Archive for October, 2015

This daughter and father’s ensemble. Jeebus.

night

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Educate yourself.

halloween

Well, may one fled. Sort of.

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A Shoe: Untied staple.

Me, circa 1967.

I’ve been wanting to write about this for awhile, but have been putting it off for obvious reasons. You know, I didn’t want anyone to think I was taking a stroll down Cuckoo Street or anything. Still, after the events of the other night and with Halloween coming up, I thought it might be time. Read on . . .It’s no surprise to some of my friends and family that the house I’m living in has a ghost hanging around in it. In fact, after reading my story about Sparky and the backdoor I had more than one person state matter-of-factly, “That wasn’t a burglar. That was your ghost.”

Shoot. In my excitement I hadn’t even thought of that. Hell, that’s exactly who it was. My ghost, just messin’ with me again.

For those of you that don’t know, I’m back living in the house I grew up in. The house and I are the same age, and I’ve lived here off-and-on over my life, although this is my first time back since the Spring of ’98. So, I obviously know this house better than anyone, and trust me when I say it’s haunted.

It is. Of that I have zero doubt.

There’s never been a murder committed nor has anybody has ever died here, as far as I know. Maybe something horrible happened before the house was built. Maybe the house is on Native American burial ground or something.

Maybe.

Yeah, I can hear the chuckles, see the shaking of the heads. I can also see some people nodding knowingly, having had similar experiences themselves. My sisters are two of the latter. They know. Just ask them or anyone else that’s lived here with me. They all have stories they can tell, I guarantee it.

Note: Please leave said discussions strictly to the ghost thing. You know, with the exes.

Anywho, my ghost is not really a scary ghost, although sometimes he can be a little, well, unnerving. All in all I think he’s just having a little fun.

I think.

I believe that because I’ve never really felt “threatened” per se. Thought – I hope that doesn’t change after this blog is posted. Is my ghost looking over my shoulder as I type this? Yikes.

And how do I know he’s a he? I’m not certain. It’s just always felt like a male presence to me.

As a kid he was just that, more of a feeling, as I never really saw him or any of his handiwork. By “feeling” I mean you’d just sort of know somebody was there, maybe in your room at night or following you up the basement stairs, stuff like that. On a related note, typing that just gave me a little chill.

To this day, one of my sisters is afraid to go to the back of the basement where our old coal bin used to be. She swears when she was a kid she heard a baby crying back there. I know, creepy.

Those stairs I mentioned earlier? I have never walked up them in my life without fighting the urge to run the last few steps. Going down? Nothing. Leaving? Freak Out City. I know, I know, it sounds strange, but damn it, it’s true. About halfway up I just know something’s about to grab me from behind. Others have had the same feeling.

Here’s an incident from my youth that my family remembers clearly. It was Christmas morning, and my sisters and I had awakened pre-dawn to open our presents. My older cousin John lived across the street with his parents and twin sisters, and he was always playing tricks on me. As I was opening presents, I saw something out of the corner of my eye. Our front door had a little diamond shaped window on it, and I saw a face pressed against that window, looking down at me from about 20-feet away. I laughed, certain that it was John coming over to see our presents. I jumped up and went to the door, opened it, and nobody was there. Still laughing, I ran across the street in the snow thinking he was messing with us. I went in the front door and asked where John had gone, only to told he was still in bed. I ran to his room and sure enough, he was sleeping. Even then I thought he had run home and was pretending to sleep, until I went back outside and saw just one set of tracks in the snow, mine, leading from our house to theirs.

As I write this I can still see that face, sort of pressed and distorted against the window pane, looking down at me.

Living here in my early 20’s I had several weird incidents that some of my friends witnessed. Things like coming home late at night and finding the stereo on, things disappearing, hell, one night I came home in the wee hours of the morning to find an old porkpie hat sitting smack dab in the center of my living room floor. Dead serious. That was a tad unsettling.

Stuff always happens between 3:03 and 3:23 AM. The Sparky episode the other night? 3:17. Just throwin’ that little fact out there. Also, virtually every single night I’ve lived here I wake up in the middle of the night, glance at the clock, and see that it’s somewhere between 3:03 and 3:23.

Always.

One night back in the 90s my wife and I were awakened by a loud smack on the front door. It sounded as if somebody just hit the wooden door with the palm of their hand really hard. I ran to the door, opened it, and saw nothing. The eerie thing was that the storm door, between the front door and the outside, was locked. Now I’m no genius, but it was obvious the door had been hit from the . . . inside.

On another occasion we were awakened by an ungodly white, bright light shining through our bedroom window. It literally lit up the whole room with this unnatural, humming light. It was as if a UFO had landed right outside the house. We both sat up, and in an instant it went off as if someone had flipped a switch. Again, I went out to investigate. Nothing but crickets chirping.

Note: If you know my second wife you know she’s not prone to histrionics. Ask her about this. It still gives her the heebies to this day.

One of the first things I noticed after moving back in last January was the pictures. As they had in the past, they were moving during the night. Nothing major, they’d just be moved towards the edge of an endtable, maybe occasionally turned backwards. Not every night, maybe once or twice a month. This was so commonplace in the past I’d just straighten them out without giving it a second thought, and that’s what I began doing again. Never gave it a thought, I just sort of fell back into that practice. Nothing is ever broken, it even seems like my ghost takes special care not to do any damage. Thanks ghost!

A couple weeks after I moved back in, I was awakened (a little after 3:00 AM, naturally) by voices that sounded like they were just outside my bedroom window. Remember this was pre-Sparky. It sounded as if a conversation was taking place and I couldn’t make out words, just sort of low mumbles, almost childlike, unearthly in a way. Also, it was two distinct voices, one higher than the other. At first I  thought, OK, somebody is at my sister’s house next door, talking in the driveway. I got up and looked out the window. Nothing. The porch light was on next door so I could see everything, except right under my window which made me a little uneasy. With that in mind I went outside to have a look-see. Everything was normal, or so it seemed. I convinced myself that, hell, maybe it was my sister’s cats, I know cats can make some weird noises at times . . . ah, who am I kidding? No way it was cats.

The next night it happened again. Same time. A low mumbling, sounding like a conversation between irritated elves or something. For some reason this made me mad, and in a very loud voice I said, “HEY! That’s enough! I need to get some sleep!”

Mumbles?

Now you really think I’m nuts, but as odd as it sounds that was the last I heard from the Irritated Mumbling Elf Dudes.

My old dog Poe was here in the 90s and he would sometimes appear to be watching something float through the room. Now Sparky does the same thing. He’ll be on the couch, slowly raise his head, and apparently watch something go slowly across the room. Every once in a while this will be accompanied by a low growl. He doesn’t seem scared or bothered by this, but then again Sparky scoffs at fear, laughs in the face of danger, abhors chickens (and I mean the chicken part literally). Hell, Satan could appear in the living room and Spark would go straight for his throat, then rip off the horns and use them as a chew toy.

So yeah, I have a ghost, or something, in my house. As I said, he seems more ornery than anything, just messin’ with me every now and then. As a matter of fact, I’ve sort of taken a liking to him. Sparky wasn’t happy with the doorknob rattling high jinks the other night but it’s sort of comforting to know he’s on high alert, looking out for me.

So, until I see glowing eyeballs in the closet or hear a blood-curdling death scream in the middle of the night I can live with it. Like I said, he’s been a harmless ghost.

So far.

J-u-s-t a little chilling.

I’m dyin’ over here.

ghost

Someone in the Backseat

Posted: October 30, 2015 in Fears, Mystery
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I’ve never been more scared than I was that night.HoodedFigure_zps55364230

I’d been out with a girl I was dating from Bainbridge. I left her place around 1:00 AM, and as I drove east by Jones Levee Road something made me look out the window to my right. I immediately looked back ahead, but I’d seen something out of the corner of my eye.

Somebody was sitting in my backseat.

Yep, as I’d glanced out the passenger side window I distinctly saw somebody out of the corner of my eye, silently sitting there.

It’s sort of a primal fear, isn’t it? Somebody behind you?

He must have snuck into my car when I was at my girlfriend’s house.

Was it a former boyfriend of hers? A former flame of mine? Random mugger? Serial killer? The Grim Reaper?

Whoever it was, sitting silently there in the backseat, surely had evil intentions.

I cautiously took a peek in my rearview mirror, hoping to do so without letting my unwanted guest know I was suspicious. Hell, maybe my eyes had played a trick on me.

No such luck. There, just barely, I could see a shoulder and a part of a hoodie. Where the face should be was shrouded in darkness.

The radio was off. I strained to hear breathing, anything, from the backseat.

Nothing. The only breathing I heard was mine.

My mind was reeling. What to do? Slam the brakes and hope to send the intruder through the windshield? Get home, pull in my driveway and make a run for it? Start talking, tell him I know he’s back there? Scream like a 9-year old girl at a Beiber concert?

I’m joking now but trust me, at the time I was scared out of my gourd.

I decided to drive home, hit the brakes, open the door and jump out. Only then would I turn and face my adversary.

The drive from Jones Levee to my house took only a few minutes, but it seemed like an eternity. It’s funny how time crawls when you’re expecting an axe to the back of your skull at any moment.

Somehow, as I pulled in my driveway the garage didn’t seem like a good idea. Something about a closed-in space didn’t appeal to me at that particular moment. You know, not enough room to run fight. I opted to forego the garage and park outside.

I turned onto my street, hoping desperately some of my friends had decided to pay me a late night visit. No dice. My house was dark.

Thus, my moment had come. I pulled slowly into the driveway, expecting the worst. There was no going back now. It was time to face whoever, or whatever, was behind me.

After a deep breath I hit the brakes, slammed the car into park, threw open the door, jumped out, and turned to face the terror that awaited.

Curiously, my backdoor stayed shut. Through the tinted window, though, I could see the silhouette of the hoodie wearing intruder, unmoving. It may seem odd but the fact that he was still made him immensely more frightening.

Fighting the urge to make a run for it, I jerked open the rear car door. And there, right before my eyes, was . . .

My parka.

Sitting upright on my backseat.

With its hood laying against the headrest.

Where I’d tossed it before leaving Bainbridge.

It lay there with, apparently, no intention of strangling the life out of me.

To this day I always double-check the backseat before getting into my car, especially after dark.

You know, in case a coat is lurking there.

Remembering 1967

Posted: October 29, 2015 in History
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“Is he strong?”

“Listen bud, he’s got radioactive blood.”

1967

Yep. Those aren’t trees.

Stone-Forest-in-Madagascar

That’s a lot of rivers.

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Ants, man.

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An early classic.

This Boy sheet music

Return of the Fails.

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Yeah, don’t let that cute furry little face fool you. Stoats are diabolical, man. For one thing they have a devastating effect on native bird populations, sorta like if there were a bunch of Sparkys lurking about. Last year Stoats were nominated as one of the world’s Top 100 “worst invaders.” They’re the Hitlers of the animal world, man. You know, minus the racism and stuff. More proof of the Stoats badassism is the fact that they don’t dig their own burrows, but instead use the burrows and nest chambers of the rodents they kill. That’s pure evil, bro, just killing you and taking your crib. Anywho, Stoat.

[click to enlarge]

PS- Stoats can also hypnotize rabbits. Not even kidding. Click here to watch.

Cannot. Stop. Watching.

dog

Don’t be a fool.

potaatoe

Remembering 1966

Posted: October 28, 2015 in History
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Good year for music, but a great year was on the horizon.

1966_cover

Wet Wingman.

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Things happen in trees.

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Spreading.

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Gimme some skin.

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From “School’s Out.”

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It takes a few seconds for the song to start. Patience . . .

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Telling.

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