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More Monsters on Non-Sequitur Thursday

Sometimes when I have no ideas for a blog post nor brain to come up with any, I get on Facebook and find a cool picture, usually of a monster.  Sometimes not so much.  That is what you might call a heck of a note, especially during the month of October.  I wonder if my dear husband Steven downloaded anything good recently…

Was Elvis crossing over to the Dark Side or was Darth hoping for a gig as a back-up singer?

I’m going to count Darth Vader as a monster, although I suppose he is more properly considered a villain.  This being Non-Sequitur Thursday, I picked a few non-sequitur-looking pictures.  Darth Vader and Elvis Presley, there’s a buddy picture nobody ever made.  I suppose I could write a screenplay (if I knew how to write a screenplay), but who could we get to play Elvis?  Anyways, I would probably be lousy at pitching it to the studios.  That’s what you do with a screenplay, isn’t it?

It’s actually pretty good read.

Vampires are definitely monsters.  This is a book which occupies a proud place in our Halloween decorations.  Steven sought it out when he first heard of its existence.  I think a friend saw it in a bookstore window and posted a picture on Facebook.  Let’s hear it for posting pictures on Facebook!

Some humans are undoubtedly scarier than ghosts.

There’s a new ambition for me:  to find a ghost or other monster whose bed or closet I can hide under or in.

As you may have noticed, my writing tribulations continue.  I open the notebook and put pen to paper and nothing happens.  Oh, sometimes I write words then cross them out.  Then I write other words, some of which I let remain uncrossed.  They look up at me mockingly, flaunting their own ineptitude (how’s that for an awkward bit of anthropomorphism?).  And I make silly blog posts with pictures of monsters.  I like monsters.

 

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Hang In There, Me, It’s Almost Halloween!

So here I sat, feeling too tired and out of it to even make a Tired Tuesday post.  How pathetic is that?  I went running, thinking I could make another Running Commentary post, even though I just did one on Sunday.  It was a boring run.  You don’t want to read it, and I don’t want to write it.  I didn’t even feel like trolling Facebook for monster movie pictures.  Then I looked up and saw this cheerful fellow smiling at me.

Who could be uncheered by the ghost of a Jack-o-Lantern?

He actually wasn’t sitting there when he smiled at me, but when I went to take a picture of him, it seemed too cluttered.  After trying a couple of places, I put him on the stairs.  Brown carpeting, white wall, it seemed neutral enough.  Then I kept having the problem of him turning around.  You see, it is a pick, and I didn’t push the pointy stick into, say, a flower pot or piece of styrofoam, but just placed it in a little bottle we had on our shelf (it once contained Q brand of gin.  My nickname was “Q” in the army, so naturally I had to try the gin).

I recently purchased the decoration at Northstar Orchards in Westmoreland.  I know, I should write a blog post about the visit. How remiss of me that I have not.  I’ll try to get to it before the week is out.  In the meantime, I thought I would round out this blog post with a couple more pictures.  You see, Steve recently did some Halloween shopping himself.  Yesterday, I came home to find this waiting for me on the couch.

Actually, after coffee, I pretty much am a morning person.

Isn’t he adorable?  Yes, I like scary vampires too, like Christopher Lee or Bela Lugosi.  But I think this one is a sweetie.  As you see, I put it back on the couch to take the picture.  I will need to take the cute vampire out of the cup and use it one morning soon.  And here is the other decoration Steven bought.

I think he’s pretty awesome. Or is it a she?

I returned to the stairs for this shot.  And now I have run out of what little steam I had, but I see I am approaching 400 words.  I call that quite respectable for a Tired Tuesday.  I’ll try to come up with a real post tomorrow and forgo Wuss-out Wednesday for once.  As always, I hope you’ll stay tuned.

 

Scattered Saturday with No Vampires

Isn’t that an eye-catching title?  I just this minute thought of it, before I even wrote the post. I know, I know, as Truman Capote said, “That’s not writing, that’s typing.”  These days it seems I just sit at my computer, put my fingers on the keyboard and publish whatever spills out.  That is because I am a silly blogger not a Serious Writer.  But that is not what I meant to post about today.  I meant to give a brief overview of my activities for the day, then go back to enjoying my Saturday evening.  So here goes.

My dear husband, Steven, was ill yesterday.  I woke up this morning fearing I was ailing with the same.  Nevertheless, after ingesting some necessary coffee, I went running.  I had it in my head to make a Saturday Running Commentary post.  Remember when that was a thing?  Well, it may be again one weekend, but not today.  I spent most of the run feeling tired and wanting to stop.  However, I persevered. I’ve learned to do that when running, anyways.

Back home I thought I would write a few postcards, as I like to do on a Saturday morning.  I could walk to the post office once the window was open and purchase some postcard stamps, which naturally one runs out of when one make a habit of sending postcards every week, as I do.  Unfortunately, once I sat down with the postcards, I was hit with a wave of dizziness.  That was unpleasant.  I decided to go purchase the stamps when Steven left for work and write the postcards later today or Sunday morning.

Just before Steven left for work, the phone rang.  My friend Kim wanted me to go to the  Mohawk Valley Garlic and Herb Festival   in Little Falls.  Me, say no to garlic?  Or a festival in Little Falls? In fact, long time readers may remember that I have attended this festival every year for some time now (I believe I have written a few blog posts about it).  Yes, I felt dizzy.  So what?  Between my allergies and migraines, I rarely feel 100 percent.  If I can force myself to get through work when ill, I can damn well do something fun with a friend under similar conditions.

And it turned out I felt better when out in the fresh air.  Kim stopped by the post office with me, so I did get my stamps.  We had a great time at the Garlic Festival, and I purchased a bundle of garlic stalks, which I hung over the doorway where the vampire hangs (see picture on yesterday’s post for the vampire).  I’m not trying to antagonize the fellow; it was the only nail already stuck in my wall that was the proper height.  Maybe tomorrow I will post a picture, and do a proper blog post on the festival.

Leaving the festival, we went to The Old Barn Marketplace and Little Falls Cafe, at 6626 State Rt. 5.  What a great place!  I will for sure write more about that!

I have not done a whole lot since I got home, but I believe the movie-watching portion of my Saturday has arrived.  I’m thinking a viewing of Dracula is in order.   Having spent a good portion of the day sampling garlic and eventually purchasing a nice bunch, I do not think I will have anything to fear of vampires for a while.  Then again, I did say to the vendor who sold me the garlic that I was going to write a story about a vampire who loved garlic, just so that none of us could feel safe.

Happy Saturday, everybody!

 

I’ve Got That Holiday Feeling

Yes, it’s Lame Post Friday.  As regular readers know, however many foolish posts I make during the week, I always feel free to enjoy Lame Post Friday.  I am sitting on my couch in Halloween pajama bottoms, bra off (don’t you DARE say TMI!), glass of wine beside me.  There is an episode of 20/20 on the television that I would like to crochet and watch, but blog posts must be made (at least mine, by me).  So where shall I start…

You can’t tell, but I really do have pretty good legs for a woman my age.

Since I had mentioned my Halloween pajama pants, I thought I’d grab my Tablet and take a quick picture.  As we all know, the Halloween season begins the day after Labor Day.  However, I like to celebrate the holiday all year long.  To that end, we leave a few favored decorations out.

He was a Christmas present from my dearest husband, Steven.

Steven bought me this lovely vampire at Aubuchon in Herkimer, now sadly closed.  He is holding a Christmas ball in one hand and a bag of skulls in the other (I purchased the skulls for another purpose; he’s holding them for me).  We also put the little stocking around his neck to make him even more appropriate as a Christmas decoration.  I wonder if we ought to add a couple of accessories for Thanksgiving, Easter and the Fourth of July.  Points to ponder.

The frog is her friend, not a former prince.

This is one of our loveliest witches.  We have quite a collection  If we put them all out this year, perhaps I could make a witchy blog post with pictures.  She did not come with the frog; he is part of Steven’s extensive collection of such amphibians.

It looks as if Scrooge grumpily thrust Marley in the back in order to dominate the photo.

Just to show you we are not complete Halloween maniacs, I include a picture of a couple of our year-round Christmas decorations.  This is a Buyer’s Choice Caroler of Jacob Marley, which I purchased for Steven in 1989, after he had played the part of Jacob Marley in a production of A Christmas Carol.  My, that WAS a long time ago!  I cannot remember who gave Steven the nutcracker of Scrooge, but I believe it was my mother.  That is a kaleidoscope in the foreground.  We have a pretty cluttered knick-knack shelf.

 

Various Vampires on Tired Tuesday

It is Tired Tuesday (don’t judge), and I am resorting to my new favorite thing: downloading monster pictures from Facebook and writing stuff about them.  For one reason, I am mysteriously able to download on my own Facebook account once again.  I downloaded this one purely to test my machine:

He’s a pleasant-looking fellow.

It is a 17th or 18th century vampire burial. I downloaded it from Murder, Madness and the Macabre, one of my go-to Facebook pages.  After downloading that, I thought I would make this a vampire day and clicked around looking for more.  I went to The Golden Age of Monster Movies, always a good sources.

A new shot of my favorite guy!

Naturally I wanted to include Nosferatu, which, regular readers know, has my vote for the scariest movie ever.  I haven’t watched this one in a while.  Perhaps tomorrow I will give it a view.

Vampires can be scary in color, too.

Christopher Lee is the favored Dracula of many.  I do love the Hammer horror flicks of the 1960’s and ’70’s.  I only recall one vampire flick with Lee (perhaps you read my blog post about it).  I must seek out the other ones.

You didn’t think I would leave out Bela, did you?

What post about vampires would be complete without Bela Lugosi?  Oh, I’m sure others have written them. I may have written one myself.  I suppose your better bloggers would be writing scholarly commentary, comparing and contrasting the various vampires, perhaps including some of the blood-sucking lore and history of the legends.  And here we come to the ugly truth about me.  No matter.  It is Tired Tuesday, and I have made my blog post.  Now I must prepare for rehearsal for The Tempest (which I mentioned in yesterday’s post).  I must shake off my tiredness and act!

I hope I don’t meet up with any vampires.

 

Waiting for What?

I was at the doctor’s office this afternoon.  I won’t get into why because, you know, HIPPA and all.  Nothing serious or even particularly interesting. But I need a blog post and it is Tired Tuesday, so here we go.

They decided to do an EKG (is that how you spell it?  I mean, are all three letters capitalized?  I don’t know from medical terms).  The machine decided to give the nurse a little trouble (yes, I think of machines as sentient beings who delight in tormenting hapless humans).  It would not give a good reading.  I just lay there on the table with all those little wires taped to my body, trying to catch a nap.

The nurse said the machine kept saying, “Waiting for good data.”  I flashed on Waiting for Godot but did not know if she would get the theatrical reference so did not say anything.  I repeated “Waiting for good data” in my head several times, so I could use it in a Facebook post.  I decided to use it here instead.  I hope somebody was amused.

The last thing I had to do was let them draw blood.  I remarked to the phlebotomist that the blood was very seasonal, but she was not amused.  Come to think of it, she was a little cadaverous-looking herself, very thin with large eyes and a dead serious expression.  I’m sure she was not a vampire, because sunlight was coming through the window.  It wouldn’t matter that it was a cloudy day, would it?  I’m not up on all the vampire rules.

Oh dear, do you suppose I could get in trouble for making vampire jokes about a local phlebotomist?  She was a very good phlebotomist; I barely felt the needle go in.   And she wasn’t really cadaverous-looking.  I just threw that in for effect.

This is what happens on Tired Tuesday.  I get a little punchy.  But I see I have managed over 300 words, so let’s call it a post and move on.  I hope to go running tomorrow, so maybe I can write a post about that.

 

A Mod Vampire?

Here, at long last, is the post I began some time ago about the cheesy horror movie I saw.  Full disclosure:  some people do not consider Hammer Studios films to be cheesy, but I have made bold to so categorize it for the purposes of this blog post.

Spoiler Alert!  I am probably going to give away most of the salient plot points of Dracula A.D. 1972, so if you have not seen it and like to be surprised at developments, read no further.  Also, if you have seen the movie and liked it, you also might like to read no further, because I not only did not like it, I did not pay a great deal of attention to it, so my write-up is likely to annoy you.

I DVR’d Dracula A.D. 1972 from TCM some time ago and finally got around to watching it on my recent birthday.  I had hopes of getting a blog post out of it, but, well, we’ll see.

I could tell by the title that the movie takes place in what were then modern times (I guess during the ’70s it would have been Mod Times, but that’s neither here nor there), not the pseudo past we often see in horror movies, which usually means the ladies wear long dresses and everybody gets around in horse and carriage.  I like the pseudo past better for a cheesy horror movie.  Perhaps I’ll try to analyze why one of these Lame Post Fridays.

One might ask, “Well, why did you DVR it if you thought you weren’t going to like it?”  That is the flip side of the yahoos that say, “How do you know you won’t like it when you haven’t seen it?” as if I have infinite time to watch every movie ever made! I gave this movie a chance because (1) Hammer Studios, (2) Peter Cushing AND Christopher Lee, (3) they just don’t show that many horror movies I think I am going to like.

I did not completely dislike this one.  I may even watch it again to clear up my confusion on the parts I missed.  In the meantime, I’ll write about what I remember.

The movie opens, as many of these movies do, with a kind of a prologue, showing something that happened long before the events of the movie proper take place.  We see Peter Cushing (Van Helsing) finish off Christopher Lee (Dracula), who almost immediately crumbles into dust or, I guess, ashes. Then we see a henchman-looking guy making off with a vial full of ashes.

I talked about this when I wrote about Dracula Prince of Darkness.  There is no way that guy got all the ashes!  When he reconstitutes that vampire, it is going to be missing something.  In Prince of Darkness it was the power of speech (oh yeah, there was a story that Lee refused to say any of the lines because the dialogue was so badly written.  I like my explanation better).  And so I repeat myself.

Back in “modern” times, the horror action grinds to a complete halt with a wild party scene that goes on and on.  Its purpose, I suppose, it to introduce the group of young people who will fall afoul of Dracula.  A worthy purpose, a very dull scene.  I learned that the kids are wild and their leader is a thoroughgoing jerkface.  If there were any subtleties or further character traits, I missed them.

After fleeing the police (long story), the kids repair to the pub in search of further thrills.  Jerkface proposes a Black Mass.  The kids are down with this, but Satan will have to bring “his own booze, his own bird, and his own pot” (I may have that quote wrong.  Oh well).

As the Main Girl rides home with her Boyfriend, we learn that her grandfather is Van Helsing, presumably offspring or descendant of the guy in the first scene (following the movie tradition that descendants look EXACTLY like their forbears) (really I don’t mind this tradition; it is kind of like movie shorthand) (and makes casting easier).  Boyfriend wants to consult the grandfather about Black Masses and calling up Satan and stuff, but Main Girl demurs.

We meet Peter Cushing briefly in the next scene, but it mainly shows that he has a good relationship with his granddaughter and she is not as wild as the crowd she runs with.  There is no hint of any other family members, another handy arrangement common in fictional settings (oh, I’m sure it happens in real life as well.  Just because I’ve never seen it).

Jerkface goes home and grabs the vial of ashes we saw in the prologue. I never saw any explanation of how he came by the ashes.  A descendant of Henchman?  The same guy, immortal but not as powerful as Dracula?  These are the things I hope to pay more attention to if I ever watch this flick again.

So Dracula gets re-constituted at the Black Mass about 45 minutes into the movie. I made a note of it in the TV Journal but neglected to note when the prologue ended, so I don’t know how long we had to wait for him to return.  I was happy to see him, because I was tired of this gang of miscreants and was ready to see them get picked off as vampire food.

Now here is a question I must look up sometime in Vampires for Dummies:  When does a vampire victim become another vampire and when are they merely a bloodless corpse?  Is it up to the vampire that bites them?  I just mention it in passing.  I have no real problem with bloodless corpses in a movie of this kind.  For one reason, I don’t like to keep track of too many characters.

Speaking of keeping track of characters, have any of you been wondering whatever happened to Peter Cushing?  I was, but no, he doesn’t come back yet.  First we have the rather lengthy Black Mass where Jerkface adds blood and stirs well.  He’s all excited to see Christopher Lee and wants congratulations on a job well done.

“It was my will,” Christopher Lee intones.

I was like, “YOUR will?  How could you will any anything?  Hello, you were ashes!  Get over yourself!”

Well, I heard Christopher Lee had an ego and I’m sure Count Dracula did, too.  I guess that immortal, blood-sucking thing could go to anybody’s head.  And the fact that you CAN be re-constituted from ashes, whether or not you willed it from that state (or were completely there when re-constituted), is a pretty unusual talent.  So I guess I should cut a newly un-dead vampire a break.

Anyways, I had really lost track of the plot by this time, but the police get involved when the first bloodless corpse is discovered.  then Peter Cushing gets involved, because, you know, vampires and his granddaughter being friends with the corpse (before she was a corpse).  The police do not tiresomely dismiss Van Helseing (Cushing) as a crackpot, that hoary cliche, but they don’t jump on board with crucifixes and wooden stakes, either.

It’s really not a bad movie.  I might try to see it again if I get a chance.  I don’t promise to pay more attention, but if I do perhaps I could write a better blog post about it.  In the meantime, I hope at least some of you are pleased that I did not publish yet another post about Why I Can’t Write a Post.