Category Archives: The Occult

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A Museum of Nightmares in the Shadow of the Eiffel Tower

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I don't think about hair. I mean, sure I'm losing mine. And sure, the musical is one of the greatest things of all time. But really... is hirsituity that big a deal? Big enough for the Musée de Quai Branly to brazenly devote an entire exhibit to it? Lord no! ...

by Andy Deemer / Leave a comment
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The Ossuaries of Paris…

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This was like the trip to Disneyworld I've never taken. My golden ticket to Willy Wonka's factory. Our trip to North Korea. I know you've already been. Many times. But walking these two kilometers, I realized why this was one of my mom's favorite places in Paris. Two kilometers of stacked-up ...

by Andy Deemer / 3 Comments
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Phnom Penh Insider Investigates AsiaObscura

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A few months ago, we ran a rather scandalous report on the insane ting mong scarecrows we'd spotted in the jungles of Cambodia. They were terrifying, but we knew almost nothing about them. Our driver was vague, the hotel receptionist insisted she'd never seen them before. So we slapped up the photos, ...

by Andy Deemer / Leave a comment
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Insanely Creepy Cambodian Scarecrows

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It's so easy to be seduced by the beauty and simple peace of Cambodia... Oh, the temples, the jungles, the country roads. Although behind such breathtaking beauty sometimes there hides a wretched darkness. "Wha? What was that?" The first one we passed, we thought it was a man hiding in a bush. Waving a ...

by Andy Deemer / 3 Comments
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The Modern Afterlife

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With Melaka being a culture mix of Indian, Malay, Chinese, Dutch and Portuguese, amongst others, local customs are very much honored and preserved. Buddhists, keeping up with modern times, offer their ancestors the very best in the afterlife. Apart from the expected cash to spend and incense to purify and keep them from ...

by The WooLand Hotel / 2 Comments
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Lucky Fruit (and Ain’t So Lucky Fish)

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Yesterday, these little nectarines showed up at the market. Dyed (branded? scalded? waxed? greased up with dirty stinking chemicals?) with Chinese characters, they read tall (高), shining (照), a thing (事) and happiness (喜). "No, no, no," said Echo, a good friend. "You've bought the wrong ones, and got them in the wrong ...

by Andy Deemer / 1 Comment
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Fake Graveyards outside Beijing

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The Beijing suburbs are expanding like mad.We spent the last ten days living in a small Tongzhou village, an hour east of Beijing, and construction was non-stop.  Every day we were there, a ramshackle house was torn down and replaced by a building site.  New walls would go up in hours.  Bricks and dust were ...

by Andy Deemer / 1 Comment
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Keep the Evil Away For Chinese New Year

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In Zhangbi, an ancient Shanxi village surrounded by sprawling factories, we just discovered the perfect antidote for bad ghosts...  and it's....   Apparently, cypress! I'm not sure how prevalent this is across China, but every old Zhangbi door had a sprig of cypress shoved into it.  "避邪," explained the guide Lucy, who had no idea how to explain ...

by Andy Deemer / Leave a comment