The Nazi in My Dad’s Basement

in The Brick House Cooperative
on January 21, 2021

In Popula this week, Nathan Munn writes about discovering the secret Nazi bunker in his dad’s basement:

He led me down the basement stairs to a wood-paneled door, punched numbers into the cipher lock above the knob. The door creaked open and he flicked on the harsh fluorescent lights.

The wood-paneled room was about twelve feet square, with a low ceiling and an ominous vibe; it was easy to imagine someone being held captive there. Against two of the walls were cabinets similar to the one upstairs, glassed-in, lined in red felt, empty now, but bearing the outlines of objects visible on the fabric: rifles, handguns, unrecognizable shapes.

There was a small closet at the back of the room; strangely, the inside was painted a bright sky-blue. My dad reached to the ceiling, pressed a hidden button and then pushed open the back wall of the closet, into an inky blackness—a secret passage.

“Oh my God,” I said.

“Yeah,” he replied, stepping carefully into the black. A few moments later a light clicked on, I followed, and found myself in an entirely different world.

The walls of the concrete walkway were too narrow to extend my arms, and painted the same weird sky-blue as the closet. The corridor extended thirty feet or so to my right, and at the end of it, in a cut-out of the wall, was a steel plate shredded and warped by gunfire.

Behind me, at the far end of the corridor, I found my dad digging through a large coffee can: it was stuffed to the brim with spent bullet casings — 9 millimeter, .45 caliber, .30-30 rifle rounds.

“This was his shooting range,” he said.

Read the rest of the story at Popula.

This week at The Brick House

Garbage Day (Jan. 20, 2021)

“STAND BACK, EVERYONE! I am doing important work.” — Jason Katzenstein in AWRY

“Mean Streets, Scorsese’s first feature, might be his most straightforward film. It might also offer the clearest thesis on his own experiences with Catholic guilt.” — Alejandra Martinez in Preachy

“Fakafìkì is a Yorùbá onomatopoeia for the sound of the steam engine … I heard the word first from my grandfather in one of my moonlight folktale times with him.” — Salawu Ọlájídé in Olongo Africa

“It is possible to make a world where everyone’s time and quality of life have value, and everyone could be as loved as my mom was and will always be.” — Maria Bustillos in Popula

“Invisibility does something on a subconscious level to all of us.” — Charles Yu in No Man Is An Island

“The Trump administration has been seen as distasteful since long before Jan. 6, but that has not stopped dozens of former Trump officials from getting hired.” — Donald Shaw in Sludge

“Not everyone forced to experience trauma is granted the privilege of surviving it.” — Myriam Gurba in Tasteful Rude

“State dad always wins.” — Jimmy Vielkind in FAQ NYC

“I’ve spent full months’ worth of my life, possibly more than a year, washing and trimming and chopping vegetables.” — Tom Scocca in Hmm Weekly

“Brick House published some good shit this week.” — Emma Roller in this newsletter


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