Over the weekend I paid a visit to the ultimate parlor of brotherhood, the George Washington Masonic Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia. The building is quite majestic from the outside, but the interior is like a glorified Elk’s Lodge filled with pseudo-mystical, quasi-biblical baubles.
I still took tons of pictures, once I was certain it was kosher. Hell, they allowed a film shoot for National Treasure II: Book of Secrets. (Wasn’t that the subhead for Blair Witch II? I bet this flick is every bit as good).
For those of you who prefer to hold tight to your Dan Brown fantasies about shadowy conspiracies and metaphorical Christ-blood, consider this your #secretsocietyspoileralert.
Pics and deliciously clever captions below the fold.
This is the side view of the building. It’s more magnificent from the front, but that’s not where we parked, OK?
Wife on steps.
This is the main ritual chamber. Exactly.
Jerry Lewis. Moments after this photo was taken, he exclaimed, “Get away from me, you fag!”
Freemasons sure do love their inverted pentagrams. I think this is Satan’s pillowcase.
Talk about mixed messages.
More cultish-looking literature.
In addition to secretly ruling the world, they also play with Barbies.
Groovy mural and Corinthian columns. I just like to say “Corinthian.”
By George, what is this powdered wiggery?
Where is it written that the Founding Fathers must always be depicted with amazing leg muscles?
They just don’t write obits like this anymore.
I’m turning this one in to the FBI.
These signify something, I’m certain.
Masonic conspiracy theories go way back.
I found the Ark of the Covenant!
In Biblical times, there were no over-the-counter remedies for “burning bush.”
A pirate thong?
Chooseth Ye Path, Light or Dark. Or color in the animals with crayons!
The Breakfast Nook to Nowhere.
Nebuchadnezzar bein’ a dick, as usual.
This stained glass ain’t shit compared to the National Cathedral.
Gareth, our Masonic Overlord.
You thought I was making that up, didn’t you?
These are some more dolls.
And this is where you flambé them to appease your Dark God(s).
Pseudo-Egyptian nonsense. Kind of like Thelema, but with even tackier decor.
Congratulations — you’ve won the Poster Child Award!
More miniature stuff. This is a giant model parade that goes ’round and ’round. About as thrilling as it sounds.
Shriner cars get excellent gas mileage, actually.
The Saddest Thing in the World.
Why does something so Scottish Rite feel so wrong?
The Seal of the Great Architect, from On High.
So what did I learn about Freemasonry? Basically that any group with this apalling an aesthetic cannot possibly control the world.
But I intend no disrespect with these photos and captions; my great-grandfather was a 33rd Degree Mason. Plus I don’t want to be taken away in the middle of the night…