Graveshow: About the name

There used to be an entire website here, filled with all sorts of flotsam and jetsam that I have accumulated in the :::number censored::: years I have been a denizen of the interwebs. And someday that site WILL return, I’m sure, but the truth is, it was getting a bit long in the tooth, and needed to be carted off to that old age home that all websites go to after a time.

However, if you never SAW that site, the whole “Graveshow” part of Graveshow.com may be lost on you.

You may be thinking, “Graveshow? Sounds like a horror movie / goth kid / bad circus act….what have I stumbled into?”. And despite the fact that I love the feeling you get when you stumble into an old musty shop, filled with leather bound books and jars of substances you’ve never heard of, that’s not the vibe I’m going for. Well, then again…maybe it is…

In any case, the name has meaning, sort of, and once you know, you’ll see that nothing nefarious is going on here, Officer.

Ages and ages ago, when I first got on the internet, I used the online nickname “Longshot”. The name came from a comic book drawn by one of my fave comic book artists, Art Adams. I loved the book, loved the art, and felt it fit my personality to a “T”.

The problem was, everyone online assumed it to be something obscene or violent.

Seriously.

Eventually, as AOL became more and more popular, and the old ways of getting online started to die down (anyone in the Philly area remember VoiceNet? I’m talking old school Voicenet here….back in the days of bulletin boards and IRC chat? Wow…we even used to have occasional get-togethers so we could meet face to face….ahhh the good old days….), people began to move to these new forms of “community” ISP’s. I was a devoted Mac head in those days, and AOL support for Mac users was tenuous at best, then Apple launched their own version of AOL called eWorld.

I continued using the name “Longshot” on eWorld, and continued having to explain, “No…its a comic book character, I neither enjoy rilfes nor find your innuendo humorous”. Right up until eWorld folded, and all of us were forced to go elsewhere. Unfortunately, the Devil had won, and many of us were forced to go to AOL.

Well, AOL already HAD someone called “Longshot” and told me so when I tried to join. And of course, every other name I could think of was also taken…and there was no way I was using one of their auto generated names. “ChuckM215874” just had no originality. No style. No way.

So I kept trying names and kept trying names. Nothing worked. Finally, in frustration, I glanced down at the newspaper laying next to me, that was folded to an article about the then recent death of the actor Brandon Lee on the set of the movie “The Crow“. The headline read, “From the grave, the show must go on”.

Now…being a comic book freak AND a Bruce Lee freak from early childhood, Brandon’s death hit me hard. So this same newspaper article had been sitting on my drawing desk for over a week.

So I typed into AOL: “GraveShow” thinking, “HA! Lets see if somebody already has THAT name!”

And it worked.

And that became my screen name. It was what many of my online friends called me. It was what I became known by. So when the time came to create a REAL website, and not just one of those crappy AOL Hometown hosted pages, Graveshow.com was the natural way to go. The name had become more than just a tribute to the death of an actor I admired, it had become more than me thumbing my nose at the takeover of the internet by companies like AOL, it had become…

ME.

So there you have it. The reason behind the name.

No need to feel uneasy anymore, step on in the store. Peruse the dusty leather bound volumes of books you’ve never heard of, and peer into the jars of items you’re a bit scared to ask what they contain. There is nothing nefarious going on around here, Officer.

(speaking of old school references, the whole “dark mysterious shop” allusion is from my own experiences as a 19 year old walking into the Magickal Childe on 19th street in NYC for the first time. A group of college friends and I ventured there, after I had read of the place in some obscure article somewhere. To my mind, this little outlet store for witches and warlocks seemed like something that, at the time, I had to see for myself. Walking in, the bell jingling over the door, the dim lighting revealing little before me, and the smell of exotic incense burning in the air lured me in like something out of a fantasy novel…and scared the crap out of me. So I never went back.)

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