“I’M NOT A MONSTER”: John Wayne Gacy

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By ExoticHippieQueen © 2012

Few serial killers can claim the level of macabre notoriety in a contemporary setting as John Wayne Gacy. His name alone, when heard or read, initiates fear, repulsion and disgust. Gacy’s ability to strike these unpleasant emotions in us live on long past his relatively short time here on earth. Gacy, once voted “Man of the Year’ by the Jaycee’s, holds rank with the most famous killers of our time including Richard Speck, Charles Manson, Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer.

While Gacy was in his teens, he and his father, an abusive alcoholic, suffered a difficult relationship. Even though Gacy Sr. was an unpleasant man, the young Gacy deeply loved him, and never stopped trying to win his love and attention. The two were never able to build a positive relationship before Gacy Sr. died, something which Gacy always regretted. One could theorize that this situation was possibly one of many contributing factors in the events yet to come.

Although Gacy and his father were estranged, his relationship with his mother and sisters was very strong. They provided support for him through the years as he suffered from a variety of health conditions related to his back, brain and heart. During Gacy’s early adult years, he married Marlynn Myers, had a daughter, and lived what appeared to be a “normal” life to those around him. He immersed himself in philanthropic activities within his community, mostly with the Jaycee’s, but other organizations as well. A constant theme throughout his life was his desire to be well-liked, accepted and esteemed within his community, and this was most important to him. Perhaps his inability to achieve the attention and love of his father was again a driving force here. He volunteered as Pogo the Clown and became well-known for this incongruous choice of identities.

Unfortunately, even as Gacy wore the mask of normalcy, the dark stirrings of his heart secretly grew. Rumors of his sexual activities with young men began to spread around the community that he strived to shine in. Through his adult life, he continued to drift in and out of trouble, always with the same theme, sexual misconduct with young boys on the perimeter of his life who had accidentally fallen into his sticky web. Finally the day arrived when he was unable to extricate himself from the accusations.

In the spring of 1968, Gacy was indicted by a Black Hawk County grand jury for allegedly committing sodomy with Mark Miller, a teenage boy who knew him. An emotional Mark Miller told the courts that Gacy had tricked him into being tied up during a visit to Gacy’s home, where Gacy violently raped him. Later when the facts were revealed, this scenario was played out over and over again with his victims.

Gacy spent ten years at the Iowa State Reformatory for men, which was the maximum sentence for that type of crime. He was twenty-six when he entered prison for the first time and was reportedly a model prisoner. Marlynn divorced him shortly after he was incarcerated on the grounds that he violated their marriage vows.

After Gacy’s release from prison, he quickly and deftly managed to set his life back on track. He returned to his hometown of Chicago, bought a 1950’s ranch home and was hired as a chef, just one of the many different hats that Gacy wore through out his life. Like a chameleon, he changed into whatever was needed at the time, and worked in construction, sales, and retail management. He was a clever businessman and entrepreneur whose engaging personality served him well. During his prison years, he created chilling paintings of clowns that would disturb anyone.

In 1972, Gacy married Carole Hoff, an emotionally vulnerable young mother of two daughers. Carole knew of his criminal past but was confident that he had moved past that and on to a bright future. He started a construction business and continued to work steadily at gaining the attention and approval of his friends and neighbors by throwing huge barbecue’s, one with 300 people attending. The good times didn’t last long. Only three years later, Gacy and Carole’s sex life had come to a halt, and the rumors about his homosexual desires for young boys began to creep further into their marital life. Gacy became more nonchalant about leaving reading materials around the house with content centered around naked boys and men, leaving no doubt in Carole’s mind as to where her husband’s desires were focused.

During this period of Gacy’s life, he cultivated an interest in politics and befriended Robert Matwick, the democratic party committeeman for Norwood Park. Matwick was impressed with Gacy’s heart for volunteering, personality and determination, but once Gacy was accused of molesting a boy who helped him clean the democratic party headquarters, that all quickly changed. In 1976, three months after Carole left Gacy, he took his first victim, Billy Carroll, Jr. He went on to take 32 more lives, all young boys or men, whom he tricked into coming home with him. After murdering them, Gacy disposed of the bodies under his house, sprinkling them with lime to speed up the process of decomposition. The rancid odor of death began to seep into the house.

As more and more young men in the area who were associated with Gacy began to disappear, the police began to quietly monitor his comings and goings. The fist time they obtained a search warrant and inspected under his home, no disturbance of the ground under his house could be detected, but later at another search warrant, they saw the evidence that they needed to connect Gacy and the missing victims. They found the remains of a body. When the medical examiner arrived to examine the remains, the suspicious odor in the house told him what he needed to know before any facts were revealed: death in the house.

On December 22, 1978, Gacy admitted to killing more than 30 males and burying most of them under his house. He also said that after setting his victims up, he lured them into being handcuffed and stuffed a sock or underwear into their mouths to muffle their screams. He then killed them by putting a rope or a board against their throats while he brutally raped them. Sometimes he kept the dead bodies under his bed or in the attic for hours before burying them.

After only two hours of deliberation, Gacy was found guilty on 33 counts of murder and was executed in May of 1994 by lethal injection at the age of 52. There was a complication during the execution when the IV clogged, but ultimately, the job was done. His final words? “Kiss my ass.”

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As a footnote, my mother worked as a cosmetician at Glen Ellyn Rexall Drugs on Roosevelt Road in Glen Ellyn, Illinois for many years, including the 1970’s. She told me that a man named John Gacy was remodeling the drugstore, and that he was very nice, even charming. He invited her out to dinner several times, but being a married woman, she graciously declined. Most likely he was just lonely and in need of some companionship. Only much later did she learn that she might have eaten dinner with the man known as the “Killer Clown.”

Currently, “The Gacy Play” is playing at the Sideshow Theater in Chicago. This morning I spoke on the air with WGN radio and told my mother’s story to the director and cast of the play, who were guests promoting their play. We discussed how personable and charming he appeared to be while secretly murdering his victims without remorse, a true sociopath.

Now, an additional footnote. I was contacted this morning by Alison True with Norwester Productions. She had read my hub and was actively involve in putting pressure on authorities to investigate the possibility of additional undiscovered bodies still buried on the northwest side of Chicago, and asked me to do what I can to spotlight this situation to give closure to the families. Please visit this site. Here’s the link: http://johnwaynegacynews.com/

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Her Tapestry Atrocity

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Death By Cat TapestrySource: Google image

 

By ExoticHippieQueen  ©2011

Gleefully, she smashed his corpulent, twitching fingers with a nearby book, “Moby Dick”. At least she chose a classic, a heavy one. Impatient with his laziness during their brief and ill-fated marriage, she felt that even now he just wasn’t dying fast enough to suit her. While bashing his fingers did not expedite his impending demise, it certainly did give her a bit of sadistic pleasure. How long does it take to finish a fatal heart attack when you’re 94, for god’s sake?

Spittle lolled from the corner of his slightly parted, slack lips, now turning a satisfying shade of blue, not unlike that one silk blouse she snagged at Macy’s last clearance in April. No, not the one with the long sleeves, the other one.

His concave chest remained motionless, no longer heaving in paroxysms of oxygen deprivation. She was ever so thankful for that. There certainly will be no calling for help.  Cautiously leaning forward into his ashen face, she strained in an effort to feel any evidence of his putrid, exhaled breath moving toward her. Detecting none, her lopsided mouth froze in a contorted half smile of smug satisfaction, catching herself as she nearly lost her balance, teetering on three-inch, plastic, spike heels.

This was the perfect moment for an impromptu celebration. Jeweled fingers snakewrapped around thecrystal decanter that held her liquid medication. After first appreciating the fine cut of the stopper, she hastily poured her favorite scotch into a monogrammed glass, jowls quivering in anticipation. At least half of the scotch rebounded over the sides, staining the Irish lace beneath. Rapidly tossing back two of her husband’s Vicodin first, she was then ready to welcome the familiar, warm burn travelling down her throat, heavily compromised by years of similar abuse.

Back to work. Placing one ear over his imploded heart, a muffled thud could still be faintly detected, however erratic its’ rhythm. Shocked and wide-eyed in disbelief, she accepted the new realization that it would be necessary to initiate an unpleasant but effective, fatal intervention…but what?

She straightened herself with a self-confident determination that only those who have crossed that fuzzy, crooked line into controlled insanity can appreciate. Across the room, next to the newest issue of “Tie Me Up”, she zeroed in on a pair of very large scissors, recently sharpened by Tiko, her handyman. On second thought, stabbing him would be far too messy. Too late for poison. There were no plastic bags in the house for suffocation purposes….simply not allowed. How about a pillow? Clean, easy and mercifully quick, she could finish him off in a minute or two with no more mess than a little elbow grease.

She lunged for one of the oversized tapestry pillows that she practically stole from Bloomingdale’ three day spring clearance, now perched on the green chaise lounge. Her husband’s frail, crumpled frame, hovering near lifelessness, lie on the farthest corner of the dining room floor on her beloved oriental rug with the gold fringe. God forbid that any of his body fluids ooze onto it. She had heard that happens after death. She would have to be very, very careful. With one of her well-manicured hands clutching each side of the pillow, she slowly stepped over his body, straddling him like a fine race horse. Well, a nearly dead, fine race horse. Bixby, her blue tip Himalayan cat, continued languidly licking his hind leg, pointed up toward the ceiling in the direction of his owner’s soon-to-be-departed soul. In one sudden swoop, she thwacked the pillow dead on his wizened old face, and laid atop it for extra pressure until she felt confident that surely he must be dead by now. Actually, she found the position quite comfortable, and rested there for nearly ten minutes while mentally planning her dinner for that evening. Lamb chops, perhaps? A nice pinot noir to accompany it would be so very perfect, as she removed the pillow, inch by inch and smiled, looking up and out her clerestory windows. What a glorious day it was today! A small sprig of spinach from the spring salad she had inhaled at lunch was still lodged between her two front teeth, creating a ridiculous image as she caught sight of herself in the mirrored wall.

Lowering her enormous bottom into a nearby wing chair, she began to think of the short but miserable life that she had lived, no make that, endured with this old man. With a 40 year age difference, it had been less a marriage and more of a caretaker arrangement. His annoying habits and constant needs irritated her endlessly until this apparent heart attack struck like a bolt of opportunistic lightning. She had been plotting an escape from this nightmare for the past several years, just after his snarky doctor joyfully declared him to be in excellent health.

It was so ridiculously simple to sit at a comfortable distance and watch him gasp, wheeze and stagger to the floor. While it was a small inconvenience to be required to provide additional fatal support, it was the very least she could do for him…yes, the very minimum.

All that was left to do now in the way of dirty work was to call 911 and tell them that she had just discovered her husband dead as a bug (on the rug) from an apparent heart attack. Absentmindedly, she kicked his spindly leg out of her way, as she nearly sprinted the best she could to her pink, pearled cell phone. This was too perfect! Laughing to herself, she smoothed down a stray strand of hair and tucked it behind her ear as she placed the call.

The old codger was quickly waked and buried with the appropriate honor and dignity given a man of his reputation. She shed the required number of artificial tear drops (thank you, Clear Eyes) at his gravesite, but her mind was not engaged in funereal mourning. Instead, it lustfully played with all the imaginings, thrills and delights of the estate she would inherit worth 4.5 million dollars.  Every single penny had already been spent in her mind, starting with unloading one stuffy mansion for something more playful, and definitely sexier, with an infinity pool in, say….Belize? One pool boy on the side. Maybe two.

Almost a week later, the Murgletroy police unexpectedly appeared on her portico, a surprise visit. The tight handcuffs pinched her plump wrists, forcing her to utter a number of profanities while she was read her rights and charged with second degree murder.

Though seemingly senile, her perceptive husband had installed hidden video cameras in every room of their well-appointed house, documenting his own murder.

Lavender: Queen of Relaxation and Healing

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By ExoticHippieQueen ©2011

My relationship with lavender began many years ago when I was struggling with insomnia and anxiety. I began researching natural methods that I could use to treat my problems, rather than prescription medications. Eventually, I stumbled across lavender, known for its’ relaxing properties, though it has many other uses as well. It has been called the universal oil because it has so many known uses.

Officially known as lavendula, there are 39 known species, as well as many hybrids. Among the many byproducts and uses for lavender are monofloral honey, as a candied flower in cake decorations, lavender sugar, lavender tea, as a flavoring in baked goods, lavender syrup, lavender oil, and in balms, scented waters, salves, perfumes, cosmetics, bath products and topical applications.

Essential oil of lavender, which is what I love, was used in hospitals during World War I to disinfect walls and floors. Lavender essential oil is made by steam distillation using only the flowers of the lavender plant. Lavender can be used neat (undiluted) and combines well with almost all other oils for a wide variety of benefits:

• Tones and revitalizes the skin

• Helps lower blood pressure by relieving stress

• Helps to reduce bad breath

• Anti-spasmodic and anti-inflammatory effects assist with bronchitis and asthma

Anti-inflammatory effects help throat infections and whooping cough

• Stimulates hair growth and degreases hair

Helps the digestive system deal with colic, nausea, vomiting and gas

• Soothes sunburn and helps heat stroke

• Helps to soothe colds and laryngitis

Relieves pain when used for rheumatism, arthritis, lumbago and muscular aches and pains, especially sport-related

• Useful for all types of skin problems such as acne, abscesses, oily skin, boils, burns, sunburns, wounds, lice, and psoriasis

• Acts as an insect repellent and soothes the stings from insects

Dried lavender seeds in pillows and sachets aid sleep and relaxation. Even the color of lavender induces relaxation. When used at the temples, lavender can alleviate headaches. It also makes beautiful, fragrant, dried flower arrangements.

Lavender originated in the Mediterranean and was referred to as “nard” when mentioned in the Bible, in the Book of Solomon 4:14:

“nard and saffron,
calamus and cinnamon,
with every kind of incense tree,
with myrrh and aloes,
and all the finest spices.”

When I was at my most anxiety-ridden, I carried a bottle of essential oil of lavender with me all the time, reminiscent of the ladies of the 19th century, carrying on with their “scented hanky’s” as they lounged on the fainting couch. Whenever I was feeling particularly stressed, I reached for my bottle and dabbed some oil at my wrists and behind my ears, then marched out into the stress-filled world confident and relaxed. Recently, I began using it again at bedtime because it is still a stress-filled world! The results are still the same. The second that the fragrance hits my nose, I relax immediately, as my brain recognizes a kind and familiar friend.  R E L A X ……..ahhhhhhhhhhhhh.

*A cautionary note, lavender should not be ingested during pregnancy or breastfeeding as it is cytotoxic in vitro (in the womb)

Me/You: Impossible

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By ExoticHippieQueen © 2012

Me/Heart
You/Head

Me/Think
You/Said

Me/Truth
You/Lie

Me/Stay
You/Fly

Me/Joy
You/Grief

Me/Buy
You/Thief

Me/Text
You/Call

Me/Short
You/Tall

Me/Neat
You/Mess

Me/Calm
You/Stress

Me/Sweet
You/Sour

Me/Weak
You/Power

Me/Walk
You/Ride

Me/Show
You/Hide

Me/Real
You/Fake

Me/Fix
You/Break

Me/Talk
You/Fight

Me/Wrong (no)
You/Right

Me/Wed
You/Date

Me/Here
You/Late

Me/Fish
You/Steak

Me/Give
You/Take

Me/Save
You/Spend

Me/Straight
You/Bend

Me/Cry
You/Grin

Me/Lose
You/Win

Me/Spoon
You/Snore

Me/Done
You/Door.

 

A Pure Peace ~ Haiku

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By ExoticHippieQueen     ©2012

The definition of a haiku is a Japanese verse poem of unrhymed lines which are written in a structure of 5 syllables for the first line, 7 syllables for the second line, then 5 syllables for the third line. Most haiku’s are about nature.

In profound silence
mute astral womb reveals life,
white evolutions.

Slow tumble, float free
through velvety deep of space,
night revolutions.

Pure peace is present,
drifts to earth and heals the war,
fight resolution.

Splendor In The WheatGrass: Powerful Cancer Warrior

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The Mean Green Health Machine

By ExoticHippieQueen ©2011

I can’t believe that I caught your attention long enough to read about something as repugnant sounding as Wheatgrass! Yuck! What the heck is it, anyway? Why would you even want to know anything about it? Well, while you’re already here, I’m going to tell you, and I think that really…….you might want to listen.

You know how people tell you stories about how this person or that person tried the Cabbage Soup Diet and lost 25 pounds the first week, or how about how a friend tried some crazy thing to help them stop smoking after 35 years of sucking up Camel straights, and they never puffed another puff again? These stories are often unreliable and just plain Urban Tales. What I am going to tell you about is 100% true; it did not happen to a friend of a friend. This story will explain to you what happened to my husband and years later, to me, and involved the splendor of magnificent, underloved Wheatgrass.

But first,

Just What is Wheatgrass?

Wheatgrass is a member of the family Poaceae, which includes a wide variety of wheat-like grasses. It is a food prepared from the cotyledons of the common wheat plant and is most commonly found in the temperate regions of Europe and the United States. Sold as a juice, in tablet form, as fresh produce or powdered concentrate, it can also be grown from seed or berries indoors or out right in your own home. The roots and underground stems may be used in a variety of herbal remedies. The primo of the wheatgrass world is Kamut Wheatgrass, an heirloom, non-hybrid ancient strain from the Nile region of Egypt that has never been crossbred. This is what I use.

A Little Bit of History! (it’s interesting, honest):

Using wheatgrass all got started back in the 1930’z when this dude, Charles F. Schnabel, an agricultural chemist, did some experiments with fresh cut grass in an attempt to nurse dying hens back to health. The hens recovered AND produced eggs at a higher rate than healthy hens. He was so pumped about this discovery that he dried and powdered grass for his family and neighbors to supplement their diets. (Who knew?) The next year, Schnabel repeated the experiment on a new crop of unsuspecting hens with the same results. Those crazy wheatgrass chomping hens doubled their egg production. Schnabel claimed that “fifteen pounds of wheatgrass is equal in overall nutritional value to 350 pounds of ordinary garden vegetables,” though that claim has been disputed. He began promoting his discovery and two large corporations, Quaker Oats and American Dairies, Inc. invested major millions into research and development of grass products for animals and for humans willing to stand still long enough to listen. Are you impressed yet? Obviously, this stuff did some kind of major magic on the hens. So, you’re thinking what about humans, right? I’m getting to that, just relax.

What Does It Taste Like?

If you think I’m going to lie to you and tell you that it tastes like a 3 Musketeers bar, forget it. But, I will tell you that years ago, I was shopping at a flea market in Big Pine Key, Florida. Someone had a tray of fresh wheatgrass, and I had the opportunity to taste it. I pulled off a small handful, including the roots and took a bite. I was shocked. A burst of sugar flooded my mouth. It was delicious! I couldn’t believe it! These days I use the powdered concentrate. I mix it with V-8 juice or tomato juice. Any juice will do really. It is palatable that way. Just mixed in water? Not so much, though my ex-husband drinks it that way and finds the flavor very pleasant. (gag) Go figure.

So, What Then Is So Darn Good About It?

This is the good part! Everything! The American Cancer Society has actually given it some attention in online articles. That is no small feat. While there have been almost no clinical studies in humans to support claims made for the benefits of wheatgrass, one small study did suggest that it may benefit people with colitis, a bowel inflammation. These are the conditions that wheatgrass allegedly has the ability to improve or heal:

Common cold

Bronchitis

Fevers

Infections

Cystitis

Gout

Rheumatism

Skin disorders

Constipation

Cancer

Ulcerative colitis

Viruses

Wheatgrass has also been known to improve blood flow to the organs, aid digestion, assist in detoxification of the body, strengthen the immune system, help the body recover from sickness and disease, as well as strengthen artery and vein walls. Many small scale studies have been done over time. In one pilot study, breast cancer patients who drank wheatgrass juice daily showed a decreased need for blood and bone marrow building medications during chemotherapy, without lessening the effects of the therapy.

Now for MY Stories……….

Back in 2003, not that long ago, my husband (now my ex) began to suffer from a severely varicosed vein in his leg. It was swollen, very large, and ran all the way up to his groin. His job required him to be on his feet all day, and his leg would ache at the end of the day. Eventually, it progressed to the point that the vein was leaking, and he had to wear a support hose that caused him endless misery, falling down constantly and very uncomfortably hot to wear. He had learned about wheatgrass from a book we had whose name I can no longer recall, and decided to try it. After a few weeks on wheatgrass, there was noticeable difference not only in the size of the vein, but in how it felt, less achy.

While the vein never shrank to its’ original size, it did eventually shrink to the point that it stopped leaking, looked less than half its’ original size, and my husband was able to stop wearing support hose completely. Since those days, he continues to use wheatgrass and says that without it, his energy levels fall dramatically.

And then…………………

For those of you that know me, you may have read my story, Heat Watch, in which I reveal that I contracted a serious virus last year and was very, very sick. I do not mention wheatgrass in the story, only juicing of organic vegetables, but wheatgrass did play a big part in my recovery. My liver was severely compromised, and the wheatgrass gave it a huge rest, doing much of the detoxing of my body, so that my liver could rest while under siege. I do not know how well I would have recovered without it, or how much liver damage I would have suffered if I had not been using it regularly. My liver specialist called my dramatic and sudden recovery “miraculous” to quote him. My miraculous recovery occurred only after I began using wheatgrass out of desperation. Prior to using wheatgrass, my liver enzymes continued to climb to dangerously high levels, causing my doctor to start throwing out crazy words like “liver failure” and “liver transplant”. ‘Nuff said?

Finally,

If you’re thinking to yourself, um, this is not for me. Let me tell you just how fast you will guzzle the green gunk down if you should suddenly run up against an unexpected severe illness or disease (and aren’t they all unexpected)? Even if you are perfectly healthy, you can benefit from Splendor in the Wheatgrass. It’s always a good idea to live defensively to keep your body up and running. Remember to start slowly when first using wheatgrass in any of its’ forms in order to avoid any unpleasant initial side effects. I don’t know what it is about the magic of wheatgrass, I just know that it works. Check it out…..

A Dedication: Somewhere in Deep July

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Favorite poem written by my now deceased birth mother…………..

Dedicated by

ExoticHippieQueen © 2012

My birth mother, Lorraine Good, wrote a book of poetry called Deep Emerald, published in the 50’s. She wrote for several periodicals and was active in the writing community. When I was growing up, my adoptive parents often had the radio on in their bedroom late at night, usually WGN, and I would hear it as I passed by on my way to the bathroom. Many nights, I heard the voice of Franklin McCormick, whose deep velvet voice was so distinctive, spin the magic of poetry for the patrons of the night. Years later, when I met my mother and learned about her history, I discovered that McCormick read her poems a number of times on the air. Who knows which night I passed by my parents room and heard my mother’s words floating through the air to me?

 

At half past two, somewhere in deep July,

The summer afternoon whispers along

Where useless breeze, unnoticed, tiptoes by trees,

Beauty napping in a fringed sarong.

 

 

A red ball sun rolls idly down the street

Where people carry footsteps out of reach….

Only a fly plane drones the clear, white heat

That hangs like silence following dead speech.

 

 

Frostbitten glasses pour psychology

Into the fevered soul of stifling day,

While skin-clad babies whine monotony

Night drips a cooling blue, eons away

 

 

From blistered roofs and pyrogenic sky…

At half past two, somewhere in deep July.

 

 

 

 

~Lorraine Good (from Deep Emerald)