world fairs

Yesterday we learned that the next season of FX’s hit series will be titled American Horror Story: Hotel, and it was also revealed that singer Lady Gaga has nabbed a starring role. Details about the season are being kept under wraps, which means it’s time we start speculating…

The first thing that came to my mind when I heard the not-so-provocative subtitle for Season 5 was H.H. Holmes, widely considered to be the very first documented ‘serial killer.’ Back in the late 1800s, Holmes confessed to 27 murders, though his actual number of victims could be as high as 200.

Now the reason Holmes came to mind is because of the location where he claimed most of his victims: a hotel. In 1893, Holmes built and opened The World’s Fair Hotel in Chicago, a labyrinthine building that the madman constructed as a sort of death trap – his own personal murder house, if you will.

The hotel consisted of over 100 windowless rooms, as well as many stairways leading to nowhere and doors that could only be opened up from the outside. Once female guests checked into the hotel, they rarely checked out, and he would dispose of their bodies with a secret chute that led to the basement.

From there, Holmes would strip the bodies of their flesh and cut them into pieces, and in a cruel twist he would sell many of the skeletons and organs to medical schools. Other bodies were simply cremated, or boiled in vats of acid.

Holmes was captured and put on trial in 1895, and hanged one year later.

It’s no secret that American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy often draws inspiration from real-life tales of horror, and so it’s not at all a stretch to imagine him using H.H. Holmes’ so-called Murder Castle as the basis for a season. Considering it’s going to be set in a hotel, it seems fairly certain that he’s done just that.

Another compelling bit of information that supports this hunch is that Murphy recently stated that images of black top hats seen throughout the course of Freak Show served as Season 5 clues, and so it’s worth noting that H.H. Holmes was known for wearing… a black top hat. Yea.

American horror stories don’t get much more horrifying than H.H. Holmes’ murder hotel, so I can’t think of a better theme for a season of American Horror Story. Will Hotel bring Holmes back to life or am I totally off base with this guess? We’ll soon find out!

Sheryl McCarthy pictured far right in Liberian dress, at a miniature world’s fair on International Students Night :: Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections Digital Images :: 1968

Sheryl McCarthy
Sheryl McCarthy graduated in 1969 with an English major. She was the first woman columnist for New York Newsday, as well as being a former trustee of the college. She has written for Ms Magazine, USA Today, and The Nation. She currently works actively to connect current students with alumnae in the field of journalism.

In the fair worlds the sidhe rule, beautiful and deadly. In their hunt for pleasures they had grown addicted to the human waste, to radioactive dust and toxic chemicals. Follow Niavin Arkezea, the drug lord of the fae, as he tries to unravel the schemes of the Winter Court and preferably live to count another day’s profit.

The sidhe of the book’s setting are all bisexual (some with minor preferences), and the main character is ace in sexuality-dominated world. I think that should qualify us)

Children. They were teaching children

Rowena, Godric, Salazar; they tended to forget that. They saw young minds, young acolytes - eyes that would look up to them. Not innocence. Not childish wonder.

Toughen them, said Godric.

Make them smart, said Rowena.

And ambitious, above all, said Salazar.

But war and the real world; that was not where children belonged. Aye, they would belong one day, but it was not their part to turn them cruel, make them hard, make their eyes dart sideways always looking for ways to twist the world to further their own ends. They were to protect them. Shield them from the worst so that some good, some kindness would find its way into an ever darkening world. To give them weapons and teach them how to use them, but never tell them that those weapons were their only hope.

She’d seen in all the battles she’d rode out to just how dark the world could be. Was it not their duty to bring light into this world? To fight darkness with light; not with more darkness - with divisiveness and strife and hatred?

I will take them all, she said. 

I will protect the ones you will not. I will save them. I will give them a home. They will be the last rays of all that is good in this world. I will teach them kindness. I will teach them loyalty. I will teach them selflessness.

I will teach them how to be the backbone, the heart of this world. I will teach them how to stand steadfast, when all hope is lost. 

I will teach them how to be human, to be more than just one single word.

No, she knew, theirs would not be an easy path, or a glorious one. They would have no songs. No great tales in books. No laurels. No consolation, no thanks.

But they would be the reason why, when the darkness finally came, all of them in all their different colours would stand shoulder to shoulder and draw their wands as brothers in arms.

Not for achievements. Not for trophies. Not for power.

For goodness. For hope.

And when the time came for them to choose the words that would forever guide the children that would come to them, Helga smiled and engraved, upon a bronze plaque, these words:

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus.

(But her students remembered a very different set of words. Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.)

(Helga Hufflepuff requested by boney-eyes-jefferson)


Amazing Long Term Exposure Photos of Ferris Wheels

The original Ferris Wheel was designed and constructed by George Washington Gale Ferris, Jr. as a landmark for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. The term Ferris wheel later came to be used generically for all such structures, and Ferris wheels are now the most common type of carnival ride at state fairs in the United States.

Since the original 1893 Chicago Ferris Wheel, there have been eight subsequent world’s tallest-ever Ferris wheels. The current record holder is the 165-metre (541 ft) Singapore Flyer, which opened to the public in March 2008.

In the gallery below (most taken at local fairs and carnivals), we see what Ferris wheels look like when captured using a longer exposure (i.e., shutter left open, typically 2 seconds or more). The lights that adorn the Ferris Wheels blend and blur, creating brilliant patterns and beautiful photos.



The biggest problem I have with “yesallwomen” trend is how it not just emphasizes first-world problems, but how it also generalizes ALL women, as if we ALL agree with “yesallwomen.”

Not all women live in fear, and not all women have been raped or abused, but most importantly, not all women are privileged enough to whine on the Internet about things like gendered McDonalds toys and men spreading their legs on the subway.

Your “yesallwomen” is an exercise in privilege above all else, a chance for your first-world “feminists” to whine and snivel about the most meaningless things. And I thought for once, maybe we’d focus on actual issues.

When it comes down to it, you do not speak for me. You speak for your hyper-sensitive, paranoid, delusional, fear-soaked cult of “feminists,” and I have to be the one to say it: That is #NOTALLWOMEN.