Original: James Jean - Fable #74

If you've watched BoJack Horseman, read recent Archie comics, or been rejected by someone who says they like you but your genitals gross them out, then you're familiar with asexuality⁠—but probably not as familiar as you think.

A 2019 poll found that 76% of those surveyed weren't able to accurately define asexuality, despite 53% of respondents asserting that they could.

And that's fine. I can barely do it after years of research, and according to modern definitions I'm a full-fledged "heteroromantic" "asexual," which, according to Dr. Google, places me among an estimated 1% of the population who are incapable of feeling sexually attracted to anyone, regardless of gender or sex. Or, as Stefani Goerlich explains in sex-therapist-speak, "Whereas heterosexuals are sexually attracted to people of the opposite sex, and homosexuals are attracted to folks of the same sex, asexuals are [sexually] attracted to nobody."

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CULTURE

Teen Victim of Slender Man Stabbing: "I Still Sleep With Scissors"

Payton Leutner has spoken out for the first time since she was stabbed as part of attacks inspired by Slender Man.

In 2014, after a night of roller-skating at the local rink, Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier took their friend Peyton Leutner to the woods.

They stabbed her 19 times, leaving her to crawl out onto a path, where a cyclist found her. All three of the girls were twelve.

Geyser and Weier had apparently been planning this for months. It was all inspired by Slender Man—the infamous tall, thin, child-eating demon who started as a concept on Creepypasta and later ingrained himself into a generation's minds through a series of Photoshopped images and gory Internet threads.

Yesterday, the now 17-year-old Leutner spoke out for the first time since the attack. She appeared on ABC's 20/20 program, which airs this Friday night, and she apparently said that she still sleeps with broken scissors "in case someone tries to murder her again."

The Verge

As for why she's decided to speak out, she said, "I feel like it's time for people to see my side rather than everyone else's."

Most of the information that exists about the Slender Man stabbing concerns Morgan and Anissa, both of whom are currently in mental institutions. But this story really began over a decade ago, in the darkest and most infected laboratory known to man: the Internet.

The first mentions of Slender Man appeared on Creepypasta's Something Awful forum. It was 2009, the era of MySpace and early Internet, and a user named Victor Surge responded to a request for spooky photos by submitting an image of a tall, thin man without a face. It was captioned, "We didn't want to go, we didn't want to kill them, but its persistent silence and outstretched arms horrified and comforted us at the same time. — 1983, photographer unknown, presumed dead."

From there, Slender Man became a viral meme, the modern equivalent of a popular folktale. Evading fact and authorship, Slender Man instead seemed to exist only in echoes and whispers. Always skeletal, thin and faceless, usually seen in the woods, he fit into the old, monstrous archetype of the children-snatcher, being the kind of specter used to discourage children from running away into the night. But unlike the cryptids and stringy-haired witches that are so common in horror movies, he has no precise precedent in folklore.

Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier

What happened to Peyton Leutner is an absurd, random tragedy, one that evades logic. It is evidence that the things the Internet dreams up can come to life. It plays into the deepest fears of every parent who has allowed their children to go out at night or go online (regardless of the fact that very few people actually are moved to violence by what they read about online). In that, it's a tale that feels particularly resonant in 2019, when it's becoming clearer that we have far less power over the Internet than we imagined, and when we know that powerful men wearing suits have been stealing children away for quite a long time.

But maybe sometimes, all this violence can become a catalyst for healing. Inspired by what happened to her, Leutner has decided to become a doctor. When asked if there's anything she would say to Morgan Geyser, Leutner said she would thank her.

Leutner said, "I would probably, initially thank her," Leutner said.

"I would say, 'Just because of what she did, I have the life I have now. I really, really like it and I have a plan," she said. "I didn't have a plan when I was 12, and now I do because of everything that I went through. Without the whole situation, I wouldn't be who I am. I've come to accept all of the scars that I have. It's just a part of me. I don't think much of them."

'Slender Man' stabbing survivor describes horrific ordeal | Nightline youtu.be


FILM & TV

BOX OFFICE BREAKDOWN | A Cannes Release Comes Stateside

AUGUST 10TH-12TH | What's Coming to Theaters This Weekend?

dazeddigital.com

Spike Lee brings us his latest in this romping crime flick.

In Popdust's column, Box Office Breakdown, we aim to inform you of the top flicks to check out every weekend depending on what you're in the mood to enjoy. Looking to laugh? What about having your pants scared off? Maybe you just need a little love? Whatever the case may be, we have you covered. Take a peek at our top picks for this week…

Slender Man

You probably remember when this was all over the news. Now you can be terrified in its fictional form with an eerie doc-like feel. Four high school girls in a small town in Massachusetts set out to debunk the myth of this terrifying creature but get more than they bargained for when one of them goes missing, seemingly becoming the latest victim.

Purchase Tickets for Slender Man

PG-13 | Running Time 1hr 33m | Sony Pictures | Director: Sylvain White

Starring: Joey King, Javier Botet, Annalise Basso, and more!

The Meg

Shark Week may be over but that does not mean there is a lack of movies to terrify you for going in the water. A massive creature attacks a submarine crew and leaves them stranded at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. It becomes a race against time as a rescue diver must keep his team safe from a massive, prehistoric shark.

Purchase Tickets for The Meg

PG-13 | Running Time 1hr 53m | Warner Bros Pictures | Director: Jon Turteltaub

Starring: Ruby Rose, Jason Statham, Jessica McNamee, and more!

A.X.L.

The namesake here is a top-secret robotic dog used by the military with the help of artificial intelligence. When a mission goes wrong, he is sadly abandoned in the desert. Thankfully a young man finds him and the two quickly becoming friends, A.X.L. giving the man self-confidence and the man giving A.X.L. a reason to fight to stay away from the scientists who created him.

Purchase Tickets for A.X.L.

PG | Running Time 1hr 40m | Global Road Entertainment | Director: Oliver Daly

Starring: Thomas Jane, Becky G, Dominic Rains, and more!

Dog Days

So if one of those ensemble movies starting adding dogs, that would be this film. A group of unconnected strangers soon start to develop relationships with one another through the actions of their dogs. It is cheesy as heck but sometimes you need something soft and cuddly and uncomplicated...kind of like man's best friend.

Purchase Tickets for Dog Days

PG | Running Time 1hr 53m | LD Entertainment | Director: Ken Marino

Starring: Nina Dobrev, Finn Wolfhard, Vanessa Hudgens, and more!

And our ⭐️ TOP PICK ⭐️ ...

BlacKkKlansman

Based on a true story, the film is set in the 1970s and tells the story of the first African American detective to serve in the Colorado Springs police department. He wants to make a mark on the scene and decides to undergo a mission to disembody the Ku Klux Klan. With a friend they start their undercover operation as the group is looking to become more mainstream.

Purchase Tickets for BlacKkKlansman

R | Running Time 2hr 8m | Blumhouse Productions | Director: Spike Lee

Starring: Adam Driver, Topher Grace, Alec Baldwin, and more!

Really like a film you've seen or know of one coming out soon that we should check out? Shoot me an email and let me know!


Rachel A.G. Gilman is a writer, a former radio producer, and probably the girl wearing the Kinks shirt. She is the creator of The Rational Creature and suggests you check it out. Also visit her website for more.


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