Touched By the Ethereal Plane

Life is what you make of it and sometimes you just have to jump at certain chances. This weekend was one of those chances and I could not say no. You’ll see why.

This past weekend I got to hangout with the crew of the show Paranormal State for an investigation at the renown Sorrel-Weed house down in Savannah, Georgia. That alone was a pretty cool thing to do but what happened later into the investigation, I will never forget. It is definitely something that will stay with me for life. Probably should not have power lunged in a provoking nature.

I think every haunted house that is a tourist attraction in Savannah or Charleston seems to have the same premiss; blah blah civil war hospital blah blah slave house blah blah distressed widow’s suicide…and on and on. I guess that all makes for pretty good stories but no matter how many times I visit, I never really get “spooked”. True, a number of years ago I did have an experience in Savannah but so much time has passed, the thrill is gone. I honestly can’t even remember the specifics. This time was different. This time I caught proof. I think.

Before I get into the investigation part I must say Elfie, Serge and Ryan are absolute delights. They are awesome people who truly take their passion to a high level of professionalism in this field. These are not the people who turn a blind eye to very much and it’s very refreshing to see how they rule out all possibilities before turning to the supernatural for an explanation.

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So, I could go on and on about hanging out with the chaps of Paranormal State but I am really wanting to get to the down right creepy. After a tour of a cemetery and a nice dinner downtown it was time to get locked in the Sorrel-Weed house with these guys and try to get spooked. To be honest, I wasn’t really looking forward to being locked in an old house from midnight to 3am especially with beach and beer just a short drive away. But I committed to doing this and I had to ask myself when would a person get to do this in present company? Not often.

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Inside we gathered and got a little history of the place but I was more drawn to the Robert E Lee painting. It was gigantic and probably priceless. Actually, I just wanted to see if his eyes followed me like an old Scooby Doo cartoon. He didn’t.

Soon we turned off all the lights and broke into groups. It doesn’t matter what you believe, when you can’t see in front of your face, the mind will play tricks on you. Every sound is amplified and every slight movement can be exaggerated. It’s hard to stay focused when you can’t get the movie Poltergeist out of your head.

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We broke into two groups and Serge led us down to the basement. I didn’t think of it but before you start shooting photos with blinding flashes it’s important to say “flash”. I had to apologize…a lot. All these pictures from here on were taken in total darkness. That’s important to keep in mind especially with a certain few that no one can explain.

Of course if you have read any of my older posts about being in notably “haunted” areas, I always break into a power lunge. I can’t explain why but it is a tradition and when dealing with the paranormal and superstition, it’s best not to break tradition. This may have been a maneuver that did not go over well with the permanent residences.

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What followed next, I will say, surprised me. We sat in a small group for a while down in the basement and listened to Serge talk about techniques and reasons for certain team practices. It was pretty neat but I didn’t feel out-of-place or spooked in the least. It was just a house that smelled like mildew.

Then Serge asked if I would feel comfortable sitting in the next room alone while the group left. I agreed to do that. Like I said, I wasn’t feeling weirded out or nervous so sitting in a closed room in the dark wasn’t a problem. Until…

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The first picture is a bit blurry but you can see most of the room from this angle. I was sitting on an old couch and to the right was a chimney with another empty room separated by two back sheets. On the left was another black sheet separating a small storage closet. I didn’t really know what to do because the silence was deafening, you couldn’t see a thing and I knew there was a camera with a voice recorder actively recording so for the first few minutes all I did was sit in silence. After awhile, though, I began to talk and snap pictures feeling just a tad silly. That’s when something started to happen.

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After I posed a question about our mortality and what it is like to be dead (stupid stupid question!) something rushed from the left side of me to the right, sat on the arm of the couch and it felt like an index finger and thumb squeezed my ear. It was so fast and so violent I jumped up and before I knew it I was out the door in a cold sweat. The team rushed to me and I couldn’t even explain but they saw my reaction from the cameras and knew something was happening.

The next two photos are what I captured right before I experienced…whatever that was. I didn’t see them until the next morning and it was both thrilling and unnerving. It sucks I didn’t think to look at them until then but I was so spun up I couldn’t think.

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I looked at this for hours completely dumbfounded. I must have taken thirty pictures in a totally darkened bathroom trying to recreate this photo doing everything from putting my fingers over the lens to blocking the flash. It always comes out reddish or skin toned. Also I was sitting on the couch taking pictures holding the camera at a half an arm’s length away from my body. It is impossible to get a shadow unless the flash is behind me. It’s a dark shadow that moved so fast and fucking touched me. That’s all I can possibly believe. And it’s more than a coincidence after asking such a stupid question.

The rest of the night was kind of a blur. We did EVP sessions and I took more photos but after that happened, I was a little spooked and ready to be in a hotel bed.

I will write more on this after I go through all photos and video but I needed to post this. It was a great time but I think for paranormal hunting, I will leave it to the pros and safely watch it on TV. Like right now!

See? Every time I turn the tube on Paranormal State is on! I am happy to watch it from a far.

I know there are plenty of skeptics that laugh at this and can come up with hundreds of reasons for these photos. They are not dust orbs, though. That shit happened. And I look forward to see what’s on the video. But for now, I will be doing this type of investigating.

Beer hunting!

I’ll write more on this later. Check out the Paranormal State reruns on the Bio Channel and A&E. They are a hoot. A big thanks to Elfie, Ryan and Serge. Thanks for not laughing at me when I ran out of the room like I had a rabid squirrel in my pants.

 

Scary? Meh. Creepy? You Betcha

Last night I finally pulled my head out of the books and reintroduced myself with the outside world. Not as scary as I built it up to be. Actually, seeing people going about doing their Friday night thing was a welcomed change to what sick people do any given night of the week. Man, hospitals are growing old . Anywho, I decided to go grab dinner and see a movie. But not just some random movie like the bullshit that was thrust on us this summer but a very much anticipated independently made film that has been on my “must see” list ever since it was introduced to a film fest in 2007. I know you have heard the hype about this too. Paranormal Activity.

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I don’t think I will go too far into the movie about how it came to be a nation wide blockbuster but I will say what I walked away with. This film finally accomplished what most horror movies fail to do; genuinely creep me out. I don’t believe I have had that happen to me in the theater in some time. I mean, horror directors like Zombie and Eli Roth do a great job of disturbing me through gore and violence, but they couldn’t even dream of creeping me out. They make movies for brain-dead teenagers. Paranormal Activity is a totally different bag of Swedish fish. There is thought, creativity, no CGI, brilliant acting, and a building tension that will literally have your muscles twitching  from squeezing the armrest.

As much as I loved this film it is not the scariest that I have seen. But probably the most creepy. Yes, it is a Blair Witch type genre movie and there are times when you actually believe this is not a mockumetory but the real home video. And that is the acting. If it was not for the two amazing actors, this film would fail. And in a world full of empty-headed movie viewers that have to see the monster rather that using imagination, it is a real risk to put the film in the hands of two people.

Speaking of creepy, I want to share scenes from movies that give me the creeps so you can judge where I am coming from.

The Ring:

I know that I am probably dumbing this blog down by claiming the movie The Ring to be one of the creepiest that I have seen but…I guess I am dumb. The movie as a whole was not very scary but this scene took me from expecting a “teen horror pop film” to a chill so deep I almost threw my VCR out that very night. I suppose it was because I knew nothing of it before I saw it in the theaters.

Jaws:

This is a scary movie. Quite possibly the scariest that I have ever seen and it hits all points of fear: scared of the unknown, being eaten alive, alien enviroment, dark places, and of course the helplessness. The particular scene that got me the worst was when Alex Kittner was attacked and everyone just stood there in a panic on the beach. The only view we had of the shark was the massive rollover of the dorsal and pectoral fin giving us a pretty good idea how large this fish was. Fucking enormous. I can still hear that poor kid coughing underwater as he was pulled down and devoured.

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The Haunted(1991):

This made for TV movie has a definite WE or Lifetime feel to it but when I saw it at 12 years old back in the nineties, I think my bedroom lights were on for the rest of the year. Now almost 20 years later I can still see why. It has a genuine creepiness through simple bumps and whispers. When you take a normal family in a suburb that experience unexplainable events that progress to evil acts in the safety of their own home, you just can’t help but think of that in bed at midnight.

The Exorcism of Emily Rose:

Again, not a very scary film but the creeps are all over this. I don’t know if she was possessed or not but the scene of her contorted on the floor staring at her boyfriend as he slept made my feet go cold. There is nothing more disturbing than having someone stare at you in your most vulnerable state.

Learn from my mistakes! The night I saw this with my ex-girlfriend we went to bed and she was pretty riled up from the film. A few hours later I woke up to use the restroom and came back to bed. For some reason it seemed like a good idea to “act out” the same scene when Emily was contorted and lying on the floor, staring right at her. I coughed a few times to wake her and when she came to and realized I wasn’t beside her she looked around the room and called for me. She sat up and looked right at me being a total asshole on the floor and holy shit! She freaked out. There was screaming and tears. I didn’t think it was that scary. Makes you wonder why we didn’t last, huh?

So to recap, go see Paranormal Activity. But remember, the fear doesn’t come in the theater quite like it does at 2am from the safety of your own bed. Man, now that is brilliant film making.

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