Sunday, January 23, 2011

A Tale of Two Houses (Or It Just Ain't Cooth)

Their children long grown, the old couple continued to live in their Victorian home in downtown Florence. The old man died first, then his wife. Paint began to peel from the wooden exterior as dust thickly coated the home's furnishings. Next door the couple's son sat, partially disabled and drifting into a world of his own.

Vandals entered the vacant edifice, spray painting the walls and breaking the light fixtures, but the son still refused to sell the property. Shrubbery grew without fear of the pruning shear, and the old Victorian lady began to look like...well, like what the Jaycees wanted to use it for...a haunted house.

The son was livid. Use his parents home for something as tawdry as a spook house? How dare they even ask? The word "shotgun" was used, and the young Jaycees quickly exited the old man's home. Both houses are now apartment buildings, their once elegant furnishings long removed, but at least the son died knowing he had preserved the home of his youth from such an ignominious fate.

Ah, but you say it was for a good cause. Let's take a quick look at the cash-strapped Smithsonian Institution. The Washington based Smithsonian has recently been seeking uses for its Arts and Industries Building erected during the nation's centennial; however, they have steadfastly refused such "undignified" endeavors as nightclubs, hotels, or similar functions.

Apparently those now in partial control of Sweetwater Mansion have no such qualms. We were recently contacted by the Committee to Save Sweetwater, asking for information. Unfortunately, at this time we have very little info that has not been widely dispersed over the years. We can enumerate some of the indignities the once elegant home has been forced to endure in the name of fund raising: Promotional posters in black and orange depicting bats flying from the attic, ghost hunts led by a stage magician, book signings by a UFO/Bigfoot paranormalist, and now a horror movie filmed at the home.

Yes, Tormented is scheduled to be released January 31st to various film festivals. We'll leave you with the trailer, apparently entitled a Public Service Announcement by the filmmakers. Public Service? We concur completely...just not for the same reasons, we're sure.