Cthulhu and me. And you!

from here.

And if, for some reason, Cthulhu isn’t doing it for you today, there’s always this:

via the always always always interesting Molly Crabapple, but look also here and perhaps maybe here, if you’re into that kind of thing. And let’s face it: you probably are, right?

Edited to add:

ALSO! Up next: Post #500! It’s been that many, can you believe it? Shocking, right? For that very special post we have something planned that may be very interesting. Or, it may suck hard. Either way… stay tuned! Until then, here’s a picture of Sarah Palin visiting herself from the future:

The Nightmare Child.

The following is an excerpt from an actual conversation between Conrad Noir and Marco Sparks last night. Yes, this is what they’re really like…

Marco Sparks: So, you’ll never believe this dream I had the other night…

Conrad Noir: I don’t know if I’m really up for a conversation about your hopes and dreams, man.

Marco: Well, when I say “dream,” what I really mean is sweaty, dread-dripping nightmare.

Conrad: Oh yeah? Shit. Nevermind. You know I’m all ears for that. Shoot.

Marco: Well, I’ll tell you about the nightmare in a second, but first let me tell you about my Saturday night…

Conrad: Always a catch, isn’t there? Shit. Okay, tell me about your Saturday ni-

Marco: It was awesome. But then, later on, I was just trying to go sleep, right? And it’s late, I don’t remember the time, but late. So I turn on the TV and put it on mute, just wanting some flickering light and alpha wave manipulation in the room. Or something.

Conrad: Sure, sure. Perfectly normal.

Marco: So then I lay down on the bed. The room I’m in though, there’s no remote. Or, if there is, fuck if I know where it is.

Conrad: Oh, yeah, man’s constant struggle.

Marco: Right, so I’m stuck with whatever the channel is because, well, I’m lazy.

Conrad: I feel that.

Marco: In this particular case, it was A&E. The former Arts & Entertainment channel.

Conrad: “Former” being the operative word.

Marco: Seriously. Airing that late evening/early morning was a seeming non stop marathon of CSI: Miami episodes.

Conrad: Wow. Ouch.

Marco: Ouch is right. And let me tell you, I could not sleep with that on.

Conrad: How do you mean?

Marco: Every five seconds they cut back to a shot of David Caruso! Constantly! And let me tell you, Caruso has two emotional speeds on that show. The first: Putting on his sunglasses. The second: Taking them off again. People could be on fire, running around screaming, bits of their skin melting off or whatever as creatures of the apocalypse commit homicides or devour souls or just what have you, and Caruso’s cool as Fonzie the whole fucking time.

Conrad: That seems accurate with the little bits of it I’ve caught occasionally.

Marco: Also, it’s freakishly bright. Like, too bright and dayglo for even Miami.

Conrad: Okay.

Marco: It would not let me sleep! I turned over, looked at the flickering light patterns on the wall, like some kind of twisted variation on Plato’s Cave and I felt like Caruso was picking me up from the airport and driving me straight to madness!

Conrad: Caruso’s like that.

Marco: This is the guy from NYPD Blue who subjected America to his ass. Why would you want to see this man’s ass?!

Conrad: Or Dennis Franz for that matter.

Marco: Well… obviously. But, so I lay there, squeezing my eyes shut. But it was no good, man. I knew that Caruso was in the room with me. Putting his fucking sunglasses on. Or worse.

Conrad: Worse?

Marco: He could’ve been taking them off again…

Conrad: Okay, so this was the nightmare?

Marco: Oh, no, this was real. Deadly real. Eventually I must’ve passed out from all the stress of his ontological torture and when I woke up, of course, A&E was still on, right?

Conrad: Yeah, of course.

Marco: So, the sun is shining through the window, birds are chirping little songs and I’m a little tired, but I’m breathing a sigh of relief. I’m all like, “Thank God, it’s morning, I made it. I survived!”

Conrad: This is going somewhere bad, isn’t it?

Marco: You bet your goofy ass it is, my friend. Because there on the TV…

Conrad: Yeah?

Marco: Motherfucking Chris Daughtry was on the TV. Somebody was actually interviewing him!

Conrad: Ugh. Gross.

Marco: Exactly! Why would anyone want to interview that fucker? Why is he on the TV? Why did my day have to start with these violent images? It was like… last night I couldn’t enter the domain of sleep and now… Now I can’t be awake with this in the world!

Conrad: I feel like I need a drink now.

Marco: Me too. From just, you know, reliving that traumatic experience. From being the plaything of the sandman.

Conrad: So what was the nightmare?

Marco: Oh, the nightmare. Yeah, sorry. That was last night. I was like in a room, but I wasn’t. I was like “the camera” or whatever. Anyway, there was a little boy and he was trapped in the room. No windows, yet there was moonlight slipping around. And he was sleeping like a little shit does and then goblins crawled out of the cracks in the walls and out from under the bed and cut off his eyelids or something.

Conrad: Damn. I like that. I mean, that’s seriously creepy.

Marco: Yeah, it was something. When I woke up, I knew you’d love it.

Conrad: You were right. And goblins, you say? Wow. Goblins. That part is especially wild. People don’t throw around the word “goblins” all that much anymore.

Marco: Let me tell you something about goblins, my friend. Something you may not know. Something very few people may actually know.

Conrad: Do it.

Marco: Goblins, man. They’re no joke. They’re fucking scary, and they’re fucked up. And they will fuck you up. You understand me?

Conrad: Yes, I believe I do. But let’s talk about something important now. Let’s talk about me and my dreams. And my nightmares.

Marco: Take aim and fire away, baby.

Conrad: So, you know, I’ve been taking melatonin a lot lately, right?

Marco: Cause you can’t get your hands on ambien, right?

Conrad: Yeah, sorta. I got tricked into trying to go all natural, which is a sham. Whenever in doubt, just go with hard drugs.

Marco: Put that on a t-shirt.

Conrad: Don’t tempt me.

Marco: But I feel you. I have several friends who don’t realize they’re becoming recreational vicodin addicts, which is cool, cause this is America and shit. But I can’t do that stuff anymore. It gives me freaky nightmares. I mean, genuinely freaky nightmares. Like, where the goblins show up and tell me I’ll have erectile dysfunction for the rest of my life and or will be forever locked in a mortgage I can’t afford.

Conrad: As long as you’re not longer dreaming about Avril Lavigne, you’ll be fine.

Marco: I’ll have you know: That was a very special time in my life.

Conrad: Anyway… me. And my nightmare.

Marco: Do it.

Conrad: So, I guess you’re supposed to take melatonin only so much, right? Until it stirs up your… well, I don’t know. Something. Some kind of chemical. I’m not a trained doctor or anything. But you take it short term, you get some rest, you move on.

Marco: Gotcha.

Conrad: But I keep taking it because it gives me juicy nightmares. And I’m a horror movie fan.

Marco: I remember that you were a Freddy guy more than a Jason guy.

Conrad: Exactly! Anyway, so the one I had last night… Wowza.

Marco: Oh?

Conrad: Oh yeah. So I’m like wandering around in this fucked up, dark version of Chuck E. Cheese’s, right?

Marco: This already sounds terrifying.

Conrad: Oh, it was. Believe you me. It so was. And there’s all these fat, sweaty white people around me.

Marco: Your ultimate nightmare.

Conrad: My ultimate daymare, you mean. But there they are. And there’s famous gross white people there too. Like Jeffrey Dahmer.

Marco: I remember that Peanut used to date a guy who looked like Jeffrey Dahmer. Man, I hated that guy.

Conrad: Me too. Well, Dahmer, anyway. But he was the guy who, later on I discovered, didn’t belong in the dream. But there was other famous people too. Like Mary Kay Letourneau. And Roman Polanski. And Joey Buttafuoco. And Debra Lafave. And Pete Townshend. And Bobby Fisher. And Gary Glitter!

Marco: Oh shit. You were at a child molester convention!

Conrad: Exactly. By accident, of course. Once I realized what was going on, I was like, “Oh shit, I gotta get the fuck outta here!”

Marco: Shit. I hope so.

Conrad: So I take off for the door, right? But right as I get to it, I notice the little bulletin board listing who all the speakers are going to be at this thing.

Marco: So, it was like a proper convention then? With speakers and talks and things?

Conrad: Yes! Terrifying, right?

Marco: Very.

Conrad: So I’m running my finger down the board, just looking at all the famous names. I remember that R. Kelly was on there, of course.

Marco: Right. Yeah. “Age ain’t nothing but a number,” after all.

Conrad: And then I get to the end. The keynote speaker.

Marco: Ooh, this is going to be good, isn’t it? Who was it?

Conrad: I’m not bullshitting you here. It was Jon Gosselin.

Marco: Oh… wow.

Conrad: I know, right?

Marco: Yeah. Wow. Eeesh.

Conrad: But, whereas everyone else had their name and like a title of what their speech was going to be about or whatever, after his name… there was just one word. One single word.

Marco: What was it?

Conrad: It was simply… “Gangsta.”

Marco: Oh. My.

Conrad: Uh huh. It shocked me away. And I sat there, in my bed, just catching my breath from the sheer intensity of the thing. And I just whispered it back to myself. “Gangsta.”

Marco: Wow…

Conrad: Yeah, I know.

Marco: Yeah.

Conrad: Yeah.

Marco: Yeah, uh… let’s talk about something else, okay?

I can see you.

The city is always watching you.

Man attends his own funeral! That’s the dream.

Speaking of the end of the world, could see Dick Cheney running for President in 2012?

The fuckers want to do a new TV version of fucking Charlie’s Fucking Angels.

“Is it any wonder I can’t sleep?”

Top 10 snipers in history.

Sean Connery was having sex with women at a very young age.

Missing girl recites fantasy novel but cannot remember own name.

Fuck off, Beard Rock.

William Goldman and Harold Pinter.

Woman wants webcam to replace her lost eye, see above.

Accidental dong.

An interview with Costa-Gavras.

Greyhound now offering direct service from Kansas to L.A. porn director’s driveway.

Why do some people see ghosts and others don’t?

Eye on the water.

David Brooks calls Sarah Palin a joke, and here’s the punchline: He’s right.

Gay sex scenes censored in From Here To Eternity.

Physicists: It’s what we don’t know that scares us.

Forever haunted by man’s suicide.

Enforcement Routine.”

I can see you!

…and I feel fine.

Hello! It’s Sunday. And Sundays, well, Sundays are boring, right? Right.

John Cusack goes out for a little jog in the middle of the apocalypse.

Went and saw 2012 yesterday, as promised. It was, well… Hmm.

the end of the world just got a whole lot more end of the world-ier.

My first reaction to it: Ehhhh. Not horrible, but not great. It’s exactly what’s advertised on the tin, I’ll put it this way. You’ve got a lot of real actors doing some cartoon shit while the world goes to hell all around them. The cast, when you think about it, is actually quite impressive. Also, Woody Harrelson’s in the mix too.

We can see you.

My second reaction to it: Why the fuck didn’t this come out in the middle of the summer?

It was literally this or ID4ever, right?

Third reaction: Comedy of the year, hands down.

Especially in a year when, if you think about it, the big comedy was… what? The Hangover? Right? Get serious. I never saw the movie, I won’t lie, but for a lot of reasons. Primarily, things like the trailer. Did you see it? It looks like it was made for retarded boys. But, you know what’s even worse than the trailer? Listening to people who actually liked the movie. They sound like retarded boys, don’t they? Anyway.

There is virtually no situation in which I will not find Thandie Newton excruciatingly gorgeous, except for maybe 2012.

But I really feel like 2012 deserves a good proper Counterforce review. It really does. It’s really our kind of movie, and I mean that in the best and worst possible ways. I don’t know that I’m the man for that job. Benjamin Light, I’m looking at you. Are you the man for that job?

Can you believe me actually made this ridiculous movie?

Anyway, I went and saw the film yesterday with Conrad Noir and walking out of the theater, still buzzing from all that ridiculousness, we saw this:

You are killing me with this ridiculous shit, Dwayne. You really are.

And we thought, “Dear God, who gave that man wings.” Much less Wings Of Desire and much more Red Bull: The Movie.

But then we got into a little conversation, talking about this and that and action heroes of the 80s, mostly cause we’ve been watching a lot of that horrendous/wonderful action movie fare from that decade, and we were talking about how action stars back then were so… foreign seeming. And maybe that contributed a lot to their allure. Maybe it also made some of the ridiculousness easier to stand, too?

For example there, Benjamin Light and were discussing a week or so ago what a remake of The Terminator would look like – since the franchise is up for sale, and should be sold to Joss Whedon, of course, cause why not? – And I brought up the question, “Does the killer robot from the future have to be Austrian?” Commander Light emphatically assured he that it indeed had to be. I’m taking his word for it.

This just looks magical.

Anyway, so Conrad and I, discussing action stars today, talking about guys like Dwayne Johnson, and how, in our minds, he’s not really latched on with America. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the idea of a “non-conventional” action star quite a bit, i.e. a non white guy running around screaming at people, doing high kicks, and blowing copious amounts of shit up. So why hasn’t “The Rock” caught on with us? I posit two possibilities:

1. In a grab for “credibility” or attempting to “not being as big a joke as he is,” he ditched his silly little wrestling moniker, “The Rock,” and went with his real name: Dwayne Johnson. Except, we can’t root for a guy named Dwayne.

2. Not foreign enough? Perhaps? I suggest investigating this has merit. Especially since it seems American action-loving fans get a bigger hard on from a ponce like Jason Statham than Dwayne Johnson.

How Statham picks up a girl.

Then, walking out of the theater, Conrad and I were looking at the various posters on display, the coming soons and the current releases. Part of me still wants to see This Is It. I’m a Michael Jackson fan, I won’t hide it.  But I’m also a huge Richard Matheson fan, and while I have serious reservations about the movie, I also kind of want to see The Box.

Cameron Diaz is trapped inside her own box.

But I don’t know that I trust Richard Kelly anymore. Donnie Darko was okay when it first came out, before you put it through any real tests of serious thought or logic and saw through it’s masturbatory philophosizing. It’s a glorified remake of Last Temptation Of Christ that doesn’t fully pan out. But Kelly also went on to make – speaking of Dwayne Johnson – the gloriously bad Southland Tales.

Dwayne Johnson Fever Dot Net.

Look, I’m not going to talk about the Philip K. Dick pastiche that was Southland Tales here. I’m just… not. I’m not going to do it. All I’ll say is I went into that movie wanting to like it. And I sit here now feeling like I’m a veteran of that war. It’s like Richard Kelly is George W. Bush and I was some dumb kid who supported the Iraq war until I went into the fucker and got my bits and pieces all cut off. Now I’m shell shocked.

But, yeah, there’s The Box, directed by Richard Kelly, starring Cameron Diaz and James Marsden, based on the Richard Matheson story, “Button, Button,” and was previously adapted into an episode of The Twilight Zone. We’ll see if I ever see it.

And again, here we are. It’s Sunday. Tomorrow’s the start of the “work week.” I’d love to Weeks In Review here at Counterforce, but lately it’s just me rambling and I’d feel bad directing the two and a half readers of this site back to more of me rambling. Poor fuckers. Oh yeah, the season finale of Mad Men was last Sunday. And we had a Friday the 13th happen this past week as well. There you go. Oh, and: Young women having sex with sea creatures. Now there you really go.

The Doctor hates funny robots.

But again, here we are. It’s Sunday. Let’s see, let’s see, let’s see… Oh! Tonight was the airing of the latest Doctor Who special over in the UK, “The Waters Of Mars,” the start of the end of David Tennant’s run as #10. You can catch it online if you’re good, if you’re very good, and it’s dark. And a bit sad. And leaves you kind of sweaty and breathless too.

Water Monsters! On Mars!

Also tonight is AMC’s remake of the classic 60s show, The Prisoner. I’d watch it, but I’m not sure I want to see my childhood get raped so thoroughly and with such production values. Ian McKellen is a good choice for just about anything, but Jim Caviezel? I think I hate you for that, AMC. Honestly, Jim Caviezel makes Keanu Reeves look like Marlon Brando to me.

You deserve so much better than this, Gandalf.

Oh well, here we are. The weekend’s almost over. I went to the movies to watch the end of the world as we know it and…

What?

What are you doing on Saturday?

…from Woody Allen‘s Play It Again, Sam.

The 13th.

Wait, is it - gasp! - the 13th?

It’s not that I’m an idiot (although, in the spirit of full disclosure, I sometimes am), it’s that I’m sometimes clueless. Or, forgetful. Or, mentally misplaced. You see, there’s a lot of shit floating around in my cranium. Some numbers, some interesting data, some bullshit ephemera about what episode of what season in what obscure TV show a character walked down the wrong hallway to go to the bathroom, tons of music, a few memorized beautiful things I’ve seen in my days, some horrors I’ve always memorized, and a collection of all the breasts I’ve come across and been mesmerized. Yeah, there’s a pun there. A bad one, at that.

This morning, I woke up and smiled that kind of smile that only happens on a day off. I got up, stretched, did the various things I do when I wake up alone, the scratching of places and releasing of certain human fluids, then went to the internet and began absorbing facts. A typical day. There’s “significant amounts” of water on the mother fucking moon!

Houston, we have enough water here to go skinny dipping!from here.

And I was reading some stuff about the anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, which I knew I was a few days late to, but it’s still fascinating, right?

Fuck this wall, yo

I even put on some music as I did this. Made myself a little playlist in my music player and put it on random/shuffle, and you know what song came on several times? My favorite song by the Cure, that’s what. This one:

That’s “The 13th,” and I just adore it. Not the video so much, but the song, definitely.

TGIF!

There was a commercial on TV for a Friday The 13th marathon. And I thought, “Huh, that’s interesting.” Thought about 2012, the batshit crazy stupid but fun looking Roland Emmerich movie that came on today that I’ll probably see tomorrow with Conrad Noir, who tells me he’s not all that interested because he was let down by The Day After Tomorrow. Well, no shit you were let down by The Day After Tomorrow, right? Anyway, that’s most likely on tomorrow’s agenda.

This guy is going to save the world from environmental catastrophe? Bullshit.

Long story short, it took me until like noon or later to actually fucking realize that it was Friday the 13th. I probably shouldn’t be bragging about that.

Silly superstitions will fuck you up, man.It happened at some local coffee shop that I went to, and, well, it was embarassing, but interesting. I live in a small town, the kind where it’s hard to not get to know everyone and their quaint little stories. And all the Southern gothic ghost stories that goes along with it. So I do my best to avoid people as best I can, but today I felt like getting out of the domecile for a bit and going for a run and experimenting with various Pandora stations on my smart brilliant phone.

Pandora, you bring me closer to God. And I want to fuck you like an animal.

The search for the perfect Pandora station is man’s constant crawl towards enlightenment, nirvana, and the fingerbanging of God. The pleasure is in the quest, not the capturing because the goal is unreachable, but we still try. That’s the beauty of the humans, or something. Regardless, I’ve been bouncing back and forth, trying to find a good station while running/walking, and I took a chance on an 80s station.

Not bad, but you know what? As great as they can be, Duran Duran and Frankie Goes To Hollywood and “The Safety Dance” just felt a little too gay for this job. I needed something less festive, so I figured I’d shift a decade forward and did a search for an appropriate 90s station. Came up mostly zero, no joke, except for a fascinating station that played 80s music stars trying to make a comeback in the 90s:

Okay, that’s the lovely Bryan Adams song from the Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves soundtrack, which is fantastic all on it’s own (except when it’s used for a Dawson’s Creek fanvid, sorry), but in actuality, the first song that came on that station was Adams’ “Run To You,” which isn’t bad. And following that was some Tom Petty, which is always good in my book, and some Bon Jovi, which is atrocious (though old Bon Jobi works appropiately in some bar settings, I’m loathe to admit), and a whole fucking lot of Guns N’ Roses. It was weird, but I guess it did the trick, workout-wise.

Then I got to the coffee shop, got something to eat, something to drink, and meant to hide myself in the corner with some headphones and devour my meal and some more internet on my phone. Also with me were some printouts of various things I needed to revise and a copy of Warren Ellis’ new POD book, Shivering Sands, which had just come in the mail today. I feel like I’ve read most of it previously (it’s a collection of various writings of his from the internet of the past few years), but still, I was excited.

How creepy is this picture, right?

But as it sometimes can be when interesting people are in the vicinity, and frightfully true when there’s less than interesting people buzzing around you, I got sucked into some conversation. Found out it was 13th day of the month coinciding with the fact that it was also a Friday. Also absorbed some recent gossip. And, because of the recent anniversary, got involved with a conversation about the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Cold War.

Sledgehammer.

You see, the conversation got even more interesting when it turned out that one of the women there was German, a former resident of East Berlin, who had been 18 when the wall came down, and moved to America shortly after. I’ve had a lot of bad experiences with Germans in the past (and no, I’m not referring to World War II, though that was no picnic either, ha ha!), but every once in a while, I have a good experience with their women. :)

The woman and I talked for some time about the Berlin Wall, and primarily what it was like for her growing up in East Berlin. Essentially, it was bleak, but fascinating. And we had one of those conversations that always pop where she mentions that she was feeling uneasy today because she had left her cell phone at home and she just feels like she’s naked and out of touch, but growing up poor in Germany, they didn’t even have a phone in their house til she was 16. “How did we live in that ancient, strange world?” she asked with a laugh.

The Lives Of Others

She had just seen The Lives Of Others a few weeks ago, she told me, and we talked about the movie, which is really quite good if you haven’t seen it yet, and about the Stasi in general. She told me that the movie scares her because back then, when she was growing up, you just always knew you were being watched, being monitored. You always suspected who was a Stasi man, but you never really knew for sure. And it didn’t hit you until later that it wasn’t so much agents of the Stasi you had to worry about, but those around you because everyone was informing on each other to get ahead.

Relations between Germany and America got a little weird after this.Could’ve been worse. He could’ve thrown up in her lap.

From there we went into little aspects of German history, talking about “The Iron Chancellor” and how the Prussians united the country a hundred years before the Wall fell, and we even talked a little about Merkel, or “Angie,” as she called her, and told me what a fan she is, being that they’re both East German girls. She told me how it was so weird for her to come to America in her twenties and get a more full view of her own little world up til then and to compare it to growing up in communist Germany, where history was repainted with a propaganda slant. She mentioned that as a teen they were never allowed to refer to the Wall as just “the Wall,” it was always as the “tool for anti-fascist defense” or something like that.

The children.

She told me how when she was in school, it was a mandatory field trip for the kids to be taken to the concentration camps and shown all the gross details, the rooms with human remains permanently staining the walls, with the empty shoes of little babies that were turned to dust, the lampshades made out of flayed skin featuring Jewish tattoos. She told me how the physical evidence of the darkest corners of history would never leave her mind and part of her was glad that she was forced to see that shameful part of her country’s past, but that it’s something she knows kids don’t go to see anymore.

The bodies.

I don’t want to use the word “fascinating” again in this post, but that’s what it was. A fascinating conversation, and a fantastic one, informative and insightful. I thanked her for her time and being so patient with my curiousity, and of course for letting me know that it was actually Friday the 13th. Then I left, since I had been there for quite some time and it was starting to look like it might rain. I wasn’t interesting in listening to sad old men with hair plugs crooning bar anthems into my ear, so I just walked in silence, my head heavy with thoughts about everything we discussed.

Come over!Komm rüber!” Hans Conrad Schumann defects, from here.

It did start raining before I got back to my front door, of course, but my mind was elsewhere and I didn’t actually realize it until I was pulling my key out to let myself back in and realized I was shivering there as the water dripped off of me.

Watching and listening.

And how did you spend your Friday the 13th?