Sunday, January 28, 2018


WINCHESTER MYSTERY HOUSE - Sarah Winchester left behind a seven story mansion known as the Winchester Mystery House.  It’s now in the middle of San Jose, what was once Santa Clara valley orchard farmland.  In 1884 she began with a nearly unlimited renovation budget paid for by the several millions left behind by her late husband.  William Winchester was the heir to the estate of the famous Winchester repeating rifle.  Based on the consultation of a spiritualist, Sarah lived in the midst of nearly forty years of construction.  In her community she endured public scrutiny, engaged in bizarre behavior and believed in occult reasons for her bad luck.  She was convinced her torment was caused by the influence of spirits of the dead; due to their deaths caused by Winchester’s rifles.  The pictures and description don’t do the house justice, the scale is overwhelming and the house is something to see firsthand.  It’s the ultimate Halloween haunted house!  

Sunday, January 14, 2018


Europa Clipper - Europa is an icy moon that orbits Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system. The Galileo space probe confirmed the moon has a thin atmosphere, is covered by thick ice and flexes tidally. The surface is covered with reddish-brown hatch marks, possibly left behind by irradiated salt water deposits. The Hubble telescope found water vapor shooting sixty miles in height, prompting the theory of a subsurface ocean on this strange world. The USA has planned a new mission of discovery, the Europa Clipper, named for high seas ship voyages in the not so distant past. For the first time, a space probe might discover life outside Earth. Still in the planning stages, the radiation-tolerant spacecraft will use Jupiter’s gravity to slingshot by the moon, 45 revolutions within 16 miles of the surface. Passing through the water above the surface will allow analysis of the chemical makeup but avoids the need to drill through ice layers. NASA is sending instruments aboard including cameras, spectrometers, radar, magnetometer, thermometer and instruments to detect atmospheric water and particles. Every great story starts the same way. What if? Could unimaginable creatures inhabit this familiar yet so alien underwater world? Truly, this is a new age of exploration. 

Sunday, January 7, 2018


HP LOVECRAFT - HP (Howard Phillips) Lovecraft was born to a lunatic father and fragile mother in Providence RI where many of his tales are set. His grandfather, a successful businessman, died. Resulting in the family losing their prestigious home. Meanwhile Lovecraft himself had a nervous breakdown but was also cursed with poor physical health. Both circumstances led to his failure to obtain a high school diploma, leaving Brown no longer an option. He toyed with amateur journalism and published his first short story, The Alchemist, in 1916. His mother became institutionalized, confined to the same mental hospital as his father, HPL was desperate.  Lovecraft married and shortly thereafter his wife lost her business. He lived in Brooklyn NY but was robbed and returned to Providence. Lacking conventional skills, his job prospects diminished, and he struggled to make it as a working writer. The period from 1919 to 1920, Lovecraft's Dream Cycle, inspired such works as The White Ship, The Cats of Ulthar, Nyarlathotep and The Nameless City. The first story in the Cthulhu Mythos. He placed short stories in pulps, like Weird Tales almost exclusively, in the Twenties and Thirties. He declined Weird Tales’s offer of an editor position. He was fully capable of writing commercially viable stories (The Dunwich Horror) which the Weird Tales editor wanted but pursued work he couldn’t sell for profit. He left some unsubmitted (The Shadow Over Innsmouth), didn’t respond to a novel query simply because his notes weren’t typed up into submission format (The Case of Charles Dexter Ward) and other bungled efforts. Long separated, he agreed to divorce with his wife, but when he said he signed the decree, he actually had not. His inheritance dwindled until he was nearly broke so he wouldn’t eat to continue sending letters. Cancer and chronic pain plagued him until his death in 1937, killed by poverty at the very young age of 46. His work is rooted in the themes of science, the occult, decayed antiques, gothic architecture, churches and graveyards, Anglophilia, gods and monsters. His posthumous collections became best sellers but his writing was virtually unknown in his lifetime.

Thursday, January 4, 2018


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Monday, January 1, 2018


HORROR 2018 - Here’s my short list of (potentially good) films for this year along with a couple years of recap. There are still a lot of remakes but Hollywood seems to be taking more risks on horror recently.

Insidious The Last Key - January 4

Day of the Dead Bloodline - January 5

Winchester - February 2

The Strangers Prey at Night - March 9

A Quiet Place - April 6

The School - April 13

Predator - August 3

The Meg - August 18

Halloween - October 18