For years I had what I thought was an original idea. I was going to watch a different horror movie every day of October. It turns out my idea is not all that original. 

According to friends at work, Instagram, and fans of our show, Scary Thoughts, this has been a thing for some time. I am stoked on this news. 

There are tons of lists out there. I just plan on watching whatever I happen to feel like in the evening. On days I do t have much time for a full movie, I’m going to try watching horror shorts. Although, I expect most nights I’ll be able to watch something. 

I’m going to kick things off tomorrow by watching The Neon Demon again because I need to make some notes for the next show. I’m running a half marathon on Sunday, so I may watch a couple movies while I recover. 

Anyway. This is fun. If you’re into horror movies you should go for it too. 


I’m really surprised The Neon Demon didn’t get better reviews. The story is cool. The actresses are beautiful. The visuals are striking. And the soundtrack is, in my opinion, the best of the new synth horror musical efforts. 

I kept waiting for it to become a full on horror movie, but it basically stayed in the psych/thriller lane. Nothing overtly supernatural happens, yet there is a strangeness to the universe the characters inhabit that could be darkly magical. 

I’m not sure if these new school horror movies are in a genre with a name, but I’ve been calling them Synth Horror. Movies like It Follows and The Neon Demon seem to have a few commonalities: ethereal lead actresses, cool electro soundtracks, overt symmetry, obfuscated temporality, auteur directors, tighter budgets.  

It seems like gore fans and classic horror loyalists aren’t quite as into them as they are the slightly passé French Extremity films. Maybe it’s because they lean so heavily on music video sensibilities and millenial malaise. 

Anyway, I really loved The Neon Demon, but don’t come crying to me of you watch it and aren’t into it. It’s an odd one.  

godzillaghidorah

As I predicted, whoever you thought was going to win the debate is who you thought won the debate. I’m a selfish savage and hate all that the two parties represent. Even their legit achievements don’t diminish my apathetic sneering. And now Gary Johnson is on my shit list, so I am officially without a candidate. Yes, I’m that guy.

I hear your stupid objections. Anything but a vote for Hillary is an affirmation of the birther apocalypse. The Klan robe wearing comet headed to destroy all life on our little spinning hunk of dirt can only be stopped by lining up for the great pantsuited gorgon and praying to the dark gods who’s worshippers feed upon her noxious droppings.

And now the Trumpkins. To let Hillary win will issue in an era where church will be replaced by mandatory Black Lives Matter protests. We will have to destroy our guns as quickly as Hillary destroyed her emails, which were no doubt hiding the Sasquatch pedophile ring her husband started with Ted Kennedy.

All of you sound dumber than that.

Look, the oligarchs of this world like things the way they are way too much for any real change to happen. Sure, you might get to rearrange the chairs a bit, but this fetid ship will sail onward to ever increasing mediocrity no matter what soulless cretin is at the wheel. The currents are too strong. The gods hate us too much. And you know what? Hot water comes out of faucets, toilets flush, and they keep making superhero movies. Life is fairly tolerable for most of us.

These debates went exactly how I thought they might. You could make a case the moderator showed bias for Clinton. He didn’t ask her about anything about Benghazi or the Clinton Foundation but so the fuck what? Trump should have known that and prepared for it. He literally could’ve gone on the pro-Trump Reddit page and memorized the top 20 burns and completely savaged Clinton. Why not hire people like Ben Shapiro and Milo to work on better lines to roast her?

Clinton’s questions may have been softer, but her answers weren’t. She was in control for most of the debate and the lies she told were harder to detect than the pants on fire level fabrications spewed from Trump’s face-anus.

Trump came out mostly strong in the first 20 or so minutes of the debate. Clinton’s support for the TPP is an issue and since the public (and her campaign when it’s convenient for them) links her to her husband’s programs, she is sort of on the hook for NAFTA.

The “Trumped up trickle down” line she kept repeating is corny as hell. Her meme magic skills are zero. But, once Clinton started hitting Trump on his taxes, she started to win. He got defensive and he ate a fiery bowl of cocks because his ego craved the taste of charred dong. As soon as she said the thing about how he pays no taxes, he should’ve gone full Tony Robbins and said something like:

“Yeah I barely pay taxes. I only get to do that because I can afford great lawyers and accountants. I want the middle class to experience the same. Because of that I’m able to live how I want and start more business that create jobs and share the wealth. This helps communities and makes every one better off. I want everyone to have my success. If you have your own money, you won’t have to use Clinton’s Marxist scheme to take it from others.”

But he didn’t because he’s a buffoon.

Trump didn’t really go in too hard on the emails, but that shit is a dead end anyway. Most people don’t understand what happened and the people who do, know that she will never be held accountable. The only way this will be an issue is if Wikileaks has some insane shit to release. Waiting for that is like waiting for a streaker to run out and stop a game winning touchdown with under a minute on the clock in the Superbowl. It could happen, but don’t count on it.

Famous Republican hand job giving pollster Frank Luntz (who’s book about manipulating people I quite like) ran a focus group right after the debate. It affirmed everything I thought: it was as if people were watching different debates. Trump people thought he put his nuts on her chin. Clinton people thought she served him a hot plate of turds. Bernie people just repacked the bowl in their bongs and re-watched YouTube documentaries “debunking” the lunar landing.

What a time to be alive.

 

old

As I type this, the first 2016 Presidential debates between Clinton and Trump have not happened. But they will be the worst. We have two wildly unpopular candidates who represent everything we hate about the powerful.

No minds will be changed tonight. The only people who benefit will be the TV stations that sell ads. Tomorrow Huff Post and Breitbart will write articles that sound as if they were watching two completely different debates.

Trump has almost nothing to lose. All he needs to do is keep hammering on anything that makes people uneasy about Clinton (emails, health, Benghazi) and stay away from saying anything too incorrect. He can be as divisive as he wants to be at this stage. His game is to make more of his base show up, and for that all he needs is the red meat of nationalism.

The media has been so hyperbolic in its objections to Trump that I don’t think there’s much left for Clinton to attack that will raise any pulses. Huff Po has been running a paragraph under every article about him saying “Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liarrampant xenophoberacistmisogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.”

I agree with some of the pundits who think this constant barrage has inoculated Trump to certain attacks. He’s basically tied in the polls even with almost all of mainstream media and social media outlets against him. What else can be said about him?

The only thing I think will allow Clinton a clear victory in tonight’s debate is if the moderator really drills into policy specific questions. I might not like what her plans are (because freedom), but I believe she is well informed and has a plan. I don’t know what Trump’s plans are. All the shit people freak out about is so extreme it’s never going to be a issue anyway.

Candidates should have to take a very serious LSAT/MCAT/GRE style test before even being nominated. If you don’t know what Aleppo is or you can’t name all fifty capitals, GTFO. And for the debates, it should work like Oxford style debates: the audience votes for or against at the beginning and then again at the end. Whoever has the majority at the end wins. Bragging rights go to any candidate that gets a big changeover.

 

 

dustin

The advice column was originally thought up because I was concerned I wouldn’t have enough content for the whole week. I imagined after a certain amount of time, the column would be popular enough to generate enough questions each week. I was wrong.

This week I got one question from my buddy Aaron. Now, usually I throw up a reminder for questions, but this week I wanted to do a little bit of an experiment and see if any would come without a prompt. Lesson learned. Always prompt.

I also didn’t realize how much of a resurgence in popularity the advice column genre has had. There’s the classics like Dan Savages’s and Cheryl Strayed’s; there’s also new winners like Andrew W.K.’s. They’re all really good and full of actually good advice. The schtick with my column is I probably shouldn’t be giving out any sort of advice. The only thing I’ve ever really done successfully over time is stay married and graduate college without paying for it. I’m definitely an authority on those subjects.

Should I carry on with this nonsense? I don’t really know. I have enough to bang something out on Kindle (that was the plan) and it really is just a bonus for the 365 day challenge. Anyway. Here’s the one question. Enjoy.

In Stranger Things, Dustin is wearing a Waupaca, WI shirt in one of the episodes. My hometown, Waupaca, is also home to the house that inspired the Bates Hotel. Robert Bloch, the writer of the original Psycho book, lived in the next town over. He was walking through Waupaca and saw this house, and that’s how it all started. I don’t watch the show, so I don’t know if there is any meaning – or if the showrunners have any idea of the connection. But…seems random enough that it could be purposeful. What do you think? 

I think that every single thing in this show is designed to reference something. It’s balls out nostalgia turned up to 11. I was unable to find any sort of evidence to support it, but this is an interesting observation and completely reflective of a major pleasure of the show: spotting genre Easter Eggs.

It’s been interesting to see how much of a splash this show has made on pop culture. Every time I turn around, the kids are on some TV show or red carpet event. They seem like pals and that’s definitely cool.

camacho

If you type the words “Clinton Trump Poll” into any search engine you’ll get a very confusing set of links. Some have Clinton up by +6 and others have Trump with a landslide. You’ll find statisticians with perfect prediction records ready to put money on either to win.

There are dozens of methodologies employed to calculate the raw data, and an enormous amount of partisanship employed to decipher it. Do you add in the third parties? How were the questions asked? How do these numbers affect public perception? Is the media juking the stats? Is voting even real?

The BREXIT vote should be giving a lot of Clinton supporters heart palpitations. It wasn’t set to pass on most of the mainstream polls. It won. So what’s going on there and what does it say about Trump?

Here’s my theory: there really isn’t much social backlash for supporting Hillary. I guess if you had an “I’m with Her” sticker on your car deep in a poor neighborhood in a red state, you might catch some heat, but most likely not.  Even if you aren’t into Hillary Clinton, you can still vocalize support for her without too much social grief. If you say you’re voting for Trump, it’s a whole different story.

I don’t know any secret Hillary voters, but I do know a few people down-low for Trump.

I think a lot of people who would vote Trump are unwilling to answer that way on polls because of social disapproval. So when I see Clinton up anything less than 10 points, I start to wonder, how big is the Trump iceberg? Is it enough to sink what should be an unsinkable candidate?