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The Happy, Skipping, Pylons of Fear

17 May

May 17, 2016


I found that gif floating around Facebook. I’d like to take credit for it but I can’t. I can’t even take full credit for the story I’m about to tell, but here it is.

When my brother, the long-lost Allan Keyes and I were little tykes, we’d often be bundled into the family car to take a trip through the wilds of New Jersey to see our relatives, an aunt and uncle and cousins. It was a chore. We rarely wanted to go. And being rotten little kids we were never too well behaved on the ride. 

New Jersey is known for a few things: toll booths every three yards on the highway, The New York Jets, and those endless miles of electrical wires stretching pylon to pylon all the way down to the horizon. So any trip on the highway was accompanied by an almost non-stop view of those metal monoliths. During the day they looked kind of boring and industrial, but at night they could be eerie with all the lights on them, sometimes blinking on and off.

Anyway, my brother and I were young and stupid and probably very annoying to the adults in the car until one day my Aunt told us that the pylons were monsters that move when you’re not looking at them.

I know what you’re thinking- Doctor Who totally ripped off the weeping angels from my Aunt. She should Sue. (Ha! See what I did there? Two of you will get it.)


Anyway, we’d calm down and look anywhere but out the windows and then, suddenly whirl around and try to catch them moving. We never did, but we kept trying. Did I mention that we were young and stupid? I was 24 years old! NO, no, just kidding. 

As soon as I saw that gif online, this is the story that popped into my head. Crazy thing is… it’s true. The Pylons. New Jersey. All of it. It’s all true.


Meanwhile, they say New Jersey is the Garden State, but did you notice that they never tell you what’s growing in the garden?

Triffids. New Jersey is full of triffids.


PS: Happy Birthday to Saarah!



The Cojoined (And Possibly Transgender) Mermaids of Wildwood NJ

22 Jul

July 22, 2015

Sideshows, carnivals, and traveling circuses used to feature all sorts of “amazing” oddities and displays. Bearded ladies, wolf-men, snake-people, and even mermaids could be seen and gawked at for just a few cents. But nowadays, not only has the price gone up, but the public demands more and more. Nope, plain old run-of-the-mill mermaids aren’t enough to satisfy audiences today. This amazing piece of sideshow art was on display in Wildwood New Jersey.


These are not your average mermaids, nope. These are conjoined mermaids. And ironically, they are painted behind a pair of seats it would be impossible for them to sit in.

This being the modern era, and not knowing thing one about how mermaids would reproduce- like a fish? Like a human? -the painting is very unhelpful in that regard, the possibility came up that maybe, somehow, those conjoined mermaids are also transgender. The one on the right does look a little more masculine than the other. (Unbelievably, alcohol played no part in that conversation.)

I will wisely leave that topic alone.

However, although I am sure that isn’t vintage, it is still a great example of old sideshow art.


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