Filed under: non-crime

Random Plug for my Random Blog

Some Questions For Michael Ian Black, Pt. 1.”

Over the next couple of weeks I’ll be posting brief Q & A sessions between me and Michael Ian Black in my personal weblog, Random Lunatic News. The link at the top of this message goes to part 1, where I was happy to find that my questions and my prep surprised him. It’s really just a kind of slow-motion interview, in part because I want to be sure I don’t ask the guy the same stupid questions everyone else does. So far, so good.

The Anomaly Report (non-crime post)

Okay, so the other day I wrote this and published it on my tumblelog, Random Lunatic News: “An idea.” In that post I said the following:

My idea is for a Tumblelog with a design similar to I am Neurotic, with an e-mail address and form for submissions from readers, but ask instead for stories of the strange. Not regurgitated urban legends, but family stories of the strange and unexplained: your granny’s tale of the lady in the hoopskirt; your grandpa’s encounter with the orange flying thing. Most families have these. Sometimes they are b.s. — but some families treasure these tales.

Well, dammit, I went ahead and did it: The Anomaly Report.

I won’t be writing the entries for that site — you will. I will be the site editor. The Anomaly Report will be a repository, a compendium of peoples’ spooky campfire stories, sleepover tales, family ghost stories, family mysteries. Like posts found on PostSecret or I am Neurotic, the contributions will be anonymous. A legal disclaimer will be placed on the site just to make that is clear.

Check out and spread it around, if you find it interesting. Use either the submission form or the e-mail I’ve set aside to use there; be assured if you use the latter your name and e-mail address will remain confidential.

Make your story as brief as possible, but make it fun. If it is truly spooky, make readers feel that.

I won’t pretend that every single submission will make it — especially if it gets popular (who knows if that will happen or not), but most will, especially at first. I’ll also vet submissions to see if they’re just variations on urban legends or cut & paste jobs from another site.

Readers of this blog need to know that this isn’t an alternative to anything else I write, and certainly not a replacement. It’s really not like blogging at all, especially since I will be more editor than writer. You can disregard it completely and stick to what you’re used to, if you like.

I’m looking forward to seeing what kinds of spooky things may haunt you all. It should be fun.

Goodbye, Vicky Lynn…

The news is breaking right now on most cable news channels and online: Anna Nicole Smith collapsed at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida around 1:30 p.m. ET.

In fact, on MSNBC Rita Cosby is reporting that Anna Nicole Smith, born Vicky Lynn Hogan in November, 1967 in Houston, Texas, is dead. The confirmation came from Anna Nicole’s attorney in a phone interview with Rita.

With her at the time was her former attorney and husband, Howard K. Stern, and a bodyguard.

Just after Anna Nicole gave birth to a baby girl in the Bahamas last September, her son Daniel, age 20, passed away under strange circumstances. Circumstances that are still unclear. Howard K. Stern was there when Daniel died, too.

Howard K. Stern is a very unlucky man.

The truth is, Anna Nicole may have been her own worst enemy. Yo-yo dieting, drug use, extreme pressure from negative publicity coming at her from a hundred different directions… maybe her heart gave out.

If she’d been plain old Vicky Lynn still in Houston and she’d lost her son and then died like this months later, just a housewife or workaday woman, that new husband would be subject to much open suspicion. I wonder if that will be the case now.

“Anna Nicole Smith’s romantic partner, longtime lawyer and alleged father of her infant daughter provided her son with one of the drugs that killed him — then tried to cover it up by flushing the remaining pills down the toilet, a report says.

“The charges surfaced Monday as Bahamian officials agreed to conduct a formal inquest into the death of 20-year-old Daniel Smith in his mother’s hospital room there in September, sources told the celebrity Web site…”

A version of this blog entry was first published at my personal weblog.

The Seminole County (Fla) police are investigating Anna Nicole Smith’s death, and the medical examiner will make a determination as to cause. Initial reports are that it was a “cardiac event.” It appears to be a death investigation, though, and not a criminal investigation.

One More Post, Not About Crime

I didn’t intend to make another general purpose post, but something interesting is afoot.

I simply can’t think about and research crime non-stop. It leaves scabs on one’s soul. So I write about other stuff, too.

The other day I wrote an entry at my personal weblog,, about a new YouTube phenomenon, a singer named MaryAnne, who uses the screen name “YsabellaBrave.”

There was still a bit of a mystery to unravel in this story, just not a crime-related mystery. I found out a little bit, and as you’ll see, MaryAnne responded to the blog entry to help me correct some misunderstandings and errors.

I also wrote a slightly different post for the Blogger News Network — more “news-y,” I guess.

Well, that BNN post has been Dugg. That makes the second time in a week something related to MaryAnne has been Dugg, and if you don’t know what Digg is, suffice it to say only is a bigger source of traffic for any website lucky enough (or unlucky — the gigantic surge in traffic has crashed sites of mine before) to get to the front page.

My article about MaryAnne was already on Digg’s front page, last I looked. The creator and editor of BNN, Robert Hayes, told me an hour ago that he’s already had 9,000 hits from the Digg.

Get your head out of true crime for a minute, if you are inclined, and go check out the unfolding story of MaryAnne, YsabellaBrave.

She is as intriguing and potentially as popular as Lonelygirl15. But Lonelygirl15 was an act, and I’ve decided, after some initial skepticism, that I believe MaryAnne is the real deal. As a singer, (something I rarely touch on when crime-blogging), I have to say I think that’s pretty cool.

Now I return you to regularly scheduled crime-blogging.