While busy trying not to do any work whilst at work this afternoon, I stumbled across the horrific but totally compelling case of the Villisca Axe Murders of 1912.
This great article explains pretty much all there is to it, but it’s basically the case of the murders of 8 people one summer’s night in a small but prosperous mid-west town some 100 years ago. There are plenty of chilling aspects to the events; most chilling of all perhaps the fact that despite the investigation turning up a few suspects, no one was ever convicted.
I spent ages checking out the various articles and links, splattered around the web, and I have to say – aside for it being a rather gruesome tale – I was totally absorbed by all I read. As the dismal London rain pounded the office roof, and the banal office banter ground painfully on in the background, I day-dreamed away, transported back to the Midwest USA of a century ago. I guess the murders may be pretty well known in the states, but I’d never come across it before, and I found the whole macabre case fascinating. I kept thinking what a great film it would make – kind of like an Edwardian era Manhunter.
I just realised how weird it sounds to say that reading about real life axe murders made my day, but there you go. Anyway, it happened ages ago, overseas, so it basically didn’t really happen – a bit like Jesus dying on the cross or, um, Mark Chapman shooting John Lennon. Right?
Also, I’m not sure why in American it’s written ‘ax’ but in the UK we use ‘axe’, but I’m sure it speaks volumes about the disparities in our cultures. I shall report back when I get to the bottom of it.
PS – I never got round to buying my own copy of 50 Shades of Grey. I did however try peep over some lady’s shoulder as she read it on the tube this morning, but she must have twigged I was up to something, as eyed me suspiciously and leant away. I must learn to be more subtle!