Category Archives: Writing
Are you tired of having perfect skin?
Have you grown weary of all the compliments about your flawless complexion?
Do you watch your friends pop their pimples and wish you could join in on the fun?
Now you can, beautiful people, with new No-Activ solution!
Unlike Pro-Activ—a treatment designed to remove blotches, blemishes and acne over time—new No-Activ solution uses a complex balance of oils, greases and other toxins to not only restore these defects, but to start forming them overnight. By the time you wake up the next morning, you will be more hideous than you ever dreamed!
What’s more, new No-Activ will keep on working with each passing day, spawning pimples and deepening acne scars until not even your closest friends and family members will recognize you. And good luck getting out of that next traffic ticket or buying alcohol with your old driver’s license!
Another thing that sets No-Activ apart from that other skin treatment is the celebrity spokespeople. Instead of asking famous actors and musicians to share their stories and results, we let No-Activ speak for itself. And once you start using it and experience the satisfaction that comes with being butt-ass ugly, there can be no better spokesperson than YOU.
Your face will do all the talking. Believe me.
Actually, don’t believe me. Just listen to what some of our clients have to say. And don’t worry. None of them are in any danger of ever becoming rich or famous.
“Wherever I went, men always used to stare and gawk at me. I tried wearing baggy clothes, but that only led them back to my face and nothing changed. Then I started using No-Activ and the very next day, I couldn’t even get the guy at the drive-thru to look me in the eye! No-Activ is awesome!” –Jennifer, 35 (Newark, NJ)
“One time, my brother came home from work with the biggest pimple I have ever seen on his nose. I watched as he spent almost an hour squeezing and draining it, but I never got any pimples. At least not until I started using No-Activ. Now I don’t just get pimples. I get huge whoppers all over my face! Thanks, No-Activ!” –Ricardo, 18 (Richlands, NC)
“Most of my friends have families and I know it sounds bad, but I’ve never cared much for children. Yet anytime I go to visit, their kids latch onto me and I end up playing while everyone else is laughing and drinking wine. That all changed with No-Activ, though. The next time I went to visit, those same children took one look, peed in their pants and ran screaming into their bedrooms. It was great! Of course, no one really invites me over anymore, but I can live with that. No-Activ is the best! –Sue, 28 (Las Vegas, NM)
Still not sure if new No-Activ is right for you? Then ACT NOW and we’ll send you a 3-oz sample bottle for FREE!
It might take a few days to arrive, so feel free to start the damaging process by rubbing dirt, butter or even vegetable shortening on your face. This will only enhance No-Activ’s effects, but the real difference will come within 5 to 8 business days—perhaps more for our international customers.
Those of you in Vatican City have already been exposed to enough smoke to cause blemishes, so don’t bother placing an order. We don’t want to waste the stuff.
So don’t wait. Pick up the phone, give us a ring-a-ding-ding and order some No-Activ today!
As a special gift, be one of the first 100 callers and you’ll also receive the No-Activ nighttime face wrap at no extra cost!
Using special technology that we invented and—sort of—patented, the No-Activ nighttime face wrap hugs the skin and pushes our miracle solution deeper into your pores while you sleep. We guarantee that if… I mean when… you wake up, you’ll be so pleased that you won’t be able… sorry, won’t want… to take it off. It’s that good!
No-Activ even comes with a money-back guarantee. If you aren’t completely satisfied with No-Activ within the first 24 hours, return the unused and unopened product and get 100% of your money back.
Other than that it’s yours, so we hope you enjoy your purchase!
To order No-Activ—or to take advantage of our free 3-oz trial bottle—hit us up at 1-800-NOACTIV or check us out online at www.noactivfuckedmyfaceupgood.com. And be sure to follow us on Twitter @pizzaface.
We look forward to serving all you soon-to-be-ugly-bitches!
Side effects for No-Activ skin-damaging solution include headaches, blurred vision, loss of the sense of smell, rectal bleeding, bullying, bitch slapping from strangers on the street, frequent bowel movements—as well as an inability to control them—cold sores, canker sores, bed sores, crow’s feet, hair loss, impotence, unwanted pregnancy, testicular shrinkage, memory loss, hallucinations, suicidal thoughts, loss of appetite, bleeding gums and involuntary clenching of the vaginal muscles. Some have reported thoroughly enjoying this last effect, but they were mostly men and probably can’t be trusted.
This past weekend, my wife was returning from her sister’s house and noticed an unusual amount of activity one block from our home. An unusual amount of police activity.
Basically, there were cops everywhere.
As she crept by in her Subaru, one of the officers flagged her down and checked her license and registration. She asked what the problem was and without being too informative—Heaven forbid—he told her there had been a shooting.
Moments later, she told me about it.
After locking the doors and turning out a number of lights—precautionary measures in case some maniac was still on the loose in our neighborhood—we moved like cat burglars from one window to another, keeping an eye out and looking for suspicious activity despite all the blue lights reflected on the surrounding houses. I was confident no criminal would be stupid enough to hide near the scene of his crime, but you can never be sure.
After all, crime seemed like a good idea and you see how well that worked out.
The next morning, I received a text message from my brother asking if we were alright. He didn’t have any details, but the grapevine in our small town ensured that he heard about the shooting. I told him everything was fine and that it was probably some jackass who accidentally discharged a weapon in his home. We live in a good neighborhood and the surrounding area is rural-suburban—to coin a phrase—so I was sure it couldn’t be serious.
I was wrong.
A buddy of mine has friends who live in my neighborhood and one of them was close to the action that night. In fact, he arrived on the scene just before the police and recounted the story to my friend shortly thereafter. To protect his anonymity, I’ll call him Sam.
Several houses down from Sam lived Jim, a relatively young man who just went through a nasty divorce. His ex-wife (Linda) and her daughter (Tina) had moved out long ago and without wasting any time, Jim had started dating again. Not only that, but he quickly found a girlfriend who looked exactly like Linda and welcomed her into his home instead.
For a while, Jim was happy and life seemed to be back to normal. Then came this past weekend and it all turned to shit.
Saturday evening, Jim received a call from his former stepdaughter, Tina. She was coming over to pick up the last of her mother’s things and wanted to make sure he was home, which he was. Jim and his girlfriend Mary were spending a quiet night at home and honestly, she wanted Linda’s stuff gone as much as Jim did, maybe even more.
Jim told Tina it would be fine and a half hour later, she arrived. While Jim and Mary sat in the living room and watched television, Tina collected her mother’s knick-knacks. Then for some unknown reason, an argument broke out.
Jim and Tina got into it—probably because she was planning to take something that really belonged to him, or that he and Linda had purchased together (at least that’s my theory)—and eventually, Jim wandered off towards his bedroom.
When Jim reappeared, he was holding his pistol and aiming it at Tina’s head.
Two shots and Tina dropped to the floor dead.
She was followed a moment later by Jim, who put the gun to his own head and exercised his constitutional second amendment right for the last time (as many spontaneous gunmen are apt to do).
That’s right, ladies and gentlemen: a murder-suicide one street over from my own home.
What in the hell is this country coming to?
I suppose it could be worse. Poor Sam was walking home from a friend’s that night, passed Jim’s house and saw a woman vomiting in the bushes. As he approached her—actually Jim’s girlfriend, Mary—he glanced through the still-open front door and saw blood everywhere: on the walls, on the ceiling… everywhere. Then Sam realized who the woman was.
“Is everything okay, Mary?” he asked her with genuine concern in his voice. She struggled to respond through all the convulsing and dry heaving, but managed to speak.
“He killed her,” she told Sam. “He killed her.”
Sam immediately feared the crime may still be in progress and quickly asked for clarification.
“Who killed her, Mary? Was it Jim?”
Mary lowered her head, nodded and vomited again at the very thought of what she witnessed. Sam, on the other hand, was getting worried.
“Where is Jim now?” he asked the barfing woman, his eyes never leaving the door. “Does he still have the gun?”
Mary shook her head. “He’s dead, too. Jim shot himself.”
Around that time, the first responding officers arrived and quickly shuffled Sam away from the scene. He answered some questions, went home and called to tell my buddy. And today my buddy told me.
Although I am never surprised by violence—and have probably been desensitized to it in many ways—I must say it is shocking to have something so tragic and gruesome happen within 100 yards of my home, the same home where I live with my wife and child. These kinds of things are supposed to happen in bad neighborhoods, not good ones. At least that’s what we would all like to think, but it’s not the truth.
The truth is that crime and violence can happen anywhere. Even worse, it can be perpetrated by anyone, even people you know and trust. One minute you’re having a cookout with that nice older man from next door; the next minute, you’re calling the fire department because that same neighbor tried to burn your house down. And if you’re like most victims, you probably never saw it coming.
Jim, the murder-suicide guy, was like that. Sam could always sense that something wasn’t quite right with him—or so he said after the fact, which is easy to do since as they say, “retrospect is 20/20”—but the fact is that even Sam had no idea what Jim was capable of. He came and went each day, interacted with people from the block, did yard work on the weekends (weather permitting, of course) and basically seemed normal.
Now that I think about it, maybe that was the tip-off: he seemed normal. And in today’s society, normalcy just isn’t an option. These days it’s all about survival.
Be good to each other, dear readers. And for goodness sake, watch your backs. You never know where the next “Jim” will strike, so please don’t take any chances.
Go anywhere that different generations of people regularly interact—like the campus of the small, private college where I work—and you will inevitably hear the same grumbling from one of the older folks: “I don’t know what’s wrong with the youth today, but we never…”
I’m sure you can fill in the rest.
Although I still consider myself to be a young man, the sad fact is that at nearly 42 years of age, I am no spring chicken (to use an expression from my neck of the woods… damn it, the clichés just keep on coming). In my mind, I’m still that young, idealistic go-getter with his whole life in front of him. Reality, on the other hand, is quite different. And all the warning signs are there: a habitually sore back and aching bones; a goatee speckled with white hairs and covering a double chin; an inability to stay up past 11:00 at night or to sleep past 10:00 the next morning, even during a vacation or holiday; a staunch refusal to turn the speaker to 10 (or 11 for all you Spinal Tap fans) and a preference for quieter tunes; and all sorts of other interesting changes.
If you’re a little older, then I’m sure you know exactly what I mean. And if you know what I mean, then we probably share another fundamental belief: AGING SUCKS.
Sure, there are those who would have you believe “The Golden Years” are wonderful, but even they know deep down in their brittle, calcium-deprived bones that it blows to get old. It’s like the Dread Pirate Roberts says in one of my favorite films, The Princess Bride: “Anyone who says differently is selling something.”
But I digress.
Accepting the fact that I’m older isn’t a huge problem for me yet—it’s possible I could only be at the mid-point right now—but I also find myself wondering (and worrying) about young people. Since I work so closely with them and tend to be more of a realist, I don’t find it tough to relate because we’ve all been there. Nothing shocks or offends or surprises me any more. And though I am always straight with them and try to steer them in the right direction—even if it means leaving college to follow their dreams or achieve their goals elsewhere—the reality is that some will succeed and others will not.
Where I come from, we have a name for this phenomenon. It’s called life. And yes, the place I come from is Earth, just like you. I hope.
Without much effort, I could ramble on about all the differences between “my” generation and the youth of today: What’s up with texting pictures of your junk to total strangers? Or going thousands of dollars into debt only to sleep all day and fail all your classes? Or loading up your Facebook page with pictures of you flipping the bird or dropping your pants? You think you’re going to land that kick-ass job once your prospective employer sees photos of you at some party with a beer in one hand and a bong in the other? Think again!
Don’t get me started.
Instead of wasting time with all of that, I would prefer to focus on a specific set of skills that seem to be lacking in our young men today. It isn’t pretty—and can often be quite stinky—but I am of course referencing BATHROOM SKILLS. And for a guy like me, who prefers neatness but is willing to lower the bar a little for public restrooms, the situation is worse than you can imagine. Consider my own workplace, the aforementioned small, private college.
At most—and I’m sure someone will tease me later for not remembering the exact number—we have around 400 students on campus, the majority of them male. And since my building holds many of our classes, a lot of these students pass through each day. It’s a busy, high-traffic area.
Our young women have nothing to fear because there is a restroom on each of the two floors to accommodate their needs. Unfortunately, men only have one and it’s right there as you walk through the front door. Everyone uses it, and here’s where things get nasty both figuratively and literally.
I apologize in advance if I start ranting and raving. And if I happen to offend, I am truly sorry.
Whenever I walk in to this particular bathroom—and believe me when I say that I visit it as infrequently as possible—it’s almost as if I teleported to the School for the Blind. I’ve never actually seen it happen, but I envision students entering the lavatory with their business hanging out of their flies, spraying wildly and then fleeing the scene of the crime. In those terms, I would have to be the forensic expert who arrives later and attempts to piece everything together. The veteran forensic expert, I mean, given all my unfortunate experience with this public health issue [attempting to sound serious given the topic is pee pee].
It’s gross, but sadly that’s only the beginning.
Earlier today—and given that I only had number one needs, if you catch my drift—I reluctantly walked into this nightmare lavatory and found another horrifying sight: a toilet backed up with the “bad stuff” and in danger of crossing the threshold. As much as I hate to say it, this kind of thing happens so often that I barely take notice any more. Only this time was different.
Lined neatly along the toilet seat were little strips of paper towels, all of them roughly the same size and overlapping perfectly to prevent any skin-to-seat contact. As usual, the bathroom was poorly stocked and this poor bastard had to go all MacGyver on it. You older folks… I mean, more mature readers… should catch that reference. But he did it with class, spent some time on the details and at least started his business the right way.
Based solely on the evidence—which I hope has not been tampered with since I would be the only suspect—only two scenarios seem likely at this point.
In the first scenario, the subject starts off strong, but soon things take a turn for the worse. He pushes so hard that he blows out his O-ring. The shock slams his head into the wall and in a semi-concussive, even dream-like state, he simply forgets to flush and wanders away.
One can only hope that he remembered to wipe first, but I wouldn’t hold my breath. Actually, scratch that because I believe I did hold my breath for a short time there.
Scenario two adds a bit of normalcy because for the first few minutes—perhaps for most of the movement—everything is fine and runs smoothly. It’s even possible that successful wiping took place before disaster finally struck. With his ritual complete and his clothes in order, our subject attempts to flush five “gallons” down a two-gallon toilet and quickly realizes that “it ain’t happening.” Did that make me sound young?
He flees. I walk in. There’s poo-poo everywhere. You get the picture.
I also feel impelled to mention the “put the seat up/put the seat down” thing despite the fact that only men use this particular restroom. We don’t like to admit it, but we have all used questionable facilities at one time or another. Sure, we seek cleaner, more private venues when they’re available. But on the rare occasion, a perfect storm converges at the most inopportune moment and despite our best efforts, there simply isn’t time to find a new toilet. You just have to make do, and that’s no easy task in most men’s rooms. All you can do is pray the guys before you lifted the seat before spraying—which often is not the case—or start cleaning.
Then you realize there aren’t any paper towels and the soap dispensers are dry. Confused, shocked and angry, you make the mistake of standing motionless for 15 seconds and the lights suddenly go out to conserve energy. Aaaahhhh!
I have some other examples that I could share—some of which are even more disturbing—but I think my message is clear. To eliminate all possible confusion, though, I now address the young men out there with deficiencies in the bathroom. And you know who you are.
I don’t care if you were poorly trained, have vision problems, suffer from vertigo or nervous urination—if there is such a thing—don’t pay enough attention or simply don’t care. When you use a public restroom, please try to be clean and considerate so the next guy will do the same (i.e. pee it forward). If you want to piss all over the place, sit in your own urine, flood your bathroom with sewage or even smear yourself down in unmentionable substances in your own home, please be my guest. Most of us will never use your facilities anyway. Just don’t impose your bad toilet habits on the rest of us. That shouldn’t be too much to ask.
Of course, we should all keep something else in mind: someday in each of our futures, we won’t be able to control any of these bodily functions. We may even hire people to clean up after us. Who knows? When that time comes, I say piss and shit all over the place if you like. You may not have a choice. But for now, while you’re here and we all have to live together, please do us all a “solid” and keep it neat in public.
After all, we don’t want the next health pandemic to come from our bathrooms, do we?
When you think of death, and trust me when I say this is something I try to avoid in most cases, it is often difficult to equate it with anything but morbidity and depression. However, the Grim Reaper obviously has a sense of humor and I personally feel it’s healthy to explore the lighter, more hilarious side of our ultimate demise. I am obviously not alone as people all over the internet have explored the lighter side of death in endless forums. Nevertheless, I would like to throw my hat into the ring and remind everyone that even in the most grim circumstances, there is some “funny” to be found.
Let’s start with that final announcement that comes when you push up daisies: the obituary. Here are some of my favorites from around the web:
“Dolores had no hobbies, made no contribution to society and rarely shared a kind word or deed in her life. I speak for the majority of her family when I say her presence will not be missed by many, very few tears will be shed and there will be no lamenting over her passing.”
“He was born in a log cabin… and was circumcised with his dad’s pocketknife.”
“Mike wanted it known that he died as a result of being stubborn, refusing to follow doctors’ orders and raising hell for more than six decades. He enjoyed booze, guns, cars and younger women until the day he died.”
“Loren… passed away of complications from MS and heartbreaking disappointment caused by the Kansas City Chiefs football team.”
“He was a connoisseur of root beer and bacon, searching far and wide for varieties he had yet to try.”
“When his family was asked what they remembered about Fred, they fondly recalled how Fred never peed in the shower—on purpose. [He] sadly was deprived of his final wish, which was to be run over by a beer truck on the way to the liquor store to buy booze for a double date to include his wife, Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter to crash an ACLU cocktail party.”
“Louis bought the farm, having lived more than twice as long as he had expected and probably three or four times as long as he deserved. Lou was a daredevil: his last words were ‘Watch this!’”
“Her regular emails to family were often unintentionally hilarious as her typing was spotty and her typos were legendary. She was a difficult mother and a horrendous mother-in-law. She will STILL be missed.”
“In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully asked that donations be sent to the American Cancer Society or to the campaign of whoever is running against President Barack Obama in 2012.”
Even more entertaining are some of the gravestones people select to adorn their final resting places. Check out this gallery of some of the more strange, funny and bizarre ones to be found:
Call me sick or demented if you must, but I have always been fascinated by cannibalism. I’m not talking about ancient civilizations that ingested the bodies of their enemies because they believed they could absorb their strength. And I’m not all that interested in some primitive tribe that still practices cannibalism today. What I find most intriguing are stories where cannibalism becomes a necessity for survival. Fortunately, I was chilling out earlier this afternoon—doing some channel surfing while waiting for blog inspiration—and stumbled across the film “Alive.”
The 1993 movie focuses on the Uruguayan rugby team whose plane crashed in the Andes Mountains in 1972. The team was heading for a match in Chile when they hit turbulence, descended from a cloud bank at too low an altitude and clipped the peak of a nearby mountain. The tail and a wing of the plane immediately ripped away, taking a number of passengers with them, while the fuselage slid down a snowy slope and eventually stopped.
For more than 70 days, the survivors endured bitter cold, an avalanche, starvation and death. With no hope of rescue and nothing to keep them alive—their last bits of wine and chocolate having been used within the first few days—they had no choice but to feast upon the flesh of their dead, all of whom were preserved in the snow. They did so in a very methodical and respectful way, of course, but the fact is that they weren’t just eating people; they were eating people they knew.
Talk about getting a little help from your friends.
Eventually, two of the survivors—Nando Parrado and Roberto Canessa—load up with meat and makeshift sleeping bags, dress as warmly as possible and trek for twelve days through the mountains towards Chile. They obviously make it and alert the authorities, who send helicopters to pick up the 14 survivors they left behind. Years later, the group returned to the site of the crash to properly bury their dead, or what was left of them. A memorial to their 29 departed friends still stands there today.
Fascinating, isn’t it?
Granted, some may find this story gross or even sinful, but I think most of us understand that “desperate times call for desperate measures.” And from what I understand, the closest match for human flesh is pork, so I’m sure it wasn’t as nasty as we may think. The bodies were pretty frozen when they were consumed and I’m certain this reduced the gross factor. If this had happened in a warmer environment, then they may have been forced to slice their friends into flank steaks and grill them up. This seems much more gruesome and offensive, but also more delicious.
Sorry. I couldn’t stop thinking of pork ribs as I was writing that.
Of course, the classic tale of cannibalism for survival occurred in 1846, when a group of American pioneers left Missouri for California and made a very fateful navigation decision. To save time, the Donner Party and their wagon train chose to take the Hastings Cutoff through the Wasatch Mountains and across the Great Salt Lake Desert. Unfortunately, this path set them back even further and they arrived at the California trail a month late.
As they were traversing the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, an early winter storm rolled in and blocked their path with snow. The Donner Party was forced to spend the winter there and took shelter in several cabins. Once their food supply dwindled down to almost nothing, a group of 15 members set out for California in the hopes of being rescued. Cold and starvation claimed eight victims and in order to survive, the remaining seven members were forced to eat their dead companions. Fortunately, this provided the energy they needed to escape the mountains 33 days later.
Back at the campsite, the survivors were eating everything in sight: mice, ox hide and even soup made from soaked horse bones. These short-term solutions didn’t last and eventually, cannibalism again became their only option. Those who died were mutilated, packed in snow and used as food, and this included women and children. Several rescue parties were dispatched later and reported seeing survivors carrying body parts and living off the organs of their deceased friends and relatives. And when all was said and done, 48 of the original 87 Donner Party members were still alive.
Cannibalism had saved them.
Human beings are incredibly resilient creatures. And when survival and self-preservation are at risk, we sometimes do things we aren’t proud of to ensure we live to see another day. Eating human flesh isn’t ideal, to be sure, but it is a “last resort” we all may be willing to take if the need arises. Personally, I wouldn’t hesitate to do so if I had no other option. It wouldn’t be pleasant, but it would make logical sense. The human body needs food to sustain itself and, given no alternative, it can certainly serve this function itself.
I hope I never find myself in a Donner Party or “Alive” situation, but if I do, I hope I’m one of the first to go. That way the survival of my group will be guaranteed, because I’m confident everyone will be fat and happy once they eat me!
Since the presidential election is only a week away—and being something of a procrastinator—I figured now was the time to announce my candidacy for your next Commander-in-Chief. I know this is unexpected and may even be perceived as lazy, but hear me out. For a year or more, we have all been subjected to endless campaign advertisements and constant political posturing. Why force a third candidate on the American people when they have obviously suffered enough?
Positive Presidential Trait #1: Mercy.
I also find the price tag of a presidential campaign to be far too expensive. How can we justify spending hundreds of millions of dollars on television spots, direct mail flyers, placards, publicity agents and other campaign “necessities” when there are so many Americans out of work? Sorry, but my conscience won’t allow that, so I opted to keep the campaigning to a minimum: this post. It would be nice if enough of my fellow Americans read this, voted for me as a write-in candidate and actually sent me to Washington, but I’m realistic. I know it’s a long shot, but I figure, what the hell?
Positive Presidential Trait #2: Bravery—and maybe a little Faith (for you Tea Party folks out there).
Of course, no presidential campaign would be complete with some promises. I was about to write “empty promises” but for once, there is a candidate willing to tell it like it is—someone who isn’t afraid to speak the truth. And that someone is obviously ME!
If you elect me as your next President of the United States of America, I promise to…
…blame the previous administration for everything that’s wrong while taking credit for anything positive they put into motion.
…put an end to homework! Sorry. That was apparently some deep-seeded memory of a middle-school election I have tried hard to forget. A story for another time, perhaps.
…use Air Force One to take summer vacations to Atlantis Resort, Rio de Janeiro, Hawaii or some other exotic locale. Hey, I’m just being honest. I suppose there could be some kind of lottery so normal Americans could win invitations to join us. We could fill up the plane, book a resort and throw down Presidential style… whatever that is.
…pretend the millions of jobs economists predict will be created over the next four years have something to do with me.
…use cigars only as intended—for smoking. Since I don’t smoke cigars, though, this shouldn’t be a problem. I do smoke cigarettes, but they are far less durable and I doubt anyone could derive any erotic pleasure from them. Or could they? I suppose it is possible. After all, there are people who get off on poo poo and pee pee, and that’s just nasty.
…appear at as many of your children’s birthday parties as my schedule allows. We all know the President isn’t as busy as he lets on. The VP runs around the country, the Secretary of State travels the world and he just has to sit back and chill. Why not spend some of that “down time” making balloon animals, telling jokes and doing parlor tricks for a bunch of snot-nosed… I mean gifted… kids? They are the future.
…show my gratitude by releasing some juicy, previously confidential information, like the truth about Area 51, the Kennedy assassination, Roswell… you name it. Visit my website to vote—it will launch once I take office—and help determine which secrets get revealed!
…bring peace to the Middle East through democracy and… sorry… I can’t even write that, it’s so far-fetched!
…tell you everything and be as transparent as the Invisible Man, even if it causes panic in the streets, rioting, a zombie apocalypse… whatever. America has a right to know, damn it!
…implement policies or start projects that require more than four years to complete so you will have no choice but to re-elect me. Good politics take time, so eight years works much, much better.
Positive Presidential Trait #3: Sense of Humor—Decide for yourself if it’s good or bad.
Finally, I offer a little information about myself so you can rest easy I’m no freak. I have no criminal record, adult or juvenile, and have never committed a major crime. Technically, speeding and urinating in public are crimes, but they’re more the “little white crime” variety, if you know what I mean.
I don’t attend church—mostly because Sundays are my holy football days and church clothes are too itchy and uncomfortable—but I’m open to it and certainly don’t mind if others go. Faith is a good thing. And no, it isn’t for the Tea Party people this time. I really mean it.
Most of all, I’m a decent person. I won’t abuse the position if I can help it—maybe some late-night grilled cheese sandwiches or barbecued ribs from the White House chef, but nothing major. And I certainly couldn’t do any worse than anyone before or after me. Hell, I’m just what this election needs: a non-politician with bipartisan inclinations. So next week when you hit the polls and elbow through those annoying campaign “scalpers” working the door, do us all a favor.
Vote for me!
Positive Presidential Trait #4: Sincerity—I genuinely feel your pain. And I think you know what I mean, don’t you?
Halloween is steadily approaching and all things spooky dwell in the darkness. Children ready their costumes, parents prepare their treats and everyone waits anxiously for the scariest day of the year. But even the most frightening slasher film or haunted house cannot compare with some of the horrors from history, including this terrifying tale from the 16th century.
Erzsebet (or “Elizabeth”) Bathory was a countess born in 1560 Slovakia and raised near the town of Vishine, just north-east of present day Bratislava. Her parents, George and Anna, were both Bathorys by birth, which made Elizabeth the product of inbreeding, a common practice among the European aristocracy at the time. The Bathorys were one of the most powerful Protestant families in Hungary. Among them were clerics, politicians, warlords and even royalty, including the Prince of Transylvania and future King of Poland.
As a child, Elizabeth suffered from seizures—most likely due to epilepsy connected to the inbreeding—and would sometimes lose control and go into a rage. She also witnessed atrocities committed by her family’s officers at their Transylvania estate. One story tells of a gypsy thief who was captured, sewn into the belly of a dying horse with only his head sticking out and left to die. For Elizabeth, grisly death and murder were commonplace. And they undoubtedly had an effect on her later in life.
At fourteen years of age, Elizabeth became pregnant to a peasant man and had to be isolated until her daughter was born. The child was given to a peasant couple to raise because Elizabeth had a different plan: she was to marry Count Ferenc Nadasdy and did so in May 1575.
Nadasdy was a soldier and was frequently away for long periods of time, leaving Elizabeth to manage the family estate, Castle Sarvar. She soon developed a reputation as a harsh master, behaving cruelly to her large staff—primarily young girls—and disciplining them endlessly to exert her authority. Bathory’s husband even joined her during his returns home, teaching her new and more sadistic ways to torment and torture her servants.
Sometimes, Elizabeth would stick pins into sensitive areas of her servants’ bodies, like under their fingernails or between their toes. In the winter, it’s said that Bathory would execute her victims by taking them out in the snow naked and tossing water on them until they froze and died. Rumor has it her husband even taught her a warm-weather version of this torture: the stripped woman would be covered with honey and left for the insects to devour.
None of this compared with what was to come.
Count Ferenc died in 1604 of an infected wound, the rumor being that it was inflicted by a prostitute he refused to pay. Elizabeth buried her husband and moved to Vienna, but she spent a great deal of her time at her castle Cachtice in Slovakia. Here she met Anna Darvula, a sadist who soon became her lover and helped Elizabeth commit some of her greatest and most disturbing atrocities.
One fateful day, a servant girl was combing Elizabeth’s hair and accidentally pulled it, leading the Countess to strike her. A few drops of blood fell on Elizabeth’s skin and she noticed that it seemed to reduce the signs of aging. According to several eyewitnesses, this was when Bathory began to kill her female servants and to drain them of their blood, which she allegedly bathed in and even drank. She was also known to bite servants’ flesh as she tortured them, a behavior that provided Bram Stoker with inspiration for his most famous character, Dracula.
Darvula died in 1609, so Bathory found a new accomplice and lover, Erszi Majorova, the widow of one of her farmer tenants. Majorova convinced Elizabeth to victimize noble girls as well as peasant girls, a move which brought the Countess too much attention. The King of Hungary eventually ordered her arrest and his troops raided the castle Cachtice. Inside, they found the bodies of Bathory’s victims—as well as some still alive and locked in cells—and allegedly discovered a register with the names of more than 650 people she killed. Elizabeth’s associates were arrested and later executed in gruesome ways—two had their fingers torn off with red-hot pincers before being burned alive, while a third was decapitated and tossed onto the same fire later.
Elizabeth Bathory was never convicted of a crime, but she did pay the price for her evil deeds. Bathory’s cousin, the King of Poland, had her confined to a room in Castle Cachtice with no windows or doors. There were only a few slits for air, as well as one for food and water. Bathory remained in this solitary room for three years and died in August 1614.
Now she bathes in the blood of eternal damnation, further proof that the “evil that men do” is always more frightening than Halloween fiction and horror films. Beware “The Blood Countess” as you venture out into the darkness of All Hallow’s Eve. She just might be waiting for you…
Death has been called the “great equalizer” because it is the one thing people share regardless of their race, gender, political affiliation, financial status, sexual orientation or any other feature, trait or characteristic that sets them apart.
There is no escape. And death does not discriminate.
If we’re lucky, we will pass away quietly and peacefully in the twilight of our lives, nestled warmly in our beds and surrounded by friends and loved ones. The unfortunate thing is that simple probability makes this “gentle demise” impossible for all of us—some will face a more gruesome and painful end.
And celebrities are no exception.
When it comes to facing death head-on or falling victim to the worst possible crimes imaginable, the rich and famous often steal the show by dying with flair. The circumstances may be unsavory or disturbing, but there is usually some dramatic tale or mystery to entertain and intrigue us long after they’re gone. Case in point: the following celebrity deaths, all of which qualify as unforgettably “freaky” in their own unique ways.
The star of television’s “Hogan’s Heroes”—and a well-known sex addict—was bludgeoned to death in an Arizona motel room in June 1978. His assailant—who was never found—used either a tire iron or camera tripod to bash in Crane’s skull, tied an electric cord around his neck and allegedly ejaculated on the corpse. Needless to say, it likely wasn’t a fan responsible for the gruesome crime.
“The Mexican Spitfire” starred in more than fifty films between 1927 and 1944, was married to “Tarzan” actor Johnny Weissmuller and had a well-known affair with Gary Cooper. At age 36, she was impregnated by actor Harald Maresch and felt ashamed to have a child out of wedlock. Velez decided to end her life and took an overdose of Seconal, a sleeping medication. Unfortunately, the medicine made her nauseous and when she went into the bathroom to vomit, she slipped and fell head-first into the toilet. A maid discovered her body there the next day.
In one of the most bizarre murders in Hollywood history, Mexican leading man Ramon Novarro—the original Ben Hur—died in an extortion attempt by several Chicago hustlers. The men suspected that Novarro had $5000 stashed in his home and meant to rob him, so they suffocated him with an Art Deco dildo he had received from Rudolph Valentino decades earlier. In the end, they stole only $20, making this one of the least lucrative and most bizarre murders in the world of entertainment.
The high-priced actress and model from Denmark—described by many as a “Garbo look-alike”—once dated eccentric business magnate Howard Hughes. When her acting career didn’t take off, Andre did something unthinkable: she used old publicity newspaper clippings to build a funeral pyre in her apartment building and burned herself to death.
Another bizarre Hollywood death involves Vic Morrow, American star of the 1960s television series “Combat!” and father of Carrie Morrow and Jennifer Jason Leigh. On the set of Steven Spielberg’s 1982 film “Twilight Zone: The Movie,” a helicopter malfunctioned and came crashing down on Morrow and several others. Sadly, Morrow could not escape and the low-flying helicopter blades decapitated him on the spot. The pilot, Spielberg and producer John Landis were later acquitted of involuntary manslaughter, and Morrow’s daughters eventually settled out of court.
The actor best known for playing Alfalfa in “Our Gang” (or the “Little Rascals”) got into a drunken brawl with a hunting buddy over a $50 debt in 1959. Things went bad quickly and Switzer was shot twice in the groin by his “friend.” He died of massive internal bleeding shortly thereafter and, oddly enough, his murder was ruled a justifiable homicide by police!
In the late 1970s, an up-and-coming beauty named Dorothy Stratten became a Playboy Playmate and embarked on what she hoped would be a successful acting career. This future never materialized thanks to her psychotic husband, Paul Snider, who tortured and murdered her in 1980 and even had sex with her corpse—he blew his own head off with a shotgun moments later. Stratten was only 20 years old. Her story was featured in the film “Star 80,” but I warn you it is kind of depressing.
The 1947 case of Elisabeth Short—the so-called “Black Dahlia”—remains unsolved to this day. The aspiring actress was found in the Leimert Park district of downtown Los Angeles, her body mutilated, cut in half at the waist and drained of blood. The corners of Short’s mouth were sliced—creating an effect known as the “Glasgow smile”—and her body had been both cleaned and positioned into an unusual pose. The LAPD has interviewed endless suspects over the years, but none have panned out and for now, the mystery continues.
The 1998 death of Alan Pakula—the American film director behind “Klute,” “All the President’s Men” and “Sophie’s Choice”—could have inspired any of the more recent “Final Destination” movies. While traveling down the Long Island Expressway, the car in front of him hit a metal pipe and sent it flying through Pakula’s windshield. The pipe struck him in the head and killed him instantly, leaving his car to swerve off the road and into a fence. Pakula was 70 years old.
Wildlife expert and head of the Australia Zoo, Steve Irwin, made a name for himself on the Animal Planet hit television series “The Crocodile Hunter.” Irwin was known for taking risks and stirring up controversy, as he did in 2004 when he took his one-month-old son into a crocodile pen during feeding time. Irwin’s final performance came in 2006 while he was filming stingrays in Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef. One of the creatures he was observing felt threatened and stabbed Irwin in the chest with its barb. Irwin allegedly pulled the barb out, causing even more damage to his heart and killing him seconds later. At least he died doing what he loved, I guess.
Among the most famous murders in Hollywood is the 1969 slaughter of Sharon Tate by members of Charles Manson’s family. Tate was pregnant at the time, which didn’t stop Manson’s minions from mutilating her and stabbing her sixteen times. Her husband, filmmaker Roman Polanski, finally got some closure once Manson and his family members were arrested several months later.
The writer and playwright behind “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” and “A Streetcar Named Desire,” Tennessee Williams, met his maker at age 71 in his room at the Hotel Elysee in New York. Williams was using some nose spray—holding the cap between his teeth as he tilted his head back—and accidentally choked to death when the cap fell into his throat. Talk about bad luck.
The Australian musician and lead singer of the band INXS took a path oft taken by rock and roll superstars. Depressed and under the influence of drugs and alcohol, Hutchence used one of his snake skin belts to hang himself in a Sydney hotel in 1997. The strangest thing is that he was kneeling on the ground at the time, meaning he really wanted to die. It was a huge waste of an even-bigger talent.
Star of film and the television series “Kung Fu,” David Carradine died in 2009 in a Bangkok hotel room. At the time of his death, Carradine was wearing fish net stockings and a lady’s wig. He was also hanging in a closet with a rope around his neck, wrists and private parts. Some believe asphyxiation for sexual arousal was to blame; others claim Carradine was killed for investigating secret martial arts societies, a theory that echoes Bruce Lee’s mysterious death. Either way, this was not a pretty way to go.
Once famed host Richard Dawson left the television game show “Family Feud,” producers struggled to find a suitable replacement until Ray Combs arrived in the 1990s. Despite his on-screen popularity, Combs experienced a string of bad luck off-screen. Beginning in 1994, Combs was nearly paralyzed in a car accident; experienced business problems that led to the repossession of his house; separated from his wife; and was admitted to a psychiatric ward. This is where he finally ended his pain by hanging himself in the closet with a bed sheet. Ironically, the very bar in the closet Combs used for support was designed to break away during suicide attempts!
The list of freaky celebrity deaths could go on and on, and more seem to be added to the list each year. If nothing else, this certainly leaves the door open for a follow-up post later. I only hope it’s much later.
Bloggers are the best kind of people.
Today, I received a wonderful and unexpected honor from the sweet and beautiful Donah at Sweetjellybean.com. She bestowed upon me the coveted So Sweet Blogger Award. And more flattered, I could not be.
I have only been blogging for three months or so, but the experience has been so positive and inspirational that I can’t imagine why I haven’t been doing this all along. Years of work-a-day stress and routine tapped my creativity until I finally visited WordPress, determined to write again and to join the blogging community.
And what a community it is.
Everyone I meet through my own blog or theirs, as well as readers from all over the world, have been awesome. Even the people who disagree with my opinions and leave negative comments have been courteous and polite, for the most part. I interact with loyal followers daily, learn more about them and their lives, and share my own experiences in an encouraging and nurturing environment. WordPress is a great place to be because the people make it great, and that includes the WP staff… not to mention YOU!
Three months of blogging is not a long time, but it is long enough to know who my favorite, kindest and “sweetest” bloggers (and oftentimes readers) are. I wish I could recognize everyone because narrowing the list was not easy. It had to be done, though, so please visit and congratulate these folks for receiving the So Sweet Blogger Award! Woohoo!
- Sweetjellybean – You might think I did this just to say thanks, but the truth is that Donah is even sweeter than her blog title suggests!
- Food and Other Stuff
- After the Kids Leave
- Mama Tattoo
- Lady or Not… Here I Come - Tag! You’re it, Rebecca!
- Becky Says Things
- The Vain’s World
- Impybat’s Emporium - You’re awesome, Terri! Sorry if I don’t tell you that enough!
- Iconicallyrare - Thanks for being so sweet, Sonya!
- Lies Our Parents Told Us - I hope you’re not getting sick of all these nominations, Lex!
The list could go on and on, but I have to save someone for future nominations, right?
Congratulations again, my blogging friends! Keep kicking ass and don’t forget to award some of your sweetest bloggers, too!
I’m not sure if the planets aligned, hell froze over or Mother’s Day moved to September, but Mom was all over the news today. Dare I say she held her own with the Presidential election coverage, providing a much-needed break from all the empty promises and political double-speak. Sadly, not all the news was good, but what can you do? It’s Mom!
Marie Jost of Amherst, Wisconsin, has been receiving Social Security checks since she suffered a stroke in 1980. Today, these payments total $175,000. This may not seem like an exorbitant sum of money—especially spread across more than thirty years—but there’s more to the story: Jost has been dead since 1982.
Most of us put family first and live by the adage that “blood is thicker than water,” but the same can’t be said for Marie Jost’s son, daughter and son-in-law. After Jost disappeared without a trace three decades ago—she is of course presumed dead—her family continued to cash her Social Security checks. They would have raked in even more if the Social Security Administration hadn’t sent a deputy to Jost’s property to confirm that she was still alive. The ensuing investigation led authorities to Ronald Disher, Jost’s son-in-law, who confessed that she had “been gone about 25-30 years.”
Needless to say, all three of these losers face felony charges, prison time and fines heftier than the cash they stole from this poor woman.
Anna Gristina of Monroe, New York, is a mother of four and legal U.S. resident originally from Scotland. In town, she is known for rescuing animals and finding them homes. But in the big city, Gristina has a different image.
She is the madam of a multimillion-dollar prostitution… dating… service. And sadly, the party’s over.
The lovely and enterprising Gristina spent fifteen years giving wealthy clients “the business.” But her run came to an abrupt end when she sent two “escorts” to service what turned out to be an undercover cop. Now Gristina has been indicted by a grand jury and is fighting for her life in court.
Personally, I have no problem with prostitution for the same reason I’m pro-life on abortion: women have the right to choose what they do with their bodies. If this includes humping the life out of rich and sexually deprived clients, so be it. No offense to any “Johns” out there. And good luck to you, Anna. You’re going to need it.
Julie Myfors of Sedro-Woolley, Washington, discovered that her 17-year-old daughter was dating a registered sex offender, 19-year-old William Elms—his prior conviction was third-degree child molestation. When her daughter refused to break up with Elms, Myfors took action.
She immediately found a young girl who was friends with Elms on Facebook, set up a fake profile and email account, and started communicating with this pervert. Predictably, the conversation turned nasty—even violent—and led to Elms’ sending a picture of his “hangdown” to Myfors, who was posing as 15-year-old Ashley Lynn Brooks. A short visit with the police later and Elms found himself behind bars.
You know what happens to child molesters in jail, don’t you? Let’s just say that regardless of his sentence, Elms will undoubtedly get what’s coming to him… in the end. I can’t make it much clearer than that.
Anna Boyle of Woodinville, Washington, was cruising down a state highway, stoned out of her mind on weed, heroin, methamphetamines and God knows what else, when she was pulled over by “the fuzz.” Officers smelled pot and confronted Boyle and her passenger/fiancé about it. That’s when they heard a thumping sound coming from the trunk.
There they found Boyle’s three hungry children—their last meal was the previous day—as well as the family dog. Boyle and her partner-in-crime, Aaron Johnson, were immediately arrested on the drug charges. Additional charges related to the kids should be coming soon to a court near these two morons. I swear, some crackheads never learn.
Zewoinesh Badasso of San Diego, California, faces first-degree murder charges for strangling her 7-month-old son and tossing him out of a third-story window. A passerby found his tiny body on the street below and phoned police, who apprehended Badasso and took note of her “calm and unconcerned” behavior. Badasso’s attorney claims she was opening a window and accidentally dropped the baby out of it, but will focus her defense on “post-partum psychosis”—the equivalent of the temporary insanity plea, only for mothers who snap on their newborns.
Wow. I think I just depressed myself with that story. Murder aside, it’s also a shame to think that somewhere in San Diego could be a couple who would have loved to adopt this child. Instead, another young life has been snuffed. And there are no silver linings where dead babies are concerned.
What kind of messed up Mother’s Day would this have been? Of course, I suppose it is possible these mothers were trying to tell us all something very, very important. Something none of us should ever, ever forget.
Be good to Mom.
I am the guy who wrote this post and I endorse this message because as I stated before, I wrote this post and thus the message belongs to me. Take that, Mitt and Barack!