Archive for Books

Notes on a Case of Melancholia

Posted in Books, death, illustration, psychology, skulls and skeletons with tags , , , , on December 13, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Nicholas Gurewich, the creator of the surreal and wonderful Perry Bible Fellowship comic has kickstarted a project I’m incredibly jazzed about: Notes on a Case of Melancholia, inspired by Edward Gorey and Jungian analysis (two of my very favorite things! *covers mouth with hand so as not to squeal with joy*).

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This a book about Death’s despair regarding his kid- an affectionate “Little Death” who simply doesn’t have what it takes to carry on the family business. Dr. Edgar O. Wye is a psychoanalyst who takes Death on as a patient. The book’s rhyming narration will be taken from his case notes.

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The book will run about 42-50 pages long, and will be completely illustrated. Graphic novel “frames” will be used on occasion, but this will really be more of a picture book – deliberately similar to the short books of Edward Gorey, but with a character-driven plot. Though it has a pretty high body count, it is in essence a family story.

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Watch the video and support the project at the Notes on a Case of Melancholia Kickstarter.

Desktop Goodies 11/15

Posted in absurd, advertising, anatomy, art, Books, candy coated nightmares, humor, sculpture, sea, vintage with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 15, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I’ve always been fascinated by “visible” anatomy models. I finally have a kit, waiting to be built (it’s a real labor of love, as all the organs and parts are white and must be hand painted!). But I look forward to it. Here’s a classic:
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Is he dead in the back of your van?
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A lesser known medical condition…
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Maybe it’s just me, but not once in my life have I thought I’d like to “relax” by having my breasts vibrate.
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If you want to feel like a rainbow threw up on your bed, I’ve got the sheets for you! The lollipop (and satisfied smile) really makes this image.
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Gorgeous pulp art illusion.
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Octopus gargoyle! More buildings need these.
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One of the most breathtaking sand sculptures I’ve ever seen.
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This is a real book. Can you image, even in your wildest dreams, a more romantic title? Nevermind the fact that he appears to be strangling her.
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Wow. Ads have come a long way. Now they only imply that people hate the sight of you.
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Yes, please.
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Most of us probably walk around having no idea how adorable baby llamas are. Now you know.
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Caption contest: what is this bear telling her?
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Crazy Vintage Diet Books

Posted in absurd, Books, food, humor, vintage with tags , , , , on November 12, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

The Sexy Pineapple Diet in Desktops Goodies: Crazy Book Edition inspired this spinoff post about some of the more absurd diet publications of years gone by (for the record, I’m sure many of today’s crazes will eventually be relegated to this category). I had to see what else was lurking in our culture’s weight conscious past. Caution: the final one is actually NSFW.

Oh, to blame every sorry sugar binge I’ve had on the Devil!
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I LOVE the following two.
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icecream“Minimum of willpower!” Now that has an appeal!

grid-cell-11066-1411410778-15THIS, on the other hand…
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Ready to get ribald? No, you’re not ready for these. You’ve been warned.
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Halloween Countdown: Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures in Hell

Posted in Books, halloween, undead, vintage with tags , , , on October 28, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Over the weekend I received the most amazing book as a gift. I think it’s safe to say to any readers of this blog…RUN, don’t walk, to procure this incredible edition.

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If you’re not familiar with diableries, have a look at the book description:

In France, around 1860, from the loins of a traditional national fascination with all things diabolical, was born a new sensation – a series of visionary dioramas depicting life in a strange parallel universe called ENFER – Hell – communicated to an eager audience by means of stereoscopic cards, to be viewed in the stereoscopes which had already become popular in the 1850s.

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This 3-D phenomenon, which fascinated a nation for 40 years, is now yours to share. This book, the fruit of half a lifetime’s study by three impassioned authors, brings every one of the published Diableries into the 21st century for the very first time. Some of them are so rare that at the time of writing there is no known complete collection of the originals of these masterpieces.

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The book comes with a viewer called The Owl (invented by Queen guitarist Brian May. Who knew?), and every time I glimpsed an image through it, I gasped. These dioramas, in remarkable 3D, are truly a sight to behold. There are endless details to drink in; incredibly entertaining and well crafted. There is also a great deal of interesting supplementary information to read.

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Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures in Hell

Thank you, my dear GD, for bringing these wondrous displays into my life!

Desktop Goodies: Crazy Book Edition

Posted in absurd, Books, humor, vintage with tags , , , on September 26, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

My apologies if any of these are repeats. I may have posted one or two of them and accidentally re-saved, but I’m pretty sure almost all of these are new to the blog.

Don’t get me wrong; the best things in life are truly free…but just in case, there’s a book for people who care enough to do the very least.
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This poor man looks like he’s happy as he prepares his wife for the reaping of grim death.
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I wonder how long this book is. How much can be written about this particular subject? Chapter one: turn on water. Chapter two: turn off water. Chapter three: sit in water. Chapter four: get out of water. Did I just write a book?
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Suspend your disbelief…
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It might be difficult for those without a corporeal form to get their hands on this book (literally, I guess). But it’s good to be prepared.
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Best autobiography title I’ve ever seen:
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We all do it:
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I have the power to walk through my house in a sheer negligee with a bouquet of flowers…
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“Erogetic” appears to be a word entirely made up for the sake of this book. But a picture is worth a thousand words.
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Charles Robinson: The Sensitive Plant

Posted in art, Books, illustration, poetry with tags , , , on September 20, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Every now and then, a painting captures me with a brilliant element of subtlety. This Charles Robinson piece from Shelley’s The Sensitive Plant did so with its faint outline of hooded figures in an illuminated procession behind lush, colorful flora. The placement and the vague outlines create a chilling moment of recognition when the eye first fixates on that part of the scenery.

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And on the fourth, the Sensitive Plant
Felt the sound of the funeral chant,
And the steps of the bearers, heavy and slow,
And the sobs of the mourners, deep and low

The Sensitive Pant- Percy Bysshe Shelley (full text)
Source

Absurd Books of the Week

Posted in absurd, Books, humor with tags , , on August 26, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I was recently given links to two of the most absurd pieces of literature I’ve ever laid eyes on (avert your eyes, children).

As far as I can tell, this little morsel of biblio-beastiality was written unironically. Not only is it sold out on Amazon, but the reviews are strikingly positive.
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And…brace yourselves…THIS is also real.

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If you can’t read that clearly, it’s: How to Good-Bye Depression: If You Constrict Anus 100 Times Everyday. Malarkey? or Effective Way?

Here is the author synopsis.

I think constricting anus 100 times and denting navel 100 times in succession everyday is effective to good-bye depression and take back youth. You can do so at a boring meeting or in a subway. I have known a 70-year-old man who has practiced it for 20 years. As a result, he has a good complexion and has grown 20 years younger. His eyes sparkle. He is full of vigor, happiness and joy. He has neither complained nor born a grudge under any circumstance. Furthermore, he can make #### three times in succession without drawing out.

In addition, he also can have burned a strong, beautiful fire within his abdomen. It can burn out the dirty stickiness of his body, release his immaterial fiber or third attention, which has been confined to his stickiness. Then, he can shoot out his immaterial fiber or third attention to an object, concentrate on it and attain happy lucky feeling through the success of concentration.

If you don’t know concentration, which gives you peculiar pleasure, your life looks like hell.

If you see an unbelievable book (vintage or current), please share! I’ll do occasional roundups and credit all contributors.

(Thank you for these great links, Ryogue!)

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