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Dangerous Finds: Bill Cosby mean to teen Janis Ian; Michael Moore doc; Christian snake handler dies
07.29.2015
01:51 pm

Topics:
Current Events

Tags:
Dangerous Finds


 
Bernie Sanders Builds a People’s Army: Across the country, left-wing activists and veterans of the Occupy movement are organizing for Bernie Sanders—and think the Vermont socialist can topple Hillary. (The Daily Beast)

Does “Creative Destruction” Include the State?: Everyone lauds “creative destruction” when it shreds monopolies and disrupts private enterprise “business as usual.” This raises an obvious question few dare ask: does this inevitable process of creative destruction include the state? If not, why not? Aren’t the state and the central bank the ultimate monopolies begging to be disrupted for the benefit of all? If government is inefficient and unproductive, shouldn’t it be “creatively destroyed” in the same fashion as private enterprise? The obvious answer is yes. (Charles Hugh Smith/Of Two Minds)

Regular People Are Totally Useless When Trying to Use Handguns In Self-Defense: Sorry wannabe Jack Bauers, turns out you suck at saving the day. (AlterNet)

In the Age of Trump, Will Democrats Sell Out More, Or Less? The collapse of the GOP gives the Democrats an opportunity to abandon “lesser evilism” — but they probably won’t. (Matt Taibbi/Rolling Stone)

Mathematician says Kansas voting machines need to be audited: A Wichita State University mathematician said she has seen enough odd patterns in Kansas election results that she thinks it’s time to check the accuracy of some voting machines. Election officials are making it as difficult as possible for her to get the data she needs. (KMBC Kansas City)

Why Bernie Sanders Is The Millennials’ President: Are you feelin’ the Bern? Plenty of young people are. (The Odyssey)

Trump’s presence in first GOP debate makes prep challenging for candidates: Ya think? Trump is allegedly doing ZERO prep for the debate. Why should he? He’s quite adept at calling other people “losers” and that act plays very, very well to the Republican base. No point in messing with a successful formula. (Washington Post)

Heavy Social Media Use Linked With Mental Health Issues In Teens: More than two hours of use per day can spell trouble. (Huffington Post)

Michael Moore film to attack US government’s state of ‘infinite war’: Where to Invade Next was made in secret because of surveillance concerns. The film satirizes America’s ‘constant need to have an enemy to keep the military-industrial complex alive.’ (The Guardian)

The absolute worst advice we give to Americans struggling to pay rent: In urban centers around the country, rental prices are soaring. Cities like San Francisco, Seattle, and New York City routinely report double-digit increases that make it nearly impossible for residents to make ends meet. But moving someplace “cheaper” ain’t all it’s cracked up to be, either… (The Daily Dot)

Christian snake handler dies: Bye dummy! (The Raw Story)

The Great Paradox of the Democratic Presidential Race: There is no shortage of bold, liberal ideas from the candidates that have little chance of getting past Congress. While they compete over who can produce the ideas that most satisfy the party’s base, the proposals they are offering face a stark reality: Hardly any of them are likely to be approved by Congress, where Republicans have an almost iron-clad grip on the House of Representatives for the foreseeable future. (Bloomberg)

Janis Ian says Bill Cosby spread lesbian rumors about her as a teen, tried to blacklist her from TV: The singer/songwriter writes on Facebook that she met Cosby at a Smothers Brothers taping in the 1960s. As if you needed another reason to hate Bill Cosby, enjoy this performance by a young Janis Ian. What kind of asshole would go out of their way to be mean to this kid???

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Attention, smart people: Over 100,000 have RSVP’d for tonight’s Bernie Sanders mega-event


 

“There are no coincidences, but sometimes the pattern is more obvious.”—Neil Innes

Attention, smart people! There is a MAJOR POLITICAL EVENT that’s happening—TODAY July 29th, 2015—across this nation that you might not have heard about for Bernie Sanders. Tonight Sanders will be speaking via the Internet to over 100,000 heavily-motivated people meeting for the first time at 3,520 Bernie-related house parties and get-togethers in bars and restaurants and union halls and church basements, etcetera, etcetera, all across the United States.
 

 
Yes, over 100,000 people have found other like-minded people in their area via this map and RSVP’d to get informed and to volunteer for Sanders’ increasingly astonishing campaign. I live in Los Angeles where there are well over 100 such gatherings. I’m married, but I would assume that a lot of smart, good-looking people would attend such events. Aren’t you even curious? Of course you are. Why not search for your zip code and see what happens?

Has there ever been a larger, more dynamic and more INSTANTANEOUS grassroots movement in American history? If there has been one, they must’ve kept it a secret. Even the Tea party movement didn’t grow nearly as fast as this. And after today’s event, what happens next?

I can’t wait to find out.

The sky’s the limit, but the goal is the White House. This can happen, people.

Bernie Sanders for President: It’s time to take it to the next level, America. He can’t do it without YOU.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Behold the ‘Star Wars’ rice paddy
07.29.2015
10:54 am

Topics:
Movies

Tags:
Star Wars
rice


 
A couple of British farmers named Bower and Chorley invented the crop circle as an easy and fun way to spawn a generation’s worth of crazy UFO conspiracy theories. In Japan they’re more showbiz about their version of this, which is to make elaborate tableaux in rice paddies, which are mostly green as opposed to the wheaty amber of crop designs. A small town called Inakadate in Aomori Prefecture in northern Japan has an annual event that attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors to see its rice paddy artworks. They’ve been doing it since 1993 with no sign of letting up.

The most common variety of rice plant grows in bright green stalks, but if you plant strains of different colors in carefully selected positions, you can make lines and shapes, a bit like these awesome examples of LEGO art—including Hunter S. Thompson! In this one you can see a rice paddy mosaic with Marilyn Monroe in her famous subway grate pose from The Seven-Year Itch. It only takes about a month from planting to final fruition, but they disappear pretty quickly too.
 

 
Last month Inakadate unveiled a Star Wars design, featuring C3PO and R2D2 as well as some sort of blobby planet-shaped droid I don’t recognize. (Yes, I’m old!

Here’s a fuller picture—“conceptual art for the final field” (click to see a larger version):
 

 

 
via RocketNews24
 

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Kardashian human centipede shirt
07.29.2015
10:33 am

Topics:
Amusing
Fashion

Tags:
Kim Kardashian
t-shirts

Kim Kardashian human centipede shirt
Kim Kardashian Human Centipede shirt
 
I honestly don’t know where to begin with this collection of shirts by Cleveland, OH company, Rage On!. Except that I agree with their motto as their strangely wonderful shirts truly are “pushing the limits” of fashion.

In addition to the demure image of everyone’s least favorite famewhore, Kim Kardashian getting a little human centipede action with what looks like her sisters (I’m ashamed to admit that I think that looks like Kim’s sister Khloe at the end of the centipede chain), there are a multitude of other bizarre yet cool shirts in Rage On’s! collection that I think you will dig eyeballing. The shirts are an all-over print so according to Rage On!, “people will be able to accurately double take your awesome shirt and confirm their jealousy of you!”

Some images are NSFW - which is code for “you are about to see some fantastic shit.” The shirts themselves will run you anywhere from $50 - $60 a pop.
 
Ice T, Ice Cube, Mr. T shirt
Ice T, Ice Cube, Mr. T in a tea pitcher shirt
 
More after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
OMG, there’s a Slim Goodbody-esque anatomical sleeping bag
07.29.2015
10:26 am

Topics:
Amusing
Television

Tags:
Slim Goodbody


 
I only remember bits and pieces of Slim Goodbody AKA “the Superhero of Health” from my childhood. He had a TV show on PBS in 1980 called Inside Story but I don’t recall ever actually sitting through an entire episode. BUT I do remember pausing on his show for a few moments once just to gaze in wonderment at his his skin-tight anatomical suit and distinctive ‘fro. It’s a memory burned into my brain for some reason.

When I stumbled across this “anatomically correct” sleeping bag—or is this a “body bag” in this case—my mind went immediately to Mr. Slim Goodbody. What a perfect way to pay homage to this childhood “Superhero of Health”!

Now what’s really sad is I can’t find this sleeping available for purchase anywhere. I’m always led back to a Japanese site that gives me a “404” error. Maybe I just didn’t look hard enough?


 

 

 

 
Below, Slim Goodbody sings “The Digestion Song:

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
‘Hype!’: The 1996 documentary that captured grunge’s explosive rise (and immediate co-optation)
07.29.2015
08:46 am

Topics:
Movies
Music

Tags:
documentary
grunge
Hype


Vogue’s 1992 grunge feature, “Grunge & Glory,” becasue nothing says “grunge” like Naomi Campbell in Perry Ellis!
 
The “grunge speak” hoax of 1992 may be the greatest youth culture response to unwanted media hype in the history of “shut up, old man!” A reporter for The New York Times was working on a grunge story for its Style of the Times section—a little exposé on the scene’s hip, new slang. Trouble is, there really wasn’t such thing as a grunge slang, so when the Times contacted Sub Pop Records receptionist, she just made up a bunch of silly shit. The result was a comically ridiculous list of phony jargon titled “Lexicon of Grunge: Breaking the Code.” When Thomas Frank over at The Baffler pointed out that no one was calling anyone a “cob nobbler” or a “lamestain,” the Times was so miffed that they demanded Frank apologize before finally realizing they’d been had.

Like the grunge speak hoax, Hype! is a fascinating record of the grunge phenomenon, specifically because it’s about the tension between the scene and the media. The bands themselves tell the story (and I mean nearly all the bands—Mudhoney, Nirvana, Soundgarden, The Gits, The Melvins, Mono Men, Pearl Jam, 7 Year Bitch and a host of less famous acts), and though there is a genuine love for the Seattle scene and the community it produced, there is already a bitter awareness of grunge’s fate. Members of 7 Year Bitch point out the sexism of the coverage women in bands receive, Eddie Vedder expresses anguish over the immediate commercialization of the grunge phenomenon and the discomfort of living the shadow of Kurt Cobain looms large for many bands.

Far from the bitter, childish personas so often associated with angry young people and their guitars, the subjects of Hype! are thoughtful and clear-eyed, still professing a genuine love for the music and the organic nature of the scene, despite the obvious reality that Grunge has been thoroughly appropriated for mass consumption.
 

 
Via Network Awesome

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
‘Nightmare Feddy,’ ‘Anna Montana’ and other Chinese import toy knock-off fails
07.29.2015
08:21 am

Topics:
Amusing
Pop Culture

Tags:
toys
Freddy Krueger
engrish


Photo via i-mockery.com
 
Several years ago I first became aware of “Nightmare Feddy,” a Chinese bootleg doll of Freddy Krueger from the popular A Nightmare on Elm Street horror franchise, and I’ve been laughing about him ever since. I’m not sure what it is specifically about the name “Nightmare Feddy” that I find so funny, but its one of those things that pops into my head from time to time and I just kind of start laughing to myself over it. “Nightmare Feddy.” It’s just so stupid.
 

Photo via i-mockery.com
 
Apparently I’m not the only person obsessed with “Feddy.” I’m no toy collector, but I’ve wanted one of these Chinese failure figures for years now—I’ve kept my eyes peeled for one in the wild, to no avail. They turn up regularly on eBay,  usually priced between $40 to $80. Yeah, I want this dumb conversation piece, but not forty bucks worth.

But still, just look at this stupid thing. Look at its shoes!
 

Photo via i-mockery.com
 
“Nightmare Feddy” might be a scarce, improbable collector’s item, but a trip to your local Dollar Tree will undoubtedly reveal shelves upon shelves of strangely-titled knock-off toys which are good for similar ESL laughs.

Here’s a treasury of Chinese toy knock-off fails:
 

Feddy’s cousin: “Monster”
 

“Spook Chasers”
 

“Anna Montana”
 
More Chinese toy fails after the jump…

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Cover versions: Debbie Harry stars in pulp romance novels based on Blondie songs
07.29.2015
07:08 am

Topics:
Art
Music
Punk

Tags:
Blondie
Debbie Harry

Debbie Harry faux pulp novel
“Rip Her to Shreds” faux pulp romance novel cover. Title taken from a song found on Blondie’s eponymous 1976 debut album

These clever faux pulp romance novels featuring Debbie Harry by Atlanta-based pop artist, Zteven are pretty much the best things I’ve seen this week. And I see a lot of cool stuff on a daily basis.

Not only did Zteven manage to portray Harry as one of the coolest salacious sirens to ever grace the cover of a smutty, old school pulp romance novel, he also incorporated the lyrics of songs from Blondie’s catalog in the titles and descriptions. There are even a few sly nods to Blondie co-founder and guitarist Chris Stein, as well as songwriter and producer Mike Chapman who worked with the group on their breakthrough 1978 record, Parallel Lines as well as Eat to the Beat (1979), Autoamerican (1980) and The Hunter (1982). The set of four prints, framed, will run you $40.
 
One Way or Another faux pulp novel with Debbie Harry
“One Way or Another” faux pulp romance novel cover. Title taken from a song that appears on 1978’s Parallel Lines
 
More Blondie cover versions after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Dangerous Finds: ‘Scott Walker smells his own poop’; Trump/Palin 2016; Neighbors From Hell
07.28.2015
02:42 pm

Topics:
Current Events

Tags:
Dangerous Finds


 
Scott Walker’s Campaign Stop In Philly Goes Hilariously Off The Rails: Charlie Brown-like Presidential candidate visits Philadelphia, cuts line to buy a Philly cheesesteak, leaves his trash on the table and has protestors greeting him carrying signs that read “Scott Walker smells his own poop.” (TPM)

‘The video is not good’: Cincinnati braces for footage release in campus cop killing of Sam Dubose: Not exactly a city with the greatest racial relations at the best of times, riots are predicted by some. Chief Jeffrey Blackwell, of Cincinnati police said “We’re just trying to do our best to be prepared for whatever might come out of it.”(Raw Story)

Sarcasm may make you more creative: Practice with close friends only. Scientists think that sarcasm may lead to greater cognitive function because in order to understand and convey a sarcastic comment, the brain uses creative thinking. (Popular Science)

Inside Rand Paul’s downward spiral: His theory of the 2016 primary — that Republican voters would reward a candidate who promised fresh ideas and an unconventional approach — has not borne out in reality. He was once a serious contender for the White House. Now, his campaign is fighting over what went wrong. (Politico)

Trump Would ‘Love’ Sarah Palin in His Cabinet: ‘She’s a Special Person’ sez The Donald. Well, yeah, but “special” with quotes around it. (Mediaite)

Wisconsin Judges Receive Campaign Funding from Party Accused of Corruption with Scott Walker: Four Wisconsin Supreme Court judges dismissed an investigation into whether Gov. Scott Walker (R) violated election laws during his 2012 gubernatorial campaign and ordered that all evidence be destroyed. The justices who killed the investigation received campaign funds from the very same groups that Walker was suspected of coordinating with. He’s ‘the new Nixon’! (Ring of Fire)

Koch brothers summon Koch-whores Bush, Cruz, Walker, Rubio to SoCal confab: The crowded field of GOP contenders is competing aggressively for the support of uncommitted conservative mega-donors who are ready to spend about a billion bucks on the 2016 election. (Politico)

Bernie Sanders: The Vox conversation. The barnstorming socialist talks to Ezra Klein. (Vox)

After Two Years, White House Finally Responds to Snowden Pardon Petition — With a “No”: The White House on Tuesday ended two years of ignoring a hugely popular whitehouse.gov petition calling for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden to be “immediately issued a full, free, and absolute pardon,” saying thanks for signing, but no. (The Intercept)

One Email That Proves Campaign Finance Laws Are A Joke: Super PACs and candidates can’t coordinate, except when they obviously do. (Huffington Post)

Dummies for Trump: Donald Trump’s surge is all about less-educated Americans: “Trump’s support is strongest with Republicans in the Midwest, conservatives across the country who do not have a college degree and (perhaps not surprisingly) those who report the most negative views of immigration ...” Flabbergasting, isn’t it? (Washington Post)

In the vein of ‘Go the Fuck to Sleep,’ here’s ‘Neighbors From Hell: An American Bedtime Story’ new from Feral House.

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Knife-wielding nude dude playing banjo subdued by police after two hour standoff
07.28.2015
01:12 pm

Topics:
Crime

Tags:
banjo


 
Not something you see every day or even most days or hopefully ever, if you’re lucky. Neighbors of a man, identified by Vancouver, WA police as Andrew Helmsworth, reported seeing him walking around naked carrying a knife on Sunday afternoon.

When police officers arrived on the scene, as reported by KPTV, they found Helmsworth outside his house, refusing to surrender.

Instead he went inside, put on some short pants and picked up a banjo, which he then proceeded to serenade them with. As seen in the video below, Helmsworth was subdued with a non-lethal round and taken into custody. The standoff lasted more than two hours.

(Rubber bullets, eh? Surely I can’t be the only one hearing about this thinking that this naked, knife-wielding guy is DAMNED LUCKY THAT HE’S WHITE, now, can I?)
 

KPTV - FOX 12

Posted by Richard Metzger | Leave a comment
Nuns Gone Wild: Vintage photos of sisters letting their habits down
07.28.2015
11:32 am

Topics:
Amusing
Belief

Tags:
nuns


 
I went to an all-girls Catholic high school. Sadly, not once did I ever catch one of the nuns who taught at my school behaving “badly” or “out of character” for someone married to Christ, but boy do I wish I would have. These nuns gave detention left and right for the dumbest, most innocuous shit ever (like my socks being the wrong shade of blue or my skirt being 1/4 of an inch too short). The nuns had it out for my ass. I was convinced they were evil robots not nice ladies doing the Lord’s bidding.

Nuns still make me nervous to this very day…

So to my surprise, I found these vintage photos of nuns “letting their habits down” and even a few of them being slightly naughty a turning point in my appreciation for nuns: Apparently they’re not ruler-slapping robots after all. I could hang with some of these nuns!


 

 

 

 
More after the jump…
 

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Recently unearthed ‘Dr. Strangelove’ promo reel with alternate takes—narrated by Kubrick himself
07.28.2015
10:29 am

Topics:
Movies

Tags:
Stanley Kubrick
Dr. Strangelove


 
This fascinating footage was posted about a year ago on YouTube, representing the first time in decades, if ever, that it had been made available for public viewing. It’s a promo reel for Dr. Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, lasting roughly 20 minutes (it’s broken up into 2 YouTube videos) that was recorded off the wall from the projection of the scarce 35mm reel with what appears to be Kubrick himself providing a kind of play-by-play for the various scenes that are depicted—many of which have become utterly iconic by this time.

It was the essential blog Cinephilia and Beyond who first spotted this, to my knowledge. The reel includes, as Open Culture’s charmingly Strangelove-obsessed Colin Marshall put it, “the B52s circling constantly, refueling in midair; Brigadier General Jack Ripper’s sudden order to bomb Russia; General Buck Turgidson’s wee-hour departure for the ‘War Room’; the siege of Burpelson Air Force Base; Group Captain Lionel Mandrake’s struggle for the recall code and subsequent confrontation with the ‘prevert’-fixated Colonel Bat Guano; President Merkin Muffley’s bad news-breaking call to Russian Premier Dmitri Kissoff; the titular German expatriate scientist’s plan to restart society after the nuclear apocalypse.”

The footage is undeniably raw—considering it was filmed from a projected image—and some of the takes are unfamiliar. This was a work in progress of one of the most galvanizing cinematic successes of the 20th century, and it’s fascinating to hear the flat, Bronx-bred accent of the master walk the viewer through the movie. It’s not clear what the purpose of this promo reel was, but Cain Rodriguez at The Playlist speculates that the idea may have been “to placate investors since the satirical elements are somewhat downplayed.”

Continues after the jump…

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Funky glasses give you psychedelic visual effects without LSD
07.28.2015
10:00 am

Topics:
Drugs
Science/Tech

Tags:
LSD
optometry


 
Supplying more fun than can reasonably be expected at the optician’s, these intriguing lenses created by Hungarian designer Bence Agoston for a 3D printer enable psychedelic visual experiences while requiring the insertion of round optical lenses into the waiting slots—the effects include “a landscape modified by combinations of colors and patterns.” Anyone who remembers Dr. Timothy Leary might hear in those words connection to good ol’ lysergic acid diethylamide, which, even in this age of rampant drug legalization, is still a Schedule I controlled substance.

The glasses came about through a class project in which each student was assigned another student for whom they were tasked with designing some personal object. Agoston and his classmate quickly found a connection in music, so he looked to design an item that would enhance the experience of listening to music. Said Agoston,
 

The person for whom I was designing, whose name I pulled from a hat, first had to get to know each other to see if we could find a common point. I interviewed my “client” and luckily he really likes music and he always listens to music while he is traveling. That became the point for our connection because I also love music, but I just listen to it, really a first stage kind of activity. When embarking on this project my goal was to take it to a second stage and give the user a way to experience music by both listening to it and altering their visual experience of it.

 
The frames are 3D-printed in ABS plastic and can accept up to three of the set of six patterned lenses. The lenses can be rotated in relationship to each other to provide a virtually endless array of psychedelic viewing experiences, which work especially well when looking out of the window of a moving vehicle. The glasses also partially obscure vision, so it’s quite clear that the glasses should in all instances be worn by passengers, not drivers.

Amusingly, Agoston based his selection of colors to use in his lenses on colors most often found on album covers featuring indie psychedelic music, but he may come up with different series of colors for other kinds of music.
 

 
via 3Dprint

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
Kinky dollhouse furniture for your own tiny BDSM dungeon
07.28.2015
09:35 am

Topics:
Amusing
Sex

Tags:
BDSM
dollhouses

Miniature dollhouse bondage chair with handcuffs
Miniature dollhouse bondage chair with handcuffs

Super goth and miniature artist Jenny Nightfall is a UK based dollhouse furniture maker with a penchant for evil little things that definitely don’t belong in your daughter’s—or son’s, I don’t judge and neither should you—dollhouse.
 
Miniature Customised Mannequin dressed in a black latex skirt
Miniature customised mannequin dressed in a black latex skirt and choker

Of particular interest in Nightfall’s large collection of unusual items is her line of BDSM-themed dollhouse furniture. Made by hand using all kinds of materials including leather and latex, Nightfall’s kinky furniture is made at a 1/12 scale. And she DID NOT skimp on the details. For instance, her miniature bondage/fetish cabinet includes an assortment of tiny implements you would expect to find in any well stocked BDSM environment like leather paddles, whips, naughty books, handcuffs, a spreader bar, rope, candles, plugs, bondage hooks, a mask, a ball gag, erotic playing cards, spiked stiletto heels and much more.

Nightfall also has an extensive line of horror/goth/steampunk dollhouse furniture if that’s more your thing (and who knew this was a thing until now?). The BDSM pieces by Nightfall, which seem collectable on their own even if you don’t have a dollhouse, run from about $15 - $160 each.
 
Miniature dollhouse BDSM cabinet with many accessories
Miniature dollhouse BDSM cabinet and accessories
 
The contents of the drawers in the BDSM miniature cabinet
The contents of the drawers in the miniature BDSM cabinet
 
Miniature dollhouse BDSM cage with pink leather cushioning
Miniature dollhouse BDSM cage with pink leather cushioning and working door
 
Continues after the jump…

Posted by Cherrybomb | Leave a comment
Ultimate Americana: Portraits of sleazy 70’s motels
07.28.2015
07:00 am

Topics:
Art
History

Tags:
1970s
motels


 
Mike Mandel is best known in the art world as one half of Larry Sultan and Mike Mandel, the guerrilla artists that terrorized the Bay Area in the 1970s with their scathing billboard “advertisements” featuring flaming oranges and mushroom clouds. At first glance, the strange installations were graphically cohesive enough to blend in with the warm, modern scenery—the exact sort of scenery Mandel captured in his motel photography. Traveling across the country for this or that art project, Mandel started out collecting postcards from sleazy little motels, but eventually started taking pictures himself, taking the viewer on a sort of ghostly tour of long-gone 70s design and road culture.

...traveling throughout the country, my girlfriend at the time, Alison Woolpert, and I would stay at some, shall we say, “economy” motels. We pulled into one in Texas on a wintry night and upon waking in the morning we realized that the sheets had not been changed after the visit of the previous motel guest. When we indignantly complained to the owner he shot us back a dirty look, “What do you expect for five dollars?” What we did expect was that no matter how shabby, beaten down or forgotten a motel might have become, there was always a motel postcard to be had: a memento of a one night stop, a promotional calling card, a free mailable note card to report back on the progress of a vacation to those back home.

We would often take the back roads, sometimes follow old Route 66, and we would find those sad, forsaken motels that had been sucked almost out of existence by the newer corporate chains situated just off an exit ramp on the newer highways. We bypassed Motel 6, Travelodge and Howard Johnson’s. After all, their postcards were usually just the same design with a different address. But we’d go out of our way to stop at every independent motel we could find in hopes of finding a postcard that would be even more banal than the one we had just found down the road.

To the modern eye, everything looks retro and trashy (especially if you’ve ever stayed in a motel that hasn’t redecorated since this period), but the complete lack of human subjects gives the series a stark, tidy effect. I’d imagine a hotel could get some serious kitsch-seeker traffic if they tried to decorate like this today. Stay in a cheap, sleazy shithole and be “ironic.” What a great country we live in, eh?
 

 

 

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Amber Frost | Leave a comment
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