Issue 9 | October 2013
Letter from the
editor Welcome boils and ghouls,
David “Diabolical” Pantoja - Art Director
Issuu - www.issuu.com/theanglerfish Tumblr - theanglerfishmagazine.tumblr.com Twitter - www.twitter.com/anglerfishzine Facebook - www.facebook.com/theanglerfish
Managers & Editors Brandon “The Butcher“ Dannenhoffer Eric “The Evil Chort“ Cole Jason “Satyr“ Stack Keren “Mutilator” Moros Jordan “The Jötunn“ Kahle David “Diabolical” Pantoja Eefje “The Executioner“ Savelkoul Katherine “Firestarter” Taylor
Founder Editor in Chief Entertainment Editor News Editor Reader Submissions Art Director Sr. Design Lead Sr. Design Lead
Graphics & Design Maddie “Mad-eyed”Valley Rosie “Scylla“ Strom Mayela “The Malevolant Ghoul“ Gutierrez Hayley “Harpy“ Pike Tiffany “Talented Killer“ Kuo Jackie “The Fairy“ Files Jessika “Rusalka“ Raisor Kenza “Soul-eater“ Samlali Vicious Vampi Tress
Designer/ Illustrator Designer/ Illustrator Designer/ Illustrator Illustrator Illustrator Illustrator Illustrator Illustrator Illustrator
Writers Marissa “Malicious Elf” Hubelbank Alyssa “The Alluring Nightdemon“ Nabors Cecily “Celestial Alien“ Dreyfuss Sarah “The Sadist” Mills Melissa “The Merciless“ Heineman Lucy “The Lovable Psyco“ Pegg Joie “The Jinxed“ Ling Kaya “Medusa” Mendelsohn Ruth “Ruthless“ Tirado Pallavi “The Pixi“ Pillutla
Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer Writer
Halloween and Horror movies have always thrilled me. I remember watching “A Nightmare on Elm Street” for the first time and being simultaneously scared and excited. October isn’t just about Halloween, Candy and Horror, There is Pumpkin and apple pie, trees set ablaze with fall foliage and warm comfy sweaters. If you aren’t in an area where those apply than I guess it is just horror, Halloween and candy but that ain’t half bad. Not half bad at all. Scary movies and spooky comedies have been this months personal past time. I can’t say how many times I’ve watched “The Shining” or how many times I re-watched “The Simpson’s Treehouse of Horrors” specials. With the cold weather moving in here at the Anglerfish couch time has increased and exercise time, well there was never really exercise time. If you find yourself passed out in a sugar coma, surrounded by candy wrappers and with the entire “Friday the 13th” series playing to you and your sleeping cohorts, then you may need some exercise. My big boned frame will be attempting to actually work out burning off all the Hershey miniatures I will be devouring on the 31st. Eric has a great article about how Terrible Exercise can be when you go jogging with zombies. Jogging with Zombies you’re guaranteed to shed a few pounds one way or another. Fiends read, read with ghoulish delight, and let us know what you think. You can stalk us on Facebook or twitter and everyone here is just dieing to hear from you. We know you are out there, the old lady without a face has told us you are out there, so talk to us. Don’t fall asleep and stay out the dog park, David “Diabolical” Pantoja Art Director - The Anglerfish Magazine.
Social Media/ PR Mert “The Merry Kelpie“ Keceli Tristan “The Tiny Demoness“ Dane Megan “The Massmurderer“ Manzano
Welcome to our frightfully fun October issue. I am Dave the Art Director of this putrid periodical and this month me and my fiends are happy to bring you, our dear reader, some spooky articles. We have an interview with the talented and creative Kristina Horner (she’s a real killer), a bite and nibble of the Hannibal Fandom and a look at spooky days from around the globe. At this point you are likely wondering where Eric Cole the Editor is. Well things around the Anglerfish have been hectic and Eric is all tied up with preparations for the human sacrifice. We are hoping the evil presence on page 13 will be satiated so we don’t have any missing readers.
Social Media Social Media Social Media
Cover by: Eefje “The Executioner“ Savelkoul
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Table of Contents 03
Thoughts From Places
NFS: Kristina Horner
Strange Dark Tales and a Treehouse
All Hallows Read
7 Reasons to Love the Fall
Talking About Fear
Why I Hate Horror Movies
The Sound of Horror
Geek Fall Flicks
7 Tips For Being a Good Volunteer
History of Halloween
Exercise is Terror
PS: The US & The Internet
The Otherside of Halloween
Taking Back the Night
Art & Literature Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Zagreb, Croatia Thoughts From Places
This is one of those times when I remember why I like walking tours and in this case, a free one run by young people. Ordinary, innocuous-looking passages, streets and buildings come alive with the words that flow from the guide. I suppose there is only so much you can read up on from a guide book, unlike hearing it from the lips of a local. Perhaps it’s because the latter lends a more storyteller-like feel in his descriptions of the place he’s brought up in; or the subtle pride in his voice as he talks of his hometown. While the city is popular with tourists, it doesn’t lose the feel of a real, living place. Most interestingly, Zagreb is a place that tells many stories. by: Vern Lin The guide leads us to a beautiful Baroque church (the Church of St. Catherine), where expensive weddings here are all the rage among locals, or so our guide Zenid tells us. The walls of the church are pink, over-the-top, he adds; a detail I would not
have noticed under the dim light. People would get married here and just around the corner is the City Hall where they would sign the official documents. As we walk on, we pass a museum, an unusual and fascinating one called the Museum of Broken Relationships. The museum showcases personal objects of previous
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relationships from former lovers who donate them, with descriptions detailing their significance and how their love fell apart; everything from a glass horse to an axe. There is something aptly ironic about it all. A place where two lovers chime ‘till death do us part’ stands less than a hundred feet from where the relationship
does the dying. A place where two people would make vows to each other is juxtaposed with a place that holds all the mementoes of said broken hopes and dreams. I wonder if the two locations are more than just a coincidence. We now find ourselves in front of the beautiful and famous St Mark’s Church. But the guide’s story about the seemingly ordinary square of inlaid bricks in the centre of the square is what catches my attention. There are marks and holes that indicate something used to be there. And there was. This is the place where people were tied to posts and publicly shamed. So-called ‘witches’ were burned here as
well. As we stand there under the light drizzle, I wonder how much pain, sadness and shame and cruelty has been stamped into those few square feet of ground, the same ones unsuspecting tourists trample on now in apathetical ignorance. If stones could talk, what stories would they tell? How many such places exist everywhere else in the world, but forgotten? How far have we come since? Today, we seem to prefer to do our shaming of people who are different than us anonymously instead over social media. The keyboard is our fire and the virtual online world the stake, with very real consequences in real life. We may not literally burn people at the stake
anymore, but the hurt and emotional pain we cause is no less destructive. The thoughts running through my head are bleak, but as we reach our starting point at Ban Jelačić Square, I see a group of young kids playing with a red ball in the square. Their laughter and sound of running feet fills the damp air and a small glimmer of hope emerges. The museum and the small square of bricks tells us that the past cannot be undone but we can choose to change for the better, to value the people in our lives and those around us as well, for isn’t that the crux of humanity?
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Nerdfighter Spotlight Kristina Horner She’s a vlogger, crafter, gamer, and more! Kristina Horner sits down with The Anglerfish to dish on being part of the Five Awesome Girls, a Fiesta Agent, and being creative in the social media age. by Jason “The Satyr” Stack
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Reader Submissions The Anglerfish: Kristina, thanks for coming and sitting down with us today! Kristina Horner: It’s my pleasure! TA: How did you get started on the web? KH: To really dial it back, ever since I first discovered the Internet, I was exploring the junction of content creation and communities, like learning HTML coding and playing Neopets. The more I was on the Internet, the more I found similar junctions. And then I found the vlogging community on YouTube. Since then, I’ve been fascinated with how far people can take things, in terms of content creation, and it has fueled my thirst for continuing to find new things. TA: Reaching back a bit in your web history, I think that you’re chiefly known for your time as one of the Five Awesome Girls. How’d that come about? KH: I wouldn’t consider it my main thing, but it came from an idea to create a project similar to Brotherhood 2.0, except with some friends. I went to Lauren [Fairweather] – who became Tuesday on the channel – and developed the idea. We thought that nobody would watch the channel, but it grew into so much more. TA: Were you surprised at how far-reaching it became?
KH: It’s an industry. And there are networks in any industry. In some ways, I’ve been around for a long time and I know a lot of people, but knowing a lot of people doesn’t instantly get you fame. And nowadays, it’s harder to break in to the YouTube industry. TA: Getting back to your vlogging roots, were you ever worried about friends from high school or college finding your videos? KH: I wasn’t making videos in high school, but a lot of my friends who I keep in touch with now know about my videos and make videos themselves. If people I went to school with found out about what I was doing, they’d probably think it was cool. TA: Any thoughts on the scrutiny of public life via social media -back when you started on the web versus now?
KH: You switch as you do more on social media. Personally, I talked about more things on Five Awesome Girls and made mistakes with public breakups. While still having a very public life, I’ve found ways to make it less personal and still keep it genuine. People feel like they If people I went have the right to comment on your decito school with sions and so on, so you’ve got to learn how found out about to keep yourself guarded.
what I was doing, they’d probably think it was cool.
KH: When it got as popular as it did, we just kept going. We took things seriously in the first year, but relaxed more in the second year, like not making videos every week. The third year was more serious again, but we gave each other five free passes because we knew we were getting busier. It lasted three years longer than we anticipated. TA: How’d the reunion at VidCon come about? KH: Hayley [G. Hoover], Kayley [Hyde], and I always meet up at VidCon. Lauren had never been, but she managed to make it out west for VidCon 2013. Liane [Graham] mostly stuck to local New York-based Harry Potter events, but she jumped on board when the offer was extended. TA: When it comes to YouTube conventions, do you think there’s a major difference when it comes to East versus West Coast? KH: It’s harder for the East coasters to get out West, but it’s a matter of convenience for the industry. There have been events out East, though, like Playlist Live in Florida and 7/8/9 in New York, and I think there was a YouTube film festival in Toronto recently. TA: From your time on YouTube so far, do you feel that a sort of YouTube “hierarchy” has developed over the years? One person knows another and cliques form, leading to potential favoritism, and so on?
TA: Are you worried at all about making videos as a job and perhaps working parttime versus having a career?
KH: “Career” is really subjective. I’m not the kind of person being happy in an office doing menial tasks. I’d like some sort of combination of the two, whether it’s me starting my own company or doing this sort of thing for a company. I don’t aspire to be a famous YouTuber. I’ve always wanted it to be a springboard for a larger project. I’d love my videos to be a side thing, like ‘Job Hunters’ or for my own site. TA: For those who aren’t aware of what ‘Job Hunters’ is, would you care to elaborate on it? KH: Sure! It’s a web series that I started working on over two years ago. A lot of my friends in Seattle are into film and being creative, so myself and three other friends poured ourselves into this project. If I had to describe it, it’s ‘The Hunger Games’ meets ‘Big Brother’ … if it happened in ‘Community,’ but it’s not like anything else; however, it is somewhat influenced by the style of ‘Community.’ It’s a literal dystopian job hunt where people hunt other people in an area, hoping to survive long enough to get a job – but it’s a comedy. We’re aiming to launch season 2 in mid-winter, but we’re still doing pick-up shoots and looking to get into post-production in mid-October. TA: Is it hard to work comedy into a dystopian setting? I don’t see those two genres or classifications jiving. KH: It’s more about situational humor. We wanted to do something different with the dystopian trend, so we thought this was
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Reader Submissions the way to do it. The characters [in the show] are so desensitized to violence that they brush it off, like Devin, a medic who is so bad at his job that he kills people while trying to save them. TA: Shifting gears a little, what’s it like being a part of Wonderly, the main female content creator YouTube network? KH: It’s been cool. We don’t really know what it’s going to grow into, but it’s really supportive right now. TA: As for one of your recent projects, is there any news on Jetpack Unicorn, the card game you Kickstarted? KH: The games are going out in the first couple of weeks in October, and they’ll be in stores shortly thereafter. I’m excited for fans to have the games. TA: How’d you find Wyrd Games, the company publishing the game? KH: We fell into working with them. They reached out to us, we pitched them the idea, and they went with it. TA: Moving on to recent successes, congratulations on being a part of the Fiesta Movement once again! What went into applying and reapplying? KH: The first time, in 2009, there were fewer vloggers, and I made a lot of friends through it. This time around, the organizers reached out to favorite alums because they were familiar with the content that most of these prior Fiesta Agents created. It’s my favorite project, sponsored video-wise. TA: How did you react when you got the call or e-mail about being accepted? KH: The first time, it seemed too good to be true. I was flipping out! I got to drive this cool car and go on all these cool adventures. The second time around, I knew how cool it was, and I was excited about getting the chance to do it again. So, much like the first time, I was bouncing off the walls. TA: Are there any limitations for the missions? KH: We get a mission every month and we have to complete the mission in the month to get first dibs on future missions, which we pick online. There are budgetary limits, but we get free gas – within reason. TA: Are there any plans for the next mission/adventure? KH: I already finished this month’s [September]. It’s a style/ design challenge, but I altered the mission, which was to host a painting party. Instead, I brought a bunch of friends together and we painted miniatures based off my car’s colors. TA: Miniatures? How’d you get into miniatures? KH: They snuck into my life over time, mostly over the last year.
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I first discovered them at GeekGirlCon in Seattle. My friend and I love silly art projects, so when we discovered a miniature painting room, we had to try it out. We weren’t very good at it, though. At PAX Prime, Reaper, a major miniature company, had a painting room, so I stopped by there. Some friends also invited me to a painting party. Once you start to figure out the techniques and tricks, it comes naturally. TA: Are you planning on going anywhere with the miniatures? KH: I have this thing of turning hobbies into things that can become profitable, like “Job Hunters,” but I’ll continue to do for fun. TA: Speaking of hobbies, how’d Team Hypercube come together? KH: My friends and I like to play video games, so we thought it’d be fun to make a video with game commentary. All the comments basically said the same thing: “Make a gaming channel!” You could say it just happened organically, and we brainstormed ways to make it into its own thing, so it’s a different type of channel rather than my vlogs. TA: As for past projects, like the Parselmouths and ALL CAPS, is there any music from you in the near future? KH: I put music on hold because of vocal nodes, but I’m looking to put out a “Job Hunters” music video as Avery. TA: What sorts of geeky things are you obsessing over now, and what are you looking forward to in the coming months and/or year? KH: I’m a big fan of app games. I have way too many, but I’m big on Clash of Clans right now. TV-wise, I love ‘Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ and ‘The Walking Dead,’ and I’m in the middle of a ‘Battlestar Galactica’ re-watch, but there a lot of TV shows and games I really like. It’s hard fitting in time to read, but I’m currently in the middle of Ally Condie’s ‘Matched’ trilogy. It’s pretty romance-heavy, more so than ‘Divergent’ and ‘The Hunger Games,’ but it’s a very interesting world that I’d like to learn more about. And sometimes I’m reading a few books at once. As for movies, I’m mostly looking forward to upcoming adaptations, like ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire,’ ‘Divergent,’ ‘Ender’s Game,’ and ‘The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug.’ And, of course, ‘The Fault in Our Stars,’ thanks to John’s behind-thescenes involvement. TA: And this being the October issue, what are some of your favorite things about October and the Halloween season? KH: I’m a big fan of Halloween. It’s more the first foray into all. My housemates and I throw big Halloween parties for our friend groups, and we tend to make our own costumes. We love costume parties. But corn mazes, costume parties … I love it all. As for movies … that’s tough, but I’m going with a classic: ‘Hocus Pocus.’ There’s also ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’ and ‘Cube,’ which we named our house after.
Reader Submissions TA: You’ve certainly got some great choices there! With that, I think we’re going to wrap things up, so thanks for taking the time to chat with us today, Kristina! KH: You’re welcome and it’s been my pleasure! Have a great day!
Kristina blogs at kristinahorner.com, tweets at twitter.com/KristinaHorner, and vlogs at youtube.com/ITalkToSnakes.
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Strange Dark Tales and A Treehouse ‘The Simpsons’ “Treehouse of Horror” specials have thrilled ‘Simpsons’ fans from the moment the first episode aired in 1990. The Halloween episodes have become an annual treat despite not appearing at the same time each year and not airing at all in the show’s first year. The annual episode - which numbers XXIV this year - has had some hilariously funny moments spoofing horror and sci-fi movies with the sardonic Simpson family wit. Selected, for this article, are ten of my favorite moments from the twenty four episodes (in order of appearance): by: David “Diabolical” Pantoja “The Raven” (episode I) This ‘Simpsons’ retelling of Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven” has stuck in my mind since I first saw it and likely was the reason for my eagerness to read Poe. Nothing beats the raven perched upon the pallid bust of Pallas rattling off “Eat my shorts”. Homer is the perfect narrator for this poem, as his unchecked anger perfectly matches the mood. “Dial Z for Zombie” (episode III) In this episode, whilst wearing the vinyl cover of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ as a hat and reciting from a found grimoire, Bart resurrects the dead. Soon zombies overrun Springfield, in classic Romero style, seeking brains. The talking zombies provide some ghoulishly funny jokes and visuals.
“The Devil and Homer Simpson” (episode IV) Homer’s gluttony and unquenchable devotion to all things donut leads him to a dark deal with Satan (played by none other than Ned Flanders). Selling his soul for a donut, Homer attempts to outsmart the devil and, of course, fails. The best part of this story comes in the form of Homer’s absent minded buffoonery. “The Shinning” (episode V) Yes, “The Shinning;” you don’t want to get sued. ‘The Simpsons’ do an amazing job at spoofing Stanley Kubrick’s ‘The Shining.’ Homer’s anger again brings all the humor to this homage, especially when he realizes there is no beer or T.V. “Time and Punishment” (episode V) “This is indeed a disturbing universe,” Maggie, with the voice of James Earl Jones, tells Homer as he travels through space and time with his toaster. With every jump back and forward in time, Homer wrecks havoc on the time line, changing the present. “Homer3” (episode VI) Patty and Selma are on the way and Homer needs a place to hide, so why not the third dimension? As family and friends attempt to save Homer from his own clumsy demise in the third dimension, Homer pokes fun at the cost of 3D graphics. I remember the ending of this story made me and my brother chuckle with amazement. “Treehouse of Horror XI” (opening) Anyone remember ‘The Munsters’? No? Well, look it up, as it was a fantastic show
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
about a family of monsters called the Munsters. ‘The Simpsons’ does what it does best and spoofs ‘The Munsters’ opening scene in their own opening couch gag. Unfortunately, I don’t think Springfield is as tolerant of monster Simpsons, or really the Simpsons in general, as the town folk in ‘The Munsters’ were of that family. “House of Whacks” (episode XII) In Kubrickesque fashion, Marge updates the house with the Ultrahouse CPU (voiced by Pierce Brosnan) - a reference to HAL 9000 from ‘2001: A Space Odyssey.’ The CPU develops the hots for Marge and, well, things get crazy quickly. The CPU is punished in the end for its murderous hijinks, a punishment no one should have to bear. “Reaper Madness” (episode XIV) Nothing says funny like a Benny Hill-style chase scene. Don’t know Benny Hill, eh? . . . look it up, it’s funny. Eventually the Simpsons kill Death and Homer foolishly dons his cloak, inheriting his power over life. Yeah, I know we have seen it done before, and this time ‘The Simpsons’ weren’t first, but Homer’s attempt to get out of the job is really where the humor is on this one. “Treehouse of Horror XXIV” (opening) Really? I don’t think there is even a need to explain why this one makes the list. The intro couch gag is a staple of ‘The Simpsons,’ but to have Guillermo Del Toro direct it makes this opening scene one of the best. It’s full of just about every sci-fi and horror reference a person could possibly count. The opening scene contains nods to previous “Treehouse of Horror” episodes and sports a Futurama character: ALL HAIL HYPNOTOAD!
Illustrations by: David “Diabolical” Pantoja
Illustrations by: David “Diabolical” Pantoja
All Hallow’s Read Back in 2010, Neil Gaiman proposed a new Halloween tradition - give someone a scary book: for kids, a scary book that they can handle and will enjoy; for grownups, a scary book they’ll love curling up with on the chilly autumn nights. This doesn’t replace any current Halloween celebrations; it just serves as a supplemental practice - and excellent excuse to share a good book. by: Alyssa “The Alluring Nightdemon” Nabors Participation in this new tradition has been widespread and all along the creative scale! Neverwear, the online store for official Neil Gaiman merchandise, held a bookmark art contest this year with entries from fans of adult age to as young as 6! If you search the #allhallowsread tag on twitter, you’ll see authors offering free peeks at their work and book giveaways from many different types of organizations. It’s a great way to celebrate the spookiness all month long, an opportunity to get kids excited about reading, and a chance to scare the pants off your friends with the help of a brilliant author! However, if you’re low on cash and can’t find anything good on sale at the secondhand book store, here are some ways to celebrate sans spending! •
Check out Project Gutenberg! They have a horror collection that includes Edgar Allan Poe, Bram Stoker, and Robert Louis Stevenson. You can download them as epub or Kindle files and email them to your friends!
• • • •
Use iTunes and Google Play to share links to free books like ‘The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes’ and works by Agatha Christie. Share links to author websites (like Neil Gaiman’s or Stephen King’s) for treats like clips of the authors reading their work and exclusive short stories Check out YouTube for readings of scary short stories by searching All Hallow’s Read. Write your own story and share it through a blog or social media site like Tumblr .
Another fun practice is to find some scary books for yourself and enjoy them all October long! Here are some suggestions: • • • • • • • • •
‘The Haunting of Hill House’ by Shirley Jackson ‘Something Wicked This Way Comes’ by Ray Bradbury ‘Deadly Housewives’ by Christine Matthews ‘A Tale Dark and Grimm’ by Adam Gidwitz ‘IT’ by Stephen King ‘I Am Legend’ by Richard Matheson ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’ by Charlotte Perkins Gilman ‘The Telltale Heart’ by Edgar Allen Poe ‘Coraline’ by Neil Gaiman
This is a great time of year to visit your local library! Ask if they utilize any programs like OverDrive Media or OneClick, services that allow you to check out eBooks and audiobooks straight to your mobile devices or laptop. Happy Reading, and Happy Halloween!
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
7 Reasons to Love Fall Disclaimer: I don’t enjoy the end of summer, I just love fall. And you might, too, if you paid attention to the 7 things in this list rather than the fact that summer is over. This is fall people, this is exciting. by Palls “The Pixi“ Pillutla I have the same argument with my friends and family every year: they just don’t get how I can be excited about autumn. “It’s depressing.” “Summer’s over, how can anyone be happy about that?” “You’re stupid. Fall is stupid.”
The flavors are bomb dot com
There is nothing better than pumpkin spice or apple pie flavored everything. The first pumpkin spice latte of the season warms my soul. It makes my taste buds tango and my tummy break dance. Fall flavors remedy Season Affective Disorder because they are reminiscent of all wonderful things autumn. I wait all year for the apple cider muffin from my corner bakery to be in season and delight my palate. While winter flavors are also quite delectable, fall comes first and therefore excites not only our lovely fall sentiments, but also rouses our anticipation for the winter.
The leaves are crunchier than the Captain’s cereal.
Maybe I will just always be seven years old, but when I walk through a bunch of fallen leaves, my body starts mass producing endorphins. I literally go out of my way to stomp through leaves. I go to college in the city, but my home is in the suburbs of New Jersey. I for one, deliberately go home more often in the fall just to enjoy the crunchiness of autumn in suburbia.
forget the small cute children in furry costumes. As if small children weren’t cute enough, we go ahead and put them in costumes and have them ring doorbells asking for candy. Damn, Halloween rocks.
Big sweaters and hugging.
Fall is the time of year where people start wearing comfy, oversized sweaters. If you’ve never hugged anyone wearing a big sweater before, you should get on that this fall (quite literally, actually). There is nothing comfier and more warming than wearing a big sweater and hugging someone in another big sweater. Trust me. Try it this season.
Temperate weather = increase in wardrobe options.
Just so much damn pie.
Autumn is when you can still wear your warm weather clothing, but with added spice (pumpkin spice, if you will). You can layer your shirts and wear light jackets. You can wear the same five tops at least ten different ways. Plus, you get to bring out the boots. Let’s face it, all outfits look better with boots. Also, cardigans. Everyone looks better in a cardigan. It doesn’t matter if you celebrate or acknowledge Thanksgiving. This time of year truly brings families together. The
Whether you enjoy it or not, or celebrate it or not, I think you can find something to love about Halloween. There’s all the candy, for starters. So much candy. Even if you don’t go trick-or-treating, the candy is in stores and it’s on sale! There is also the fun of dressing up, going to Halloween parties, and all kinds of scary goodness. Don’t
spirit is in the air for the entire month of November and everyone is just genuinely happier. We are all well over our Seasonal Affective Disorders and now just focus all of our energies on loving each other and being extra kind to the people around us. I don’t think there is a more beautiful time of year.
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
Illustrations by Kenza “Soul-eater“ Samlali
Talking About Fear
With Charlie McDonnell and Me
It’s time to carve those pumpkins and tell spooky stories about what scares us most. I’m not talking about darkness or spiders or people with really sweaty hands. No, those fears are tangible, and in their realness, they can be tamed, cornered, and made smaller with a flick of a light switch or a fly swatter. The thrill of a haunted house or a roller coaster is a valid one, but not as terrifyingly puke-your-guts-out scary as the real villains threatening to spark fear into your Halloween. Who are those villains? And why are they making my chocolate taste so bitter? by Kaya “Medusa” Raven In early November 2012, YouTuber Charlie McDonnell uploaded a video titled “I’m Scared.” In this video, Charlie bravely and eloquently spoke about the fear that plagued him: the fear of failure. He told his viewers that he was so scared to disappoint them—so afraid to let anyone down—that he was simply stuck in a rut where he found himself “terrified to create.” He says bluntly that, like everyone, he wants people to like him, and when he thinks about making a new video, he fears that “maybe [his viewers] won’t like it, and then, by extension, [they] won’t like [him].” The response to this video was loud and lasting. Other YouTubers, from Charlie’s friends to first-time vloggers, began to make video responses affirming Charlie’s fears, telling him that he was not alone, and making it clear that this fear is a universal one. The true monster under the bed is finding out we have failed those who love us and let others down. We all want to be loved. We all want to be successful and happy and live up to our potential with a resounding bang and a climactic ah-ha moment. We all fear looking stupid, falling on our faces, and being too ashamed or embarrassed to get up again. And sometimes we have no idea that we’re not alone. Sparked by Charlie’s four-minute video, there arose a discussion of fear, failure, and what it is to be human. We forget that, even though we are all different, unique beings, we all share the same human reactions and emotions. The more people who commented on Charlie’s videos and responded with clips of their own, the more it became evident that this type of failure haunts us all. And if we know this — if we can identify that it’s unrealistic to believe we will succeed at everything 100% of the time, that it’s okay to make mistakes — then we can move past it. So often we, like Charlie, shut down when we are under pressure: “[we] run and [we] don’t do anything at all.” But if we are able to take a deep breath and tell ourselves it’s going to be okay, then we can create something wonderful. Charlie addressed his
Illustrations by Mayela “The Malevolant Ghoul“ Gutierrez
fears and by doing this, he paved the way for others to follow in his footsteps. People began talking about their fear to create and their fear of joining in, and in the process, perhaps subconsciously, they did just that. In his response to Charlie’s video, Michael Aranda stated that “bluntly acknowledging [the things that scare us] strip away their power,” and I feel like this is exactly what happened. Once the fear has a name and a long comment thread following it, then it isn’t scary anymore. Once we are able to quantify, define, and express what scares us, the scariness begins to slip away, simply because it’s no longer bottled up inside. Being alone in our fear is half of what scares us, and once we know there are others who feel the same way or will be there for us if we’re still scared, then we can face our fears and move on. And so, this Halloween, let’s celebrate with a bowl of candy corn and a nice, long, healthy conversation about our fear of failure. Remember that no matter how alone you feel, someone else has the same ghosts and monsters haunting them, too.
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Hannibal Fandom Making Cannibalism Chic Since 1981 Cannibalism isn’t a pretty subject, especially when it comes to humans. People eating other people never sits well, unless it’s a zombie eating a person – and then said zombie meets a bullet or sharp instrument of decapitation. In this more realistic case, however, how is it that a show about a sly cannibal has amassed such a huge following after only a thirteen-episode season? by: Jason “Satyr“ Stack
Illustrations by Vaiki “Vicious Vampi” Tress
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
In 1981, Thomas Harris’s psychological crime novel ‘Red Dragon’ hit shelves, introducing readers to the hellishly brilliant and incarcerated cannibalistic psychiatrist Hannibal Lecter. ‘Red Dragon’ was followed shortly by ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ and ‘Hannibal’ before ‘Hannibal Rising’, a prequel, hit shelves in the mid-2000s. The novels caught the attention of Hollywood, which lead to the five overall faithful film adaptations, starting with ‘Manhunter’ in 1986. Directed by Michael Mann, the film followed Will Graham’s (William Petersen of ‘CSI’ fame) investigation of a killer nicknamed The Tooth Fairy because of dental imprints found on his victims. Graham, an FBI profiler, utilizes the skill set of Dr. Lecktor (Brian Cox). It was a decent adaptation, but when
Entertainment Jonathan Demme’s adaptation to the psychological drama. of ‘Silence of the Lambs’ hit After ‘Hannibal Rising’, intertheaters in 1991, it was pushed est petered out until, that aside. is, Bryan Fuller of ‘Pushing Demme’s film followed Daisies’, ‘Dead Like Me’, and Clarice Starling’s (Jodie Foster) ‘Wonderfalls’ fame decided high-profile investigation of to bring Hannibal to the small Jame Gumb (Ted Levine), betscreen. And that’s when the ter known as Buffalo Bill for fandom took off. his fixation on kidnapping and Fuller initially got the idea skinning women to make a when he was on a flight with woman suit. The incarcerated Katie O’Connell, the CEO of Dr. Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) Gaumont TV, a branch of provided his assistance, but Gaumont, the French film comwith a quid pro quo clause for pany that is also the first and the consultations, and broke oldest continually operating out of the mental institution film company. Their conversaby the end of the novel and tion was something along these film. Ridley Scott’s 2001 film lines: “Bryan, I’ve secured ‘Hannibal’ catches up with the rights to Hannibal Lecter. both Starling (now played by Do you think there’s a show Julianne Moore) and Lecter there?” “Absolutely there’s a (Hopkins once again) ten years show. … Do you have the rights later, as Hannibal is targeted to the Will Graham character?” by Mason Verger (an unrec“Yes.” “That’s your show.” So ognizable Gary Oldman), a Bryan proceeded to make his former - now disfigured and pitch, and in his words, “It was wheelchair-bound - patient Kismet.” of Lecter’s. In 2002, another After the show, an appropriadaptation of ‘Red Dragon’ ately titled modernized prequel hit screens, helmed by Brett to ‘Red Dragon’ with Hugh Ratner and starring Ed Norton Dancy as Will Graham and as Will Graham and Ralph Mads Mikkelsen as Hannibal Fiennes as Francis Dolarhyde, Lecter, hit screens in April the Tooth 2013, fans Fairy. Hopkins flocked to it As the again reprised and the fanepisodes his role as dom bloomed the incarcerovernight. continued, ated Lecter For twelve the fans fell in – because, straight really, who weeks, fans love with the else would be eagerly ate up dark yet Fullerable to fill his new epishoes? The sodes, which esque color origin story, followed palate, the ‘Hannibal Graham, Rising’, with Lecter, and implied tones Gaspard Ulliel the FBI BAU of cannibalism, as a young team lead by Hannibal, Jack Crawford and the death hit theaters (Laurence tableaus in 2007 to Fishburne) unfavorable with titles reviews. inspired by Overall, the novels and films French cuisine, like “Apéritif,” dealt more with the perverse “Amuse-Bouche,” and “Sorbet.” nature of the antagonists As the episodes continued, the rather than Lecter’s canfans fell in love with the dark nibalistic nature, in addition yet Fuller-esque color palate,
the implied tones of cannibal(mainly Facebook, Twitter, and ism, and the death tableaus. Tumblr) played along with the (Yes, it’s a crime drama with a fans, coming up with equally cannibal; there’s bound to be punny tags, even playing gore of one kind or another.) around with the Tumblrs of The fan frenzy other shows, intensified like ‘The flower towards the Blacklist,’ crowns end of May ‘Parks and 2013 as NBC, Recreation,’ have gone the US netand ‘Doctor a long way, work that airs Who.’ The ‘Hannibal’, Tumblr appearing on held off for a has also the heads of few weeks on reblogged renewing it some great cast members for a second fan art, as in Twitter thirteen-epiwell. As the sode season, season ended pictures which they and San Diego eventually Comic Con did. arrived, the fans flocked to But how can there be a fan‘Hannibal’-related panels and dom for a show that’s centered meet-ups, gifting the creators on a cannibalistic psychiatrist with flower crowns. The flower and the FBI BAU that concrowns have gone a long sults him? It’s easy to have a way, appearing on the heads fandom when the audience is of cast members in Twitter in on the uptake, enjoys puns, pictures. Even Bryan Fuller is and the more than occasional following along with fandom homosexual undertone. Oh, meme activity, responding to and when the creators have a question from a fan at the openly and equally embraced ‘Hannibal’ panel with, “What the fandom, too. Running with was it? Swiggity swag, I’m a the assumption that fans of stag,” to ecstatic cheers from the show are at least familiar the crowd. And last but not with Lecter’s, shall we say, least, Janice Poon, the woman predilections, they wonder at who creates all of the stomevery turn, “Is that piece of ach-churningly delicious real food people?” They tag Tumblr and fake food for the show, posts with apropos tags, like runs a blog where she reguthe hiatus between the first larly posts breakdowns of how and second seasons is now certain dishes were prepared. known as the “He-ATE-Us.” And If there’s one thing that considering how Hannibal has brings a crowd together, it’s oddly treated Will as a friend, cannibalism. Well, a show you really don’t have to look about cannibalism with a dim much further for undertones. yet lush color palate, superb As for the creators embracset design, and killer cuisine, ing the fandom, they’ve been that is. So dip your toe in at doing it from the start. At your own risk, but also be South By Southwest, promoprepared to tuck in because tion for ‘Hannibal’ kicked off it’s not nice to be rude to a with a food truck with such judgmental cannibal. Bon menu categories as “Terror appétit! Tacos,” “Ground Up Chuck,” “Killer Sliders,” “Loin Links,” and “Fingerling Fries.” This continued online as the show’s official social media pages
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Why I Hate Horror Movies Once again we’ve reached that time of year when we’re all supposed to delight in the frightful and when horror movies become even more popular than usual. To be honest, I really don’t understand the obsession. by Lucy “The Lovable Psyco“ Pegg I don’t like horror films. At all. There is literally nothing about the character development take priority over scare attempts. genre that appeals in the slightest. To me, the idea of watching a The sub-genre of horror I understand the least is torture-porn, movie that has deliberately been designed to freak out its audience like the ‘Saw’ movies. Friends have described to me the scalpis just nonsensical. Do you people want to ing scene multiple times, but no amount have nightmares? of persuasion has ever made me want to If there was Admittedly, my experience of the genre watch the clip on YouTube - which used a genuinely is limited, and I have very wimpy tendento be the “cool” thing to do in high school. cies, to say the least. To this day, I find the It’s just sick, and completely and utterly good narrative scene in ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ where messed up. Without wanting to offend anyto accompany the the Phantom stalks Christine to her father’s one, isn’t the kind of person who can watch grave really creepy. There is a certain epianother human go through intense physiscare-factor, I might sode of ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ (“Killed cal pain as a form of entertainment usually be persuaded to By Death”, if you were wondering) that I seen as some form of psychopath? It might have still never seen in its entirety because be fictional but I’d argue there’s still someconsider the film the first fifteen minutes scared me so much thing very wrong with that. worth watching. I had to turn it off. Wanting to support So until someone convinces me otherDaniel Radcliffe post-Potter, I actually went wise, I think I’ll remain the girl at sleepovers to see ‘The Woman in Black’ at the cinema. who annoys everyone because she doesn’t Even though I already knew exactly what happened, I spent at least want to watch scary movies. Romantic comedies still seem like a a third of the film with my coat pulled up over my head, whisper- far saner option. ing ‘The Big Bang Theory’ theme tune to myself. To put it mildly, I haven’t had great experiences with it all. But despite that, I still fail to see why so many people love horror films. I can’t see that it’s like the fear you might have before skydiving or going on a rollercoaster, which is then compensated for with an adrenaline rush and a burst of endorphins. Perhaps there’s a similar increase in tension, but there’s no release. Maybe I could understand if these films had good storylines to compensate, but whenever I’ve heard friends talk about plots, they seem laughable. If there was a genuinely good narrative to accompany the scarefactor, I might be persuaded to consider the film worth watching - though I still don’t see why we can’t have the story without the terror. As I said before, I love ‘Buffy’, which has many of the trappings of a horror movie, but also lets the programme’s values and
Illustrations by Mayela “The Malevolant Ghoul“ Gutierrez
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
The Sound of Horror As the season changes and we find ourselves facing long cold nights with balding trees near bereft of their bright foliage, it seems a perfect time for some scary tales to get the blood pumping. Too busy to sit down with a nice Lovecraftian tale about life under the sea? Perhaps carrying around large tomes full of dark and strange markings is too much trouble? No problem! I have taken the time to gather here some podcasts that might literally grab your interest. Go get your phone, iPod, or whatever device you prefer and cue up some tales from these spooky podcasts.
fee for the complete episodes, which run around three hours. Drabblecast The fiction of this podcast is more strange than horrible. Norm Sherman hosts this strange podcast that offers feature stories of a reasonable length, as well as Drabbles. Drabbles are short stories of around 100 words which, if we didn’t mention it, are strange. How can you tell a story in 100 words? The Drabblecast, like the other podcasts listed here, has a large back catalog of episodes released on a weekly basis.
No Sleep Podcast The stories on the No Sleep Podcast are taken from postings on the No Sleep subreddit. David Cummings hosts this frightening podcast full of first-person stories that are reminiscent of urban legends and the stories we told each other as children when we still knew better than to discount the danger of the thing in the closet. This podcast is offered every two weeks, and sometimes bonus episodes are added. The first two seasons are available for free, and the third season offers a few free stories from each episode with a small
It is that time of year again: the leaves start changing colors, Halloween is just around the corner, and quite a few blockbuster films are due to be released. by Jacob Lambrecht “Will humanity be able to defend itself?” Summer and fall are the blockbuster seasons! As the holidays begin, there are quite a few big-name films scheduled to be released. Here is a quick guide to some of this fall’s more noteworthy films. ‘Gravity’ (October 4) I have not yet seen this movie, but with an impressive critic rating of 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, this movie has got to be good. Following a space disaster, a medical engineer turned-astronaut (Sandra Bullock) and veteran astronaut (George Clooney) are set adrift in space and must work together to survive the aftermath. And with Alfonso Cuarón — who directed ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’ (one of my favorite Harry Potter movies) and the highly acclaimed ‘Children of Men’ — back in the director’s chair, this movie is definitely a watch!
By David “Diabolical” Pantoja Pseudopod This weekly horror-themed podcast has been around for quite a while and sports an archive that reaches as far back as 2006. Alasdair Stuart is the friendly - perhaps too friendly - and well spoken host of this podcast, opening and ending each week with a short address to the listeners. I’m not sure if Stuart is to be trusted, but the quality of the podcast is. Pseudopod pays its writers for their stories and has a number of talented narrators who bring every story to frightening life. If you need a horror fix, you have to listen to this podcast. Remember to pace yourself; you may get lost in the archives, and they have yet to find the last listeners they lost there.
Geeky Fall Flicks
by Kenza “Soul-eater“ Samlali
Perhaps horror isn’t your thing? I find that hard to believe, but there are alternatives for lovers of fiction who want to listen to interesting tales. Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine Star Ship Sofa Audio Science Fiction Magazine Escape Pod Science Fiction Podcast Pod Castle Fantasy Fiction Podcast
‘Ender’s Game’ (November 1) ‘Ender’s Game’ is one of my all-time favorite books. Now, 28 years since the book was published, we are finally getting a movie. Hardcore Ender fans have high hopes and Gavin Hood has recruited an all-star cast with Harrison Ford as Colonel Graff, Asa Butterfield as Ender Wiggin, and Abigail Breslin as Valentine Wiggin. Will humanity be able to defend itself from the “buggers” a second time around? Most of us already know the answer, but cannot wait to see the action on the big screen. ‘Thor: The Dark World’ (November 8) It is hard to tell if Nerdfighters are more excited for the latest ‘Thor’ installment because Thor is returning to defend the Earth or because Tom Hiddleston is reprising his role as Loki. Either way, I am excited
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Entertainment to see Asgard “faced with an enemy even Odin cannot withstand” (IMDB). Not to mention one of my favorite actors, Christopher Eccleston (‘Doctor Who’, ‘Heroes’) is playing the dark elf Malekith. ‘The Book Thief’ (November 15) It all started with ‘The Grave Digger’s Handbook’. Set during World War II, ‘The Book Thief’ follow Death narrating the story of Liesel, a young Jewish girl living in Nazi Germany with her adoptive German family. Like the title suggests, Liesel steals books whenever she can to find peace in her war-torn town and protect her family’s secrets. This is a brilliant book and I have high hopes for the adaptation of Zusak’s novel. ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ (November 22) Katniss and Peeta return to the Capitol for the 75th Hunger Games, in which living participants of the previous Hunger Games compete in a battle royale. But is surviving the Quarter Quell the only thing at stake? I am looking forward to Katniss’s character development, the new arena, and hoping the second book is adapted as well as the first film was.
by Maddie “Mad-eyed” Valley
Horror Games and Why We Love Them!
There’s no doubt that games like ‘Amnesia: The Dark Descent’ and ‘Slender: The Eight Pages’ are scary, horror-filled pieces of work, but why do we play these games if they terrify us so much? by Sarah “The Sadist” Mills The art of making a horror video game lies in the balancing of suspense, raw emotion, pure scariness, and enjoyment. These factors contribute to the immense popularity of horror genre video games. It has also meant the reawakening of the gameplay in classic “horror games,” such as the original ‘Resident Evil’ or ‘Dead Space’. These are not just “shoot em’ ups” with a creepy plot or setting; they engage with your emotions, and the core of the horror comes from inside the player’s own head. Games such as ‘Amnesia: The Dark Descent’, ‘Slender: The Eight Pages’, and ‘Outlast’ affect our psyche, and we create our own scares before the games give us the scare themselves. We scream, hyperventilate, and maybe wet ourselves a little bit. So if it does all of these things to us, why do we play them? When we’re scared our body’s “fight or flight” reaction is triggered. According to clinical psychologist David Rudd, “It’s nature’s way of protecting us”. When this reaction occurs while playing a video game, the brain knows there is no risk of really being harmed. Therefore, it experiences this adrenaline rush as enjoyable, Rudd explains. The key
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
to enjoying such thrills lies in knowing how to properly gauge the risk of harm. The real-life risk of harm is non-existent for those with the controller, yet we project on to our characters and experience the fear just as intensely. The next time your parents tell you to stop wasting time playing these terrifying games, you can also let them know about the evolutionary service that such fear responses can provide. According
So try telling your parents that ‘Slender’ is teaching you about taking risks on the road to self-preservation … they’ll totally buy it. to environmental psychologist Frank McAndrew at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill, when we place ourselves in scary
By Katherine “Firestarter” Taylor
situations, we are learning! “We’re motivated to seek out this kind of stimulation to explore new possibilities, to find new sources of food, better places to live and good allies,” McAndrew said. When we expose ourselves to situations where we might be scared, it is in order to learn about our surroundings and hopefully find something beneficial to our well-being. So which game should you pick up to practice your evolutionary skills? Let’s take a look at the game that has joined the YouTube pantheon of guaranteed crowd pleasers, ‘Slender: The Eight Pages’. Originally conceived in a thread devoted to creating fake paranormal photos on the Something Awful Forums, The Slender Man was their most convincing creation. Hadley/Parsec Production continued the character of a slim man in a black suit with a featureless white face and long, stretched arms and legs. He appeared in the background of black and white photos shortly before tragedies and is said to have a particular penchant for eating children. ‘Slender: The Eight Pages’ places the player in the middle of a park searching for eight pieces of paper scattered throughout the dark, heavily forested park. The game is classed as “survival horror” because in order to survive, you must find all eight
pages without being captured by the Slender Man (who stalks you in the darkness, appearing when you look behind yourself). Just like McAndrew’s statement about seeking out stimulation in order to explore new possibilities, the player in ‘Slender: The Eight Pages” is forced to trek through this dark forest armed with a flashlight with limited battery life all in hopes of finding those eight precious pages. So try telling your parents that ‘Slender’ is teaching you about taking risks on the road to self-preservation … they’ll totally buy it. As alluded to earlier, ‘Slender: The Eight Pages’ has become a staple of YouTube gaming videos. When you type “Slender Let’s Play” into the YouTube search bar, YouTube returns “about 485,000 results”. These videos often feature a face cam to show the players’ reactions to being surprised by the Slender Man’s appearances. Suddenly, this horror game is transformed into a comedy when the player becomes a viewer. We enjoy witnessing this other player be surprised and terrified instead of ourselves. It’s what psychologists would call the “superiority theory”. We find it so funny to watch these YouTubers lose their composure because we are glad it isn’t happening to us. What remains to be seen is what lengths horror video games will have to go to in order to keep providing gamers with the thrills and scares they need. Horror games could go the road of games like the ‘Resident Evil’ franchise, emphasizing action over suspense to assure greater market performance. However, they could take a lesson from ‘Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs’ and target our psyche, building suspense and finding new plots that expose our vulnerabilities. In the end, all consumers want is a good story and plenty of scares … BOO!
A Few Horror Games to check out • • • • • • • • • •
Resident Evil Series Silent Hill Series The Suffering Clock Tower Series Amnesia: The Dark Descent Slender: The Eight Pages Outlast Condemened Series Dead Space Series F.E.A.R.
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
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7 Tips for Being a Good Volunteer Whether it be for a school club or even for VidCon, 1. Be on time. Although you are giving up your time, it is still important that you show that you are ready to work and volunteering is a great thing to do. It’s the perfect way help out. Arriving late wastes other volunteers’ or orgato give back to the community and also a great way to nizers’ time as they try to catch you up on all the things have a good time. Volunteering can range from working you need to know. This takes time away from actually, you at a community center festival to taking part in a dragon know, volunteering. boat team to raise awareness for a medical cause. It’s also a great way to make connections and learn new 2. Be respectful to everyone. In most cases, you don’t know a lot of the people at the event. This can be a little intimidating things. but the best thing to do is be respectful to anyone and everyby: Joie “The Jinxed“ Ling However, the above activities hang on the fact that you are a good volunteer. All volunteers should know some things before going to their event to ensure everyone has a great and enjoyable time.
one you meet. In return, people will come to respect you and will want to get to know you.
3. Be dependable. People are relying on you to come through with whatever you say you are going to do. Do your best to come through on all your obligations and promises. 4. Be enthusiastic and friendly. Speaking from experience, most volunteer events are all-day events that require people to wake up at “ungodly” hours on weekend mornings. Although you may be groggy and not even truly awake, you should be gregarious and fun to be around while you’re working. It’ll be a lot more fun for you, and people will take note of your enthusiasm, something that can come in handy when you need some recommendation letters. 5. Come prepared. This refers not only to what you take and wear to the event but also to the research you do beforehand. Before even deciding whether or not you want to volunteer, make sure you know what you are going to be doing at the event. That way, you can decide if you are comfortable or able to perform the tasks that will be given to you before you get there. Coming prepared also means you’ll know everything you’ll need to in advance, from whether you need to take a lunch to whether close-toed shoes are required. 6. Go above and beyond. If you see something that needs to be done, go ahead and do it. You’ll be a great help to everyone if you pick up the extra slack without even having to be asked. People will come to trust you more and give you more responsibility. (And of course with great responsibility comes great power. Wait, it’s the other way around?) 7. Have fun. The most important tip of all is, of course, to just have fun. Volunteering is when you make connections while being a made-of-awesome Nerdfighter. Enjoy every moment of it to ensure that you’ll come away with memories that will stay with you forever.
Images by: Joie “The Jinxed“ Ling
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
istory of Halloween What would become our Halloween are bits and pieces of various pagan holidays, Christian myths, historical happenstances, mass migrations, and Americanization. Written and Illustrated by Katherine “Firestarter” Taylor One of the most beloved holidays in America, and places around the world, Halloween has bridged generational gaps and is now enjoyed by people of all ages, little bit like Christmas. For kids from one to ninety-two, Jack-o-Lanterns, candy, costumes, trick-or-treats, ghost stories, tummy aches, and razorblade apples! (Wait … scratch that last one. It’s just an urban legend.) The history of Halloween is a long and complex tapestry of fact, legend, and recent history. So let’s get those knives out and carve this pumpkin! The earliest forms of Halloween can be traced back more 3,000 years to the Roman holiday of Lemuria and the Celtic holiday of Samhain. Lemuria (May 13) was when the ghosts of the dead could walk the streets and only offerings of beans and salted flour cakes would put them at ease. It was also the proper time to perform exorcism rites to rid yourself of malevolent spirits. On the other hand, Samhain (Oct 31) was the celebration of harvest, the end of summer, and the beginning of the “dark half” of the year. Celebrated with bonfires, animal sacrifices, costumes, and dancing, it was a time when the spirits of the dead could cross the “door” from the Otherworld. Families would often have feasts and have places set for their dead kinfolk. Halloween, of course, is sprinkled with wonderful and almost mystical symbols and rituals, some as recent as the 1960s and some as old as Sahmain and Lemuria themselves. Jack-O-Lantern was a lazy yet shrewd farmer who used a cross to trap the devil. The devil was in an apple tree, and when Jack noticed this, he placed crosses all around the tree. Jack agreed to let the devil go only if he agreed to never take his soul. Of course, Jack eventually died, and because he was far too sinful for heaven, he was barred from hell because of the
The Anglerfish | Issue 9 Oct 2013
deal. Jack asked the devil how he would see since he had no light, and the devil mockingly tossed him an ember from the flames of hell. So Jack hollowed out a turnip (pumpkins are not so plentiful in Europe) and put the ember inside. From then on, he was referred to “Jack of the Lanterns” or “Jack-O-Lantern.” So for All Hollow’s Eve, kids and parents alike would carve turnips (in Ireland and Scotland) -- and pumpkins with faces to mock death when in America -- and celebrate how Jack beat the devil. Trick-or-Treating, going from door to door for sweets, dates back to the Middle Ages when the act called “souling.” “Trickor-treat” has only been around for about eighty years since it first appeared in print during the 1920’s. Children and sometimes the poor would go from door to door on All Hallow’s Eve to beg for treats for the lost souls. Eventually this tradition of Souling would mix with another “holiday” in England: Guy Fawkes Day! Remember, remember the fifth of November! That’s when some jackass was hiding under the House of Lords with 38 barrels of gunpowder. He had planned to assassinate the royal family and nearly every nobleman in Great Britain. This helped solidify the prejudice against Catholics for the next 350 years in the U.K., but it did have one fun side effect. Only one year after his capture and execution, children took to dressing in masks and going from door to door threatening tricks if they were not given pennies. Then paraded through the streets burning effigies of Guy Fawkes. In the new world, because of the close proximity to Halloween, kids in America just had to take it to a whole new level, merging it with Halloween and resulting in “Black Halloween” in 1933. Nearly every major city in America had tens of thousands of dollars in damages from teenage boys. Costumes have a mixed history, like the
News history of the holiday itself. Some of the earliest references come from the Romans describing Celts dancing in costume around bonfires to honor their gods or important local heroes. This was because Samhain was the time of year to welcome the harvest and welcome death into the world (also known as winter). Costumes mainly stayed in the theaters until the 16th century, when street performers would go door to door performing street plays for food or money. Clashing with Guy Fawkes Day, and Americans’ way of making things their own, teenage boys would wear masks when doing their pranks and trouble making. After companies realized there was money to be made from Halloween, they began marketing Halloween products and costumes. Store-bought costumes really got started in the 1930s and 1940s. Unfortunately, many of these costumes were made of flammable paper … so that ended well. Now we have flame retardant rubbers! Witches, a classic and favorite modern Halloween costume, has its roots in being associated with evil back when the Catholic Church decided women should not be associated with power or hold any position in their new fledgling religion at some point after the Roman Empire pissed off every ancient hipster and made Christianity mainstream. This would be the first steps toward the downfall of priestesses and female practitioners for a long, long time! Witches were officially declared agents of the devil, and so normal kitchen and hearth items took on a sinister meaning. Brooms, caldrons, and even women’s country hats became signs of witches. Even house cats gained an evil reputation because they liked to hang out around the hearth by their witchy masters. Vampires and zombies used to be one in the same. During the Middle Ages, there was no handsome undead fellow articulately convincing you to let him suck your blood, but rather the mindless flesh eaters we call zombies today. Fear of the dead rising was so great that graveyards full of people with their heads cut off (postmortem) have been found all over Europe. Of course, the tamer way to ward off the angry dead was to leave spiced raisin-filled cakes outside your door. Vampires took on the lives they have now through modern literature and movies. Devils, usually feared, but around the days where people believed the dead could walk again, people would sometimes
dress up as devils to scare the ghosts away. Equally as such, the same reason people would dress up as ghosts. This just carried into the modern world. Mostly because bed sheets are the cheapest costume of all time! Candy took over soul cakes sometime in the early 20th century. A woman wrote to a magazine about how she offered caramel apples and popcorn balls to the kids in her neighborhood, ebbing the usually trickery and vandalism. Parents took this up with gusto. Soon candy companies started mass producing Halloween candy like Mr. Goodbars, Mars Bars, Hershey, and more. Today, the list keeps growing and growing. Now, November 1, is national tummy ache day. Ghost stories exist all over the world, but when did the connection between ghost stories and Halloween start? Oddly enough, the Civil War. So many unclaimed bodies and unknown deaths, kind of warped Americans’ minds. Stories of wandering dead soldiers returning home popped up all over the place. Newspapers even began publishing some stories around Halloween each year. With the introduction of radio, these stories reached even further! Artists and mass media managed to link all things spooky with Halloween. Then the fun really begins. Urban legends naturally began to grow around Halloween, because each generation loves to add its own twist. The most famous of legends was the razorblade candy apple. Of course the rumors of poisoned candies spread quickly across America around the same time. However the part your parents and relatives tend to leave out is the poisoned and razorblade candies, were given to the children by their own families! That’s right; I got my eye on you, Uncle Frank! Halloween is ancient and new, religious, and secular, fun and fear. For adults and kids alike, with parades, parties, candy, costumes, and fun, it’s hard to imagine that people would hate or fear this holiday, but it does happen. It probably does not help Halloween’s case with the naughty adult parades in NYC’s the Village, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Just remember that Halloween is a fun time to mock death, and scare ourselves silly, gorge on candy, and just have a screaming good time.
Issue 9 Oct 2013 | The Anglerfish
Exercise is Terror! With this in mind, Reed Street Productions (RSP) decided to create the craziest obstacle course you could ever imagine. It is called the Run for Your Lives 5K Zombie Run, and it is sure to blow your mind -- if a zombie doesn’t eat it first. by: Eric “The Evil Chort“ Cole
First a little history. The RSP created the RFYL race in 2011 to help increase awareness of their sponsor at the time, Warwear, an athletic apparel company. The response to the race was crazy: more than 10,000 runners signed up to participate in the first race held at Camp Ramblewood near Baltimore in October 2011. Possibly realizing that they had a potentially awesome idea on their hands, RSP decided to branch out into other cities in 2012, and thus an awesome tradition was born! This year, the race is held in 17 different locations, in 23 states, and there is no reason for expansion to stop! Whether it is being held in Texas or California, Michigan or New England, the race combines the very best of what the nerd community enjoys: cosplay, good times with friends, and a rocking party at the end of the race called the Apocalypse Party. With that combination, this race’s potential is limitless. How does the race work though? • The race comprises two separate groups: Runners and Zombies.
illustration by: Hayley “Harpy“ Pike
23 The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
For a fee, ranging from $60 to $100 depending on when you register, runners may sign up for the race on the RFYL website: runforyourlives.com/
On race day, Runners will receive a belt with a designated number of flags on it. When the race begins, your mission is to get to the finish line with at least one flag to survive the Zombie Apocalypse!
Zombies can register for the race for $35 on the same website.
As a zombie, you may only stay in your designated zombie zone with your task being simple: Take as many flags as you can off of the runners!
Zombies come in two forms. Chaser Zombies who are able to run after runners to get their flags, if they believe themselves to be quick enough to do so, and Stumbler Zombies who work with a team as they slowly lumber after runners in order to get those tasty brains...oh, I mean flags!
Oh, and did I mention that runners must get away from these zombies while also navigating themselves through obstacles? Obstacles vary from race to race, but some of the more popular ones are a Blood Pit, where the pieces of failed runners lie; The Smokehouse, where you must avoid capture from zombies in pitch darkness, surrounded by smoke and electric shocks; and a giant maze where zombies can lie around any corner. The RFYL 5K Zombie Run is the perfect way for any nerd to make a lasting memory with a group of friends, while also getting some great exercise. And with Halloween right around the corner, it is the perfect way to celebrate this terrifying holiday with something equally terrifying: EXERCISE! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!
PS: The U.S. and The Internet They’re Watching You
With the revelation of the NSA unauthorized surveillance earlier this year, it’s beneficial to know exactly what kind of information you may be unintentionally sharing and who might be looking at it. by: Alyssa “The Alluring Nightdemon“ Nabors Every piece of data you send on the Internet is vulnerable. I’m not saying that your identity is going to be stolen because you bought something on Amazon yesterday, but even uploading photos from your phone to Facebook sends information you may not be aware of … and you never know who’s looking. What is metadata? Metadata is information attached to files that is not explicitly obvious. This can be the date and time a file was last modified, “tags” that allow services like Pandora to categorize similar songs, or even where a photo was taken or a call was placed. The National Security Agency has collected enough metadata to allegedly develop complex graphs depicting relationships between U.S. citizens, including their location at certain times. Why is this un-cool? It is your right to keep your data private. The motivation behind collecting this data is that if any person is determined to be a threat to national security (a potential target for the NSA), information about their connections, movements, and whereabouts will be easily available. While the ability to store information about the movements and communications of potential targets is useful to the NSA and other government agencies, they have been collecting vast amounts of data about people who will never be of any interest to intelligence organizations. That this information is being stored, with no transparency to know how, when and what sort of data is being collected, should be incredibly disquieting to everyone. But I have nothing to hide! With social media so prominent in our everyday lives, there are
fewer and fewer places where you’re not using your real name on the Internet. At this point, you don’t even expect online interactions to be that private, right? However, the information being stored is not information you are actively releasing. This data is being stored with a disconcerting lack of transparency, meaning that the way the government uses this information could be changed easily without your knowledge. What do you mean by “transparency”? The NSA is requisitioning large amounts of data from private companies, and no one knows about it. The only reason we know that they have been collecting this much data is the information Edward Snowden leaked earlier this year. We have little information on what kind of information they are collecting, how long they are keeping it, or how they are using it. That means that if anything changes, we won’t know about it. How does this affect the Internet? By collecting information from non-government companies like social media conglomerates, mobile companies, and Internet service providers, these agencies are detracting from the security of any agreements we make with these companies. The supposedly remote possibility of the U.S. becoming a “big brother” surveillance state becomes more realistic. Most importantly, when you lose control over your information, how likely are you to put it out there again? The creativity and networking that the Internet has allowed will certainly diminish.
What can we do? Spread awareness. Participate in movements like the Stop Watching Us Rally, that took place October 26 in Washington, D.C. Learn as much as you can about what information is being stored about you from various sources (both Internet and otherwise) and what is done with it. Above all, call for transparency. Don’t let these changes happen around us without our knowledge. We deserve to know because we deserve the opportunity to fight for our rights.
Illustrations by: David “Diabolical” Pantoja
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
The Other Side:
A Christian Perspective on Halloween
The worst time of the year has always been October. Even as a kid, I was pretty festive but when it came to the “Devil’s Holiday,” even having a pumpkin or two was strictly off limits. By: Ruth “Ruthless“ Tirado
Growing up, October was one of the most depressing months of the year. I would sit by the window and look six stories down to see various colorful costumes, bags full of sweets and a happy child with each of them. There was never really a rhyme or reason to it. I was only a child and it wasn’t as if I could rebel successfully against it. At the end of each October, as excited as I was to NOT go to school, I was disappointed that I would not be able to share in the festivities with my friends. I would be stuck by the window, watching everyone else below like Rapunzel in her tower. The most I could do was wait until my mother arrived home from work to give me candy. That was about as fun as it would get. Now, I won’t compare my mother to a witch in some bitter rant about how I was never allowed a Halloween experience.
Over time, I quickly learned why I was began visiting a church that made it their never allowed outside on Halloween. business, every October, to warn against Around that time of the year, there were as participating in “the Devil’s Holiday.” Week many tricks as there were treats. The one after week, everything said in Sunday time I was allowed outside to do my hair school and sermons was about Halloween’s at the salon, I was egged and my hair was pagan roots and the evils that were behind ruined. (I got a second free wash because every sugary sweet given on that day. my cousin worked at the salon and she At some point, I was like “I get it, saw it happen.) Then I got egged again by a Halloween=Bad. What else ya got?” I could group of teenage boys. I had to run home understand that as a Christian, it would be to escape. best not to take part in festivities with a As terrible as the outside world pagan origin, but what about Christmas or seemed as a child, Halloween became Easter? As innocent and Christ-related as my forbidden fruit. I wanted to dress up, those holidays seem, they also have pagan not be me for one origins. During day, and get free those times of the I looked forward year, that church candy because of it! I missed all the only talk to all the colorful would Halloween parties about Christ’s birth, costumes but at school and could death, and resurnot participate in rection but never didn’t look forward to any “remember about the holiday’s the endless sermons when’s” or recall a pagan origins. photo taken during (Eventually, we left about hellfire that one time of that church because and brimstone. the year. I could it was too far away never get perfect from us.) attendance because of it! Because I was Although I was forced to obey these often left alone during most of that day, I rules, I eventually came to adore my faith would dare to turn on the television and and became a Christian. However, I disindulge in Halloween movies. My favorites like the fact that churches will prefer one were the “Halloweentown” movies on the pagan holiday over another. If I’m celebratDisney Channel and “Scary Godmother” on ing Christmas, I will celebrate Halloween Cartoon Network. Only when I heard my as I please. But if I won’t celebrate either, doors unlocking did I immediately shut off then I refuse to give anyone else crap for the TV and resume my seated position at enjoying a day (or a month) of the year the window. over another day (or month) of the year. As As I entered my teen years, Halloween I’ve learned from my childhood, it doesn’t only got more depressing. My family solve anything; it only builds frustration.
25 The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
illustrations by: Katherine “Firestarter” Taylor
Taking Back The Night: Why We Shouldn’t Have to be Scared
Why are grown women scared of being alone in the dark? What can be done to fix the grievous problem gripping our world?
something happens, will the police officer ask if they’d been drinking or if they knew of the bad reputation of the neighborhood they were walking through while dressed as “Sassy Rick Grimes”? We need to stop teaching how not to be raped. We by Alyssa “The Alluring Nightdemon“ Nabors need to start teaching not to rape. Everyone needs to know how consent is defined -- there can be no grey We’re adults, so we shouldn’t be scared of the dark areas, there can be no mitigating factors. Rape while anymore, right? So tell me why 50 percent of the either attacker or victim is intoxicated is still rape. population feels they can’t walk alone after the Organizations like Take Back the Night and sun goes down. Tell me why walking from a SlutWalk were created to bring people together building to a car causes just a little more than to acknowledge this epidemic and work together half the world’s people to clutch their keys in to end it. Both groups use local gatherings to their fists. Tell me why one in four women raise awareness and call for better education is a victim of sexual assault. about and treatment of the issue. Let me tell you about one of my last The first Take Back the Night march nights in India on a business trip. I was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in was at a cafe only a few streets away October 1975, after the murder of Susan from the apartments where I was Alexander Speeth, a microbiologist who was staying. It was getting late, but the few stabbed to death while walking home alone. friends that hadn’t already left were In a 2010 article from the student newspaper engrossed in conversation. I got up to of Missouri University, Danica Pape, the coorgo home, and they said they’d walk with dinator of the university’s annual march had this me. But even though they got up from the to say about Take Back the Night’s founding: table, they took two steps and then contin“Women were told to stay inside their homes ued talking. I was so exasperated and tired and not go anywhere at night for their own safety. that I turned to go. The women responded by asking why the solution was When I got to the dark stairwell that led to focused on women. Restricting their movement, their the street, a man started following me downlife and their work responsibilities -- it just doesn’t stairs. My heart stopped in my chest. I had make sense. These women banded together and took no reason to assume this man meant me any to the streets to symbolize unity and united effort to harm, but I was also alone in an unfamiliar and reclaim their effort of movement.” unlit place. And the walk back to the apartSlutWalk, a much younger movement, started in ment made use of streets that were equally 2011. It comes under fire more regularly because of dark and empty. It made me completely furisome of its participants’ practice of dressing in lingeous, but I returned to wait impatiently for my rie or other scantily clad outfits while carrying signs friends to inch their way to the exit. that say “Clothes Are Not Consent.” If I were not a woman, I would’ve been able The parallel between SlutWalk outfits and to make the ten-minute walk home on my “sexy” Halloween costumes was noted by L.A. own without any worry. It would’ve been a Times writer Charlotte Allen, but in a 2011 artipleasant stroll. cle, she said that participants in the SlutWalk For at least the past couple of decades, the are being unrealistic -- that with their clothgeneral population expects a rise in crime, ing, they are sending “mixed signals” to men. especially violent crimes such as assault, dur“The SlutWalk feminists are in denial of a ing Halloween, a time of year when people reality that is perfectly obvious to both the become increasingly concerned for their women who favor “sexy” for Halloween safety -- not just the safety of trick-or-treatparties and (although perhaps not coners. While there is no statistical correlation sciously) the SlutWalkers themselves. The with this popular perception, it is true that on reality is that men’s sexual responses are Halloween, more people are out -- at night. highly susceptible to visual stimuli, and Women are more conscious of how vulnerwomen, who are also sexual beings, like able they are during Halloween, especially to generate those stimuli by displayin combination with the common practice ing as much of their attractive selves Vector from all-free-download.com of wearing overtly sexualized costumes. If as social mores or their own personal
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
27 The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
Spooky Days Around the World
Even though the theme of this issue of The Anglerfish is inspired by the Western holiday of Halloween (or as it was originally known, All Hallow’s Eve), we know that many places around the world don’t celebrate the holiday. Here are some of the other holidays from around the world concerning the spirit world, the souls of the dead, and the battle between darkness and light. by Alyssa “The Alluring Nightdemon“ Nabors
Obon, the Festival of Lanterns A Buddhist holiday celebrated mostly in Japan, Obon is believed to be the time of year that ancestors return to this world to visit their relatives. It is observed for three days in mid-July or August, depending on whether the region uses the solar or lunar calendar. During the festival, people light lanterns and hang them in front of their houses to guide ancestors’ spirits. They visit and clean graves and make offerings of food at temples and household altars. At the end of the festival, they send lanterns floating down the river to guide the spirits back to the spirit world. There was always a festival on my island for Obon but I usually missed it with traveling. Also, I remember one year we were going to the city for a conference and were just shocked at how crazy the traffic was to get to the island (because everyone from the city was coming home for the festival). It was nuts! The end of the festival always had fireworks, which was fun. Oh, and one year after Bon, we saw a few of the little boats, which had washed back up on the shore. Most had fruit in them.
- Amanda Collyer, JET Programme Participant
Ilustration by Vicious Vampi Tress
moral codes permit...Rape is a criminal act, and it is a crime most men won’t commit regardless of how short a girl’s skirt is or how lovely her legs. But the fact that rapists tend to target young women rather than grandmotherly types suggests that in the real rape culture (in contrast to the imaginary rape culture of some feminist ideology), the fauxhos of Halloween and their SlutWalker counterparts marching in their underwear — like a man walking at night with a bulging wallet — should be careful about where they flash their treasure.” However, this is exactly the attitude that SlutWalk attempts to combat; the rapist’s motivation is irrelevant. What the victim was wearing is irrelevant. Of course some women like to wear revealing clothes, and Halloween is no exception; some of them choose their costume or outfit with the intent to attract attention. This does not mean that they are in any way obligated to the people whose attention they attract. This is also fairly ageist, as women of all ages are victims of sexual assault. It’s also unfair to men, as it conforms to the theory that men cannot help themselves once they’ve been stimulated by the sight of a woman’s body -- that if a woman is going to “display her attractive self,” she had better be prepared in case of one of the men she’s around happens to be a rapist. SlutWalk and Take Back the Night are striving for is equality Vector from all-free-download.com in expectations of safety, which all of us should be striving for. A man going shirtless and claiming his costume to be Jacob from Twilight would have no worries about getting home safely. A woman, regardless of the night of year or the clothes on her body, should have the same expectations. Telling women how to dress and how to keep themselves safe does nothing to alleviate this problem. Even the most fit, most modestly dressed woman can be assaulted. So we move in groups, we move in the daylight, and we are still attacked, on Halloween and on every other day of the year. The double standard of safety is unacceptable. And we must not stand for it any longer.
News ...everyone in Estonia knows this one sentence from the song, [is the line] that goes like this: “Let me in. My toes are freezing off.” The song is longer though, but that’s just everyone’s favorite line.
Ilustration by Vicious Vampi Tress
Mardipäev (St. Martin’s Day) In Estonia, Mardipäev is celebrated on November 10, originally thought to be a day when visitation from ancestral spirits was possible. Today, on the evening before the holiday, people follow the tradition of disguising oneself and going from neighbor to neighbor, singing and reciting poems in return for sweets. Afterward, the performers, called Marts, wish the neighbor family a good harvest season and various other kinds of good fortune. Much like Halloween in the U.S., this tradition has been largely continued by younger people. Another holiday, Kadripäev (St. Catherine’s Day), is celebrated on November 25 in a similar way, with some distinct differences. The big difference is the outfits worn on both days. On Mardipäev, you are supposed to dress up in dark attire (black, grey, dark brown, darker the better), worn out old clothing, big, long coats, overbearing woolly hats, faces stained with dirt, ash, or just messy makeup, fake beards -- the traditional look of a Mardisant. Basically look like a hobo. Like seriously, that is what “sant” (at the end of the name Mardisant) means: a beggar. You go door to door looking like a shady person, usually in groups (no one goes alone), and first you knock and then start singing behind the door and hope the family you are visiting lets you in. The song is basically about you begging the family to let you in. Probably the most important and fun part, because everyone in Estonia knows this one sentence from the song, [is the line] that goes like this: “Let me in. My toes are freezing off.” The song is longer though, but that’s just everyone’s favorite line. When inside, it is tradition to entertain the
family a bit, like singing [a song] you wrote or reciting poems and bringing good blessings to the family (sometimes throwing grain on the floor when giving blessings, but no one does that anymore, cause some people get mad when you throw stuff on the floor and they gotta clean it up). And on Kadripäev basically everything is the same. You do the same things, but the costume you wear is the complete opposite: you have to wear as much white as possible. The color of Kadripäev is definitely white. The outfit is usually a long old white dress or skirt, long white scarves, gloves, and definitely a beautiful old (usually borrowed from grandmothers) headscarf or shawl, wrapped around your head, protecting you from the cold. You can wear makeup, but the more ghost-like the better (like a pale face and red lips), but a more natural look is preferred. Basically, the point is to look as fair and feminine as possible (the opposite of Mardipäev). When all the singing and blessing is done, the family gives the Marts or Kadris sweets (similar to Halloween).
-Vaiki Tress, Anglerfish Staff
Dia De Los Muertos Celebrated over three days from October 31 to November 1, Dia de los Muertos is a blend of European and Aztec traditions. Longerlasting celebrations from pre-colonial times were replaced with the Catholic All Saints’ and All Souls’ days. At the beginning of the festivities, spirits are invited to visit their relatives at altars with their favorite foods as well as photographs and memorabilia. The most iconic elements of these holidays are calaveras, artistic representations of skeletons and skulls used as decorations, and especially calaveras de azucar, sugar skulls, which are popular treats during the festival.
Photo by Mayela “The Malevolant Ghoul“ Gutierrez
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
News You know, Dia de los Muertos is officially in November 1 and 2, but it has sort of merged with Halloween, and people celebrate from the 31. It’s funny how the holidays coexist. When I was little, I remember setting up an altar in the house and then dressing up and going trick or treating the same day. Though trick or treating is also a little different, because there isn’t really the concept of tricks to be played if you don’t get candy. Kids go door to door asking for their “calaverita,” though it doesn’t literally mean a skull. It can be candy, or even money sometimes.
I don’t think most of us celebrate for it. Normally, it happened around lunar June 14/15. People believed that the door of the hell would be open on that day and all the ghosts would come out. Some of them have their own family but some do not, so they just wander around to find things to eat. In Chengdu, I’ve seen people celebrate this festival. They light up candles along the road and some of them may prepare some food for the “ghost.”
-Shasha Zhang, Software Developer
- Mayela Gutierrez, Anglerfish Staff
Ilustration by Vicious Vampi Tress
Diwali, the Festival of Lights Originally a Hindu celebrated of the end of the Harvest season, Diwali is now celebrated all over India by people of many different religions in October or November each year. While the traditions vary from region to region, one constant is the lighting of lamps, and the commemoration of some story of triumph of good over evil. During the five days of Diwali, people take part in a ritual cleaning and decorating of their homes, prayers, feasts, fireworks, and family gatherings. Photo by Mayela “The Malevolant Ghoul“ Gutierrez
Yu Lan, the Hungry Ghost Festival The seventh month of the lunar calendar is believed to be the time when restless spirits roam the earth. On the fifteenth day of this month, the Chinese celebrate Yu Lan, or the Hungry Ghost Festival. People make food offerings, specifically to appease ghosts whose families did not give them a proper send off. They also hold entertainments to please the ghosts. These entertainments consist mostly of musical performances, some classical operas and some more modern pop songs, usually accompanied by dancing. People also burn fake money and paper objects (like paper televisions or cars) as gifts to the ghosts.
29 The Anglerfish | Issue 9 October 2013
In general, Diwali is celebrated as a new beginning! It is to dispel darkness from your life. In North India, Diwali celebrates the return of Lord Rama with his wife Sita and brother Lakshmana from a fourteen-year exile and a war in which he vanquished the demon king Ravana. The legend goes that people lit oil lamps all along the way to light the royal family’s path in the darkness. And yes, it does commemorate triumph of good over evil. For kids, it’s very special! I have fond memories of Diwali! As a kid, my parents bought me new clothes for Diwali. Also, I used to draw pretty designs with coloured powder (Rangoli) in front of the house in Diwali. It is a tradition in India. Also, in Diwali, delicious sweet and savoury dishes are cooked at home.
-Anuja Kelkar, Software Developer
Art & Literature
The Empty Office I had been staring at this code for a length of time that felt like half an eternity, therefore I knew only a few minutes could have passed. I stood up and stretched, thinking I would take a bathroom break, maybe get myself a cup of tea from the breakroom, anything to kill a few minutes away from my desk. by Alyssa Nabors As I stepped into the maze of cubicle walls, navigating the narrow corridors mindlessly, my thoughts wandered to the usual mundane subjects- what did I need from the grocery store, could I go another day without doing any laundry, should I make myself go to the gym or maybe I could skip if I made a salad for dinner. I didn’t realize until I was washing my hands, opening the door to the ladies room… The timers that put the lights out unless someone tripped the motion sensor, they shouldn’t have been activated until at least after five. By five I’d have tossed my briefcase into the backseat and be joyfully speeding toward almost certain snail-paced traffic jams but at least no more work. I’m not proud of my clock-watcher tendencies, but I’d worked late before and I had no desire to be in the office once those timers started working. Or rather, failing to work. I couldn’t completely suppress a grumbling, exasperated noise from snorting itself out my nose. It was probably that self-righteous eco-yuppie in accounting, she was always pushing for stuff like the timers or special toilets that had one handle for liquid waste and another for solid and all sorts of nonsense. Good, yes, I’ll think about Joann in accounting and how much she pisses me off, I said to myself, and not about the timers, and the lights that my movement never turns on, damned ancient motion sensors. But as I passed the break room, I had to pause and walk over to the slim window in the corner. The view was mostly overgrown shrubbery, but it was fairly plain that the sun had gone. The single lamppost visible through the branches, seeming to sense it had an audience, gave a dramatic flicker and went out. The cluster of IT cubes had never seemed so far away, the cold building so labyrinthine, and I such a childish coward. I berated
myself inwardly, so you were working so hard you lost track of time? Good! Stop acting like a five year old too afraid to look under their bed. It’s a god damned office building and you have to have a passcode to get in, even the velociraptors from Jurassic Park would have to stand there trying different combinations till they would be able to creepily twist the handles open. I swallowed hard and tried to force myself to walk like a normal human being, what if the SVP was working late as well? I’d better look like someone with a purpose, not like someone who’d fallen asleep at their desk and weren’t sure where they were. The office layout seemed littered with blind corners and unexpected staircases, I knew if someone came the other way unexpectedly I’d shriek and scare the both of us (and probably the cleaning crew) half to death. But the cubicles I passed were empty, the offices dark, the hallways abandoned. It was often quiet during the day but now the silence rang painfully in my ears. And I felt in that moment the prickling of neck and back when you know, you KNOW, something unpleasant is lurking behind you. Taking its time. On that border between what you can and can’t see, ready to slip back into shadow should you turn you head however quickly. I couldn’t move or breathe, and knowing I was ridiculous, hoping to God I was delusional, I ran. I ran through the halls, around corners, snaking through the rows of cubicle walls that now seemed to tower around and close off my escape- to the soft glow of a computer monitor, a half finished Dr Pepper can forgotten and pushed to one side, fluorescent light shining down from above like a sacred covenant of safety. I stood panting there, vaguely amused and embarrassed by myself. Ridiculous creature that I was, I let my imagination creep up behind me and chase me through the halls of my workplace- thank God no one else had been working late, or they would’ve seen me! I sat down, laughing a little as I finally caught my breath. I was going to log off and go home, and never ever lose track of the time again- but when I checked the clock to log my time, I saw… It was only four in the afternoon. That couldn’t be right, dark as midnight at four p.m., and everyone gone home already? That was…
And I felt the prickling again, and I knew, I knew whatever it was had its hand curled around the top of the cubicle wall and it was watching me with something like glee as my terror mounted again. If I didn’t look at it, if I pretended it wasn’t there, maybe… maybe it would turn out not to be real. My eyes flicked to my keys. I grabbed them, closed my eyes and turned, sprinting out, running again, thinking that I heard high pitched unearthly laughter, felt clawish fingers catch at the edges of my clothes, the end of my hair. I yelled, not a scream of fear but a maybe some ward against darkness. I reached the doors and could see nothing but dark past the sidewalk, but I pushed at the door without pausing. They did not budge and I was almost thrown backwards by my own momentum. I had to type in my code to open the door. My hands were shaking and I pressed the last number twice by mistake. A buzzer sounded and a red light by the door flashed. I looked around wildly trying to see what had been alerted to my attempts, but I thought despairingly, it already knows where I am, I’m the only one left and it knows exactly where I am. I tried to punch in the numbers again but my fingers slipped and the buzzer sounded again. I let out a ragged and hysterical sob. I could hear it coming, feel it breathing, moving so deliberately in the darkness. Again and again the buzzer sounded, and the red light flashed, and the door remained coldly indifferent to my desperate gasps and pushes. And it was beside me then, drinking in my horror. I closed my eyes and turned away, pressing myself into the door. I didn’t want to know what it looked like. I never would.
We only had space for one page this issue, so it is just literature this time. Next time the art will be back! Submit your art or writing to us at email@example.com! It doesn’t have to be Nerdfighter related, share what you want to share. Have you submitted something and it’s not in The Anglerfish? Don’t worry, we’re probably just saving it for a future issue.
Issue 9 October 2013 | The Anglerfish
Published on Oct 28, 2013
Published on Oct 28, 2013
Halloween is upon us friends, and The Anglerfish is no exception! Come celebrate the spookiest of seasons with us as we delve into the histo...