Secondhand Nightmares: 10 Horrifying Thrift Store Finds

Elmo the Childsbane

Hey guys, it's a baby party! Yell in excitement!

Yell! Yell because the monster is here! The monster watches you! The monster does not blink, so you yell!

Yell because mommy isn't helping you! Yell because nobody is helping! Yell because the nice man periodically steps forward to move the monster just a little bit closer to your face! Yell because you are so very small, and the world is so very big, and sometimes ... sometimes there are monsters.

Burn Your Dogs

Aw, this is just a statue of a friendly, mopey-faced dog. What's wrong with that? Maybe he can guard your keys, and you'll give him a ridiculously cute name, like Dr. Faceflaps, and every time you look at him you'll be reminded of all the great dogs you've owned, and their unceasing, unquestioning love. Well, there is one question they'd like answered:

"Why do you want to burn me?"

See that? Candle-wick.

Finally, a candle for people that want to watch cute puppies slowly melt into puddles of goo, but aren't legally allowed to buy any more hydrochloric acid without getting their names onto some bullshit government watch list.

The Angel of Industry

God is a mechanic, and the universe is his machine. We are all but parts in this machine -- not cogs, no, not something as vital as that. If we are lucky, we are paint flecks on a screw holding in the bracket that helps support one end of a cog. And God, like all mechanics, worries only about maintaining his machine. He does not care for the well-being of flecks of paint, nor screws, nor even cogs. When a small, trivial part breaks, he does not mend, tailor, carefully groom and re-forge it. He simply replaces it. He replaces it so the machine might continue to run, with new parts, with new paint and he discards the old and the broken with nary a thought. The machine runs on. Tended by a God who does not care. Not out of cruelty, or spite, but simply because it is not his job. That is God. And these are his angels.

Bonus Horror!

Christmas is that joyous time every year when we celebrate that we are still useful and have not yet been discarded. Glory to The Machine! The Machine grinds on!

Dead Baby Dolls

For the almost crazy low price of $39.99, you too can own a full-scale replica of a toddler's corpse! For ... for all kinds of totally legitimate reasons! And not one of them being "practice"! Ha ha, not if the cops ask, anyway!

If you can't fully appreciate the scale of this depravity, know that it is truly a fault of scale: This thing was three-feet-tall, looked like it weighed 30 pounds and was genuinely meant to somehow replace a baby. Whether that's because yours has died, and you're so empty inside that you no longer care if the thing that takes its place even remotely resembles something living, or because your hatred of children is only matched by your fear of jail time, and you just need some way to take out that fury without bringing your brass knuckles to the playground again. Or maybe it's just because you have recently stolen a child and only need something to occupy their space in bed until morning, when you'll be too far gone to stop -- well then, this is the doll for you! But wait, there's more! Take another look at that picture up there. See the feet? They're dirty. Just the fucking feet. As though it was recently walking. Horror is in the details, and you simply cannot get more terror for your dollar than those tiny, dirty feet.

But don't act now! Because what's this directly across the aisle?

It's the same doll, sans skin! Yay, I forgot what love is!

Bonus Horror!

I like to think that stumbling across this was the last straw that finally caused some Salvation Army worker to quit her job and go back to college.

There is Nothing

It is a child, precocious and sweet in every way. But in its eyes are nothing, and in its hands are nothing. It sees nothing; it offers you nothing. The creator has painstakingly and lovingly painted every inch of this figure, and yet the eyes are left blank. The creator has painstakingly and lovingly sculpted every detail, down to the zipper, yet in its hands rests nothing. They are outstretched, upturned, as if to reverently offer you something -- a flower they have picked, a bird's egg they have found, the last bite of cookie -- but there is nothing. There is nothing.

Bonus Horror!

There is no bonus. There is nothing.

You can buy Robert's book, Everything is Going to Kill Everybody: The Terrifyingly Real Ways the World Wants You Dead, or follow him on Twitter and Facebook but why bother? In the end, there is nothing. There is nothing. There is nothing. There is nothing.

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Robert Brockway

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