I have been in the field of paranormal research a little over ten years now. I have seen people come and go. I have seen ideas, theories and testing come and go. I have also seen the image of paranormal research simply go.
Starting out in the field it was a very small community. The internet was growing quickly. I recall the moment I was able to get rid of my dial up and got “high speed” internet service. As people were able to upgrade computer and connections researchers started building websites that showcased their work, theories and ideas. Back then, teams were not selling anything and honestly, it was taboo to even mention selling anything on a website. There were teams that tried to sell t-shirts and they would be shunned, mainly because this field was for research, not making a buck. There were teams back then, but there were no titles or an “image” to be found. Honestly, it was a community of people, coming together asking questions and allowing their evidence to get reviewed. The term “debunk” was in it’s infant stage, today, it’s a common word that even elementary school children use. Back in the day, if someone posted something for review, they actually wanted it to be explained away, before they made a fool out of themselves by posting it on the internet. Yes, you read that right. Researchers then actually cared what their peers thought of potential evidence. Today, not so much. In fact, it’s the opposite. Boy oh boy, do I miss those days of paranormal research.
Today, searching the net for a paranormal research team can be a daunting task. Not many are actually “paranormal researchers”, they have adopted the title of “Ghost Hunter” and the majority of them claim to be some kind of expert or leader of some sort. As people may need help with their unusual problems, I can only imagine the stress they deal with as they pick a team to come and investigate their homes and private properties. What they have to filter through is a lot of fluff, advertisements and narcissistic claims made by the team. They have to filter through team bio’s complete with semi-professional team “photos” and of course the drawn out history of why each member is involved with the paranormal. None of those things are important, but it seems to be the new thing as team are selling their image, not their skills.
I won’t get into the reasoning as to why I think Paranormal based TV shows are literally killing the field of parapsychology, as most of you are already aware of where I stand on that issue. But the lack of information, testing, ideas and theories have seemed to be neglected. To me, and many veteran researchers it takes more than a “cool image” to make a team reputable and rational, otherwise just good researchers. The word research has been replaced with “hunt”. Do people really want teams of people in matching t-shirts to come to their personal property and “hunt” for things that go bump in the night? Or, am I so crazy to think that these people actually want some answers, explanations and rational reasoning behind their unexplainable moments. The general public that watches these TV shows are entirely educated as today’s ghost hunter. They do not need any additional knowledge outside of what they have seen on TV. Why? Today’s ghost hunters are just mimicking what they see on TV, they do not have any upper hands or extended knowledge of paranormal research. Not to mention, the mass majority of teams today will enter these properties already assuming the place is haunted. Wishful thinking, from a hunter. Not a rational view from a researcher.
Back in the day, it was word of mouth as to how investigations were researched. As more households jumped on the world wide web finding help became easier for people. They could just send photos and explain unnatural occurrences via email. Today, there are thousands upon thousands of “ghost hunters” claiming to be paranormal researchers on the internet. Very few have any information posted for public view. Most of these teams treat their personal websites as some sort of infomercial as they try their hardest to get a potential clients attention. They boast and brag about going to haunted locations as seen on TV, as if that makes them bolder, braver and more experienced than the next team. These teams proudly sell items from t-shirts to bobble head dolls, all to which are to help them pay for their “expenses”.
Expenses in the field are limited and the general public should never donate or pay a dime for services. EVER.
What are these teams using the money on? There are several things they use the money on. Here are a few…
Toys- Somewhere people have confused technology with science. In reality, a team can base a very nice and scientific based investigation with nothing more than a pen, paper, flashlight and some sort of recording device, audio or video. Meters, thermal imaging and laser pointing temperature gauges are used to make a team appear to be scientific, in fact it’s just a bunch of people playing with overpriced electronic gadgets that make them look as if they are important. Technology and gadgets are not scientific. These people have not been properly trained on the thermal imaging camera they purchased used on Ebay. Does the item work properly is a whole other question. Nobody should ever donate money for teams to get toys for ghost hunting. If you are that free with your money, I am sure there are deer hunters, scuba divers and even treasure hunters that could use a nice donation. Besides, what they are hunting for has already been proven to be real… ghosts have not according to science. The real scientific world does not approve of the tools they use. Figure that one out. If a team needs to earn money for their “Paranormal Princess Lifestyle”.. they should raise it themselves with public events. But, remember public events are for fun and entertainment, just roll with it.
Travel- paranormal research is not a paid profession. A person can make some money, but it’s not a lot. If a team of fifteen people want to go to a place they seen on TV and pay hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars to have the place for a night, why would you pay for their vacation? Most researchers pay out of pocket for any travel destinations, especially if it is one that the team is just going to go have a good time at. How I can prove they are there on a paranormal hiatus is this way. Visit their site. See how they market that they are going. Check back and see if they actually did any “research” at the location. Chances are, they will have photos of dust bunnies, maybe some purported EVP’s they collected while they took the guided tour with about twenty other people. If a team does not have gas money to arrive to your location, please dis-invite them. The only thing a team should ever ask for is maybe use of the restroom and a glass of water.
Webspace- It is not the general public’s problem nor should they give a damn about paying for some ghost hunting teams website. If the team eliminated the bells and whistles, they could manage, operate and maintain a website for less than $100 a year. The team members should pay for this, not the general public. They will not go away if their site goes down. They will be forced to simplify and by the grace of God use the space to showcase what they do as researchers, not rock stars. Not to mention the free resources available on the internet, such as youtube and blogs.
Their Time- Ghost hunting is a hobby. NOT a career. Teams that charge for their time are nothing more than scam artists. They should be reported to the police and any other authority that will listen. It is a scam, I repeat. A SCAM. Their time is valuable, to them and nobody else in this field. They should have a day job or other means of income, there is no local experts worthy of collecting money for their services involving any type of ghost hunt or investigation. I can not stress this enough. If a team asks you for money, please let someone know so they can be turned in. If they ask for money to “Clear/rid your property of ghosts” please notify any other team in your area asap to get second opinion, even a third. do not pay anything until you have spoken with other teams in your area about the situation.
*** I can not stress enough that ghost hunting/paranormal investigations is not a paid service. Please report anyone to the authorities or heck, let me know. Just let people know. There are so many scam artists claiming to be ghost hunters these days. People need to be aware.
I’m not going to say that my way is the right way. There are good teams out there. There are good investigators out there, not all of them have commercials on the internet to help them look more official. Google the team leaders names and see if they are actually linked up with any type of paranormal research or if they just popped up in the past year and are all of a sudden claiming to be an experienced researcher.
I did a quick search on Youtube and found a great example of how teams are advertising their services. If you know me and this is your team, I do apologize in advance. But, I am not afraid to say that this is a very tacky and non impressive way to make you and your team look professional. What are you selling? The video is more scary and eerie than the unexplainable events taking place in peoples houses.
Here is the video advertisement for this particular team.
If people were not spooked before, I’m sure they are thinking they have some kind of demonic boogie man in their basement after watching this video. Marketing on peoples fears is the thing with today’s teams, nothing more. They will scare you to have a place to play. They will scare you so they can make a buck off of you. They will scare you and make you believe, what they want you to believe.
Paranormal research is not, nor should it ever be about marketing, commercialism and enterprise.
Agents, head shots and biographies- As you search the internet. See who has an agent, management service, head shots, biography that is similar to an actors. Are these people really doing research or are they just trying to make a name for themselves to be some type of celebrity?
That is the current state of the paranormal field to date. It’s no longer about research to most, it’s about recognition, competition and to see who can get on TV and make “big bucks” so they can live their dreams of overreacting on TV in spooky situations. If you are in need of a reputable paranormal research to help you make sense of the paranormal claims at your property please be careful as to who you have into your property. Ask for references from businesses that have not made money from the teams presence at the location. Google the leaders name, see how much they are really respected in the field. What they have written, research and who even knows who the heck they are. If you, the reader ever need a list of educated paranormal researchers to contact for referrals, contact me I can get you in touch with those that have earned a name for themselves with their research efforts and progress they have made in the field of parapsychology.
I am looking forward to your feedback.
It’s okay to admit that you watch paranormal TV shows. TAPS-Ghost Hunters is the longest running paranormal based TV show to date. They started out as plumbers and moved on to be the worlds most famous ghost hunters. Many teams across the nation praised them for bringing paranormal research/ghost hunting to the mainstream. Many years later, those same people are screaming to make them stop. The show started out as a innocent peek into the then very private and low key field of paranormal research. Now it’s big business and it’s no longer about the ghosts… well, maybe the ghost of Benjamin Franklin. When I write this blog, I can’t help but sing a familiar song titled “Mo money, mo problems” by Notorius BIG . I provided the link, just for fun.
TAPS- Jason and Grant, the super hero’s of the supernatural. They are no longer mere plumbers, they are business men. They own, produce and manage an empire. The TAPS empire. From big dollar property , merchandise, magazines, to giant events. TAPS is living large these days, thanks to their fans of course. On top of filming for the weekly TV show on Syfy, Ghost Hunters are now the poster children according to some for literally “selling out”. The majority of people that watch the shows are fans, as for TAPS fellow paranormal researchers watching, not so much.
Lately, the TAPS empire has been under the microscope by their peers. What used to be the occasional “oh my that’s a paranormal” moment, has turned into a weekly cat and mouse chase of let’s see what they can get on film this week. From jacket tugging to sliding pieces of furniture, the past two seasons have been chocked full of ghostly phenomenon, too good to be true. Once self proclaimed “debunkers” are now getting debunked. Not only by fellow paranormal researchers but by regular people that have a great deal of common sense and a keen eye for too good to be true moments. Perhaps TAPS has taught their viewers well? The TAPS scrutiny hit hard during the Halloween live episode where Grant, reported to have his jacket “tugged” by a ghost. Perhaps it would have been more convincing if the “ghost” tugged just once, but it was actually tugged 3 times. Overkill is never good for live TV. Since then, the pressure is on. The real paranormal community is watching like a hawk. The heat may be on for the TAPS crew to get more evidence, perhaps that is why they are getting miraculous events, caught on tape each week. Remember, it is a business.
I will provide a few links for you to see how the general population is getting the word out about rumors of staging crews and rigged evidence. Want more? Visit YouTube, there is a plethora of video to help you make up your mind, or not.
I am not setting out to change the way people think about a scripted reality based TV show on the Science FictionNetwork, so don’t get too upset with me. But I do want to share what some are calling breaking news in the paranormal field concerning TAPS. Oh and to remind you that TAPS, Syfy and Pilgrim films are to offer a press release to clear their tainted image this week.
The not so “breaking news”- Many remember Donna Lacroix from the first few seasons of Ghost Hunters and perhaps, Ghost Hunters International. She was involved with the starting of the show, before it became big business.
This week, Donna spoke about her time on the set of Ghost Hunters as a cast member live on the internet radio show titled GhostDiva-Live. The GhostDivas show is a fun and unique broadcast. It comes on late and is targeted towards adults. The show basis is similar to the popular TV & Radio show titled “Whatever Martha” The women sit and talk about what is on TV, have guests and poke and prod at the paranormal field, just for laughs. Donna was a guest on this show this past week and she told the hosts that they can ask anything, from plastic surgery to rumors of TAPS faking evidence. She agreed.
The show has now hit the paranormal and even skeptic community like a tornado. Although, Donna’s intentions were just to speak her mind. The possibility of the TV show staging evidence has become focus. On several sites Jason Hawes of TAPS have made statements concerning Donna’s interview. He also stated that Pilgrim Films and SyFy network are preparing a press release over the show. I find it odd that they are taking this internet radio show so serious. Was Donna telling the truth enough to make the TAPS empire nervous? Many people feel that yes, it was enough to tarnish their image. Donna has made many statements that all she wanted to do was to talk about it. She was also aware that it would ruffle some feathers in the community, but she had no idea that it would circulate around the internet as it did in less than 72 hours. I do have to ask why TAPS, Pilgrim Films and even the SyFy network would take her statements so serious to create a press release? The truth is, GhostDivas LIVE is a small but very popular (for like minds) type of radio show, based in Oklahoma, and broadcast by the Supernatural Radio Network, it’s not a huge radio show by any means.
There are message boards, forums, youtube videos, tweets, Facebook updates, myspace blogs, standard blogs and beyond in an uproar about this show. Many people have been sitting back waiting on the smoking gun to officially shut the TAPS empire down. This show was not the smoking gun, it may lead to it yes, but it is not. The radio interview was to allow Donna to speak her mind and for people to ask questions about the production. To most, Donna is a hero for speaking out, while to a small few, they were disappointed that it was not the bomb they had been wishing for. No matter what your opinion is about TV’s TAPS/Ghost Hunters, the radio interview offers an entirely different outlook when it comes to the super hero status that is seen on TV.
No matter what you might think about the TAPS/Ghost Hunters TV show you must remember that the show was created for entertainment purposes only. Why would TAPS be the only “real” TV show on a network that has nothing other than Science Fiction based programming is a great question to ask yourself. If you are a fan of this show that is fine, but keep in mind that it is for entertainment and quite possibly fiction wrapped in a cozy “reality based” blanket.
I will be awaiting patiently the press release from the Syfy network, TAPS and Pilgrim Films. Nobody is attempting to change anyone’s mind, but I do ask that you see both sides of every story from the youtube videos to net radio shows. Do not believe everything you see on TV and continue to think critically when it comes to those claiming to have evidence of the afterlife. In my 11 years of research, I have yet to have a ghost perform for me on camera. Now, I am asking myself, maybe it’s because I’m not wearing a TAPS official and certified t-shirt?
Growing up, I have always heard that Frontier City was really haunted, not just at Halloween. Outside of being one of the best playgrounds in Oklahoma, for all ages. I have heard that when the lights go down and the people and staff clear out the park seems to take on a life of it’s own. Over the past eleven years, I have received a handful of emails stating “come and investigate Frontier City, it’s really haunted!” Well, I finally took it serious. While visiting one of Oklahoma’s most popular adventure destinations with my family a few weeks ago, I decided to ask around to see if the legends were true. The staff mentioned several places of interest to us. From the old Nightmare ride to the Wildcat Roller coaster. While combing through the historical archives, we found not much of anything to validate the spooky tales and locations we were directed too, but I did notice that some aspects of Frontier City has an untraceable background as some of the attractions were moved from other locations across the nation. As a researcher, It is helpful to a case when there are unfortunate mishaps to blame, but we only found a couple instances as to why the legends are born in the first place. The park does hold secrets, I will not deny that.
We spoke with the Marketing Director of Frontier City and arranged for us to come out and conduct an investigation of the entire park. We were able to talk with staff members and to get their stories as to what locations spooked them out the most and where the ” haunted places” were. After our interviews, the entire GHOULI team and EerieOK team split up, rules and maps in hands and ventured out on our own to see if we could witness any of the strange events taking place at Frontier City.
It was a nice cool evening, a full moon supplied us with light as we ventured around the park. I will admit, we all made several mentions of this particular investigation, being one those based off the Scooby Doo cartoon. All we were missing was old man Smithers, menaced property owner that was doing nothing but trying to hide his stock pile of fools gold. This was probably the first investigation where I noticed both teams sporting a child like grin the entire time. No matter how hard we tried, even as adults, Frontier City has a magic of it’s own. It’s just one of those places you want to be, day or night, haunted or not.
The Frontier City Staff was more than helpful as they led us around to forgotten places within the park and the “hot spots” pointed out by previous teams and staff members. Old childhood memories flooded in as we seen artifacts from yesteryear hidden and stored away. The rumors of ghosts and strange events focused on several rides and attractions. The GHOULI and EerieOK team had focus on “energy” during this investigation. The theory that stored energy of the past can generate images, sensations, feelings and even anxiety that leaks into today’s atmosphere, causing the haunting. What better place to test the “energy theory” than the highly active theme park!
Our goal was to get residual accounts of paranormal phenomenon. We desired to get ghostly thrill ride screams, children’s laughter and the occasional child crying, because he did not get cotton candy of course. All teams were armed with tools such as flashlights, thermometers, walkie talkies, video cameras, digital cameras, audio equipment and several types of meters. Each team rotated around the park to different hot spots and to locations where we found historical significance. We would meet up in between rounds to discuss any happenings or events that needed further investigating. As the evening went on, we had discovered we covered the entire park as well as we could. Investigations are not about camping out, we all felt that our time there was plenty to obtain what we wished to collect.
The evening grew colder and it was getting late. Only a handful of us had something “strange” take place and in some locations, it was unanimous as to where. A few days later, audio samples were being turned in. To our surprise, we were able to collect a handful of interesting EVP’s in some areas of the park. Were they the energy based thrill ride voices that we were after? Not really. The video below will highlight some of our findings from the park. The audio clips that were taken, compared and scrutinized by everyone from both teams. Are they ghosts? We are not sure, but they are unexplainable voices, caught on tape from the locations that we all had previously agreed to hold that “I was not alone in there” factor.
Our findings were a big surprise to us. None of us really made contact with anything that seemed to be menacing or angry of our presence as rumored. The hot spots deemed by another local team, well, we found our results to not collaborate entirely with their findings. Random? Perhaps. Hard core haunted? Not really, but just enough to add a little spice to the parks reputation of thrilling adventures. I will not report of the deadly mishaps we discovered regarding this parks past mainly out of respect for the families. But also, we will keep our historical findings to ourselves as we monitor other teams progress. Will they discover what we discovered? We will monitor the parks historical haunting’s from afar and see who is actually doing their homework and offering their findings for comparative data research.
Just this past weekend, I ventured to Frontier City with my friends and family to enjoy Fright Fest. This is one of our families past times and we never miss a year. Frontier City offers a fantastic time for families during the Halloween Season. We headed out to experience this years haunted house theme, Rotsville, Mental Asylum and to ride some rides and enjoy the park as it is decorated to the max for the Halloween season. As we were getting in line to grab our tickets to the haunted house, we noticed a paranormal team had what appeared to be a booth set up. We ventured over to see what was going on.
The local team MAPS had one of their ghost hunting fleet cars on display, surrounded by rope light. They had a tent and a glass casing full of ghost hunting tools and gadgets. They also had a collection of books that featured the author Hans Holzer on display. They had light up t-shirts for sale for $40 as well. The shirts were sound activated and perfect for some underground rave trance party. Walking up to the team, I noticed they utilized the infamous K2 Meters. I had to ask, “Does your team use these?” the guy in charge proudly answered “Yes, we do“. I challenged him, asking him all kinds of questions about the meter. That particular meter is public enemy #1 in the paranormal field. It was introduced on a popular TV show and has been tossed aside by legitimate researchers across the nation. People are no longer utilizing the meters, mainly because of outside interference. It’s been documented and tested that even cell phone receptions from up to a mile away can cause the meter to fluctuate, confusing uneducated ghost hunters into assuming it’s some kind of ghostly activity. We didn’t spend a lot of time with them at that moment, as we had to grab our tickets for the haunted house. After grabbing our tickets and some roasted corn, we sat and discussed the paranormal team we had just talked with. We finally realized that it was the team that investigated the park over a year ago. We decided to go back and to talk to them, in hopes of possibly validating some of the EVP’s we obtained during our investigation. I approached a woman in a MAPS t-shirt and asked her if they were able to obtain any evidence of the parks ghostly reputation. She stated that they had obtained an EVP in the Gun Show area of the park. I asked if I could hear it, or if it was on the Internet anywhere. I stated to her that I would like to compare the voice to voices we collected during our investigation. To my surprise, she told me that I needed to attend the 10pm Gun Show to hear the EVP as it’s not going to be offered anywhere else. I mentioned that if we could get out of the Haunted house in time, we would venture over, but in case we missed it, if it was possible for us to hear the EVP anywhere. She stepped back and had the lead of the team over to speak with me. I found this to be odd. Generally, when a team has placed themselves in the public for display, they are more than willing to answer questions. As the leader came over, I started to ask why their evidence was not open for peer review or collaborative research. All he told me was “It’s our choice not to”. As a researcher, it is imperative, especially in locations investigated by two separate teams to share evidence. It helps build a stronger case for both teams and the location. It’s also a good thing to have back up, when it comes to making claims as to proof of the afterlife. I started to ask many questions as to this teams protocol, they have the word “Science” in their title and I ask what was their scientific approach. They stated to me “To collect evidence in one place, go back and collect it again, in the same place, from the same entity”. This is the standard scientific protocol of most teams, but most teams realize it is almost impossible to replicate. I ask the team leader if the EVP they are playing during the gun show had been scrutinized under their protocol, he said “no, it has not”. He also explained to me that they do research for their own personal use. The general public and other teams are not to be privileged to their findings. I asked them why they were advertising at the park, with their cars, booth and t-shirts, I was told that they were invited by the park. Well, that’s fine and dandy, but I didn’t understand the privacy factor they gave me, and the blatant advertising they were displaying. Back to the evidence. I explained my questions on several occasions. It seemed to make them uncomfortable that I was asking them about their experiences at the park. As a researcher, I just wanted some validation in the audio samples we obtained. They refused to talk more about it and encouraged us to join them at the Gun Fight at 10pm to hear the mysterious EVP. Click here to watch the MAPS video posted for the public on their myspace page. (Scientific indeeed!)
10 o’clock arrived and we made a mad dash to the Gun Show. The show was fantastic, with a great Halloween story line, lots of action, fire and cool stunts. After the show, one of the actors invited everyone to sit down and wait for a moment. He stated to the crowd that he was a member of the MAPS team and that they conduct investigations all over. He stated “We are just like TAPS on TV” several times in his speech. He stated to the crowd that the Gun Show set was a “paranormal hot spot” and they have obtained an EVP to share with the crowd. Everyone confusingly sat patiently to listen. The audio clip they had prepared was not working for some reason. The actor continued to talk about the MAPS team and how they were just like TAPS from TV. Eventually, the sound person declared that the EVP was not going to play and the EVP can be heard on the website. For a group of scientists, I found this to be unacceptable. I remembered, that I was told (many times) that they do not put anything on the website for the public and never will, but anyway, the crowd filtered out quickly to get that last ride in before the park closed. We stood at the entrance to listen to what the public was saying about the ghostly claims made by this actor/ghost hunter. What were they saying? Nothing, nothing at all.
My previous blog was about Ghost Hunting teams and the Halloween season. The general public does brush off our research as just another Halloween trick. Comparing oneself to a popular TV show on the Science Fiction channel never is a good thing either. Once pumpkins and zombies enter the picture, the concept of being “serious researchers, just like on TV” goes right out the window, now on to that next caramel apple and roller coaster!
Frontier City is a magical place for Oklahomans. Is it haunted? We will leave that up to you. But for the many late night staff members, there is no question to what they have witnessed. It was real to them. Our small pieces of evidence just added to the case and to a very fun investigation. It was our privilege to be able to investigate such a legendary location in the state of Oklahoma. Is Frontier City Haunted? We will leave that up to you as you venture out this Halloween for your thrills and chills of the season. No matter what you believe, we invite you to take a second look the next time you are at Frontier City… Go ahead and peek into the dark corners of the park and quietly tell your children why the park never closes. This time of year it is fantastic to enjoy ghostly tales from our great state, but remember, the more stories you tell, the Halloween memories grow stronger.
Paranormal Eyes- Tonya Hacker
Fall is here and it’s here with a vengeance. Great weather has finally came our way in the great state of Oklahoma. Fall and the cooler weather means one thing.. Halloween!!
Halloween is a busy time of year for paranormal researchers. There are a lot of events taking place. Tours and ghostly walks are popping up every time we open the newspaper or a local magazine. Halloween is almost here! For some teams, Halloween is busy mainly because they feel it’s an opportunity to “get their names out there” to the general public while others are attending speaking engagements, sharing their ghostly tales from across the state.
No matter what kind of team it is, it is still a very busy season.
The days of getting on the local news broadcast, attempting to convince the general public that what we do is “scientific” and “legitimate” are over (for me & my team). Why? Because it’s HALLOWEEN! Some teams may not understand this, but Halloween is not the best time of the year to “get their names out there” as some hard core scientific research group. No matter how hard they try, the local news stations will always play the spooky music as an intro, or say “who ya gonna call” or the best of them all, having a snickering news anchor follow up your “scientific” investigation footage with a comment like “I bet she DOES see dead people”. There is a trick to Halloween media, it’s still ignored by thousands of teams across the nation that are oh so serious with what they do. What is the trick? Have fun! It’s Halloween! Nobody is going to take you serious this time of year, people should just stop trying. Teams that do fun, adventurous segments, those are the teams remembered. The smiles, and the raised eyebrows are already there, so the snarky remarks and howling moon music they play, well, it won’t appear as you just got “owned” by an anchor.That’s the best treat of all! Getting a teams name out? Well, that’s important yes, but Halloween is the worst time of the year to do that. Why? After Halloween, the teams name, what they offered as “science” and the evidence and effort they put forth, well, it’s going to be replaced with the Holiday Season. Those teams hard work had just been replaced with Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas shopping! All that “hard work” has just went to pot! Just tell the story of the haunt, no need to make a big fool out of yourself while you do it! So, I invite you to watch local teams show up on the local news stations and I challenge you to see how hard they try to be “official” this time of year! Watching these teams, well that’s another treat all by itself!
Fun- This is the best time of the year for families. It allows adults to behave like children and children to get away with eating way too much candy and well, behaving like little monsters, literally. This time of year allows people to feel more comfortable taking about their “ghostly visitors”, so in turn, it may open up some potential investigation locations, but that’s about it.
Ghostly fun! My team just conducted an investigation at one of Oklahoma City’s well known travel and adventure locations. I will post the results of our findings before the end of next week, just in time for Halloween!
So, I will have many blogs up this month!
Until then, here are a few events I will be speaking at! Time to gear up for Halloween!
County Line Restaurant- October 10th & 17th. Reservation only. BBQ & Banshee’s dinner and ghost hunt. www.ghouli.org for details. Seating is limited!
Moore Public Library- Teen’s go Beyond series! I will have a paranormal research lecutre for teens, and even adults on October 19th.
TapWerks- Bricktown OKC- Sometime this October!
October 23rd- Chisholm Trail Book Festival
Enid Oklahoma Public Library- AM lecture- October 10th.
Just to name a few!
Stay tuned for our investigative report of one of Oklahomas biggest and most fun attractions! You will be suprised with what we discovered!!!
Over the past nine years I have heard many stories about ghosts, strange events, spooky experiences and even haunted objects. If you do a quick Google search, it’s not hard to find a plethora of haunted items for sale and for auction. The fascination with these items is very popular and many of the haunted objects are selling for top dollar at auction sites. What’s the big deal with haunted items? Why would a person want to purchase them and who are these people that seem to have all the luck with finding these oddities? I have been reading a lot about these items and I have been paying attention to the writing styles that are behind them. Haunted Dolls are big sellers these days. I know grown men that hate dolls, because they are often creepy. The older dolls have the look of peeling paint and blackened eyes, fit for any horror movie. It seems to be the new thing to buy haunted. Perhaps people these days are lonely, bored or just crazy? Perhaps if they are like me, they would purchase these items just because the odds of them being haunted, well, it’s a fun gamble and well worth the risk. Who knows, it could be haunted!? What a great conversation piece to place on your mantle! It’s always fun to talk to people and hear their stories of how big of a sucker they were in purchasing online auction items. Some people are just collectors of strange objects, if funds were available, I would probably be one of those people.
Haunted objects, it’s a forgotten and slightly ignored subject in the paranormal field. It’s forgotten because the subject is slightly boring and there is nothing that “ghost hunters” can do! I too will admit that I would prefer to go into an old and creepy hospital compared to sitting for hours to monitor an old clock that’s believed to be haunted. One thing that a lot of researchers and even the skeptics are ignoring is the fact that there are a lot of reports of objects being cursed, haunted or have some kind of spirit attached. No, I’m not talking about the ones for sale on the Internet. I’m talking about the people that don’t call the ghost hunters; they just get rid of the object entirely. I have spoken with many people that have purchased or inherited an object, usually an antique of some sort and had a string of strangeness take place after the item arrived. Items such as books, clocks, old quilts, pieces of furniture, toys, photos, watches and even paintings area all deemed haunted. When the people obtained the items they were not afraid of them, not one bit. The experiences just evolved, that is what makes the stories more intriguing than a regular ghost story. Those that I have talked with over the years are more upscale and not the typical person that believes in such things as “ghosts.” They are not the types to call some t-shirt sporting ghost hunting team to visit their home either. The people are working citizens, educated and were not the least bit prepared to the string of mishaps that took place in their homes and lives. I have heard reports from sudden insect or rodent infestations after a small trinket was inherited. People have reported, strange noises, knocks on the wall, falling photos and even small fires. It is entirely possible that “bad luck” was blamed on these objects, so don’t peg me as a believer just yet. I’m not willing to accept the blame or the possibility of an innocent coincidence to justify someone’s strange events.
One of the most popular collections of haunted items is the traveling exhibit, featuring the RMS Titanic artifacts and replications. Many years ago, the Titanic exhibit passed through Oklahoma. I was able to walk through and see all the found treasures that were aboard the historical ship. The items that made me become totally conscious of the tragedy was items such as hair brushes, some with hairs still in them and personal jewelry, not to mention children’s clothing, it was indeed haunting. The Titanic exhibit was even showcased on SciFi’s Ghost Hunters/TAPS not too long ago. The “team” entered the exhibit in search of traveling exhibit ghosts because curators have been reporting eerie sensations, being watched and even cold spots. Well, anyone with a soul would have been affected by this exhibit, even ghost hunters. Being around personal items might create more than just an uneasy feeling; it’s a feeling of empathy, on a non-psychic level and of course the blatant and very harsh pragmatism that is involved with the exhibit, over 1500 people did parish. Ghosts or were heartstrings just being tugged at? These emotions can be mistaken for fear of course, how and why? I will leave that up to the person that is seeking ghosts, not thinking rationally about the environment surrounding them. The TV spirit hunters reported sudden cold spots in the exhibit while at particular locations; I looked on the website to make sure that they still had the ginormious Iceberg as a part of the display. Sure enough, Iceberg ahead! Ice is cold folks, especially in big chunks! Way to exploit a tragedy and turn it into folk lore for future generations!
Energy- It is totally possible that items can be some kind of “collector” of energies from the past. If someone prayed to a rosary several times in a day over the course of twenty years, it is possible that those persons “energy” could be somehow, be collected within the object. Anything is possible right? I recently read a story about a haunted bedroom set. She purchased a full sized bed, dresser and armoire. Once the woman settled into her not so new antique bedroom set, strange things started to occur. Nightmares, waking up in terror, voices and even the feeling of being cold, while under the blankets. She dealt with them for a while and finally realized her problems started once the furniture arrived. She sold it (not on Ebay) and the terror stopped. On a psychological level, even small changes can generate anxiety within a totally stable person. She was convinced that the bedroom suit had some kind of bad Mojo to it, but it could have been because it was different, different enough to cause interrupted sleep. Kind of like when you go stay at a friend’s house, or a hotel, maybe a B&B and you just have a lot of trouble sleeping. You brain is aware of what is going on, your senses are peaked but you are in that state of “cat nap”. It’s just uncomfortable. Throw in the belief of ghosts and you have a whole new batch of nightmares heading your way. More and more I have watched places and items, just because they are old earn a haunting status, because of its age and outer appearance. I have learned because some items or places are old, does not make it haunted, creepy maybe, but not haunted. I will be so bold to state this as a fact.
Thinking- When we obtain something new, we subconsciously remember the day, if it was a fantastic gift, you will remember it more, it’s that simple. People have things that are strange and odd take place all the time, throw in a rusty old tea set and watch the imagination can run wild. Awareness is what is taking place, later putting two and two together, and then even as more time passes by, making a full fledged mystery out of it, mystery means “ghosts” in today’s society. Today, it’s easier for people to admit they have a ghost or haunted object, before they would ever admit that they are forgetful, having sleep problems and should probably see a doctor. It is possible these have allowed their imaginations to run wild because they have a new creepy doll sitting in their living room. That’s what you get for buying creepy dolls! The best part of a haunted item is that the majority of reports are that when the people “get rid” of the item, the haunting, bad luck and curse seems to stop instantly. Sure, it can be in their minds, but then again, there is always a possibility!
I am a proud owner of a vintage ventriloquist dummy that was sold not as “haunted” but just as “it’s creepy, and it scares my kids, I need to get rid of it”; it was given to me as a birthday gift. Of course in the right hands, the dummy would be a full fledged demonically tuned haunted doll ready for sale on the Internet, with a hefty price tag of course and totally worthy of contacting those as seen on TV ghost hunting teams! The doll sets proudly in my living room. I have yet to have any disturbances, but its faded little eyes do follow you wherever you are in the room!
On this blog, I would like to open it up for you to post your theories, stories and ideas about haunted items. Is it a paranormal-psychosomatic or is there something else? Please share your story & thoughts.
Here is a listing of items that are for sale on the internet if you are willing to become a collector of haunted items.
Oh, if you need “removal” of your haunted items, contact me I will come and pick them up for you!
Oh, want to buy more than just a haunted item? Try buying a haunted house?
PS- before you attempt to exploit your house to sell in this type of fashion, remember that stigmatized property takes 50% longer to sell and will depreciate the value tremendously! Think twice before you attempt to rake in the “big bucks” with a bogus haunted property.
As a paranormal researcher I have an open mind and I am ready to witness the next extraordinarily unexplainable event just as much as the rest of the world. Over the years I have witnessed strange events, heard noises, voices, been touched and have even seen my share of ghostly apparitions while visiting some of Oklahoma’s most haunted places. One thing that seems to confuse a lot of people is how often does a true paranormal event take place? If you watch those nifty television shows, like SciFi’s Ghost Hunters or A&E’s
Over the past nine years I have been to many places. I have posted most of my findings on my website. I have some great and often unbelievable stories to share about things that go bump in the night. The fact of the matter is, real paranormal research is nothing like what is seen on TV. It has taken me nine years to substantiate any morsel of belief that I have within my soul. At times, I do find myself in a state of non belief, but it comes and goes. Nine years is a long time and I will admit that it looks like what I do is pretty exciting. It’s not. I live in the real world with real time. My adventures do not have expensive opening and closing credits, nor do they have custom theme music or suspenseful graphics indicating that something ghostly is lurking around the corner. It has taken me nine years to collect a handful of moments that I feel were truly unexplainable. It’s not as easy as it appears to be on television.
This past Halloween, SciFi’s Ghost Hunters a.k.a. TAPS, had a real live paranormal investigation. The event lasted more than five hours with many, and I mean many commercial breaks. As a “ghost hunter” myself, I of course had better things to do on Halloween night than watch five hours of live TV. After trick or treating with my family, I went to sleep! The next day or two passed by, the video from the event was beginning to get posted on the internet. The next week, they had a recap show, highlighting all the “paranormal” events that took place during the live show. I was intrigued, especially by the jacket tug phenomenon. I even boasted a bit about it on our radio show. The next day I wanted to see the jacket moment again. I found the show footage on youtube. I was not aware that Grant Wilson’s jacket was tugged a total of three times. “Three times, really?” I asked myself, I was not buying it. As I watched more I realized that there was something seriously wrong with the situation. I have yet to find a paranormal researcher or ghost hunter in the United States that have had that much “luck” while on an investigation, something was pointing to the shady side of research and it was not shadow people. The jacket tug was just too much, a blatant production overkill perhaps. I watched the below footage and still was not convinced that it was paranormal. No matter how much I wanted to believe, what I was seeing was nothing more than a parlor trick. Perhaps some fishing line, hand in pocket with each tug, each tug the lack of use of the right hand, the unnatural reaction within a human being to regain balance, none of it added up. And I was not alone.
After watching the footage, I noticed on the menu that there was a breakdown of the jacket tugging. I viewed the video and realized that this was bigger than just a few people. Thousands upon thousands of views and comments were posted in retaliation of this video, some supportive of the “jacket phenomenon”. Here is the analysis that opened many eyes in the field of research and with fans of the show. This video has single handedly created a scandal in the field of paranormal research.
I am one of the hosts of a Paranormal Radio show on the Para-X network called the Ghost Divas LIVE. We have a very active and adult rated “blog” where we talk about all kinds of things involving the paranormal field. We offer commentary on things we see, read, hear or handed to us by “informants”, it often gets heated but it’s all in good fun in hopes to educate others. We decided to attempt to reenact the “jacket tug”; we spent a minute or two and figured out the best way to recreate the event. TAPS preaches continuously on their show that if things can be recreated, it’s more than likely not paranormal, it has been “debunked”. So, we did what they would do. We reenacted the jacket tug seen by millions. Of course our version is a bit different. We included some humorous sarcasm and over acting, just to make it entertaining. Yes, I do have a sense of humor. I take this research serious, but I am still a human being that can laugh at what we do as “ghost hunters”.
After the posting of our recreation on the internet, the backlash from supporters of the show started to pour in from everywhere. The video analysis that was posted, the originator was even getting death threats from crazed fans that claim that it was paranormal and that the cast of Ghost Hunters would never stage paranormal activity. The rebuttals ranged from “they are honest and would walk off the set if they were asked” to “It’s normal to keep your hand in your pocket if you are looking for something”. We offered up a challenge for anyone to “debunk” the “debunking” or any other common sense analysis of the video in favor to it actually being supernatural. To date, not a single person has stepped forward to validate the claims made by these paranormal celebrities. Not a single person! But there is a lot of this floating around!
Why does it matter to me that some guys were caught faking evidence on TV for a Halloween show? It doesn’t in the grand scheme of it all. Unfortunately, this particular show has been representing a field of research that I have been involved with for many years. I am not a fan of the show. I have had my suspicions as the seasons continued on, it was becoming more and more common that they would witness and capture purported paranormal activity. Although I never idolized them as much as some people and teams, they were the closest thing to what I do as a paranormal researcher. Their show has pushed our little “hobby” into the mainstream which in turn has allowed more cases to come forward. The “shame” was being lifted and it gave people who were experiencing a suspected “haunting” the courage to come forward. As a researcher, this is a moment where I am ashamed to be in the same category as these guys. Faking evidence is not standard practice with 90% of teams that I know of here in
Don’t believe in claims of the paranormal, until all possibilities of it being normal have been eliminated.
PS- I did not miss the "EVP" captured on the live show. It's not worth the time and energy to discuss it, because it was not paranormal. Even TAPS are now disputing the audio being an authentic EVP, even after they played it off during the live show! The mas majority of EVP's collected are not audible buy the human ear and "looped" for our pleasure.