Friday Fun Link: Masonic Surrealism


Reproduced in its entirety, the 1930 DeMoulin Bros. & Co. catalog of "Burlesque and Side Degree Specialties, Paraphernalia and Costumes" for Masons and other fraternal orders. Especially recommended: the Fuzzy Wonder Goat, which looks like it was designed by Max Ernst. After you ride it, you and your lodge brothers can relax and drink the goat's blood.

[Via bOING bOING.]

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  1. My favorites are the “moral athletics,” although the widespread presence of furniture wired to deliver electric shocks is pretty funny.
    As opposed to modern hazing rituals, where an initiate drinks Malibu and cough syrup until they pass out, then wake up in an unknown room littered with the bodies of several dead hookers.

  2. Does anyone else find the disturbing juxtaposition of cheery, “old-time” marketing catalogue-speak and banal local boosterist “gentlemen’s societies” with goat-blood-drinking and goat “riding” [wink wink] gives them an overwhelming desire to go read some French postmodernist philosophy?

    Quick, call the CDC. These links are obviously disease vectors.

  3. Jesus christ this is so fucked up. Do men actually do these kind of shit? I’ve been hazed in the scouts and in college, but nothing comes this close.

    Fuck, I thought women were the crazy ones..

  4. I have a theory. We men have very basic primal programming to gather with other men and form hunting and/or war parties. In these groups there is a natural inclination to bitch slap each other to establish and maintain the hierarchy.

    Stuff like this (i.e. “hazing”) is an absurb manifestation of this programming.

    That is why I think most elements of collectivism is totally fucked up.

  5. Kneel before Fuzzy Wonder Goat…

  6. I welcome our new fuzzy wonder overlords.

  7. It’s my 21st birthday today… perhaps I will find myself a fuzzy wonder goat to ride.

  8. Do they have goat leggings? We’ve go this thing in L.A. with the Virgin Connie Swail.

  9. Fuzzy Wonder Goat. Good name for a band, methinks!

  10. RC:

    Girls are more fun.

    Happy B-day, but watch that booze tonight, seriously. That shit is evil.

  11. Damn, that’s funny. Kinda reminds me of the ads for x-ray glasses and the like when I was a kid. My favorite part, those generic testimonials.

  12. “We though we had about reached the limit when it came to inventing goats…”


  13. Entirely appropriate:

    Number One leads the blinfolded Homer to the next test.

    Number One: This ritual is called…Crossing the Desert.
    [Homer gets paddled on the butt by Hibbert, Skinner,
    Brockman, Krusty, Moe, Quimby, and Willy in succession]

    Number One: And this, we call the Unblinking Eye.
    [he gets paddled by the same people in reverse order]

  14. Randolph–

    You’re only 21?!?

  15. Indeed. I’m… old for my age (it helped having a sister 5 years older than me who let me hang out with her). Anyways, if anyone feels like celebrating, i’ll be in NYC pretty much all night. just e-mail me and I’ll tell you what’s up.

  16. Anyways, if anyone feels like celebrating, i’ll be in NYC pretty much all night.


    No, no, no – you’re in the wrong city. You’re supposed to be hanging out in Chicago with all the midwest reasonoids this weekend. Anyway, happy birthday, kid. (I can’t believe you’re only turning 21! I think it was just the other day when you were caught trolling that I assumed you were a befuddled, middle-aged dude trying to get some kicks).

  17. Smacky,
    I am befuddled, but that has nothing to do with my age.

  18. smacky,
    what time are you leaving today?

  19. linguist,

    I’ll shoot you an email.

  20. There’s an element of Lovecraftian horror in the “Yellow Kid” (after the old comic strip) costume being described as having a “naturalistic” face, especially in the context of a “secret society”.

  21. This is so effed up I can’t believe it.

    Randolph C: Happy birthday, and be careful with the drinking.

  22. Wow. I’m really glad most of this stuff isn’t in use any more.

    Happy Birthday Randolph! Count me as another poster who is shocked at how young you are. Age is a really funny thing over the internet, I guess.

  23. Guess many of you weren’t in fraternities/sororities that used masonic-based rituals for initiations. Lots of mumbo jumbo but mercifually not the B.S. listed here. Still, same costumes and words from different rituals that date hundreds of years. It’s all very clubby and we’ll have to kill you now for having seen the secrets. 🙂

    And now picture George Washington (a Mason) as he went through some of these shenenagians…

  24. I always wondered where the Shriners got that stuff…

  25. Doesn’t anyone think it’s cool that you could buy a real skeleton (deodorized)?

  26. I had a chance to look through the catalog more thoroughly, and I repeat:

    This is so effed up I can’t believe it.

    It’s paraphenalia for highly organized dickery.

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