Wednesday, September 30, 2009

old hag phenomenon


i realize that this time of year, what with kids going back to school and the days getting shorter (and shorter and shorter, doesn't it seem...?), that it's easy to forget doing a little something fun for yourself--and for us! this is just my quiet little reminder to grab yourself a little "me time" and write up that short story or get the crayons out and do up that quick pin-up for our perhapanauts halloween contest! i have a few entries already and plan to start posting them next week for all to enjoy and admire! and maybe have nightmares over... so get on board the haunted hayride and show us whatcha got! it'll be fun!


i'm still pretty beat from all the reunioning i've been doing these past few weeks and so i went over to YOUR TRUE TALES at and borrowed this account of an old hag encounter.
for those of you not familiar, the old hag phenomenon--also known as the old hag syndrome--is one that has been recorded all over the world and usually involves the subject waking up in the middle of the night to find an old woman seated or standing beside the bed. sometimes there is a physical connection, most times not. the kick of it is, almost all reports describe this crone in exactly the same way; and ancient and dirty old woman, usually surrounded by a foul odor resembling death.
while most say that their encounters are terrifying and that the woman is sinister and menacing, some have claimed that she appears in order to assist or warn the subject of impending trouble.

anyway, here's scott's tale...

Old Hag Encounter
By Stephen Wagner,

I have had several old hag encounters, and they continue to this day. My first encounter occurred when I was 21 years of age. I was staying the night at my then-girlfriend's house in Pemberton Near Wigan in Lancashire in the U.K. It was a warm June night in 1983 and I had just settled down on the couch. The house was a two-bedroom house and Sandra's parents were soundly asleep in the room opposite hers. Sandra had a mongrel dog called Trixie that slept on her bed.

As I said, it was a warm night and the humidity was high, making sleep difficult. About a half hour after everyone had settled, I heard footsteps padding down the carpeted stairs. My first thought was that it was Trixie and I waited with my eyes closed for her to lick my outstretched hand. As I waited, I felt the cushions of the settee depress as if someone was sitting beside me. I remember grinning, thinking that Sandra had sneaked down stairs and my luck was in. I waited for a moment for the customary caress of my cheek, but when it didn't come I opened my eyes.

From the light of the street lamp that shone through the curtains directly outside, I saw that I was alone. Then, an overwhelming sense of terror and danger swamped every fiber of my being. My limbs became instantly stiff and paralyzed, as did my throat and mouth. I couldn't even murmur, and yet all my senses -- sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste -- were fully alert. The most obnoxious stench of putrefaction filled the room, making me gag, as if something big and dead was rotting and decomposing beside me. A huge and deadly weight seemed to crush my chest, making it impossible for me to expand my lungs in order to draw breath. But all-pervading was that overwhelming sense of menace and evil.

The whole episode lasted only moments, but it felt like a lifetime. Then, as suddenly as it started, it was gone. I stayed awake all through that night and prayed for dawn. I have had other attacks like this since, but now, because I'm used to them, I can instill an inner calm within myself and the attacks are less severe because of this.

if you wanna check out other personal accounts of encounters with the weird, head on over to where stephen wagner puts up an awesome selection of scary stories each month from folks just like us!
anybody got a story they'd like to share...?

gotta go~!
stuff to do!
smell ya later!

Monday, September 28, 2009

bear with me


well, i'm once again recuperating from a wonderful reunion this weekend and, to the spectator gang or the ex-spectators or the dutchess expatriates or whatever they're calling us, thanks so much for a great time! it was so good to see you all!

but i'm truly beat today...
and my stomach hurts from laughing so much--reunions are a great ab workout!

and one last time, wendy--thanks for all you did.


so with the fall/autumn and halloween season swiftly approaching, i am sitting here looking at a flurry of awesome-looking horror movies that are coming out and promising myself that i'm gonna get out to see at least a couple of them.
(and wishing that matt and christian lived just down the road...)

a month or so ago, matt sent the trailer to this "this-could-actually-happen" film, carriers, that matt cleverly, hilariously labelled, "captain kirk meets captain trips."

the posters pretty much spell it out, and the trailer will make you shudder a bit...

i'm also looking forward to seeing jennifer's body--although screenwriter/producer diablo cody said that it did miserably at the box office on it's first weekend out--and the 2012 movie called, uh...2012. (though i've heard that that one doesn't really engage much of the real controversy and prophecies of this looming date of change... just the big disaster parts of it.)

pandorum looks really creepy.

but the one i'm dying to see is this one, paranormal activity. yes, it was shot on a blair witch budget and, yes, it's being marketed with a cool voyeuristic viral ads--but so waht? man, i love that shot-on-video look--to me it makes it all seem realer, like you're right there! i loved cloverfield--shaky camera and all! it's being released very small, with surveys online to get you to demand it come to your home town...i'm betting--and hoping--that it'll come close, 'cause i can't wait to see this!

that's it for today!
i gotta go!
smell ya later!

Friday, September 25, 2009

does this blog make me look fat...?


not much to tell today. i've been trying to get a lot done this week so that i can go to my second reunion this weekend with a clear conscience, happy that i got all my work done. got a few more pages to finish on an ant-man script, but after that, i'm good to go.

while last week was my high school reunion, this week's is the reunion of a much smaller group--our old theater and school newspaper gang from college. most of us were theater jerks and we all worked on the school newspaper--the spectator--mostly 'cause it was a good place to hang out. this reunion was put together--single-handedly, i might add--by my friend, wendy, the same wendy that is now OUR wendy who graces us with her presence here on the blog! wendy made all the arrangements to make it happen and i can't wait to see everybody! thanks for doing all of this, wen--i know it's gonna be a great time!

so today's blog is really just a jumble, a bunch of images that i've grabbed off the internet here and there 'cause i thought they were cool for one reason or another. a couple of them i've had bouncing around on my desktop for months, not knowing what to do with them. but here they are--maybe you'll think they're cool too...?!

i love to see the power of nature, whether it be rain storms, snow storms, thunder storms, hurricanes, monsoons...this isn't a tornado, but a dust devil. i think the difference is that a dust devil starts from the ground up. i don't know. but it sure looks cool.

design/proposal for a futuristic, environmentally friendly floating city by belgian architect, vincent callebaut called lilypad. i'd go there.

back in the 60s, marx struck a line of goofy, wacky, deranged looking (a la big daddy roth's dragster racing rat fink) sports figures in plastic and they were all the rage. i saw this one--rocko the champ--on ebay and picked it up for less than the cost of shipping. my nephew tyler saw it and now it sits on the top shelf of his school locker, reminding him that he's a winner everyday. only, when i say winner, i mean loser. you're a loser, tyler, and you should read your uncle's freakin' blog! i read the stupid crap you write on your stupid facebook page! ass!
tyler took this picture of rocko and uses it as his facebook icon.

they just don't make movie posters like this anymore! no, i didn't save it for the sexy, deerskin bikini-clad cave babe. i love this poster 'cause it has all of the awesome qualities that made great B movie posters from the late 60s and early 70s groovy! the incredible artwork--you just don't see original artwork like that on movie posters...or in any advertising anymore...sad.)! that bold, striking title! that in-your-face challenge to SEE! SEE! SEE! listing all the many qualities of the picture! also, look at her hips!
they don't make hips like that anymore...!

if you own a computer and get email, i'm sure you've seen the guys who do the amazing street art/chalk art, creating these amazing optical illusions right there in the street. i liked this one 'cause it seemed a bit more ominous than most of those other shiny, happy, funny ones.


perhapanauts halloween contest!---update!
oh, so--just so you know--i received our first two entries in the perhapanauts halloween contest already...a story and a picture. i'll begin posting them as them come in starting on october 1st. so if you were thinking, "man, i really oughta do something for that." now's the time to start! can't wait to see what y'all send in!

have a great weekend!
smell ya later!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

writers and artists!! the perhapanauts halloween contest!!


while i'm currently more excited about my SECOND reunion in as many weeks coming up this weekend--i can't wait, either, wendy!!--i'm also trying to get work done on the final issue of casper, another issue of marvel adventures ant-man (ultron!!) (sorta...), the next arc of perhapanauts excitement (of course!), and a few stories for the comics version of the all-new, kid-tastic, cartoon smash sensation--The MARVEL SUPER HERO SQUAD!! you can catch the show on saturday mornings on cartoon network and see some of your favorite marvel characters in some of the silliest stories yet! it's lotsa fun and I'M having lotsa fun pretending i'm six again (really, not a big stretch...) and having the hulk use modok as a pinata! i'm honestly not sure which issues my stories will be in--but the first issue of the comic is in stores now!-- i'll letcha know when my own batch of silliness begins...!


at the Baltimore ComicCon!

it's only two and a half more weeks until the big ol' baltimore comiccon and i am also working on a presentation/panel with nick called SPOTLIGHT ON NICK CARDY! if you're going to be at the show, make sure you don't miss this once in a lifetime event! now, for the first time ever, YOU can hear the amazing story of this amazing artist's amazing career! nick will reflect on his early days as an artist, his years at dc, his work on classics like aquaman, the teen titans, and brave and the bold, and his process behind the creation of some of the most iconic and dynamic comic book covers the industry has ever seen!
come and help us celebrate the legend!

also, i told nick there'd be more people at his spotlight than at the one for neal adams...


from the 6th GRADE HUMOR Dept.

somebody should tell them...



so i mentioned a few weeks ago that we should have a halloween themed perhapanauts contest and open it up to both writers (short stories, poems, haikus) and artists (pin-ups, covers, short strips). a few of you responded positively, so let's make it official!

the rules are simple--create a halloween-themed piece featuring one or more characters from the perhapanauts. it can be scary or funny, creepy or crazy, trick or treat. we will run entries as they arrive, deadline for contest is wednesday, october 28th. a panel of judges will choose a winner in each category, the winner will receive a signed copy of the perhapanauts : triangle trade, a perhapanauts t-shirt, and some other perhapanauts loot. all are welcome to participate. have fun.
there ya go! get out those pencils and imaginations!
let's make this a scary halloween!


smell ya later!

Monday, September 21, 2009

montauk monster in panama...and more pig...


rich sent this over to me on friday and, though i had already posted the pig/prank story (more on that below), i just couldn't wait to share this breaking cryptid news!!!

check this craziness out--!!

New 'Montauk Monster' spotted in Panama
A mystery creature reportedly beaten to death by a group of teenagers in Panama is the subject of much speculation on the web.


The beast's hooked claw may indicate that it was a sloth
The beast's hairless, rubbery body and revolting features have drawn comparisons with the Montauk Monster, the still-unidentified animal photographed on a New York beach last year.
According to reports in Panama, the teenagers spotted the creature crawling out of a cave while playing in the town of Cerro Azul north of Panama City.

Fearing for the safety as it moved towards them, the youths claim they attacked the beast with sticks before throwing its lifeless body into a pool of water.
They returned later to take pictures of the corpse which were then posted on the website of the Central American country's Telemetro television station.
The images have since bounced around various cryptozoology blogs, with several explanations suggested for what it might have been.
A hooked claw visible in one of the photos has been cited as evidence for the popular theory that the creature was a sloth that somehow lost its hair.
The so-called Montauk Monster provoked intense speculation when photos allegedly taken at the Long Island resort where it was washed up were posted on Gawker, the US gossip website.
It was variously identified as a dead dog, a disused film prop and a marketing stunt, but its remains have never been found.


as far as the pig goes, here's the follow-up;
initially i said that mike and i were planning on leaving a greased pig in the school that night. ultimately we didn't grease the little football up 'cause we weren't sure that the grease we found would be safe for the little fella. also, we made arrangements with our friend, brent hobson, to have him 'offer' to take the pig back to leib's farm the next morning--so that the little guy's high school adventure wouldn't be too long (or, hopefully, too traumatic!)

so we got the pig in there and, though none of the faculty were hip to who did it, most of the student body were definitely in the loop and mike and ray and i were heroes for the next few days.

and, a few days later, mike went into the darkroom located at the back of the shop--industrial arts lab for all you kids out there--and he and our other pal, bernie o'callaghan, developed the pictures so that mike and ray and i would have one for posterity, to dig out at our, i don't know, high school reunion and relive those glory days. at some of the proofs came out a bit blurry and bernie threw it in the trash. mike had been meticulous about making sure that there was no evidence left behind. if you knew him, you'd know what i mean. if you knew can SO see him doing this.
eventually, the photography club advisor, mr. brady, discovered the discarded print and took it to the principal, mr. sacco.
who sat on it.
for months.
until graduation.

now i was never what you'd call an excellent student. i learned a lot in school and absorbed, apparently, a lot more than i ever knew, but i was more there for the fun and the socialization. so i was just as shocked as anyone when my name was called and i was asked to come to the front of the group. and then mike's name was called. and then ray's. and would you believe we actually stood there for a moment looking at each other with these dumb looks on our faces before we suddenly realized what it was we had in common...?!

"you may remember," our principal, mr. sacco, said as he addressed the curious crowd, "that our school was honored by a visit from a small pig back in january..."
the three of us just stood there, not sure what exactly was coming down. were we about to be expelled from school forever, now, on the very verge of graduation? booed and humiliated by all? worse, was mr. hryshko going to suddenly appear from the back of the tent (we had our graduation in a tent because somebody burned down our gym) and pummel us in a murderous act of revenge???

"ladies and gentlemen, i give you the three young men responsible for that visit."
a cheer went up from our classmates behind us. laughter and applause were quickly followed by a standing ovation, my dad making eye contact with mike's dad in a moment of true fatherly pride.* the three of us breathed a sigh of relief.

* unbeknownst to us at the time, our dads, as members of the high school basketball team way back when, had brought a cow into the school one night and took it upstairs, knowing that cows refuse to be led downstairs. a harness had to be made and the cow lowered out an upstairs window to get it home.

on the few occasions i had to speak with mr. hryshko following graduation, i tried earnestly to let him know that the pig in his classroom was never meant to be an affront to him in any way. i never felt completely successful in this. at the wake of a good friend's mother, some friends and i were talking with him as he went around the small circle asking what each of us were pursuing in college. when he came to me i tentatively said, "theater and communications."

"really, mr. dezago?", he said. "i would have thought that you would have gone into the field of agriculture or animal husbandry."

the other guys laughed so hard, we got glares from the other mourners.

i had a truly fantastic time this weekend with my old friends and high school classmates at our reunion, reliving that story and a bunch of others. i highly recommend that you go to yours when the time comes--i know a whole bunch of people who are going to regret missing ours in the next few weeks...



the answers to your
"five for friday"

1. who played the professor on gilligan's island?

russell johnson

2. what was the name of the blues brothers first album?

briefcase full of blues

3. what were the first names of the two czech wild and crazy guys, the festrunk brothers?

georg and yortuk

4. where should the reciprocating variable tumbler go?

up front, just above the primary lead tumbler.*
(*except in a yale guardsman where the variable tumbler is eliminated entirely.)

5. how did the principal find out about the pig...?

well, now you know...

happy monday!
smell ya later!

Friday, September 18, 2009

the senior committee on pranks


so, i'm talking with my friend, mike johnson, in study hall.
we're trying to decide what we were going to do for our (first) senior prank.
it had to be wild, it had to be crazy, and it had to be practical--no one gets hurt.
mike was the class president, i was the class...clown. we were great friends and big into saturday night live. (a year or so before that i had memorized and learned to recite steve martin's comedy bits word for word and had risen to the top in the high school comedy world.) when we were together, mike and i were the festrunk brothers, the outrageous czech guys who hit on all the foxes and said the word 'buttocks' a lot.
this time though, we were going to be the blues brothers, jake and elwood, on a mission from god--or maybe better, bluto and d-day...although, to tell you the truth, i think we were both belushi...

we agreed that a greased pig would be the best. getting into the school at night wouldn't be a problem. my dad had been a cop in the city when i was little and had confiscated a few sets of really nice lock picking tools over the years and had taught me how to use them. we talked to one of our friends who we knew worked on a farm and we asked him, very secretively, where a couple of young guys like us could find a piglet and if he'd be into helping us 'borrow' one from someone. that's how ray krumenacker got involved.

ray thought it would be a lot easier if he went and stole the pig alone--less chance for noise and the other pigs wouldn't get so riled up. so it was agreed that we'd meet him at 8:00. my only job was gonna be getting into the school, which ray was pretty skeptical about, mike said, you just bring the pig, we'll get him where he needs to go.
i can remember mike coming into my house, both of us dressed in dark clothes, our faces blackened like on hogan's heroes, and my father asking what we were up to. the less you know the better, we told him , and drove off into the night. i remember the blues brothers 'groove me' blasting on the radio as the headlights of mike's dad's volkswagen scirroco bounced off the puddles on ackert hook road, reflecting up into the trees, into the night, as we sang and laughed and yelled at each other in ridiculous eastern european accents.

we met ray at the predetermined location, he in a beat up volkswagen of his own. somewhere along the line, ray had picked up a couple friends of his, juniors, mark welch and albert curnan, who had been hitchhiking down the road. apparently, having a pig in a burlap bag in the back seat was too much for ray to keep to himself and the idea of picking these guys up and telling one of them to sit in the back with the pig was one of those can't pass up moments. ha! i woulda done the same thing.

now it was time for me to get us in and i was pretty confident...until i saw that the school had recently replaced the old kwickset locks with these brand new, state of the art, schlage 1150's, the lock that had the reciprocating variable tumbler in the back!! i didn't have a pick that was long enough to reach back there and for just a second i thought we were sunk. then i remembered that far in the rear of the school, outside the building, was a grating that was locked with a basic master lock i had tricked once or twice for kicks and knew that we had a way in.

telling ray--and mark and albert--to sit with the pig in the car out front and wait for us to come to the front door, we went around the back of the school and i popped the lock. unfortunately, it meant that mike and i had to get in through the cinder block tunnels--roughly about 2 feet high and three feet wide--that labyrinthed under the school, housing the big green iron water pipes. so like bronson in the great escape, we crawled the length of the school, roughly 300 yards, and came up in the boiler room.

it took forever.
we were sure that ray and they guys--plus our new little pal--would be long gone.

but they had faith.
we let them in, posed for a picture--mike was in the photography club and terrific photographer--and i picked the lock to the classroom we we going to leave him in. (i will say now, this was never meant to be personal on mr. hryshko. we just didn't want to leave the little guy running the halls of the school--a classroom would be a little more cozy--and we were just trying to figure out which teacher's reaction would be the best. mr. hryshko was the obvious choice.)

it was a good night.

back: me, mark welch
front: mike johnson, ray krumenacker, albert curnan
down front: a pig


i don't watch the news, i don't read the news--the only news i get is from jon stewart and that seems to be enough.

i don't watch or read it 'cause:
1.) the news is usually very depressing and at times will make you feel extremely powerless
b.) the big news agencies are all owned by major corporations now so you know it's gonna be "corporately edited"...

so i don't get the news and am usually pretty outta the loop.
but i do glance over the AP news i get on my yahoo home page and so i know what they'd like you to think are the top stories of the hour...
anyway, not being a news guy and not being up on all things current, i still would like to introduce this new feature i'm calling

this is where i will randomly select a photo from the news feed on any of the ones that come my way, and comment on it.
for example;

this is senator max baucus (D-Montana) who is currently on the finance committee looking into the american health care situation.

my comment:
he looks a lot like the professor from gilligan's island

and that's how that's gonna go.


"five for friday"

1. who played the professor on gilligan's island?

2. what was the name of the blues brothers first album?

3. what were the first names of the two czech wild and crazy guys, the festrunk brothers?

4. where should the reciprocating variable tumbler go?

5. how did the principal find out about the pig...?

i'm off to do reunion things.
have a great weekend!
smell ya later!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

night of the pig!


what kind of mood are you in?

if you're in the mood to see something that even i found incredibly disturbing, check out this wonderful story--with picture--of a crazy little parasitic isopod that lives in the mouth of other fish. (yes, i know, technically speaking isopd 's aren't fish, but it just rolled out so smoothly...) rich woodall hooked me up with this as i was eating my dinner last night. thanks, rich.

and for more fun, make sure that you go back and read the comments on the thread below the story--have a nice nightmare...

also, next to this story, see the snake that was found in china growing a foot out of one side...
some weird stuff here. really.


i said last week that i was going to try to avoid too much personal stuff here on the blog and focus more on the paranormal and pop culture, but this weekend is my big--and long awaited--high school reunion and i thought i'd share this little article from my small town's paper from january of my senior year.

Rhinebeck Gazette Advertiser--January
Students Go Hog WIld in Non-Kosher Stunt
What Rhinebeck high school teacher John Hryshko found in the classroom Monday morning was definitely not kosher and probably caused him to cry "foul!"
Bringing an apple in for teacher is a time honored tradition among students, but some prankster evidently thought he'd go one better and brought in pork chops, bacon, and fresh hams for Hryshko. The only trouble was, the meat was still on the hoof.
Hryshko opened the door Monday morning to find a pig in his classroom. From scattered pieces of evidence, school officials deduced that the pig had been there the better part of the weekend. Also in the room was a neighborly note saying that the pig had belonged to Carole Leib of Ackert Hook Road.
High School Principal Jerome Sacco said he expected senior class pranksters were at the root of the escapade and said he was conducting an investigation. He noted that senior prank season usually began about this time every year.
Hryshko has a reputation for being one of the more strict faculty members at the high school. But Sacco said it was hard to tell whether the prank had been directed specifically at Hryshko, since he is not teaching seniors this year.
The room was cleaned up within 30 miinutes of the discovery but it took another two periods to air out the room to the point where it could be used for classes, Sacco said.
The pig, who was returned to Ms. Leib, declined to comment on the episode.

that's all you really need to know for now...

tune in friday for part 2.

have a great wednesday!
smell ya later!

Monday, September 14, 2009

stop and listen



Washington, DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007. The man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time approx. 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.

4 minutes later:
the violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the hat and, without stopping, continue d to walk..

6 minutes:
A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

10 minutes:
A 3-year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.

45 minutes:
The musician played continuously. Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.

1 hour:
He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.

This is a true story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities. The questions raised: in a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made.... How many other things are we missing?



some of you might remember that i spent the first week of last month on the outer banks of north carolina in a huge beach house with my mom's side of the family for a wonderful family reunion. there were 26 people in the house, sharing meals, playing games, watching tv, and, of course, enjoying the sand, sun, and the sea!
my two cousins, heather and jessica, had their respective sons about a month apart from one another and so we had two 3 year olds scrambling around the house. heather's son, ben, is a wide-eyed, handsome boy, quiet and inquisitive, but ready to have big fun when the opportunity arises. jessica's son, tristan, is the devil. this kid hurled himself around that house like a dervish, plowing through games, activities, furniture, and people like they just weren't there. a force of nature and a clever one at that. tristan was constantly encouraging ben to follow him as they raced through the house together and it was all we could do the first day or so to tell them both that, if they jumped off the balconies, they'd probably die.
at one point, when he got bored, a malevolent gleam appeared in tristan's eye as he announced to ben that he was going to get his father. to ben this meant that tristan was gonna steal his daddy and make him his own, to which ben let out a long swooping, worried, "noooo." the two raced over to where ben's father, john, was sitting and tristan, being faster, wrapped his small arms around john's legs and declared--"I GOT YOUR DADDY!" to which, ben sat down and burst into tears.

i thought it was hilarious.
and i wonder if it'll have the same effect today when i say,
"hey, matt--i got your daddy!"


have a great week!
smell ya later!

Friday, September 11, 2009

whatcha gonna be for halloween...?



so, i know it's about a month and a half away and that i've been desperately trying to hang onto any last shred of summer i can find, denying autumn any purchase in my mind and heart...but inevitably the days are getting shorter, the nights a bit chillier, that crisp smell of apples and fall-time in the air...and halloween's coming. i'm saying this 'cause now's the time to start thinking about it, so it doesn't sneak up on you, so you don't get caught short and have to be a bum or a hobo or a ghost again. i wanna see some halloween photos this year, perhapa-fans!! we might even have a contest...


and speaking of contests...

so our pal and (oft-time booth boy) brian mulcahy and i were 'talking' the other day and we inadvertently came up with a cool idea...
brian is a writer as well and has been kind enough over the years to send me his various stories and scripts for my amusement and entertainment. the other day he sent me a perhapanauts story after i had told him that, now that the perhapanauts have assumed custody of the perhaps, the door is wide open for all kinds of wacky stories featuring our favorite cryptids. (the perhaps--if you will recall--is the nexus of all time and space, and provides access to any and all alternate realities. it is where every possible scenario you can think of--any many you can't--is alive and well and going on like nobody's business. anything can happen!)

so with that in mind, we were talking about maybe it would be cool to have, this halloween, instead of just a scary story contest, what about a perhapanauts scary story contest? what about inviting writers to send in their version of a scary story featuring one or more of the haps? what about posting artist's creepy halloween themed pin-ups of the perhapanauts?
anybody in?

let me know what you think and we'll get this party started!
could be fun!



dani sent me this yesterday...

The Jesusita Fire in Santa Barbara , CA a few weeks ago caused these two to take shelter together. The fawn is 3 days old and the bobcat about 3 weeks. The fawn came from somewhere in the fire and the bobcat from Carpentaria. They immediately bonded and snuggled together under a desk in the Santa Barbara County Dispatch Office for several hours.

Animal Planet is reporting the bobcat kitten was rescued near Arnold Schwarzeneggers ranch, where it was dehydrated and near death.
They rescued the fawn during last weeks wildfire. Although wild animals, especially of separate species, are never placed together due to regulations, in this emergency situation, they had no choice. During the mayhem of the fire, they were forced to put animals anywhere they could, since they had run out of crates large enough for the fawn. The kitten ran to the fawn, and it was instant bonding.


"five for the fab four!"

1. "...swaying daisies sing a lazy song beneath the sun..."

mother nature's son

2. "...i don't know
why you
should want to hide..."

you won't see me

3. "...changing my life with the wave of her hand..."

here, there, and everywhere

4. " you forever and forever, love you with all my heart..."

i will

5. "...the man in the mac said you gotta go back, you know they never even gave us a chance..."

the ballad of john and yoko

6. "...and when i touch you i feel happy inside..."

i want to hold your hand

7. "...i'm so glad that she's my little girl..."

i feel fine

8. "...and the banker never wears a mac in the pouring rain..."

penny lane

9. "...he wear no shoeshine, he got toe jam football..."

come together

10. "...if there's anything that you want, if there's anything i can do..."

from me to you

have a great weekend!
smell ya later!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

number 9. number 9. number 9.


so today is all about the beatles...

and why not?! with today's highly-anticipated release of the beatles:rock band coinciding with the reissues of the entire beatles catalogue on remastered cd, i am very very happy to give them a day! happy birthday, beatles!

i caught dhani harrison on the tonight show with conan o'brien last night and while i myself have had to swear off of video games (i can be a bit obsessive about these things and when you're a writer, you can't let yourself get sidetracked like that...oh, look...a comic book!!), they showed some bits from the video game's journey through the beatles career and it just looks amazing! dhani said that he's seen grown men cry playing it and i'm sure i would be right with them.

and a part of me really wants to play it--but...not really. i wanna watch it, wanna see what they've done and experience the excitement and the history as it unfolds all around me! it sounds very neat.

so for some fun, i thought i'd shake things up and lay down some fab four trivia today in celebration of the greatest, most influential band in rock and roll history. you might think you know the lyrics to all the beatles songs, but do you know them out of context? below are some lines from ten songs throughout their career--see what you can do...
(and i think it's only fair to say, kc, you are not allowed to compete...)

"five for the fab four!"

1. "...swaying daisies sing a lazy song beneath the sun..."

2. "...i don't know
why you
should want to hide..."

3. "...changing my life with the wave of her hand..."

4. " you forever and forever, love you with all my heart..."

5. "...the man in the mac said you gotta go back, you know they never even gave us a chance..."

6. "...and when i touch you i feel happy inside..."

7. "...i'm so glad that she's my little girl..."

8. "...and the banker never wears a mac in the pouring rain..."

9. "...he wear no shoeshine, he got toe jam football..."

10. "...if there's anything that you want, if there's anything i can do..."

have a great beatles day!
smell ya later!

Monday, September 07, 2009

see? this is what i'm talking about...


first of all, happy labor day, everybody!
hope you're spending it with family, maybe having a bar-b-que, and enjoying what has come to be regarded as the last hurrah of summer and the beginning of fall and the new school year.

so, in response to my "that's no chupacabra!" post the other day, rich (woodall) sent me this video of what the media is calling an "alien baby" caught two years ago in a farmer's trap in mexico.

you can catch a more detailed report of this strange creature on the history channel's monster quest episode entitled "flying humanoids," but here's the thing. they have the tiny, now somewhat mummified corpse of this creature and have (allegedly) taken dna samples for evidence and found that the creatures dna matches nothing known on the planet.
so they immediately label it alien.
it must be extraterrestrial.

how 'bout let's be scientific here and not just assume that it's from somewhere off-planet, huh? it could just be a species we haven't encountered yet. or a freak of nature. or, yeah, why not extra-dimensional?

never seen it before--must be from outer space.

(and, to me, this thing looks a lot more like the descriptions of a chupacabra that that dog...)

and here's a watercolor of choopie i did back in june at heroescon.

have a nice labor day!
smell ya later!

Friday, September 04, 2009

this is not a chupacabra.


i'll start out by stating that this is, obviously, my opinion.
i try very hard to be objective when it comes to all things strange and mysterious, but i am also very passionate about the subject.

so, anyway...
first off thank you to all my friends and perhapa-fans who thought of me immediately when they saw the fox news and cnn video clips of the texas taxidermist's "chupacabra' and sent me the links. i was inundated with them and appreciate that you thought "wow--i bet my pal todd would love this!" i do.

so keep them coming. should you see something on the news, in the paper, in your yard...i consider myself a paranormal investigator on the side (i'm even in the process of setting up a website with kieran to go public with my research group, northern dutchess paranormal. should have that up in a month or so...) and i'd love to take a look at whatever you've got or hear tales of whatever you've seen...

that said...this is not a chupacabra.

one of the more frustrating aspects of paranormal research is that people don't always take it seriously. the word cryptozoology, breaking it down to it's greek roots, means the study of hidden animals, and trust me when i say that there are countless scientists and doctors all around the world who have dedicated their lives to tracking down and investigating these elusive creatures. there are lots of studies and information about these cryptids--if people just take the time to do a little research of their own.

from wikipedia
"The most common description of Chupacabra is a reptile-like being, appearing to have leathery or scaly greenish-gray skin and sharp spines or quills running down its back.[20] This form stands approximately 3 to 4 feet (1 to 1.2 m) high, and stands and hops in a similar fashion to a kangaroo.[21] In at least one sighting, the creature was reported to hop 20 feet (6 m). This variety is said to have a dog or panther-like nose and face, a forked tongue, and large fangs. It is said to hiss and screech when alarmed, as well as leave behind a sulfuric stench.[21] When it screeches, some reports assert that the chupacabra's eyes glow an unusual red which gives the witnesses nausea."

though the chupacabra has been a part of the latin-american mythology for centuries, the creature really didn't pop up in the global consciousness until the mid-90s. a rash of bizarre attacks on farm animals and house pets created a stir in puerto rico that stumped local officials. the animals were killed in a particularly violent fashion and completely exsanguinated. odd, but odder still was the fact that the victims were found with but a single puncture wound--usually on the neck--with no sign of opposing trauma opposite the wound. (meaning that the animals was not held in a predator's jaws while it's blood was being drained.) descriptions of the creature led to this drawing by ufo investiogator, jorge martin, which was corroborated by all the the eye witnesses as being the thing they saw.


if you want to read a fantastic and comprehensive account of the incidents and the subsequent investigation, check out scott corrales' wonderful book, chupacabras and other mysteries.

sadly, because journalists don't have a great deal of respect for this area of investigation, they will quickly leap to the most available (or eagerly offered) conclusion without taking the time to do the research. so that when people in texas (or maine or whereever...) show up with some as-yet-unidentified canine, the media is quick to throw the label of chupacabra on it and use it as a teaser for their evening news cast.

that is a strange creature they have there in texas. and so far it seems that they've been unable to identify it properly. possibly it's been responsible for killing local livestock. it definitely appears to be canine to me. it does not in any way resemble previous reports of the chupacabra. maybe they could call it the devil dog.

i call it poor journalism.

have a great weekend!
smell ya later!

oh and ps--if you wanna see what a real chupacabra looks like...
i got your chupacabra right here.




Wednesday, September 02, 2009

betty and veronica


maybe that should be betty OR veronica?
when i was a kid, that was one of the choices on the list.
ginger or mary anne?
jeannie or bewitched?
betty or veronica?

but that's not what this blog's about.

over the past ten years or so, i've become a big archie fan. mostly stuff from the 60s and 70s--nostalgic fool that i am--and i've been lucky enough to have my pals, kc carlson and terry austin, gift me with their doubles or damaged copies. (i'm not so much collecting as absorbing--just soaking in the gorgeous artwork and joyful innocence that those stories...) terry was great friends with legendary archie artist, dan decarlo, and between terry and fred hembeck, i've learned the names of many of the other great--and often uncredited--artists who defined the gang back in the 40s, 50s, and 60s.

about four or five years ago, terry told me that archie was thinking about doing some more realistic stories, stories that are slightly more dramatic, rendered in a more realistic style. although i had always hoped to work on the classic archie comics, terry and i got excited at the prospect of getting a chance to play with the characters and once i mentioned this to mike, we got all revved up, not only dreaming of working on archie, but of teaming up with terry to have some real archie fun! i came up with a (jughead) story that i thought would be lots of fun and play right to mike's and my style, but, sadly, archie wasn't quite ready to try out this new concept.

jump to today and "the new look" archie is out on the stands. with artists like norm breyfogle, rick burchett, joe staton, and our own TERRY AUSTIN, archie and all the other residents of riverdale are being presented in a less-cartoony style in stories meant to be a bit more resonant and a little edgier.

and they're GOOD!

really good! i'm currently reading the "my father's betrayal" storyline in the betty and veronica digest--mostly 'cause terry got a bunch of comps and gave them to me, but here's the thing...whether i buy them off that rack at the grocery store or get them as a gift from terry--these archie digests are enormous! there is no other comic book out there today that gives you as much of a bang for your buck as the archie digests! with a cover price of $3.99, this thing is just PACKED with stories--the "new look" chapter is up front, but there are easily ten more stories in the pages that follow, drawn in that classic archie style that we all know and love! with each and every issue of the perhapanauts, craig and i try to fill all the extra pages with story or pin-ups or something fun, but these digests will give you hours of archie fun!

check 'em out!! they're really great! *

* (i will point out, however, that the editors broke the major rule in comics by making the mistake of blowing the story on the cover. as a writer, this is one of the things that will actually drive you over the edge. the writer, melanie j. morgan, spends an easy five pages cleverly building the suspense as to who is responsible for leveling eversgreen forest in riverdale--but the cover revealed the culprit before you even opened the book!! that ain't cool...)

mike did lend his pencils and style to these "new look" archie and jughead as we got psyched about maybe working on them...

and, like many of the projects mike and i had hoped to pursue, it wouldn't feel right doing it without him..
maybe someday.

(he's saying go ahead.)

happy wednesday!
smell ya later!

ps. and btw--betty.