For a guy who rarely likes to leave his condo I’ve sure been getting out a lot lately. I had a cool weekend and I’m here to tell you about it. Now’s a good time for a bathroom break because there won’t be another one until the end of the post!
JC Oddities Market, Cathedral Hall, Jersey City
Saturday marked the return of the JC Oddities Market at Cathedral Hall in Jersey City. I missed the last Oddities Market, so I made it a point to get there for this one. Plus, I needed to to fill my lifetime quota of attending an oddity flea market in an old church. Not only did I need to fill that very specific void, but with a long family history in Jersey City, I always look for any reason to venture there. Adding to that, my friend Bob Burke (the Glow Art champion of the world!) mentioned to me that he’d have a table there again. And to further reinforce my trip, the church is getting demolished at some point in the near future, so I’m glad I decided to go.
This macabre market was unlike anything I’d ever been to before. The old church (Saint Bridget’s) was adorned with string lights and a random, oversized Delia Deetz-style snake sculpture in the middle of the floor up near the altar. I felt like I was on the set of a late ‘90s low budget horror sequel. (Definitely a part 4 or later.) The middle of the church floor was lined with vendor tables and artists selling everything from records and artwork to taxidermy and homemade jewelry. If only OMC sang a song called “How Bazaar,” now would be the most appropriate time to have that pop in your head. Even after being to so many cons and flea markets, most of these vendors were brand new to me. The basement featured even more tables, so I surpassed my usual 15 minute zip-through for one of these things.
I also ran into my friend Nicole and her girlfriend. You may recall Nicole, fellow Jerseyan and horror fanatic, who way back in 2014, let me post a piece of her writing here at The Sexy Armpit. It was so great to meet her after being friends with her online for so long. Nicole has since changed her social media handles so you can now follow her at @allthedamnvamps on Twitter and @allthedamnvampires on IG.
As for pickups, going into this thing I’d say that tea wouldn’t be a thing that I would come home with…AT ALL. Oddly enough, Brutaliteas was on site and proved me completely wrong. They were giving out samples and making tea cooler than it ever was, one tiny ass sample cup at a time. The creative offerings from Brutalitieas are truly game changing. This Jersey couple crafts their own homemade teas and infuses them with a horror or hard rock twist i.e Back in Blackberry, Apricot for Destruction? C’MON! Those are a must buy merely on the wordplay alone. I tried a sample at their table and it was delicious and the aromas are amazing. I was sold. I bought 3 packs. It was so hard to decide from a slew of amazing themes. I narrowed it down to Screamsicle, The Detoxic Avenger (obviously had to get that one), and A Nightpear on Elm Street. I haven’t brewed them yet, but I will very soon. I’ll likely throw in some ice cubes because I’m an iced tea freak.
The benevolent Brutaliteas donates part of the proceeds from sales of the Detoxic Avenger (Lloyd Kaufman approved) to canine cancer. Courtney and Adam are a seriously wonderful couple and it was great to meet them. You can tell that they love what they’re doing because it shines through in their teas. And those PUNS! You can read about their story at their website.
Barcade is for getting buzzed and playing old video games. That was what I did the previous times I’ve been there. Although, I never thought I’d intentionally waltz into a Barcade for a late lunch without taking in an arcade game, but that’s exactly what happened. This time, I plopped myself down on a stool at the bar and ordered my usual drink and a…wait for it…veggie burger?!?! What?
Possibly a little known secret, Barcade’s veggie burger is badass! Equally as shocking, I’m a bit of a connoisseur of veggie burgers. I order veggie burgers almost anytime I can’t get eggplant parm. Spots like Barcade that make their own patties from original recipes in-house are the best. To order a veggie burger from a place that uses frozen patties is crazy because those could be made at home. If you’re into Veggie Burgers, get one next time you’re at Barcade. YUM! Tell me you don’t start getting hungry after reading the menu entry directly from their website:
Veggie Burger Deluxe
6 oz. fresh patty of beets, brown rice, and black beans topped with cheddar, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, mayo & spicy ketchup on a bun.
In between all this I literally just wandered around Jersey City basically all day. I kept running into the best eye candy for my Jersey obsession. I snapped some photos for posterity.
8-Bit Mystery Pin, The Monkey’s Paw Store
Saturday was a good mail day thanks to the arrival of the pin pictured above. Scooby Doo meets Jason Voorhees has always been a mash up I’ve desperately wanted to see come to fruition. We’ve come very close a few times going back to an episode of Robot Chicken, and then some artwork from artist Travis Falligant, then there was also the Mystery of Crystal Lake enamel pin by The Monkey’s Paw where Shag and Scoob had a run-in with Jason. I snatched that one up as soon as it was released, but not too long after, they started teasing this 8-bit styled sequel to their original pin. What makes these pins so incredible is that they both had a run of only 50 worldwide. It’s a total collector’s item for a guy like me who loves both Scooby-Doo and Friday the 13th.
On Sunday, we went to iPlay for an event that wound up getting cancelled. We had a couple of consolation drinks then walked through the arcade area where I found this beautiful DC Comics game. All the major characters were featured on the game. I was stoked to see their Bronze age versions represented so I had to share it here. I didn’t actually play the game, just stood there drooling over it and took a thousand photos of every panel as blatantly illustrated in the collage above. Now that I got that out of my system, maybe I’ll actually play it next time.
With 2 WWE events this weekend, (NXT Takeover and Backlash) I spent a lot of time on the WWE Network. I wound up unexpectedly re-binging CAMP WWE. To call it a binge is a bit of a stretch since the season only lasted 5 episodes. I’m sure watching them all again sounds pretty wild to even the most die-hard WWE fans, since almost everyone I’ve talked to about the show haven’t seemed too excited about it. The first time I watched it was about a day or so after the WWE premiered it on the network and I found it amusing, but wasn’t crazy for it. After a second helping, I’m finding myself loving it.
When you think about it, there hasn’t been a WWE animated show since Hulk Hogan’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling, which I loved as a kid (around 75 years ago.) Merely for that reason alone, it automatically gains major cool points in my book. Think about it for a second, a modern day WWE animated series is pretty monumental. Wrestling AND cartoons combined? Drink it in maaaan! Let’s not take it for granted.
There’s also the fact that it’s funny thanks to a ton of in-jokes for wrestling fans. It’s written and produced by lifelong wrestling fans and that translates to a show that doesn’t dumb anything down. I found myself having a blast with it way more this time. The summer camp backdrop is like built-in nostalgia and Mr. McMahon hamming it up is incredible. Some of the other highlights of the show feature The Undertaker becoming one with nature, A 7-year old Stone Cold Steve Austin getting tanked on beers at a bar, an amusing appearance by Goldust as Mr. McMahon’s personal assistant, the actual Lex Express bus blowing up, and a truly hysterical take on Bray Wyatt. Check it out if you haven’t yet!
Ice Cream at Jersey Freeze
Before we headed home to catch WWE Backlash, I abruptly screeched the car off Route 33 and into the Jersey Freeze parking lot for some ice cream. The last time I was here was at least 15 years ago, so it was about time to rectify that. I got a cone with peanut butter pie ice cream. It was so delicious. I’ve never had this flavor before so I asked the girl behind the counter what was in it. She had no idea so she asked one of her coworkers. Once she mentioned peanut butter ice cream, bits of pie crust, and peanut butter cups I was putty in her hands. If you’re in the area this summer, make a pit stop there! (or an ARMPIT STOP! <rimshot>)
Thanks for reading about my latest excursion! Hope to see you back here soon!
View our Flickr Album from this event for larger photos here:
As I mention here every year, choosing who I want to dress up as for Halloween is never easy. I need some sort of divine inspiration, which sometimes doesn’t come until the very last minute. This year, I went with a character that I wanted to tackle for about 6 or 7 years now, but didn’t think I’d be able to pull it off properly.
The Diabolical Disc Demon a.k.a The Phantom was a Scooby Doo Villain in ONE EPISODE, but that was all it took to leave a lifelong impression on me. I’ve wanted to be him for Halloween for so long and I’ve had his mask at the top of my closet for 4 years now. He scared me the same way as Gene Simmons did when I was a kid, but as I grew up I realized he was just a knockoff of Gene, or more accurately a mixture of Gene’s makeup style and hints of Ace Frehley’s costume (hell, they even lifted his nickname ACE Decade.) I made up my mind and I knew it was high time that I finally embodied the Disc Demon for a night.
Miss Sexy Armpit decided she wanted to be Frankie Stein, my favorite Monster High doll this year. A couple of years back she was Draculaura which came out awesome, but I’m biased toward Frankie though. She did a great job with her costume and makeup as always. So, we were locked in with our costume decisions. It was just a matter of completing our costumes and then figuring out where we would actually go. It’s one thing to have kickass costumes, but if no plans are made, then we’d just be taking selfies in the bathroom at home all night and eating guacamole and passing out on the couch.
I made the executive decision to head off to Trenton, NJ for the Monster’s Ball.
The early evening on Saturday began pretty typically for me. And by that, I mean disastrous. With me, you know nothing’s ever easy, so realizing that I bought the “standard size” blue spandex suit was quite a debacle. Seemed like the right choice, but NOPE. What a dumbass! This thing couldn’t have been more constricting if I had Damien the snake wrapped around my entire body. It’s only for guys from 5’4″ – 5’10” and 120-165 lbs. I’m 6 ft and about 190 some odd lbs. I was a bit uncomfortable, but I toughed it out in the name of Halloween.
Once I got myself situated, we took some pictures. After all, the photos are the only way to commemorate these occasions. Apologies to Mike and Lauren who were waiting for us outside for like half an hour unbeknownst to me as I took creepy bathroom selfies at my friends house. Mike was the Red Hood and his wife Lauren was Jean Grey/Phoenix. Finally, we piled into Mike’s (@IdiotatPlay) car and headed to Trenton. Lots of cars whizzed by and stared at me as if I looked out of the ordinary or something.
Literally as soon as I walked in the door to check in, one guy was like “Whoa the Disc Demon, right?!! So cool man!” I couldn’t believe I was recognized so quickly as such an obscure character, but it started the party with a positive vibe.
Once inside, Miss Sexy Armpit immediately grabbed me to point out the costumes of a couple in front of us. Our first choice this year was going to be Dick Tracy and Breathless Mahoney, and boy am I glad we opted against it because this couple looked fantastic as them. They knocked it out of the park.
The entire Artworks building was decked out for Halloween with all kinds of homemade creepy decorations enhancing the atmosphere as well as pieces of art based off horror movies and Halloween. We met up with our good friend Bob Burke who created that kickass glowing Halloween 3 print I got at the Punk Rock Flea market not too long ago. One of his pieces of art was on display here as well and it’s one of my favorites of his, here I am in the pic below posing with it.
Take a look at some of the other cool art on display at this party:
Not to sound purposely vague, but there were several rooms with different things going on. One room had activities like a photo booth and some kind of other situation that I have absolutely no recollection of. I’m hoping to continue being less descriptive about the random activities going on. All I remember is Bob and I bringing up Step Brothers and how much space there was for activities. Always. Any time someone merely says the word activities that’s what comes up, it’s a prerequisite. Another activity was EATING. Here’s the room with the hors d’oe uvres, NOTE the cheese balls! My kind of f’n party!
One thing I remember for sure was the room with all the drinks had horror films and spooky animated shorts showing being projected on a screen. There were also some cool blacklit glowing trees. I tried putting one in Mike’s trunk but it was way too big. I tried to avoid the blatant sexual innuendo in that sentence, but there was just no other way to describe that. Ultimately I wanted to tie it to the top of his car like Aunt Edna, but they all talked me out of it considering how I was dressed. The cops would’ve loved that. “License and registration sir, wait, is that a glowing tree tied to your roof? And a Disc Demon in the back seat? I’m calling in some backup…” In New Jersey that’s ground for incarceration. Ok, so I didn’t try stealing the glow tree, but I did have to drink my beer through a straw. I stuck it in the mouth hole. Boom, there’s another one for ya.
Once the party was in full swing, I got that feeling. That type of feeling that I used to get at the high school Halloween masquerade party. Those were the best. I looked forward to them each year. Sophomore year I won runner up, while junior and senior year I won scariest costume. All 3 years I dressed up as Gene Simmmons from KISS. What really put it over though was that I was completely in character. I’d go up to a circle of people whether I was friends with them or not and I’d stare at them and very slowly and subtly started drooling blood out of my mouth. I would go to these parties with literally 200 blood capsules. The best part was that even though everyone knew I was the resident KISS fan, one of the only ones in the school mind you, people were scared and they weren’t sure if it was me or someone that was planted at the party as some sort of creepy entertainment.
Back to the Artworks party. The DJ was pumping Halloween tunes like “Nightmare on My Street,” and it was my kind of crowd and vibe. Everyone was having a good time and they weren’t getting out of hand, which was good because I didn’t feel like kicking some ass in a spandex body suit and 35 lbs of felt. Then, without any warning, a troupe of belly dancers joined together in the middle of the dance floor and began their exotic gyrations. That’s when everyone knew the shit was on. It was like a mango sorbet aged about 60 years to cleanse the palate of all those cheese balls.
It was about 10:30 which signalled the costume contest. There were some cool costumes I scoped out throughout the night including a dude Maleficent who I referred to as MALEficent. Each entrant to the contest went up on a little stage and showed off for the judges. For some reason I was at the front of the line with Miss Sexy Armpit, but I was asked to go to the back of the line for some reason. I thought I was in trouble, or I was just too damn tall in these 6 inch boots.
When they were ready to announce the winners I had absolutely no clue who would win, but my theory was that it would be the girl who dressed as the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland. She seemed like a safe bet. They gave out prizes to one or two runners up, and I wasn’t even paying attention then I heard the woman announcer yell “there’s only ONE Diabolical Disc Demon…” I couldn’t believe it. I never go with what will be popular in terms of costume choice, I go with what inspires me, and this time it really impressed the judges! The last time I’d won a costume contest was when we got 3rd runner up for our Macho Man and Elizabeth costumes at a masquerade about 5 years ago. This time I won First place and took home $100 bucks. Not too shabby. I probably spent nearly double that on putting together te costume though, but I’m not complaining!
After the contest was over, the energetic band with the tiny frontwoman wearing the aerobics costume, Molly Rhythm, started their set. After checking them out for a bit, we capped things off appropriately, the way most late nights in New Jersey end…at the diner.
Now…to do it all again on Halloween!
Instead of just writing up a post and taking photos of the panels in this comic book I created a short video for you! This is all about the DC Scooby Doo comic book #44 featuring a story called “The Jersey Devil.”
I was literally stunned to see this mask at a booth at the New York Comic Con this year. For those of you who are not familiar with who this mask is supposed to be, you need to take a trip back to your childhood! The slab of rubbery glory is a triumph for Scooby-Doo fans, well, for me at least. The mask is based off of The Diabolical Disc Demon, a villainous knockoff of Gene Simmons from one of my all time favorite episodes of Scooby Doo: Where Are You? that first aired in 1978. I’m pretty sure The Disc Demon could’ve gotten away with it if it wasn’t for those meddling stoners and their dog! Other classic Scooby villains are also available in case you for some reason haven’t figured out what to dress up as for Halloween.
Click below to read all about The Disc Demon episode and the appearance of KISS on Scooby-Doo in a classic Sexy Armpit post:
For me, one of the appealing nuances of Scooby Doo was how the show incorporated reality by featuring real life guest celebrities. The Scooby Doo movies captured that idea superbly featuring everyone from the Monkees’ Davy Jones to Sonny & Cher. More recently, the episode of What‘s New Scooby New, “A Scooby Doo Halloween” features KISS’ Paul Stanley lending his voice to an animated version of himself. The gang is on another adventure in the Mystery Machine when Shaggy explains how excited he can’t wait to be “Rockin’ with KISS.”
Here KISS is playing a masquerade ball in honor of Banning Junction’s 100th anniversary. The animated KISS performs “Shout It Out Loud” which naturally gets interrupted by a wacky ghost chase.
ACE: What should we do?
PAUL: What we always do, keep playin ’til the cops come!
Shaggy: Im going to ask Paul Stanley to sign my forehad!
Scooby: Me too!
The gang also has a run in with some rabid robotic pumpkin headed scarecrows who shoot flames from their eyeholes and wield sickles!
Scooby certainly has other quasi-KISS ties. While “the phantom” in the episode of The Scooby Doo Show entitled “The Diabolical Disc Demon” isn’t referred to as Gene Simmons, his appearance is blatantly similar. Think of him as Gene Simmons with flaming hair and an Evel Knievel costume.
The gang goes to watch their friend Jimmy Lewis record in the studio at Decade records. They find out that songwriter Tony Signs has disappeared. He mysteriously left a song behind that he wrote.
FRED: What’s this about a phantom Jimmy?
JIMMY: It’s just a legend Fred. Something about a ghostly musician who wanders these
corridors seeking vengeance against those who ruined his career.
Even though he’s simply referred to as “The Phantom,” I can’t help but think about how KISS MEETS THE PHANTOM OF THE PARK was also produced by Hanna Barbera. Did they have a hard on for KISS or what? How much ass would a Hanna Barbera KISS cartoon kick? I know I sure as hell wouldn’t mind watching one right now.
Here “The Phantom” looks like he’s doing the Ickey Shuffle until he’s found out to be washed up glam rocker Ace Decade. As for Scooby, a paper airplane made from sheet music saved his ass this time.
You know how Vince Vaughn was making balloon animals in Wedding Crashers? Well I can’t pull off a neat trick like that so I decided to have some fun with speech balloons and the old Scooby Doo movies featuring the Scooby gang’s encounters with Batman and Robin. Perhaps the only other Scooby Doo movies I enjoyed as much as the ones with Batman and Robin are those featuring Phyllis Diller and Don Knotts. I enjoyed them because even though the animation was simple, their cartoon counterparts were faithful representations of themselves. I’d love to see Adult Swim start making modern day Scooby Doo movies but with adult humor where the audience gets the joke sort of in the comedy vain of Harvey Birdman, Frisky Dingo, and The Venture Brothers to name a few. Wouldn’t it be great if we could watch Scooby Doo meets Jack Black late on a Friday night? How about Scooby Doo meets The Foo Fighters? That would be hysterical! Adult Swim are you writing all this down? You better be…