Sunday, November 16, 2008

"Pagan", Satanic Fast Food, and other related ramblings.

During high school I worked at McDonald's. Only one Gruntonian knows the full extent of my weirdness during that time of my life. There was a group of guys that I worked with that called me "Pagan" or "Matt the Pagan". It started with the way that I made hamburgers on occasion. When I wanted to curse a patron, I made what I called a "Satan Burger". This burger was made with a beef patty with an upsidedown pentagram branded in the meat with a heated up spatula. I would get all giddy thinking what kind of horror would fill a customer's mind when they opened up their burger to see the mark.

I need to explain that as a teenager I was fascinated with occult symbols. I guess it was my way of rebelling against the seemingly strict religious community I was brought up in at the time. One summer, having to take a couple of courses so I could move on to high school, a fellow "failure" brought a book of witchcraft. I thought this book was fairly harmless, but started chanting the spells out loud by the candy machines where we would hang out at. This freaked out some of the students, but especially our teacher.

There was a bit of urban myth that there were some community members and teachers who were witches and satan worshippers. The stories were that they would steal your pets and sacrifice them up in the mountains. I spent many hours wondering who was a witch and where up in our foothills they would practice their rituals.

In the neighboring town to where I lived there was a tall stone cross hidden in a wooded ravine.This is a photograph of the cross. I understand that some dickhead blew it up with a pipe bomb. The cross was always a thing of much speculation and myth. The stories of what would happen there on a full moon or other eventful nights were rather wild. There were tales of hooded figures and animal sacrifice going on there. The few times I made the journey I only found one dead cat and I really couldn't say that it was sacrificed or just placed there to freak the shit out of us meddling kids.

There was only one time that I did come across a grizzly scene of animal sacrifice, or more likely, torture. A friend of mine and I were riding motorcycles in the hills above his house. We were always a bit curious about dead things and if we caught a whiff of death when up in the mountains we'd investigate and try to find the offender. We found Percival's dead horse he shot to put it out of its misery (the hoof tore from its leg after a fall). That was grotesque and about the worst smell I've ever had to intake. That day of riding, however, we caught a whiff of death and what we found was truly disturbing. We got off the bikes and walked through a thicket of oak brush. There, hanging from a tree, was a black dog skinned from the neck down, with its entrails laid down into a pattern of several symbols. I have no idea what must have taken place. All I can think of is the poor dog that was tortured to death. This is about the moment where those spooky fantasies of mine of witchcraft and the occult ended, and the reality of disturbed individuals began its torment upon my awareness.

I occasionally wonder if I have rubbed shoulders in that small town with the individual(s) who committed that horrible act. I guess I will never know.

12 comments:

NYD said...

I am often amazed at the amount of horrible memories I have encountered through conversations with people and how much we all have in common through them.

Julie Schuler said...

I am reading this fast on the heels of learning about the Baby P. story from the UK. Sometimes I am convinced this is a world of shit and monsters.

Scott said...

Wow, wow, that is absolutely terrible. Can't quite imagine.

Scott

megatropolis said...

What? Skinning and disemboweling animals isn't normal behavior? Uggg... that is horrible.

I never dug too deep into that kind of stuff. I wouldn't even to AC/DC after my 9th grade seminary teacher told me how evil it is.

egan said...

So they confirmed this really did happen at that location? I know how wild a boy's imagination can be.

The Grunt said...

NYD~ Those stories fascinate me.

Julie~ It certainly can seem that way at times.

Scott~ It was awful.

Meggypoo~ I hope you listen to AC/DC now.

Egan~ Hey! Good to see you around here again. I need to do my visiting too. The so-called rituals at the cross were just urban legend. I'm sure there were the handful of misguided youth that tried doing "satanic" rites there, but mostly it was a great place to get high and scared. I believe that the cross marks the exact center of the county. There are more wild stories that it was the grave of a woman named Kay--her husband erected the cross as a memorial. It is named Kay's Cross. As for the secret covens, that's all pretty much urban legend too. The tortured/skinned dog happened and I unfortunately know that for a fact, as told in the post. Anyways, during the eighties and seventies the parents around here were obsessed that their kids were going to dabble into satanism. So, this is where a lot of misinformation came from--parents trying to scare us kids from becoming little Anton LaVeys. There's a classic "diary" book of a kid named "Jay's Journal", which turned out to be a total fabrication by author Beatrice Sparks. The author took the identity of a fifteen-year-old boy that committed suicide in Pleasant Grove, Utah and made up a story around his life that the reason he committed suicide was because of satanism. The book is a cult classic in a twisted sort of way, the same with the rest of "Dr." Sparks' so-called diaries of troubled teens books.

Diane Mandy said...

Ok, I'm never letting my dog out of the house again.

egan said...

Oh, thanks for clarifying this. I was hoping the dog thing was fiction, but I guess not. No worries on the blog thing, we all get busy.

Outdoorsy Girl said...

Nothing makes me sadder than animal cruelty. :(

The Grunt said...

Diane~ It's never good to let pets wander off. They're just like children--precious.

Egan~ Yeah, that dog thing showed me that the real evils are rather simple--violence. Whatever semblance of ritual was mute. Besides, I highly doubt there were or are any organized occult groups in this area. Just a highly disturbed person(s) that added a bit of weird theater to their horrible act.

O-Girl~ Human cruelty, perhaps? But we are animals in our own way, so I guess we fall under that umbrella.

vera said...

Mmmmm... Tasty Satan Burgers!

Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun...

Kinda makes me wonder.

/Vera

Tys on Ice said...

when i went thru this phase of satanism, i got a book on spell and chants...couple of my friends and i did the whole pentagram shit and called behomat or something....the spells were all in some other language but had its english phonetics ...nothing happened after we recitied it thrice...suddenly there was a frantic knocking on the door...opening it , we found my mother who came it gave us all a thwack on the head and took away the book and all over paraphernalia .... later we found that when she was in the kitchen, things started falling off the shelves...