"Creepiosity" Book Review
Written by David Bickel
2010, 192 pages, Non-Fiction
Released on June 15th, 2010
That guy's creepy. That house looks sinister. Man, that's a really creepy doll. Chances are you've heard some variation of those sentences at some point. Why? Because creepiness is everywhere. According to David Bickel's book on the subject, Creepiosity, it is defined by The American Heritage Dictionary as something that produces "...a sensation of uneasiness of fear." However, the word is used in a plethora of situations simply because what someone finds frightening is probably someone else's hobby. For example, I once went to a really fancy toy store. They sold huge doll houses and tons of miniature stuff to put inside them (and by tons I mean everything from furniture, musical instruments, and pets to food, wall decorations, and people). All of it was ludicrously expensive. I asked a guy what kind of kids came in looking for diminutive replicas of French bread and flugelhorns. He told me that stuff was for adults. Creepiosity level: 9.59
Creepiosity is a funny little book about the things that Bickle finds disturbing, but not the ones you would expect. Instead of taking the easy route talking about the obviously and universally sinister (as the back cover reads, "serial killers, ghosts, aliens"), the book tackles the unintentionally creepy and rates on a subjective scale the author devised. A few examples are Dick Cheney's smile, hairless cats, aged-up lost kid pictures, toy train aficionados (yes, the adult ones, who probably get along very well with the freaks that play with doll houses), Bruce Jenner's face, anime, and bad dentures. Bickle writes about all these things and more with humor and, what's even better, throws political correctness out the window. Readers will surely disagree with some things and come up with lists of things they find unintentionally creepy, but that just makes the book more of a conversation piece.
Some of the highlights include:
- Bars of soap. To be honest, I thought I was the only one who thought keeping a piece of wet, pubic-hair-covered soap in a moldy corner of the bathtub sort of beat the purpose of taking a shower, so seeing this in here made my day.
- Bloody, used Band-Aids. I've seen them on the floor, floating in the toilet, stuck to clothes at the laundry, and near the drain on public fountains. In all cases, they've been equally creepy.
- Kids on leashes. It's a kid, not a dog. Teach your kid some manners and take the leash off.
- Kiddie beauty pageants. Funny? A little, until you realize the parents making their little girls act like grownups are very sick in the head.
The entries are sometimes cruel, sometimes funny, sometimes true, and always somewhat creepy. There's not much to read and you can get through the book in about half an hour. However, it's clear that reading is not what the book was made for. Instead, this a great way to start talking about those things that we find unintentionally creepy.