Saturday, November 15, 2003

My Sassy Girl

Jon tried to call me about My Sassy Girl, and I missed it!
he should really have called me last night.. oh well..
for some reason, I'm missing a certain person..
(it's not who you may think it is, either :P)
we did have some good times together while it lasted..
yay for cool memories, but boo for missing people! ;)
currently checking out the Homestar Runner features..
they're very funny, and I'll have to tell Eric for sure..

I just got cheers for going nuts on the Subwoofer forums..
they definitely do need people to "seed" them..
and getting the rants going would be a good thing ;)
hey, he knows it's what I do.. and it's cool forevermore..

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Mailing list promos cheer me up?! Wow!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, RACHEL.. I hope you have a really terrific one today! :) I still remember when you got mono and missed a lot of school.. plus your "NO HOPE" agenda.

I finally finished the latest birthday project last night..
also tweaked the blog slightly, as in very minor changes..
got rid of a few specific rogue references, as well..
it's definitely a good feeling to be done with that..
more thankful than ever for a certain set of circumstances ;)
at least nobody bugged me last night when I was busy..
though sometimes I admit I miss people buzzing me..
not when I'm hog-wild busy, unless you're certain people!

got good email today.. Spoz does cheer me up..
even the mailing list promo does that.. go figure ;)
yup, I shall definitely go to the forum more often..
so if he's reading this: be very afraid.. MWHAHAHAHA.. ;)
I may be someone who pays lunatic attention to detail..
but I'm your hamsterette with weird font issues ;)
(well, not "yours" in any sort of intense way..
I'm just running with the joke here, so don't kill me!)

good to know he fixed the link.. "cheers," indeed..
and "cheers to the hamster for spotting this one" :D
guess I'll see everyone around various Net haunts, haha ;)
or if you're lucky enough to know me in real life..
I might see you around in various places also, of course ;)
(is anyone I know in real life still reading this?
perhaps not, since I changed the link some time ago..
whoops.. I should tell them about it this weekend..
more promo is definitely an excellent thing! ;) )

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Friday, November 14, 2003

Staying home to ratchet up the post counts

staying home tonight since Eric's feeling sick..
hope the poor guy feels better soon, like by Sunday ;)
(I definitely need my foil around then, for one thing)
guess I'll just stay home and ratchet up the post counts..
as of today, my "safe place" postcount is way cool..
by that, I mean it's exceeded my UB postcount..
always thought that might happen, and now's the proof..
certainly a very good thing, if you ask me ;)

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New Subwoofer forums, Wolfie's Christmas card

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MELIA.. I hope you have a great one today! :) It's been very cool knowing you and serving with you.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WINNIE.. I hope you have an awesome one today! :) You've been encouraging all these years.

just checked the Spoz-meister's writings..
he says there's a new Subwoofer forum out there..
(that'll get me going, and he knows it too :P)
unfortunately, the link's busted or something..
I'll have to tell him about that sometime today, too..
heck, I have to turn on ICQ anyways..
or maybe I'll just email him because it's faster..
the reason I must run ICQ / email? this is why:

I also just checked my snail mail when I got up at 12..
(going to bed at 3:45 and up at noon.. sounds fun ;) )
found a Christmas card (already!) from New Zealand..
of course, this particular person's really busy..
it's all good, though.. this experience won't be like the last ;)
handmade card and all.. looks very nice indeed..
so if she's reading this: big cheers to Wolfie! :)
and even if she's not, I definitely do appreciate this one..
hope you don't mind getting a card back sometime ;)

and now that I think about it a while..
I know why the Subwoofer Forum link isn't working..
(as of now, my link above is correct.. his link's wrong)
I'll give Spoz my suggestions and see what happens..
if you want people to go to your site and all..
you'll definitely want the link fixed and dandy! ;)

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Thursday, November 13, 2003

Surprise buzzes from Arthur

got a surprise buzz from a special person at around 6:40..
couldn't stay long, but just thought he'd say hello..
send warm thoughts into the bargain, too.. (those help)
just thought he'd let me know someone's thinking of me :)
hoped all was well, and he'd be emailing me soon..

quite sweet of him to do that, as I'd not seen him on in a bit..
definitely good to know, and it sure cheered me up..
is it going to be another one of THOSE nights? ;)
who knows, but it's going to be all good indeed..
now, if I could just tell Corey my mind's not in the gutter..

(he says it's okay if HIS is there all the time.. uh-huh :P
what if mine is? okay, so it's not.. but it COULD be.. ;) )
contagious temperamental computer problems? fie on them!

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More projects and work

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HELEN.. I hope you have a good one today! :) It's been awesome having you as a friend.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KAREN.. I hope you have a good one today! :) It's been good knowing you all these years.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JOHN.. I hope you have a great one today! :) It's been good knowing you at church.

I'm continuing to work on my latest project..
found out several of my friends' birthdays..
had to go to the mall and buy them cards before I forget..
more money spent, and I'm sure there's more to come..
Jon's birthday dinner is coming up in a couple of weeks..
and who knows what will happen on Fridays?
ah well.. it's all good if it involves friends and stuff ;)

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Wednesday, November 12, 2003

You and your patronizing!

this is really starting to affect me in a slight way..
thank goodness it'll be over relatively quickly..
he emailed me back, presumably to answer "why sweetie?"
can't be THAT hard to read (as per Corey); I'll do so now..
I don't believe that he thinks of me with affection..
(do I think of him with affection? nope, definitely not!)
says it was "perhaps a wee bit condescending / patronizing"..
oh, he gave me his reasons.. which I can live with..
but just because I don't know much isn't a reason for that..
I'd written that I wasn't angry now, which is partly true..
his interpretation was that I'd been angry before..
so he apologized for writing that.. *I* can accept it ;)
(his only reason for apologizing is that I'd written of my anger..
no, he didn't say that.. but I get that distinct impression)

I'm not going to bomb his inbox anymore at present..
(Eric said he felt like Noah when I flooded his inbox ;) )
my initial impression of his tone was correct..
and I'm not wasting thought on that in future..
now, to happy email memories like Spoz and my friends!

Edit: he emailed me AGAIN with a reply to mine..
maybe if I stop replying, MY inbox won't be flooded ;)
a simple thanks for accepting his apology..
unworthiness / presumption / wrong.. all these things..
now, does this message really require a reply?
I could think of a few things to say, but won't..
they all may involve communication on a certain topic..
which is something I'm not ready for quite yet..
I'm unsure whether I should risk it now..
go for a surface light-hearted reply, I suppose!

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All kinds of skittish now...

damn, I'm all kinds of skittish / nervous / anxious just now..
as I said before, I had to ask something of someone..
might as well satisfy the ambient / latent curiosity ;)
(any emotional subtext to the "sweetie" in that reply?
sure, it's just a reply.. but I'd like some answers!)
good thing I have Corey around to diffuse some of it..

opened it.. "two-thirds humor and one-third annoyance"..
all right, I'm satisfied that I at least got an answer..
phew.. I don't have to deal with nervous dread anymore! :)
wait.. now I have another question... damn, dude!
guess I'll have to go through all that again.. ah well..
story of my life, that.. lots of curveballs here ;)
sure, it might not have been the most optimal reply..
(like something more friendly-sounding)
but I'm not going to fash over that now if I can help it..
I believe it's pretty much over and done with..
give me SOME credit here for not always mentioning him! ;)

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Consolidating personal data

I'm currently transferring a lot of personal data..
just consolidating it all into the newest blue notebook..
like birthdays, phone numbers, email / house addresses, etc.
plus the unforgettable utterances of people in my life..
it's a big project, but has to be done somehow..
might as well go hog-wild and hardcore on this thing..
then after this, I really should start on Christmas stuff..
I do have this reputation to keep up, y'know ;)

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Eternal update entries and the black art of templates

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JIMMY.. I hope you have a good one today! :) It was great knowing you at church years ago.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TIM.. I hope you have a terrific one today! :) It has been awesome knowing you at church.. thanks!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BRENDA.. I hope you have an awesome one today! :) It's been good getting to know you.. interesting coincidence that your birthday is the same day as Tim's.

I've just been re-reading old "eternal update" entries..
tripping down memory lane could be a good thing..
my credit for helping Spoz with the black art of templates..
various discussions with friends about stuff..
humor-laden chats, with gentle kindness thrown in..
how to beat the Xmas rush.. a tile being an abstract gift..
the support of my true understanding friends..
ah yes, this has been such a refresher for me..
last night's talks helped, as well.. cheers to all of you! ;)

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Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Funeral services and hanging with Eric H.

the funeral service was in Chinese, so I understood half of it..
Jon and I talked to Phil about life and books..
what's the significance of sprinkling dust on the casket?
it's to do with the "ashes to ashes, dust to dust" saying..
(thanks to Vernon for this information)
all this time, I thought it was a chance to say a final goodbye..
well, maybe it's that too.. I don't know a lot about it..
nice to learn something more around the rituals we do..

lunch took a really long time, so we called Nate and Eric..
Nate provided us with Eric's cell number in time..
Eric and I would have been late for the movie..
so once again, we decided to hang out instead..
(one of these times, we'll actually see a planned movie!)
we hung out here, and talked about a bunch of things..
yes, I did indeed make him sign the blue guestbook..
it's good to have friends who you can talk to..
even about weirdly important life current stuff ;)
crashed at Jon's place before, and crashed here now..
yep, I definitely do like that dynamic that went on!

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Violin at the graveside

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARK.. I hope you have a great one today! :) It was greatly interesting talking to you.

wow.. a whole day without any online conversations..
that's a pretty rare thing for me indeed these days..
but living in real life ain't so bad either at times..
so long as it doesn't totally kill your will / zest to live..
sometimes it's sucked me down that path, but not today..
definitely a very sweet thing to cherish and treasure..
who knows when that'll happen again for me, eh?

I had a great conversation with Yazmine earlier tonight..
she reminded me that I was special and close to her..
(wonders what she'd do if something happened to me..
doesn't know who she'd be very close to, then..)
told me the wisdom that a friend had imparted to her..
even if I did lose a friend, I did regain one later on..
so it's all part of the replacement process or something..
don't know if one can replace the other, but he is sweet..

I'm going to go to Linda's memorial service tomorrow..
I'd better be in full control of my emotions, too..
not sure why I feel that way, since I won't get bugged on it..
then again, I don't want Eric to see me like that later on..
I don't think tears and Scary Movie 3 go together, anyhow ;)
my brother's been tabbed to play violin at the graveside..
he'd best cancel any plans he had, till at least 3..
plus make sure the cold and the rain don't ruin it..
it'll go all right, I think.. at least, I definitely hope so!

now, to sleep.. and perchance to dream of good things?
I didn't sleep well last night for unrelated reasons..
so I'd really hope I'm tired out enough to get some rest..
sleep is serenading me with its clarion call, so I'm outta here!

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Monday, November 10, 2003

Ghost stories, part 18 and last

I live in a basement suite in Surrey BC, Canada. About seven years ago, I was walking around the side of the house towards the gate to get to the backyard. My creepy landlord, Roger, was standing at the side of the house sipping on a glass of red wine with an odd and large smile on his face. The image is stuck in my head. He greeted me kindly... we may have exchanged a few words, and then I continued on my way through the backyard gate and around the corner, which leads to the stairs down to my basement suite door. At the top of the stairs is a door that leads directly into the garage.

I walked in our door and yelled, "I'M HOME!", otherwise my mom gets startled and has a triple stroke when I come in the house unannounced. I went in my room, slipped on my big earphones from my stereo and slumped down at the head of my bed, and listened to some LOUD music. At least half an hour later, I heard an extremely high-pitched scream from my mom! This scream was loud enough that I could hear it clearly with my massive earphones blasting at nearly full volume. I ripped off my earphones and sprinted out of my room and saw that our front door was wide open and my mom was clearly screaming from up at the top of the stairs and probably from the garage...

I booked it up the outside stairs to ground level and into the garage to figure out what this screaming was all about. There in front of my face was good ol' Roger... thick wire around his neck, HANGING from a beam from the garage door opening track!!! He was turning purple in the face and had pissed himself a bit. I was F'n STUNNED. My mom was in complete hysterics, screaming like a banshee. My dad quickly entered the garage and we both lunged for the stepladder that Roger had kicked over. My mom and I held Roger up while my dad climbed the ladder and cut him down... Roger slumped down deadweight onto us. He must have just finished dying.

A few minutes later, Roger's wife opened the garage door and drove her car in. It ends up that Roger's big plan was to jump off of the ladder just as his wife pulled in so she could watch him die... but my mom F'd his plans up when she opened the garage door instead of his wife. :\ I don't assume he was very happy about this.


A few days later, I laid in my bed and passed out. I eventually opened my eyes and turned my eyes to my digital clock on my dresser at the head of my bed. The time was 8:23 AM. My body was COMPLETELY CONSUMED with a chilling feeling, and my head felt extremely heavy... My room went completely cold. I tried to move but I couldn't. I could move my eyes around, but I couldn't move my head or body!!! I looked to my right and a slow-moving blackish figure walked into my view. I opened my mouth and was trying to scream at the top of my lungs, but nothing was coming out! I clenched my eyes shut in fear. I could FEEL the figure walk around the side of my bed and could feel when he stopped beside me. It was seriously cold on my side where he was standing! For the life of me... I was too F'n scared to open my eyes!!! He stood there for a few minutes as I struggled to move.

He began to walk again... moving slowly around to the head of my bed, and there he stood again. Maybe waiting for me to open my eyes and look at him? Maybe he wanted to show me something? I have no idea. I THINK he was angered that I wasn't watching... I felt an icy grip on my ankles and I was pulled around violently around my king-sized bed! Meanwhile, my mouth is wide open and I'm trying as hard as possible to scream and only a tiny whisper was coming out. I was hanging halfway off the foot of my bed and all of a sudden, I could feel the figure walking back in the direction that he came from... I opened my eyes and turned my eyes to the right side and I could see the black haze leaving. I looked to my left at my digital clock... 8:25 AM. The INSTANT that the haze left my room, my screams came roaring out of my mouth. I was still hanging halfway off the foot of my bed with my sheet and blanket twisted around.

My parents came running into my room and I was now sitting up, pouring cold sweat, apparently 10x whiter than the normal pale skin that I got my nickname Kasper from. I was completely in a state of shock and I could barely speak.

This continued to happen to me almost every night / day over the span of a couple months. The first few times, I was scared SHITLESS... but after that, I just clenched my eyes shut and waited for "him" to stop yanking me around my bed by my arms / legs and leave my room. I always looked at the before time and the after time on my clock and they always were only a few minutes apart. My parents were insisting on me going in for counselling and so I didn't want to tell them about it anymore, or scream / yell when he would leave. One time I used enough strength to slowly squirm off the edge of my bed and try and wiggle out of my room. He left before I made my way out anyways. The less scared I became, the more I could move when he came in. Eventually when I wasn't scared anymore, he stopped coming.

I tell myself that it's just a subconscious illusion that I'm seeing in a half sleep daze... allowing me to see my clock with the current time, but also allowing me to see things that my mind is creating in my sleepish state. I don't really understand about what was causing me to be pulled around my bed. I wish my family could have afforded some sort of camera surveillance for my room at the time... Maybe I should have stopped being such a bitch and LOOKED at him directly at least once.

I can tell a few of mine. I've never really seen anything except one when I was little.

My bedroom and all the bedrooms are on the top floor of my house. My mom and dad's door is across from mine, and my brother's is at the end of the hall. My parents' bedroom door is loud, and they always closed it at night (and yet could ALWAYS tell if I was up past my bedtime!) so you could hear the loud click as the knob closed.

I was afraid of the dark so my parents left the hall light on, and my door open about 4 inches.

One night I was up reading, and heard a sound. We lived out in the middle of the woods and I was used to hearing frogs, crickets, house settling noises, and such. This was more like a step on the stairs. I figured it was nothing, but looked at the door.

I saw a shadow pass by my door. I have never been so terrified in all my life. Even writing this, my eyes are tearing up (my usual reaction to good ghost stories). It passed by and I was laying there frozen. Then it came back. And stopped right by my door. I couldn't even close my eyes, I was so afraid. Eventually, it moved back toward the stairs and I fell asleep. I woke up with bookface the next day.

No one else was awake - I would have heard their doors open, and I didn't. This shadow was up past the top of the door, blotting out all the light in the little strip I could see.

On the plus side, after my grandma died, my mom says she gets visits from her now and then. She got the most when she was finishing the quilt my grandma started for me. Mom says she was helping her keep going when it got frustrating, since she never quilted before.

My house was built in 1943, and I purchased it about 10 years ago. There is one bedroom and a converted garage that is used as a second bedroom. I used to sleep in the original bedroom. The first few nights I was there, I was having horrible nightmares, scarier than anything I had ever experienced. I thought it was just buyer's remorse and stress from the whole housebuying experience, and shrugged it off. After a while, things settled down... however, I did start to get the idea something was wrong with the room. All of my cats all desperately want to sleep in that room. Even the ones that hate each other will happily sleep in that room together. They all meow to get in and scratch at the doors. Unfortunately, they all liked to use the closet as their catbox, so they are banned from that bedroom... I figured there was just some strange energy in the room that the cats liked and called it that.

During the first year or two I lived in my house, I had a roommate. I knew she liked to tipple, but I never knew she was a blackout drunk 6 nights a week and was a good Catholic on Sundays. Aside from the usual problems of living with an alcoholic, like the oven / stove left on all night, "things" used to follow her home. Mostly, they were nuisance things that would get bored and leave again. However, one night, I am lying on my bed in my room, reading, avoiding the roomie, when I felt somebody walk into the room. It was the most awful, oppressive force I have ever felt and I could feel it willing me to look at it. At first, I though it was one drunken, angry roommate, so I kind of glanced with peripheral vision to where I thought she was standing, but there was no body there. No feet. Just this incredible urge to really "look." I had to force myself to look back at my book and ignore it and start reading again. Finally, it turned and left and I could feel the "weight" lifted from my mind. Eww... Fortunately, that is the only really bad thing I have ever experienced.

After I finally threw the roommate out, I was living alone and decided it was time. Time to rip the ugly, dark brown 1/4" 70's cheap panelling off the walls in bedroom and make my room brighter and more liveable. I did so... A few nights later, I had the worst nightmare of my life. I woke up convinced there was something bad outside my window, and I could see the shadow of it out there. I ran out of my room and into the living room, grabbing the phone, ready to call the cops about some bogeyman outside my window.

Not wanting to sound like a punk bitch crying to popo, I tried to relax and it slowly came into focus. The whole terror experience had been engineered by: THE DEAD GUY IN THE CLOSET! I don't know why I never noticed him before, but at the time, I was working in medical insurance, which made me a very non-creative person. Apparently, he was very, very angry about me removing the panelling. After that experience, I have never slept in that room again and merely used it for storage for a while.

Now, some ghosts like to scare you to give themselves some energy to keep going, so I figured if I stayed away, the ghost would calm down and then maybe he would go away. A few years later, I got a new roommate. He slept in that room. Apparently, he and the ghost are okay with each other as he's never really had any problems, just some strange dreams. But he asked me about: THE DEAD GUY IN THE CLOSET! I never told him there was a problem, a) because I always think I'm just nuts; b) maybe my roommate would never notice anyway. Some people seem to never be bothered by such things.

I used to have this neighbor who patrolled the neighborhood in a Rascal -- one of those carts for the disabled. He was in his 60s or 70s, but had multiple sclerosis, so had problems with -- well, at his age, everything. I asked him about my house and who lived in it previously. Apparently, some guy decided to kill himself in there. I assume that this is: THE DEAD GUY IN THE CLOSET!

I have a new roommate now and I made the mistake of telling her about the closet, so now she is not wont to sleep in there. We shall have to see how she gets along with: THE DEAD GUY IN THE CLOSET! He doesn't seem to be evil, more like chaotic neutral, so I don't try and shoo him or anything. But the cats sure like him.

When I first moved out from home, I lived in a townhouse in the shitty part of town. The townhouse was halfway decent and surprisingly affordable, so my two friends and I moved in with glee. The very first night, the hijinks began.

I woke up at 3:30 in the morning feeling like large insects were crawling all over me. There weren't any. I checked my blankets / bed / carpet for some kind of infestation left over from the previous renter, but found nothing. Eventually, I went back to sleep. The next morning, my roommate(let's call him "A") commented on the fact that he didn't sleep well last night. When I asked him why, "A" just said that he woke up at 3:30 feeling uneasy with a vague but powerful sense of something "wrong" in the house.

My other roommate, who shall be known as "B," reported strange happenings as well. She had a pet pit bull named Tabitha. Being a former dog owner, I'd always play with Tabitha, take her for walks, etc., so the dog and I were pretty good pals, in the non-bestiality kind of way. Tabitha would sleep in "B's" room typically. One day when I was making a joke about "the goddamn ghosts in this house," "B" told me that on more than one occasion, she had woke up in the small hours to find Tabitha staring at her closed bedroom door, growling and shaking. "B" thought this was odd, but would usually just tell her dog to sit down and go to sleep.

One night, however, Tabitha would not lie back down and go to sleep. "B" eventually got curious enough to get up and open her bedroom door, which led to the hallway that all three bedrooms shared upstairs. Tabitha left the room and slowly crept down the hallway, hackles raised, growling and shaking, until she reached my closed bedroom door. At this point, the dog looked back at "B" and whimpered, before turning back to face my door. "B" stood there a minute (as she told it), watching her dog shake more and more violently until she got scared. She grabbed her shaking, 75-pound pit bull and dragged it back down the hallway to her room, where she locked the door and hid under the blankets.

So what wackiness was going on in my room that scared the dog? Fucked if I know, but here's a related anecdote: One night around midnight, I was getting ready for bed. The only other person living in the house at this point was a new roommate, who was sound asleep at the time. So I turn out the lights and get in bed, locking my bedroom door as usual. As I'm about to fall asleep, I hear someone walking around downstairs. I don't pay it much mind. The footsteps move slowly up the stairs, which creak in the same way they always do. I think that this is a bit odd, because my roommate always hurtled himself up and down the stairs. A little bit more awake now, I decide I'll get up and prepare for war if I hear someone try to turn my doorknob... in case it's a burglar, you know?

The footsteps continue quietly down the hallway from the stairwell towards my room. They pass my roommate's door without stopping. Still beneath my blankets, I wait for the sound of someone trying to open my door, while scanning the room for a suitable bludgeon. After a minute or two of silence, I tell myself that I'm just imagining things and it's probably just my roommate being considerate and trying to walk quietly for once. I put my head back on the pillow and start to drift off to sleep again, resolving myself to not get all jumpy about stupid shit. At this point, I notice a small, dark figure lean over the foot of my bed into my field of vision. The floorboard creaks as it moves towards me and I'm out like a light - like it MADE me go to sleep.

I woke up the next day and wondered what the fuck it was all about. I asked my roommate if he was up last night and he said that he went to sleep in his room at ten and stayed there until morning. He then told me that the next time crazy shit happened, I was to wake him the fuck up.

Before we moved out of there, I ended up talking to our neighbors. During neighborly small talk, they asked how much we paid to live in the townhouse. I told them and they were amazed because it was $300 cheaper than their equally-equipped townhouse. Then they commented that the last people that rented our place had said that it was haunted and the realty office couldn't find renters to stay there, which is probably why we got such a good deal on the place. God damn right.

I'm a police officer and I pull security duty at the local ER / Hospital several nights a month... it's fun money for ten bucks an hour, so I can make an easy $240 a weekend free and clear. Most of the time, it is easy money (i.e. sit around and read a book or play a computer game on my laptop)... other times, it is hell (like wrestling some meth-head, helping get a tube down an overdose victim, or transporting someone to CT who just put their head through a windshield at 65 MPH). There seems to be no middle ground... it's either full bore balls to the wall, or dead as a crypt. The last analogy will come into play now.

My detail runs from 7 PM until 7 AM, and after midnight is when the spooky stuff starts to happen. The hospital I work at is not the most advanced facility in the area, and some of the stuff at the hospital kind of spooks me because it's so old. Down near the cafeteria and the admin offices is what I call the "Wall-O-Death" which shows all the doctors which used to work there but who have passed on. The last one died over ten years ago, but some of those guys died a loooong time ago... there's one guy in a picture, sitting at a desk, that looks like it could have been taken in the 1930's or thereabouts. That should tell you how old this hospital is. Some of our equipment looks like it was rejected by the old 1970's TV series Emergency.

On the same wall, at the other end of the hospital is what appears to be some type of call / paging box that as best as I can figure out used to indicate which doctor was in their office or available through the use of a series of lights which illuminated their names on the front panel. It looks kind of like a fuse box in your house, but instead of fuses, it has little lights and those lights have names on them of the doctors that once worked at the hospital. None of the current doctors whom I work with have their names on this device, though I recognize at least one of the names as being the pediatrician my wife used when she was a little girl.

There are old rusty wires protruding from some of the vacant sockets on this device and some of the lights without names have been broken out and have spiderwebs in them, etc. so I can tell this is another piece of interesting albeit archaic equipment that hasn't been used in a very long time. Out of curiosity one night, I jotted down some of the names on the old paging / calling / fuse box piece of equipment and compared these names to the names down the hall on the WOD. Many matched! What really bothered me is that on most nights, this call box is unlit. Other nights, it will light up randomly, to show that doctors that are long dead are apparently now "on call." It should be noted that while some of the names on the device are still alive, they no longer work at the hospital and have their own practices in the city.

The only lights that come on are the names of dead doctors.

I had heard many stories from other officers and hospital workers that the hospital is haunted by numerous ex-residents and old faculty. Various nurses have told me that they have seen old supervisors, long dead, wandering the floor late at night, entering rooms to check on patients and the room would be empty. Typical ghost stories and I don't let them bother me too much. But two things happened to me that I could call my own personal ghost experiences in that hospital. I will tell you about them in a little while on this thread.

This one is kinda bland, but most true ones are. The house that me and 2 roommates are renting has made some weird sounds. My girlfriend sometimes sleeps over and hears stuff in the morning after we all have gone to work.

I've heard stuff too, but only alone, so I wrote it off as overactive imagination, or just something outside / wind / the house settling. The 2 roommates I have are not the original ones I had when I moved in... one of the guys living there had lived there all his life even after his Dad moved out, which is how we came to begin renting it.

Well, his mom died of cancer, with I believe her last few days living back at home (the house I am currently in). Anyways, like I said I wrote it all off until my girlfriend made some comments to me and so I started trying to recollect things I have heard, I present them to you now:

Incident #1
This one happened about 10 months ago:

* One night, Jason and Tim (the roommates at the time) had gone to a mutual friend's house to go party or something, and I decided to stay home because I felt sick like I was coming down with a cold. I kept hearing what I thought was them walk around downstairs for like 30 minutes, so I yelled something like: "Better hurry or the party's gonna be over before you get there," and I was greeted by the sound of a door shutting. Well, the walking around noises don't stop... I keep hearing doors open and shut, so I honestly get a bit concerned and go downstairs to dispel ANY sort of growing anxiety I have about "someone" being downstairs. I go downstairs, and every room is empty, and all the doors are locked. I grab a candlestick holder for peace of mind, and went back upstairs to my room and as soon as I laid back down, the fucking walking around and doors opening and shutting happened again. I run downstairs in my boxers waving my candlestick holder and yelling at whoever was down there to break the silence (and hopefully regain my sanity) but nothing was down there. So ultimately, I returned to my room, and turned on my TV on full blast and concentrated on it until I was tired enough to pass out before the sounds downstairs started getting to me again.

Incident #2
About a month and a half or so ago:

* I live in Memphis and about a month ago, we had a crazy storm that knocked out most of the city's power. Our house did not have power for a week, and during that time, I stubbornly stayed at the house with a generator running (just a 5-gallon one to keep our fridge running [lots of food that would have spoiled], and to occasionally flip on the TV and watch a little of the news. But for the most part, it was just me there alone, as my 2 roommates decided to sleep over elsewhere due to the uncomfortable heat. I would always hear thuds and pops, the same sort you here when someone is walking upstairs or down the hall.

Incident #3
About 3 weeks ago:

* This is the last one I can remember off the top of my head that is recent, and happened in plain daylight. I got home from work and walked in the den. I usually get home 1st, so once again I am alone when the odd thing happens. I go get a drink in the kitchen and hear knocking on the walls. I walk back in the den and just kinda curious... stay really still and then I hear what sounds like crawling inside the walls. I start wondering if it's a raccoon, but then I hear what sounds like hammering and sawing, and knocking, and not just random knocking, but like the knocking and pounding you would hear if someone was trying to get your attention. This went on for about 5 minutes... the crawling would go up my wall, over my ceiling where it would be right over my head, and then I heard labored breathing, and I knew this couldn't be an animal. I contemplated either running out of the house or running into the attic: I chose the attic because I do NOT believe in ghosts or whatever, but wanted to prove to myself for sake of my sanity that nothing was there, so I go up in the attic and of course, there is nothing there. A minute later, my roommate pulls up and of course I hear nothing else the rest of the day.

The ONLY thing that I can attribute all this crap to since I have NEVER experienced anything like this in my prior 23 years in other houses I've lived in, is that it is something that I cannot explain. I half-jokingly was like "well, you know, it's not like anybody died in this house" to my girlfriend once when she was freaked out, and then I said "Oh wait, Tim's mom did" and made a kinda OH SHI expression like "Hmm, that's kinda an odd coincidence" but I still remain a skeptic to this day as to what it is I keep hearing.

Two Stories: the first is not paranormal, but included for creepiness. The second is paranormal, but isn't terribly scary at all.

We have mountain lions in North Georgia (where I'm originally from). Although not paranormal, they are weird because of their scream. And I do want to emphasize "scream."

The only time I've encountered one was about a year ago. The strange part is, we weren't in the mountains but in the flats of middle Alabama... I was at my cousin's house. We were sitting around one night watching TV, and the phone rang. It was a neighbor of theirs who lived about a mile and a half up the road. She said a mountain lion was in her backyard, heading in the direction of my cousin's house, and to get all our pets inside. She said it seemed to be following the spring that connected both places. Naturally we gathered the pets inside, but we figured it was a wild dog or two, or a bobcat at best.

Anyway, about half an hour later we were still watching TV and we heard the most cold, shrill, godawful howl I've ever heard. It was a mixture of a baby crying, a dog howling, and a few other things... but multiplied in volume several hundred times. Absolutely beastly. It made my heart stop beating for a second or two, not to mention goosebumps for hours afterward and our hair was standing on end.

We went outside (guns in hand) to see if we could spot it, but we could only hear it crunching around in the underbrush. We could easily tell it was big and stealthy, and we certainly did not intend to mess with it. I think I would rather take my chances with a ghost or a poltergeist than that fucking thing.

Okay, story 2:

I worked in the rides department at Six Flags Over Georgia 2001-2002. Toward the back end of the park, we had a few coasters separated from the main part of the park by Carousel Hill. Could they have named it anything more dreadful? Perhaps. But the present name does just fine.

Anyway, the park bought a giant old Carousel from Chicago's famous Riverview Park and plopped it down right on top of the hill. Allegedly, Al Capone himself rode it. Anyway, aside from the Carousel and the roof over it, there are only a lot of old pine trees surrounding it. Even on noisy days, the Carousel is a splendid retreat because you can catch a nice breeze and slip into a trance as the thing turns.

But it gets weirder. At the center of the carousel is a race with ball bearing in it -- this supports the entire ride. The pivot point is mounted right on top of -- and I am not making this up -- a small part of the mast of a tall ship (you know, sails and all). Why this was chosen to support the carousel... no clue. My guess is that since Six Flags was a pretty normal company, the mast was used by the builder to support the ride to keep expenses low and simply to be practical with available materials.

Carousel Hill gets eerie at night. Not so much as when the lights are on and guests are around as it is past closing time. No music, no life. The quiet of the park around being closed makes it dead quiet at the top of the hill. Crews have to clean up the ride before they can shut off the lights and go home. They do this quickly, believe me. No one likes being up there at night. Even security only goes up there in the evenings if they have to.

To "turn off" the ride, the operator removes a key from a switch in the center portion of the ride, which houses the rotation motor and sound equipment and a couple of electrical breakers. It is graffitied with past crew members all the way back to when it opened in the 70s. Anyway, once you remove the key, the ride can no longer be operated... well, that's the plan at least.

After the park is closed and crews have gone home, some odd things have happened. The ride has been known to turn on by itself, complete with lights, music, and rotation. Upon inspection, the key switch in the center of the carousel was still "off." There was no trace of anyone around, certainly. What's more, even if someone did turn the ride on, it only has a cycle of about 2 minutes before it automatically stops. The carousel had been turning for at least 5 minutes before an officer actually reached the ride itself once the phenomenon started.

The ride has done this more than once. Is it Al Capone? Something emanating from the ship's mast? Or just the ghosts of former employees trying to fuck with their supervisors? ANOTHER UNSOLVED MYSTERY. One thing is clear, though -- carousels at any park are inherently odd and creepy things.

I live in Spokane, Washington... a shitty town with not much to do. My cousin and a few of his friends like to go to this place outside of town called "Hangman's Valley." Hangman's Valley is where they had an old military fort back in the 1800's... supposedly the general of the fort called for the nearby chiefs and leaders of Indian tribes to come for a peace treaty. However, no such "meeting" took place. The chiefs were captured and hung, and I hear the gallows is still standing somewhere.

The place they go to is a rundown old farm house in a field. The field has a creek that runs through the middle, and each side of the field has stands of trees forming sort of a wall around it.

My cousin, his little brother, my aunt, and 2 of my cousin's friends heard about it and thought they would go see what was up at this place. They arrived and got out of the car, but my younger cousin and a friend were too scared, so they stayed in the car and watched. Everyone else headed off into the field without a flashlight or anything. They get halfway across the field somewhat close to the creek when some weird shit starts to happen. My cousin said it got really quiet, but they paid no heed. They went on a bit, but noticed the people in the car began flashing the lights on and off. They wanted to see what was up, so my aunt called their cell phone in the car. She asked why they were flashing the lights... my little cousin starts telling her they saw these bigass shadows moving in closer and closer to where my aunt and cousin were. The second my aunt hung up the phone, she heard footsteps in the creek. They all freaked out and bolted back to the car. When they got there, my cousin’s friend was all pale and freaking out... they got in the car and he pointed towards the house. He said, "Watch that big shadow over by the house." Everyone watched for a bit, but nothing happened... they were about to tell him he was full of shit when the big thing moved about 15 feet to the left. They said whatever it was, was really freaking tall. They left in a hurry... but came back later.

When they came back, my aunt decided to stay back in the car this time. So it was only my cousin and his friend in the field. This time, they only got about halfway when everything got quiet again. He said the only noise was the rushing of the water. Then something in the woods started moving and breaking branches. He described it as something big hauling ass through the woods mowing down everything in its way, not just branches being stepped on. Everything that I can think of... people, deer, bears, and pretty much every other animal avoid branches since it's just a natural reaction... whatever this was didn't and just kept breaking shit. They had enough and went back up to the car. The people in the car said they saw the big shadows moving along side the tree line: this time, there was a few of them... but they didn't warn the people because they were far off by the trees.

They have gone back numerous times since and each time something scares them back to the car. Like one time something ran out of the woods, ran in between the group of people, and disappeared into the other stand of trees. In all the times that he has gone, they have never made it past the creek. This weekend, I get to go with them and see how far we can get... the more people, the closer we can get to the house without being scared shitless (in my thoughts, that is).

About a year ago, I moved into a big old house that the previous owner had died in. For the first week, I would hear the creepiest noises coming from the kitchen at night. It sounded like moaning and someone walking around and knocking stuff over. It scared the shit out of me.

Finally, one night, I had the courage to go investigate. I snuck out into the kitchen after hearing the noises. Nothing was there. I heard the noise again. It was coming from one of the cabinets. It was a big kitchen and there were lots of cabinets. so I couldn't tell exactly where it was coming from. I heard it again and was able to locate the cabinet it was coming from. I tiptoed up to it and slowly opened the door and peered in with a flashlight. To my horror, I found a big, ugly........... icemaker. It was a stand-alone giant ice maker built into the cabinet. Makes good ice.

Through the years, a lot of weird stuff have been happening in my house... from shadows in mirrors, to the sightings of already-dead family by our neighbors. Now, for the first time ever, I'm going to narrate them to someone outside of the family: enjoy, and goodnight.

The mirrors

Common, cheap mirrors: you might have one in your bathroom, your study, maybe even next to you as you read this. But you might not have one like those in my house... why? Because ours reflect the dead...

You see, it's fairly common to wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, and when you do, most of the time you will find yourself in front of a mirror... surprise! It's you at 2:00 AM taking a leak, but when you are in my house, you won't only find that... but a wide array of shadows, sitting / smiling / who knows?

This normally happens everyday at random hours: you enter the bathroom or one of the dormitories and there they are... moving / hiding. You can look at them for one second and see a man sitting on the bed... the next one, a cat sleeping on a pillow... everything inside the mirror, looking at you, dumbfounded, as you make your way out of the room.

What are they? My parents say they are the spirits of the ones who have died in the house watching over us; others think they are the spirits that have been carried with the house. The only thing I know is that they exist, and maybe, just maybe, you will find them the next time you look at a mirror....

The Dormitories

Ahhh, it's nice to relax in your bed, right? Well, some things also happen here and I'm going to tell you about them.

"The old blanket"

In the first room, you can find the "old blanket"... what's so special about it? Well, it was made by my grandmother... just some time before she lost her arm due to sickness... isn't that fun?

We received it last year at a family reunion: it's a beautiful blanket, a gift from one of my uncles. We took it back home, and since that day, it covers the bed on which my dad sleeps. But now again, "What's so important about it?" you might ask yourself. Well, the weird thing is that only my father can sleep in that bed... family, friends, and even I cannot find rest when we have to sleep there. But if you remove the blanket, everyone can sleep like a baby.

My dad says he finds it extremely comfy, so why can't everyone else sleep? I say it's the spirit of my granddad who, I forgot to tell, died a couple of years ago...

So if you ever feel someone trying to tuck you in bed when you are all alone, remember the ones who loved you in life and death.

"Cold and warm"

The other two rooms have some of the weirdest elements I've seen: one is always cold as a winter night, and the other one is always hot as the sun that gives us its light. Why this is no one can tell... I remember trying to warm the "cold" room once with a heater, nothing. I also remember leaving the windows and the door of the "warm" room open once, in the middle of an storm, mind you... and still when I entered, the room was warm and wet.

Why does this happen? It's still unknown, specially knowing that the rooms
are next to each other... why does one refuse to warm up, and the other refuse to cool down?

The family

You see, my family is not exactly "normal"... sometimes, we feel when it's going to rain or when something bad is going to happen. Maybe it's some weird instinct, or maybe the help of those who watch over us, even when they are dead...

"But... I saw her yesterday!"

Every three years, it's the same story: But I saw her yesterday! She said hello to me!

You see, my town was founded by a beer company building homes for the workers. This was a town full of young men and their families, but, oh... who would have known? Working for a beer company, the workers soon became alcoholics because of all the beer they drank at work... thus ending in hundreds of deaths, leaving families alone with no support at all. During these hard times, the families survived supporting each other... when the children became men, they went in search of work. My family was one of those, and my grandma (maternal) managed to give her family a good life and became a good friend with a lot of people for her kindness.

Fast forwards to these days: those families who knew her so well are still in contact with us, and every tree years we hear the same story. But... I saw her... in her white dress she always wears.... And we always answer: yeah, we know... those who know her still see her, walking, happy as always... even after she has been dead for 6 years....

"It smells... like an orange"

We have been keeping pets since the old days: dogs, cats, birds, you name it. And sometimes, these animals leave a bit of themselves behind as they go to that great garden up above. (Heaven, you tard)

Before I was even born, my mon used to keep a black cat, with the simple name of "Black." He was a loyal pal for my mom... mind you, this cat liked one thing above everything else: Running on the roof playing with an orange. My mom would always throw an orange, and Black would climb and play with it for hours. Of course, when he came back, he smelled like an orange and this was how my mom knew he was around.

Some years later, Black got really sick... some ass had kicked him so hard. After some days of taking care of him, my mom lost all hope and walked to the kitchen to tell my grandma about Black. When she was about to tell her, she noticed a strong smell of oranges and ran back to where the cat was lying. My mother says that when she arrived, the cat was there, motionless. She moved next to him, and the aroma disappeared as the cat purred for the last time: Black was dead.

Nowadays, you still can hear running on the roof some days: is it some stray cat, or maybe something else?.......

I used to do Ouija boards when I was a kid and I had some experiences that made me believe in the supernatural, but that's all irrelevant here.

Let me tell you what happened tonight. I was out at the local bar where I know one of the barmen, who had been telling me about how the place was haunted. He said one of the bouncers could "see" ghosts and that he had this crystal with him, that would spin around when a "presence" was near and you could then ask questions, to which the crystal would swing back and forward for yes, and sideways for no.

I was somewhat skeptical about this, but after having heard the stories about how two people had died in the building about 30 years back when it used to be a cinema, I stuck around to see what would happen.

About 6 of us went up to the second floor after closing time: including me, my friend, and the bouncer with the crystal. The crystal was on the end of a string and it began to spin round after a while: at which point we took it in turns to ask questions, the crystal always getting the right answer. After everyone had pretty much run out of questions, I figured I'd ask it if it would show itself, but it wasn't my turn so I stored the question in my head. The crystal started to swing sideways, indicating no, yet no one had asked a question. The guy with the crystal (we'll call him Dave from now onwards) asked if any of us had said anything: no one had, so I told him that I was about to, but hadn't yet. He asked me if I'd thought the question and I said yes, so he told me that I'd just received my answer.

That was one of the things that made me less skeptical: the fact that no one had asked anything for a good couple of minutes, but as soon as I thought that, it swung sideways. After that had happened, Dave asked if it wouldn't show itself because of Suzanne (the one female present), who was pretty fucking scared by now, and it swung forward and back to indicate yes.

One of the other guys was pretty skeptical and was going on about involuntary movements and all sorts of stuff, so I offered to hold the crystal.

I swear that I NEVER moved my hand or my arm and kept them as still as possible, and the crystal began to spin and people started asking questions again. All with the correct answers supplied, but whenever anyone asked for some kind of proof, it swung quickly sideways.

After about an hour, we gave up and started to head home. I was pretty spooked by then, even though I hadn't actually seen anything.

Next Sunday, we're going to do it again without Suzanne in the building, which should hopefully prove it one way or another.

Couple of sidenotes: Loads of staff say they have seen ghosts, especially late at night when there's very few people in the building.

Last week, some of the people tried this (I wasn't there) and Dave asked the spirit or whatever if someone else could hold the crystal, to which the reply was No. But he gave it to a guy called Bernie anyway who held it for about 30 seconds, at which point the string became too hot to hold and burnt his fingers (he still has the marks now).

The same night, Dave got four perfectly lined up and symmetrical scratches on his neck which appeared after he asked for evidence there was a spirit there.

The crystal also started spinning really fast and got tangled in the string after someone asked if the spirit wanted to be here. I can't believe there is any way that could happen without any noticeable hand movements in the person holding the crystal.

Tonight, Dave's dog was up there with us. After spending about 5 minutes going barking mad and running around, he lay down on Dave's feet and never moved an inch til we left.

Anyway, I really want to believe... but without some kind of proof, I'm finding it hard, no matter how spooked how I am right now. I just hope next Sunday brings something tangible.

Does anyone know anything about these crystals? Has anyone had any kind of experiences like this? Either where you believe or don't believe, I'd like to hear both sides of it. Not really interested in ghost stories, as there are threads about that all the time... more in times you've actively sought out contact with the supernatural and succeeded or failed.

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Six hours at Richmond Centre

just got back from six hours at Richmond Centre..
yes, I did indeed buy the knapsack calculator..
also got birthday / baptism / Christmas cards for people..
(including a VeggieTales card for Vivian.. she'll like it)
bought stickers and a blue coiled notebook, as well..
had dinner at White Spot, so all that makes me content..
I have cards for faraway friends as well as local ones..
it's all about the relationships in life, kiddies! ;)

What's your level of temper?

6 - Crazy temper

You get very angry over many things that you shouldn't get angry about at all!(breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out)

Click Here to Take This Quiz
Brought to you by quizzes and personality tests.

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Gentle kindness makes me sappy

I just woke up, after a not-so-restful night..
but at least I know WHY it wasn't peaceful..
got to thinking about someone's gentle kindness..
experienced an overwhelming need for his presence..
it's not a "I love you so much, it hurts" type of thing..
true love may not be for me, though other forms may be..
call me sappy or over-sentimental or what you will..
I'm missing him even though we're keeping in touch!
suffice to say he's a sweetheart, and I'd love to meet him..
no second thoughts or self-doubt here, for once ;)
if that happened, I'd hug him tightly for some time..
right now, any contact is good.. I'm not sad, I'm happy!
there's no stramash at all with us.. memories are positive!

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Breathe the pressure!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CONRAD.. I hope you have a fun one today! :) It's been cool watching you grow up.

Prodigy's song Breathe is on the radio now..
I know one of you will REALLY like that bit of info..
actually, I like the song as well.. what am I on about? ;)
tomorrow, I'm going to buy myself a new calculator..
I'm tired of always forgetting my pencil case on weekends..
didn't used to do that, but now I do.. what's up with that?
(the calculator we use for Awana is too hard for me to open)
at any rate, this calculator will STAY in my knapsack..
let's hope I remember that vow tomorrow when I get home..

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Sunday, November 09, 2003

Times with Eric H. and Arthur

I called Eric H. just now to see if he was still up for a movie..
he does still want to see Scary Movie 3..
the 3:30 showing at Richmond Centre suits us just fine..
told him where my place was.. being there at 2:45 is good..
should be doable even if I do go to Linda's memorial service..
hopefully, things end in a timely fashion there..

also called Jon to update him on what went on today..
he thought Vanessa would appreciate his joke..
maybe she did, I don't know.. I'll tell her about it..
told me that he wouldn't be there on Friday night..
I can see it now: more weird times with Eric M. :)

checked my email earlier tonight, and found a great one..
Arthur's been thinking of me sweetly and sends warm hugs..
it's good to know he's still out there, and keeping in touch..
asked how I was, and if anything was new with me..
(definitely updated him on the past week.. I trust him)
if he gets the Internet soon, that'll be excellent..
still hopes to get away from everything there and start anew..
my wishes are warmly felt / appreciated / accepted..
we feel the same way about tangible reminders of people..
what with the prevalent pictures of anybody doing anything..
computers definitely don't feel real enough!

he and I might also have to get new pics done for the other..
I'd say that wouldn't exactly be a bad experience ;)
gave me his address and phone number just so I have it..
asked out of curiosity whether I had a cell phone.. nope!
misses chatting with me, plus our ideas and theories..
and seeing ideas / perspectives from a different point of view..
(I miss all that, plus the humorous banter between us)

he hopes everything's okay with me now..
hasn't seen me on Yahoo in a bit, and I guess he worries..
sweet of him to be concerned.. I did reassure him, of course!
(if there WAS something amiss, I'd find a way to let him know..
I definitely wouldn't want him to worry overmuch..)
I'm glad that we'll both be keeping in touch more..
we can't wait to hear from the other / finally see the other..
these weekly emails are definitely highlight material for me :D

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Ghost stories, part 17

Part the First: The high school I went to was built in the early 60's, and is on the edge of the city I live in. There are two other schools nearby, and a grass airstrip across the road. The closest house is about 1/2 mile down the road in any direction. This becomes important later on. I am a theatre guy and I work backstage (read: I am not an actor). Many times, I was the only techie on a special event, or I was in charge of the tech areas of whatever show. As such, it fell to me to turn the lights off for the director and make sure all the doors were locked and the various equipment (light board, sound board, etc.) was off or at least on power-save mode. The theater originally had a movie projector in a cramped room now mostly used for storage which we called the spot room. This room was at the back of the auditorium, and had one small hatch on the centerline of the back wall almost at the level of the ceiling. This hatch was kept closed during shows because some of the heating equipment was located in the spot room, and it could get pretty noisy some nights. So one night, I was finishing up turning lights out, and I was walking across the stage to turn off the houselights when I notice the spot room is lit up and the hatch is opened. I thought it was probably a janitor, so I called for the director to call up maintenance and see if anyone is working on the heating stuff in the spot room.

The director reminds me that the building engineer had come into the booth to tell us he and his people were leaving and that we would have to remember not to leave the theater because the alarm would go off. So my friend Jon and I walked up to the spot room and I turned all the lights off and lock the door. We are standing on the stage talking to the director about a problem with the dimmer racks when he mentions that we were supposed to turn the spot room lights off. I said we had and Jon verified it. Just then every light (the work lights, not the stage lighting) in the beams area above the audience turns on and then off and then back on. Jon and I race up the stairs to the beams thinking that someone snuck up there and is trying to screw with us. I stand at the door and Jon goes in to look around. He says that someone must have left the roof hatch open (it was the middle of December and we opened it to let the hot air escape from the beams) because it's "cold as ice." I remind him that we didn't have it open that night because of the snow, and he says he can't see anyone. We turn off the lights, I lock the door, and we go back downstairs. Meanwhile, the director had gone up to the spot room and come back to the stage. We quickly walk out and I lock the door behind us.

Part the second: While doing a tech rehearsal for a musical in the same theatre, I was in the booth running the light board. In this theatre, we used a cordless headset system sold by Radio Shack. These things were utter crap and literally ate 9 volts. This particular day, I had just gotten everyone's headsets fixed, and everyone now had a battery that was brand new. In the middle of calling the show, the stage manager cut out completely. I called and called, and she didn't answer. Finally, I just stuck my head out the booth and shouted to her that she was off-air. She was sitting up in the spot room and called down that she could hear us just fine and I immediately went upstairs to check her headset. The thing worked fine once I got up there and I traded her headsets and we went on with rehearsal. At dinner time, we let the actors go out to the lobby area where a couple of parents had brought pizzas. The rest of the tech crew and I stayed behind in the theatre and worked on some of the scene change cues.

During the change we worked on first, we had to have one person in the beams in order to change some focus on the lights while we tweaked the scenery. My friend Joe volunteered, and he climbed up there and we started work. Not five minutes after I went dark to start working on the problem, all the work lights in the beams started turning on and off. I yelled a few well-chosen remarks, and Joe replied that he wasn't doing it and whoever else was up here running around back in the beams could cut it out. I did a quick head count and no one was missing. I sent my ALD out to the lobby and he counted the actors and radioed me they were all there. At this point, I got really pissed off and shouted for the director to come out and get whoever was messing around in the beams. He came out of his office and we went up to the beams and started searching around. We never found anybody, and I figured they must have gone up to the grid or out through the spot room. We checked with the stage manager who was sitting in the spot room and she hadn't seen anyone. The rest of the night over the headsets, we kept hearing footsteps and the same thing happened every time someone had to be in the beams at night.

That's just two of many stories involving the theatre at my high school. When I graduated in 2000, it was still going on and by all accounts, getting worse. If there's any interest, I'll post about the night my teacher chased a girl through the theatre that no one else had seen and who faded into the back wall of the beams.

I ended up living with my mother again due to a lack of funds after a live-in girlfriend and I broke up. A couple of months after I had moved back in, my mother got a call from my aunt that my grandfather had died (we live in Ca., they live in Mass.). I'd like to point out right here that I was always close to my grandparents, and I still hate the fact that I've never been able to get back to Mass. to even so much as visit their graves (hell, I'm still poor). ANYWAY, my mother flew back to help with funeral arrangements, etc., while I sat around the house depressed. The house had a somewhat odd design with a pair of balconies that overlooked the living room / dining room area, and I was downstairs watching TV and doing my best not to completely lose it. For some reason, I got the feeling that someone was watching me, but the living room / dining room area had a LOT of windows, so I didn't think too much about it (I also didn't want to look out the windows because I'm a big chickenshit, but that's beside the point). For some reason, I looked up at one of the balconies though, and there was my grandfather. He wasn't doing anything but standing there looking at me. This was only for a few seconds though, as someone pulled up in the driveway, and the headlights caught my attention. When I looked back to the balcony, he was gone. Occasionally, I still get the feeling that both he and my grandmother "check up" on me. I don't know how to explain it, I just get the feeling occasionally that they're nearby, and my mother has said that she feels it too every once in a while, and she swears that she's seen him more than once.

Back Story:

I had a friend when I was 10 or so who lived in an old schoolhouse which had supposedly (i.e. I never saw concrete evidence) caught on fire and killed a lot of children in the early 1900's. It was definitely haunted. Every night I spent there, I saw things I couldn't explain. Ceiling fans would stop slowly and start spinning the opposite way for no apparent reason. Lights would go on and off, giggles could be heard, etc. Friendly ghosts, by any standards, which were rarely scary.

The only thing the ghosts ever did that freaked me out: one night, I was sleeping on his floor when a basketball rolled under his bed and started dribbling underneath his bed... which was completely impossible, considering the ball BARELY fit underneath the bed. My friend and his parents could all communicate with the ghosts through something similar to telepathy on occasion. The ghosts had never appeared, and they had no clue what they looked like. They only heard sounds and saw things.

The Main Story:

One day, my mother and I were on our way home from the grocery store when my mother got the feeling she was being followed. My mother tends to be completely paranoid, so I was kind of used to it. Sure enough, we were being followed by a green car. We lived in a lower-middle class rural area, so it was odd to have cars follow us very far outside of town.

We didn't recognize the car, so Mom drove past our driveway and went to my friend's house instead, as his dad had guns like crazy. This schoolhouse had its own horribly graveled road (oddly enough, Schoolhouse Road) that bridged the road I lived on with another road. No one had a reason to travel on the road, so we KNEW someone was following us after they started turning down the road. The car hesitated, turned around, and left.

From this point on, I only heard what happened from my mom, who heard it from my friend's mom.

About a week later, my friend's mom was home alone at about 10 at night. My friend was staying the night at my house, and her husband worked late nights. The ghosts had told her something was wrong. Unsure what was wrong, she looked out her window. Sure enough, the green car was sitting at the end of her driveway. She turned on the porch lights, and the car quickly sped away.

Five minutes later. she got the same feeling. She looked outside and there was the green car again. Burglars, she suspected. She turned on the light and the car sped off again.

Another 5 minutes later, she got the feeling again. Her husband would be home soon, so she was just going to try to protect herself until he got home. She grabbed a shotgun, headed for the door and turned on the light. She pointed the shotgun out of the door and the car left, and never came back.

I suppose you could say the ghosts saved her life and indirectly, mine.

I was always terrified of being alone in our first house. Granted, I was young; we moved out when I was 10 or 11, but even in the daytime, I felt extremely scared of going upstairs if no one was up there. The attic and basement were absolutely no-fly zones... I'd never go there alone and was even uncomfortable accompanied by others. I don't remember any specific sightings or odd things though. I chalked up my fear due to being exposed to movies like Poltergeist / Exorcist when very young (stupid parents), but I don't recall a time before seeing those movies that I wasn't similarly fearful in that house.

After we moved out, I became friends with the new owner's son. After a few years, he admitted to me one day that he felt creeped out in the house, and claimed to have heard a voice calling him when no one was home. I shrugged it off at the time.

My aunt lived with my grandmother just a block away from us. My grandmother and grandfather both died in that house, I'm fairly sure, and my aunt suffered a stroke there as well but died in the hospital. So you'd think something interesting would happen to me when we moved there, but alas, I felt no fear in that older house, even with the deaths and overall creakiness that comes with a 50-year-old structure with odd cubbyholes and winding staircases. Nothing at all happened to me there, but my mom and dad had a story each that I feel can be explained away logically, but who knows. I'll share them anyway.

1. When my father was very young, his mother would wake him up in the mornings by grabbing his foot and shaking it. Well, he was in his late 40's when my aunt died, and my grandmother (his mom) had died about 3 years earlier. While he was cleaning out the house for us to move there, he slept in the attic on my grandfather's old bed. It was a King-sized bed with a very hard mattress and ugly 70's brown sheets. The first night there (and the first night he slept in that house for decades), he inadvertently forgot to set an alarm clock for work, but he awoke to what felt like someone shaking his leg. When he woke up, startled, he says his foot was still just a bit in motion. It was the exact time he needed to get up.

2. My mother said once she woke up, and she felt as if someone was lying on top of her. She felt the pressure all over her body, and felt it move like a person. No one was in the room with her (my parents didn't get along). I'm pretty sure she was sleeping in my aunt's bed at the time.

For a person with an extreme fear yet fascination of the paranormal (this thread and the other 3 scared the crap out of me, but I read them), I have yet to have any type of real experience with it.

The night was calm, almost uncomfortably calm. L (my gf) and I decided to go for a late night drive out to Cape Spear, the most easterly point in North America. There's some cool stuff out there, like big cannons and an old abandoned concrete armory which runs through a pitch black tunnel underground. Stuff leftover from war days, basically.

We walked through the armory with only a small flashlight, which was extremely freaky, but nothing out of the ordinary happened. Then, of course, the flashlight died. It came back on in a minute or so, and we hurried out and decided to head home.

While driving back the long dark road, I think I see an animal on the road. In fact, I'm sure I saw something, but then it was close enough to see clearly in the headlights, and nothing was there? And then out of nowhere, I see 4 legs running, then disappearing, then running, then disappearing, hitting the side of the road and disappearing completely. All I could see were legs, and even they weren't very visible, despite being right in front of the headlights. I look out my window and there is definitely no animal around.

L sees the whole thing as well, but convinces herself that she imagined it. When she saw me look out the window, she was JUST about to say: "I thought I saw an animal," thinking I was wondering why she slowed. Before she got it out though, I exclaimed: "THAT ANIMAL JUST DISAPPEARED."

We were both thoroughly spooked because whatever it was it obviously was NOT solid. To make things worse, about a minute later, a REALLY heavy fog fell, and we could barely see.

My grandfather lived across the street from me my whole life. He had this bigass 3-story brick house. It was sort of old and musty because he didn't really keep it up after my grandmother died. (Before I was born) I have to throw this in now, but it will be clear why I have later in the story: My Grandfather was the BIGGEST ATLANTA BRAVES FAN EVER. I used to watch Braves games with him all the time as a little boy.

Anyway, I left town for college. In 1995 (my second year of college), he was stricken with pancreatic cancer and died in his house while I was in Florida at school. Anyway, to make a long story short, my mom had to sell his house. A nice couple with 2 young children bought it as a fixer-upper. They have done a fabulous job, btw.

Anyway, whenever I was home from school, I would make it a point to go over and chat with them for awhile, and look at what progress they had made fixing it up. I would joke about how creepy it used to look and how it was so much better. Whenever I talked with the husband, I always got the feeling that he wanted to ask me about something, but was hesitant.

Anyway, one Christmas Eve, I was over there talking to the husband... he had been drinking beer and offered me one. His wife and kids were out of town at her parents' house for Christmas. (husband and in-laws don't get along AT ALL) I start to get the feeling that he wants to tell me something, but is holding back. Finally, I ask him about it. This is what he said:

"Man, you're going to think I'm nuts... but I think your grandfather's house is haunted."

I asked him to explain why. He said that a lot of times when his wife and kids are out of town, he will leave the TV in the den on when he is around the house painting, hanging drywall, etc. for some background noise. He explained that he almost always turns the channel to the weather channel because he is an amateur meteorologist. He told me that sometimes, every now and then, he will walk into the den to grab his drink or sit down for a bit and the TV won't be on the weather channel anymore. He wouldn't think anything of it normally, he told me, because sometimes TVs do weird shit. But what he had noticed is that the TV is INVARIABLY switched to TBS. (the Superstation) And that INVARIABLY there is only one kind of program on.

An Atlanta Braves baseball game.

I hiked Massey Draw. I hiked it alone, with friends, with family. Hundreds of times, in all seasons. Massey Draw is a relatively short (~7 miles) well-maintained trail in Littleton, Colorado. It can be found in the neighborhood of Ken Caryl, which resides just behind the front range of the CO Rockies. The trail, despite its short length, is surprisingly difficult. I would estimate the rise to be about 1200 feet from the bottom. It's accessed by hiking up a fairly wide trail for about a mile, which then branches off to the right and to the left. To the right, the wider trail continues, fairly level, until it reaches the Manor House trail. To the left is Massey Draw, a single track, steep trail that curves up and around the back of the mountain. It also eventually connects with a branch of the Manor House.

I would most frequently hike this trail with my friend Jon. Now, Jon is a solid character, and not one to make anything up just for the hell of it. He's currently majoring in Electrical Engineering, at the Colorado School of Mines. Jon and I would bring food and water for about 2 hours of hiking, although we normally finished the trail much faster than that. Besides common sense, Jon also has a well-off family, so money for better hiking shoes, poles, and other assorted gear was never a problem. We spent hours downtown at the REI flagship store, thinking about what we would buy if we were "real" expeditioneers.

We hiked in the snow. Camped in it, too. There's something viscerally pleasing about that thin line between insane cold, and the warmth of your mummy bag (a full body 0-degree sleeping bag). It's how we got the edge during the winter, without spending a fortune on lift tickets. We actually had several successful snow-hikes, and one very successful campout before we decided to make it up Massey in the dark and sleep near the top. After our first successful camping trip, Jon decided that slipping around on the ice with a 75-pound pack wasn't the most efficient way of doing things, so he invested in a pair of crampons. For those who are fortunate enough to live in warmer climes: crampons are attachments for your boot, and consist of large metal "spikes" that prevent you from slipping on ice. They are basically a necessity when doing any sort of hiking during the winter, especially at night. I wish I had known this rule before we headed out that day.

Jon took point up the lead-in trail. I carried the pack and followed behind. We started our ascent at roughly 6:45 PM, and were expecting to make it to the top of the Draw at 8:45, latest. There was about 1 and a half feet of fresh powder on the ground, but it didn't hinder us in the slightest. Full of piss and vinegar, we marched on like good little soldiers in the 10-degree winter wonderland. This was a good idea. We were prepared for anything:

* Tent
* Food for 3 days
* Extra water
* 0-degree mummy bags
* Sunglasses
* Cell phones
* First aid
* Emergency rations (Powerbar, Clif)
* Solid boots
* Warm, warm clothing

And Jon had his crampons attached to the back of my pack, clinking along as I walked and helping me establish a rhythm. If you've ever done any serious amount of hiking, you'd know the importance of maintaining a steady cadence. Knowing the trail, your limits, and the needs of your body make this a second-nature practice. You'll pass a landmark and take a drink of water, take in the scenery, and know exactly how far you need to go before it will be time to take a break. We knew all of these things as we set out on the left fork: the fork that would take us deep into the heart of Massey Draw.

Jon and I had, on past hikes, remarked on how starting up the Draw was like entering a different world. The trail itself is basically a deep ravine in the side of the mountain, with a mid-sized stream running down the middle of the whole thing. There are 4 stream crossings over the course of the hike, all near the top. "Time out of time," was how I aptly described Massey Draw on a particularly nice hike, during a beautifully lush and mercifully cool summer's day. Jon had always shared this opinion, but I could tell there was something he wasn't telling me about his true opinion of the trail. See, you get to know a mountain. Not just the trail, but the vibe, the essence of the wilderness around you. It's directly linked to instinct and the will to survive, of course. Even a trail like Massey Draw, which began in a sprawling suburban community, could have a powerful enough "vibe" to impart the sense of stepping out of time. I remember Jon telling me once why he was afraid of certain parts of the trail. Since it doesn't really apply to the story, I won't go into incredible detail, but the basic idea is that he was going up alone and saw and heard a very odd thing on a certain point in the trail.

The part of the trail that was now covered in a light dusting of pine needles and snowfall. We passed over it and I think we might have briefly recalled the events of his previous excursion, but decided that discretion was the better part of valor and quit talking about it. One of the first things you'll notice on Massey Draw is the silence. This is amplified during the winter, and snow on the ground will swallow words and sentences whole. It's advisable to be looking directly at whomever you're speaking with. After making it about halfway up the trail, we decided to take a short break before tackling the harder section of the trail - the top half.

The top half is harder for two reasons; one is the steep grade of the ascent, the other is that there are 4 sections of the trail that are situated right above small cliffs of about 10 feet. This was not the time to be without crampons, as I discovered. We were making good time up, when we came across the first of many odd events that would take place that night. If you've never seen an ice waterfall, let me describe it to you: you can hear the water rushing underneath the thick later of ice. Not just flat, roller rink ice, but wild and untamed river ice. Ice that's 2 feet thick in one section and 2 inches in the next, and wants you to climb on over and figure out which is which. Of course, Jon, being the braver and better equipped of the two of us, decides he wants to try to climb up the thing using his crampons. Well, to make a long story short, he didn't make it up. Even a 6-foot icefall can be threatening when it's getting dark and your partner doesn't really dig the idea of packing your broken-legged ass down the mountain in the middle of a storm.

See, this is just about where the paranoia starts to set in.

A good hiker, besides maintaining a steady rhythm, will make interesting conversation with his partner. I suppose it's another one of those unwritten rules; after all, you are taking a serious risk doing anything outdoors in the middle of winter, and trust in your partner is invaluable. So, we talked about the weather, the girlfriends, and the hike itself. Anything to keep the blood pumping and the minds working. But mostly we talked about the hike. What if one of us broke a leg? It was starting to snow, so cell phone reception would be an unlikely prospect unless at the top of the pass. Could the remaining partner build some sort of crude sled, or would it be smarter to bunker the injured member down in the tent and hike back for help? Of course, the trouble with hiking back alone is that if you fell and hurt yourself, your partner would be SOL until someone found you. Laying in sub-degree temperatures with a broken leg and only 3 days of food and water within reach is not a very pleasing mental image, is it? I could go on for quite a while as to what we conversed about during the second half, but I won't. What I want to get across is that, whether we said it out loud or not, things were going in the wrong direction.

Perhaps, before I go to bed for the night, I will return briefly to the subject of intuition and instinct. I would define instinct as "the ability to know something's out of place before it enters your field of reaction." On a more base level: Oh, FUCK. It's never subtle, and it's almost never the harbinger of a pleasant experience.

Massey Draw, pt. 2

Instinctually, we knew something was going terribly wrong. The normal sounds you would hear in the middle of a snow storm were just... not there. Ice cracking, trees in the wind, all of them suddenly sounded distant and cold.

Of course, we got lost.

We wandered for what seemed like hours, trying to follow the stream to the top of the trail, trying to recognize familiar landmarks. Failing. It got to the point where we were crossing our own footprints every 4 feet or so. Eventually, we had a lead. At the top of the trail, the narrow single-track opens up into a wide expanse on top of the mountain. The entire area encompasses about 2 square miles, and is covered in thick brush, about 4-5 feet high. And there it was, the instantly recognizable trail, a double-track going straight into the brush. It is the only trail on the mountain.

Just for fun, let me give you a quick run down on the 2nd half of the

* Landmark 1: low cliff on the left side, can be crossed over the top
or under
* 2: stream crossing #1
* 3: large rock on the left
* 4: stream crossing #2
* 5: larger rock on the right
* 6: stream crossing #3
* 7: stream crossing #4
* 8: small Aspen grove at top of ravine, double-track trail continues
to the right
* 9: double-track through bush, several medium-sized rocks in middle
of trail

Throughout the entire trail are BRIGHT ORANGE trailmarkers, NAILED TO THE TREES.

We saw none of these, even though we were using the halogen headlamps and actively searching for them. It's now about 9 PM, and paranoia has turned to fear. The darkness around us seems overwhelming as we go back over the same tracks again and again. The double-track we found up top was a dead end. Images of the Blair Witch Project spring to mind, but are quickly replaced by real fear. We are losing track of time. Jon and I make the call to go back down. This is the part where I dearly wished I had crampons, as I slipped and slid about halfway down the trail. We made pretty good time, considering the snowfall had increased significantly.

We made it down. We tried to explain away our confusion, tried to write it off to being lost in the dark. That didn't happen, so we called it a night. Jon went back 2 days later with Kate.

Kate was also a reliable gal. She was a little bit flighty (think the English Major type), but could provide an objective view of the events that had happened up to that point. They arrived at the lead-in trail, and saw something a bit unexpected: the footprints of two people in the snow. Why unexpected? Perhaps I should clarify, this trail was part of the neighborhood, literally in some people's back yard. It was high-use. Nevertheless, Jon and Kate pushed on up the trail. During the 1st half of Massey: two pair of footprints, still just Jon and I. During the 2nd half, well, things were not so clear.

Or perhaps they were, and that was what was so terrifying. Bright orange markers every 15 feet or so. Landmarks, exactly where they could be expected. And footprints everywhere, hundreds of them. They crossed over each other, came to dead ends, went up slopes that were absurdly far away from the trail. And eventually, all these footprints converged on one point. The double-track.

Jon could barely keep his composure as he related these next words to me, later on that evening.

"We got to the top of the trail, where it opens up, and we could just see your footprints and mine again. So we followed them. We followed them right up until they stopped and turned around. Jeff, they stopped RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE TRAIL. There was a fucking SIGN POST not 10 feet away from where we just stopped, turned around, and walked into the fucking brush!"

Needless to say, neither one of us has been back since.

My childhood friend Kim lived in Kingsbury, about 2 miles from where I lived. Her house was across the street and down a little side street from our church, and in the summer I'd spend most Sunday nights over there. (Keep in mind, this is in the middle of nowhere) There was this grey brick building next to her house and we never really knew what it was, but we were curious. So one Sunday afternoon, we decided to check it out. The doors were chained shut but not tightly and we could open them enough to squeeze through. Inside was an oldass desk and a LOT of dust. We looked around and noticed a book on a podium in the upstairs room. Upon opening it, we saw it was a Bible and inside it was the freemasons symbol. I knew what it was because my great-uncle was one and wore his pin sometimes. On the floor, scattered about, were what I call levels but were more like metal rulers, a compass, and pencils and shit like that. Nothing happened, but it was scary: a bright, sunny Sunday afternoon and this place was graveyard-quiet and musty and dirty. We ended up getting the hell out of there and spending the rest of the afternoon watching cartoons to forget about it.

My aunt and uncle live out in the country in a tiny village of 60-70 people. I spent a lot of time there as a kid. Well, one day I was cleaning stuff up there and their giant-ass old stereo clicks on, volume full blast, on an 80's rock station. Several things are wrong here. The most obvious is "Why the fuck did the stereo turn on?" Next was that the residents of the house were hardcore gospel and slow country fans. They would not leave the radio set to rock. And the final thing is that the volume control was a large round knob that had hard stops to keep you from turning it too far. And it was rolled all the way to full. I forgot about this until a week or so ago when I was talking to my mother about weird stuff that's happened. She mentioned that not only did the stereo turn itself on but the air conditioner, television, and assorted electrical devices did too. With every re-occurrence.

I asked her if it still happened, as I'm now home for the weekend so I could investigate. "No, it's all stopped now. They locked the door to the guest room and put a padlock on it."

Stop. Right. There. That room gave me nightmares as a kid. I refused to go in there. It was always cold, even in mid-summer. Everything was old and well-used. And right dead center in the room was a statue of The Virgin Mary with a snake at her feet. And all her fingers and toes are broken off.

"Now something bangs on the door every few nights."

FLAMING POGOSTICK JESUS NO. I was a brave (dumb) kid, but that room gave me the screaming heebie jeebies. My uncle actually mentioned the banging, so it's not being made up. He's a really aggressive skeptic.


1) Chicago, Illinois: People have reported driving along the back roads around abandoned parts of the city and seeing houses that seem out of place. Essentially, these places just don't have broken windows and peeling paint (they have also been described as old-timey). Once in a while, a car will die near one of these places, and the driver will go in and the house will fade out or pull some other disappearing act.

You’re probably saying: "Well, how the hell do we know this if the person in the car just vanished?" Well, unfortunately most stories are from bums and other riffraff). Not too reliable until you consider that these people probably don't share notes much, and this has been going on for some time. Also, once in a while 2 or 3 people are in the car and only one goes in.

Maybe it's just a good excuse to make someone disappear, but if that's the case, it's been an excuse for about half a century.

2) London, England: I used to have the address of the place memorized, but that was a while ago. Anyone, or any group, that spent the night there would be found dead the next morning. I think this started after the police killed several suspected robbers / murderers in the sewers under the place. It was apparently connected to the big tunnels via a WWII era tunnel built for taking shelter during raids.

Anyway, the bodies were not recovered because they got lost in a swift current of filth and, hey, who wants to chase down the bodies of horrible people like that in a sewer? The residents died soon thereafter, but they all died due to massive shock brought on by something traumatic. Three unrelated people in different "flats." Next, the owner was staying the night while finishing up some business on the property (obviously the personal effects of 3 people needed to be gotten the heck out of there). The owner was dead the next morning just like the 3 residents (same cause).

The cops noticed, and 3 (possibly as many as 5) particularly brave policemen decided to stake the place out thinking that maybe they hadn't killed all the guys in the sewer. The guy(s) on the top floor get woken up by screaming down below and rush to investigate. First, they get hit by the stench. It was described as being worse than the actual sewer. Then, on the ground floor they meet up with the guy who screamed, and he basically dies of pure fear before he gets a chance to tell the other cop(s) what is so damn scary that it kills people. All the while, the stench is getting worse. As the remaining cop(s) is inching to the basement stairs, something covered in sewer filth that has four arms and a vaguely human head with hair, but with four eyes, comes up at them / him.

I don't know if there were three or five cops, but I know that only one made it, and he had to take a few weeks off because he was in the hospital for a while. Later on, he gave the description without any problem, but could not account for the intense fear he felt. People living in the building adjacent to the evil one also reported randomly feeling an overwhelming terror coming from the building when their backs were facing it.

Those are the only two fatal examples I can think of. Like I said, they were for school reports and I had multiple sources for these stories, but I wouldn't know first hand.

Our house was new, and built for us, so I don't know of any reason it would be haunted. No one died in it, or anything, though an electrician fried himself to death under the neighbors house when it was built.

Regardless, here's the tales.

The first one happened when I was about 14 or 15, and trying to get a singing voice rocking through the puberty-induced voice deepening that had happened a bit ago. Didn't work too well for a while, but hey, I was a trooper, and now I can sing decently well again. I practiced mostly to The Beatles: my brother and I are big fans and we harmonize quite well. Well, I was singing along with Paul McCartney's tune Another Girl, and got to the line "And so I'm tellin' you, this time you'd better stop."

Being a dork with dreams of being a musician (which haven't faded, just taken a more realistic back-seat to college), I was practicing a bit of showmanship, and pointed at the stereo and really belted the word "stop." The fucking thing just shut off. I don't mean the CD skipped, or stopped, or anything... the whole stereo powered off. Freaked me out, and I just shut off the PA, and fucked off downstairs to get a cold beverage and be freaked out.

The second was when my TV decided that it damn well wanted to watch Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. I was up late at night, reading a book, and saw that RotLA was coming on. Now, while I love Indy, I'd seen that one quite recently at a friend's house on his big-screen, so our little monaural 23" boob tube wasn't going to sully that experience for me. I got up and turned off the TV (no remote), sat back down, and picked up the book. Just as I was scanning the page for where I was, the TV turned back on.

Ooooookay. So once again, I turn it back off, and start walking back to read more, when click! It's back on. I decide "fuck it, I can read with Indiana Jones in the background," so I do. Ended up reading throughout the entire flick. Weirdly enough, as soon as the credits roll, and finish, the TV shuts itself off. Remember, no remote, and it was a decently new set, the buttons didn't stick or anything. Once again, I decided that the room I was in was NOT the room to be in for me, and went up to my room to continue reading.

I've thought I've had the odd ghostly encounter over the years, but generally I dismiss them.

The first one that comes to mind was about a week after my grandfather died. He died about two days before I received some exam results, and I was a little sad that he didn't know my grades, since he'd been looking forward to hearing them, and that I never got to hear him congratulating me (he was possibly the most encouraging person I'd ever met). Anyway...

I suffer from sleep paralysis on a fairly regular basis. At first, it used to completely scare the crap out of me - now I'm fairly used to it, and I just wait it out.

The horrible thing with sleep paralysis is that it is exactly as its name suggests - you are completely paralysed. I find that I am able to bend my elbows and knees, but that isn't much use because it always feels like my shoulders, hands, feet, head, neck, and hips are nailed to the bed. And it hurts a lot. This means I can't look around the room at all.

It was during one of these attacks that I have a vague memory of being just able to see my grandfather sitting on the end of my bed laughing and smiling. He'd be talking about how I really should have put a little bit more effort into my maths exam, though I did very well anyway.

An old folktale to explain sleep paralysis was about a succubus coming and sitting on you (sometimes actually trying to have intercourse with you). I've felt like this sometimes during these attacks, and just on the edge of hearing, I pick up faint sounds of a woman breathing deep and moaning gently. No, this isn't as erotic as it might sound - imagine having sex when you feel like you've got daggers shoved through every joint in your body and can't move your mouth to scream.

Anyway, the only "ghost" story I have, as opposed to freaky sleep incidents, is the old manor house round the corner from me. Years ago, it was a privately-owned manor in which a number of deaths occurred. The first, most publicised, was of a woman who fell off an upstairs balcony into the pool, snapped her neck, and drowned. Quite a few people have reported sightings of a ghost of this woman - who apparently is very angry and vengeful. There were a few others, but my story concerns a lesser-known one I heard from a girl I was seeing at the time.

The manor is now owned by the hotel next door, who rent it out as conference rooms and banquet halls for parties. It's actually a rather beautiful building and is internally decorated with coats of arms, suits of armour, and weapons left by the family who previously owned it. This girl's mother was having her retirement party in this building (she worked for the hotel, so it was extremely cheap), and of course I was invited. Being the eternal skeptic that I am known as, I scoffed when she told me about another death: the young boy of the family who occupied the manor in the 50s. He had been bouncing a ball in his bedroom (now one of the conference rooms) in the dark one night when he accidentally bounced it out of the door. In the dark, he chased after the ball, only to step on it at the top of the stairs, sending him flying. He was dead by the time he hit the bottom of the stairs.

Now, the ghost of this boy is famous for being mischievous. Knocking on the door when conferences and meetings are taking place in what was probably his bedroom, bouncing his ball down the stairs (so people hear a bouncing "thud, thud, thud" which gradually gets faster as the ball reaches the bottom, like a ball does), and generally playing silly pranks are his forte. Despite several glasses of champagne, I still wasn't going to believe this rubbish!

That is, until I went to the bathroom. It would appear the junk food I had been eating all day had caught up with me and I needed to evacuate my colon, something I hate doing in public anyway. So I sit in a cubicle in the toilets, which are upstairs, and the room seems really silent. I can't hear the party going on downstairs. The door opens, and I still can't hear the party. I hear a man humming to himself and then using the urinal. He washes his hands, the door opens again, and he leaves. I'm just about finished now, when I hear the door open again. I can hear the party now. The door closes and I hear nothing more. Can't hear anyone in the room at all. "Must just be someone going into the wrong door," I think to myself. Then just as I am about to reach for the toilet paper... BAM!

The roll pops out of the holder, about a foot into the air like someone had struck it from below. Stunned, I don't even think to catch it. It hits the floor and rolls away.

Shit. I'm sitting here with a dirty butt and the toilet paper has run away. Oh well, there's nobody in here. I'll just open the cubicle door and go grab it. Just outside the cubicle, it had began to unravel itself, so the first few sheets would've been just out of reach if I had put my hand under the door. It has rolled all the way across the bathroom (which is really quite large, I hasten to add). But that's not the freaky part. It had changed direction once almost to the wall on the far side. So there was a large /\ which points to the window. I grab a roll from a different stall instead, and clean myself up. Looking out the window, I can see the swimming pool where the woman died.

I was white as a sheet when I went and told my girlfriend about it.

edit: I should add that I'm pretty sure it would've been the ghost of the little boy that did this, since he's the one reputed for being a poltergeist. The woman just menaces and frightens people. I was getting the impression that the boy and the woman didn't like each other very much, and that's why he was pointing out at the pool.

1. I met Jim and Nate when I was in the 7th grade. The three of us were soon best friends and always hanging out over at Jim's house. We used to stay up as late as we could, watching Skinamax and shit like that. When we were in 9th grade, during finals week, Jim's parents went on vacation. So of course, Nate and I came over to stay the night. We'd been overnight there a lot of times, and every now and then had heard weird things, but nothing out of the ordinary for a house full of people.

It's like two in the morning and we'd just finished watching Batman Returns on tape. Upstairs, we hear talking coming from Jim's parents' bedroom. Jim's dad works the real early shift at one of the local skin mills, and thinking he'd left the alarm set on the clock radio, we head upstairs to turn if off. The talking stopped when we opened the door. The clock was on, but turns out it wasn't set to go off for like another half hour or so.

This creeped us out a little and we go back down to the living room, which has two couches and a love seat set in a U-Shape with the TV closing the U. I normally ended up sleeping on the love seat, as I was the shortest. We're just kinda hanging out, and watching softcore porn on HBO when we hear the talking again and people walking around upstairs. We go upstairs (this time with baseball bats) thinking somebody must be in the house. There's nobody in Jim's mom and dad's room, his sister's room (she was off at college), or his room. But the door to the attic, which is normally locked and shut, is wide open. Now, it's the middle of June and it's been hot for the last few weeks. His attic is usually stifling and just unbearably hot.

We went up those stairs into the middle of fucking winter. It had to be -30 in there. We were all shivering and we could see our breath in front of us. As we stood there, it got warmer... but the windows (one on either end of the attic) were both frosted over and the ice on them was slow to melt away.

I should mention that at this point, I didn't believe in spookies and ghosties... and I thought my two best buddies were pulling something on me. I laughed it all off and after exploring the whole attic for ghosts (I was looking for the fans and dry ice they'd obviously been using to cool the place down with), I led them back downstairs and we all fell asleep.

I had a dream that night that somebody was shaking me really really hard. I pulled myself out of the dream and woke up suspended in the air above the stairs to the second floor. All the lights in the house, and every electrical thing like radios, TVs, and the police scanner went nuts. This started inhuman shrieking, and Jim and Nate both woke up screaming and saw me hanging there over the stairs like a puppet.

I fell. The shrieking stopped, all the lights went out, and everything went dead except the stereo in Jim's parents' room, which was playing some old big band music. (Fucked up because it was set to PYX 106, the local Hard Rock station.) I called my dad and made him come pick us up. Nate went home and Jim spent the next week at my place. I never stayed there after dark again.


2. Things to know: Ever since I called the supposed spirit of a Druid a prick and told him to fuck off, OUIJA boards won't work for me. When I was sixteen or so, I used to hang out with a bunch of "mystical people," hence the contacting of the Druid that I told to fuck off. These mystic friends of mine insist that I have some enormous power that I'd yet to tap into. Bullshit if you ask me, but then again, I was raised in a very strict Christian household and taught not to believe in such Devilry. Whatever. On with the story.

When I was 19, I was seeing this girl named Andi. I was at work one day in late July when I just started to feel like absolute shit. Light-headed, extreme nausea, and sudden pains in my chest. I left early and went home. No sooner was I in the door when the phone rings. It's my buddy Tony. He's at our friend Sara's graduation party and they've used an OUIJA board to contact somebody who claimed to me be from a past life. (I don't think this is possible as it would be my spirit talking to them, and shouldn't I be aware of that?) Whatever it was, it was answering all kinds of personal questions about me from Andi and getting them right. And she wasn't touching the board.

Tony said I had to come see this, and so I drove over. The closer I got to Sarah's house, the worse my stomach feels and more my chest hurts. I pulled up to her house and just walked on inside. As I crossed the threshold of the doorway, something about the house just seemed wrong to me. I'd been there many times before and never felt anything like it. It just felt horribly wrong. That was when I heard Andi scream and a slamming noise started banging through the house. Everyone else started screaming.

I ran to Sarah's room which was at the back of the house. Have you ever driven down a road in the middle of the day, when there's like a canopy of trees over it? It's like driving through a tunnel? All dark, even though it's daylight? That's what Sarah's room looked like from the outside. I could tell the lights were on, but it just screamed of darkness. Andi was getting pushed up against the wall over and over again by an invisible hand. I ran into the room, and the darkness just seemed to melt away from me.

I don't know why I did what I did, or how I knew it would work, but I grabbed the indicator thing (can somebody tell me what it's called?) which was moving on its own, and wrestled it to goodbye. Then I flipped the board over. I heard what sounded like a mirror breaking and the creepiest fucking voice screaming "NO!" Andi stopped hitting the wall and just ran over to me and buried her face in my chest. My stomach felt fine, my light-headedness was gone, and the pains in my chest weren't there either.

Apparently what had happened was the thing they contacted asked Andi to touch the indicator so it could talk to her past self. As soon as she touched it, it started moving on its own and she hit the wall. That was right before I got there. Nobody else heard the mirror break or the voice screaming. Later that night, when Andi was feeling better, she told me to burn the board and I did.

I called up one of my old mystic friends the next day and she told me that what I had done was repel the evil spirit that was hurting my girlfriend, and by flipping the board, I had banished it temporarily. She said that because I was able to do all this, it's proof of these "powers" I have. I think she smoked a little too much weed, but I can't deny that any of it ever happened, nor any of the other weird shit that happens around my town and always seems to involve me and a select few of my friends.

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