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Crabzilla!: Giant crab spotted off English coast?
10.13.2014
04:20 pm

Topics:
Animals
Idiocracy

Tags:

bjmb
 
A giant 50ft crab has allegedly been photographed lurking in the shallow sea waters along Whistable harbor in Kent, England.

The undated image appeared on Weird Whistable, a website dedicated to “phantoms, mysteries, tall tales and artifacts” with the following byline:

Giant Crab

Crabbing is a popular activity for children during the summer. Does this satellite photo of the harbour reveal a giant crab or unusual sand formation?

The picture of “Crabzilla” is curated alongside other “photographic evidence” of the “unnormal,” such as a giant eyeball washed-up on a beach (or maybe a Kraken?), a sea serpent apparently splashing about on the water, an ice mountain created by the frozen sea in 1940, and the paw print of a winged monkey.

All of which looks like the curious invention of an excitable imagination.

Kent Online has a slightly different quote taken from the site, which has (sadly) apparently been taken down:

The website reads: “This shocking image of a giant crab under a popular crabbing spot in Whitstable was taken last weekend.

“The boys were unaware of the danger, but as several passersby shouted to them, the crab slipped silently away under the water, into the dark, sideways.”

Like a Boy’s Own story, it’s always more thrilling when there are people at risk of a hidden, deadly danger.

The online paper is (rightly) skeptical quoting graphic artist Ashley Austen, who said:

“The image of the giant crab can be quite easily recreated in Photoshop.

“All the ‘artist’ had to do is find a suitable image of a crab, overlay it on to the satellite picture of the harbour and apply a few filters to it to get the realistic look.”

The fact Weird Whistable is selling prints of its “unnormal” curiosities says it all…

Crabzilla is already making headlines across Britain’s TV news channels and tabloid newspapers including the front cover of the Daily Star….
 

 
The Star also has a report on the number of Brits scared of zombie attack:

Being attacked by zombies is scaring us to death.

Research by company One Poll, has revealed that fear of the undead is on the rise in the UK.

The poll, which was commissioned by makers of The Evil Within, showed that 27% of the population admitted that they’ve considered what to do if there was a zombie attack.

And 11% of bonkers Brits have even taken the extreme steps of working out an actual survival plan.

One terrified resident, Matthew Hall-Turner, 29, from Cheshire admitted: “I’ve thought long and hard about what I’d do in light of a zombie attack, I think my best bet would be pretending to be one of them, walking really slowly, then escaping when the opportunity arises.”

Who said journalism is dead…?
 
aacrbse1.jpg
 

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Nicki Minaj’s ‘Anaconda’ gets hilariously soothing makeover
10.13.2014
02:33 pm

Topics:
Amusing

Tags:


 
Redditor johnluckpickerd noticed his 12-year-old niece and her friends were constantly singing Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda” without actually understanding its lyrics or meaning of the song.

Boy toy named Troy used to live in Detroit
Big dope dealer money, he was getting some coins
Was in shootouts with the law, but he live in a palace
Bought me Alexander McQueen, he was keeping me stylish
Now that’s real, real, real,
Gun in my purse, bitch I came dressed to kill
Who wanna go first? I had them pushing daffodils
I’m high as hell, I only took a half of pill
I’m on some dumb shit

Johnluckpickerd then decided to create this “Pop Music Poetry” for his niece’s mother so perhaps she would get a better idea of what her daughter and the rest of the kiddie gang were singing.

The original idea for this bit belongs to Steve Allen. But I think it’s no less culturally relevant.

Erik Satie meets Nicki Minaj? It all turned out rather… zen? I could totally see myself doing yoga to this. In fact, I just might give it to my yoga instructor. It works.
 

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Social Schizophrenia, Social Depression: What does TV tell us about America?
10.13.2014
02:02 pm

Topics:
Politics
Pop Culture

Tags:


 
This is a guest post from Charles Hugh Smith. Read his essays daily at his Of Two Minds. Smith’s latest book is Get a Job, Build a Real Career and Defy a Bewildering Economy.

The difference between what we experience and what we’re told we experience creates a social schizophrenia that leads to self-destructive attitudes and behaviors.

What can popular television programs tell us about the zeitgeist (spirit of the age) of our culture and economy?

It’s an interesting question, as all mass media both responds to and shapes our interpretations and explanations of changing times. It’s also an important question, as mass media trends crystallize and express new ways of understanding our era.

Those who shape our interpretation of events also shape our responses.  This of course is the goal of propaganda: Shape the interpretation, and the response predictably follows.

As a corporate enterprise, mass media’s goal is to make money—the more the better—and that requires finding entertainment products that attract and engage large audiences.  The products that change popular culture are typically new enough to fulfill our innate attraction to novelty—but this isn’t enough. The product must express an interpretation of our time that was nascent but that had not yet found expression.

We can understand this complex process of crystallizing and giving expression to new contexts as one facet of the politics of experience.
 

 
The Politics of Experience

It is not coincidental that the phrase politics of experience was coined by a psychiatrist, R.D. Laing, for the phrase unpacks the way our internalized interpretation of experience can be shaped to create uniform beliefs about our society and economy that then lead to norms of behavior that support the political/economic status quo.

Here’s how Laing described the social ramifications in Chapter Four of his 1967 book, The Politics of Experience:

“All those people who seek to control the behavior of large numbers of other people work on the experiences of those other people. Once people can be induced to experience a situation in a similar way, they can be expected to behave in similar ways. Induce people all to want the same thing, hate the same things, feel the same threat, then their behavior is already captive - you have acquired your consumers or your cannon-fodder.”

For Laing, the politics of experience is not just about influencing social behavior – it has an individual, inner consequence as well:

“Our behavior is a function of our experience. We act according to the way we see things. If our experience is destroyed, our behavior will be destructive. If our experience is destroyed, we have lost our own selves.”

How the media shapes our interpretation affects not just our beliefs and responses, but our perceptions of self and our role in society. If the media’s interpretation no longer aligns with our experience, the conflict can generate self-destructive behaviors.

In other words, mass media interpretations can create a social schizophrenia that can lead to self-destructive attitudes and behaviors.

Social Analysis of TV

By its very nature as a mass shared experience, popular entertainment is fertile ground for social analysis.

Here’s a common example: what does a child learn about conflict resolution if he’s seen a thousand TV programs in which the “hero” is compelled to kill the “bad guy” in a showdown? What does that pattern suggest, not just about the structure of drama, but about the society that creates that drama?

Analyzing entertainment has been popular in America since the 1950s, if not earlier.  The film noir of the 1950s, for example, was widely deemed to express the angst of the Cold War era.  Others held that the rising prosperity of the 1950s enabled the populace to explore its darker demons—something the hardships and anxieties of the Depression did not encourage.

Many believe the Depression gave rise to screwball comedies and light-hearted entertainment featuring the casually wealthy precisely because these were escapist antidotes to the grinding realities of the era.

Even television shows that were denigrated as superficial in their own time (for example, Bewitched in the 1960s) can be seen as politically inert but subconsciously potent expressions of profound social changes: the “witch” in Bewitched is a powerful young female who is constantly implored by her conventional husband to conform to all the bland niceties of a suburban housewife, but she finds ways to rebel against these strictures.

More after the jump…

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Remember that time David Bowie recorded that shitty song with Mickey Rourke?
10.13.2014
11:26 am

Topics:
Heroes
Music

Tags:


 
In 1987 David Bowie recorded the album Never Let Me Down. What I didn’t know and perhaps you might and are still trying to forget is that a track on the record called “Shining Star (Makin’ My Love),” includes a rap by actor Mickey Rourke mid-way through the song.

Sometimes the world doesn’t make sense, and this is one of those times. The story goes that after meeting Bowie in London while filming A Prayer for the Dying, Rourke approached the Thin White Duke about making an artistic contribution to Never Let Me Down. Bowie agreed and now we can all cross “hearing Mickey Rourke rap on a David Bowie album” off of our collective bucket lists.
 

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Dickhead cop asks ‘Why is it everybody who plays Frisbee golf smokes weed?’
10.13.2014
09:41 am

Topics:
Crime
Stupid or Evil?

Tags:


 
An Iowa police officer named Aaron King is under fire after this video made the rounds on the Internet. King is seen giving a motorist a written warning for their headlights not working properly and then asks, “Why is it everybody that plays Frisbee golf smokes weed?” in an attempt to get the motorist to agree to a search of his vehicle.

The interaction is annoying as all hell. My blood was boiling while watching it, but the joke’s on Officer King, as the motorist quickly realized what was actually happening and that his rights were being violated.

“In the video taken by an occupant in the vehicle, the officer engages the driver in a line of questioning that is foolish and not representative of the Ankeny Police Dept.’s training or interactions with the public. This verbal exchange did not meet the level of professionalism expected of Ankeny police officers,” Chief Gary J. Mikulec said in a statement posted to the city’s website.

More than anything, it’s an interesting—even educational—video to watch just to witness a dickhead cop’s manipulative “wordplay” in action.

 
via NBC News

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
FUG YOU! The Fugs invade Cleveland, 1967
10.13.2014
08:13 am

Topics:
Music

Tags:


 
On May 14, 1967, a benefit was held in Cleveland to assist two local figures on the local literary scene, bookseller James Lowell and poet d. a. levy (who styled his name lower-case), who had been arrested for distributing obscenity. The venue of the concert was Strosacker Auditorium on Case Western campus in Cleveland’s East Side, an edifice that still stands today. The benefit featured free speech hard-liner Allen Ginsberg and New York City punk/folk weirdos The Fugs. In his book Fug You: An Informal History of the Peace Eye Bookstore, the Fuck You Press, the Fugs, and Counterculture in the Lower East Side, Fugs cofounder Ed Sanders called levy “one of the nation’s first Pot Martyrs, a Martyr of the Mimeograph Revolution, and a Martyr for the Right to Read Erotic Verse.” Sanders and legendary Beat figure Peter Orlovsky had both been involved in the distribution of the Marijuana Newsletter, which Sanders had sent to levy.
 

Lowell, levy, and Ginsberg
 
In November 1966 the police arrested levy at a reading at Cleveland’s Gate, a “a gathering place for college students founded by a Christian youth group,” according to a 2007 article in Cleveland Magazine, and a couple of weeks later, Lowell’s Asphodel Book Shop on Cleveland’s West 6th Street was raided by the police which seized “nine crates of d.a.‘s publications on the grounds that they advocated the legalization of hemp and a mimeograph machine,” according to Sanders.
 

 
The next day the following report appeared in the Cleveland Press, a daily newspaper (original typos preserved):
 

Benefit Boosts Fund for Levy and Lowell

A fund for the legal aid of poet D. A. Levy and bookstore owner James R. Lowell stood at $1000 today following a benefit performance by poet Alan Ginsburg and a folk-singing group from New York City.

Jasper Wood, chairman of the Lowell-Levy defense fund committee, said $3000 still is needed.

Levy is accused of disseminating and reading obscene poetry and Lowell is charged with selling obscene material.

Wood reported no police harassment at the session in Case Tech’s Strosacker auditorium. A capacity audience of 600 was on hand to hear the idols of New York’s Greenwich Village.

Ginsburg, who is probably the best known of the nation’s beat poets, read one of the poems for which Levy was arrested.

Levy read two poems.

Ginsburg, and the folk-rock group called the Fugs, donated their services. The Fugs, who flew here from Madison Wis., are on a national tour.

Wood said another poetry reading, by Robert Creeley, described as one of the top American contemporary poets, was scheduled for a later date.

Western Reserve University physics professor Paul Zilsel presided.

He told the audience: “I can go down Euclid Ave. and buy all the commercially produced literature I want.  As far as I am concerned, Mayor Locher’s callousness is obscene, the Hough riots are obscene, the war in Vietnam is obscene.

“I would rather listen to Ginsburg.”

Although Case officials had been subjected to some pressure to cancel the concert, no disturbances were reported. One student placed a sign in his dormitory window which said, “Draft Poets, Not Engineers.”

 

 
According to Cleveland Magazine, “In early 1968, the prosecutor agreed to drop the obscenity charges against levy and Lowell, citing liberal Supreme Court rulings. Levy’s lawyer convinced him to plead no contest to the juvenile charges to avoid a felony conviction, prison or an expensive legal fight. Levy agreed to pay a $200 fine and no longer associate with juveniles or give them his poetry. ... ‘We probably made a mistake in that case,” Gold says. “Even though there was no real sanction imposed, it was an inner sanction with him. I think it broke his spirit a lot.’”

On November 24, 1968, levy shot himself in his East Cleveland apartment. Lowell died in 2004.

Here’s a brief clip of The Fugs from the Cleveland benefit concert:
 

 
There is a second clip of levy from the same May 14, 1967, event reading from his works that is not embeddable.

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Things that should exist: Vintage trading cards based on ‘The Shining’
10.13.2014
08:08 am

Topics:
Movies

Tags:

The Shining trading cards The Grady Twins
The Grady Twins #208
 
In the tradition of Portland, Oregon’s motto to “keep Portland weird,” here’s a bunch of faux-trading cards based on The Shining done up by PDX-based blog, Man is the Warmest Place to Hide. Rian Callahan, the blogger who runs this excellent 80’s horror loving site, says he created the cards simply because they didn’t exist and he thought that they should. Not only do I love the way that Callahan’s brain works, he’s also done an incredible job on the cards managing to show what looks like actual wear and tear on the edges.

Callahan says the series is an “ongoing project”, but sadly hasn’t done a new card since May of 2013. Hopefully he’s got a few more in the works because I really need to see a trading card version of Jack Nicholson’s “Here’s Johnny!” scene and Danny Torrence screaming “REDRUM!” Don’t you agree? One NSFW image is included below.
 
Burnt Toast The Shining Trading Cards
Say Someone Burns Toast #224
 
Room 237 The Shining Trading Cards
Room 237 #237
 
The Sno-Cat The Shining Trading Cards
The Sno-Cat #242
 
Decomposed The Shining Trading Cards
Decomposed! #240
 
Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘The Shining’ Cuckoo Clock

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
‘The Finishing Line’: The grisly British educational film that scared kids and shocked parents
10.13.2014
07:58 am

Topics:
Movies

Tags:

Blood on the tracks
 
In 1977, a short film was produced in Britain to discourage children from playing on the railway lines and vandalizing trains—both problems in England at the time. But the documentary-style production did more than that: it scared the knickers off of kids and riled up their parents. The subsequent controversy surrounding this educational short was so great that it was ultimately banned. Even today, watching it is a shocking experience not soon forgotten.

Commissioned by British Transport Films (BTF) to be shown in schools, The Finishing Line (1977) is perhaps the most notorious educational film ever produced. The 20 minute short is akin to a gory episode of The Twilight Zone, or a Rod Serling-directed fake documentary. The atmosphere is so odd and the child body count so high, that it’s a wonder anyone thought this was a good idea to show to kids (the ages of the target audience was eight through twelve). Put simply, it’s a child’s nightmare come to life on the screen.

The film was directed by John Krish, a BTF veteran; Krish’s The Elephant Will Never Forget (1953), which documented the end of London’s tram system, is still one of the organization’s most popular movies. In a 2013 interview with the magazine devoted to blood spilled on the screen, Fangoria, the 90-year-old Krish said he was surprised BTF even wanted to make The Finishing Line:

I came up with this idea of a sports day on the railway line, and I was absolutely sure they would turn it down so that I could get on with something else, and bugger me, they loved it. They loved it! The psychologist in the British Transport’s employ said, ‘This is exactly what we need!’

The Finishing Line begins in a festive atmosphere of children and adults gathering for what looks like a day of fun, but the mood quickly turns foreboding, when medical personal appear with preparations for the inevitable carnage that will take place.

In the film, various events are staged on or near the train tracks. A kind of dystopian reality is presented, where games of life and death are the norm. At times, it brings to mind the black comedy Death Race 2000 (1975), in which racecar drivers earn points by killing pedestrians, but there’s no laughing at The Finishing Line. Here, children lose their lives in games staged by adults, and there is little mourning for the dead. In this world, there is no such thing as “innocence.”

Krish’s documentary-style filmmaking creates a tone that is completely unsettling. Weirdly, the film is staged as a child’s fantasy (what kind of kid would fantasize about his classmates being killed?!), yet the realistic look of the film could still be misinterpreted by a young person as an event that actually happened. If nothing else, the shear amount of gore and dead bodies is enough to upset any pre-teen viewer.

Though the director claims it was unintentional, The Finishing Line contains elements of the horror genre. For the last event, Krish filmed the kids walking briskly through a dark tunnel, capturing it in such a way that the children approach the camera as shadowy figures. The scene resembles something straight out of future horror films The Brood (1979) and Children of the Corn (1984). There’s no music, just the sound of hundreds of shuffling footsteps coming closer and closer. It’s very creepy.
 
The Great Tunnel Walk
 
Krish wanted the final moments to resemble the carnage of a war zone after a battle, and the sight of adults and teenagers carrying a hundred or so dead kids—symbolically laying them across the tracks, and doing so with a complete lack of emotion—is truly startling.

“The cumulative effect is shocking, and must have been all the more so for the young audiences to whom the film was screened. Not surprisingly, it immediately generated controversy, even becoming the subject of a Nationwide (BBC, 1969-84) television debate following a television screening of the film. Some commentators and parents worried that children would be traumatized, others that it might actually encourage copycat vandalism. Many defended the film as an appropriately tough response to a serious problem. Nonetheless, in 1979 the film was withdrawn and replaced by the much softer Robbie.” (BFI Screenonline)

All told, Krish has had four of his pictures removed from circulation, telling Fangoria, “I’m the only documentary director who’s had four films banned! And I rejoice in that.” In 2003, he was honored with a retrospective, which included the first public airing of The Finishing Line in over two decades.
 
John Krish
John Krish

Though it may have been inappropriate for the audience it was created for, The Finishing Line stands as a fascinating and significant film from a director still getting his due. It’s a disturbing and strange little picture—it’s also unforgettable.

The short is available for purchase via British Transport Films Collection Vol.7 – The Age Of The Train, and as a bonus on the DVD of Captured, another of Krish’s banned works.

Here it is, The Finishing Line:
 

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Welcome to Scarfolk, the most twisted English village of the 1970s

Posted by Bart Bealmear | Leave a comment
Artist paints generic ghosts over found photographs to haunting and nostalgic effect
10.13.2014
06:38 am

Topics:
Art

Tags:


Spin Me Round
 
Artist Angela Deane’s ghost photography complicates nostalgia with a very simple technique: she drapes the subjects of found snapshots in a “sheet” of white paint, dotting on two little eyes where appropriate. My first impulse was to see if Deane actually takes commissions (you know, for when you want the memory of the company, but not to gaze on your own misguided hairstyle or horrifying fashion sense), and it appears she does, counting Amy Sedaris among her clients. The motivation behind Deane’s work however, is one of anonymity as much as it is of recognition and belonging. Deane says:

These ghosts are the ghosts of moments, of days, of experiences.  With the specifics of identity obscured by paint I like to imagine it’s as if you and I can partake in the memory, share in the experience, allow the snapshot to seem familiar. Let’s share some memories, shall we?

Deane’s ghosts are actually quite cute—reminiscent of a classic Halloween from yesteryear, but there is also a haunting quality to her work (pun only half-intended). Humans are no longer the primary indicator of the time period, so we scan the film quality and details from the setting or landscape to tell when the picture was taken; viewers wander the space of the picture, regardless of its inhabitants’ identity, as if the present is now haunting the past. Nonetheless, the ghostly figures feel familiar, as if scratching off the paint would reveal a favorite uncle, your mother’s best friend from high school, or even your own younger face.
 

Beneath the Palms
 

Untitled
 

All For You
 

Reach for Me Across the Flowers
 

Together For Soup
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
Calm your rage (or work on your handjob technique) with these stress reducing ‘shrooms
10.10.2014
01:59 pm

Topics:
Amusing
Drugs
Food

Tags:


 
Never feel the need to lose your shit again, just grab your handy rubber mushroom and yank the hell out of it! 

... whether it’s financial pressures, relationship problems or overworking – just squeeze the bejesus out of a realistic rubber mushroom and feel your troubles fade away.

 
The stress reducing mushrooms are by Firebox and come in four different varieties: Enoki, Fly Agaric, King Trumpet and Matsutake.

  • Stretch them, twist them, smash them on the desk
  • Japan’s favourite anger management solution
  • Made from durable rubber, they even feel like the real thing
  • Non hallucinogenic, but more effective than magic mushrooms
  • Four different and slightly phallic fungi to choose from

Each mushroom goes for about $9.50 + shipping. They even feel like the real thing...

As a sidenote: THESE MUSHROOMS ARE NOT EDIBLE!!!


 

 

 
Via Boing Boing

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
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