Scholar of the Strange and Mysterious
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Professor Hex
Scholar of the Strange and Mysterious
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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year 

Steve invents ghost busting machine 

Malaysians seek Bigfoot 

Go-Go Crypto Hominid 

Mysterious Condition Plagues Gulf War Vets 

But did he talk back?

Germany reopens its 6,800-year-old mystery circle 

Aerial photographers map archaeological sites 


Doctors, spiritualist remove mystery nail from woman's head 
With gruesome pic.

Friday, December 30, 2005

UFO Sightings of Illinois 

Mysterious liquid found in excavated bronzeware in NW China 

Dillinger death subject of cable TV special 

Thursday, December 29, 2005

U.S. Teen Runs Off to Iraq by Himself 

Adventures from the Technology Underground 

Exorcisms Rise in Mexico, Keeping Father Mendoza Busy 

Out there: a top-ten list for aliens 

Mohegans May Regain Ownership Of New England's Largest Boulder 

The big squeeze 

Where the Steers and the Aliens Play 

Congress petitioned for return of Geronimo's remains 

R.I. town mulls move of 1700s milestone 

UFO Casebook's Best UFO Photographs of 2005  
I like the blurry one.

Moses' Ten Commandments may lie in Ethiopia 

Conspiracy book is filled with the usual suspects and some unusual ones 

Hunley scientists find clues to vessel's demise 

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

The proper martini rules 

Greys Matter 

Revealed: the pill that prevents cancer 

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Las Vegas Based Scientists Study 'Skinwalker Ranch' 

Unidentified Gas Sickens Dozens in St. Petersburg Store 

'Crow whisperer' continues to amaze 

Study to verify 'Bigfoot' 

Mysterious 'purple rain' falls in Williamsburg 
No word from Prince.

I couldn't find Parts 1 and 2.

Historians unearth mysteries -- and magic 

Believe it or not, Wisconsin was weird in '05 

World-famous Nun Bun stolen 

Norman Vaughan, 1905-2005 

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Federal agents' visit was a hoax: Student admits he lied about Mao book 

With centuries of history, tree is free for all to claim and enjoy 

Cell phones hung CIA for 'rendition'  

Maybe the right jolly old elf is an illusionist 

Raining catfish 

Magical mistletoe 

Nugget murmurs to secret admirer 

Gold coin sweetens pot 

New claims over weeping Madonna  

Hints of Hawaii's legends and secrets are found in 'Lost' 

Unravelling the tsunami myster 

Clues unearthed about graves along Trail of Tears  

Was it UFOs? Mystery haunts eastern plains 

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Mysterious author of 'Eiger Sanction' dies at 74 

The Premature Death of Paul McCartney 

Wiretap Mystery: Spooks React 

A 5,500-year-old mystery emerges 

Top Cryptozoology Books 2005 
Loren Coleman's picks for 2005.

Riddle of "corpse bride" draws crowds 

Stalin Planned Army of Ape-Man Super-Warriors 

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Pulitzer-Winning Columnist Anderson Dies 
A real American Hero has passed.

15 things about me and books 
Well, Weirdwriter threw down the gauntlet. I have picked it up and . . . uh . . . typed about it.

My father was a tremendous reader. I grew up around books and reading. There's a baby picture of me sitting on the floor with the newspaper spread out in front of me. My father's sitting in a chair behind me, reading the paper. I was imitating my father.

I remember very clearly when I learned to read. I was playing school in our garage on a rainy summer's day and an older neighborhood girl was trying to teach me and some other kids. All at once, the words on the board made sense. It all dropped into place. I ran upstairs and proudly told my mom, "I can read!" I was five. My mom says I never read any early reading children's books and that the first book I read was "Jonathan Livingston Seagull."

When I was a kid there was a comic book shop not far from my house and my dad would take me there to buy comics. It was part comic book store and part used book store and what I remember more than anything was the wonderful smell of old paper. To this day, nothing smells like my childhood as much as an old comic book. I saw my first pulp magazine at this store, as well as my first Shadow and Doc Savage paperback reprint. Marked for life. I also met my first real author at this store - Carl Sherrell. He was just buying books and the owner introduced me to him. He gave me a signed copy of his paperback. My first signing.

I read a lot of Encyclopedia Brown books. I also remember reading Alfred Hitchcock's Three Investigators, the Mad Scientist's Club, and every Scholastic book about UFOs, Bigfoot, lake monsters, vampires, werewolves, psychics, and witches I could get my hands on.

My father always let me read his Playboys. Even when I was a kid. I was probably the only ten year old in the country that had read John Updike and Hunter S. Thompson. I had no idea what most of it meant, but I read it.

When I was in the fourth grade I read Trevanian's The Loo Sanction for a book report and the teacher called my father to tell him that she didn't think it was appropriate reading material. My dad told her to get stuffed.

I was a creative writing major in school but I couldn't figure out what I wanted to write. I'm still not sure. I've read hundreds of books on writing and I still haven't found my voice. Part of it is laziness, but part of it is I don't think I'm very good. I'm trying to write stories that move and have a tangible, visceral feel to them - insightful genre fiction - but I don't know how. It's like spinning the dial on a safe waiting for the cylinders to drop. I always get bogged down in the second act. Perhaps my characters aren't real enough to live by themselves. Probably.

When my father died we had donations go to his favorite library with the stipulation being that they spend the money on new fiction because that was his favorite. When they bought the books they were nice enough to send them all over to my mother's house. We lined them up on the fireplace and had about ten feet of books, all with a "Donated by" bookplate and my father's name. That felt nice.

I'm completely anal about the condition of my books. I treat them with reverence. Almost all my paperbacks look unread, even if I've read them twice or more. I am completely non-anal about anything else.

When I lived in Portland I found a series of 50's Lesbian Nurse novels at the Salvation Army for a quarter a piece. When I left Portland I sold them to Powell's for big money.

I read fast. I think it's an outgrowth of learning with flashcards. I usually read several books a week, both fiction and nonfiction. I go through phases. I read a lot of short stories because I like to read before I go to sleep. I used to collect how-to books.

I like meeting writers. I've shared a joint with Allan Ginsburg, got drunk with P.J. O'Rourke, filmed William Burroughs, smoked a cigarette with Andrew Vachss, learned from Lawrence Block, kissed Alice Joanou, and spent a wonderful afternoon with Hugh Cave a year before he died. I've found writers to be very approachable. But no, talent doesn't rub off.

I got Hugh Cave's name out of the phonebook and asked if I could come over. He said sure. He was 92 at the time. I brought a six foot tall Greek girl and a stack of paperbacks from a bookstore in West Palm Beach. He flirted with Anthonia and showed me his office. A desk, a chair, a computer. A handful of reference books. A room for writing.

I've worked in a variety of bookstores. In college, I worked at the Raven Bookstore in Lawrence, Kansas. When I lived in San Francisco, I worked at Forever After Books at Haight and Ashbury. My friends Will and Tom own Prospero's Books in Kansas City and I helped renovate their current space, a former hardware store.

I can't think of a book that "changed my life" but two come very close. In college I read Robert Anton Wilson's Cosmic Trigger and and Colin Wilson's The Occult virtually back to back. It was as if someone stuck a crowbar in my head and cracked open my brain. I've never looked at things the same way.

So how did you find the Professor today? 
We all have dreams my friend.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Elections Official: Some Voting Machines Could Be Hacked 

White people are mutants! 

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Locust Bisque 
No, really, locust bisque.

La Maupin 

Food stamps won't offset heating bills 

Corroborating Evidence: The Black Dahlia Murder 
Over at Amazon and as yet unreviewed. I'd like to hear from anyone who has read it. I'm looking at you, Elisabeth.

There is evidence in this true story supporting the connections between the Cleveland Torso Murders, the murder of socialite Georgette Bauerdorf, the murders of Josephine Ross and Frances Brown, the murder and dismemberment of Suzanne Degnan, the murder and bisection of Elizabeth Short (The Black Dahlia), the murder of Jeanne Axford French (The Red Lipstick Murder) and other victims.

Bible John was real. Not a myth made up by the Press  

Mistletoe rustlers 
Call the sheriff!

Bindi as a hip accessory 

Teacher settles lawsuit over curriculum content 

Skull Study Suggests at Least Two Groups Colonized Americas 

King Kong island home is pure fantasy, ecology experts say 
Oh, but what a fantasy.

Yes, Florida Frank, There Are Skunk Apes 

Let's see some ID, please  

2005: Year of the Bizarre? 
Yup, pretty much.

Does the Muslim Satan Carry a Pitchfork? 

New light shed on Shakespeare's Macbeth 
Contemporary optical science could have inspired a famous supernatural event in one of Shakespeare's darkest works, new research suggests.

And the bard may have used the emerging tricks with mirrors as special effects when the play hit the stage.

Did Elizabethan theater employ advanced optics? John Dee says maybe...

It's hard to tell from the article, but they seem to be implying that they were using an effect similar to Pepper's Ghost, although that seems unlikely. Perhaps it was some sort of magic lantern, first described in 1671 - 55 years after the Bard's death.

UFO sighting claim  

The 10 Most Puzzling Ancient Artifacts 

Ancient stories carved in stone are everywhere here 

Cracking da Vinci's coded smile 

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

More secrecy may be coming 

You really can find identities of top patent holders 

Don't Buy Into Skunk Ape Tale 

Was the Virgin Mary a refugee in Pakistan? 

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Regret The Error: The Year in Media Errors and Corrections 

New Bible John probe questions theory of a single serial killer 

Bigfoot Buzz 



For Whom Hell's Bells Toll 

Voodoo Lounge 

Monday, December 12, 2005

Babalon - A Fable of Rocketry, Sex and High Magick 

Catlike Creature Spotted In Central Ohio -- Again 

Inmate hints at solution to Bell of Batoche mystery 

'Queen of the Mountain Bootleggers' dies at age 101 

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Clarkson University Engineer Outwits High-Tech Fingerprint Fraud 

How to make shot glasses out of ice 

Kong Attacks Loren Coleman  

Shaolin's rich road to Nirvana 

Boy finds ancient bison head  

Authorities: Dead woman was healer, herbalist 

JFK killing still inspires new books on theories 

'Witch' book tells of matricide 

Screaming Banshee 

Dire predictions for 2006 
It's gonna be an ugly year. Maybe.

Thanks to John for the tip.

Yard calls on Charles over death of Diana  

Friday, December 09, 2005

What Is It? New Photo Mystery: Braxton Beast  

Foreign Accent syndrome baffles medical experts 

Candy Apple 

Youth suspended for speaking Spanish 

The war on Winter Solstice 
Ain't it the truth.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

"How to blow a fortune and make the FBI's Most Wanted List" 

Readers recall memories of 'big birds' from 1970s 

Open and Shut  
Ten big questions about 9-11.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Image of the Holy Cross Miraculously Appears Inside a Potato 

A History of Violets 
I may have linked to Violet Books before, but they certainly deserve a second look, especially this gallery of "Rare Dustwrappers and Decorative Bindings." These scans make excellent wallpaper and backdrops for dreary office monitors.

Violet specializes in "Antiquarian Supernatural Literature, including literary ghost stories, Victorian science fiction, Yellow Nineties Decadence, H. Rider Haggard & haggardesque "Lost Race" novels, Marie Corelli & other occult romancers, Rafael Sabatini & Jeffery Farnol & all vintage swashbuckling historical romances, westerns, Yukon adventures, jungle tales, Sax Rohmer & all weird thrillers, classic detectives, vintage children's & young adult fantasies & series books, & all things old, fictional, adventurous, & weird." Whew. Tell 'em the Professor sent you.

Cheese it! The cops! 

Easter Island's demise caused by rats, Dutch traders says new theory 

Druids unveil mystery of the mistletoe  

Monster A-Go-Go Mystery 

Free passport photos 
For your bookmarking pleasure.

Courtesy of boing boing.

Did lead poisoning finish Beethoven? 

The Kecksburg UFO incident 

Amazing Missing Links 

Monday, December 05, 2005

Trial told of torn-up doll  

The safest place to kill a woman 

Mystery of UFO research puzzles scientists 

Unknown carnivore found on Borneo  

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Save the Derby 
The last of the original Brown Derby restaurants is scheduled for the wrecking ball. Help save it by signing the petition.

And while your at it, check out Los Angeles Time Machines for some of the living history of LA that hasn't been destroyed by developers.

And, if you're interested in the history of LA, check out the 1947 Project, a "day-by-day blog of the year's most lurid misdeeds, complete with photos and directions to the locations where they occurred and wry commentary on the spot's current architectural and preservation status (or, more often, lack thereof)."

Bosnia hill may house pyramid 

How Carnival Racketeers Fleece the Public 
Good to know.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Superior Beasties? 

Legend of a snake charmer lives on 

FBI Is Taking Another Look at Forged Prewar Intelligence  

Newfound Greek Site is Really Ancient 

Sploid: Sorcery, Goblins & Murder 
Sploid's got it.

Cave girl mystery revealed  

Friday, December 02, 2005

New Bigfoot photo? 

Buried secrets of the city murder dolls 
CAREFULLY and gently, the cotton swab is run over the mysterious tiny wooden doll. Skilfully handled by the DNA expert, it is placed back into the equally small hand-carved coffin in which it was secreted on Arthur's Seat almost two centuries ago in the midst of an infamous killing spree.

Two serial killers were on the loose, their tally 17 murders. And it seems that in the midst of the horror, someone was secretly carving tiny effigies - one for each victim - and burying them quietly in a cave in the extinct volcano in the centre of Edinburgh.

The question is, who? And why?


It is around 170 years since 17 minute figures in coffins were first found by schoolboys out rabbiting on Arthur's Seat back in 1836, prompting fears that they were related to witchcraft.

But it wasn't until the 1990s, decades after the dolls were bought and displayed at the Royal Museum of Scotland, that experts suggested that the 17 dolls in fact represented the 17 victims of the infamous Burke and Hare - murders for which Burke was hanged after Hare turned Queen's evidence to save his own life.

Edward the Confessor's original tomb found 

Even the mayor wonders: Who is the real Jim West? 

Porn queen's death no mystery 

The insurgency is all hopped up on meth 
Sploid's got it.

Justice Staff Saw Texas Districting As Illegal 

Thursday, December 01, 2005

It runs in the family 
The Professor's niece, Goblina, called tonight with some questions as to the veracity of the Bloody Mary legend, which prompted a discussion on the history and folklore of mirrors. Goblina seems to be following in her uncle's footsteps - on a recent visit to Hex Mansion she brought me two articles from her local paper. One about Bigfoot and one on the Kanasi Lake Monster in China. Her sister, Fantomina, is also showing some interest in the strange and mysterious. I'm so proud.

Here is an interesting site on magic mirrors, time cameras, and catoptromancy.

Groups Protest Cannibalism in Video Games 

The Cyclotron Comes to the 'Hood 

Enchanting fairy stones abound at this Va. park 

Puzzlers square off on solution to ancient grid  

Pinkies In! 

UFO reported over Shanghai 

Homolka free to roam 

Baltimore Losing Lamp Poles to Thieves  

New Minnesota Kangaroo Reports? 

Evangelist charged after 'counter-Halloween' incident 

Body in car may solve a mobster mystery 

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