, and your unreasonably large Mickey Mouse shirt. You look cute. You feel cute. So cute, in fact, that you’re considering starting a career based around your cuteness. You want to be a model. So You Want to Be a Model?When they say that “modeling has a down side,” what they actually mean is “you have a down side. Loads of down sides. Keep your day job and shovel some more of those cake pops into your face, you disgusting boo hog.” Modeling, you see, has some rather stringent requirements. Modeling: General Requirements“The emphasis today is on natural beauty,” they say, before listing a whole bunch of specs 99% of women will never be able to obtain the natural way. At a bare minimum, It’s going to require a pact with Azathoth, who will probably make you eat a baby or six. But maybe I’m just bitter. Maybe I’m exaggerating the narrow aesthetic standards of the modeling industry because I’m too lazy to achieve them–at least, the natural way. There is this modern marvel known as Photoshop…

11 to 23 years old

Shit.

Twenty-three passed me by a year or two…or three…or five…ago. There’s not a lot I can do about that, unless I falsify a lot of documents. Oh well. Let’s move on to the next thing. 5'7" to 5'11"All right, that’s not so bad. I’m already five-six-and-a-half, which looks like this: Avion's wedding I just need to lengthen those legs a leeeeettle beet. Take it away, CS4! Longer legsThere we go. Let’s look at the next requirements. WeightAgain, I’m close. Depending on how hard I’m period-ing, I’m anywhere from five to ten pounds too heavy. Let’s shave a bit of that excess fat off.

Skinnier

I’d go further, but there’s only so much liquifying an image can survive.

So far, so good. What’s next? FaceNo fair, TEENWORKS–that’s like seven requirements! These are harder to meet, too. My face is, to put it charitably, somewhat less than ideal. I’ve got tiny eyes, a regular nose, acne, and a small mouth. All I’ve got going for me, from a modeling perspective, are a high forehead and high cheekbones, though you can’t see the latter under all the baby chub. So, let’s see. Enlarge the eyes. Shrink the nose. Widen the mouth. Delete some chub. And hell, might as well raise the forehead a little more while we’re at it. And voila!

THE HORROR

Huh.

That sure is…something. On second thought, maybe I’ll leave this one to Azathoth.

Shitty Photoshop

Nailed it?