really amazing cemetery in Richmond, VA called Hollywood Cemetery that
looks like it's right out of a horror movie, or perhaps a slightly watered
down version of something you might find in New Orleans. There are two US
Presidents buried there, James Monroe and John Tyler, so you know that a
lot of these graves and mausoleums date back a significant number of
So getting into the Halloween spirit of things, I called up my trusty
photographer Rachael and we headed off to the cemetery to piss off and
disturb the rest of as many undead spirits as we could find! (And if there
are any undead spirits out there reading this, I dunno, maybe over
somebody's shoulder or something, this is a joke! Please don't give me a
"Large Marge" style scare and send me packing for the Underworld!).
One of the coolest things about Hollywood Cemetery is that it's absolutely
huge, and a lot of the historical tombstones are insanely large and
elaborate. There are probably as many ornate obelisks reaching into the
sky as there are normal sized tombstones, which all just goes to show you
that this ain't your daddy's cemetery. Unless your father is actually
buried there, in which case I suppose it technically is his
cemetery, and now I feel sort of awkward and obligated to offer my
One of my other favorite things about Hollywood Cemetery is the fact that
most of the graves are actually placed on fairly steep hills. Which for
some reason, lends itself to the image of zombies clawing up out of their
dirt prisons so much more readily than the mundane flat cemeteries you can
find just anywhere. BUT—I get ahead of myself! As you can see from the
following picture, we haven't even entered the cemetery yet!
You can thank your lucky stars you can't get a closer look at me "gothing
it up" in front of the Cemetery Gates (hey Smiths fans! That's your cue to
start up the song of the same name, so you have appropriate musical
accompaniment for our little graveyard adventure... OOOoooOOOOOooooh
SPoooOOky!), but with the gates being as far apart as they are, that's the
best we could do. You don't like it? Fucking crucify me, why don't ya?
Shortly after we entered, we encountered this twisted bench resting on a
rather steeply inclined hill. As if the gnarled frame of the thing itself
wasn't enough of a deterrent to sitting on it, you'd have to actually hang
onto it in order to avoid rolling off the side. I couldn't help but wonder
if this was some erstwhile carpenter zombie's feeble attempt at
craftsmanship. Fearing it may be cursed however, I refused to sit on it
(also I didn't want sharp jagged edges poking into my bum).
There's this really awesome dog statue next to this one little girl's
grave, and people leave her little gifts all the time. It's actually quite
sad, apparently she died fairly young and her pet dog died soon after, so
they had the dog statue made to stand guard over her in the afterlife as
well. But guard her from WHAT, I ask you? There is only one answer, and
you damn well know what it is: zombies.
There is a
GIGANTIC pyramid over in the Confederate soldiers' section of
the cemetery, and if you want to get an idea of how big it is, that's me
standing next to it in the little white circle at the bottom. I'm sure
some foolish kids have tried to climb the thing, because we saw a large
stick wedged in between the rocks fairly high up along its side. My guess
is the first poor sucker to pull that stick out is going to have the
entire pyramid collapsing on top of him.
Right next to the pyramid in the Confederates section is a Civil War
cannon. I can only think of ONE good reason that this thing would be here
in the cemetery, and I think you know what I'm getting at. Starts with a
"Z"? Ends in "ombies"? Yeah.
Then Rachael wanted a turn on the cannon, and though I tried to convince
her that this isn't like one of those "horsey" or "spaceship" rides you
can buy for a quarter outside the grocery store, she didn't seem to
From there it was off to the newer section of the Cemetery, where we
wanted to look at specific tombstones and see if we could find anything
I'm sorry, California, but I'm afraid your governor appears to be dead.
Which means there's been some kind of doppelganger in office for some
time! A ZOMBIE DOPPELGANGER! Or wait, if it's a zombie, I guess that'd
really be him and not a doppelganger. Unless it's really THE DOPPELGANGER
This one really wasn't all that interesting...
But this one was! To someone, anyway. Definitely not to me.
Hey, their last name would have been just as funny if they were still
alive. But then of course, they'd have to be wearing a sign around their
neck, or perhaps a nametag, for the picture you see, and then it just
wouldn't make any sense at all.
OMG ROG! THE GUY WHO TOLLS THE BELLS IN THAT PLACE WHERE THE BELL IS
TOLLED IS TOTALLY TOLLING IT FOR THEE, DUDE!
I was a bit confused here. Are they brothers or is their last name
Brothers, which is kind of a weird last name, but then again one of them
was obviously female so she'd be a sister so maybe it should say Siblings?
I don't know quite what to make of this one. I mean, was somebody trying
to be funny about their dead loved one, or were they actually calling the
rest of the family a bunch of skeptic assholes here? Either way, it's kind
Then of course you have the ones that have bizarre pictures drawn on the
tombstone. Apparently this guy was a truck driver. But did it really
define his life so much that he wanted people 500 years from now to see
that tombstone and remember him as a truck driver?
And this guy evidently liked golf. If people these days are getting their
interests tattooed all over their tombstone, you can expect mine to have
comic book characters like Captain America and Batman engraved on it.
And take a look at the dates on this one. Apparently this person lived for
roughly THREE-HUNDRED YEARS!! See, all that shit in the Bible where people lived
for 900 years really IS true! REPENT, SINNERS!
We saw a giant boulder that just had the word
WALKER carved into its top,
and the only thing I could think of was that such a grave would truly be
fitting for Walker, Texas Ranger. Although I personally believe that Chuck
Norris's grave is actually going to have strippers dancing on it 24/7.
These graves just have that PERFECT "Halloween" look. The way they're
shaped, the way some of them sit a bit crooked. It looks way too much like
something out of the "Thriller" video. I believe this is where the zombies
will first emerge and dance their way across the land.