Redheads Writing In Cafes: B-movie Makers Who Inspire Me

I have always been madly in love with b-movies. Especially, 1950s b-movies. I’m extra in love with bad b-movies. The badder the better and especially in times like this. We need something fun to distract ourselves.

Prior to pandemic jail my husband and I ran a monthly b-movie night called Killer B Cinema. We were trying to figure out how to keep it going on YouTube, but they make it incredibly hard for you to do that. So, we are on hiatus until we figure something else out. We are praying that our venue (See-Scape in the Junction) continues to be ok, so when we get out of jail we can continue on. In the meantime, we are working on another way to show our movies.

The movies themselves are a lot of fun, however, for me anyway, there is something about the determination and passion of the people behind the movies that truly inspires me. Makers, writers, directors and producers such Ed Wood Jr., Roger Corman, William Castle, and Herman Cohen are tops for me with extra fondness for Ed Wood.

Why Ed Wood Jr.? Why not Ed Wood Jr.! To me, he was a genius. Not only was he a genius, he has a determination and passion that is beyond inspiring. Ed Wood Jr., would do anything and everything it took to get his movies completed and to the big screen. Many considered his films laughable, and critics panned him, but he never, ever stopped. Every once in a while, when I’m feeling discouraged and on the cusp of quitting, I remind myself, that Ed Wood Jr., never gave up. If he has no money, he would find ways to build his sets. Couldn’t afford actors, he’d cast friends, heck most of the actors who worked for him, were in several of his movies and continued to work with him knowing they may never get paid. They wanted his movies to succeed just as much as he did. Those same actors often helped to build sets, do make-up, wore their own clothing and even helped finance when they could.

Roger Corman is another film maker who got his movies done the same way. The 1960 version of Little Shop of Horrors, has many of the actors doing lighting, sets, make-up and wardrobe. Actress Jackie Joseph, who played Audrey (the human) wore her own clothing for the movie.

On a rainy or snowy day, it’s comforting to have a marathon of these kinds of movies, it has also inspired my husband and I to start making our own b-movie. If we follow the lead of those who inspire us, if we have a camera, the world is ours! If you remember your own passion, the world can be yours too!

Below are a few of their movies for you to watch (YouTube). Enjoy!

Stay The Fuck Home It’s Time To Move On Edition!

Well folks, I think it is time to put the Stay The Fuck Home series to bed. I’ve had a lot of fun writing it and hope I helped a few people out. Now that we are past our toilet paper and flour shortage/hoarding situation, and things are opening up again, I feel like it is time to move onto blogging about something else. So….. I AM! However, I am still waiting for a few guest posts and once those arrive, I will post them.

I am going to continue Redheads Writing In Cafes blog posts, except I will be writing from my bedroom/temporary office and occasionally the back yard. Hopefully, one day soon it will be back to coffee shops, patios and other outdoor spaces. Also hopefully I will resume writing with that other redhead Heather Babcock!

BAT ADVENTURES will continue on till late Fall! As long as the bats are out, I will be writing about them!

I don’t want to leave the Wednesday spot empty, so I will be replacing it with a new series called Queen of Schlock! I’m truly the Queen of B-movies and will be posting about them.

It’s been a blast. I hope we don’t get a second wave. Please stay safe and there will be lots more writing coming from this redhead!

Bat Adventures and the Songs About Them!

If bats had a theme song what would it be? Bat out of Hell? Bat Country? Bats in the Belfry? There are so, so many choices. I guess the theme song might depend on the bat. Would a fruit bat like a lighter, happier song or a vampire bat might like something dark and spooky and a large gray bat, maybe something a little more goth? Given a choice, what would their theme songs be?

One of the most well known bat songs is Bat Out Of Hell by Meatloaf. There are hundreds more. Bats also turn up in children’s songs and poetry. Maybe poetry will be another post.

What is your favourite bat song?

Here are some links to lists of bat songs, incase you want to give a listen.

https://www.ranker.com/list/the-best-songs-with-bat-in-the-title/ranker-music

http://www.canteach.ca/elementary/songspoems96.html

Lyrics that contain the word bat! https://www.lyrics.com/lyrics/BAT

Each time I post, I am going to also suggest music that goes with bat adventures! Today I’m suggesting Toronto’s National Velvet’s Flesh Under Skin.

Type of bats: Large Grey Bats
No. Mosquito bites: 0

Here is a link I’ve created to all of our bat sightings.

Important: Do not handle bats. They can carry the rabies virus. Only those who have been properly vaccinated and have knowledge of bats should be handling them. If you find a bat in your home call a bat rescue. Do not call an exterminator, call a rescue. Bats are important for our environment. I have links below for rescues.

Types of bats in Ontario: https://onnaturemagazine.com/bat-guide.html
High Park Nature Centre: https://www.highparknature.org/wiki/wiki.php?n=Mammals.Bats
Bat rescues: http://www.ontariowildliferescue.ca/wildlifecentres/?care=bat

Redheads Writing In Cafes and Mindfulness

(except when it’s my bedroom)

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about mindfulness, how we treat people and I have been taking every opportunity to listen to other’s stories. We are living in a time when people have had enough, have been pushed too many times, and are rising up! We need to continue to educate ourselves on the issues, how we can help, and how we can just be better people!

Earlier this week, I posted about this on my Instagram and want to expand on it, not only because it affects me personally, but because I see it happen way too often to friends and so many others, is body shaming. IT HAS TO STOP! Shaming is bullying. Point blank.

Over the last few months, I’ve been fat-shamed a few times. Both in public and online. A friend this week, who is a fucking Goddess, was fat-shamed. It also happens to her quite often. Another friend who lives a 1930s lifestyle is constantly fat-shamed because she isn’t as slender as the women from the era… women who were thin because they were literally starving due to The Great Depression. These are only a couple stories! We read and hear this all the time and we shouldn’t be!!! This goes beyond fat-shaming as well. I’ve heard from friends with physical disabilities and a few friends who are transitioning, that they have been shamed many, many, many times!

It. Needs. To. Stop! Bullying has long-lasting effects on those who are being bullied. You may not see the damage on the outside, but it is there!

Personally, I try to ignore the shaming, but let me tell you sometimes it’s really hard to restrain myself from lashing out, but I would be doing the same thing they are. I do try my darndest to educate and hope they understand what they’ve done is unacceptable.

While I’m at it, let’s also throw judging people into the discussion. Please don’t do that either! You don’t know their story and even when you think you do, you really, really don’t! Just because someone is smiling doesn’t mean they aren’t in pain! We really need to be mindful of how we speak to others. We all have inner editors and sadly, many of us forget to use them.

Our world needs more mindfulness and compassion. Not more hate

ZX/81 Music Video!!!

If you love the 80s you are going to dig @zx81toronto new music video.

Go watch it and come back to tell me how many 1980s easter eggs you found.

You can buy their entire album over at Bandcamp! https://zx81toronto.bandcamp.com/album/back-to-basics

StaycationTO

Happy Canada Day!

Recently, I sent a suggestion to John Tory via Twitter, but considering all of the noise over there, I’m sure it won’t get seen. My suggestion was two fold, a way to help us while we are in pandemic jail (and safely) and a way to help out our small businesses. I got the idea the other day when I saw a post from @lizzieto1. She did a social distance tiki boat tour of the island and it was in conjunction with @shamefultikito. My idea was to start something called #StaycationTO. Programs such as #ActiveTO, #CurbTO and #CafeTO is working really well, so why not take elements of all of them and create a how-to guide on ways for us Torontonians to enjoy the city and do it safely, while helping small businesses out! Below are a few examples and suggestions.

1. If businesses are participating they would include a pamphlet/guide on how to do a social distance and safe staycation, promoting city programs as well as other businesses/types of businesses. It could also tell you how to put your own safe staycation together!

2. Put together packages. 

  1. I’m going to use @shamefultikiTO as an example again (along with a few other places). They currently do drink packages and have food for takeout. They recently did a tiki taxi (but I’m not sure if it was a one time thing). They could have a package deal that includes 2 drinks, a meal and a ticket to the tiki taxi. And yes, the tiki taxi has to follow the proper #socialdistance rules. We don’t want this turning into a party boat disaster or a three hour tour!
  2. A nerd picnic! Places like @seescapeto could have a nerd picnic package. It might include a meal for two or four, plus a small portable game (card game?), along with suggestions of close by parks you could have a social distance picnic at.
  3. Date night picnic. A restaurant could have a date night picnic package. It would include a meal for two, a playlist (for a phone app) of a local musician or music mix of local musicians and a map that includes park suggestions.
  4. Help out our local musicians and DJ’s. A bar/restaurant like @theholeinthewallto or @theskylinerestaurant, working with either a solo artist or a DJ, could have a weekly drink and dinner special and included in that package is a password to a zoom or some other platform, where you get a show that evening. Part of the money from the drink/dinner package goes to the musician or DJ.
  5. Cycling or walking coffee tour! Map out points of interest in the city and using bike lanes and/or bike paths and or walking,  that include coffee shops along the way. This would also work with places that sell sweet treats, like @bunner or @machinodonuts or many others.

I’m full of ideas and yes, I do realize this is a lot of work and the city is already busy, so maybe we could start this on our own! It would work for more than just Toronto, other cities or towns could do their own. You could also do versions for children as well.

Maybe we could use social media to get it started? If you do your own version, please copy me in and use hashtag #staycationTO. Please, make sure you do this safely, social distance and respect the rules of the businesses you go into and those around you!. We want to get rid of Covid19 in our city! Enjoy your summer safely!

pandemicjail, covid19, toronto, socialdistancing, physicaldistancing, letshavefunbutbesafe, canadaday, datenight, nerdpicnic, walkingtour, biketour, localmusic, localmusicians, localDJs, staycation, staycationto,

Stay The Fuck Home Learn How To Cross Stitch Edition

When I was a kid, I used to do a lot of cross stitch and paint by number. I think a few of the paint by numbers might still be on my parent’s walls. I remember loving cross stitch and recently got back into it. One of the reasons is I want to be able to either cross stitch or embroider onto garments I am making.

One of the main reasons I love cross stitch is it takes concentration and that concentration takes your mind off of the world around you. We all need that right now! If you are interested in taking this us, below are some how to and links to free patterns.

Free Patterns

https://www.dmc.com/us/free-patterns-5041/free-patterns-5042/free-cross-stitch-patterns-5044.html

https://www.freepatterns.com/cross-stitch

https://www.thesprucecrafts.com/cross-stitch-patterns-for-everyone-983827

Bat Adventures and Bat Detectors

Since I have started writing about bats, I have mentioned often about my bat detector. I’ve had a few inquiries about what the heck it is. As as wedding gift in 2018 good friends of ours and fellow ghouls gave us a bat detector. We all became really interested in them after using one for the bat walk put on by High Park Nature Centre. Since receiving one as a gift my husband and I have been on many of our own bat walks.

I guess I should explain a bit more about bat detectors, what they are and what they can do.

bat detector is a device used to detect the presence of bats by converting their echolocation ultrasound signals, as they are emitted by the bats, to audible frequencies, usually about 120 Hz to 15 kHz. There are other types of detectors which record bat calls so that they can be analysed afterward, but these are more commonly referred to by their particular function.

Bats emit calls from about 12 kHz to 160 kHz, but the upper frequencies in this range are rapidly absorbed in air. Many bat detectors are limited to around 15 kHz to 125 kHz at best. Bat detectors are available commercially and also can be self-built. (source Wikipedia) To learn more check out the full article over on Wikipedia.

This article has a clip on what it sounds like when you hear a bat on your detector. After time, you can actually recognize bat types as well as tell when there is one or more flying by. https://naturecanada.ca/tag/bat-detectors/

The model I have is the Bat Seeker 4. It looks like below. Sure I’d love a higher end detector, but this one works great!

If you are looking for something a bit more higher end, that has more bells and whistles and can possibly record the bat sounds, please check out The Bat Detectors Buying Guide. They are quite a bit more expensive than the Bat Seeker (which runs at about $45) and if you are just starting out, the more advanced versions may be confusing for you. I strongly suggest you start out with something more basic.

Do you plan on buying a bat detector and go on your own bat adventures?

Each time I post, I am going to also suggest music that goes with bat adventures! Today I’m suggesting The Gnarly Ones and the song Night Rider. They are a Toronto Surf band that I just discovered! I hope they are still performing once we are out of Covid Jail! https://thegnarlyonessurf.bandcamp.com/track/night-rider

Type of bats: Big Brown Bats
No. Mosquito bites: 0

Here is a link I’ve created to all of our bat sightings.

Important: Do not handle bats. They can carry the rabies virus. Only those who have been properly vaccinated and have knowledge of bats should be handling them. If you find a bat in your home call a bat rescue. Do not call an exterminator, call a rescue. Bats are important for our environment. I have links below for rescues.

Types of bats in Ontario: https://onnaturemagazine.com/bat-guide.html
High Park Nature Centre: https://www.highparknature.org/wiki/wiki.php?n=Mammals.Bats
Bat rescues: http://www.ontariowildliferescue.ca/wildlifecentres/?care=bat

Redheads Writing In Cafes & A Poem

(for those who no longer can, for those who had to be sacrificed to be heard, for those who are just born, we must stand up against what is wrong)

The Dreadfuls

Feelings, feeling, felt
Avoidance, avoiding, void
That void, the one that echos
Remembrance vibrating past memories
Locked into a glass box of fear and dread

Hater, hating, hate
Screams, screaming, deaf
You tell them your pain
Your scars pulsating for centuries
Why can’t they hear your wails beyond the glass jar

Fighters, fighting, fight
Chanting, chants, warriors
They stomp in rhythm
Building walls to protect their inheritance
Names tapped into stone with too many to read

Breath, breathe, breathing
Justice, fairness, healing
If we can listen, can we not learn
Repeating what our fathers said
Will only burn all of the buildings to the ground

Mother, Mother’s, Mama
Fear, anger, love
We can fix what was once unfixable
Stand up for those who cannot
Push back against those who won’t

Together, togetherness, gather
Whole, circle, live
Push back, push forward, reach out
Give a hand to help and pull them up
Shout with them and let them be heard

Stay The Fuck Home Bad 1950s Recipes Edition

At this point, some of us are reaching into the back of our cupboards to see what is there. Partly because we need to use stuff up, partly because we are bored of cooking, mostly because going to the grocery store is really fucking stressful.

In the back of my cupboard, turns out, I have a lot of Jackfruit. It’s time to get creative with it. I decided to turn to the 1950s weird recipes for some inspiration. Maybe you should too… or not. There is some weird fucking stuff about to be rolled out below.

What a cruel trick this one is! Click here for more horrifying recipes.

Everyone has a can of Spam or it’s equivalent in their cupboards. Some may have a can that’s been their for 20 plus years. This stuff will survive a nuclear war! Click here for more…. of these recipes?

Yum… Fish Surprise. For more fishy…. and they really are recipes, click here. Or don’t. I won’t blame you.

Why the fuck would you do this to bananas! What the fuck did bananas do to you???

How much stuff can you cram into jello. Click here to find out!