Breakfast with Cthulhu, other podcast news, and another hard farewell

Much of the old Yog Radio gang (from several iterations) have joined together for a new (hopefully!) podcast series: The Cthulhu Breakfast Club.  Paul of Cthulhu is joined by Val and Finn (of the YSDC actual play group), Chris Lackey (of News from Pnakotus and the HP Lovecraft Literary Podcast), and Marty Jopson.  They talk about topics including YSDC’s new Trail of Cthulhu scenario “The Long Con”, Alone Against the Flames, Terry Pratchett, and more.  There’s also a Patreon account set up to fund their scones (and bandwidth) – Patreon backers and YSDC patrons get access to additional material.  Clotted cream is not free, my friends.

There have also been new episodes the usual Lovecraftian podcasts:

  • The Good Friends of Jackson Elias talked about Robert Aickman and especially his short story “The Hospice”.
  • Ken and Robin continue to talk about stuff, this time covering what scared them as kids (for Ken it was the folktale “The King of Cats” ), Toronto’s (less than) mysterious tunnel, and the Irminsul, the Saxon’s magic coin-filled-log.
  • The Miskatonic University Podcast (with Keepers Dan and Jon) talked about Sand Dwellers and 7th Ed. combat rules.

Finally, there’s a gravestone in Sterling, Massachusett’s Chocksett Cemetery for one Nathan Burpe, the epitaph of which says:

In Memory of Mr. Nathan Burpe, Died Sept 30, 1756 in Ye 25th Year of his Age.
“This man, wife and child in 14 days did die
His House left desolate – Being Ye whole family.”

Next to his gravestone are one for his wife Azubah and his infant son Elijah.  That phrase – “his house left desolate” – has always stuck with me and I’ve though of it more this week.  As previously noted, we lost our cat Aurora over the weekend.  Yesterday she was joined by one of our other cats, Charcoal.  He was a rescued stray, recovered as a kitten from a cat colony.  Unlike his other siblings, he never acclimated to human company and spent much of his life hiding under or behind things (and I’m having trouble finding a good picture of him rather than his tail), but I’d like to imagine we offered him a somewhat more pleasant and safer home than he would have had otherwise.  He had been ailing for a while, but his death so soon after Aurora’s unexpected passing (and compounded by other losses of late) has left our house feeling more than a bit desolate.  Goodbye Charcoal.

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Aurora 2/1/08-3/21/15

There was in this singular caravan a little boy with no father or mother, but only a tiny black kitten to cherish. The plague had not been kind to him, yet had left him this small furry thing to mitigate his sorrow; and when one is very young, one can find great relief in the lively antics of a black kitten. So the boy whom the dark people called Menes smiled more often than he wept as he sate playing with his graceful kitten on the steps of an oddly painted wagon.

– HP Lovecraft, The Cats of Ulthar

 

Updatery, March Edition

First off, welcome Spring!  Please clean up after your Ostara sacrifices people – that altar to Yog-Sothoth, hewn from the very basalt of the lost Eiglophian Mountains is a privilege, not a right.  (Well, it’s a rite, but, you get my point.)

Vast and sundry apologies for the sporadic updates to the blog.  I’m still hip-deep in finishing up the next issue of the Arkham Gazette and I’ve done my best to focus on wrapping that up rather than taking care of other things.  If I owe you an email, this is why.  Fortunately being but hip deep means that A) I am no longer neck-deep, and B) I can slowly move about doing other things while I finish it up.

There have been several Lovecraftian RPG releases so far this year.  I’ve been trying to keep up to date with them in my page about new RPG material but I don’t think I’ve mentioned any of them here.  Let’s bullet point these, shall we?

I must confess that, given the research needs of the Gazette (today’s book is Poisons: Their Effects and Detection by Alexander Wynter Blythe (1895) I’ve barely had time to even look at most of the books, save Investigator Weapons v. 2, which is great, and Alone Against the Flames… which was… eh… adequate but underwhelming.  Perhaps I’ll discuss it more at some point?  It was free.

On the podcasting front there have been too many new episodes to summarize, from Ken and Robin, the MU Podcast, RPPR, the Unspeakable Oath (though I covered that one!), the Good Friends of Jackson Elias – hell, even the old Yog Radio gang might be up to something.

I am sure there is more to cover, but that’s all for now.  Was I supposed to mention a Kickstarter?

A Ghost Light in 19th Century Bristol, CT

Sometimes when doing research on one topic, you come across an unexpected find, such as this account of a ghostly light in 19th century Connecticut:

In 1822, a woman named Stiles, who lived in the Gideon Roberts house, called one evening, at the home of my father, who was then nine years of age. Later in the evening her family heard groans outside the door,and found her in an unconscious state from which she never rallied, but died soon after being taken into the house. Medical aid was summonsed, but nothing could be done to relieve her. A postmortem examination revealed the fact that she had been assaulted and outraged by a number of fiends in human shape, the scene of the assault being traced to an orchard some distance north of my father’s residence, in what has long been called the Bunker Hill lot, on the Barnum farm. That she had been carried from the orchard to her home was shown by her shoes having been removed and left under the trees, while her stockings were not soiled. The criminals were never detected. Some time afterwards, at night, when any one came up Peck Lane past the scene of the crime, a light would appear, which would keep along abreast of the traveller, but inside of the fence, and when nearly out to the comer of the mountain road, it would turn eastward toward the deceased woman’s home, and disappear. I have talked with one or two persons who solemnly declared they had seen this light, beside my father, who remembered it distinctly. The lane ceased to be used as a thoroughfare for some time afterward, by the timid, after nightfall.

From Bristol, Connecticut, in the olden time “New Cambridge” which includes Forestville. (1907)

I find this an especially interesting account is that it links a haunting to a specific murder victim, rather than the sort of nebulous causes usually proffered in ghostly tales, and that it is recorded in an early 20th century town history rather than a cheaply printed unproofread book by Schiffer.

In a brief survey of the usualparanormalwebsites, I don’t see any modern references to a haunting on Peck Lane in modern Bristol… lots of highly dubious fact-free online claims of other hauntings, but nothing on Peck Lane.

Speaking with the Unspeakable (Oath Podcast)

I had the distinct pleasure recently to talk with Shane Ivey, Adam Scott Glancy, and Ross Payton

An ashcan copy of the Companion

of the Unspeakable Oath podcast.  We talked about their respective projects (The Unspeakable Oath #25, Horrors of War, Role-playing Public Radio and other projects), my projects (The Arkham Gazette) and, for most of the show Masks of Nyarlathotep and The Masks of Nyarlathotep CompanionDo give it a listen.

It was a lot of fun to chat with the UO crew and hear about their experiences running Masks.  I hope I remembered to speak slowly and enunciate.  If you haven’t taken a look yet, there are (currently) about 5 days to go in the MoNC Kickstarter.