On October 12, I had the pleasure of finally meeting my favorite mortician, Caitlin Doughty. It was a signing for her second published work, From Here to Eternity: Travelling the World to Find the Good Death hosted by distinguished D.C. bookstore Politics and Prose. The same humor and charisma that makes Doughty’s “Ask a Mortician” YouTube series so successful lends itself well to writing and book promotion, delighting her audience and readers. When I first covered Doughty in an interview and book review in 2014, I called her a death geek to highlight her relevance to our site. Now it’s increasingly clear that no stretch of the imagination is needed to show that the good death movement and feminist movement are intertwined. Continue reading From Here to Eternity by Caitlin Doughty: Review and Signing Experience
We at The Daily Geekette were saddened to learn that the Arts lost another great contributor this year: Natalie Babbitt. Known best for her 1975 novel Tuck Everlasting, Ms. Babbit was an award-winning author and illustrator of numerous children’s books. Continue reading In Memoriam: Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting Author (1932-2016)
2016 is about as steady as The Waco Kid’s shooting hand. We’ve lost another great talent, folks: actor, screenwriter, director, and author Gene Wilder. He passed away at age 83 from complications of Alzheimer’s disease.
Born Jerome Silberman, the Wisconsin native began his studies in acting at the age of 13. His breakout role was Leopold Bloom in Mel Brooks’s non-musical film, The Producers (1968). He shot to recognition in the ’70s with memorable performances in Willy Wonky and the Chocolate Factory, Blazing Saddles, and Young Frankenstein. He wrote, directed, and starred in 1975’s musical comedy, The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes’ Smarter Brother. He had a successful comedy partnership with Richard Pryor in Silver Streak and Stir Crazy . In the mid-80s, Wilder married Saturday Night Live star Gilda Radnor. Radnor’s later death motivated Wilder to promote cancer awareness by founding a support group, Gilda’s Club, as well as an ovarian cancer detection center in her name.
After his acting career declined in the 1990s, Wilder faced his own cancer battle with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. By 2005 it was in complete remission, and he found new success in writing memoirs. He later transitioned to fiction writing, with My French Whore and The Woman Who Wouldn’t. And, as anyone on the internet would tell you, he also had renewed popularity as a sarcastic meme.
We’ll miss you, Mr. Wilder.
This summer, I had the opportunity to visit Toronto, Ontario and attend an exquisite little show at the Bata Shoe Museum that I had discovered whilst searching the web for my museum exhibits article from April. Despite the specific name of the museum, this beautifully-curated exhibit contained vast amounts of information and a darling selection of extant 19th-century garments, accessories, and related manufacturing equipment, in addition to, of course, a lovely and satisfying variety of shoes.
Fashion Victims: The Pleasures and Perils of Dress in the 19th Century is a gem of an exhibit that would interest not just lovers of footwear, but those who are fond of the strange, dark, dirty and tragic side of the 1800s.
Sadness has fallen upon the film scoring community, and movie fandom at large, as James Horner, the famous composer known for his memorable melodies from films such as Titanic and Avatar, has been killed in a plane crash. Horner was 61.
This post will be updated throughout the day as the Geekettes add their own thoughts on the life of Leonard Nimoy. Please don't hesitate to share your own.
Pop culture, not just geek culture, lost a great icon today. Leonard Nimoy passed away this morning in Los Angeles at the age of 83. End-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease claimed his life after being hospitalized earlier this week. Nimoy announced his illness last year and attributed to a history of smoking, though he’d quit thirty years ago. But let’s not reduce a great man to the unfortunate circumstances of his death. And we’re not saying that simply because of Star Trek. The Boston native wore many hats throughout his life: actor, director, poet, photographer, musician, father, friend.
Please part your fingers in a Vulcan salute with us as we remember a truly great life.
There is a rumor floating around that Warner Brothers has a movie in the works based on Neil Gaiman’s Sandman graphic novels. There really isn’t much concrete, just a confirmation that there is a draft of a script, which the studio approves of. At this point no speculation on casting choices, potential directors or release dates are available. Still, this rumor is both thrilling and sort of devastating. Continue reading Death and Thessaly: “Sandman” Movie Rumors
If you have a taste for the macabre, The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Death Becomes Her: A Century of Mourning Attire is a little polished gem of jet for those with perhaps a bleaker mindset, but also for those who simply possess an interest in the history of costume and fashion.
Do you like to watch real-life mystery, crime and forensic programs, or are you a fan of any number of serialized, fictional television shows that rely heavily on crime scene and forensic investigation? Does the name Frances Glessner Lee ring any bells for you? Yes? Awesome! No? Well, it didn’t for me, either, until I watched a fascinating little documentary called Of Dolls & Murder.
You might now be wondering exactly how it is that Glessner Lee fits into the world of art and design, but all one must do is take a look at part of her legacy—a collection of 18 or 19 (sources differ as to the actual number) dollhouse-like dioramas, diminutive masterpieces known as the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death— to realize that not only was this woman a visionary who was ahead of her time while challenging the male-dominated world of police work and crime-solving, but that she was also an artisan in her own respect.
Caitlin Doughty is a death geek. She has devoted her life to promoting death-positivity, a healthier view towards death than is currently embraced by our society at large. By her view, we should accept death as a part of life and stop treating it as the source of all evil or even worse, as a taboo. Her debut book gives a behind-the-scenes look at her work as a mortician, perhaps in more detail than you ever wanted to know, but her frank and honest depiction of death conveys an important message to a society that too often ignores and hides from it. Continue reading Smoke Gets in Your Eyes – a Review and Interview with Caitlin Doughty