In Scotland and Ireland, there is a long tradition of carving lanterns from vegetables, particularly the turnip, mangelwurzel, or swede. . .
Jack o' Lantern [is a]local name for a Will-o'-the-Wisp, mainly in East Anglia and in south-west England; also spelled Jack-a-Lantern and Jacky Lantern, according to the whim of the collectors. T. Quiller Couch found that around Polperro (Cornwall) it was regarded as a pixy, and was invoked in the rhyme:
Jack o' the lantern! Joan the wad, Who tickled the maid and made her mad! Light me home, the weather's bad.
Discussion question: Given the opportunity, would you eat a mangelwurzel? Why or why not?
Round Robins are an ancient and profoundly dubious tradition at Scribal Terror.
They are collaborative fictions, written on the fly in the comments
section. ST Round Robins usually involve a character named Robin. They
usually happen around Halloween. And they usually flirt with THE DARK
We missed Robin last year, but the old bird has not died. Not strictly speaking, anyway. He is back, and
he doesn't drink . . . wine.
For the remainder of the week, we will continue the story in the
Comments section. Each person can add as many comments as they want,
but keep them relatively short (no more than three sentences or so). Be
sure you refresh the page before you contribute because we want the
story to flow. Like BLAAAAHDDDD!
Thanks to Edgar Allen Dorkafork, we have an opening:
was an overcast and clammy night, with a low chance of precipitation,
as the darkness moved in like a cold front from the north that may
result in temperatures in the low 50s. My restiveness continued, the
ghastly glow of the Weather Channel flickering in my poorly-lit abode
increased my disquiet. The grim countenance of the weather girl stared
back at me. I pondered how I had arrived at my despicable state. The
memories were patchy, like the clouds that are likely moving in on
Now, do your worst, cheeldren of the night . . .
UPDATE: The story is proceeding with all due awesomeness. We need to move toward an ending by midnight on Halloween. Then I'll put the story together from the comments section and publish it as a post. So let's have some fiendly competition. In the battle for the conclusion, will your ending be a new beginning or a last gasp?
Apparently it is indeed possible if not necessarily advisable to eat woodlice. They are crunchy and taste like fish, but you have to make sure they're dead before you eat them. Do you care to ponder the consequences of eating undead woodlice?
PS: What do you call woodlice? I grew up calling them pillbugs.
manikins, between 6 to 7 inches in length, were made from solid pieces of ivory. The arms were carved separately and are moveable. The thoracic and abdominal walls can be removed, revealing the viscera. In some manikins the internal organs are carved in the original block and are not removable, while they are formed into separate pieces that can be removed. -- National Library of Medicine
Image from Alabama Museum of the Health Sciences, The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The Voynich manuscript, which appears to date from c. 1450-1520, is a bizarre, apparently meaningless -- though lengthy -- text, handwritten on vellum with illustrations of real plants, imaginary plants, singularly unappealing bathing beauties, astronomical symbols, and obscure diagrams. The text has driven cryptographers and linguists to distraction (and given them something fun to play with) since the manuscript's acquisition by an American book dealer named Wilfrid Voynich in 1912.
Scientists have genetically modified a cat as part of an experiement that could lead to treatments for conditions like cystic fibrosis.
Named Mr Green Genes, he look likes a six-month-old cat but, under ultraviolet light, his eyes, gums and tongue glow a vivid lime green, the result of a genetic experiment at the Audubon Centre for Research of Endangered Species in New Orleans.