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Terror Reigns in BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup

2016 September 23
by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

☠ In which nothing has changed: Lydia E. Pinkham, the first woman ever to put her face on product packaging, found herself mercilessly trolled.

The HMS Terror has been found fully preserved in the Arctic, 168 years after the ship went missing.

☠ Diva talk: eight different actresses who’ve played Grizabella in CATS give interviews to compare their experiences.

☠ Allegedly, witches from the Middle Ages stole men’s penises and kept them as pets.

☠ Our #BPAL7wordstory “LUST” winner, GeekDame, wrote this essay in praise of the resulting fragrance – and in anticipation of autumn, the perfect season for wearing it.

☠ The now-defunct prison which once housed Oscar Wilde will be hosting an event to honor the author’s memory.

☠ Florida’s Burmese Python epidemic still hasn’t been contained – in fact, it’s spreading.

☠ In a silly turn of events, black metal music legend Fenriz has been elected to a local Norwegian town council against his will.

☠ Teetotalers and alcoholics alike will probably want to check out Rot-Gut, a Prohibition-era platformer!

☠ Everyone knows this week belonged to Angela Lansbury singing “Beauty and the Beast” at a 25th anniversary film screening. Enjoy through tears below!

Brontë, you stay! Welcome to BPAL’s Weekly Links

2016 September 9
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

☠ Scientists have determined that famed Australopithecus Lucy’s death wasprobably caused by falling from a tree.

☠ Wuthering Depths: Just how big was Emily Brontë’s coffin, anyway?

☠ These CAT scans of plaster casts from Pompeii are not for the faint of heart.

☠ It turns out that when wasps are given colored paper, they build rainbow nests!

☠ Why is South Carolina suddenly plagued by clowns trying to lure kids into the woods?

☠ RIP: The Lady Chablis, breakout star of John Berendt’s Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (who insisted on playing herself in the 1997 film version), has passed away.

☠ Here’s everything you can learn about Disneyland from its strange architectural transitions.

Agony promises to be the most (literally) hellish video game ever made.

☠ Mashup of the year? Here’s the ‘90s show Goosebumps, set to the opening theme from American Horror Story. See below!


Time for #BPAL7wordstory Contest, Round Three: WRATH Edition

2016 August 29
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by black phoenix

wrath mebbe

For the third time, we invite BPAL’s fans to participate in our creative process. Welcome one and all to the return of our Seven Word Story Contest!

Call it what you will — flash fiction, microfiction, writing for short attention spans — we want to see just how imaginative you can get in seven words of fewer between now and 8 September 2016.

The winning story will inspire an original fragrance crafted by BPAL’s head perfumer, and will be featured on the label alongside a credit to the author (who will also receive a free bottle of the blend).

Since everyone’s got the It’s-Too-Damn-Hot angries, we figured we’d devote this edition of the contest to WRATH. Make every word count!

Profanity and violence are allowed, but please do not submit anything suggestive of sexual violence. Multiple entries are fine as well!

The deadline for entries is 8 September 2016.  Please read the rules below before submitting. Email your entries (and any questions about the Contest) to, or tweet them @bpal with the hashtag #BPAL7wordstory.

BPAL Seven Word Story Contest Rules and Regulations

By submitting an entry, you agree to be bound by the Official Submission Guidelines and Rules and represent that you have read and understood all requirements set forth.

How do I submit a 7 Word Story and what are the deadlines?

All submissions must be received by the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab by September 8, 2016. Stories should be submitted online via email to or on Twitter using the #BPAL7wordstory hashtag. On or about September 16, 2016, Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab will announce the selected story.

On October 15, 2016 a fragrance inspired by the winning story will be released for sale on Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, featuring the full text of the story and winner’s name on the label.

Selected authors will receive credit under the name of their choice on the copy text for the fragrance, one bottle of the fragrance inspired by their story, and enviable fame within the Black Phoenix community (no warranties on the fame bit).

By submitting an entry, you agree to be bound by these Official Submission Guidelines and Rules and represent that you have read and understood all requirements set forth below.

  1. Submitted stories must be written in English; stories written in other languages will not be accepted.
  1. All entries must be 7 words or fewer.
  1. Stories must be original and unpublished at the time of submission, including the entrant’s social media accounts. All submissions must be exclusive to the 7 Word Stories Project through April 30, 2017, regardless of whether a story is selected as winner.
  1. All information must be submitted electronically via email ( or Twitter (#BPAL7wordstory).
  1. Stories must only have one author. No coauthored works, please. Because…Seven Words.
  1. A submitted story may not contain any material that is copyrighted or otherwise owned or controlled by someone other than the author (including but not limited to, poetry, music and/or lyrics, characters originally created by others in any medium, and/or stories based on real people and/or other people’s lives, other than public figures). We would be fascinated by how you’d manage it, though.
  1. All submissions should be complete stories which can stand on their own.
  1. By submitting a story, authors (and/or their parents and/or guardians) agree that Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab and any sponsors or other supporters of the 7 Word Stories Project may use the author’s name, image and all or a portion of the submitted story to promote the project, regardless of whether the story entered is selected as winner. Authors who are under the age of 18 must have the permission of their parent or guardian to submit their work.
  1. Employees of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab or any of their respective entities, subsidiaries, and immediate families (spouses, parents, children, and siblings and their spouses) and/or persons living in the same households as such persons of each are not eligible to enter.
  1. All applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations apply. You are responsible for knowing the laws of your jurisdiction with respect to contest entry. The 7 Word Stories Project and these rules will be governed, construed and interpreted under the laws of California. By entering, you agree to be bound by these rules and by the decisions of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, which are final and binding in all respects. Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab reserves the right to change these rules at any time, and in its sole discretion, and to suspend, cancel, postpone or extend the project. Individuals who violate or fail to comply with these rules, violate any law, rule or regulation in connection with participation in the application process, tamper with the operation of the entry process, or engage in any conduct that is detrimental or unfair to Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab, the application process, any other applicants (in each case as determined in Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab’s sole discretion), are subject to disqualification.
  1. By entering, authors retain their copyright but grant Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab the license to use their entire story for promotion of the scent, contest, and the Lab in general.
  1. The Lab agrees to use all commercially reasonable efforts to provide credit in whatever format entrants request (i.e., real name, forum name, other pseudonym).
  1. The winning entry or entries will be selected in the sole discretion of Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab.The Lab reserves the right to select one or more entries based on the quality of entries received. Entries will be judged on their overall narrative, as well as their potential for providing scent inspiration.

Twit Happens: Welcome to BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup

2016 August 26
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits, coming at you via the Black Phoenix Gazette. This week’s batch:

☠ Attention early Christmas shoppers: Truman Capote’s ashes are heading to auction!

☠ To celebrate a stage production inspired by The Twits, a brewery has concocted a beer made from Roald Dahl’s body yeast, gathered from scrapings of his favorite armchair.

☠ Today in geography: learn how Zzyzx, California got its name.

☠ Artist Sigalit Landau submerged a black dress in the Dead Sea for two months. The result is a crystallized thing of beauty!

☠ Explore the hidden world of tenement fortune tellers in 19th century Manhattan.

☠ Before you hop in that time machine, peruse these ten truly disgusting facts aboutancient Roman life.

☠ This ancient Egyptian papyrus contains the earliest known sighting of Algo, the demon star.

☠ Class act: NYC’s Flame Con asked cosplayers to ditch prop guns in honor of Orlando’s Pulse nightclub shooting.

Sir Patrick Stewart goes undercover as a woman in the new trailer for Blunt Talk season 2.

Shall I Compare Thee to a Winter’s Stew? It’s BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup

2016 August 19
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

This guy found (and interviewed) Carmen San Diego!

Ridley Scott’s son is about to make a movie about the Donner Party, adapted from a book proposal (that’s right, the actual book hasn’t been written yet).

Phylicia Rashad is directing the August Wilson classic Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom next month in Los Angeles!

☠ Breitbard: a McSweeney’s list of William Shakespeare’s works filtered through extreme right-wing talking points.

☠ Atlas Obscura takes us inside the world’s only surviving tattoo shop forMedieval pilgrims.

☠ Listen to The Epic of Gilgamesh being read in the original Akkadian!

☠ Ever wonder why it was Turkish Delight in particular that caught C.S. Lewis’ fancy?

☠ Let this go down in history as the week Kyle MacLachlan summed up all ofDune in one tweet – using only emoji.

☠ If you meet a family of skunks on the road, remember: they have all the power.

Welcome to BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup!

2016 August 12
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

The Wire’s Michael K. Williams is volunteering to play Black Manta in the upcoming Aquaman movie!

Masayoshi Matsumoto’s insanely detailed balloon animals are truly works of art.

☠ Of course, if you want your giant isopod to last more than one night,  you’re better off investing in the pillow version.

☠ Check out these rare pics of screen siren Gloria Swanson vamping it up in her NYC home circa 1972.

☠ Archaeologists in Serbia have unearthed a set of magic spells inscribed on tiny rolls of gold and silver, found alongside skeletons of people buried almost 2,000 years ago.

The Getty Museum tried an ancient form of divination from one of their manuscripts – and it worked!

☠ A door to memory: nine quotes from authors celebrating World Indigenous People’s Day.

☠ Relive the glory days of Nabisco’s 1971 “X-Rated” horror toy scandal.

☠ Don’t touch that dial – you’re about to spend the rest of your day listening to this 10-hour Pacman music remix.

Sink or Swim With BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup

2016 August 5
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

☠ Scientists aren’t sure why Corpse Flowers all over the US seem to be blooming simultaneously.

☠ Fans of iconic artist Tom of Finland want to turn his Echo Park house into a historic landmark.

☠ The Neolithic mine at Grime’s Graves is about to host its very first Flint Festival!

☠ A long lost 16th century engraving by Albrecht Dürer was just discovered at a French flea market.

Here’s an Ancient Roman recipe for garum, a delicious fish sauce that was used more frequently than salt.

☠ Enjoy the fascinating history of vellum and parchment, originally intended as substitutes for papyrus.

☠ How Holly Frey and Tracy Wilson, the women behind Stuff You Missed in History Class,became unlikely celebrities.

A royal palace has been discovered in the area believed to be King Arthur’s birthplace.

☠ The latest stop-motion animation film from Laika, a samurai fantasy entitled Kubo and the Two Strings, comes out this month! Check out the fantastic trailer below:


Welcome to BPAL’s Weekly Link Roundup

2016 July 29
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits, coming at you via the Black Phoenix Gazette. This week’s batch:

☠ Pop quiz: Is this the name of a Pokemon, or an early church heretic?

This new orchid species appears to feature the face of Satan!

☠ Someone made this 4m x 4m cube by condensing an entire amusement park.

☠ Soothe your ravenous reblogging urges with the sumptuous (and mostly NSFW) Vintage Occult.

A witch prison has been discovered in 15th century Scottish chapel.

☠ Fast forward to this month, when Di Paolo’s 1435 painting of The Annunciation is being celebrated in a new series of boots and outerwear by Doc Martens.

☠ The Century Guild has mostly run out of BPAL’s series inspired by Gail Potocki’s FREAKS, but a few bottles remain of our perfume inspired by Fedor Jeftichew, aka Jojo the Dog-Faced Boy.

☠ Could this possibly be the actual skull of Mary Magdalene?

☠ Beachtime fun in Karwia, Poland, as a wild boar emerges from the sea and starts bowling over sunbathers. (Believe it or not, yet another boar crashed through the ceiling of a shopping center in Hong Kong last week.)

Pokémon Invading Your BPAL Stash? Send a Pic to Enter Our Contest

2016 July 16
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by black phoenix


Bulbasaur sniffing around your cache of Snake Oil? Meowth lurking amongst the imps?

Between now and August 1st, Pokémon GO players can snap pics of critters invading their BPAL stash and enter to win a $40 gift credit! Share your photo evidence on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtags #BPAL and #GottaSmellEmAll (yes, both), and we’ll randomly draw a winner from the pool.

Get at least one bottle or product in the shot! Multiple entries are fine, but please don’t submit more than one pic per beast. We can’t wait to browse all the extra-smelly wildlife photography.

Ready… set… GO!!

Give Us This Day Our Weekly Links: BPAL’s Friday Roundup

2016 July 15
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by black phoenix


Welcome to our weekly roundup of cherished news bits! This week’s batch:

☠ Creepy artist Gavin Mackey has transformed Pokemon into nightmare creatures.

Is this magical Greek gemstone recovered from the Black Sea merely an amulet, or is it a miniature handbook?

☠ You haven’t lived (or screamed) until you’ve met the bizarre beasties living in Romania’s poison cave.

Shall we take a walk along the UK’s old Corpse Roads?

☠ Hubble’s snapped a pic of the heart of the Crab Nebula that will make you weak in the mandibles.

☠ Be sure to plan your next vacation around this map of Britain’s most haunted Tube stations.

☠ Steep yourself in the bizarre history of household beauty and medical products – with pictures!

☠ Let us pray: the earliest known Marian prayer dates back to the year 250.

☠ It has recently come to Chloe Sevigny’s attention that she trusts the moon. Check her out (as played by Drew Droege) below!