October 2006 Archives

By the time you read this, there will be less than 24 hours remaining in the greatest October 2006 to ever grace any of the multitude of possible realities. Time and fate have converged to deliver the awesome power of Unloosen Awareness Month, but alas, these two forces will also serve as its terminus.

In order to help you cope with Awareness-free months ahead, we're designating this day, October 31, a day of mourning and remembrance. Grab a few boxes of tissue, the DVD-R with all of the telephone company commercials you TIVO'd, and your favorite "blankie" and cry the day away. Sit in front of your computer and read Unloosen. Wring from its pages the last drops of Awareness October has to offer. Ask the universe, "Why, oh why must you make October and Unloosen Awareness Month end? Why do you rob me of spectacular surprises and events, like the return of both Joe Blevins and Stuart Gimble? How can you, deep, wise universe, be so cruel as to crush dreams of Awareness being delivered to every man, woman, and child alive? Curse you, vast everything!"

Or you could just go to some Halloween party, because apparently THAT'S happening today, too.

Vote 0 Votes

For the remorseful among you who failed to celebrate the seventh through the tenth of Unloosen Awareness Month, relief has arrived. October 30th is here and along with it comes the fifth "Dress Like Millard Fillmore Day" of the Awareness Month calendar. On this special day, we focus on the early days of Mr. Fillmore and we invite you to join us by sporting the attire of his youth. For inspiration, we include this anecdote:

Unloosen's Presidential soul brother Millard Fillmore has lived a long, intriguing life filled to the brim with excitement. In his early years, Mr. Fillmore enjoyed frolicking in the bucolic countryside amongst the cornfields, rolling hills, and Cracker Barrel restaurants. Chiefest among his youthful passions was mini-coach riding. In the photo below, young Millard and his 18th century girlfriend, Shasta, are guided on a mini-coach adventure by former Fillmore houseboy and fellow immortal, Dick Clark.


Shasta would later comment that the music Dick Clark played during their quaint expedition "had a good beat" and that she could "dance to it." She was, in fact, so inspired by the sounds Clark provided that she later pursued a career as a professional dancer, a career that lead her to a lifetime of extra work in acclaimed films like Xanadu, Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo, and most recently, You Got Served. Clark also chose a life in the entertainment industry. He went on to become a big-time TV producer, rolling out thought-provoking, insightful programming like, All-American Ultra Quiz, Puttin' on the Hits, and When Stars Were Kids.

Vote 0 Votes

You do not know how wonderful it was to learn that I, Rick DeMott, was celebrated as one of the "other" guys on Unloosen.com. It is so true that I could not handle the fame and recognition that Unloosen thrust upon me and so left the world wide web to become a paparazzi.

When my Hollywood friends learned of my Unloosen honor they too wanted to join in on the fun.


Here's me telling Toby to pose like distinguished Millard Fillmore.

With the word out more of my Hollywood friends will want to be featured on Unloosen soon too.

Vote 0 Votes

October's final days are marching in, signaling the end of the parade of Unloosen Awareness Month events. Where would Unloosen be without the seven people who read it semi-weekly? We're not really sure either, but we dedicate two special days to these kind folks, the Unloosen connoisseurs. Today, Friday the 27th and tomorrow, Saturday the 28th are for you, friends of Unloosen.


Henry, a connoisseur of bushy facial hair, investigates the Wilford Brimley-esque mustache of a small yet defiant Henry.

Vote 0 Votes

Would Unloosen Awareness Month be complete without a few words from esteemed writer extrordinaire and malcontent Stuart Gimble? He doesn't think so and to prove it, Mr. Gimble's emerged from retirement to entertain and enlighten us on this, Awareness Month's Stuart Gimble Day.

'Twas a dewy Sunday morning, nary 'fore dawn broke, that a rapping at my door I did hear. The racket stirred me and lifted me from my favorite reading chair, Good Brown Donald IV. Something compelling lived in that knocking sound, an urgency and anxiety that begged, "Answer me, dear Gimble, for behind your door rests matters of extreme import." My mind, still foggy from a sumptuous slumber, wondered if it was in fact the fair maiden, the flower of the library world, my lover Helen. Nay, it could not be for she lay resting in my chamber. Yes, Gimble does keep his mistress about the house, and a pleasant house guest she is.

I approached the door wondering all the while who this knocking belonged to, what specter or soul was its very source, and what burned the fire of this rousing sound within the man's belly? My hand held handle, unlatched the portal, and with courage and gusto I threw it open to face the world outside and the man who called on me.

Vote 0 Votes

One of the most popular Pork Pony stories ever produced was a group effort spoofing performance art. It's been away far too long. Unloosen Awareness Month revives our mock requiem for a long-gone boom box. Youth be warned: there's a bit of explicit language. Photos by Alex Kinnan and Jack Anderer.

Recently, the performance art duo of Ernest Tremor and abeISS experienced a horrible loss: their boom box and long-time compadre Lenoxx Sound ceased to function. What you are about to experience is a transcription (with photos) of the enlightening and, well, interesting eulogy they delivered at their "funeral" for the aforementioned sound system.

Vote 0 Votes

It's hard to celebrate Unloosen Awareness Month without recognizing Pork Pony, the website that started it all. Be warned, this one's long.


Pork Pony was the precursor to Unloosen, a raucous collection of absurd, comedic, and surreal stories, bizarre images, advice, reviews, and commentary. It died a surprising and untimely death in January 2004. This is its story.

Vote 0 Votes

Some people who visit Unloosen and participate in Unloosen Awareness Month insist on asking lengthy, probing questions about the "other" guys who've written stuff for this incredible website. What happened to Ed Darrin, Mike Wargo, David Kendall, Frog, Jason Kornblatt, Rick DeMott, and A.S. Albright?

Honestly, not everyone is cut out for the fame and glamour Unloosen drenches its contributors in. But this won't stop us from celebrating the greatness they've brought to Unloosen, so in honor of all of those "other," silent members of our team, we say, "Thank you for giving us stuff. Here, have a day."

Let these hibernating men know you care about what they've given us by delving into their work, patting them on the back, and buying them a job-well-done beverage of their choice. Who knows? It may rouse them from their deep, creation-free slumber.

Vote 0 Votes

Here's one specifically for an old friend of mine, Jeff AKA Dr. Hot Lunch. This is not too far from his childhood home in east-central PA. Notice the care these cultured folks have put into the presentation of this "Metal Mementos" installation, meticulously constructed on their front yard. They deserve an NEA grant if nothing else. Keep making PA beautiful, lawn artists.

Vote 0 Votes

Today, Unloosen Awareness Month honors Chris Leavens, editor and creator of Unloosen, with his own day.

On February 24, 1976, Chris Leavens was born. 200 years previous to his birth, a gang of rebels wearing powdered wigs created a country called the United States of America with Mr. Leavens in mind. As Benjamin Franklin, the best President in the history of our nation, said so eloquently, "This 'U.S. of A.' will provide Christopher Leavens, our future's greatest hope for entertainment and the cook behind some of the most kick-ass hot wings known to man, both a safe and joyous homeland and legions of fans who will stream into their local shopping malls to buy T-shirts emblazoned with his likeness. Jefferson, was that a run-on?"

As we now know, our country has failed one half of its intended mission. Hot Topics throughout the nation feel an emptiness and they don't know why. Where are the Chris Leavens bobble-heads? The Chris Leavens signature milk tumblers? What about the Chris Leavens color-changing puffy stickers?

Does Chris Leavens sit around and mope and cry about these things? No sir/madam! He soldiers on daily, and, head held high he dreams up more bizarre and useless information with which to pummel the masses. Sometimes he even showers.

Help Chris Leavens help the U.S.A. achieve the greatness our Founding Fathers foresaw 230 years ago by celebrating Unloosen Awareness Month's Chris Leavens Day. Read some of Chris's stories or look at some of the pictures he's taken with his camera. Let him live in your heart and then maybe one day in the future, he'll live on your shirt, only in screen-printed or iron-on form.

Vote 0 Votes

Ah, yes Friday. For those of us who aren't leather fetishists, it's the beginning of 2.33 days of bondage-free existence, a 56 hour long sigh. This evening, businessmen, computer programmers, part-time secretaries, and longshoremen will clock out at 5:00 p.m. and a special smile will wiggle its way onto their faces. This isn't just your ordinary Friday. No sir. This is one of Unloosen Awareness Month's chiefest Fridays: Craig J. Clark Day, or to the initiated and lazy, TGICJCD.

The nurses and Amway salesmen of the world will, as usual, converge on their local Chilis to suck down a variety of fruit-flavored margaritas, but instead of griping about the frustrations of the work place and gossiping about Todd's "butt pants," these corporate soldiers will engage in sparkling, witty discourse about Craig J. Clark's stunning body of work both here on Unloosen and on his own website, Dada. Then they'll get down!

Let the ultimate Friday infect you by spending your spare moments today (even your bathroom moments) reading the words that spilled from Craig's own hands. You'll be doing both Craig and yourself a "solid."

Vote 0 Votes

Gary pulled up to his normal spot in front of the store. He was opening supervisor, so he could have the pick of any spot in the lot, but he always took one some distance from the door. “Because the good spots are for the paying customers,” he would tell any employee who parked closer than he did. Besides, a nice walk never hurt anybody.

As he got out of the car, he noticed he was not alone. Some early birds were stumbling around in front of the store. Strangely enough, none of them appeared to have driven there. Well, too bad for them, Gary thought, because they didn’t open for another hour.

“Hey, you know we open at ten, right?” he asked as he passed one of them. He didn’t see it turn and make a grab for him with a gnarled hand.

Vote 0 Votes

For the rest of this week, Unloosen Awareness Month focuses on those few humans brave enough to create in the name of Unloosen. One such person is called Tom Weaver. Weaver writes with a sort of regularity that wards off the need for verbal Metamucil, but for some reason, he's actually been a little quiet lately. Is he losing his spark? Has he shacked up with some awesome babe who makes him cookies while he watches Burt Reynolds and Chuck Norris movies? Or is Weaver dead? I mean, that's a picture of Weaver. He kind of looks dead.

No. None of these. In that photo, Weaver's just resting his eyes and in real, every-day life, he's actually working on a big giant book filled with the things that spray from his head (not including snot, spit, vomit, or tears). For your enjoyment, he offers a selection from this book on this day to tease you and make you wish you were him or, at the very least, allowed in the same state as him, you crazy Weaver stalker.

Vote 0 Votes

Pauline stared out of the window of the bus, primed for a new experience, but wonderfully bored at the moment. The road was without curves, without pitch, as even a pothole would be a blessed turn of events. At a point in her life where the world was hers, she randomly picked a town and decided to investigate it firsthand. The uncertainty of the situation was uplifting. The hope that one day she would feel as if she belonged somewhere gave her tiresome life meaning. She longed to grow roots but had yet to find suitable soil.

The only thing that caught her eye along the way was an abandoned car. It did not seem particularly interesting to her, as it was unattended, though a bit of smoke still emanated from the interior, slowly creeping out of the driver's open window. Pauline decided to turn her attention to the back of the seat directly in front of her, as anything would be just as entertaining as what is happening outside. She studied the cracks in the portions of the seat that housed old, sun-baked vinyl, making objects come to life in her mind. A frowning face, a crooked star, a guitar and so forth and so on.

Vote 0 Votes

At age sixteen, most ordinary American youth have dreams of cars and driving cars. Our very own Chris Woodward is no ordinary American youth. Upon turning sixteen in 2001, Woodward was asked by his parents, "What brand of automobile would you like to sport about town in? Bentley? Maybach? Or does our favorite son want Grandpa's prized Duesenberg?"

Woodward pretended to contemplate his parents' question for a moment, but he already knew his answer. "Mum, Poppa, I want to relieve myself of this aristocratic life, give up my future Earldom, and write short comedic stories for a website that exists on some rarely-traveled back alley of the new-fangled Internet."

His parents gasped, but young Woodward continued:

"I care not of the childish concerns and materialistic desires attached to automobiles. I don't want my license to drive; nay, I want my license to write!" With this statement, Woodward thrust his hand toward the heavens and a bolt of lightning met it, leaving no scars or permanent brain damage, just a small ID card that read, "Christopher Alabaster Woodward IX, Breaker of the Woodward Lineage and Rebel for Life has been granted this License to Write."

After that day, his parents forcibly adopted one of the kids from the TV show Home Improvement and made him their favorite son. Woodward was relegated forever to second place.

In celebration of Woodward's choice and the many great works he's provided us over the last five years, take a little time out of your day today and become Aware of his work.

Vote 0 Votes

Author's Note: When brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm traveled throughout Germany collecting oral-history folktales during the early 1800s, they actually did their job too well and accumulated many more stories than they could possibly hope to publish. The following is one of the tales the Grimms left on the "cutting room floor," so to speak. This story has been traced to the small German village of Kudgel, which the brothers Grimm visited in 1812. Recently discovered among Wilhelm's private papers in a folder marked "Unpromising Miscellanea," it is published here for the first time.

There once lived a humble woodcutter and his enormous wife in a small cottage in the forest. Their lives were empty and desolate, for they had no children to call their own. As a youth, the near-sighted woodsman had mistaken a witch's leg for an elm and had used it for kindling. Enraged, the witch put a curse upon the woodsman, telling him he would never father a child by natural means and would have "plenty of problems" if he tried to adopt. The woodsman tried to reason with the witch, even offering to pay half the cost of a replacement leg, but the witch would not listen.

And so, all these years later, the witch's curse still held, and the woodsman and his wife were without children. Each night, the wife would kneel at the foot of the bed and pray aloud.

"Oh! How wonderful it would be to have a child! It would give me something to occupy my waking hours until television is invented!"

Vote 0 Votes

Unloosen Awareness Month is about more than just simply making every single living human aware that Unloosen exists; it's also about sharing special knowledge with loved ones and not-so-loved ones. To help celebrate the "What Would Henry Do?" portion of Awareness Month, we've drilled a hole into the deepest core of our fact reserve and mined this nugget of Henry-related wisdom:

Believe it or not, the movie Field of Dreams was originally about a gang of Henries mysteriously appearing in an Iowa cornfield to form the single largest parade of Uncle Sam stilt walkers ever known to man. The production still below, taken before the original script was heaved onto the scrap pile, shows a scene in which one of the stilt-walking Henries is "pantsed" by a pair of mischievous young Henries. Those devilish little scamps! Henry's going to give them what for!


The original script also featured Kevin Costner road-tripping with Darth Vader in a pair of Shriner cars, not a VW van. In the frame of film below, Costner and the recently unmasked Vader are cheered on by adoring Americans as they make their way to the magically surreal Henry gathering in Iowa.


Predictably, the studio figured the concept of a record-breaking parade of human-faced fruit dressed as tall Uncle Sams too "strange," "disturbing," and "non-basebally" to work, so they rewrote the whole thing to be about a sport and the ghost sports guys who liked to play it.

Vote 0 Votes

I'll keep this short and sweet. The long-absent Mr. Joe Blevins sent an email message our way, so in celebration of Unloosen Awareness Month's Joe Blevins Day -- October 13 -- here is that message in its entirety:


I have found out through the usual channels that October 13 is a day devoted to my whereabouts. Rest assured, I am alive and relatively well. My creative pursuits have not ceased, contrary to rumors. In fact, I have devoted all my spare time these last four years to completing my literary masterwork, my magnum opus, if you will. After countless hours sweating over revised drafts, I feel I am now ready to unveil this work in honor of my special day. Here is the story in its entirety, tastefully left untitled:

The famous monsters of filmdom were gathered together for a reunion in Transylvania one evening not long ago. Dracula, the Wolf Man, and the Creature of the Black Lagoon were all in attendance. In a secluded corner of the room, the Frankenstein Monster and the Invisible Man stood chatting.

“So,” said the Invisible Man, his transparent head and limbs wrapped in gauze, his torso outlined by a velvet smoking jacket, “how is the Bride of Frankenstein these days?”

“She’s fine, thanks” replied the Monster. “ How’s the Invisible Woman?”

“Oh, I stopped seeing her.”

Vote 0 Votes

Just who is this Millard Fillmore character and what exactly does he have to do with October, the most awesome month and Unloosen Awareness Month?

Millard Fillmore held the political office called President of the United States of America. He was the only President to be known as "The Thirteenth President of the United States of America." He did a really good job.

Brought to Earth aboard a space-proof hovercraft in 54 B.C., Fillmore was born on the steamy planet called Venus. Although his parents attempted to steer him toward a career in investment banking, little Millard fancied himself an inventor. In the year 437 A.D., his rebellious nature took him to the state of Michigan where he invented something he called the "car." After numerous patent applications and the subsequent inventions of the license plate, auto insurance, and the pine tree air freshener, Fillmore's incredible "car" finally debuted in 492 A.D., but no one knew how to invent gasoline so it sat on blocks outside a mobile home in northern Alabama for nearly fourteen centuries before being used.*

Vote 0 Votes

More than likely, you've already read the Unloosen Awareness Month calendar of events at least 73 times, but just in case you've been too "busy" or "illiterate" to take it all in, this message shall serve as a reminder. Only one day -- Friday, October 6 -- remains in the golden-yellow phase of the month.

During these days you were/are obligated to write to a senator or representative and plead to have Unloosen Awareness Month officially recognized by the government of our great and free nation. May we suggest you write a letter or electronic-mail message to Senator Sam Brownback? He's a warm, caring man and a good listener. While you're at it, slap him a written high-five for his strong anti-stem-cell research stance. I mean, come on. We all know stem-cell research is useless, right?

Vote 0 Votes

Help those less fortunate than you. Add a little Unloosen Awareness to someone's life by pointing them in our direction. Confused as to how to practice Awareness? Here are some suggestions.

Also, the calendar of events is partially completed and available for viewing and sharing. Click it for the big version.


Vote 0 Votes
One Henry uses common kitchen utensils to scare another Henry into Unloosen Awareness.

October is Unloosen Awareness Month and this means you should already be scheduling your month around the soon-to-be-available calendar of events which -- swear to God -- will be published later this week. Until then, you should follow these simple instructions for the first two days of the Unloose schedule.

October 1 & 2: October 1 is over. Hopefully you instinctually delved into the Unloosen archives and read aloud from them to a friend or group of friends, because that's what you were supposed to do on October 1 and 2. If not, administer some sort of self punishment and spend the entirety of October 2 reciting your favorite Unloosen tale in a bad Eastern-European accent.

Also, e-mail your friends and let them know that Unloosen Awareness Month has rolled in like a mighty thunder. Help them be Aware.

More Awareness information is on the way.

Vote 0 Votes

Monthly Archives

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from October 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

September 2006 is the previous archive.

November 2006 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.