Presidential Candidates Endorsed By The Mystery Box

This piece was originally published November 5th, 2012.

Like many a good upstanding citizen of pop trash culture, Friday night monster movies and Saturday morning cartoons, it has always been a bit of a task for me to embrace most political candidates, yet for my entire life, ever since I was eligible, I have taken part in voting at every election.

I guess I watched Robert Redford in The Candidate a few too many times, so between that film and the fact that the majority of politicians that I have known personally have been sketchy, self serving egomaniacs out to fill their own slimy pockets, sort of makes one a bit suspicious and cynical of the whole process in general.

Still, as I write this on the eve of the next American Presidential election, I will vote and hope for the best, and wish that perhaps the winner will be a person that, if I were given the opportunity, is a person you could sit down with over a beer to talk about which Funkadelic or Rolling Stones album is best.

In keeping with the spirit of the great MAD Magazine, here then from Mystery Box H.Q. are my own “usual gang of idiots” picking some candidates we wished had won in the past or in tomorrow’s election…

Horror Host Legend Zacherley

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This piece was originally published August 13th, 2012.

HermanI love lists that mention fave thangs. 

It’s fun, although highly subjective, but you can usually come away with learning something new to add to your pop culture brain-file.
So dear readers, here then is a compiled list of my favorite cars from television. At first I was going to include films and also animated television shows, and have them all mixed up, but decided not to, as those can be part of future lists.
I’m sure that you will have your own favorite vehicles that did not make my list. 

Some folks worship KITT, David Hasselhoff’s modified ’82 Pontiac Trans Am co-star in Knight Rider. 

Others may drool over Magnum P.I.’s Ferrari 308 GTS—and for good reason, as that is a mighty sweet car indeed!

Yes, there will be plenty of vehicles that people like but I just find boring.

Here at The Mystery Box H.Q. I have a particular fondness for vintage hot rods and antique sports cars. Plus, I can never get enough of the unusual one-of-a-kind rides and weird hybrids that were prevalent on sixties and seventies TV shows. If you feel I left one of your faves out, then by all means let me know about it.

In no particular order, except for the very last car, here they are!
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MY CREEPY VALENTINE: Love Songs From Another Dimension

This piece was originally published February 14th, 2011.

Wolfman Valentine Post IconValentine’s Day is one of those holidays that really divides folks.

There seem to be few who remain neutral when asked about this February tradition.

For whatever personal reasons, some people grumble and immediately fire off a few shots exclaiming how much they despise the whole thing.



Simmering with dislike, they view February 14th as nothing but a cheap ploy to force affection and spend some money needlessly—much to the delight of the nation’s retailers of course.

Meanwhile, sitting over in the effervescent land of candy, flowers and cards, are those who view it as a reminder of just how nice it is to be in love, to be loved and in general have a pleasant, however brief it may be, momentary bit of happily ever after.

So whatever money is spent, it’s still a bargain.

I thought it would be fun to list some of my favorite that deal with love. Yes they deal with love, although they deal with the subject in a rather tweaked, off-beat and sometimes sinister way. Hell, a few are downright dangerously obsessive and lead to nefarious endings.

So while love has been the primary subject of pop and rock and roll for decades, there are a few noble writers who have managed to take quite a different road than the normal love song.

You may have a few of your own to add to this list. Continue reading, please click here…

I Dream Of Shoedini…

This piece was originally published January 17th, 2011.

Gilbert Gottfried Post IconBy now the world of infomercials and As Seen On TV products have been written and talked about, goofed on and parodied endlessly.

Yet, there seems no end to the inventions that these shadowy wizards are able to come up with.

Like modern day snake oil salesmen, the ever growing LLC of the fast buck is a school of commerce that continues to pull the punters in.


Here then, are a few favorites that have been piling up in the viewing lounge at Mystery Box HQ, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do…
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This piece was originally published May, 2010

Heart Shaped Vinyl LP Post IconAs a very young music aficionado, I spent countless hours holding and analyzing vinyl LP cover art and I am far from alone in this pastime.

The format was always so perfect for viewing in fact, that to this day there has been a resurgence for collecting vinyl LP’s. Record collector’s and music fans worldwide are enjoying both older records and newly pressed reissues. there is a non-stop flow of newly pressed vinyl product constantly being released. Partly due to the overall sound quality inherent in the physical medium, partly the fact that many of today’s fans were not around to experience first-hand the time when vinyl was king of the castle but are still loving the bands of the era, but primarily for most fans, it just makes sense to hold and look at a treasured work of art in your hands that has a larger scale than a CD, a cassette, or hell, even an 8 track tape ever had.

My move through vinyl started with small 45 R.P.M. records with their accompanying storybooks for kid fare such as The Little Match Girl, The Tin Soldier (incredibly dismal when I think of them now) and a variety of Marvel and D.C. comic superhero tales. Then it was on to fantastic singles by The Beatles, The Dave Clark Five, Chuck Berry and The Electric Light Orchestra.

Meanwhile my LP format started with such wondrous family hand me downs as classics from Sinatra, Dean Martin, Jimi Hendrix, Iron Butterfly, and a variety of other great lounge, psychedelic and British Invasion gems. Adding to the pile were bad ass James Bond soundtracks and some good old Redd Foxx “Blue Humor” comedy oddities that provided plenty of kid-time guffaws and snickers for me and my pals. We listened endlessly (and with my friend’s parents approval in fact) to Redd’s You Gotta Wash Your Ass!—still in print after all these years!

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This piece was originally published March 29th, 2010.

Morlock Post IconTime travel is something that has fascinated, charmed and bewildered humans for centuries.

Who among us has not pondered the thought of traveling back and forth via “the continuum of experience in which events pass from the future through the present to the past”?

To celebrate the latest film offering which features a uniquely entertaining method of time travel, I decided to list my Top 10 fave Time Machines.

I have decided to only list those films and television shows where an actual device that you must either get into, sit on, or otherwise operate as a big machine, is used for the time travel. So no funky wristwatches, drug induced methods, or mind manipulation will be mentioned this time around…

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This piece was originally published February 15th, 2010.

Johnny Bravo IconHere at Mystery Box H.Q. we spent a couple of months watching the entire run— all five seasons, 117 episodes— of The Brady Bunch.

As I have mentioned before, there is no other more enjoyable way for me to watch a television series and appreciate all the continuity, or lack of continuity, the scripting, progression of an actor’s character development and seeing just how a show is brought to a final ending, or if it just hangs there forever in limbo without any closure.


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This piece was originally published December 28th, 2009.

Mod 2009 Year-End IconThankfully, here at The Mystery Box H.Q. I am kissing goodbye to what has been a roller coaster of a year.

One that has been filled with the lowest of lows, albeit also with some very beautiful  happiness.

In retrospect, this seems to be a transitionally positive and better year than last year, which downright sucked dirty motor oil and exhaust fumes.

Without reporting the downers or becoming mired in too much negativity, since I get enough of that through reading Twitter and Facebook updates from the cranky or through my own venting outbursts, I am going to run down a list of a few of the standout things that have really helped make this year more fun than not, more up than down…

Listed may also be some things that I will be doing future column pieces on, so for now I won’t fully elaborate on everything in long detail and unfortunately, I am probably going to forget quite a few that I would love to add, but I will try my best to spill out a selection of The Mystery Box 2009 for your reading pleasure…
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Ruminations From The Kids’ Table: 10 Non Traditional Things To Do On Thanksgiving

This piece was originally published November 23rd, 2009.

Thanksgiving Parade IconAh Thanksgiving! 

The other white meat

I mean…the other great American holiday extravaganza.

For most, a fine time for getting together and dining with family, friends and other loved ones.

Yet, for some, perhaps a time of loneliness, reflection or worse, being forced into stressful situations that we honestly dislike.

Sometimes we feel obliged to attend gatherings that we wish we could escape from, and other times we have an ok time but would love to put a small twist into things to give the entire affair a healthy spin of fresh delight.



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This piece was originally published September 14th, 2009

Happy Telepghone Icon jpgThe other day while driving around town, in an area that could also be called the wrong side of the tracks, my girlfriend and I were surprised to see an actual pay phone booth that not only still seemed to be in usable service, but it also had a door for privacy!

If you really look around they are still out there, as are public telephones sans the booth part, but they are fast becoming both obsolete and some, very rare objets d’ art.

These days I would wager that the majority of folks around the world in most developed or even semi-developed nations, own and use a cellular telephone.

Most people no longer own land lines, and therefore very few people find the need to use a public telephone. I am positive that there are some people alive today who do not even know what one is.

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