And, here I am, with another apology for being so erratic when it comes to “blogging”. In such a fast paced, information age, I must be slippin’. I should be blogging every day! But I will try to pick up the pace, and run with it… Anyways, speaking of being behind, the following post is a month late. Sorry…
Our Visit To The Winchester Mystery Mansion
Most of y’all would question why a 30-something year young man would be writing a blog about his first trip to the famous Winchester house. I don’t know… why do some of you men still scratch your nuts in public at 50? Or even 70? (For those in their 80s, you have a nurse to do that for you.) Why? Why? Why?! ‘Cause it’s an unbearable itch! Okay, I admit, that was an unnecessary, unclever adolescent analogy. But, whatja expect when I’m just freewriting this off the top of my head? A witty prose like Mark Twain? Or a sarcastic, self-bludgeoning Kevin Smith-type of remark?
Anyhow, I either have a choice to continue writing about Winchester, or I can just sit here writing about how I’m just scratching my balls. Which is it? Yeah? Really? Sorry, but I use cortizone and it clears away. Therefore, I’m all out of options and I have a pair of sleeping, non-itchy balls I must ignore, and to just continue typing…
Well, recently, Eszter, Bazsi, and I headed up towards San Jose to visit the Winchester Mystery House. Naturally, on the drive up (or down South, I should say), a conversation about horror movies would ensue – esp. haunted house flicks. What are the good ones? We spoke of the Amityville Horror (1979 version), The Shining (Kubrick’s version), The Legend of Hell House, The Haunting, The Changeling… which was probably the initial motivation to go on this trip in the first place. We were over-enthusiastic hoping to experience what happens in the movies.
The Winchester Mystery House
Upon arriving, we took the complete package tour – A tour of the mansion, and a backstage tour. Hey you only live once! Unless, of course, if the Winchester is truly haunted, then there are spirits that are reliving the tour for free… forever. Bastards! The dead get away with everything!
Well, the tour was a two-and-a-half-hour walk through the maze that is the Winchester Mansion. Although, it’s questionable if I would ever stay in a place like this alone at nights, I am not a believer in the existence of ghosts. Growing up as a child, with an imaginative and a fear of a supernatural world, I was somewhat intrigued what it would be like to have met Jodie the Pig, the Eggheaded Lady, and even Casper the friendly ghost. (The later is a cartoon, I know. I was being sarcastic, don’t call me stupid.) But, in the end, the tour experience consisted mostly of an overview of an eccentric, old lady and her surrounding daily life in the early 19th century in a big mansion. But, it still held an educational fascination for me, because, in the 21st century, I’m still only a poor, old, Chinese American living in San Francisco.
The backstory of the Winchester House (according to Wikipedia) goes like this:
The Winchester Mystery House is a well-known California mansion that was under construction continuously for 36 years and is reputed to be haunted. It once was the personal residence of Sarah Winchester, the widow of gun magnate William Wirt Winchester, but is now a tourist attraction. Under Sarah Winchester’s guidance, construction on the house continued 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, until her death 38 years later on September 5, 1922. The cost for such constant building has been estimated at about US $5.5 million.
The mansion is renowned for its size and lack of a master building plan. According to popular belief, Sarah Winchester thought the house was haunted by the ghosts of individuals killed by Winchester rifles, and that only continuous construction would appease them. It is located at 525 South Winchester Blvd. in San Jose, California. more
For anymore info, do the damn tour. Or wait until death, haunt Winchester, and get the free tour forever… and ever… and ever…
Stephen King’s Red Rose
I’m a total non-believer in the supernatural. But I love a good scary ghost story.
Prior to the trip, Eszter had lent me, and I had watched, the 4-hour TV mini-series Rose Red to prepare me for this Winchester visit. Apparently, Stephen King had loosely based Rose Red on Winchester. The movie itself is typical TV melodrama that has its limits of how much “horror” can be displayed to a family TV audience. Or so I thought. I’m unsure how much they had allowed to be shown when it was first aired on TV, but the scene involving one of the character’s fingers get sliced off was quite graphic. Cool! (The DVD box does say PG-13.) The ghosts seems to appear in 3 forms in this film, as living corpses, as ethereal alien-like, and as invisible entities. My one complaint about the movie (and some haunted house/supernatural flicks) is that there’s always a scene involving a debate about the so-called limits of science – the “absence of evidence” argument. I believe in order for a horror movie to work, one has to suspend belief in rational explainations . But to bash science ruins that wonderment and belief when escaping into the film’s goal to scare. (Look at what happened when they released Exorcist II: The Heretic.)
For more account about “our trip to the Winchester House”, visit Eszter’s blog.
Okay? It’s time for me to grab the cortizone.
Anyway, to end this blog, here’s that mysterious trailer that appeared before Transformers (bleh!).
It has no title, no synopsis, only a release date: Jan. 18, 2008.
The rumor is that it is a cross between “Blair Witch” and “Godzilla”… *shrug*
But if you Google “Cloverfield Movie”, you can obtain more info.