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Over the past month, I've been struggling for even the briefest amounts of free time that wasn't work. In the hour or so I got each evening with dinner, I'd been slowly introducing my husband to an odd bit of humour I'd picked up in Perth -- The Mighty Boosh. Like all things out of my collection that I introduce to other people, even people I live with, I was apprehensive. Many of my friends are weirdos, and even then, most of them find my taste baffling. My best attempt to explain why I like Mighty Boosh is summed up in my favourite Yellow Monkey music video: My Winding Road. The Youtube sample I found is a little blurry, and I'll have to pop up my own copy of the thing at some point to enliven people's lives with the horror, but the basic premise here is that watching and appreciating The Mighty Boosh is akin to watching five minutes of a Japanese rock song set to a disco beat, festooned with a dramatic judge, a jury of cloaked TV-headed spectres, throbbing multi-coloured dance floors and men in tight sequined suits with their chests partially exposed, bedecked in strings of Mardi Gras beads and feather boas.

So far, Seth's patiently sat through the first season of Mighty Boosh, which I'd never seen, and actually found quite banal and odd myself. He's patiently sat through the first four episodes of season two, the season I have watched, right up to the very first episode I ever saw -- Nanageddon. He giggled at the same jokes I did. He's been the one who put up new DVDs on Netflix, so we could watch them together. Why this is significant to me is because it represents how, even though things have been busy and tiring in my life, in the past two years, my life has gained more friends and more understanding than it has in the other 25 years of living.

In exactly this manner, the upcoming publication of Morbid Curiosity Cures the Blues represents the pinnacle of why I moved to San Francisco. A bunch of years ago, I worked for a little magazine called Gothic.Net. One of its frequent contributors, Loren Rhoads, would help fill its pages with these moving essays about the cities of the dead she'd personally experienced. I was fascinated by her articles. Cemeteries are for me, like libraries -- gentle places that resonate with silence. To walk in them, to feel their slight chill, is to be at peace. Eventually, I worked up the courage to scribble little comments under her essays online. To my surprise, these tiny exchanges blossomed into pleasant conversations. At Loren's nudging, I submitted an essay about my uncle's exorcism, which I witnessed when I was in my late teens, to her magazine, Morbid Curiosity. That story, The Bomoh, was published in issue #7 of MC in 2003.

When I first visited San Francisco in 2007, among the first persons to welcome me to what would eventually be my new home was Loren. We visited real cemeteries together, and she showed me such things as her very lovely collection of morbid stereoscopes and Victorian funerary photographs. It was very cool to feel welcomed, and in that regard, it was very cool to really not feel like I was a misunderstood weirdo anymore. About a year on, that feeling and that idea has just kept growing.

At the time of our first cemetery visits, Loren was working on compiling stories from the entire run of Morbid Curiosity into an anthology. She succeeded, overwhelmingly, and this compiled collection of stories about the "unsavory, unwise, unorthodox and unusual" will be coming out on September 29 from Scribner Books. It's already up for pre-ordering at Amazon, and it has a lovely website that Loren (morbidloren) and her husband, Mason, have put together, complete with a darkly atmospheric book trailer. Or if you prefer, since Loren would like us to support our local bookstores by buying the book there, I could march you to Borderlands from my hermitage and take you out for a beignet and tea to go with myself.

As I mentioned earlier, this publication is important to me. On a personal level, it reaffirms the idea that I can be weird and I can do that without being shunned. On a professional level, it's the first time I'm seeing my writing in a work from a major publisher -- it's exciting and scary all at the same time. As part of promotional efforts for this book, I may also be doing readings and generally being quite a dork in various places throughout the city, which is also exciting and frightening because it will involve people (people!), and my pronunciation is dreadful.

It has a website. It is real!

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
aefre
Sep. 22nd, 2009 12:51 am (UTC)
Funny you should blog about Boosh. I spent Saturday making a music video with Rich Fulcher here in Hollywood. Haven't had a chance to post about it yet. Good to know that at least a couple of people on my f-list will know who I am talking about when I do. :)
vampyrichamster
Sep. 22nd, 2009 01:30 am (UTC)
I do indeed know the Mighty Boosh. And an admittedly terrible crush on Noel Fielding. :)
morbidloren
Sep. 22nd, 2009 12:38 pm (UTC)
Thank you for becoming my friend.
vampyrichamster
Sep. 22nd, 2009 04:50 pm (UTC)
Thank you for being mine.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )