Category Archives: Writing about Writing blah blah blah

Tea’s Weird Hiatus

Writing is hard. And so I must journey, good book (The AP Stylebook) in hand for a voyage up the Grammarly Mountains to consult the wise gurus there– Who, What, Why, When, and Where (and sometimes the elusive How). I have to make some decisions on what writing projects I want to marry, fuck, or kill. There is a lot to reevaluate and figure out.

As such, this column will be on hiatus for a bit. The podcast has also concluded for now (see link for season finale below.) I don’t know when I’ll write this column again– weeks, months? Like an old song says, we’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when…

Well, actually, I do know where if you feel inclined to visit me, here’s three places I’ll be appearing in person over the next month or so:

This Saturday, Sept. 10, 11am-1pm: I’ll be at the Feral House Table at the Printers Row Lit Fest in Chicago: printersrowlitfest.org

Sunday, Sept. 18, 11am-6pmAwkward Nerd Book Fair @ The Cooperage in Milwaukee: https://www.facebook.com/events/1013611836004355/ 

Saturday, Oct. 15: Milwaukee Paranormal Conference: milwaukeeparacon.com

Tea’s Weird Week, S5 ep09: Season 5 Finale

Tea and Heidi discuss weird news about planets in retrograde, a world record breaking pumpkin boat ride, again with Uri Geller, robot news, and phantom clowns. Plus trivia answers and we close out with a track by The Grovelers, “Rock Bottom.” That’s it for this season!
Listen here: teasweirdweek.podbean.com/e/tea-s-weird-week-s5-ep09-season-5-finale
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Tea’s Weird Week: The Chessboxer, Part 2

Last week I wrote about how my wheels were spinning thinking about what my second book might be (it eventually was an exploration of paranormal investigators titled Monster Hunters). One concept I had was learning to be a chessboxer. Chessboxing is a sport invented in the early 2000s that intersperses rounds of chess and boxing. You can win by knockout, checkmate, or by points from punches and captured pieces. In “The Chessboxer, Part 1,” I talked about hiring a chess coach, Aqeel.

My follow up is going to be short. I’m extremely burnt out this week, I wouldn’t even know where to begin to explain why.

In looking for a place to train as a boxer, I found a unique spot here in Milwaukee, it’s called the Ace Boxing Club. It’s not a state-of-the-art MMA facility, but more like an old garage with well worn equipment. It was mostly perfect. I wrote about the gym for an article in the Shepherd Express back in 2012. I sometimes look back at old stuff I’ve written and cringe to various degrees, but I actually love this one. It’s a solid profile on a place with a lot of heart: Ace Boxing Club and the Porter Legacy – Shepherd Express

Photo inside Ace Boxing Club from the Shepherd Express

I trained at Ace in the ring, I trained with Aqeel on the chessboard, but then something happened: I sold my second book. I now had a big project to work on and between that and trying to balance everything else in my crazy life (a struggle I still have ten years later) the lessons began to be skipped and the idea faded away. That’s too bad. I really enjoyed that period of my life. Maybe I’ll try to bring it back and The Chessboxer will live again.

We skipped the TWW podcast this week cause I was too busy. We’ll be back next week.

Follow me on: Substack//Facebook Group//Twitter//Instagram

My latest books are:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021, Vegetarian Alcoholic Press)
American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Tea’s Weird Week: The Chessboxer, Part 1

In 2012, I sold my first book, Heroes in the Night: Inside the Real Life Superhero Movement. I was riding pretty high on that one. Writing has its ups and downs. It’s a hard biz. But that moment in 2012 will always be an up.

And, of course, my immediate thoughts were: what next? Eventually my second book would be Monster Hunters, an exploration of the world of paranormal investigators. But before that was established, I had a few other ideas on Tea Krulos’ Second Book.

One idea was what would become American Madness, which ended up being my 4th book. My publisher at the time (Chicago Review Press) was not very keen on it, and in hindsight I’m really glad for that because the story was nowhere near complete at that time. So I put that project on the backburner.

Another idea I had was looking into writing a biography of the Violent Femmes. I don’t really ever want to be stuck writing about one genre or idea, so a music bio seemed like a good idea. Plus the Femmes were incubated, much like me, in this weird city called Milwaukee. Around that time I had written a short article on OG Femmes drummer Victor DeLorenzo’s current band Nineteen Thirteen. He’s a very cool guy, so I thought I might start there. But Chicago Review Press wasn’t keen on that idea, either. Editors!

I also had an idea for a book that would explore the relationship between humans and shark, working title “Man Bites Shark.” I envisioned writing about things like the shark fin soup industry, the impact Jaws had on society, the story of the guy who got bit by a shark but advocates for their conservancy, etc.

One day, and this was a real weird moment for me, I went with my sisters to the mall and was killing time wandering around Barnes & Noble looking at displays, seeing what was out there. A book caught my eye and I started flipping through it. This book was exactly like my idea, down to the chapter breakdowns and everything, it was uncanny. Demon Fish: Travels Through the Hidden World of Sharks by Juliet Eilperin is a great book, but it’s not mine!

And then there was another idea I had– CHESSBOXING.

I don’t know how I had heard of it, but chessboxing is an unusual sport that began in Berlin in 2003 and developed a following there as well as London. It spread to India, Russia, and other countries. There are American chessboxers but my impression is not a real huge following here. Anyway, as the name suggests, the sport intersperses rounds of boxing with rounds of chess. A player can win by knock out, checkmate, or point evaluation on punches landed and chess pieces captured.

Chessboxers in action.

What I imagined writing was admittedly a bit of stunt journalism– I would train to become a chessboxer with the goal of participating in at least one match and write about the experience. You know, “My Journey as a Chessboxer and Blah Blah Blah.” It appealed to me because it seemed like a great challenge to be sharp physically and mentally. I was sure there would be some kind of journey there to write about.

I had a big problem, though– I had zero experience boxing and only a rudimentary understanding of chess. I knew how the pieces moved, but had no concept of strategy, endgame, or anything else. I tried picking up a book on improving your game, but it read kind of like instructions to putting together something from IKEA. I decided instead to put a classified ad in a community newspaper I’ve written for, the Riverwest Currents, soliciting a chess coach. I got a response.

I don’t know what I expected, but Aqeel was a large, bald, black guy in a Rascal scooter, always dressed in a bright Hawaiian shirt. He told me he played “street chess” and that the first lesson was free. He taught me a move called the “Fool’s Mate” during that first lesson in which you unleash checkmate in a few short moves to your unexpecting opponent. I told him he was hired.

He lived in an apartment downtown, so twice a week for several months I took a bus there so we could hang out in his living room for a lesson. He had a constant stream of visitors who would drop by to give him food or ask to borrow $5 til Friday.

He was usually a good natured, jolly type of person. He was always commenting on my chess moves, either to psych me out or to offer a clue I was making a bad move. Some examples:

(On why I would sacrifice my knight): Well, like my mom used to say, sometimes you need to bring ass to get ass.

You make that move, you’re going to be badder than Michael Jackson (and not bad in a good way).

(After making a bold move) You wanna go there? Well then, in the words of Marvin Gaye, let’s get it on!

Other things I remember– he was an interesting person, for sure. He made an incredible homemade honey lemonade and he showed me YouTube videos of ambient sound that he said helped open his pineal gland.

Aqeel was teaching me some moves on the board, but now I needed to learn how to box.

Next Week: Ding ding ding!

Tea’s Weird Week, S5 ep08: Twisted Dreams
Tea talks to Christopher House about the upcoming Twisted Dreams Film Festival, a horror showcase here in Milwaukee. Then Tea and Heidi talk weird news about J.R.R. Tolkien, Predator vs Children of the Corn, “de-extinction” of the Tasmanian Tiger, a Jesus Christ simulator game, and QAnon’s latest cancer-curing contraption. Plus trivia and a closing track by The Unitaskers, “Philodendron.”
Listen here: Tea’s Weird Week, S5 ep08: Talkin’ Twisted Dreams (podbean.com)
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Follow me on: Substack//Facebook Group//Twitter//Instagram

My latest books are:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021, Vegetarian Alcoholic Press)
American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Tea’s Weird Week: Hello, I Must Be Going

“I’ll stay a week or two, I’ll stay the summer through, but I am telling you…I must be going.” –Groucho Marx
“I don’t want to belong to any club that would have me as a member.”— also Groucho Marx

I was late to coming around to the Internet and social media. I did not get my first email account until 2001. If you weren’t around then, that was pretty late to the game. I was traveling in 2001 to the West Coast and Australia, many of my friends had them, and I saw the value of having one for communication. Especially if I was stranded in Australia (which almost happened, but that’s another story.) I walked from Riverwest to the East Library to get 30 minutes of computer time once a week. Gadzooks, can you imagine? 30 minutes of screen time A WEEK.

I was slow to social media, too. My first social was a MySpace page for Wally Wurst, an anthropomorphic cigar chompin, appletini swilling sausage that was the mascot of an underground comic anthology I edited at the time, called Riverwurst Comics. I set that up, maybe 2003. I didn’t really want to join, but I saw the value of promoting the comic book online, so I’d post some jokes and info on where to buy the rag. I finally created my own profile, also on MySpace, round about 2006, I believe. Then I picked up a Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram over the years. I recently set up a TikTok, but haven’t used it– I just can’t even.

Why the hesitation to the socials? I saw exactly everything I would hate about it in the tea leaves– the vile gangbang of unsolicited opinions, failure to recognize different perspectives, the cancel mobs, the threats and bullying by people hiding behind a screen, the moral piety, the lies, the insanity, the schadenfreude, the lack of context, and, of course, the straight up demented stupidity.

Of course there is a good side to it, too. It has helped me keep up with friends, old and new. I can see the cool things they are up to, and that makes me happy. It has helped me network. One time I needed a fog machine for an event, I made a post, and 30 seconds later someone told me they had one I could borrow. Nice work, team! It has helped me promote my books, events, and other work…sometimes.

Let me switch gears and talk about my writing. I would say a majority of it is meant to spotlight people, places, and things that I view in a positive light. Did you Doctor Who fans know that there’s a workshop, Dalek Asylum, that builds their own Daleks (the evil cyborgs in the show, if you’re not a Whovian)? I wrote about that. There’s a great DJ, DJ Bizzon, who wrote a guide on how to be a DJ. That’s pretty cool, I did an interview with him. Recently I wrote about projects to highlight Indigenous culture in Milwaukee. I learned a lot writing that, and it was an honor. Those are three examples of hundreds of articles I’ve written over the last 15 plus years. When I post these, a few friends like or share but they unfortunately don’t get the same attention as something negative.

Sometimes I write about things that happen in the world that are pretty heavy, but they happened and should be examined. A good example of that is my book American Madness. It is about the tragic turn a man named Richard McCaslin’s life took when he became wrapped up in conspiracy theories. I think it’s the most important thing I’ve written. It was a project not for the faint of heart. I put great care into these stories. These stories will take a toll on you.

It’s a rough, often thankless business. Yesterday, I solicited my Facebook friends for info on a tragic story here in Milwaukee that I was assigned to write about. A few people I don’t really know jumped my ass in the comments, lecturing me about… I don’t know– how it was “too soon” for me in particular to report the news, even though channels 12 and 58 have already reported it. These people don’t know me, I’m pretty sure they’ve not read anything I’ve ever wrote, let alone my recent works (writers are hopefully always evolving), and have no qualifications to give me a morality lesson.

“Anyone who thinks you’d tell some kind of predatory or sensationalistic story must not know you very well. Your approach and sensitivity is why I asked you to pick it up,” my editor replied to me when I explained what happened.

My editor knows me better than these people on Facebook– the type of “friends” that never ever ever never leave a positive comment or even a thumbs up, but appear out of thin air to argue with your friends in the comments or pedantically give a “well, actually.” It’s creepy and it was just kind of the straw that broke the camel’s back, as they say, on an already stressful week.

Facebook was the main social where I shared personal stuff. I decided to stay off Facebook for an undetermined amount of time, except for Messenger, which is where I communicate with friends and people I’m working on projects with. There’s a great Tea’s Weird Week group, that’ll probably be the first place I reappear, but for now the talented team of mods will do fine running the joint. I’ll post updates on my work on Twitter and Instagram, but probably not personal shit.

What shall I do without this social media world? You know, I miss seeing my friends. I’m kinda lonely these days, so I think I’ll hit them up and see if they want to meet up for a drink, or do something in the real world. If they think I’m a fuck-up, they can tell it to my face.

I’ll be back into the thicket of social media someday, when it feels right (and following a mass purge of the “friends” list) but for now…I must be going.

Follow me on: Substack//Twitter//Instagram

My latest books are:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021, Vegetarian Alcoholic Press)
American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Tea’s Weird Week: Friday Happy Hour w/ Tea @Lion’s Tooth

Tea as in…Tea Krulos. Just a short column this week to tell you that I’ll be hanging out at my favorite store Lion’s Tooth tomorrow (Friday, April 22) from 5-7pm. Lion’s Tooth is an independent bookstore in Milwaukee and they’ve been selling quite a few copies of my last two titles, American Madness (published by Feral House, 2020, and Lion’s Tooth’s bestselling title to date) and Brady Street Pharmacy (VA Press, 2021). When they mentioned they were re-ordering copies, I suggested a simple Happy Hour hangout, so if anyone wanted a signed copy and get one.

It’s been a very long week filled with lots of writing work, so I’ll be glad just to sit at their bar and get a drink. I’ve reached into the Krulos Secret Stash for this happy hour– the first 5 people to stop in and buy a copy of American Madness will get this limited edition of a comic drawn by Richard McCaslin. This features one of his rarely seen autobiographical comics and a special introduction by me. Feral House did a run of these to tie in with book promotion. I’ve got a small stash of extra copies.

Also, the first 2 people to get a copy of Brady Street Pharmacy will get original sketches that appear in the book. I drew these on pieces of scrap paper with a ballpoint pen to pass the time while working at the Pharmacy. These two I’m giving away are of Pharmacy regulars “Filthy McNasty” (there’s a story about him in the book) and “The Pirate” (who is mentioned in brief).

So there ya go– you can support me, a really fantastic independent bookstore and independent publishers and get some rare items. You know I hate clichés, but I really will be saying TGIF tomorrow. Hope to see you there!

Follow me on: Substack//Facebook Group//Twitter//Instagram

My latest books are:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021, Vegetarian Alcoholic Press)
American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Tea’s Weird Week: The World According to Gorb

On this week’s podcast episode I caught up with my old friend “Gorb.” We used to co-host a pirate radio together, called “Gorb & K-duck in the Morning.” I had previously done a couple other shows, one was called “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride.” The station was 104.5FM, the Wireless Virus. On our show, me and Gorb played music, made jokes, and talked about random topics. We did it early Sunday mornings (not a typical time for pirate radio broadcasters) and when the show was done, I’d walk from the Sydney Hih building (a legendary counterculture complex of apartments and studios) downtown up to the Brady Street Pharmacy to work the morning shift.

The last incarnation Wireless Virus was shut down in an FCC raid on the Sydney Hih building in 2001. Pirate radio was sort of the precursor to podcasts with the added thrill that the FCC might bust your ass and confiscate your radio broadcasting equipment. I have fond memories of being on the air with Gorb at Sydney Hih and doing my other shows in the previous station location, which was located right on Center Street in the basement of a short lived venue called Canada World. I met a lot of cool people through the station. I loved creating my own media, and I still do, I’ve just switched to blogging and podcasting rather than a pirate radio show and photocopied zines.

Thanks for joining in the adventure, Gorb!

Tea’s Weird Week, S4 ep09: The World According to Gorb: I asked Gorb ten big questions, plus our Clip-O-Rama contest, weird news, trivia, and a track by Mandy Cappleman, “Spinning Wheels.”
Listen here: teasweirdweek.podbean.com/e/tea-s-weird-week-s4-ep-09-the-world-according-to-gorb
Spotify//Soundcloud//Google Podcasts//iHeartRadio//PlayerFM//Apple//Stitcher//Pocket Casts

Follow me on: Substack//Facebook Group//Twitter//Instagram

My latest books are:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021, Vegetarian Alcoholic Press)
American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Tea’s Weird Week: I Kicked 2021’s Ass (or Maybe it Kicked Mine)

The 2021 Tea’s Weird Week columnhead, designed by Addo Workman/ Cut it Out Studios

This is the last Tea’s Weird Week column of the year before I take a holiday break from it. Well, what can I say–2021, like 2020 was a pretty insane, surreal year overall. I mean, 6 days into it and there was a violent, conspiracy-fueled mob who stormed the Capitol. There were challenges for me, personally, but it was also one of the best years I’ve had as a writer.

One thing that was spectacular was that it was a year that I expanded the mediums I work in and this also involved collaborating with other people, more so than I’ve done in a long time. Writing can be a very lonely art, so it was great to work with others on a podcast, documentaries, and events.
Here’s my 2021 highlights!

January: The launch of the Tea’s Weird Week podcast. My great crew for the show includes my co-host Heidi Erickson, sound engineer Andrew (aka Android138), and our trivia master, Christen (aka Miss Information). For our first year we recorded 36 episodes as well as a couple specials and bonus tracks. We did some fun stuff like getting live interviews at Midwest Haunters Convention and UFO Daze. You can catch up on Tea’s Weird Week here: Tea’s Weird Week Podcast | (teakrulos.com)

The Tea’s Weird Week crew at Milwaukee Paranormal Conference

April: I returned as a walking tour guide for American Ghost Walks, running tours for the rest of the year. The “Ghosts of Christmas Past” tours this weekend and next wrap up the season. More tour info: American Ghost Walks | Haunted History Tours and Ghost Walks

May: I was honored to receive a gold Milwaukee Press Club Award in the “Best Short Hard Feature” category for an article I wrote for Milwaukee Magazine about citizen journalists titled “Reporting Live from the Street.”

June: I also won a National Indie Excellence Book Award in the “Current Events” category for my book American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness.

July: Also American Madness related– production begins on a documentary adaptation of the book. Eric and Kim Hayden are producers. The Haydens have been great to work with and we’ve been slowly and steadily getting interviews and other material to tell a great visual version of the book.

Me with the Haydens and members of the California Initiative at Superhero Desserts in Alameda.

September: After a virtual only event, Milwaukee Paranormal Conference returned Sept. 24-26 with events at Faklandia Brewing, Alverno College, and a variety of locations on Sunday’s Activity Day. It was great to be back and see familiar faces.

October: I wrote an article for Milwaukee Magazine on Kenosha area “horror hosts” titled “Terror on the Tube,” and that article is being adapted into a documentary short. Alicia Krupsky is director, me and Christopher House are producers, several other talented people are involved in the production, too. Production began in October. I also took a trip for about 5 days to California to help shoot interviews for the American Madness doc.

The horror host doc crew with Dr. Destruction.

December: Milwaukee Krampusnacht returned Dec. 5. Organizing that event is a lot of work and this year was especially challenging. But it looked like everyone had fun, so it was worth it.

As if that wasn’t enough, Dec. 9 was the official release of my book Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches, a collection of short stories I wrote about a drug store/ greasy spoon diner I worked at in my youth. It’s published by Vegetarian Alcoholic Press and you can order here: Tea Krulos • Brady St. Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches — Read the Future (vegetarianalcoholicpress.com)

Here’s a TWW Pharmacy episode: Tea‘s Weird Week, S3 ep 10 (Finale): A Brady Street Pharmacy Fever Dream (podbean.com)

Release party was at Lion’s Tooth, a great independent bookstore here in Milwaukee. The owners asked if I could cover a few shifts working there in October and of course I said yeah, cause they are awesome.

Me at the Lion’s Tooth release for Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches

What a year! The Tea’s Weird Week column and podcast will be back sometime next month, mid-January. Between now and then, I’m going to try to take it easy. I’ll be working on a couple articles for Milwaukee Magazine and the documentary projects, but also hoping to catch up on some reading, movies, and enjoying some holiday time. If you’re reading this, congratulations on living through another crazy year and I hope you have a lovely holiday season. See you in 2022!

My books make a good gift. here’s the best links to order each one:
Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories and Sketches (2021)
American Madness (2020)
Wisconsin Legends & Lore (2020)
Apocalypse Any Day Now (2019)
Monster Hunters (2015)
Heroes in the Night (2013)

Tea’s Weird Week: Horror Hosts

I’m still recovering from October. What a month! Definitely one of the busiest I’ve experienced. I did a bunch of tours for American Ghost Walks, did some podcasts, took a trip to California to work on the American Madness doc and…oh yeah, started a new project– a documentary short based on an article I wrote for the October Milwaukee Magazine. The doc’s working title is Kenosha Horror Hosts.

This all started back in 2016 when I met a horror host from the Kenosha area, Deadgar Winter, who has a show called Deadgar’s Dark Coffin Classics. That same year I also first encountered Dr. Destruction, a horror host with a show called Crimson Theatre, also based in Kenosha.

A horror host show features a zany character (or cast of characters) that introduces an old horror film (or independent features) and they do short skits as “bumper segments” when going to commercial breaks.

Vampira is cited as the first horror host. Actress Maila Nurmi hosted The Vampira Show in 1954. Her life story is really interesting and amazing and if you’re looking for a good book, I highly recommend Glamour Ghoul: The Passions and Pain of the Real Vampira, Maila Nurmi, written by her niece Sandra Niemi (published by Feral House, who published my book American Madness).

The original Goth Queen, Vampira.

Some other famous examples of horror hosts– Elvira, Mistress of the Dark (she was supposed to be a Vampira reboot, but her producers decided they would just rip Vampira off and not pay her), Chicago’s Svengoolie, Mystery Science Theater 3000, and Joe Bob Briggs to name a few.

I got Svengoolie’s autograph at the 2015 Chicago Ghost Con.

After I met Deadgar Winter and Dr. Destruction, I thought there might be an interesting story there and I filed it away in the back of my brain. When I saw that two of Deadgar’s co-hosts, Celeste and Morgan Parker had split off and started their own show (Hexen Arcane), I decided it was time to do the story up. Then I discovered there was a fourth show in the Kenosha area– Nightmare Cinema with Uncle Wolfman. Whaaaaaat. Four Kenosha horror host shows?

While working on the article I just had a kind of light bulb moment where I could see the story being a great documentary short– it’s a story filled with colorful characters. My Tea’s Weird Week podcast co-host Heidi Erickson introduced me to her friend, filmmaker Alicia Krupsky, who agreed to be director. Christopher House, a co-founder of the Twisted Dreams Film Fest is a producer and cinematographer. Stephen Vincent Anderson and Heather House have provided additional camera work and we’ll have more talented people helping with production.

The documentary crew at Dr. Destruction’s haunted manor, an attraction at the Jerry Smith Pumpkin Farm in Kenosha. L-R: me, Christopher House, Dr. Destruction, Alicia Krupsky, Stephen Vincent Anderson.

We did a few shoots, including the bulk of interviews we wanted last month and it’s been a blast. Winter is going to be a good time to work on editing. We’re hoping to be done in late spring or early summer and will be entering Kenosha Horror Hosts into film fests. In the meantime, you can read my Milwaukee Magazine article here (or listen to me read it on this week’s Tea’s Weird Week podcast, link below): A Look Inside the Surprisingly Large Web of Local Horror Hosts (milwaukeemag.co

My article in the October Milwaukee Magazine.

Tea’s Weird Week S3 ep07: Halloween Hangover: Happy witching season! Tea reads his article on Wisconsin horror hosts from the October issue of Milwaukee Magazine. Tea and Heidi discuss Tea’s encounter with a street preacher while leading a ghost our, QAnon thought JFK Jr. would appear to them in Dallas, Zuck’s BBQ bottle and more. Miss Information has trivia and we close out with a track by Rexxx, “Animal.” 

Listen here: Tea‘s Weird Week S3 ep07: Halloween Hangover (podbean.com)
Spotify//Soundcloud//Google Podcasts//iHeartRadio//PlayerFM//Apple//Stitcher//Pocket Casts

Follow me on: Substack//Facebook Group//Twitter//Instagram

Check out my latest books:

American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Apocalypse Any Day Now: Deep Underground with America’s Doomsday Preppers (2019, Chicago Review Press)

Wisconsin Legends & Lore (2020, History Press)

Tea’s Weird Week: Tune Your Air Guitars and set them to “Autumn”

Hello, this week I’m just listing some stuff I got going on this autumn, which I think of as the months of September, October, and November, my favorite time of year.

-Fall is, of course, a great time to take a ghost tour. I’m leading some of them for American Ghost Walks, including one tonight, Aug. 27, that is a benefit for the upcoming Milwaukee Paranormal Conference (more on that in a minute): americanghostwalks.com

-The Tea’s Weird Week podcast returns with season 3 September 10! Me, Heidi, Android138, and Miss Information return to talk about rougarous, witchcraft, and more. You can catch up on seasons 1 and 2 here: Tea’s Weird Week Podcast | (teakrulos.com)

Milwaukee Paranormal Conference is happening September 24-26. Here’s a quick breakdown: September 24 is a Paranormal Party at Faklandia Brewing, the conference proper happens 10-5 September 25 at the Alverno College Bucyrus Center and includes speakers and vendors, that evening there will be some tours and September 26 is an Activities Day with events happening at different venues around town throughout the day.

After a virtual only event last year, we’re excited to be back. Thanks to an American Ghost Walks sponsorship, the main conference event, Paranormal Party, and some of our activities are all free events this year (some of the activities like our tours and Yoga in the Cemetery event require a paid ticket, but they are very fairly priced).

Check out the schedule and more info here: Milwaukee Paranormal Conference Returns Sept. 24-26, 2021 | Milwaukee Paranormal Conference (milwaukeeparacon.com)

-And hey, my birthday is the Milwaukee Paranormal Conference (Sept. 25). If you want to show your appreciation for me still being alive, come hang out at the conference and/or buy one of my books: About the Author | (teakrulos.com)

-If you missed the announcement, I’m quite thrilled to be working with a talented production company led by Eric and Kim Hayden to develop my book American Madness into a documentary. I talk with them almost every day about the project and it’s going well. I’m going to spend the first week or so of October out in California to help set up some interviews in the San Francisco area and then Los Angeles. It’s been over a year since I’ve done any travel outside the state (I took a quick trip to Seattle in July 2020). Looking forward to the voyage and sharing developments on this project in the near future!

-In 2019 I wrote a TWW column titled “October is Mad Ghost Boo Biz” meaning that anyone associated with paranormal stuff has a pretty busy month. So when I’m back from California, there will be plenty to do– ghost tours, library appearances, podcast interviews, etc. There’s an “upcoming appearances” tab on my site here if you want to see me in person.

-I don’t usually hype articles I write before they’re published, but I got a good one that will be in the October Milwaukee Magazine about local horror hosts.

-November is a little less hectic, much of the time used to push through Milwaukee Krampusnacht (Dec. 5) details and prep for the release of my collection of short stories Brady Street Pharmacy: Stories & Sketches, official release date December 7 from Vegetarian Alcoholic Press.

It’s going to be a hell of a busy fall…but all really fantastic projects!

Check out my latest books:

American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Apocalypse Any Day Now: Deep Underground with America’s Doomsday Preppers (2019, Chicago Review Press)

Wisconsin Legends & Lore (2020, History Press)

Tea’s Weird Week: Drunk in the Back of a Cab, Listening to Coast-to-Coast AM, 2017

This story was inspired by my appearance on Coast-to-Coast AM Friday night. I started writing this when it occurred in 2017, but I ditched the story…until now.

At 2AM, I locked the door to the Riverwest Public House and was alone in the bar. I was drinking whiskey and listening to The Damned, The Light at the End of the Tunnel compilation. I had first heard this album sometime in high school and remembered it one day at work and was like hey, great fucking album, and then started listening to it every night at closing time.

Closing the bar was a time of great peace for me– washing glassware, tossing bags of garbage in a pile by the door, stocking beer and bottles of booze, slowly walking the length of the bar, giving it a rub down with a bleach water soaked rag. Last step– have a drink and count out the drawer, then call a cab. I had just moved from Riverwest to Bay View.

The bars were closed and all of Milwaukee in a drunken sleep, so the taxi arrived quickly. I was a bit buzzed myself and crawled into the back seat.

“Do you mind if I listen to this?” The cab driver asked, gesturing to his radio dial. I heard the familiar voice of George Noory, primary host of Coast-to-Coast AM, the long running, gold standard of weird radio. I could hear Noory was discussing something extra-terrestrial related with a guest

“I don’t mind at all, I’m down with Coast-to-Coast,” I told the cabbie. He smiled and we headed to I-94.

I stared out the window as we crossed the Hoan Bridge. I always loved the view. I would say it’s beautiful, in an industrial way– cold and dark, no signs of life except the grinding and clunking of machinery. Blinking red lights and miles of pipes and smokestacks belching smog passed by as the Yellow Cab cruised over the mostly abandoned bridge. We were hit with a blast of the sewage scented lake, an acrid but familiar smell.

I could have told the cabbie that I, the bartender he had picked up, was in fact a guest on Coast-to-Coast a couple years prior. But I’m not the type of person that likes to walk around telling anyone and everyone about who I am. So instead me and the cabbie sat in silence, listening to the radio while I looked lovingly out the window at the rusty landscape passed below.

I love this strange city and my life in it. Noory continued his interview with some guy who is a UFO expert– someone who chose an odd path in life, a person who opened a door to a surreal dimension and never came back.

That’s what I love about life. You never know– that person standing in front of you in line at the grocery store might dress up in a homemade superhero costume at night to patrol the streets. The person sitting next to you on the bus could be a UFO expert…or a serial killer, I suppose. This cab driver– a novice conspiracy theorist?

And the person you might pick up in your taxi late one night might be a bartender who also happens to be a dude into a hell of a lot of weird shit named Tea Krulos.

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Tea’s Weird Week, S2 ep13, Ask Us Anything!

Tea Krulos and Heidi Erickson answers questions submitted via social media– find out about frightening weird encounters we’ve had and our deepest secrets. Plus we share weird news– Mothman sighted at State Fair, the MyPillow guy goes full Captain Ahab, killer robots, and the Big Mac champ of Wisconsin (and the world). Miss Information reveals trivia answers (and our winner) and we close out with a track from Victor DeLorenzo‘s new album Spoken Drum, “Bow.” 

Thanks to our sound engineer Android138 and all of our guests this season. We’ll be back in September. 
Listen here: Tea’s Weird Week, S2 ep13: Ask Us Anything! (season finale) (podbean.com)
Spotify//Soundcloud//Google Podcasts//iHeartRadio//PlayerFM//Apple//Stitcher//Pocket Casts

Check out my latest books:

American Madness: The Story of the Phantom Patriot and How Conspiracy Theories Hijacked American Consciousness (2020, Feral House)

Apocalypse Any Day Now: Deep Underground with America’s Doomsday Preppers (2019, Chicago Review Press)

Wisconsin Legends & Lore (2020, History Press)