Monday, August 3, 2015

New Laptop

I spilled tea all over my laptop last week and had to purchase a new one. It is scheduled to arrive later today and will take a few days to setup, including downloading and installing software which may include Windows 10. I had just purchased that laptop about six months ago and it may still be under warranty, but I have to drop it off at a store location and cannot do so for a few days.

It's been one thing after another the past few years, largely due to the faulty wiring in my home which I cannot afford to have fixed at this time. This incident was (hopefully) a freak accident that has never happened before, but I'm not as laptop savvy as most. This was only my second laptop and the first was struck by lightning shortly after I got it, so I have yet to get used to having one around and paying attention as to where it is, and so forth.

Anyway, I wanted to let you all know the situation.

© The Weirding, 2015

Friday, July 24, 2015

Things What Done Fell from the Sky

Arctic Lamprey
Arctic Lamprey
Some Alaskans are reporting Arctic Lamprey falling from the sky near Fairbanks. At least one of the creatures was taken to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game where it was placed in an aquarium. Several were well over one-foot in length, but this is about the regular size of the Arctic Lamprey.

According to news reports, officials blame gulls. They pointed to bruising and scratches on several of the Lampreys to backup their claim. Arctic Lamprey are rather elusive and officials know little about them, generally speaking.

Image from Hatch Magazine.

© The Weirding, 2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

Admiral Byrd, the Hollow Earth Exploration and UFOs

Hollow Earth Entrance
Hollow Earth Entrance
I'm sure you have all heard some version of the "Hollow Earth Theory" and some of you may have heard of Admiral Byrd, but I am not sure that any of you know the very depths to which this whole theory goes or Byrd's direct involvement in it. I know that I have had a passing familiarity with these topics for years, but this documentary blew my ever-loving mind.

Snag Films is a great site but even better Roku station, with thousands of great films and TV shows, and I'll be bringing some other selections from them to light off and on in the future, but this particular documentary is absolutely must-see viewing for any serious Ufologist or Hollow Earth theorist.

Best of all, it's free to watch and you don't have to signup!

© The Weirding, 2015

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Shot Glasses

I live in a somewhat "dry" county - believe it or not, they still exist! We just got the "right" to purchase beer on Sundays a few years ago. In fact, I live only a few miles from the county line and they literally padlock the doors to the beer cooler after midnight and on Sundays. If you think that is weird, imagine how I felt the first time I saw it! Anyway, while beer is sold, liquor stores are not allowed. You have to drive 30 miles in either direction to get liquor, and I overwhelmingly prefer liquor to beer.

I also prefer to drink my liquor in shot glasses. I like mixed drinks just fine, depending on what I am drinking, but when it comes to getting hammered, I like to measure my drinking and chase my shots. In my younger days, we used to have shots with our rounds of beer at bars. There are plenty of bars here, but none serve liquor.

I know a lot of people like to collect shot glasses, and now you can get engraved glassware from Glass with a Twist - shot glasses with your own design and text.If you have ever caught our show, you know we like to play drinking games as well, and shot glasses are great for those! In fact, we may just have to get some personalized shot glasses just for such occasions...


Connectivity Issues

My internet connection has been total shit the last couple of months. I think it's because of the kids being out of school (system overload) but I don't know that for sure. In fact, I just got the message that auto-saving of this post failed! My Roku keeps freezing - usually several times a day.

We had some stormy weather around the holiday but it's been relatively calm otherwise. I know that there have been a lot of storms nationwide, but I don't think that has much to do with it. I also read that Comcast subscribers had sporadic outages on the West Coast a month or so back, but I'm not on Comcast. Again, no clue as to whether or not these things are related.

Anyway, we're taking a break until August but I have a few posts along the way to keep it steady. Hope everyone's staying cool and enjoying the summer!

© The Weirding, 2015

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Computer Desk Broke

My one and only computer desk broke a while back. The partition you pull out from the desk and set your keyboard on just fell onto my feet! Had I not been sitting the way I was, it might have broken something... luckily, I was fine.

Apparently, some screws or something are missing, and it just fell off these heavy duty drawer slides that held it up. It's many years old, so I ordered a new one but it has yet to arrive. I got one a while back but it was subpar and didn't even come with all the parts. After trying to set it up for about a week, I had to send it back. Money's been really tight lately, so I'm doing what I can.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Accuracy and Veracity

For what it's worth, we strive to make a distinction between "real" (hard, or solid) evidence and hoaxes, mistakes, and the like. However, we are not accredited scientists, we do not have physical access to any of this "evidence," nor can we speak directly to any eyewitnesses. While we have shared a handful of stories from others that we picked up along the way, as well as personal accounts, that's as close as we can get. In a very real manner, we are yet another spoke on that incestuous wheel, quoting and sharing stories from other published accounts.

All we can do is follow proper procedure, which means finding a second source to "confirm" the first one. The problem is that, in this never-ending echo chamber, many of those sources got their information from the same place. It's a problem and we understand it, there simply is nothing we can do about it.

So please do not dismiss us as hogwash just because we publish a story that later turns out not to be true. We do our best to distinguish between real and false stories but we are at a definite disadvantage. Mostly, we share stories that interest us and we hope you will find interesting, even if they are not entirely truthful. We also do our best to weed-out the latter or at least admit when we are uncertain of the veracity of a story or claim.

Sometimes, our posts are purely speculative - as is a lot of "paranormal research" - and shared simply because we enjoy this field and that kind of thinking. Again, it is only speculative and not meant to be taken at face value.

© The Weirding, 2015

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A Brief History of Witch-Hunting

The Ordeal of Iron
The Ordeal of Iron
As early as the 12th-Century, division was made between magic used for good and maleficia, as practiced by witches and sorcerers. Even under Alfonso the Wise (ca. 1275), any person could accuse another of sorcery before a judge and if that party be found guilty, the sentence was death. It was not for a few more centuries that this would erupt into a national fervor, attributed largely to influential clergymen who insisted the guilty be burned in fiery rhetoric and widely-distributed texts such as the Malleus Maleficarum.

Maleficia refers specifically to the Dark Arts - the diabolical and malignant. While the popular modern notion associates witchcraft with spellcasting, amulets, potions, and poisons were witches' stock-in-trade. The mythology that emerged surrounding witches included the ability to fly, enter homes, shapeshift, and kidnap children. This stereotype may have been holdovers of the Grecian Strigae and other mythical figures.

While there were prior Inquisitions, none were as wide-reaching as the Spanish Inquisition of the late Middle Ages. While it is true that many died during this turbulent period, mostly innocents, reliable sources are sparse - there is a reason it is known as the Dark Ages. The accused were predominantly women attributed abilities such as causing disease, interfering in married couples' relationships, and damaging crops or livestock. Many sources suggest a conspiracy amongst the medical community of the time to uproot midwifery but while this may be generally true, it is hardly the whole story. The average layperson believed in magic being used for both beneficial and maleficient purposes; it was amongst the Ecclesiastical elite that all sorcery was considered diabolical and it was they who called for the deaths of those found guilty of such crimes.

Trials by Ordeal were severe and involved some form of torture, such as The Ordeal of Iron, during which the accused was forced to hold red-hot irons while onlookers assessed the severity of the wounds.The most common in America was the Trial by Water, in which the accused was bound and dunked in a body of water. Important to note that, in many places, if a person was found guilty, her possessions were divided amongst her lord and her accuser - so there is no doubt that some of these accusations were financially-motivated.

Witches came to be thought of as a sect - an organized community directly opposing Christianity which gathered by night to worship the Devil. Pope [antipope] Alexander V condemned them as a secret organization which "perverted Christendom" in his 1409 Papal Bull. There had been at least one trial of a witch in the late 14th-Century but the craze really took off in the 15th-Century.

© The Weirding, 2015

A Series of Loud Booms and a Whistle

Musical instruments are extremely expensive but if you think you are going to get away with spending less on a school-sponsored program, anyone can burst your little bubble in a moment. Excepting Grand Pianos and other big-ticket items, such as tubas and Bass clarinets, are amongst the most expensive, and most challenging, field instruments to play. And buying a single instrument is never where it ens - there are costumes, drycleaning, replacement parts, and oh so much more!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

A Cover-Up

I am a sucker for antiques - and tablecloths. I have had a lot of antiques in my day, many of which were hand-me-downs that looked about like you would expect: replete with dings, scratches, gashes, and flimsy and rotting pieces. However, they were definitely better-crafted and are likely to outlast even me (albeit with a few more dings and scratches).

The greatest thing about them is that simple and inexpensive, wholesale tablecloths and slipcovers work wonders, regardless of the shape the furniture is in.Sometimes a simple sheet can do the trick but it is only a workaround; these things are the real deal and can help make a solid impression in any home.