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  • It’s Halloween…

    And boy have I dropped the ball this year. I meant to do something special like write a short ghost story just for the site, and I’ve got nothing. I’ve barely finished a crappy looking light-up ghost on the porch and still have to carve a jack o’lantern face and buy candy for tonight. We get a lot of trick-or-treaters in this neighborhood so I have to have something ready. There’s no lower form of existence than turning out porchlights and pretending you’re not home on Halloween (it’s sub-human, true fact). I’m glad to see via Blogarama that Todd DeZago is bringing the creepy with some scary stories from his readers.

    And that’s the kind of thing I prefer- it’s Halloween, I would like a ghost story, or something occult, please. Do not try to mollify me with axe murderer stories, that may be scary but it’s Not Halloween. A UFO story might do in a pinch, depending. Yesterday at PERISCOPE we were playing a few of the many old radio horror shows that are podcast for free on iTunes, go get some Karloff if you have time.
    Studiomate Terri Nelson brought up that she’s been seeing more anecdotes of a newer urban myth, the “Dark-Eyed Kids.” You can google them, they tend to be kids wearing hoodies who try to convince you to let them in the house or car and the storyteller always notices at some point that the kids have solid black eyes. Pupil and iris that is. They may not be a legend, they may just be spooky little meth-heads. But at least it’s something relatively recent. Are there any good eBay ghost stories anymore, or have the auctioneers purged all of those kind of posts? Maybe I’ll check Craigslist.

    Heck, I’ve even only been able to raise our old pal the NASA Ghost for just a few seconds, and that’s using all of the radio arrays SETI has at their disposal…


    ..fsstt….ouston, we’re looking at a–zssttt-…like our galaxy but reversed, all nega-hhssstt—time running backward, do you cop—hhshstttt…..

    Poor guys, I hope they make it back somewhere to interphase with our time and space next year. On the brighter side, I’m just about finished with a script and then I can get on these Halloween chores. Hope you don’t have to obscure your cool costume with a big coat tonight, and if you have any eerie anecdotes, the Comments section awaits.


    Comment from Zack Smith
    Time: October 31, 2007, 10:18 am

    Y’know, in terms of a good ghost story, few things beat Scott Hampton’s graphic novel THE UPTURNED STONE, in my opinion. That captures the feel of an NC fall better than anything.

    But I have a decent little story of my own, I think.

    Halloween in Raleigh was an odd thing. The hilly nature of the city meant a trip around the block was a small epic, encompasssing nearly two full miles of treckin’. My house was built on the side of a hill as it started to drop off, resulting in a street so steep that many of the well-to-do residents had tons of candy and few trick-or-treaters.

    But one year, I went to a house I had never noticed before.

    I was out with my dad and my brother. I don’t recall my costume. It might have been the year I went as a large green lobster, in a suit made from cardboard boxes. I was in elementary school, and I recall I had a quiz in Health the next day, so I was getting a lot of pressure from Dad to go home and study.

    Anyway, the hill sloped down…then went up. Good for sledding in winter, less good for trick-or-treating. I impulsively decided to go to this one house at the tip-top of the hill. A house shrouded away in the darkness.

    And that’s when I met the Man With One Ear.

    Yes, the house was inhabited by an old, old man. Memory is a liar, but mine insists that he said he was a veteran of WWI. He wore a checkered bathrobe, and tubes were coming out from under his sleeves and into his nose. He was nearly bald, with wrinkled skin hanging loosely from his face, and yellow eyes with blood-red veins. And of course, there was the side of his head…with a long, pink scar stretching down from his forehead to his neck, interrupted only by a large patch of scar tissue where his right ear should have been.

    And he invited me in.

    Dad was standing watch, so I felt safe. The Man With One Ear babbled at me for a good 10 minutes, talking of the battlefield, of the things he’d seen. He spoke of Halloweens he’d known, how he’d forgotten it was Halloween tonight. There were few lights on in his house, which seemed to be empty save for him.

    Finally, he gave me a dollar.

    I left the house. I never went back.

    The house might still be there. I’ve never checked.

    Oh, and I got a C on the Health quiz.

    Poor old man. Wish I hadn’t been so scared.

    Comment from Parker
    Time: October 31, 2007, 12:59 pm

    And where now is the Telltale Ear! Good story.

    Comment from zailo
    Time: November 1, 2007, 9:32 am

    That shopuld be obvious. It is under the floorboards listening to you. Right. Now.

    Comment from Eric
    Time: November 2, 2007, 6:34 am

    A group of my high school friends went to the Devil’s Tramping Ground out in Siler City, and attempted to spend the night there. I was supposed to go, but was unfortunately grounded for hiring a girl whom I later dated to forge my Mom’s signature on a lousy report card.

    They lasted about five hours into the night, before the high-pitched screaming started coming from the woods. They maintain that it was probably a local trying to scare them, but still thought it best to get the hell out of there.

    On a related note: The most frightening sound in the world is the late night human-like screams of a mountain lion. The most frightening sight is seeing the mountain lion after several hours of hearing it scream while on third shift at a mountaintop group home for teen-age sex offenders. The natural world scares me more sometimes than the supernatural world.