Category So Terrible It’s Amazing

Who loves bad art?

Poll #1342550 IMPORTANT POLL Open to: All, detailed results viewable to: All, participants: 32

What is your first thought upon viewing this masterpiece?

Is this so bad it’s good, or so bad it’s bad?

View Answers Bad? It’s amazing! 3 (9.4%) 

It’s awesomely bad. 14 (43.8%)

It’s ‘Batman & Robin’ level bad–nothing at all redeeming about it. 8 (25.0%)

It’s the worst thing I’ve ever seen. 5 (15.6%)

…mommy. 2 (6.2%)

If I was to buy this, would it affect your perception of me?

View Answers Yes. I’d think your home is more awesome due to its presence. 8 (25.8%) 

Yes. I’d want to know what room you keep it in, in order to avoid it forever. 11 (35.5%)

Yes. I know you like trash culture, but this is JUST. TOO. MUCH. What’s next, collecting Tarot comics? 11 (35.5%)

Nope. 7 (22.6%)

Ticky box! 12 (38.7%)

Wisconsin Day Four: The White Trash Wedding of the Century

Unless you are John Waters, only occasionally in your life will you be called to bear witness to a true trash spectacle. And when that moment arises, it is your solemn duty to absorb every detail so that you may regale others with the story for years to come.

Friends, I stand here before you today to tell you the tale of the White Trash Wedding of the Century.

I was not invited to this wedding but attended as the guest of someone else who likely should not have been invited, either. You see, at different times, both of us had dated the groom. We both determined that sometimes people are ‘touched by an angel’; only in this instance, we were both ‘touched by a moron’. He had actually gone as far as proposing to Nicki while high on whippets, because nothing quite says “I will love and cherish you forever” like concentrated inhalants that strike down large swaths of brain cells in an instant. Lesser girls might have taken those glazed eyes for true love, flashed him a boob and then squealed yes, but Nicki, being a different caliber of lady entirely, decided that she COULD do worse, but only if she went cross-species.

You might think we’re being harsh, bitter bitches in our disdain, and you would be wrong. Here, I’ll prove it to you.

*This is a guy who proclaims to be an enlightened Taoist, but is seriously pondering getting a “bitchin’ tattoo of the Archangel Michael fighting Lucifer”.

*This is a guy who cannot construct a basic sentence in his native language yet somehow felt qualified to pursue a doctorate; when he was rejected by schools that felt differently, he placed the blame for the rejection on coming from a ‘broken home’. I didn’t personally know that when your parents got divorced well after you’d already moved out that it still counts as coming from a broken home. I’m looking forward to using this new scapegoat to my advantage. “I’m sorry that I missed that work deadline; I come from a broken home.”

*This is a guy who lists ‘tacos’ and ‘his cat’ as interests in an online profile before his wife. He also lists Jesus as one of his personal heroes. What?!? I thought he was a Taoist! The entire list consists of Jesus, Wolverine, Ghandi, Socrates, Benkei, Abraham Lincoln, and ‘Those who fought for us in America to save our freedom (what we have of it at least) and rights’. So I guess, Civil War soldiers. But most importantly, Jesus.

*This is a guy who refused (and still refuses) to sign the birth certificate for his daughter without having a lawyer look at it, because he’s afraid it might make him financially responsible for the kid that was apparently immaculately conceived, as that’s the only feasible reason to NOT man up and admit he’s the father. Since he can’t afford a lawyer, he still hasn’t signed it. That, and maybe he figures broken homes beget broken homes. I’m not an expert.

Even though Nicki set the bride up with the groom, for some reason, the bride still remains her friend, and insisted that Nicki be invited though Ben objected. Mandy won, and soon Nicki received this gem in the mail:

I knew as soon as I saw the South Park characters in the likeness of the bride and groom that I was being called to witness a major trash event. I was so certain of this that I flew across the country so that I could have first-hand memories of this event with me for the rest of my natural life.

So on Saturday, October 18th, Nicki and I put on our finest attire, prepared for an evening of velveeta and sausages from a can, and drove to the ‘Polish League of American Veterans Hall’. But how does one truly prepare for such a momentous occasion, knowing that you’ll be coming face to face with history? We arrived a few minutes before the reception was due to start (no one was invited to the wedding except family, and with six people standing up on either side and two people in the audience, I’m sure it made for a funny picture at the zoo. Oh yes, I neglected to mention: They got married at the Racine Zoo, home of the Mellzah-molesting camel. Because nothing other than whippets says ‘I will love you and cherish you forever’ like the wafting smell of large animal feces.) and determined it wouldn’t be right if the people who showed up to snark the wedding arrived earlier than any nice, legitimate guests, so we decided to prepare by having a drink at the bar across the street beforehand. A rather large drink at the bar beforehand.

Thirty minutes and thirty-two ounces of hard liquor later, we darted through traffic and into the Polish League of American Veterans Hall, and waited for the wedding party to show. And waited. And waited. And waited.

And then we noticed this sheet of goldenrod-colored delight at each folding table seat, and the grand trash ceremonies began. I have endeavored on this occasion to only snark at the groom.


I’m pretty certain that someone’s grandma doesn’t need to know anything about Jeremy Bush’s beast, and may, in fact, be happier living in ignorance.

She might also have been happier if she had been struck suddenly with blindness moments before the entrance of the wedding party, because no one with 20/20 vision left the event without cursing its clarity and precision, even at a distance.

The groomsmen were clearly instructed to wear just ‘a shirt and tie’ without respect to color or style, and thus strutted in with one powder blue shirt, one electric blue shirt, one lucifer’s ass red shirt, one beige vest, one white shirt, and one poufy ren-faire shirt. I remain surprised that no one decided to sport the Canadian Tuxedo: jeans, a denim shirt and a jean jacket.

The groom elected to appear at his own wedding, in photos he was paying for, with hair bleached so blond, it appears in safety gear catalogs directly behind ‘safety orange’, and a goatee comprised of 7 carefully-spirit-gum-applied pubic hairs.


When the lights were turned off in the hall, his hair glowed in the dark.

I felt awfully sorry for Mandy and her rather unfortunate, unflattering dress, but she made her own bed when she asked one of the groomsmen’s recent, unproven hobby seamstress girlfriend to make her wedding dress, and a dress for her daughter. This hobby seamstress girlfriend took on the job, and then sent the bride a text message on the day of the wedding to let her know that neither dress was done. After much freaking out, the hobby seamstress girlfriend finished the wedding dress bare minutes before Mandy needed to put it on for the ceremony. As she fastened the zipper in the back, hobby seamstress girlfriend proudly mentioned that she’d left Mandy ‘some room to eat tonight’. She certainly did–Mandy can gain forty pounds and the dress will fit better than it did on the day of her wedding.


God, that hair.

After dinner, Ben’s sister ran up to me to say that she had been excited to learn I was coming because she reads my blog.

Whenever someone approaches me and tells me that, and I hadn’t previously been aware they knew I had a blog, I will freeze in place. I will stand perfectly still while alarm bells scream in my head and I think about anything that I’ve said that might cause me to have to apologize. Liz either hadn’t noticed that I was referring to that day as the White Trash Wedding of the Century or she agreed with me, but I wasn’t about to make any inquiries.




And then there was an excessive amount of bump and grind on the dance floor, and then glowsticks were busted out and THEN little kids started showing their butts to everyone and grandmas were hurling in the bathroom, and dudes got drunk and started burning cigarette holes in everything, and the air started to reek of sweat, singed polyester, and love.

We learned some juicy tidbits that night, namely that Ben and his new wife are still going to live in grandma’s basement, and that a flamboyant drag queen once mistook Ben for a bull dyke, and after a few drinks, the bride told us exactly what she thought of hobby seamstress girlfriend, and then after a few more drinks, we learned the secret that would drive us to conclude that the evening had reached its zenith, and that no more schadenfreude could be derived.

They were doing the ‘dollar dance’ portion of the evening, which is something I had never heard of before. If you’ve never heard of it, it’s essentially a cash-grab by the bride and groom where the guests line up and pay a dollar or more to dance with either of them. I elected not to participate, but Nicki lined up to dance with the bride. And while they were dancing the dance that Nicki paid for, the bride enhanced Nicki’s dancing experience by whispering to her that she’d needed to have her bridesmaids cut the crotch out of her pantyhose because she’d urinated in them. Even as the behavior of the guests devolved, it’s unlikely that anything could top the bride wetting herself, so we excused ourselves and congratulated one another on dodging a peroxide blond bullet.

Thus ends the tale of the White Trash Wedding of the Century. I hope that you have laughed, and cried, and shouted in horror, as I have on many sleepless nights since.

Wisconsin Day Three: The Crazy House

“If this was the afterlife, he thought, it was a lot like the House on the Rock: part diorama, part nightmare.” -Neil Gaiman, American Gods

On Friday, Nicki and I went to Spring Green to visit The House on the Rock, or as I like to call it, The House That Spite Built. You see, Alex Jordan, the madman behind Spite House, fancied himself quite the architect, even claiming to be on par with Frank Lloyd Wright. Frank Lloyd Wright, on the other hand, sneeringly dismissed Jordan with “I wouldn’t hire you to design a cheese crate or a chicken coop.” Thus, Jordan decided to build a monstrous parody of Wright’s Taliesin home, also located in Spring Green. The House on the Rock was so named due to its rather unusual placement on a 60-foot chimney of rock, which forced some individual rooms to have very odd, disconcerting proportions.


The ceilings in the original house were almost universally low, which has prompted me to wonder whether Alex Jordan was an extremely short man, or if he simply did not have access to a ladder whilst he was building it–in some areas, my 5’2″ self could stand on tiptoes and smack my head on the ceiling.

There were some random, locked doors, high up on the walls, and rooms where people were intended to be seated were raised even further off of the ground so that heads would still be quite close to the ceiling, offering no respite for the claustrophobic.

During his lifetime, Alex Jordan’s friends believed he lived in abject poverty, and in a way, it was true: he never had any money because he was always spending it on more STUFF to fill his home. Every room was packed to the gills with STUFF. By no means am I a minimalist, but after a short while, even I was overwhelmed by the sheer amount of STUFF in the tours; by the end, Nicki and I were almost running through the exhibits because we just couldn’t take any more.


This musical display played the ‘Godfather’ theme on a constant loop, which may or may not make the nearby security guard feel like a macho, macho man for eight hours a day.

The standout of the tour through the original House is the Infinity Room, which projects out over the Wyoming Valley 218 feet and contains over 3,200 windows.





This room? Terrifying. Just as you peek your head over the railing to look out the glass panel on the floor to see just how far out you are, high above the treetops, you are reminded that this is someone’s homemade construction project AND of your own mortality as it sways in the wind.


I thought this statue was neat; the spiral staircase next to it was rickety and terrifying.

The original House comes to an abrupt end, and we’re pointed by a helpful wizard to tour two.


Tour two begins in the Millhouse opened in 1968, and houses way more crap than you’d believe any one human being could collect. The first rooms contain a lot of antique guns, dolls, mechanical banks, suits of armor, and so on and so forth.


I would imagine that your seriousness about a situation may increase exponentially with the number of barrels you choose to have on your gun. These guns, as you can see, are Serious Business.

Here are some suits of armor, dwarfed by a fireplace the size of my apartment:


And here is a clown bank that will surely be featured in an upcoming nightmare.


The tour continues into the ‘Streets of Yesterday’, which opened in 1971. It’s a recreation of a supposedly typical 19th century main street. The proprietors claim that this area is intentionally dim to simulate a nighttime environment, but really, the whole House is overly dark, to the point where it’s difficult to photograph anything, and additionally makes everything seem like an extended creepy dream.

344_33497463939_776_n 344_33497483939_1450_n


I want to travel back in time and feed people ‘medicinal’ tapeworms.

It was right around the ‘Streets of Yesterday’ when you could start plugging tokens into machines to make various mechanical things in the rooms start to play, and Nicki and I happened upon one titled ‘Death of a Drunkard’–this is one I’m glad we saw early in the tour as some of the mechanical things were on the disappointing side and I might not’ve been as inclined to put money into the machine later down the line.

Watch, and be amazed:

The ‘Heritage of the Sea’ opened in 1990, and features a 200ft whale battling with a giant octopus. The only thing that could make this room more awesome would be the inclusion of a tyrannosaurus standing atop the whale, screaming in triumph.

Here’s a small version of the battle, as there is nowhere in the room where you can photograph the enormous battle in its entirety. It’s simply too dark and too large.




See what I’m talking about? This thing is HUGE.


Along the sides of the room, on all three levels, they have many museum-sized model ships and other historical nautical pieces, including a large Titanic display, and Chester the Molester in a diving suit.


After the Octopus Garden is the Tribute to Nostalgia building, with even more nightmare fuel.



After Tribute to Nostalgia came the Music of Yesterday exhibit, which is one of the largest collections of animated and automated music machines.

‘Death of a Drunkard’ might’ve been the best quarter I ever spent–the best fifty cents has to go to the Mikado room. (This is not our video, but one I found on youtube, in case you were breathlessly awaiting more of our delightful commentary.)



I find it delightful that she’s peering into the rear end in front of her with obvious glee.

Shortly after this, we came to the World’s Largest Carousel:

Calliope music played: a Strauss waltz, stirring and occasionally discordant. The wall as they entered was hung with antique carousel horses, hundreds of them, some in need of a lick of paint, others in need of a good dusting; above them hung dozens of winged angels constructed rather obviously from female store-window mannequins; some of them bared their sexless breasts; some had lost their wigs and stared baldly and blindly down from the darkness.




And then there was the carousel.

A sign proclaimed it was the largest in the world, said how much it weighed, how many thousand lightbulbs were to be found in the chandeliers that hung from it in Gothic profusion, and forbade anyone from climbing on it or from riding on the animals.

And such animals! Shadow stared, impressed in spite of himself, at the hundreds of full-sized creatures who circled on the platform of the carousel. Real creatures, imaginary creatures, and transformations of the two: each creature was different. He saw mermaid and merman, centaur and unicorn, elephants (one huge, one tiny), bulldog, frog and phoenix, zebra, tiger, manticore and basilisk, swans pulling a carriage, a white ox, a fox, twin walruses, even a sea serpent, all of them brightly colored and more than real: each rode the platform as the waltz came to an end and a new waltz began. The carousel did not even slow down. “What’s it for?” asked Shadow. “I mean, okay, world’s biggest, hundreds of animals, thousands of lightbulbs, and it goes around all the time, and no one ever rides it.”





“It’s not there to be ridden, not by people,” said Wednesday. “It’s there to be admired. It’s there to be.” – Neil Gaiman, American Gods

The carousel marked the end of tour two and the beginning of tour three. It was at this point that I started to feel fatigued and overwhelmed just from looking at things; tour three’s rooms are mainly displays of things more museum-style, with less of the grandness of vision that created things like the Mikado room.


There were rooms full of dollhouses which I could appreciate for their intricate construction but I still find immeasurably creepy, particularly this one, with a figure peeping out of the attic.


Next came a series of circus rooms, with a collection totalling over one million pieces. In addition to some giant elephants, there’s a 40-piece animated circus band that plays in concert with an 80-piece orchestra, for a cacaphony of sound. It took 14 people three years to create, and has 37 miles of wiring and over 2000 motors. The room also houses a large number of mechanical displays, all of which were pushing people to buy diamonds.







‘Take Humpty Dumpty’s advice and buy that diamond now.’ ‘One of our beautiful diamonds will help.’ (With what, exactly?) ‘A beautiful diamond might persuade her.’ (But drugs in her cocktail are more of a sure bet.) ‘When the walrus speaks of diamonds, he means our beautiful gems.’ ‘One of our beautiful diamonds will help.’ (Help keep the couple inside the burning house from burning alive? WHAT?)

There were HUNDREDS of these things.

After that came another collection of guns, one of which was embedded in a prosthetic leg. If I ever lose a limb, I want my replacement to be slotted for weaponry!


After the guns came the ‘Oriental collection’, the ‘armor collection’ and the ‘crown jewel collection’, which are replicas of the Tower of London’s Crown Jewels and other assorted items of royalty. It was around this time that we began blasting through rooms; I was so overwhelmed by stuff at this point that I lost all of my social niceties and began openly laughing at a family that was yelling at their son to come take a picture with them by the Forbidden City replica RIGHT NOW.





After all of that came the Doll Carousel room, which houses not one, but TWO Doll Carousels, in case you hadn’t seen enough terrifying, dead-eyed things in one day.


One of them is riding a pirate!

Also in the doll carousel room, in a surprising contrast, was the World’s Largest Cannon, which was (again) so large, I couldn’t take one decent photo of it. Unforunately, there was no token-taking contraption that would allow you to fire said cannon–I’d probably pay a week’s salary to do it, on the condition that I get to aim it at one of the doll carousels.

ALSO in the room is a sculpture of the four horsemen of the apocalypse. Fitting, as at this point, you have seen so much crap, you’re pretty certain you’ll die at any moment.


After the four horsemen, you’re brought back around to the world’s largest carousel and immediately afterward, you’re finally expelled back into the fresh air and wandering walkways to ensure you don’t leave without passing at least one gift shop.

All in all, I enjoyed the House on the Rock as I wholeheartedly love most all roadside attractions; they give me satisfaction on a deep, lizard-brain level, but visiting once was certainly enough for me–I don’t feel a pressing need to attempt to return to view their Christmas display, full of 6,000 Santas staring with dead eyes: the one in the bathroom, watching to see if I washed my hands thoroughly was enough.