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Devil Music

I grew up in the Bible belt. Furthermore I grew up in the Bible belt during the time known as the "Satanic Panic" during the late 80's and early 90's. In fact, if you are familiar with the West Memphis Three, I am around the same age as them and could drive there in in a day. I had parents who sent me to a Christian school for the first 6 years of my education. So you can imagine the consternation when I started playing  Dungeons and Dragons  and listening to  heavy metal .  I had a friend who gave me Motley Crue's Shout At The Devil album on vinyl. The tape just had a picture of the four members of the band in their faux Road Warrior outfits, and probably wouldn't have caused that much of a fuss. But the record was a gatefold cover, with the front being a black on black pentagram. My mom saw that and had a conniption fit. She took the record and the song titles God Bless the Children of the Beast and Bastard convinced her that this record was not only satanic

Who Loves You and Who Do You Love

The following post was submitted by Jennifer Lewis. You can find her on Facebook here . There are a lot of cultural icons we can all cite who have impacted our lives, including but not limited to The Beatles, Steven Spielberg, James Dean, John Williams, Marilyn Monroe, George Lucas, Elvis, Harrison Ford, and so on.  With that being said, I want to recognize someone who had star power back in his day, but never rose to the heights of fame as those mentioned, although he has certainly impacted my life.  Richard Dawson (1932-2012).  Richard Dawson’s presence throughout my life is undeniable.  It’s hard to say when and how he first came onto my cultural radar, but I’ll focus on his career and impact chronologically.  Richard Dawson was one of the loveable and heroic members of Hogan’s Heroes, playing British Corporal Newkirk.  His charisma, charm, and good looks in the role won me over, and he was my favorite on Hogan’s Heroes.  I have several memories of watching Hogan’s Heroes with my bi

Movies With My Dad

I have already talked about my first movie experience  with my dad  so I won't repeat it here. Like many memories of my dad it is a mixed bag of good and bad. But that wasn't the only memory of him I have involving movies. He didn't talk about movies a whole lot except to say he loved westerns and wished they would make more of them. But one non-western that came up was Rebel Without a Cause. He found out it was coming on t.v. and raved about it. He told me how much he loved it, and what a great movie it was. He insisted that I had to watch it when it came on. I watched it and let him know. He asked me what I thought of it and I told him I liked it. And that was it. There was no further discussion of the movie and it was never brought up again. But I still think of him whenever I see the movie or anything referencing it. I know it must have been an important movie to him for him to react the way he did, seeing as he rarely talked about movies at all. When I was a little bit

Movie Theater Memories

I have talked before about my first memory of  going to the movies . I was a huge Star Trek fan as a kid and my parents took me to see Star Trek II : The Wrath of Khan. It was one of the few things I remember doing with both my parents, and the only time we all went to the movies together. Thinking back, it may be the only time I went to the movies with my dad at all. This may be partially explained by the fact that he mocked me mercilessly because I cried when Spock died. Keep in mind I was all of 6 years old. A couple of years later my mom took me to a re-release of E.T. Remembering my dad's jokes at my expense, I did not shed a single tear. This caused my mother to brand me a cold, heartless little monster. Hey, not all movie theater experiences can be fun and light-hearted. But most of them have been. Some just for the excitement of seeing a big hit in the theater. Waiting in lines that wrapped around the building to see Ghostbusters and The Karate Kid on opening weekend. Comin

My Life Under The Stars

  The following post was submitted by Kellie Curtains, Your Queen of Halloween. You can find her on Facebook here .    Some of my earliest and fondest memories took place at our local drive-in theatre. It was the perfect place for my parents to get out for the evening with six kids to juggle. Mom and dad would pack a cooler and we’d be off for a night of fun and flicks under the stars. I can still smell the Pic mosquito coil and hot buttered popcorn and hear the tinny echoes of seventies music playing from every speaker before the show. Mom loved it when the latest Burt Reynolds movie played, he was the big Hollywood hunk at the time. My father preferred horror films and we never missed a horror double feature. That’s when I fell in love with horror and when at the age of five, I fell in love with Vincent Price. I first saw him in The Abominable Dr. Phibes and it left quite an impression on me. Especially when he crushed that Doctor's head in the frog mask. I guess you could say

Toy Vending Machine Memories

Among my earliest memories is going to the store with my mom and seeing this machine that was a clear box filled with plastic eggs and it had a mechanical chicken inside. At the time my favorite show was Mork and Mindy, and my mom used to give me the plastic eggs her pantyhose came in as toys and I would pretend they were Mork's spaceship. So when I saw this machine that dispensed toys inside plastic eggs, in my mind I saw myself getting 2 toys for the price of 1. Every time we went to the store I would ask for a quarter, but more often than not I was told no. But when I was allowed to have the coin, it was always a banner day. First, I got to see the chicken spin and cluck before my treasure was deposited in the slot. Then I got to open the egg and see the toy I got. It was usually a lump of silly putty or a plastic army man. Then lastly I had another egg to add to my growing Orkian space armada. After we moved and started going to a different store, the toy vending machines becam

Playing My Roles

I don't really remember a time when I wasn't aware of Dungeons and Dragons. Beside the fact that it was firmly entrenched in pop culture by the time I was old enough to be aware of pop culture, I grew up in one of the inner notches of the Bible belt. I was always hearing about how the game was "Satanic" and would lead players into the world of animal sacrifices and orgies with demons. Then on Saturday morning I would watch the cartoon with the team of heroic teenagers and the cute little unicorn. When I would go to the book store I would see the books there and look at all the awesome fantasy art. I really wanted to play that game. But my parents wouldn't buy it for me and I went to a Christian school and appeared to be the only heretic on campus. Therefor it fell to me to take matters into my own hands. I made up my own version of D&D that I could play by myself. Of course there was a conflict of interest with me being my own dungeon master, but I didn't