The man saw them dribble from the tree line as though the woods drooled them out of its maw. They walked as straight as the recently injured, dragging limbs and staggering over roots and stumps. The fading twilight was giving into a deep moonless blackness that only November could produce. They wore rags and scrambled over the crunch of dead leaves.
They had tacos.
Where they came from was undoubtedly the hips of hell herself, birthed a fully realized nightmare onto our plane. But where they got the tacos, the man could not say. They stumbled on, uncoordinated but cradling their precious tortilla feasts. Taco seasoning caught the breeze and carried the smells of grilled onions and carne asada to the man’s nostrils, mixed with the earthy tones of dust and grit from a tomb.
I made a few stops on the way back to the nice side of Beverly Boulevard. Schwab’s Pharmacy. Photo processing place. I was cramming down a light dinner of hot dogs and onions with a Bromo chaser from Tail O’ the Pup when the phone on my car rang.
“What’ll they think of next?” I asked to the giant hot dog-shaped novelty restaurant as I answered the phone. “Harryhausen,” I said warily.
“Mister Harryhausen,” said Papa Bear, “They have my son.” I was worried about that. Seems I’d been followed. Whether they tailed me to the King Eddy or picked up Baby Bear off a tip off from Glenallen wasn’t important. “They’ve left a ransom note.” The mob wanted their dough and had their hooks in the Bear family.
“Mister Bear, I’m going to get your son back, safe and sound. I have a cunning plan that will fully justify the recommendation given to you by not one, not two but three little pigs. First, I need a couple of things…” Continue reading →
I splashed through gritty puddles that littered the alleyways even though it hadn’t rained in weeks. Baby Bear wasn’t hard to shadow. Knocked over trashcans, broken glass and other detritus made a descriptive trail. I followed him a couple blocks east and found myself in the middle of a shantytown.
Sid Row. Last refuge of the desperate. The décor was early American rat’s nest. It smelled of vomit and barbecued shoe leather. Times were tough. The residents weren’t just junkies and boozehounds. They were honest folk on the nut, and these makeshift tents and corrugated metal huts stretched out for blocks. If I didn’t find Baby soon, I’d lose him.
Once upon a time I was sitting in my office on Fairfax reading a racing form.
My name’s Harryhausen and I’m a dick. A detective, that is. I’m also a
cyclops. Six-foot two, eye of blue, that’s me.
Business was slow, so I’d given my girl the day off. That’s was two years
ago. I was thinking about closing up shop for the day and saying hello to the
bottle of bourbon I keep in the bottom drawer of my desk when my phone
rang. I’d forgotten I had a phone. I found it under a pile of newspapers and
answered on the fifth ring.
Last month I was given the opportunity to participate in a fund raiser for Sci-Fest LA, a festival of one-act, science fiction plays here in Los Angeles. Started in 2014, the Hollywood Reporter christened the inaugural festival, “An inspired notion,” and concluded that “After seeing the First Annual Sci-Fest, rest assured you’ll be hoping for a Second Annual Sci-Fest.”
Well, the second annual festival is here. And I was asked to participate by contributing some original artwork to a fundraiser Saturday, January 17. This show is a one night only performance of Orson Welles’s War of the Worlds to be performed by great actors from various Star Trek incarnations including Michael Dorn, Wil Wheaton and Walter Koenig! They and several others will be performing the one-act play of Welles’s version of the H.G. Wells masterpiece and then signing artwork from me and six other artists, which will then be auctioned off.
If you’re in Los Angeles this weekend, check it out at the Acme Theater. It’s a small space and seats are limited.
Shades and Shadows Reading Series at the North Hollywood Lit Crawl! “It’s literature, but with monsters!”
Hey everybody! Steve and I will be appearing at BlastOff Comics on Wednesday, October 22 where I’ll be reading an excerpt from The Other Side of the Fence. It’s part of the Shades and Shadows Reading Series for the LA Lit Crawl! I’ve read for Shades and Shadows before and it was such a great experience. This time I’ll be joined by 4 other authors all reading excerpts work in horror or science fiction or dark fantasy. And we’ll be reading at Blastoff Comics, a beautiful comic store in the arts district in North Hollywood. Check out the LA Lit Crawl website for a full list of the events that night. Shades and Shadows starts at 7pm.
It should be a great night for all you horror fans gearing up for Goth Christmas!