The Devil Queen

How my wife and I sold our souls to the Queen Anne Victorian we tried to save.

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Location: Crow Mountain, Arkansas, United States

Synopsis: This is a cautionary tale. A seriously disturbed couple find the charming, old ruin of a Queen Anne Victorian in Russellville, Arkansas, and buy it for $1.00. They tore the roof off, cut it in half, and had it moved to some land they owned sixteen miles away because they didn't know any better. Since then, they have hired and fired contractors, had all of their tools stolen, re-wired, re-plumbed, insulated, and essentially rebuilt the entire house. Their only problem is that after four years it still isn't finished. Now they are tired, broke, and wonder what in the hell it is they've done to themselves. And, it's haunted.
(Last updated on April 3, 2008)

Press: Russellville Courier Article - December 2003, HGTV website article, AP story - October 2006, and Victorian Homes Magazine - February 2008 (link coming soon).
Art: From time to time, I receive requests for my art. If you would like to look at more of my art, go to The Failed Artist. If you would like to buy my art, email me. I am more than happy to answer any questions you might have. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Will I Burn in Hell?

Ladies and gentlemen, I need some hand holding. What do you think about a door like this for the Devil Queen? Since her original, 118 year old door was done in by some morally degenerate thief, I need a replacement. And, I need it soon because what is left of the original door is falling apart. So, waiting for months or years for the perfect, period piece is not an option.

Will I burn in hell for replacing our kicked-in front door with something like this? This door is new, solid wood from National Home Center.
Yes, there is a special place for people like you.
No, but it still sucks.
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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Odd Finding

A couple of weeks ago, Kenny was out to give a quote for fixing the door. While we were talking, he asked, "So have you ever found any Indian stuff here?"

"Nope. Not a thing."

"Years ago, before all these houses were here, a friend of mine came up here to do some hunting. He said there was stuff all over the place up here."


"Yeah, this creek," Kenny said pointing to the creek behind our house, "is year-round. They were up here all the time. If you go down the creek a ways and past the waterfall, he said there were caves. He said the floors of them are covered in arrow heads, hatched, and spear tips."


"I asked him if caught anything when he got back, and he said, 'no.' I asked him if was gonna come up here again and he said, 'hell no, there Indian stuff all over, I ain't goin' near it,'" Kenny said.
We talked a bit more, but I never got a straight answer about it. The conclusion I came away with is that the Indian stuff is cursed or bad mojo, and no one with any sense would mess with it. A lot of the people in Pope County, particularly the long time residents (4+ generations) are at least a little Indian (Cherokee for the most part), which could have a lot to do with it. Something to think about, a cursed house on cursed land.

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Friday, December 05, 2008

The 2008 Dumbass Award

Things have been a bit miserable around here lately: break-ins, a demon plague of blowflies, and a serious case of the flu. In an attempt to shrug off the oppression and misery, I thought that I'd post this year's Dumbass Award. For those of you not familiar with this fine, time-honored tradition, click here.

To be honest, I'm not sure if it's the dumbest thing anyone has done for the award. I'd argue that my mother-in-law nearly cutting her little toe off with the pressure washer was a probably a dumber thing to do, but it wasn't as wild of a story. If I've learned anything from the Dumbass Award, it's that bribery works and that the telling of the story is almost more important than the story itself

Anyhow, the 2008 Dumbass Award goes to Aunt Candy and her daughter Alicia for spending two days on the side of the road looking for an eye.

Of course there is a back story.

Candy's older daughter, Misty, was working at the Pancake House in Conway, Arkansas. As is typical for Misty's luck, the Pancake House was being robbed, and an irate young man was holding a gun to her head as he bagged all the cash he could find. The owner of the Pancake House, a friend of the family (distant enough that I don't know his name) heard that his restaurant was being robbed on the police scanner (some people listen to these for fun apparently).

Distraught, he jumped in his car a drove off to the Pancake House. This resulted in a traffic accident which was serious enough to eject his glass eye through the car windshield.

A little later, Candy and Alicia were at his bedside in the ICU. He was unconscious. Neither was aware that he had a glass eye or that it was missing. All they knew was that there was a huge, caved-in hollow in the middle of his face. Alicia stood looking over Candy's shoulder at their friend.

"Mamma. Mamma."

"What is it?" Candy said.

"Look," Alicia said.

"At what?"

"His eye. Mamma, where's his eye?

About this time, their friend woke up. He was very distraught to discover that his glass eye was missing, and they vowed that they'd find it for him.

They spent hours over the next two days wandering up and down the shoulder of the highway near the scene of the accident, looking for his eye. People, mistaking Candy and Alicia for stranded motorists, would stop and ask if they needed help.

"Yes, we need help. We're looking for an eye." Some drove off, but a surprising number of motorists stopped and helped them look for the eye, including an entire crew of electricians from a local power utility at one point.

Lamentably, no eye was ever found.

The only bit of drama came when Alicia found a small, rubber ball. "Momma! Look! The eye! I found it!" Then she threw it at Candy. Candy did the typical movie slow-motion scene: the sprint, the dive, and the accompanying "Nooooooooooo!!!!"

At the end of the story's telling on Thanksgiving, Candy said, "Really, though. Only this family has crazy stories about stuff like this! Does anyone outside us have stories about glass eyes?!"

Debbie, a cousin of my mother-in-law's and a parole officer, said, "Sure, it happens all the time. My friend X----- was at the Western Sizzlin, and this guy choked. Well, she has her certification, so she did the Heimlich on him. Saved him, but she sure popped that glass eye right out of his head."

What is even better, is that after telling the story to my Dad and sister over lunch, my Dad asks my sister, "So, do you have any glass eye stories?" I think he meant this rhetorically. My sister says, "Actually, one of Matt's aunts has a glass eye. She had cancer."

My Dad looked momentarily shocked, I just laughed.

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Would You Do This for $100?

So, what if someone offered you $100 to spend the night in your house because they thought your house was really cool and totally haunted? Would you let them? What if it was for their Honeymoon?

Would you let them spend the night there alone?
Yes, but I'd want more money.
Yes, but not for their Honeymoon.
Yes, no questions asked.
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