Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fear and Loathing In Horror #1: The Uqbar Horror Film and Glass Blowing Festival (or These Tentacles Were Meant For Loving You)

Recorded by Dario Del Toro
Transcribed by Nickolas Cook
(Note from the editors: The following report was transcribed from a rather garbled and bewildering MP3 file we received from our reporter in the field. Please be aware The Black Glove does not necessarily share Mr. Del Toro’s opinions or views, and we do advocate any social, political, mental, physical or emotional suggestions he may infer. Also, please be aware some of the verbiage and links he uses are NOT work safe. Read and/or click at your own risk.)

Just got into Uqbar to take in the bi-annual Horror Film and Glass Blowing Festival. Me and the gang

had a hell of a time slogging through the swampy outbacks and traipsing up several mountain passes to reach the town of Elskemccain to get to said festival.
Yes, I know: it’s a pretty strange name for a Uqbarian town, but apparently Ms. McCain is famous over this part of the world. And it’s little wonder—her assets are tremendous

I mean, have you seen this girl act? My God! Her range is amazing for one so young and innocent looking. Another goddamn Linnea Quigley in the making, in my opinion. If Spike Network doesn’t start recognizing her for their ridiculous Scream Awards soon, I’ll by God write my Congressman. That should put a bee in their bonnets.
What the hell was I saying…?
Oh, yeah, the festival. The goddamn festival.
Christ! What’s that smell?
Part of the gang is an Arabian dwarf they call Pooter. Don’t ask how he got the name. I did and he showed me. My eyes watered for two hours and the stench of damp Frito Corn Chips and Stilton cheese stuck in my nose for the rest of the day. What that little fucker eats is beyond me. My guess is Frito Corn Chips and Stilton cheese. What a diet for an Arabian dwarf. But what do I know about Arabian dwarf diets? I’m a middle aged horror writer from New York. My diet isn’t all that great either. But fucking Christ’s sake! I’ve never caused spontaneous tears with a single fart. Even when giving a carefully negotiated Dutch Oven. Sure, there was puking and screaming, but tears? Nope. Not a one.
How the hell did I get on killer farts?
(the recording becomes very garbled here; we can hear only the word ‘olives’ and then static for several seconds)
Back to this god forsaken festival…
As I sit here in this claustrophobic room they have the vulgarity to call a bar, I keep asking what negative karma did I incur to warrant having to traipse to Uqbar to watch horror films? The editor of The Black Glove hired me…well, to be more exact the son of a bitch has some incriminating photos of me in a love strangle hold with some tentacled rubber doll thing I picked up in Japan back in the 70s. Back then, Cthulhu Love Dolls all the rage in Orient. You couldn’t take a step in any decent brothel in Japan without running cheek to tentacle with one of those bastards. And let me tell you: those stoic faced Japanese business men the value of a good bunch of overly excited tentacles. I mean, Christ, look at the work of Japanese Manga master Toshio Maeda. No wonder the hyper intelligent culture has such a fascination with things-that-go-squirm; in fact, there are whole web sites devoted solely to tentacular love.
Obscene stuff. Unless you happen to be tentacled or a small Anime looking Asian school girl.
I wish that bastard bartender would turn down the tv. I wish he’d walk his limping ass back over here so I can get another one of these Scorpions.
Good for the soul, but they sure pack a wallop for the uninitiated.
Oh, fuck, I’ve gone and lost the thread of this report again.
Where was I?
I’ve got to layoff the wormwood popsicles, By God. I’m just not built for that sort of highly combustible experience anymore. Got to start small and work my way up to such hallucinatory expeditions, for Christ’s sake. Maybe suck bee’s wax off of hot stiletto heels first. Like the old days…
Uqbar…yes. I remember now. This damned Horror and Glass Blowing fiasco. I won’t cheapen the word ‘festival’ by using that term for what I’ve found here.
When we arrived a couple of hours ago, the whole town of Elskemccain was ablaze with glowing glass lanterns, blown into the shapes of spiders and skulls. I have to admit the sight is stunning. Maybe even a little unnerving. Everywhere you go, those glass fuckers are hanging over your head. I keep thinking I see them move just as I pass under, but when I turn to look, they’re just hanging there--innocent, fragile and bright. The skulls are not snarling; the spiders are not click-clacking their thin transparent legs in preparation for an unsuspecting bipedal dinner.
With Pooter in the lead (and who the hell ever thought being down wind from that little gas-filled monstrosity was a good idea? Criminally insane logic!), we cowered past the lanterns and into Elskemccain’s most fashionable hostelry, The Straub Inn. I gave half an eye to the place’s hard won elegance, and made straight for the room they like to call a bar, while Pooter went to the front desk to check us in and inflict his gaseous ravages on the general populace of Uqbar’s biggest town.
Right now, on the overhead sound system, I can hear Dave Brubeck and Paul Desmond bouncing through their most well known hit, Take Five. After four Scorpions I’m having trouble striving to take the advice of Messieurs Brubeck and Desmond.
I’m beginning to feel distinctly paranoid about the two sunglass-wearing Asians in dark business suits sitting three stools down from me.
I’m sure I can see glowing eyes from behind those cheap sunglasses.
What the fuck are they so happy about anyway?
The hotel smells of old cigars and too much vacuuming.
Where are the maids anyway?
No one is even smoking cigars.
Turns out the film festival is all SyFy original productions.
Ah, ye Gods!! What the hell did I ever do to deserve such a hellish fate?
I know they’re watching me from behind those damn shades. Squirmy little bastards.
Damn you, Nickolas Cook! I hope someone chains you down to a razor laced lounge chair and forces you to watch Cabin Fever over and over, until your goddamned eyes bleed your own blood.
Why the change, you driveling swine?
Was this some sort of evil switcharoo gambit meant to confuse the drooling Battlestar Galactica fanboys?
The official report states that network honchos were worried that people might not be able to capitalize the original SciFi logo correctly. Apparently they felt their target audience has the collective brain power of a can of CheeseWhiz, or worse, of their original programming staff, who tend, like a good can of the Whiz, to puke up the worst excuse for cheese ever invented. Watching the SyFy channel is barely better than watching a fanboy’s all rant YouTube channel.
Later, it was revealed they had yet another motive (and I suspect the real one from the start). They were not able to trademark the logo, SciFi (hey, fellas, I’ve managed to score three times on the capitalization thing; does that mean I get a prize, you greedhead fuckers?), which is the generic abbreviation for the entire speculative genre, Science Fiction. And it’s not as if the greedhead bastards could trademark a whole genre of fiction. Instead, they’ve done nothing but cheapen and desecrate the entire idea of a forward looking and thinking fiction by giving us such smart movies as Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus and genre defining programming as Who Wants To Be A Superhero?, which has to be one of the single most hideous excuses for entertainment ever conceived. Reality tv with no basis in reality? What a concept.
Damn it, those two bastards keep edging closer to me. Two stools down, one to go.
Can they read minds? Do they know I’m furious and physically sickened by SyFy Channel’s punk move?
Where is that goddamn bartender?
I hope Cook doesn’t get a wink of sleep when he finds out I’ve been taken prisoner by the Uqbarian SyFy Asian Tentacle Mafia, maybe even forced to positive reviews to their brand of cow-like dreck.
By God, that would take a lot more than four Scorpions and two glowing eyed goons to force a good call from this reviewer.
Damn it, man. Where did all those tentacles come from?

(this portion of the file is unclear, hopelessly garbled…we can only make out the words ‘nasty’ and ‘gumball’ before the audio splits off)
Bartender? Bartender?!
Turn up the tv, you gimp bastard! Destination Truth is on!

(Editor’s note: The current whereabouts of reporter Dario Del Toro are unknown. If anyone knows where he can be reached, please contact the magazine at He has been receiving strange catalogues from Asia again)

--Dario Del Toro