Ghost stories wend their way from Noh, Kabuki and the Bunraku puppet theater all the way through “J Horror” and the vengeful ghost ladies with invasive hair of today. There are many tales of love, bitterness and vengeful ghosts, but like a certain Scottish play, Tokaido Yotsuya Kaidan is unique in having a curse associated with it.
Despite the evidence so far presented, Dublin was more than just a non-stop tour of whiskey and bars. The city was in the midst of its annual Bram Stoker Festival, which included storytelling, art, and roving packs of vampires handing out penny dreadfuls.
This past October, I happened to be in Dublin at the same time the city was hosting Whisky Live Dublin (as well as the Bram Stoker Festival, which included packs of roving vampires handing out penny dreadfuls). Over on Alcohol Professor, I write about Whisky Live Dublin but not Bram Stoker Fest, and about all the Irish whiskey that never makes it to American shores.
Gift guides clog every aspect of media once we hit December, and while I can’t claim that my Whiskey Gift Guide on Alcohol Professor isn’t part of the crowd complaining about how crowded it is, at least it’s a list I stand behind, composed of stuff I actually like and that you can actually find and possibly afford. So while it lacks in $10,000 collector bottles and stuff that vanishes immediately into the private collections of investors, it contains plenty of great booze.
The surreal swirl of stark futurism, psychedelia, and neon indulgence is…pleasantly overwhelming? Comfortably disturbing? Certainly it’s something that demands one’s attention even as it lulls you into a fugue state.
The official books that continue the adventures of James Bond beyond those written by Ian Fleming constitute a long, occasionally rewarding, often perilous minefield of reading material. For every success in the series, there is a scene of…oh I don’t know. James Bond visiting Euro Disney. Or James Bond sitting down at University of Texas student party hang-out Chuy’s to eat out of plastic basket while slurping flavored frozen margaritas. Which is to say that being “better” than most sanctioned 007 adventures is something of a loaded compliment.
A long time ago, George Lucas hired Alan Dean Foster to write a sequel to Star Wars, operating under the assumption that Star Wars might not make much money, that the sequel would need to be really low budget, and that Harrison Ford would refuse to reprise his role as Han Solo. On the Cultural Gutter, In An Alternate Galaxy Far, Far Away looks at what Foster came up with