"Do you ever marvel at how there is not a single part of the planet that has not been died upon?" Dr. Paul Koudounaris probably has, given his interest in regional traditions regarding death and ways of honoring (and living with) the dead, with a focus on charnel houses and ossuaries. He has a website titled Empire de la Mort, "being an online resource for charnel houses and burial catacombs," and includes a section on skeletal reliquaries and individual mummies and other miscellaneous sites. His website is a bit dated in design, if not content, and he also posts on Facebook as Empire of Death and on Instagram as hexenkult. (Paul Koudounaris, previously)
Twittering from the Circus of the Dead A short story from Joe Hill, from the May 2016 edition of Nightmare Magazine.
Santana, Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead were filmed on February 4, 1970 by WNET. Each band had two songs on TV, and then they all jammed together. Not a single word: just music. Article about the show. The set list for the show with a video of each song is inside. [more inside]
According to Gamastura, Youtube stars like Seananners may be breaking FTC disclosure guidelines. Adam "SeaNanners" Montoya has heavily promoted a new video game called Dead Realm on his Youtube channel. He does not mention that he has a financial stake in the game's publisher, 3BlackDot, in every video about the game. The FTC has specific guidelines for Youtubers and product endorsement, which Adam (and others) have ignored. [more inside]
On January 31st, Burnie Burns of Rooster Teeth posted that animator Monty Oum was in critical condition after a minor medical procedure, and that he might not recover. Yesterday it was announced that he had died. He was 33 years old. [more inside]
This is a collection of Francisco "Puree Tomatoes" Taccir's blog posts from Myspace and Friendster from 2005 – 2010. Tomatoes was a writer, artist, and addict who was born on February 26. 1977. He died on October 10, 2010 from a heroin overdose. [more inside]
12/20, yet another apocalypse falls upon the world. The death of Winamp is upon us. Today on the Winamp homepage, it was announced: "Winamp.com and associated web services will no longer be available past December 20, 2013. Additionally, Winamp Media players will no longer be available for download. Please download the latest version before that date..." [more inside]
There are a few ways to end up on Hart Island. One third of its inhabitants are infants—some parents couldn’t afford a burial, others didn’t realize what a “city burial” meant when they checked it on the form. Many of the dead here were homeless, while others were simply unclaimed; if your body remains at the city morgue for more than two weeks, you, too, will be sent for burial by a team of prisoners on Hart Island.
Zombie Story is an imgur album about the uncanny similarities between Pixar's Toy Story movies and AMC's zombie apocalypse interpersonal drama The Walking Dead. [more inside]
Laughing Past The Grave
We realize we aren’t supposed to speak ill of the dead, but we adore it, often to a perfectly scandalous degree, when others do, and especially when it’s funny.
On the 21st September 2013 it is International Peace Day. We are making an event called ‘The Fallen’ on the D-Day landing beach of Arromanches in northern France that illustrates what happens with the absence of peace. It was on the 6th June 1944 that a total of 9,000 civilians, German forces and Allies lost their lives. Our challenge is to represent those lives lost between the times of the tide with a stark visual representation using stencilled sand drawings of people on the beach. Each silhouette represents a life and when it is washed away its loss. There is no distinction between nationalities, they will only be known as ‘The Fallen’.
The Things They Leave Behind. "When the Vietnam Veterans Memorial opened 30 years ago, something unexpected happened: People started leaving things at the wall. One veteran has spent decades cataloging the letters, mementos, and other artifacts of loss — all 400,000 of them." (Via.) [more inside]
I understand your great grandfather was a grave robber?
My family is Greek and they lived in Alexandria back when it was a Greek town. At that point there was a trade in mummy dust, which they called mummia, which was thought to be a cure all. Louis XIV actually used to carry mummia in a pouch and snort little bits of it. The problem was that by the late 19th century they didn’t have a bunch of old Egyptian mummies to dig up anymore. Instead, when criminals were executed, people would steal their bodies and take them to the middle of the Sahara and cover them in tar. They’d come back a year later, dig them up and sell them to apothecaries, where they’d get ground up. This was a burgeoning trade.A Q&A with author, photographer, and ossuary expert Paul Koudounaris.
Larry Sloan, the ____(adjective)____ publisher of the ___(adverb)___ ___(adjective)____ "Mad Libs" died on October 18th. His family and friends described him as ____(adjective)_____, ____(adjective)_____, kind to his pet ____(animal)____, and very interested in his hobby, collecting _____(plural noun)____.
Danish author Sven Hassel (Wikipedia, official site) has passed away at the age of 95. (Danish - Translation) Hassel fought for the Germans during WWII and became famous after publishing Legion of the Damned, a semi-autobiographical account of the war. He went on to write thirteen more books following the adventures of his convict battalion, incuding Wheels of Terror which in 1987 was made into the movie The Misfit Brigade staring Bruce Davison and David Patrick Kelly (clip). He will be remembered fondly by all who browsed the bookshelves of charity shops as young men.
Are professional writers going the way of milk deliverers, shoeshiners, and chimney sweeps? “I’ve been making culture professionally for 20 years, and going back to working on spec again seems to be a very retrograde step,” Morrison says. “But it’s something a lot of established writers are having to do.” The Globe and Mail asserts that there will be no professional writers in the future.
Etta James, jazz legend best known for "At Last," died today after a bout with leukemia and dementia, while her husband and sons were battling over her savings.
Here is the Nethack server at alt.org, Telnet link, Java client, Flash client. Here is a list of most of the ways to die in the game (dates back to 3.1.3). And here are a lot of Nethack spoilers.
It has been nearly a decade since VH1 cancelled "Pop Up Video," but at noon ET today the show returns with 60 new episodes. Their first video: Britney Spears' Til the World Ends. The program's new incarnation will also allow viewers to DIY their own "pop up" videos and share them on Facebook and Twitter." [more inside]
Influential record producer Martin Rushent has passed away. He was 63. Rushent is best known for his work with the Buzzcocks, the Human League, and the Stranglers, though he worked with everyone from Altered Images to Yes. A sampling of his music follows the jump. [more inside]
Why a mobile phone ring may make bees buzz off: Insects infuriated by handset signals Signals from mobile phones could be partly to blame for the mysterious deaths of honeybees, new research shows. In the first experiment of its kind, a bee expert placed a mobile phone underneath a hive and then carefully monitored the reaction of the workers. Download the full report here: Mobile phone-induced honeybee worker piping.
Visceral Games launches a very innovative ad campaign for their upcoming game, "Dead Space 2". The second installment of the Dead Space series is set to come out January 25th of this year. In what seems to be a final ditch effort to build some last minute hype, the producers have started an interesting ad campaign. [more inside]
He's Now in the Great Screening Room in the Sky Dino de Laurentiis has passed on, aged 91. Over 150 films produced. He gave this young guy a second chance after this bomb. One of his movies had the best Haniball Lektor/Lector ever. He worked with Fellini, Pacinio, Redford, Schwarzenegger, Bridges, (Jeff), Raimi, and Fonda, (Jane). Goodnight, sweet prince of cinema.
Three time world surfing champion Andy Irons has died at age 32, apparently from dengue fever. [more inside]
A time lapse video of the immersing, beautiful world of the critically acclaimed video game Red Dead Redemption.
Dead Wrestler Of The Week. Every week, the Masked Man, Deadspin's pro wrestling correspondent, honors the sport's fallen and examines their legacies — famous and obscure alike. [more inside]
50 Impressions in Two Minutes and Classic Movie Lines (neither of which are precisely what you think), followed by acting master classes with Kevin Spacey, Ralph Fiennes, Michael Caine, Al Pacino, Robert DeNiro, and, last but certainly not least, Marlon Brando. All by Peter Serafinowicz, who you may know as Spaced's Duane Benzie or Shaun of the Dead's Pete. (Thanks, iridic!)
The great[pdf] Russian mathematican Vladimir Igorevich Arnol'd, foremost modern practitioner of classical mechanics, influential teacher, namesake of a minor planet, and semi-nude cross-country skier has died.
It sounded terribly fun and terribly disgusting at the same time: kayaking the polluted river systems of the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex.
Zsa Zsa Gabor will probably die this year. Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi will definitely die. Fidel Castro and Eli Wallach may or may not die this year. Geez, I don't want to make #1 on the Death List.
"Tennis Girl" photographer dead at 63. Photographer Martin Elliot was best known for the iconic 1976 photo "Tennis Girl". [more inside]
There ain't no room for these cheap regrets (except for when a bogan band makes your angst an anthem)
Rowland S. Howard was the guitarist for The Boys Next Door and the Birthday Party. He released his second solo cd, "Pop Crimes" in October this year, ten years after his debut solo effort. He died today.
Screenwriter Dan O'Bannon, probably best known for his work on Alien, as well numerous other science fiction films, has passed away age 63.
RIP the master maven: William Safire dead at 79 of cancer. As someone who worked with him behind the scenes to help him with research for his language columns, I'm thankful for his attempts to bring discussions of language into popular discourse, or as he called it, his work in "the language dodge." [more inside]
Every evening since July 2nd 1928*, at precisely eight o'clock, the Last Post has been played under the Menin Gate in Ieper (Ypres, "Wipers" as it was known to British tommies), Belgium. The ritual - performed by buglers from the local fire brigade - honours British and Commonwealth soldiers killed in the five battles at Ypres in the First World War. Today is the 27,888th day of the Last Post ceremony. [more inside]
Cyclone Power Technologies Inc. and Robotic Technology Inc. have sent out a press release denying that their new robot will feed on the dead. "It's a vegetarian!", they claim. Desecration of the dead is a war crime under Article 15 of the Geneva Conventions, and is certainly not something sanctioned by DARPA, Cyclone or RTI. “We completely understand the public’s concern about futuristic robots feeding on the human population, but that is not our mission,” stated Harry Schoell, Cyclone’s CEO.
Free Solo climbing - climbing without a rope, partner or protection - is clearly the most dangerous form of rock climbing. When practiced at the highest level it demands peerless physical skill and stamina and unshakable nerves. Few climbers have ever taken soloing to the extremes that John Bachar did. [more inside]
Dead people having sex Immoral? Illegal? Shocking? Gunther von Hagens latest exhibit in London is again not without controversy. His website is here