Sunday, December 30, 2012

Commemorative BSOH Coin

Hey, look what I got for Christmas from Gunther Demond himself! It's a commemorative Basement Sublet of Horror coin!
 And on the reverse, it's got the BSOH logo!
I don't know how you can get one of these, sadly, unless you know Gunther personally. I hope they make one for Tex LeBeauf next!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Buffalo Remains and the Saddest Piñata in the World

I've been very aware that my taxidermy-related posts have of late been lacking. So here are two shots of a pretty moth-eaten buffalo (Bison bison, for you scientific types):
Here's a plucky-looking dog, from the same undisclosed location in Kentucky:

 And their friend, Mr. Trout:
 And, finally, the Saddest Piñata in the World:

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Because You Demanded it: Honest Abe!

I have been a very bad, backsliding blogger! To make up for this, here are two sexy pictures of Mrs. Phillips wearing an Abraham Lincoln plastic mask in Kentucky:
The bustiest Emancipator ever!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Finally, the video....

Below is the link to the book trailer for Nocturne le vendredi, which came out November 2 in France. There will be an English version before the book comes out in the US next June. Ideally I will have  rerecorded the voice-over as I did a poor job the first time; this is all the more frustrating because Lane Davies, doing the voice of the psychopathic actor, gives a great performance.

The whole thing was edited by Jenna Marguerita, who also produced and co-directed the scenes with the actors, ably assisted by a group of students from the film department at Webster University. Thanks to them and to Jenna's company, Bitdepth Productions LLC.

(p.s.: Click the link above, not the pic below.)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Gods Hate Kansas!

 My friend Lisa,also known as Ms. A, sent me a book this week I've known only from its cover being used as a snarky post card.

The description sounds like something by my friend and protegé Troy Cutcross:
 The Astrophysicist's enslaved Girl Friend ! Temple gasped aloud! Whither Joseph Millard?
I have to say I really love the fact that some long-ago owner of this copy (presumably not Lisa) used the cover to practice his or her paper punching skills.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Hatch Show Print in Nashville

Here's the great old neon sign for Hatch Show Print, the legendary letterpress plant:

It's on Broadway in Nashville TN and is famous for having made posters for country music shows, all kinds of stage productions from vaudeville to opera, all with a remarkable flair for snappy design that's always professional but never slick. Here's the showroom:
  Click to enlarge! You'll be glad you did. These small posters are all for sale at quite reasonable prices, and they sell t-shirts too. The people who work there are very friendly (at least the ones who were there the day I went), just make sure you don't let the store cats out when you walk in. Look online at

Thursday, October 18, 2012

New Book! And Trailer!

My newest book comes out in France today:
That's my eye on the cover, taken right in my publishers' office. It's part of a series of thirteen novels, all set in Paris and all taking place in part on Friday the 13th. (Nothing to do with the series of horror movies of the same name, although my friend Scott Phillips of New Mexico wrote a Jason tie-in novel a few years back, so this is really going to confuse the shit out of people.)

Three of the novels are already being turned into TV movies, and I'm hoping this will be the fourth. It's loosely based on a period in the early nineties when my friend Lane Davies and I were running around Paris trying to raise money for a movie. Lane was the star of a soap opera, "Santa Barbara," that was broadcast with great success during prime time in France, and was such a celebrity there that we were certain we could get this thing made. We didn't but hijinks ensued and when les Éditions la Branche asked me to write something for the series I asked Lane if he'd object to me depicting him as a murdering psychopath (in the novel, things go slightly more haywire than they did in real life).

Hell, no, I don't mind, he replied, can I play myself in the TV movie?

We just got done shooting a book trailer and are just starting to edit. Here's a shot of one of the sets, showing tireless cinematographer/editor Jenna Marguerita with indefatiguable grips Tony and Nathan, and seated at the bar, Anita Romero, playing Esmée, the femme fatale:
And here's the lovely Anita in character:
The book will be out in July of 2013 from Counterpoint Books under the title "RAKE," with one of the best covers I've ever had. Until then, you can get the French version here:

Monday, October 15, 2012

Noir at the Bar 2--the Anthology!

There's a trailer for the second Noir at the Bar anthology, edited by Jedidiah Ayres and, nominally, by me. Featuring a whole bunch of terrific writers and filthy stories!

Unfortunately Blogspot won't let me upload the video itself for reasons I don't quite understand. The music is by Modern Silent Cinema, also known as Cullen Gallagher! Here's the cover by Erik Lundy:
And it's available at Subterranean Books at 6275Delmar in St. Louis MO, or from the link below:

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Fire Eater

This guy was a regular fixture around the Centre Pompidou in the eighties and early nineties. He was a fire eater, and he also had a repulsive specialty: he could suck his abdominal organs upward until you could damn near see his spine sticking through the skin of his belly (no, I didn't get a picture.) He was French and I believe he'd been a paratrooper (note the tattoo on his biceps) and he was quite gracious about having his picture taken.
This was originally half of a stereograph pair. Until I started cleaning the dust off of this negative digitally I hadn't ever noticed the burn scars on his arms, back and sides.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

A WHATload?

My friend Jedidiah "Noir Bar" Ayres has just released a very dirty book of short stories entitled A Fuckload of Shorts, or to please the prudes who police American bookstore shelves looking for msut and foul language, A F*ckload of Shorts.
There's necrophilia and murder and all kinds of wrong types of intercourse, social and sexual, in this here collection, for which I penned a rather excellent introduction. Two of the stories have been adapted into films, including "Viscosity" and "A Fuckload of Scotch Tape," which is every bit as brilliant as its title, which is my favorite short story title ever. You can get the book here:

If you don't buy it, you won't be "In the Know" like the cool kids on the playground who smoke and swear!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

My Old Writing Space

In the interests of posting random and uninteresting pieces of my past, here is the door of the tiny squalid fetid cramped dusty room I used to rent on the rue Yves Toudic in the 10th arrondissement in Paris for 500ff per month, about $100 at the time:
My next door neighbors were an elderly woman and her middle-aged daughter, who always smiled sweetly in the stairwell but who shrieked the vilest of obscenities at one another inside their apartment. They ended up in a novel and a short story both, as did the junkie who used to leave his works in the communal toilet down the hall. In the lower right hand corner you can see part of my porno trunk, a "must" for a young lusty bachelor!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Taxidermied Sewer Rats, Twenty-five Years On

 Here's what the Arouze Pest Control company in Paris looks like today.....
 And here it is around 1985. As you can see the muskrats at the bottom of the display have been moved over to the other side, and the hanging sewer rats raised.
And here's a closeup of the right side:

Sunday, October 7, 2012

More of Cape Girardeau

 Coca-Cola Ghost Sign!
 Stag Beer Ghost Sign!
 Spooky Abandoned Restaurant! Inside and Out!
 And finally, the Cape Wiggery Shop, sadly defunct but with its sign intact.

Saturday, October 6, 2012


In the late fifties, "Confidential" was the magazine that named the names and dished the dirt. I'd read a book about the magazine's tumultuous legal history (they got sued a lot) but I'd never seen a copy.
 That's Lana Turner on the bottom!
 Look! Edward R. Murrow had a missing tooth! And there's another one of Liz Taylor's husbands!
Queer Shenanigans! Reducing Pills! Louella Parsons! Man. Those were the days.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Ernest Tubbs's Record Shop, Nashville

 Ernest Tubb had a record shop on Broadway in Nashville Tennessee. It's still there! Here are some clothes that belonged to Ernest and his singing pals:
 Pete Drake's amplifier! And a Nudie Suit belonging to Texas Troubador (Ernest's band) Jack Drake!
Holy Moley! Pete Drake's talking steel guitar itself!
Dig the standup cutout of Marty Stuart, rocking his own Nudie Jacket and holey blue jeans! Lots of memorabilia and a great selection of CDs. I got a Connie Smith, a Rockabilly compilation with lots of great obscure tracks and--are you ready for this? A Stringbean CD. When in Nashville, go check it out and buy some music.

Sunday, September 30, 2012


 Smallmouth Bass, Cape Girardeau, MO.
 Fox, Cape Girardeau, MO.
Longhorn, Taylor, MS, where I had a terrific dinner of blackened catfish, hushpuppies, fried okra and beer drunk from plastic cups snuck in from the parking lot because it was Sunday. Thanks Jack, Theresa, Chris and Melissa!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Human Remains for Sale, Paris, 1985

I'll bet that headline is going to get me some interesting Google searches. This skeletal hand and its companion foot were on sale at a bookstall on the Left Bank of the Seine in that halcyon summer of 1985:
Sorry I've been backsliding this week! I've been busy scanning and cleaning up old negatives like this one. Tomorrow I head for Oxford, Mississippi to talk to my friend Jack Pendarvis's class about Wichita in the 1940s, thence to Atlanta, Georgia to record some video with my friend Lane Davies, thence to Columbia, Tennessee to see my cousin Lindsey Page and then to Nashville to visit Roy Acuff's Record Store! So believe you me I will have lots to blog about.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Slightly Naughty Stereo View

From 1897:

Oh, Stop! he says, but don't you believe him. This young temptress is determined to make the elderly bald gent yield his honor, and I believe he will!

That's all I got today.

Friday, September 21, 2012

AWOL Russian Soldier in Budapest, 1990

In 1990 I went with my friends Mike Gebert and Susan Snyder to Budapest. A large number of Russian soldiers were still there, just because of the logistical difficulties involved in repatriating so many troops from so many different countries all at once. We met this guy on a pedestrian bridge selling Russian army insignias, pins and caps:
I don't know for a fact that he was AWOL but the hair and chin fur suggest he's been spared a military grooming for a while. No idea what happened to the medallion I bought.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

More Conundrum Enigma!

Here's another section from my friend and protegé Troy Cutcross's Masterpiece of Modern Suspense, The Conundrum Enigma, a Colonel Charlie "Doughnuts" Duncan Sexy Thriller by Troy Cutcross: A Novel. This is the thrilling end of Chapter Fifteen and the gripping start of Chapter Sixteen.

        Charlie had always wondered about the center of the Earth, because he had read as a little boy that it was full of molten lava that would burn you up instantly if you ever went there, just like the sun. He took that seriously, especially since a crew of his astronaut buddies had been burned to a crisp when the space agency made a terrible miscalculation about “how close was too close” on a risky solar mission to the sun a couple of years earlier. If “Doughnuts” hadn’t tranfered from the Astronaut Corps to the Agency to be a spy instead, he might have caught the miscalculation, because in addition to his other qualities he was an expert in math.
         But he had his own theories about the center of the earth, because frankly how did anyone know what was there if we’d never gone there? Just another bunch of pointy-headed scientist types sitting in their “ivory tower” and making educated guesses. Charlie’s hunch was that the earth was actually hollow, and that there was life down there. Not human life but some sort of giant insect, possibly, because insects are the only animals that live on all the continents except for birds, crabs and fish. The notion that they might have developed some sort of civilization seemed unlikely, but a hundred years ago so had the idea of radio or the internet, and two hundred years before that no one had even heard of a dumbwaiter or bifocals, which were invented by Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin!

         Charlie was listening to a tech guy explain how the machine worked that he’d be using to go down to the earth’s core. It was boring because he knew most of it already and was smarter than the guy explaining it, but he paid attention anyway, a habit he’d learned as a student at Eton, a fancy school in England where James Bond went.
         “We’ve adapted the ion technology that you developed for the spaceship and combined it with the new science we learned from the Russian’s spaceship that you so bravely commandeered, or stole,” the old technology chief said, his glasses slipping down over his egghead nose. “This will allow you to drill to the center of the earth in a relatively short time and prevent that bomb from detonating, or going off.”
         “Understood, Major Mallard,” said “Doughnuts,” because his name was Major Mallard. “Did you use the thrillium casing for the hull?”
         “Exactly!” the old codger spat, because his dentures didn’t fit exactly right and he was too busy with his experiments and such to get some new ones fitted. “Thrillium/Pentonium alloy, just as you suggested in your recent scientific paper to the International Conference of Vehicular Metalurgy!”
         It was funny but Charlie had forgotten he’d even written that paper, because so many things had happened since, and not just his makeout sessions with Tammi and Svetlana plus his temporary sex change. “I’m glad to know it served a purpose.”
         A large ribbon of snot started seeping out of the old man’s nostril, the result no doubt of a cold or some allergies, but Charlie was too respectful of his elders to laugh at it. Instead he ignored it and thought about the team they were putting together.
         “Besides myself, we’ll need someone young and plucky,” he opined thoughtfully, “someone who understands all the different layers of the earth before we get to the fiery center where Toborsky intends to plant his bomb.”
         “Yes,” replied Mallard. “Ideally a geologist, which is someone who studies that very subject. We have a very good one in the science department––Dr. Petulia Drake, Ph. D.”
         “Hold on––a lady scientist?”
         “She’s very good, ‘Doughnuts,’” countered the older man.
         “It’s not that, I’m sure she is,” because Charlie wasn’t the kind of spy who thought women were just playthings or “eye candy,” but rather competent specimens of spycraft who were every bit as capable as their man counterparts of killing with their bare hands. “It’s just––is she stacked?”
         “And how,” chuckled the Major devilishly while making the outline of a woman’s sexy body in the air with his hands in the universal man-code for “woman’s sexy body.” “Wait until you get a load of her….”
         “That’s the problem. Tammi’s out of commission, sex-wise. And I nearly got into a whole lot of trouble with Svetlana when we were in outer space. I just don’t want to get in any deeper than I already am.”
         “I’m sure she’ll be a consummate, or total, professional. Now you’ll also need a doctor along to treat the burns that come from the extreme heat of the earth’s core, and that doctor must also be a spy or else she wouldn’t have ‘clearance.’ Unfortunately for you, the only one available is also a very sexy woman.”
         Another string of snot was coming out of the Major’s other nostril and he looked so much like a walrus that this time Charlie had to laugh. Mallard was upset until Charlie explained it and then they had a good laugh.

         That night over a romantic candlelight dinner Duncan explained to Tammi that two of the crew to the center of the Earth would be sexy ladies, and she pouted but she already knew because she was the acting head of the agency and got “briefed” all the time about stuff. “Anyway this mission is super important now, because all the governments in the world today received blackmail threats from Toborsky warning them that unless they paid up the world would end.”
         “Good Lord,” Charlie said, so shocked that he blasphemed for the first time in a long time. “Why didn’t you tell me about this before?”
         She shrugged as though it wasn’t important. “I’m telling you now. Oh, there’s one more thing. He made one extra demand of the US government besides money.”
         “What’s that?”
         “He wants us to turn you over to him, unarmed!”


         Luckily for Colonel Charlie “Doughnuts” Duncan the President of the United States had rejected that as a stupid idea, although he didn’t tell the Cosmonaut that. Instead he told him he’d think about it.
         “Thank you, Mr. President,” Charlie said over the video phone on his wrist.
         “No, thank you, Colonel, for all your services to this, the greatest country in the world. We’re lucky to have a man of your caliber on our side. I recognize that, as the highest IQ ever recorded, you could have gone on and done other things, like research and the other things you do in your spare time, but you chose to devote your massive brain to national service. Did you ever hear that story about President Kennedy hosting a dinner for a bunch of smarties with Nobel Prizes and things, and he said ‘This is the greatest assembly of brain power this room has ever known, except for when Thomas Jefferson designed a time machine and had dinner with Galileo and Albert Einstein and Benjamin Franklin.’ That’s a classified story, by the way, Colonel.”
         “Call me ‘Doughnuts,’ Mr. President.”
         The President chuckled in his familiar way. “Then, ‘Doughnuts,’ you have to call me Newt.”
         “Roger, Newt, over and out,” he said, signifying that their conversation was over. He was a little misty-eyed at the great man’s refusal to sell him out to Toborsky just to save the world, but he shook it off and climbed aboard the Phantom Menace, which was named after another one of Charlie’s favorite movies. He met the rest of the crew, taking care not to look at their breasts except in the quickest and most polite manner, because he’d learned the hard way that breasts are not just playthings.
         “I’m Dr. Petulia Drake, Colonel,” the first sexy lady said, and as luck would have it the uniforms they were wearing were skintight and made of latex because of the incredible pressure underground which would put a terrible strain on ordinary clothing. She had long curly red hair and freckles and she reminded Duncan of his neighbor when he lived in a dorm in college and how she used to smile at him but he never got up the nerve to talk to her, which was funny now because he was so self-confident but since he had a girlfriend he couldn’t do anything about it.
         “And I’m Dr. Madge Trask, MD,” said the other gorgeous woman standing there in front of him. She was petite and also short, but her breasts were still large and round….and very attractive.
         “Damn it,” he cursed, though it was not his habit to do so in front of attractive ladies, or unattractive ones, for that matter, except that he had just realized something that might have jeopardized the very mission they were about to undertake! “I completely forgot to assign a Russian specialist to our crew. I could kick myself!”
         Dr. Madge Trask smiled a very sexy smile. “Don’t worry about it, tiger, I speak it like a native.”
         Charlie raised one eyebrow in a sardonic, or witty, way and delivered a witticism. “Funny, ‘Trask’ doesn’t sound like a Russian name.”
         Now Dr. Madge put her hands sexily on her hips and smirked in a seductive way. “It’s not! But I went to Junior Year abroad there. It’s not so hard, once you get the hang of that weird alphabet.”
         “All right. I’m going to settle into my cabin for a few minutes before we take off and look through my mail.” He held up the stack of missives and journals. “I just got my latest issue of ‘Gentleman,’ and there’s an article I want to read.”
         “Right,” Petulia chortled.
         “Sure,” Dr. Madge concurred. “You just read it for the articles, like everyone else!”
         He knew it was just good-natured ribbing but he had to “nip it in the bud,” or stop it right away, because he was the commander of the mission and they didn’t know him well enough to be making those kinds of friend-to-friend jokes yet.
         “As a matter of fact, ladies, I do read it for the articles. And the fiction, though I’ve no time now for short stories or such fripperies. And yes, the magazine is filled with pictures of ladies in their underpants and nothing else, but I skip right over those pictures because I have a girlfriend––one who happens to be head of this agency!”
         “We’re sorry, sir,” Dr. Madge apologized.
         “We were just trying to establish some of the camaraderie that goes so far toward establishing esprit de corps, or unit cohesion,” Petulia explained.
         “I know, girls,” Charlie said. “There’ll be time for that later, once we’ve defeated the evil Cosmonaut.”
         “Now that he’s at the center of the earth, isn’t Cosmonaut kind of the wrong nickname?” Petulia asked.
         “You’re right,” said Dr. Madge, “since it’s Russian for ‘Astronaut.’ How about ‘Comrade,’ which is Russian for ‘Fellow Communist?’ Or just ‘Ivan,’ which is Russian for ‘John’?”

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Perversion for Profit

While looking for public domain educational and propaganda footage for the book trailer for the second Noir at the Bar anthology (coming soon!) I discovered this gem in the Internet Archive. It's from the Prelinger Archives, and it was produced circa 1965 by, among others, Charles Keating, later a United States senator ruined by the Keating Five scandal. Back then he was an anti-porn crusader (he's a character in Milos Forman's "The People vs. Larry Flynt) and his Citizens for Decent Literature, Inc. made this sweet little picture. It's full of images of the smut it claims to vilify, and much of it is kinky stuff you'd have to have hunted pretty hard for in the sixties. The amzaingly great narrator is George Putnam, in a highly aroused state of high dudgeon.  (Click on the link, not the pic.)
You're welcome.

Friday, September 14, 2012


I found my old B. Dalton Bookseller nametag in a box of old slides I've been scanning:
This provoked a very vivid B. Dalton dream last night. In the same box, three photo booth pictures from around 1982, smack dab in the middle of the B. Dalton years:

In the top one I'm doing my Stan Laurel face. I also had Stan Laurel hair. I was very, very young. And callow!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Two-Dimensional Celebrities

 More treasures from the Pink Elephant! Above, the King. Below, Cher, even more weathered than the real one.
The elephant has been repainted since this pic was taken. That is all.