Ominous Origins

Join me on a journey into the origins of the unknown. Every legend, every beast, and every myth has it’s beginnings, and it’s time we take a look into the Ominous Origins of our mysterious history.

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Three Men Walk into a Lighthouse…

October 19th, 2021

... And they all vanished. Hell of a punchline, eh? Well that's exactly what happened in December of 1900, three men were at their lighthouse post on the Flannan Isle, Thomas Marshall, James Ducat and Donald MacArthur, when one stormy night they all mysteriously vanished into thin air. There was never a trace of these men found again. Of course, you might think that they all got swept away in the storm, or some other tragic accident, and you might not be wrong. BUT that won't people from theorizing other, more supernatural explanations. 

A popular theory when anybody goes missing, is of course, aliens. Naturally, given the circumstances, and the scene that was left behind it does appear that they were abducted my something otherworldy, and the main reason for this theory: The clocks, every last one within the lighthouse, were frozen, dead, not working. The scene also looked like they were taken in the middle of a meal, as half eaten plates of food were left behind, as well the kitchen was a mess, and a chair tipped over. Aliens.

Other than that, potentially a giant bird up and plucked them from the shores of the isle. Yes, a giant bird. However, this isn't as common, or believable as the alien theory. But whatever did happen on that isle is still a mystery, and the mystery grew even further when their logbook was discovered, and there were some strange passages written within. Spoiler, it involved a bit of crying and a lot of praying. It was almost as if they knew something was going to happen, or perhaps they knew they were being stalked or hunted.

Regardless of what actually happened, the mystery remains, and will probably never be solved. Their bodies were never found, and more than a hundred years later, never will be... Unless the aliens drop them off and they hadn't aged a day. That would be something.

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It‘s a Bird, It‘s a Plane, It‘s the Beast of Gevaudan!

October 8th, 2021

So let's say you live in the 1700's, and let's also say that you live on a farm, or out in the country somewhere, what would be your biggest fear? Well, the city-folk would probably be afraid of muggings and murder, but you, your fears hit a little different. How about being confronted in the middle of the woods in the dead of night by a massive wolf-like beast. It's so ferocious, and it's nothing like you've ever seen. It snarls, snaps it's massive jaws, and before you can blink, your head is clean off. 

If that sounds specific, that's because it is, and that was a real fear many in the Gevaudan area of 1760's France had. There was a beast, something that didn't belong, lurking the countryside, and it did not discriminate. Men, women, and children all fell victim to whatever this beast was. In fact, it got so bad that even Louis XV became involved, and so did a reward for the slaying of the beast - 6,000 Livres, which was a boat-load of money back then. 

The beast was eventually believed to be slain, but shortly after the attacks started again. So just what as this creature? Well, there are many popular theories, ranging from exotic animals imported, and escaping (similar to the alien big cats of a previous episode), to a prehistoric survivor from well... prehistoric times, to that of a serial killer who used an armored dog to do his hunting and wounding, at the very least.

I like that last theory. It seems the most interesting. But regardless of what this beast is, it still remains a mystery, so tell, me, what do you think it was?

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Don‘t Mes(opotamian) with Nergal

September 28th, 2021

We are back again this week, and we're going old school! Literally, we're looking at a God from one of the oldest schools around: Ancient Mesopotamia, and that god is none other than the god of war, and ruler of the underworld, Nergal! Nergal has a bit of an interesting story to him, from humble beginnings as a lowly god of war, to being recognized as the ruler of the underworld. But how, you might ask? Well, a lot of it has to do with interpretation, but mostly good old fashioned hard work and rage!

I mean, who hasn't raged their way to the top (or bottom in this case), and Nergal basically set the world on fire to prove a point: my kind of guy. Regardless of what he did, and who he was, there's something about the ancient Mesopotamian gods that are really interesting to me. I like to think of them as the origin for most, if not all of the religious iconography we have today. There are so many parallels than can be drawn to modern demons, gods, and rituals, which isn't all that surprising really. I like to think of religion as modern day Hollywood, everything is a bit of a copy of something else just a bit older. 

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Baby, it‘s the Baba Yaga

September 15th, 2021

Witches aren't a new thing to this podcast. I've covered the Salem witch trials, and some lesser known witches throughout history, but today we cover the mother of them all; the Baba Yaga. While she's not technically the mother of witches, she has links to various cultures the world over, albeit by different names. The Baba Yaga is of Slavic origins, and she's sort of an anti-hero or villain. She's not necessarily evil, but certainly wants to be left alone. But, she will mess your day up if you do bother her by doing things such as, well, eating you. 

On the other side of things, she always keeps her word. Generally when approached she will give the trespasser some laundry list of near impossible tasks to complete in exchange for something. If you manage to complete said tasks, she'll stick to her word and give you what you seek - but there might just be consequences to claiming your prize, like in the story of Vasilisa. In this Cinderella like tale, young Vasilisa gets stuck with an evil stepmom who punishes her and her own kids. Well, one day the family needed more light in their cabin, and so Vasilisa was tasked with finding some when she bumped into good ol' Baba Yaga. She completed the impossible tasks and was given a lantern, which exploded upon entering the cabin, killing her step family in a gruesome fire. While Vasilisa was technically freed from her terrible life, it came at a great cost.

Like I said, there are stories all over the world of similar creatures to the Baba Yaga, and they generally go by the generic term of Hag. But if you want more more, you'll just have to listen to the episode!

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Giddy Up, It‘s Suspect Time! | Texarkana Phantom Killer FINALE!

September 7th, 2021

We've made it, we got through another series, and we end our look at the Texarkana Phantom Killer with looking at the suspects. And there were a few, but given when all this took place (1946), pinning anybody to the crimes was tough without a confession, even though they might have had one.

The main guy we're looking at here is Youell Swinney, who when confronted by police, told them not to shoot, and that he didn't want the electric chair. This, naturally, confused the officers who in turn asked why any of those things would happen to a guy who stole cars, to which he replied, "You have me for more than that, don't you." Implying quite a bit there. Oh, also his wife confessed to him killing people. So, there's that.

Of course there are a million reason why his wife might lie. He's a criminal, and maybe abusive, so if she got him locked up for life, she could start over. It didn't help that she recanted her confession later on. There was a ton of evidence against him, but most of it was classified as circumstantial. 

All in all, there were over 400 suspects interviewed for the crimes, yet, none were ever charged. 

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Howdy, Par’dner | Texarkana Phantom Killer Part 2

August 30th, 2021

Continuing with our looking into the Phantom Killer that stalked the night of 1940's Texarkana, we look at those involved with attempting to catch this serial madman. From local law enforcement, to the state rangers, this case had it all when it came to the investigators involved. 

We have the first responders in local sheriffs, to the Lone Wolf, who stole the show, despite doing nothing. Let's explore that a little bit further, shall we. Going by the nickname, Lone Wolf, Texas Ranger Manuel Gonzuallas came into town with a reputation for being a gunslinging badass who once gunned down two convicts with his duel pearl handled revolvers. Turns out, his reputation preceded him, as he was also very handsome and charming. All the lady reporters swooned over him and would kill for just ten minutes alone with the guy, which in turned caused issues during the investigation. Issues including bringing a woman from a prominent magazine at the time to one of the crime scenes to "Re-enact" the murder. Most thought it was something else, and they're probably right.

Despite all the media attention the Lone Wolf was getting, by the accounts of his peers, he did bugger all, stole other officers reports and presented them to the media as his own. Typical pretty boy behavior! Nevertheless, despite promising he would stay in town until the killer was caught, he left three months after the last murder without so much as even a lead suspect.

The other officers seemed competent enough, with years of experience, many of whom were WWI and WWII vets. However, despite any evidence they collected was rendered almost useless given the technological limitations of the time. The investigation relied on eye-witness reports and piecing together the whereabouts of "missing" peoples during the times of the murders. It led to one suspect, but that's for next week's episode!

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Yee-Haw, It’s The Texarkana Phantom

August 23rd, 2021

So we've gone from the Seven Deadly Sins, to... True crime? Yup, that's what you get with this podcast. However, this true crime story involves a phantom, so it might just have a supernatural twist. The story goes that in 1946, over the course of several months a man committed some pretty heinous crimes. In a series of events that precedes the zodiac killer by a good twenty years, a man draped in a a pillowcase-esque mask began terrorizing the town of Texarkana, which falls both in Texas and Arkansas. He started with an assault, both physical and sexual in nature and quickly worked his way up to murder. By the end of his reign of terror, he had killed five people and attacked eight.

The town was obviously terrified, and there were no immediate suspects, despite there being tons of rumors and rewards posted. Just like the Zodiac killer twenty years later, he stalked couples who were isolated in a lover's lane type area, and used a pistol to gun them down, mostly execution style as well. But that's where I'll leave it for this episode. This will be split into a series, so next time we'll look at the investigation and investigators involved in the case - and boy are there are lot. The FBI even became involved with the crimes at one point. 

The events in 1946 Texarkana spawned two films, one in the 70's and one based on the murders in the first film in 2014. Both are worth a watch in my little opinion, but that's for another podcast. As for the Phantom himself, I can't wait to share what we find on the next episode!

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Wrath, Greed, and Pride, Oh My! | Seven Deadly Sins final

August 13th, 2021

We've made it! You and me, us... We did it, we got through the seven deadly sins, and we did it together, which makes it more special. It's been a long and winding road, but here we are with the final three sins. Greed, Wrath, and Pride. Arguably, they are the three biggest ones, and they all intersect with one another in some way, shape, or form. 

Greed is pretty obvious, wanting more than you have, mostly for material desires. Why by a Lambo when your Toyota can do the trick. you greedy bastard! Of course, it's much deeper than that, but for such a frowned upon sin, there isn't too much written on it in the religious sense. There have been cultural and societal studies on greed and its impact, but they aren't really all that relevant to this episode. But it is believed greed can lead to wrath.

Wrath! My old friend. Anybody who's listened to Cheer and Loathing knows I'm quick to wrath, and that goes for a lot of people. Have a neighbor who plays music too loud, and you've wished nothing but death on them? You've committed the sin of Wrath! How dare you. Perhaps you're a catholic who'd rather stone a homosexual than let them get married - yeah, ironically, wrath. That's a theme. Of course wrath is one of the two biggies due to the possibility of harm befalling somebody out of rage or anger, but it pales in comparison to our next sin.

Pride! How dare you be proud of what you've done, you swine! At least, that's how the church looks at it. Pride is the first sin, the one Lucifer committed before his big ol' fall, and therefore it's deeply looked down upon. Of course, I've never met a not "proud Christian," so again, a little bit strange that it's a deadly sin, let alone the worst one. However, it's believed that too much pride eats away at your ability to convene with God and love him completely. After all, if you're prideful, then you love yourself, and you can't possibly have room for your lord and savoir.

In case you couldn't tell, this was ripe with sarcasm. In my journey into the deadly sins, I discovered something that I knew was always there - the rules, the regulations, the... everything, associated with the church (at least on the surface level) is terribly hypocritical and nonsensical. It's difficult to keep your feelings separate from this stuff when you've been looking into for the past few months, and it's not my intention to offend, just speak the truth that I uncovered. Anyway, it's good to be back!

 

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Where the F*ck have I been?

August 9th, 2021

Hello there! Long time no see, I hope all is well with you. Sadly, for a long time, not all was well with me. As this episode will explain, I had a rough go of things the last month and a bit, and I was in no shape to live, let alone do this podcast. BUT, things are starting to get better over here, so here's hoping I can stick to a more consistent schedule from here on out. Thank you all for your support.

Seven Deadly Sins | Sloths Aren’t Just Cute Animals

June 28th, 2021

We continue our look into the seven deadly sins, and this week we wade the cute and adorable, tree loving sloths! Wait, no, it's couch loving people, the close relative of the sloth. Yes, this week we discuss one of the lesser sins, the gateway sin I like to call it, sloth. Now, you might just think it's about being lazy, putting things off, not participating, etc... and you'd be right for the most part. Of course, there's more to it than that. It's seen by Catholics as not contributing to the betterment of mankind, thus hurting God's vision for the world, and we can't have that, can we?

Sloth is one of the sins that doesn't have a lot of information available on it. It's mentioned a few times from various philosophers and religious scholars, but ultimately, like I said, it's a lesser on. BUT, it can lead to other sins such as gluttony, envy, and maybe even lust. It's also one I think most of us can relate to the most. We've all had times or days that were wasted, just sitting around doing bugger all. Thankfully, most of us don't live our entire lives in that state. Besides all that, it has one of the most gruesome deaths in Seven, so there's that.

For more information, you'll just have to listen all the way through.

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