The Strange & Spooky World Is Now On Instragram

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For the longest time, I fought Instagram. I had no interest in joining, simply because I didn’t see the point. To be honest, the whole thing felt a little silly and, well, pompous. Sure, people seem to enjoy it, but I’ve never been the kind of guy who felt the need to upload pics of his turkey on rye with the message “getting ready for lunch #boyamihungry #luvturkey #ireallythinkpeoplecareaboutwhatieatforlunch”.

But the more I looked at Instagram, the more it seemed to be something I could use to sort of give everyone a quick glimpse inside my strange and spooky world. I know you’re going to find this hard to believe, but not everything in my life is blog worthy. Shocking, but true!

What Instagram allows me to do is show you all a little peek behind the curtain, if you will. Like this picture, which is a random shot of some of the items from my Strange & Spooky Museum that I recently unpacked:

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And then there was this strange little picture, which is related to my latest paranormal project. I uploaded it to Instagram and it promptly blew up, with everyone wondering aloud what the heck it meant. What do you think it means?

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Anyway, If you’d like to follow along, you can find me lurking on Instagram here. I’m only getting started, but there’s already some strange and spooky images on there. Just don’t expect to see any pics of turkey sandwiches…unless they look really, really weird.

You can also access my Instagram site by clicking on the photo in the “Latest Instagram Upload” feed, which is over on the bottom left side of the very page you’re reading now!

 

 

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Despite Popular Belief, I Wasn’t Drinking In The Author Alley!

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So here’s the photo they chose to use of me in Cleveland.com’s recent review of last Saturday’s Author Alley. I couldn’t be happier!

Now, most people would be horrified if they found a picture of themselves online, looking like that. Not me. I think it’s the coolest thing ever, especially since it was taken during a book signing. You see, I’ve always felt uncomfortable at book signings, including ones that have multiple authors at it. Don’t get me wrong, I love attending them and have met some wonderful people and authors at these events, including the Author Alley. It’s just that I always end up feeling like something of an outsider at these things, usually because people don’t know what to make of me.

Put it this way; sandwiched between novels, collections of poetry, and children’s books, you’ll find me–the weirdo who believes in ghosts and likes to run through the woods looking for Bigfoot.

On top of that, all the other authors are so professional, telling people who stop by what the inspiration for their book was and handing out professionally-printed press kits and business cards. Sure, I have business cards and flyers. But if someone comes to my table, I’m more interested in finding out if they’ve ever seen the Loveland Frog or if they’ve yet to see the Collection of Swallowed Objects at the Allen County Museum in Lima, Ohio. Most of the time, I don’t even mention my books. The way I see it, the books are there on the table. If people are interested, they’ll pick one up. If not, no biggie. I’m really just there to share my stories and talk about weird stuff.

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Which brings me back to that picture. While I certainly get that since I’m a “published author”, there are certain preconceived notions around how I should appear and act, let’s face it; people are already bummed when they find out that Weird Willis doesn’t drive around in a hearse or live in a haunted house. I think if they were to meet me for the first time and I was just sitting there quietly, they’d be really disappointed. And so would I.

Oh and for the record, my pose was the inspiration of my daughter, Courtney. Prior to leaving me to check out all the Larchmere Festival had to offer, Courtney gave me her traditional kiss and hug, along with her mini-pep talk to “go talk to the big kids about ghosts.” When I asked Courtney what I should do when the adults came to talk to me, she responded “be scary” and then proceeded to show me how to do just that. For the record, I think I nailed it.

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You can read the entire Cleveland.com article, complete with aforementioned Weird Willis photo, by clicking here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ONW: Unhappy With Hair Cut, Man Punches Great Clips Employee

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Let me begin by saying that I don’t condone violence. In fact, when I first started reading the news report about how Jimmy Nguyen became so upset over his hair cut at a Chillicothe Great Clips that he decided to punch the hairdresser, my blog was the last thing on my mind. But once my eyes settled on the photo that accompanied the article, I knew it needed to be added to the Ohio News Of The Weird.

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–via NBC4i.com

In case you haven’t guessed, that’s Jimmy Nguyen’s mug shot, taken after he was arrested and charged with assaulting a Great Clips employee. The assault was apparently set off by Nguyen’s disapproval of the hair cut he had just received. But here’s my question: what hair?

For the life of me, I’m not seeing what Nguyen is so upset about. His sides look nice, trim and even, too. I think I might even detect a hint of product in there. As for the rest of his head, well, it’s not like Nguyen gave the stylist a lot to work with.

Of course, the mug shot happened after the alleged botched hair cut, so maybe Nguyen sauntered into that Chillicothe Great Clips with a full head of hair and got totally scalped. If that’s what went down, Nguyen would’ve had a valid reason to be so angry if he originally had hair like, oh, I don’t know, Fletch:

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OK, maybe Fletch is a bad example. You see, Nguyen is just an average Joe like me, with average hair. Fletch’s hair was the thing of legend and he was able to use it to his advantage. If you remember, Fletch was actually 6’5″–with the afro, 6’9″.

Either way, if you’re that worried about how your hair looks, you might want to re-think that plan of walking into a random Great Clips unannounced (“no appointment necessary”) and handing your “$10 hair cut” coupon to the next available stylist.

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Go here to read the full NBC4 article

Want more Ohio News Of The Weird? Visit The Archives here

To see Fletch in action, click below

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When Does The Author Alley Open This Saturday?

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AuthorAlley-art-2014-m Glad you asked! The Author Alley will be open from noon until 4:00 pm this Saturday, July 5th. The Larchmere Festival, which the Author Alley is part of, will run from 10:00 am until 5:00 pm. But participating authors, including yours truly, will only be available in the Alley between the hours of noon and 4:00 pm, so please plan your day accordingly. I will have copies of Weird Ohio, The Big Book of Ohio Ghost Stories, Weird Indiana, and Haunted Indiana available for purchase, but all sales are being handled by the Festival. In other words, after 4:00 pm, I won’t have any copies with me.

Of course, with all the cool things to see and do at the Festival, I’m sure I’ll be wandering around, looking to score a shrunken head for my Strange & Spooky Museum, so feel free to tag along. Hope to see you all Saturday! For more information on the Author Alley, go here. Or go here to find out more about the Larchmere Festival.