a look back at Gremlins

it’s now time for gremlins.

1. “bring your dog to work day”
2. “threatening to torture an animal, in public, is acceptable if you have a nice coat”
3. “these damn foreign cars”
4. Judge Reinhold.

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5. mom is chopping six hundred onions.

i'm crying because I hate onions.

i’m crying because I hate onions.

6. seriously, you can’t take someone’s dog for breaking your lawn ornament, even when this movie came out that was a bizarre set-up

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seriously, even back then, a nice coat didn’t keep you out of trouble

?7. “I told you, everything is real”

sorry, we're in the wrong suburb

sorry, we’re in the wrong suburb

8. Chinese people are broke too and yet so mysterious and mystical that ‘toothbrush’ is meaningless to them

seriously, motherfucker, we brush our teeth.

seriously, motherfucker, we brush our teeth.

9. sunlight will kill the thing, it’s obviously a fuckin vampire
10. singing the alien hello song from ‘close encounters’ is also a bad sign

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IT DOESN’T APPEAR IN MIRRORS EITHER

11.this guy is old enough to drink and have a bank teller job and lives with his parents, never draws and only once is it mentioned that he’s ‘artsy’, but he has unused art supplies in his room.

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Dying is easy, life is hard

if you don’t like spoilers or are too fragile don’t read any further and avoid the comments.

ethel the actress

this dog was not harmed in the making of this death scene

I usually only watch horror films, spiced with the occasional psychological thriller,sci-fi indy film, or action flick. So recently when someone asked me what my favorite death scene was, from a movie, I first piped up with an obvious one from one of my favorite horror movies.

“No,” she said. “I mean for the impact it had on you. Not for the plot to advance.”
I had to think hard. I mean, very hard. There are so many deaths in the movies I watch, you see, and yet most of them are plot devices, not seriously meaningful beyond that. Not the kind of thing that affects me, really. I mean, even when I watch emotional movies, I don’t get very emotional, and I’ve never cried during a movie (books, yes. movies? no.)

So after a few days of deep thought, I’ve made a list. There are a lot of spoilers in it, and if you don’t like spoilers or are too fragile to handle knowing the end of something don’t read any further and avoid the comments. I’m serious, I’ll just delete comments complaining about spoilers. 

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15 books that will change the way you tattoo (for the better)

owlbooksThere are a lot of great books on art out there, and I’m bound to miss a lot in my list. These are just books I have found incredibly helpful in my work, and which I refer to often.

These are not books of reference images (although I did come up in the time before google images took over, and every shop had its own reference library on site…I still can’t part with all those books!)

These are, instead, books about art in general, about art techniques, or about being an artist that I think apply very well to tattooing. If you have favorites that I do not list, please add a comment and link me to them! I read voraciously and love to find new sources of knowledge.

At least a few of these are free on kindle/ebooks, most are cheap, one or two are pricey, all are available and not rare.

 

An artist is not paid for his labor but for his vision.
To say to the painter that Nature is to be taken as she is, is to say to the player that he may sit on the piano.
~J. M. Whistler

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the horror movie list.

halloween tattoomy list of favorites… (new additions at the end)

the woman – domestic violence, rape, and revenge horror

possession (the one from the 80s) – monsters, divorces, and doppelgangers

altered – aliens and a hermit guy, innawoods

resolution – drug addiction, atmosphere, original premise, creepy spying, innawoods

slither – aliens, bad relationships, marriage, monsters

relic – bad science, monsters, sexy beasts

the seasoning house – brutality, warfare, rape, oppression, and revenge

from beyond – science, monsters, villianous experimentations

pontypool – language, viral plagues, zombies of a sort, bad day at the office

the grey – animal attacks, betrayal, isolation, survival horror, innawoods

the thing (80s) – brilliant. isolation, distrust, betrayal, aliens.

return of the living dead (any of the first three) – zombies that can speak.

dead end – dark humor, great acting, excellent dialogue, ghosts, innawoods

teeth – abstinence-only sex ed, incest, revenge.

trick r treat – werewolves, murderers, ghosts, pumpkins.

pieces – slasher film with lots of suspense moments.

pioughkeepsie tapes (if you’re a fan of true crime documentaries, you’ll love it)

s&man – mockumentary, self-referential to the horror genre and “extreme” video.

V/H/S – anthology film, harpies, ghosts, video nasties.

abcs of death – anthology, some artsy, some feminist, some violence, zombies.

the masters of horror series. varies

memories of a murder – serial killers, korean horror.

audition – best bad guy ever, gory

funny games – self-aware horror that breaks fourth wall
cabin in the woods – same

the pact – murders, ghosts, incest, abuse.

the host – monsters, claustrophobia

the frighteners – ghosts, bad cgi, JEFFREY COMBS’s BODY IS AN INSTRUMENT OF PAIN

the road (not the one with viggo in it. the foreign one)- ghost road

the shrine – demons, religions, eastern european fear

severance – killers, history, warfare, strife, business, bad days at the office, innawoods

andromeda strain – viral plagues, government fuckups

the mist – monsters, religious nuttery, perfect ending

the shining – domestic abuse, ghosts, evil places, creepy kids

the descent – claustrophobia, monsters, betrayal, great characters/acting, innawoods

anamorph – crime thriller, dark arts, murder

the stuff – consumerism, monsters, plagues, cassandra complexes, industrial espionage

troll – (NOT TROLL 2!) – naked julia louis-dreyfus, sonny bono, monsters, fairy badness, creepy kids

nightwatch – fate, monsters, secret worlds, russian behavior

primal – aussie mayhem, monsters, claustrophobia, isolation, innawoods horror

dogtooth – incest, abuse, control issues, isolation

barton fink – isolation, art horror, serial killers, mayhem, the life of the mind

call of cthulu – silent horror, monsters, elder gods, madness

dead man – existential horror, art horror, isolation, innawoods, ghosts

ravenous – cannibals, innawoods, isolation

american werewolf in london – monsters.

dog soldiers – monsters, betrayal, war games

may – social anxiety, medical weirdness, frankensteining

they live – a documentary

the changeling – possessed wheelchair, kid ghosts, perfect soundtrack

contracted – sexual repression, rape, body horror, gay rights being impeded

 

REAL THINGS THAT HAPPENED:

cropsey, dark days, the dust bowl (ken burns), tell me and I will forget, kinjongilia, reel injun, titicut follies, just melvin just evil, child of rage, a place for pedophiles, children underground, this entire series

The Woman.

Originally Published on: Nov 19, 2012

What are you afraid of?

I mean, in your everyday life. What do you actually fear?

I personally am not afraid that someone in a hockey mask will chop me to pieces at summer camp. I’m not really worried about zombies, monsters, or mutated townsfolk in New Mexico wastelands. I don’t shudder to think that cave creatures will eat me, and I don’t believe in ghosts- not ghosty ghosts, anyway. I’m an atheist so demons don’t frighten me.

Shit, what IS there to fear?

The things that scare me are things that are possible.

I used to get a scared thrill from serial killer sort of movies. Pioughkeepsie Tapes is a great example of this, and I liked it because I watch and read a lot of true-crime nonfiction. The cop’s eye view, though- it makes another layer there, a bit of distance. No matter how the suspense that “the killer could be watching this with you in the theater” is attempted, those crimes are in the past, and therefore not something possible, something frightening.

Movies like “Henry” or “I Spit on Your Grave” are along these lines. The plot is possible, (though unlikely) and the themes of vulnerability are frightening. There’s only so many times I can be frightened by the same slasher plot, so many times that the thought of a serial killer, the slim chance of that, can make me horrified. And if a film is a remake- for me, it barely counts. I have a hard time immersing myself in the film if I have seen it before. I spend my time looking for plot changes, comparing the new cast to the old, rather than suspending my disbelief.

So what actually scares me? When I see a movie with a character that is narcissistic, abusive- someone who is manipulative enough to pass as normal to others- I start to get a little scared. Domestic abuse scares the shit out of me. Rape and child abuse, neglect and sexual assault. Movies like A Serbian Film scare the crap out of me- those things happen, that stuff exists, and worse. And there are people all around who seem normal who pay per view…

So, given all this, The Woman is a great horror movie. And not just a great horror movie, but potentially a game-changer.

To have a female character not run, not once, not scream- during an entire movie. Regardless of how this is accomplished within the plot, it’s a complete reversal of the usual characterization of women in horror films. The father’s slick, brazen control over his family and his maltreatment of the women in it is believable, and familiar. The first slap is almost a release of the tension in the film. In an abusive relationship, every moment is spent in tension, waiting for the shoe to drop- and the movie does a great job of building that tension, and then releasing it.

Of course the ending is extreme. However there is one scene which stands out- as the Woman is killing the father, she pumps her arm inside his wound, staring into his eyes. It’s definitely a sexual moment, a reversal, again, of the usual theme in horror. She’s fisting his wound, violating him physically in a violent manner. Usually in horror only women are violated this way, and with this much eroticism to the violence.

The character of the son, with his nascent sociopathy and sadism, was absolutely chilling. Men who are as disturbed and abusive as the father in this film do NOT make good parents to daughters OR sons. It’s questionable whether that character could have been redeemed at any point, whether it’s in his genes or taught- but that he purposely explains his motives and actions to the son suggests it is both.

The mother’s hopelessness in the situation and her seeming inability to do anything useful is very accurate. In an abusive relationship of long standing, the abused person becomes listless, unable to make decisions. The mother in this film has obviously been taught well that there is no hope for her; that there is no escape, and that her situation, bad as it is, is the best she will ever get.

This is horror. This is something that happens, that CAN happen. People like the father in this film exist, and they are not “crazy-looking”, they are not wearing skin masks, out on the edge of society. They preach in the church and sell the real estate and run the bank. They are high-functioning and they exist. When they’re caught, IF they are caught, nobody can believe it. Often the abused in the family are not believed. And through slow escalation, their abuses can eventually become extreme and unbelievable. I have to add this character to the list of accurately-depicted narcissists in film. He’s apt, he’s correct, and his casual ownership of others, his assumed control over them, is exactly how these people operate in real life.

The only real problems with this, for me, were the crappy, overclocked soundtrack (WAY TOO LOUD, wtf?) and the allowance of bits of humor in the violence and catharsis at the end. There is no reason to shy away and lighten the mood during a cathartic scene- just let the intensity stay high, please. Hitting the dog-sister in the head with a goofy “clang” doesn’t add much to the scene, and dilutes the character of the woman into slapstick, instead of wordless menace.

I read a lot about crap like extreme neglect, and feral children, and I thought the main character was very well written on that level.

This movie triggered me, and scared me. It’s the first movie I’ve seen in a while, too, in which the bad guys did NOT look like cartoon versions of my friends, (*coughinsidiouscough*, *hic30daysofnightcup*) but like the kind of people I have known in real life to be completely rotten.

So- yes, it’s a great horror movie. It scared the crap out of me, right up to the ending- which made me feel better. Just like any great horror movie, you get to ride away, while leatherface dances alone.

yelpers

tumblr_n7bjqcpvJp1sfnn0mo3_r3_500side note: they have the wrong website listed for me, and it’s been years since I worked in Corvallis. but don’t let that stop you!

did you have a mind-altering experience getting tattooed by me? If so, hit up the yelp page about me and share your mystical insight with the world. Now, yelp has a history of extortion, and of treating businesses badly. But I find it to be a fun place for you guys to express the strangeness of your time with me. I hate the way yelp treats restaurants in particular, people seem to be so mean to the wait staff then write on there to brag about it…Let’s make my little corner of yelp into something different. Something a little more…off-center.

You can see by the reviews that have already been posted that I hope you feel free to express yourself in detail and with a mind to the hidden aspects of your own experience.

Here’s the link, go hit it with your best flowery and psychedelic prose. The closer your review is to a David Lynch plot, the more I will love you for writing it. Also, tip your wait staff well as hell. Serving people food is one of the most emotionally draining jobs on earth.

 

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juice reviews three! rocketfuel, vaporchef, gremlin, and diy.

I got a pile of samples from rocketfuel last week, and left them to steep while I was gone camping out. I also have a handful of other flavors to taste tonight! YAY excitement! I’m using a plain ole 510 dripping atty on an ego twist at whatever setting tastes best. All juices are as close to 100% VG as I was able to get. They’re all at either 18 or 12mg nic content, too.

HORRIFYING UPDATE. I have now also spilled ALL of the ol’ river all over myself. That’s two bottles spilled, one of them my favorite of the bunch. GAWDAMMIT SHITWHORE.

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more flavor thoughts, and summertime grilling.

kozmo's summertime

kozmo’s summertime

I’ve tried another batch of flavors, and have some thoughts on them. (for those of you looking for the starter kits/basic vaporizer setups, this place has the nicest cheap ones right now. I’ll post a different place if I find a better one.)

Newly added to the all-day vape category:

Honey fig tobacco from the Plume Room. This is luxurious, slightly sweet on the exhale, and rich. Along with Honey nut and Sweet cream, it’s in my pocket now when I leave the house.

Bread from Ecblend. It’s dry. It’s got the same nice crisp dryness as the Graham cracker flavor I like so much, but it also has…sourdough? Some sort of definite savory undertone. It’s very, very good- if you’re looking for something that’s unsweet, this will work.

Vanilla custard from Gremlin Juice. This is the best custard I’ve ever had. And it’s got the right vanilla in it- it’s not flowery at all or artificial-tasting. It’s a good, heavy dessert flavor.

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Sociopathic film characters, the master list.

I know- it’s been done. But I want to talk about a few characters I find really interesting.

There are spoilers in here. Get over it.

Most top-ten lists leave out the female characters (of which there are plenty), child characters, and characters that are more quietly menacing than flamboyant. Most sociopaths don’t want to be noticed (with the lone outlier of narcissists) and prefer to be taken for unassuming victims of circumstance. There are some of course, who commit desperate and crazed acts, but they’re less the majority than you might think.

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the bechdel test.

The Bechdel test is simple. Your book, film, or other work passes if it contains two named female characters, who speak to each, about something other than a man (or men).

I actually think about this while reading or watching a movie. Some movies that have been hailed as feminist masterpieces (by morons *cough*) don’t pass this test. And some movies I love but which are seen as just awful to women- DO pass.

The corollary I’d give, is that if your work doesn’t pass the Bechdick test as well, you are off the hook. This second test is simple- if your film, book, or other work contains two men, with names, who speak to each other about something other than women, it has passed the test.

Some works contain only one character, two male characters, or a mixed pair. These works are officially off the hook, not liable to the test. Since they wouldn’t pass the Bechdick test, you can’t apply Bechdel to them either.

However, a book that passes one MUST pass the other as well, or it’s simply not realistic. Even fantasy works should maintain enough realism in the characters to make me believe they are real, to flesh them out. If a work doesn’t pass the Bechdel test, I find my suspension of disbelief waning, and my interest in the (male) characters almost lost- since some characters are not realistic, none can be.

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