Monday, October 13, 2014

Halloween Countdown Day: Belfast Finds

A few weeks ago the family made what will probably be our last trip out to Belfast, ME for the year, as the trip is riskier with ice and snow on the ground, and there's less to do out there in the winter anyway. So naturally, I made sure to keep my eyes peeled for any Halloween (or other) goodies I might find! Let's take a look at what I found, shall we? 

First up is this handsome fellow. He's exactly the kind of old-school blow-mold plastic that I love finding Jack o' Lanterns in! He's about the size of a grapefruit, and what I think I love most about him are the funky diamond-shaped eyes with the orange button eyes in the middle.  

I decided to accessorize him with the witch's head I found in my earlier post from a few days ago. They make quite the pair, don't they? 

This book is much tinier than this picture would suggest. Full of Halloween mysteries allegedly lasting only 5 minutes. I haven't checked it out yet, and it may actually have to be put off for next year's Halloween read-pile. 

Another book that is DEFINITELY on next year's Halloween read pile is Alfred Hitchcock and The Three Investigators in: The Secret of Phantom Lake which I recently featured in my post about spooky pulp-book covers. I desperately want to know what the secret is. I am assuming some jerk in a tree costume... but you never know. 

Next up The Twisted Witch & Other Spooky Riddles which I will be sharing with my boys this season. That cover by Victoria Chess (who also illustrates the interiors) is awesome. 

The Lima Bean Monster was a cute book with a moral about eating your vegetables. We will definitely be making this a part of the regular Halloween reading rotation every year. 

This one was pretty clever too. Jeepers Creepers: A Monstrous ABC is a list of bizarrely mundane names that follow the alphabet... but the owners od said names have freakish and monstrous physical descriptions. David Parkins's artwork is beautiful, colorful, and fun. 

This thing is just pure gold. We'll be exploring this one more in-depth in the future. It's a compendium of monsters, spooks, and other Creepy Creatures

Boo! Made You Jump! by Lauren Child is a "Charlie and Lola" book, which my boys like quite a bit. It's all about dares and scares.

Moving on from the Halloween books, let's take a look at a mildly-Halloween-themed Grab-Bag!

So leaving out the wooden pig, plastic cow, and AWESOME PVC Bugs Bunny playing a guitar... We have 3/5ths of the Scooby-Doo gang! These are Mystery Inc. members Fred, Velma, and Daphne in an obviously chunky and designed-for-smaller-hands style. I already have a set of Scooby-Doo action figures, but these are cute enough that I think I'll probably keep them anyway.

A second, less-Halloween-y grab bag had some pretty cool stuff inside as well.

Here are the complete contents, including some random toys, a bobble-head from the recent Mr. Peabody and Sherman film, and a trio of Happy Meal toys from Batman: The Brave and the Bold including Gorilla Gordd, Robin, and the Dark Knight himself. But by far... the true star of the bag (and the reason I bought it at all) is this guy:

The 7Up Cool Spot! This guy originated back in 1987 and is yet another member of my ever-growing army of advertising mascots. I was sooo excited to find this guy.

I had dreams and visions of bringing home armloads of old cassette tapes from the Belfast Goodwill. Instead, I cam home with only one. But the Animal House Soundtrack is a pretty good single cassette to bring home I guess.

This "FLIKS" book featuring "Saturday Night Fever" is another foto-novel style book, but with a twist: The bottom right corner is a flip-book in and of itself where we watch John Travolta dance at the Disco!!! This thing is pure sex printed on paper.

A little less salacious is this TSR Endless Quest book: Mountain of Mirrors which is the second book in the series. Love these things. Great old favorites from my childhood to be sure.

And speaking of childhood favorites, I also picked up these two Sesame Street-themed Whitman Tell-A-Tale books. One features cave-Sherlock Hemlock and cave-Ernie inventing paper because rocks were too heavy to write on in Ernie the Cave King and Sherlock the Smart Person in The Invention of Paper, The othe book, Ernie's Telephone Call is a bizarre book about feelings that features a giant purple gorilla that sneaks into Bert and Ernie's apartment unbeknownst to the duo, as Ernie talks on the phone about... get this... a giant purple gorilla.

A Goodwill Hunting 4 Geeks post wouldn't feel complete without a Little Golden Book. This one features Mickey Mouse in his guise from Fantasia as The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

A few more Sesame Street books here, in When Grover Moved to Sesame Street, Lovable Furry Old Grover's Resting Places, Fix It Please, and The Sesame Street 1,2,3 Story-Book. Not much more to say about those except that I am an avid collector of all things old-school Sesame Street.

This book was an interesting item. It is a fictional book from 1980 illustrated with all of the different star-ships used for commercial purposes in 2200 AD. Apparently this is the fourth book in a series by Stewart Cowley. This looks like a really fun read if you're into space travel and hard science fiction.

Next is a wonderful book that I already own a copy of, but could NOT leave behind. This is the second copy of Garfield: His 9 Lives that I have picked up at Goodwill, except this one is paperback. There are enough creepy tales in this book to almost consider it an honorary Halloween book. Two different TV specials were spawned from this one book, one in the actual "Garfield's 9 Lives Special" which only shares about 5 of these nine tales with the book, and Babes and Bullets which is an adaptation of the hard-boiled detective story (top right square on this cover). Love how risky they were willing to get with this property in these 9 stories. As I mentioned, a couple of them are down right spooky.

Kermit and Cleopigtra is an Egyptian tale starring the Muppets. There is nothing that isn't 100% awesome about this concept. And the artwork is STUNNING.

A Chip n' Dale's Rescue Rangers graphic novel? Yes please. This thing has three different stories inside and stars one of the greatest Disney Afternoon properties ever created.

Finally, I found three Dungeons and Dragons-related books in the shelves at the Belfast Goodwill. First up is a collection of comic strips about a group of roleplayers called Knights if the Dinner Table: Tales From the Vault Vol. 2 I loved reading this comic strip in Dragon Magazine, and I can't wait to catch up with the gang. Next is a basic Dungeons and Dragons (non-Advanced) rulebook. I had this book as a teen. I never played the basic D&D game much as a lad, but this still brings me back down memory-lane. And then there is a copy of the AD&D Player's Option: Skills & Powers sourcebook, which is now the second Player's Option book I've managed to pick up from Goodwill! So overall, I was pretty pleased with all three of these finds!

As a matter of fact, I was pretty pleased with the entire haul! A nice pile of books, some Halloween goodies, a cassette, and a pair of grab-bags. This was a good trip to the Belfast Goodwill overall.

Well. That's all I've got for tonight kids! I'll be back with more Gruelling Goodwill Goodies soon enough! Until then, Happy Haunting!


  1. Jeepers that Goodwill was amazing! The one in Laredo is always picked over because the Mexicans plus the Americans hit it. There is hardly ever anything good there.

  2. Awesome finds Derek! The 7 Up Cool Spot caught my eye first. That little guy really brings back my childhood, but alas he has fallen into obscurity along with 7 UP itself....well at least in Louisiana.


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