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This is a companion story to my Lighter Than Dark warning from Sept. 6, Sewer Alligators, coming soon to a toilet near you… https://hauntedmtl.com/originals/lighter-than-dark/ltd-sewer-alligators/

Kyle, Todd and Lance stared at the swirling blood in the toilet stool.   Floating in the crimson ocean was a small turd and a disintegrating sheet of toilet paper.  It looked as though the commode had been flushed but didn’t fully do so.  Its contents bobbed up and down like buoys in a sea of red.

“Well, this proves it then.  You have sewer alligators,” Lance proclaimed.  “There’s no other explanation.”

“Are you certain your mom was the last one to use it?” Todd asked.

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“Yeah,” Kyle replied.  “I’m pretty sure she must have been bit on the butt.  Maybe that’s why she didn’t flush all the way.”

“Your toilet is crap – it never flushes unless you hold it down,” Todd quipped.  “My mom said women bleed every month unless they’re going to have a baby.”

“That’s ludicrous!”  Lance exclaimed.  “It’s definitely sewer alligators.  What would your mom know – she’s just a dippy hippie.  Nothing bleeds every month and doesn’t die.”

“That’s what my mom said,” Todd shrugged.  “She would know.”

“Well, if your mom does bleed every month, she should get that looked at,” Lance ribbed.  “She might have cancer or something.”

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Kyle reached over and flushed the toilet, holding the handle down for far longer than should have been necessary.  The three boys watched as the ocean of red swirled into a wide whirlpool and was swallowed by the porcelain basin along with the floaters.

Kyle unzipped his pants to pee and stood at the ready, as he’d intended to do when he’d first encountered the bloody stool.  He hadn’t planned to interrupt their game of Ultimate Demolition Derby to put on a show for his best friends, but they were in between rounds and he’d fetched them when he found the blood in the toilet.

 “My mom wouldn’t have held the handle down to flush if there was a sewer alligator trying to chomp on her butt,” Kyle retorted as he peed.  “She was probably doing good to flee with her life.”  He eyed the toilet warily.

“We were in the other room and she didn’t scream or yell or anything,” Todd observed.  “And there’s no such thing as sewer alligators.  So it must be that women bleeding thing.”

“My mom is a total bad ass,” Kyle defended indignantly, seemingly somewhat offended.  “She took on a whole wasp nest with a can of hairspray, a lighter and a pair of kitchen scissors.  She’s not going to cry because of a little sewer alligator.”

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“If your mom’s such a badass, then why didn’t she stay and fight the sewer alligator?” Todd chided.

“Kyle’s right, his mom is a badass.  I was here during that wasp thing – it was crazy,” Lance stated manner-of-factly.  “And there are too sewer alligators.  I read about it in a magazine.  Kyle’s mom must have managed to drive it back down the toilet.  That’s why it isn’t here.  You don’t stick around to fight sewer alligators…”

Todd rolled his eyes, “I told you there’s no such thing as sewer alligators.”

“Well, if you’re so sure, then why don’t you keep watch?  Or are you too scared?” Lance said.

Kyle zipped up his pants and flushed, holding down the handle again.  The basin emptied in an eddy.  It refilled with water and just sat there ominously.

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“Fine,” Todd shouted at Lance.

“You have to stay and watch the toilet until we say you can leave,” Lance smirked, “Or until someone else needs to use it and kicks you out.”

“Whatever.”  Todd shook his head and hunkered down.  He slid his phone out of his pocket and began playing Candy Crash Test Dummies.  He muttered under his breath, “There’s still no such thing as sewer alligators…”

Kyle and Lance returned to the living room to resume their racing game.  Less than three minutes later a shrill yelp resounded forth from the bathroom.  They came running.

Todd was standing there flustered, pointing at the toilet and waving his finger.  He shook all over, his skin blanched to a ghostly pale.

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“See, I told you, there are too sewer alligators,” Lance proudly declared.

“That was no gator,” Todd gasped.  “That was a rat the size of my dog Freet-O.”

“A Chihuahua-sized rat?!” Kyle exclaimed, eyes growing wide.  He edged towards the commode and peered in from the side.  There was nothing inside, just water.  He reached across the basin and dropped the lid as fast as he could.  It landed with a resounding thud.

The three boys raced out of the bathroom and left the toilet to its own devices.  It wasn’t worth waiting around to see what foul creatures lurked within.  Kyle’s mom was going to have to deal with the critter problem on her own.

blood on watercolor paper in a large blotch, body monoprint by Jennifer Weigel
blood on watercolor paper body monoprint by Jennifer Weigel
Portrait of myself with dark makeup and crow skull headdress, backlit by the sun.

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Jennifer Weigel is a multi-disciplinary mixed media conceptual artist residing in Kansas USA. Weigel utilizes a wide range of media to convey her ideas, including assemblage, drawing, fibers, installation, jewelry, painting, performance, photography, sculpture, video and writing. You can find more of her work at: https://www.jenniferweigelart.com/ https://www.jenniferweigelprojects.com/ https://jenniferweigelwords.wordpress.com/

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Jonny

    January 25, 2022 at 12:23 pm

    This is actively the worst thing ever, but I love it.

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Original Series

AI Journey: Little Red Riding Hood, Part 1

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And as promised in Big Bad Poetry, we shall embark on our next AI journey, this time looking at Little Red Riding Hood. I had wanted to depict her as the Big Bad Wolf one and the same, although maybe not so big nor bad. But it just wasn’t happening quite as planned. All of these are based upon the AI generated art and prompts using NightCafe and then created as posters in Canva.

Little Red Riding Hood beautiful woman with red cape hiding her wolf face.  Sinister style, July 29, 2023
Sinister style, July 29, 2023

So I actually like this even better than my original vision, it is playful and even a bit serene (especially given the Sinister style). The wolf is just being a wolf. It’s quite lovely, really. But it wasn’t what I had in mind, so I revisited the idea later to see if I could get that result…

Little Red Riding Hood with wolf face, Artistic Portrait style, Aug. 1, 2023
Artistic Portrait style, Aug. 1, 2023

Well, that’s not quite right…

Wolf face Little Red Riding Hood, Artistic Portrait style, Aug. 1, 2023
Artistic Portrait style, Aug. 1, 2023

Yeah more of the same…

What part of wolf face don't you understand?, Hyperreal style, Aug. 1, 2023
Hyperreal style, Aug. 1, 2023

And as you can see this is starting to devolve quickly. Join us again next week to see how this continued to develop… And if you want to catch the last AI art journey, you can find it on Haunted MTL here. To see more such devolutions into AI generated art, check out the Will the Real Jennifer Weigel Please Stand Up? blog.

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Original Creations

Big Bad poetry by Jennifer Weigel

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So considering my recent revival of a wolfwere and his Lucky Days and Nightmarish Nature’s hostile humanity, it seems we are due for a visit from Little Red Riding Hood, or perhaps even Big Bad himself… Here’s a poem on the subject by Jennifer Weigel.


Over the river and through the wood
flashed the fleet-footed Red Riding Hood
on her way to her “grandmother’s” house.

When running past, who should she see
but just one of the little pigs three
cowering like but a tiny mouse.

“But my dear piggy, what do you fear?”
Red Riding Hood asked as she slunk near,
teeth hidden under a sheepish smile.

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The nervous small pig looked up in fright
and decided that Red was alright,
missing the subtle clues by a mile.

“The Big Bad Wolf, that horrible beast
upon the other wee pigs did feast!”
the last little pig said with a squeal.

Red Riding Hood laughed with a great growl
and threw back her heavy long-robed cowl,
in a vast terrifying reveal.

For she was really the wolf Big Bad
hidden beneath the cape that he had
stolen from Red Riding Hood at point.

“And now I’ve caught you too my pretty
and surely t’wouldn’t be a pity
if I gobbled you up in this joint.”

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T’was then the wee pig leapt to his feet
And cried, “Big Bad Wolf, I shall defeat,
for I am no ordinary swine!”

The little pig also wore sheep’s clothes
spun in spells every woodland witch knows;
Old Granny herself was quite divine.

“Now give me back my granddaughter’s cape,
before I grab you by your ruffed nape
and send you pig-squealing down the road…”

The wolf dropped the cape and ran, that cur,
but Granny was swifter and hexed his fur
and the wolf she turned into a toad.

Thus the moral of this story goes,
when in the woods, no one really knows
what sheepish sheep’s clothing is a ruse
that big bad wolves and old witches use.

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So this is actually an intro to my next AI art journey with NightCafe which developed from me not getting the results I wanted (Little Red Riding Hood herself as a wolf). Here’s a preview with Eric’s versions as he is much more literal in his prompting than I am, but where’s the fun in that? 😉

Prompts (from left to right) in Dark Fantasy style, executed Aug. 1, 2023:

Bipedal wolf in Red Riding Hood’s cloak

Bipedal wolf in Red Riding Hood’s cloak close up portrait

Bipedal wolf in red cloak close up portrait

Portrait of myself with dark makeup and crow skull headdress, backlit by the sun.
Portrait of myself with dark makeup and crow skull headdress, backlit by the sun.

Feel free to check out more of Jennifer Weigel’s work here on Haunted MTL or on her writing, fine art, and conceptual projects websites.

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Original Series

Nightmarish Nature: Horrifying Humans

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So we’re going out on a limb here in this segment of Nightmarish Nature and exploring one of the most terrifying, most dangerous, most impactful species to walk this planet. I’m talking about us of course. Sure, as humans, we may not seem all that horrific to ourselves, but to many other creatures we have been a force of nightmares.

Humans male as drawn by Jennifer Weigel
Humans male as drawn by Jennifer Weigel

Why are we terrifying?

Humans are among those species that engage in massive modifications to our environment to serve our needs, like beavers who dam rivers, elephants who eat all of the new growth scrub to keep the savannahs tree-free, and so on. Yeah, all creatures have some impact on their surroundings, but some take it up a notch, and we do so at an order of magnitude higher still. And we have gotten so good at it that we have managed to exist and thrive in places that would otherwise be inhospitable. We are outwardly adaptive and opportunistic to the point of being exploitative. We are the apex predators now.

Sabertooth cowering as drawn by Jennifer Weigel
Sabertooth cowering as drawn by Jennifer Weigel

We have forced many creatures into extinction, intentionally and not, and have sped up these effects enormously. The National Audobon Society chose the egret as its symbol after it made a comeback from being hunted to near extinction, and it was one of the lucky ones. Many weren’t so lucky, especially if they came in direct conflict with humans, such as wolves and the big cats who were in direct competition, or those who were really specialized in really specific niche circumstances that we pushed out of the way. And this is in only a very very limited scope of our earth’s history, and has since been even more ramped up with industrialization.

Humans female as drawn by Jennifer Weigel
Humans female as drawn by Jennifer Weigel

But humans aren’t all bad are we?

Depends on who you ask… We have created all sorts of incredible opportunities for some species too. Take mice for example. And coyotes. And kudzu. And a whole host of animals whom we’ve domesticated, some of whom wouldn’t have continued to exist otherwise or certainly wouldn’t exist in anything resembling their current forms. And the most massive extinctions occurred long before our arrival, when the earth was still forming and underwent rapid catastrophic changes and swings, decimating critters as they were trying to get a foothold. Nothing is constant except for change; that has always been true.

Wolf begging for cheezborger drawn by Jennifer Weigel
Wolf begging for cheezborger drawn by Jennifer Weigel

So it isn’t my goal to get all eco-con​scious and environmentalist here. Just that I feel if we are going to explore some of the more terrifying aspects of nature, we need to look in the mirror. Because if a consensus were taken right here, right now of all living beings globally as to what is among the most terrifying creatures among us, I’m sure we’d appear on that list.

If you enjoyed this closer-than-kissing-cousins segment of Nightmarish Nature on Horrifying Humans, please check out past segments:

Vampires Among Us

Perilous Parenting

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Freaky Fungus

Worrisome Wasps

Cannibalism

Terrifying Tardigrades

Reindeer Give Pause

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Komodo Dragons

Zombie Snails

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