For John Scott,
with admiration, with affection, and
with gratitude for nearly forty years of friendship.
For the nearly five-hundred pages that follow, you will experience tales so mind-boggling that the publisher, the author, and the municipality in which you reside are all deeply concerned for your welfare. Therefore, we request that you read this book utilizing “the buddy system,” and that each of you assume responsibility for taking care of his or her neighbor. If your “buddy” becomes uncontrollably awed, unsettled, surprised, frightened, or entertained by the contents of this collection, please dial 911 immediately so that medical attention can be rushed to the aid of the afflicted.*
*Adapted from the intro narration to William Castle’s 1958 film Macabre, screenplay by Rob White