Sad Vampire: American Gothic

Way back towards the first of the year I received the honor of being awarded FIRST PLACE in the 2017 Evil Squirrel’s Nest Contest of Whatever. My entry was the story of a horror adventure told by Vlad, King of the Vampires (yes, cute Vlad from Vampire Diary, click here to see it.)

As a prize I was able to pick out something from The Evil Squirrel’s Cafe Press shop. Oh I can’t tell you how delighted I was to receive my American Gothic Bag a few weeks later. I LOVE THIS. I’ll be taking it on my cross country trip from Orangevale, CA to Lincoln, NE this summer. I’ll be taking it to a coffee shop this morning. I’ll be taking it everywhere.

I love this version of “American Gothic.” Oh my goodness have you EVER seen anything so cute? Love love love this. Thank you ES.

To get your own Evil Squirrel’s Nest Bling click HERE.

The first time I saw the Grant Wood painting “American Gothic” at the Art Institute in Chicago I was surprised at how small it is.  It is only 30¾ in × 25¾ inches. I remember walking around a corner and seeing it sort of an afterthought. I thought it would have a larger presence. But in real life it is absolutely stunning. Thank you Grant Wood, for that and ALL of your art. Grant Wood Rocked. Check out the faces in “Daughter’s of the Revolution.” You can’t get better than that.

And more from Grand Wood…

So in my rush to attempt to be clever and creative I took out a pen and pencil and did a quick sketch of “Vampire Gothic.” It took me all of five minutes. I believe Mr. Wood spent more time on the original version than I did on my sad Vampire version.

 

Seriously, I can draw when I want to. No, really, I can. Well, um…

Now I’ll do some shameless promotion. You can get your own Vampire Maman shirts and other items on Red Bubble. Good quality and unique fashion is just a few clicks away. Click Here.

 

Sad Vampire is a semi-regular feature on vampiremaman.com featuring somewhat quick and somewhat sad sketches, but sketches non the less. 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

When Time No Longer Matters

I love old-time pieces. My husband and son are also collectors of vintage time pieces. They don’t have to be valuable – just stylish and with a lot of character. It warms my heart to see young men, guys in college, or in their 20’s and 30’s wearing time pieces of old, be it pocket watches, or some of the exceptionally cool wrist watches that belonged to the time of their grandfathers, and great grandfathers. They go online, or to second-hand shops, or to vintage jewelers, yard and estate sales, or to Grandma, to find their kicks, and to find that perfect time…piece.

Many young women take old watches and turn them into refashioned jewels, or put them about like decorative pieces. There are stories to be told, and stories to make up when the history is a mysterious secret.

When time no longer matters…

Antique Pocket Watch With A Heart

http://www.ebay.com/itm/191957222728?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

Antique watch with tassel fob

 

Old Time

One of these watches is up for auction on ebay right now. It should go cheap, like the woman it’s original owners lusted after and lost, on the long journey across the sea, or lost with a rustle of skirts, as she ran laughing across the street.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

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Ask Juliette: Internet Trolls, and a few other items of great importance.

Ask Juliette (Ask a Vampire, Advice for Everyone) is a regular feature here at VampireMaman.com

All questions are from my readers. If you have a question about anything (and I mean anything) just send me a note at juliettevampiremom @ gmail.com

 

Ask Juliette

Dear Juliette,

Lately it seems that I can’t view a single cute or inspiring thing on the internet without seeing at least one asshat trying to ruin the moment with a negative comment. There’s a puppy cuddling a baby, someone says the baby will get germs. There’s a puppy drinking from a baby bottle, some idiot says milk is bad for dogs. (puppies are bottle-fed with special formula, dumbass) A paraplegic rider demonstrates how she mounts her horse, which is trained to lie down. The trolls spewed their poison all over that one as well.

The simple solution is to stop reading comments on things people post, and yet I find myself drawn there every time like a rubbernecker at a car crash. I worry that I’m developing some kind of sick obsession.

What is wrong with people?

And what is wrong with me, that I feel compelled to seek out the trolls? Does that make me a troll?

 

What is wrong with people? They’re assholes. But I’m going to show a few examples. No, I don’t have any answers. Trolls need to grow up and get a life.

If you look at trolls are you a troll? Absolutely not. You’re right, it is like car crash or a train wreck. But it pisses us off because it is like seeing a car crash caused by a drunk driver.

We’ve all left nasty comments (don’t tell me you haven’t) on sites. I don’t do it anymore because when I have I usually feel guilty and troll-like. You just have to let it go. LET IT GO.

LET IT GO like James Bay or Elsa in Frozen but neither one of their songs work for this – so let’s move on.

Now that the US Presidential election is looming and in our faces 24/7 the trolls are out in full force. Be careful. Don’t allow yourself to be sucked into the mess. Nothing good will come of it.

For the sake of this post we’re going to discuss serial trollers. You know who they are. They’re the people who ALWAYS have to leave a nasty comment or something that contradicts what you’re trying to say. They’re the kind who like to leave their nasty snail slime trail on news stories, blogs, and public online social media groups.

From Wikipedia: “In Internet slang, a troll (/ˈtroʊl/, /ˈtrɒl/) is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory,[1] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response[2] or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion,[3] often for their own amusement.”

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to forward a feel good news story (usually on NPR) to someone but then saw all of the asshole troll comments on it. I swear some of the regular trollers have no lives. They can’t have lives – not with all of their narrow minded negative energy that they MUST get out.

I have three examples of crap I’ve recently seen.

Linda Holmes writes the popular culture feature Monkey See. Even though I’m a hundred years younger than she is, and don’t always have the same taste as she does,  (but what is there to agree with it is just a popular culture feature to be entertained by) but I love her writing. She is bright and fresh and funny. Anyway, on a recent column about a The Bachelorette TV show she had to start it with an anti-troll disclaimer.

[Note: This is where a spoiler warning would usually go, but in this case, the warning is this: it’s a post about The Bachelorette. You should only read it if you’re interested in a post about The Bachelorette. If you’re not interested in a post about The Bachelorette, I can recommend this story about a snowy owl or this examination of ancient Chinese beer. If you’re not interested in The Bachelorette or owls or beer, I’m out of ideas.]

But even with that there were trolls making comments. The other readers pointed out the disclaimer but trolls gotta troll. They can’t help it. It is their sick and twisted fix. But what is with the guy who doesn’t understand that the program is just fluffy entertainment and went on a rant about politics and the fall of Western civilization?

This is the full article: http://www.npr.org/sections/monkeysee/2016/05/24/479291336/parade-of-goofballs-2016-can-jojo-find-a-prince-in-a-haystack

I don’t watch The Bachelorette but I thought the article was laugh-out-loud funny.

Another example was a story with the title, World’s First Surviving Septuplets, Born In ’97, Graduate From High School.

I thought the article about the McCaughey siblings was sweet. I remember when those babies were born. Seven! Count em. And their parents raised them ALL at the same time. Can you imagine the diapers? Can you imagine having seven toddlers? It was a feel good article. But the trolls have to move in and make about every kind of mean and nasty comment they could. Why? I have no idea. Those kids aren’t hurting anyone. And to make matters worse they might read the comments. But trolls don’t care about that.

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/05/23/479248548/worlds-first-surviving-septuplets-born-in-97-graduate-from-high-school

I’ve noticed on news sites that it is the same trolls coming up over and over. Get where this is going? On one of my own social media sites I used to have a cat hater hating on my cats. WTF? I’m not going to hate on your pets.

Recently (today) a young friend of mine posted this disclaimer before posting a funny video on Facebook.

Please, no “this is why you don’t cater to children” comments. We’ve all gone down this path at least once (some only once) and found ourselves eating the damn toast over the trashcan.

No, we don’t give into toddlers like that, well usually, but the video was funny. If you’ve lived with a wild chimp, I mean toddler, you know what the maker of the video was getting at. But it is a shame that the young mother who posted the video had to tell her online friends to back off.

The Artistic (Figure) Rollerskating community is filled with trolls. My own child (a US National Champion) spends a lot of time defending young skaters against older trolls. There are first the old timers who do everything they can to put down young skaters. Yes, old people are trolling young people in their sport. They throw out their old nasty phlegm about how the skaters aren’t any good and how their dresses are ugly. Really? If they want the sport they loved to die they’re doing a good job and helping it along to it’s grave with their negativity and lack of support. By the way – the skaters are better now and their dresses are better than ever. These old folks never even think that when they spread their negative crap that the young people who are working so hard see it. So shut the fuck up skating trolls – or anyone who trolls any young people in an activity they love.

What is even worse is that the old trolls give younger trolls permission to be mean. And don’t even get me started on trolls from one sport who troll another sport (don’t even get me started on them.) If you want respect don’t be a troll. Make sure you tell your kids that – even if your kids are grown.

Earlier this week I asked my readers to give me their thoughts on trolls.

From Kevin A. Ranson:

I think Trolls enjoy participation, but they also like reality TV drama. It’s their chance to be snarky safely behind their keyboards without worry about other people’s feelings — which may say more about the Trolls than their targets.

That said, however, posting anything online invites conversation. If the comments are left on, it may be naive to expect that only supportive statements will be made. Some folks don’t have the education or the experience concerning a particular subject matter and may be asking ACTUAL questions in a way that may sound Trollish while not trying to be. Being accused of being a Troll in a new group can transform someone into a Troll; after all, shouldn’t they act accordingly if no one will take them seriously?

Online conversation tends to exist in a microcosm of support where people may expect to be safe — Facebook groups, for example — but a difference of opinions can manifest between even the best of friends. My own policy is to allow Trolls to be themselves on my threads while I ask them constructive questions to see if they are indeed a Troll or, perhaps, have been transformed into one. One aspect of this behavior tends to be intelligent, articulate, net-savvy folks looking for someplace to belong; make friends with a Troll and they will be your online friend forever!

Many folks I’ve met online started out as Trolls but have since joined a contingent of Trollhunters: Trolls who hunt Trolls — a-holes who hunt a-holes. These are friendly but arrogant folks who target Trolls, luring them away down dark tunnels until they find themselves surrounded and left with little choice but to run screaming back under the rocks from whence they came…and it can be quite entertaining to watch.

For Kevin’s blog Thinking Skull CLICK here. 

From Holly:

I will get personal attacks on my weight or looks when I post pictures of myself (well, when I did, I mean) but they would filter out and never get published. Either I delete and don’t care or, depending on where I am in the depression and such and take it all completely personally.

I know that it has become popular for some people to troll-track or expose people for who they really are, but I view that as just as lousy behavior as the troll. Even in the name of defense, creeping is creeping.

I agree with Holly. The beauty of most social media and blogs is that you can delete trolls, block them out, and get rid of them. Holly’s smart and entertaining blog is https://bloggityramblings.wordpress.com

For my original troll post and the other comments from my readers (THANK YOU EVERYONE) click here. 

When I first started Vampiremaman.com I had a few trolls. OK maybe not complete trolls – they were just people who wanted to tell me that I knew nothing about blogging or Vampires (really?) or spelling. OK I admit I know nothing about spelling. I had a few tell me that I was going to Hell for writing about paranormal creatures of darkness. But I just blocked them out and they went away.

But back to the original question… I don’t think we’ll ever get rid of trolls. Maybe if we just all ignore them they’ll go away.

~ Juliette

 

I added this image of Vincent Price just because he is smoking HOT.

I added this image of Vincent Price just because he is smoking HOT.

Dear readers, I’m soooooo behind, so I only have a few short questions left.

 

Dear Juliette,

My boyfriend has no sense of style. If we’re going out he’ll wear an oversized tee shirt and baggy sports shorts, no matter what the occasion. How can I get him to dress nice without hurting his feelings? 

 

Ask your boyfriend the age-old question, “Are you going to wear that?”

Another version of that same question is, “You’re not wearing that are you?” I find that one the most effective at my house.

Be firm. If he doesn’t get a clue take him shopping and show him the following video cause every girl’s crazy bout a sharp dressed man.

~ Juliette

Dear Juliette,

I met the perfect guy, except I just found out he is a Vampire. What should I do?

 

Run away.

~ Juliette

 

oscar_artistic copy

 

Ask Juliette is a regular feature on Vampire Maman. It is usually posted on Thursday. If you have any questions about anything please ask and I’ll answer the best I can. Send your questions about relationships, parenting, vampires, paranormal stuff, life, love, cats, oranges, ghosts, werewolves, fashion, cooking, art, and everything else to juliettevampiremom at gmail dot com.

Thanks for dropping by. xoxox

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Ask Juliette

 

 

Dear Juliette: Fashion, Favorites and Slightly Lame Answers

Dear Juliette is a regular Thursday feature at Vampire Maman.

Ask a Vampire – Advice for Everyone

vm_keyboard

Dear Juliette,

What do you think of teachers, coaches, or parents having favorites?

~ Left Out

 

Dear Left Out,

Obviously you aren’t “the favorite.”

This is a hard one. It hurts when someone else is obviously the favorite. Especially if they’re getting super special treatment.

When a teacher, coach, or parent picks a favorite it is doing a disservice to the favorite child/student and to everybody else.

Kids who are favorites can also use that to take advantage of the teacher, coach, and especially the parent.

A teacher or coach might adore their favorite, but the extra attention and bragging can often look bad.

But at the same time sometimes adults don’t realize that “favorites” are often resented and disliked by other kids, and by other adults because of the unfair advantages they have. If you’re a coach or teacher you have to at least make an attempt to treat all of your students equally, even if you don’t like them equally.

It is ok to have a favorite. We all have favorites, but don’t make it obvious and don’t forget the other kids.

And acknowledge all kids, even if you don’t like them.

My daughter told me about something that happened in one of her classrooms.

One of the boys called out a teacher. This was a high school Junior Advanced Placement, AP College level course (11th grade, 16-17 year olds).

The kid said to the teacher, “You don’t like me do you?”

The teacher said, “No, I don’t like you but you’re still getting all A’s on everything so what’s your problem.”

The kid then said, “No problem.”

If you aren’t the favorite try not to let it get to you. Be your own favorite. Do your best. And remember that some people are just assholes.

Unfortunately this happens in the workplace too. Bad bosses are especially prone to it. But just try to brush it off and do your best. Favorites rarely stay favorites forever.

~ Juliette

images-2

Dear Juliette,

What items should a grown woman never wear?

~ Fashion Franny

 

Dear Franny,

DO NOT WEAR THE FOLLOWING (the short list)

  • Orange lipstick
  • Over bleached hair
  • Red pants
  • Anything too tight or tacky tight
  • Short plaid school girl skirts
  • Bowl cuts
  • Ugly shoes
  • Totally monochromatic outfits unless it is dramatic and black and classy.
  • Dark stockings with open toed shoes.

~ Juliette

Vampire Sisters

Dear Juliette,

What do Vampires wear when they aren’t in formal wear?

~ Curious

 

Dear Curious,

I’m not into the Elvira Mistress of the Dark look, and I don’t know any Vampire guys who do the whole black suit and red lined opera cape thing.

Right now I’m wearing jeans, flip flops, and a black sweat shirt.

But Vampires tend to dress pretty creatively. Even in jeans we’re ultra hip, put together, and add those nice little touches that make us always classy and always fun.

We also wear clothing that fits right and is comfortable. You can’t get a good hold on a neck if your collar is itchy, or your pants are slightly too tight.

But Vampires do tend to wear black because it doesn’t show blood stains (heaven forbid) as bad as other colors. Hey, one has to be practical about these things.

~ Juliette

Vampire guys tend to dress like Keith.

Vampire guys tend to dress like Keith.

Do you have a question about anything? Zombies? Vampires? Relationships? Parenting? Life? Then send your questions to juliettevampiremom @ gmail .com (don’t put the spaces in, I just did to prevent trolling spammers)

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

 

 

 

A Novel Idea Scarf – The Time Travelers

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Get the story below on a scarf, shirt or pencil skirt – The ultimate dress for success this season.

The Time Traveler

A story from Juliette Kings (Vampire Maman)

Carefully opening the package, Theo discovered a formerly unknown packet of love letters between Thomas Jefferson and the wife of one of his best friends. Unknown to the modern world. Everyone back then had known, well almost everyone who knew the couple. They were just too polite to say anything.

The paper was still in good condition and the ink strong. “Very good,” he said to himself. Dealing in old documents and antiques could be tricky if you didn’t know what was real and what was not. He always knew what was real.

As he gently lifted the old letters back into the box there was a sudden flash of light and a beautiful woman in jeans and a sweater suddenly appeared before him.

“Theo? Darling, what are you doing here?” The woman seemed surprised to see him. Well damn, he was equally surprised. It was almost 3:00 a.m. and his shop was closed for the Thanksgiving holiday week.

He looked her up and down. Tall, pretty, sort of out of place. No, really out of place. “This is my place of business. Do I know you?”

“You’re… are you a time traveler too? You didn’t tell me? Did you get here on the Tardis?” She gave a little laugh like they were old buddies with an inside joke.

Theo was not amused. “What are you talking about? What is the Tardis?”

She rolled her eyes and smiled. “Dr. Who. His time machine. You know the 250th Anniversary.”

“Oh right. The 50th anniversary or something like that. I don’t watch it. Never did. You need to leave.”

She stepped towards him and smiled that dazzling smile of hers again. “How did you get here?”

Theo was not amused. “I’m sorry, I thought I made it clear that I’m no fan of Dr. Who. You need to go right now. I’ve had enough of your deranged game.”

She took another step forward. “Then how did you go from being in 2313 back to 2013? That’s three hundred years.”

“So I know you in the future?”

“We’re lovers. Don’t you remember?”

He didn’t remember. But it suddenly dawned on him where she had come from and why she was there. “I haven’t been there yet,” he quietly told her.

She wasn’t the first time traveler he’d run across in his 465 years, but this is the first time he’d encountered her.

“What is your name?” He asked her as he stepped closer.

“Laura. How could you not know?”

“This is as far as I’ve come my dear. I can’t travel to the future.”

She looked confused. “You’re in the past Theo.”

“My present. You don’t know do you? In the future we’re still hiding who we really are. Laura are we in a relationship of the heart or is it just a physical thing?”

Her eyes watered up. “Theo, don’t do this.”

“Laura, do you know what I am?”

“You’re the man I’m falling in love with.”

“I’m the man who will take what he needs and either leave you or kill you. My advice would be to change time and let me be.”

A tear rolled down her beautiful face. “No. How did you get here.”

“The question should be how did I get THERE. Laura.” He whispered her name and stepped closer. “I’m sorry it has to be this way.”

He kissed her than moved to her neck. He could taste unknown drugs of the future in her system, no doubt something to help with the effects of time travel or stress. He could read her memories of their affair. It was a strange time. Time Travelers always had memories that were confusing and somewhat ignorant. What they knew of the past was almost always based on fantasy and what they wanted it to be, not what it really had been.

Looking down on the sleeping woman, Theo thought that she must be intelligent to be part of a Time Travel program, but emotionally she was like a teenage girl all full of fluttery ideas and dreams of romance. He’d never fall in love with her. She wasn’t of his kind and she never would be.

Yawning, he looked at the clock to realize dawn was almost here. Time to sleep. “I’m the ultimate time traveler. A Vampire dear. I only go forward. Until we meet again.” Then he kissed her gently and left her alone to return to her own time and his future.

Click here to check out all of the Vampire Maman Merch.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman