I’ve been studying the fascinating, and sometimes hair-raising phenomena of ghosts for over twenty years. I’ve also read multiple books on the subject, diligently watched shows such as Ghost Hunters, and have even visited supposedly haunted sites. Do you know something? I think I’m the last man in the entire world who hasn’t seen a ghost.
What actually is a ghost? There are so many names associated with this ethereal and elusive denizen of the darkest nights. I’ve heard them called, spirits, phantoms, appearances, specters, ghouls, and visions. I have just two questions. Where the heck are all the ghosts, and why are they all hiding from me? I looked up the definition of a ghost, and it said, “A ghost is the spirit of a deceased person, or animal that can appear in visible form or as a manifestation to the living.”
I just realized that description said animal? All I need right now are animal ghosts. I’m already starting to get a little scared. Does this mean, old lady Thompson’s diabolical feline, Muffin, which made my life miserable for ten years, could come back from the after-life and haunt me?
Have any of you watched a reality television show called “Ghost Hunters?” It’s about two paranormal investigators named Jason and Grant who look into the possible haunting of various buildings, houses, cemeteries, and insane asylums, by the spirits of the deceased. I heard they actually started out investigating the paranormal at night, while working day jobs as plumbers for Roto-Rooter. I wonder how they got started in their ghostly investigations. Were they working in someone’s house, cleaning clogged and messy drains when Grant in a moment of fear and surprise exclaimed, “Jason, quick come here. I think I saw something in the toilet!”
Have any of you ever seen a ghost on this show? Wouldn’t you just once like to see a cameraman catch a crystal-clear image of an overweight man with thick and wavy black hair, a gaudily sequined, white and pink body suit, swiveling hips, and a slightly curled-up lip? Then you could yell to your spouse, “Honey, quick come here, and see this. Thank God, after all these years, I finally know for sure. It’s sad, but true. The King is really dead.”
There was also a sequel to Jason and Grant’s show called, “Ghost Hunters Academy,” where young and eager students, are schooled in the most modern techniques in the hunt for elusive ghosts, apparitions, and poltergeists. Wow, I’ll bet those classes were interesting. I can hear the instructor now. “Okay class; please repeat after me. I… think… I… saw… something. What … was… that? Did… you… see… something?”
I was watching a movie the other day about ghosts. It was called “The Sixth Sense.” It starred Bruce Willis and a boy named Haley Joel Osment. You’ve probably heard one of the famous lines from this movie when the young, tormented boy says, “I see dead people. And they don’t know they’re dead.” Well, why don’t you tell them? Seems pretty simple. Just walk up to them and say, “Excuse me sir, but I think that maybe you should look in a mirror. You’re not just having a bad hair day. Half your head is gone for crying out loud. Now listen to me very carefully. Go into the light. Go into the light.”
As a kid, I remember how on camping trips, the adults would tell ghost stories as we all sat around a roaring camp fire. What made it so scary was, there was only the flickering flames to fend off an impenetrable darkness that was surely filled with thousands of terrifying and hideous ghosts, who’s only purpose was – to get you! What made things worse is that to protect yourself from unknown horrors, mere feet from your exposed back, you would sit so close to the fire, your eyebrows would start to singe. The bad thing is, if you ever did catch on fire, you didn’t stand a chance. It’s pretty hard to escape the notice of insidious spirits, as you run screaming through the darkened forest with your clothes on fire.
There is one old series about ghosts that I loved to watch, and no, it’s not because the lead character was hot. It was called the “Ghost Whisperer,” and still can be seen on reruns. It’s about a woman who has the ability to see the dearly departed. On every show, she convinces a lost spirit to leave this world, and find eternal peace. It seems, if people die with unfinished business, they will often hang around, haunt people, and make every waking moment of their lives a living hell. It’s kind of like my in-laws, except they’re still alive. At the end of every show, she somehow convinces the ghost to go into the light, and move on to a better place.
Now that I’ve had time to think about it, I may have once seen a ghost. A few years ago, our neighbor, Mister McDougal passed away. A few weeks after his funeral, I was in my backyard trimming some hedges, when I saw a figure standing on the edge of my former neighbor’s lawn. The sun was in my eyes, and he was far away, but I swear he looked exactly like old man McDougal. He seemed to be staring at me intently, as he pointed at the hedge trimmer in my hands. It was only then that I realized, I had borrowed the hedge trimmer from the late Mister McDougal nearly two years ago. See what I mean about unfinished business? As the hair began to stand up on the back of my neck, I managed to utter, “Okay, Mister M. I’m returning the hedge trimmer right… now. If you give me a minute, I’ll wheel over the lawnmower and the power washer, and carry over your tools, rake, garden implements, and six-foot ladder, to your wife, Myra. I’m very, very sorry. Now, please, listen to me carefully. Go into the light. Go into the light.” I’m beginning to enjoy saying that.
Ghosts can be frightening, and extremely scary. This is especially true for young and innocent boys with a demonic older brother, who would wear white bed sheets, as he tapped on bedroom windows at three in the morning. “Hey Mike. Don’t think I forgot about that!”
Before I go, I was wondering if I’m the only one who has experienced this. Does your wife, spouse, partner, or significant other, ever threaten to come back from the dead and haunt you? The other day I was driving with my wife in the seat next to me. I have to admit, I may have been exceeding the speed limit by a few miles-per-hour. As I was passing a slow-moving eighteen-wheeler, she turned to me and sternly said, “I swear, if we have an accident and I die, I’m going to come back and haunt you.”
Pretty scary stuff, huh guys? This hasn’t been the first time she’s made this threat. She once made a long list of all the women, I could never marry, if she were to unfortunately leave this world before me. She made it perfectly clear that my marriage to any of these women, would result in a lifetime of the most terrifying and relentless haunting in the history of mankind. At the top of the list was the woman who works at the hardware store. She’s the one who, whenever I go in for supplies, always asks about my plumbing, and whether I have all the right tools. I didn’t have the courage to tell my wife that she’s already haunting me. I figure, what are a few more years.