Eye Of The Tiger!

Welcome to my second year as a contributor to the Countdown to Halloween. Last year was fairly haphazard where I'd just grab something remotely Halloweeny and blab about it. This year promises to be just as haphazard but hopefully with a bit of stability.

For starters, I hope to showcase some Yokai of the day. I came across a book called, 妖怪大図鑑 (Yokai Dai Zukan=Big Picture Book of Monsters) written and illustrated by my new favourite author, 水木 しげる (Mizuki Shigeru) of GeGeGe fame. There are more than 150 different Yokai, so that works out to about 5 a day for the month!

Here is the front cover and inside front cover.

The first creature featured is the 倉ぼっこ, Kuro-Bokko which I translate as Guardian God of Warehouses.

(During my free time over the last few weeks at work, I've been diligently translating these but it has become a larger task than I am fit for. Thus, I shall give my amateurish rendition of the name in English and a link in Japanese or English when possible and hopefully a GeGeGe story or figure.) Looking a bit like Cousin It with a cane, the best I can come up with is that this hairy guy guards a warehouse.  If you can read Japanese, hit the wiki link above for details.

I hope to provide a Ghost story every couple of days, such as this from 怪談百物語 (Kaidan Hyaku Monogatari or 100 Tales of Terror) entitled 四谷怪談Yotsuya Kaidan or the Ghost Story of Yotsuya.) Here is an older version on YouTube for your perusal as well.

Finally, I hope to provide something from my personal collection of crap.

Today, though it'll be something special. It just so happens to be my little sister's birthday today, so I solicited from her a few of her Halloween memories. She recalls spending Halloween with a neighbour while my brothers & I Trick or Treated on our own, ignoring the little tag-a-long. My mother usually made all our costumes, and she has dug up a photo of herself from over 40 years ago dressed up as a tiger. Decades later, she handed down the outfit to her son who made it just as ferocious looking. Here is my sis from '74, her son William, aka Tiger-Boy from '94, also with some friends and as a homemade Clown from '93! (I wish I had a single photo of my Halloween years but I don't have ANY!)

Please click around and visit the other participants in the Countdown. There is some awfully awesome stuff out there! Click that or the Cryptkeeper up there on the left to see who else is involved...

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