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Category Archives: Cutting up didos with cadavers

Okay, so I’ve roughed out a provisional draft of alternate lyrics to “My Favorite Things” for our own Jackie of Finland to record, per our contractually-binding exchange in this comment thread. I’m also in negotiations to get the two surviving Seidlitz Brothers to dub some backing vocals, though according to their agent, Shlomo’s voice box is pretty much shot from three packs of Chesterfields a day since the McKinley administration. No matter: that’s why God made Pro Tools and the electrolarynx.

I’m kind of going back and forth on the first verse here, as it lacks the 100% concrete historicity that the other verses have. Though maybe I could fix that by nailing down concrete references to back it all up.

Barrel-clad hobos and window-ledge pastries
Irish patrolman and drunks with the DTs
Blackguards and maidens and oncoming trains
These are a few of my favorite thangs

Phials of acid in ex-lovers’ faces
Naked wild women in desolate places
Negroes with blue gums who kill when they bite
This is a load of my favorite shite

Mince pies for breakfast, and luncheon, and dinner
Corpses injected to make their eyes glimmer
Med school students defiling the dead
This sort of thing tends to fuck with my head

Cuckqueaned wives killing spinster cult leaders
Cats sold as rabbits to unwitting eaters
Show-offs igniting their cee-gars with bills
These are symptoms of society’s ills

When the dog brings
Dynamite back

When I’m feeling sad
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I feel truly bad

Jackie: Far be it from me to impinge on your creative process, but I was thinking this would work best Lento assai and in a minor key.

mageeThe [Boston] Liberator, August 13, 1858. Here’s the Magee case that inspired this previous item. Read More »

lowell daily cit and news july 28 1858 2Lowell Citizen and Daily News, July 28, 1858. Dunno who this Magee character was but will attempt to find out. I wouldn’t bet the rent on the truth value of this anecdote, but it’s a fine story.

10 24 65New York Times, October 24, 1865. I’m thinking Patrolman Coughlin just might have taken a peek into said box before complying with said rule. Anyway, medical students once again furnish the cops with a handy alibi for a tough and ugly case. Not that anybody lost much sleep over the murder of neonates at this time. As we’ve seen, there was an entire industry built around the quiet disposal of unwanted babies.

wapo april 9 1907Washington Post, April 9, 1907. Okay, it seems like I was maybe jumping to conclusions about the sinister vampiric agenda of Dr. Icard. Detection of suspended animation and prevention of premature burial seem to have been sincere and lifelong obsessions chez lui. One wonders why, if this test worked so perfectly, he had to go and develop his second method. Read More »

flourescineThe New York Times, September 14, 1914. Lemme get this straight: Upon the injection of this Lovecraftian substance into a freshly dead person, his or her eyes turn into “superb emeralds, set like jewels in their sockets,” and then it turns out no funeral is necessary after all. Could this “Icard” (transparent anagram for “I, Drac”) be any more brazen in his campaign to take over Marseilles with his private army of the undead?

Still, it would all make a great ad for the glossies. You’ve got this Lionel Atwill-type in a white lab coat brandishing a big hypodermic, see? He’s shooting the goo into the pallid arm of a young lovely whose charms are barely covered by her winding sheet. Her wide-open eyes are superb green emeralds, and nicely set off by the stainless steel mortuary table upon which she reposes, whose outline is isometric to the fireplug shape of the bottle containing your client’s naphtha-like beverage.

snatchingChicago Tribune, June 23, 1878. Could be this interview is vaguely on the level, could be it’s a total put-on. It’s worth noting that “cunny” was then a well-known term for ye nether lady-parts of the fairer sex at a time when the general vocabulary lacked polite equivalents. It’s a noun now generally forgotten except by attentive followers of HBO’s Deadwood. Anyway, the ensuing description of the mechanics of body-snatching has an impressive verisimilitude. Read More »

liverAssociated Press, January 9, 1878. No idea whether these reports of the liver-eater’s demise were premature, though a guy named Liver Eating Johnson surely has got to go sometime . Anyway, this one was the inspiration for a hokey ’70s eco-Western starring Robert Redford, but the entire liver-eating angle somehow got lost along the way. Time for a remake, I think. Casey Affleck looks like he might eat your liver.

2 cratesLos Angeles Times, November 7, 1901. Weird stuff tends to happen once you assign a cash value to dead people. And this is far from the worst of it. Read More »

aug 3 13 defenderChicago Defender, August 13, 1913. Okay , I’ve changed my funeral plans again: Rather than being freeze-dried and ground into crystals, I fain would be rendered transparent.