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Showing posts from November, 2006

Skinwalkers

While writing and researching the entry for the Lilly E. Gray mystery, one word stood out to me: skinwalkers. It's a word/creature that I have never heard of. Skinwalkers are much like werewolves.

A skin-walker is a person with the supernatural ability to turn into an animal, generally in a Native American context. It can be any animal that it chooses but is frequently seen as a coyote, wolf, bear, owl, fox or crow. The skinwalkers are described as being fast, agile, and impossible to catch. Navajo skinwalkers retain their full mental capacities. If the Navajo witch is a fairly or highly intelligent person, when he or she changes into a Skinwalker they carry that intelligence with them and you have a very dangerous opponent. They also like to pull out their bag of tricks using mind control, disease and immobilization powder.

Skinwalkers can be found in numerous cultures but is most documented in Navajo legends. A yee naaldlooshii is one of the several varieties of Navajo witch (sp…

Dead Silence

If you remember correctly, B from All-Night.org rented my blog a couple of weeks ago. Well she is back with another blog called Dead Silence. Practically everyone has some kind of general interest in serial killers. It's interesting how they think, why they choose to kill and even who they are.

Dead Silence provides information about the all-star killers from past and present as well as other high profile cases. Keep in mind, this blog seems fairly new but it holds much promise. This world is of no short killers. So, she has plenty of information to keep it going.

You may even discover a few you've never even heard of, not all serial killers make the front page, or maybe you know of one to share. There was one in my hometown of Texarkana in 1940s which the case is still unsolved 'til this day.

As an added bonus, she also touches base on various TV shows, books and movies that you may interest you too. The new show on Showtime called Dexter sounds like a definite must see. I m…

Peace Sign a Symbol of Satan?

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A woman in Denver is facing a $25 a day fine for putting up a Christmas wreath with a peace sign because some residents not only say it is an anti-Iraq war protest but also a symbol of Satan. I can understand it being seen as an anti-war thing but a symbol of Satan? When did the peace sign become a symbol of Satan? Am I the only one confused by this?

Lisa Jensen claims that she wasn't thinking about the war when she hung the wreath. She was a past president of the Loma Linda Homeowners Association in Pagosa Springs and doubts that she will have to pay $1,000 to keep the wreath up. However, she says she won't take it down until after Christmas. "Now that it has come to this I feel I can't get bullied," she said. "What if they don't like my Santa Claus?" If it were me, I would keep the wreath up and pay the fine.

Three or four residents, some of which have children serving in Iraq, feel they are offended by the wreath. The subdivision's rules say no…

GS Question of the Week

I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving that is if you celebrate the holiday. Women Diary'sweek here is up and I am looking for a new renter. You'll have until this afternoon to bid.

This week's question:

Some scientists theorize that ball lightning may be the cause of Spontaneous Human Combustion. Do you agree or disagree? Why?

My Answer: I don't think it is. I think ball lightning is one of those far fetch theories because there isn't much evidence to prove otherwise.

Happy Thanksgiving

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Victim of the Beast 666

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I used this particular case as inspiration for a GS Question of the Week and thought I would share the enigma. Lilly E. Gray from Salt Lake City, Utah died on November 14, 1958 from supposedly natural causes at the age of 77. On her headstone, the words "Victim of the Beast 666" are inscribed. Most headstones are inscribed with "Devoted Mother" or "Beloved Husband". This one definitely raises questions.

Some people have taken the time to investigate this mystery further. As a result, many theories have developed. Some say the phrase is based on religion. "The Beast" and "666" both have become synonymous with Satan and Antichrist. So, it is possible. I have heard speculations that she was a victim of an exorcism gone bad or connected with Aleister Crowley who had been known to call himself "The Beast 666".

Another theory states that she may have died of a virus that mimicked one we known all too well today, AIDS. I believe it ma…

El Camino de la Muerte

This particular place caught my eye after learning about it on The History Channel. It's called El Camino de la Muerte a.k.a The Death Road. Why is it called The Death Road? Over 200,000 people, about 150 people each year, have died since this road was constructed.

They don't have an exact number of deaths as many buses with unregistered passengers have ended in accidents. It seems like buses are the ones most often having accidents on that road. Located in Bolivia, it is the only way to get from La Paz to the Amazon. They are in the process of building a safer route but after many years and millions of dollars, they are still not close to finishing it.

One particular man was traveling with his wife and child on the road in a bus. The bus tumbled over the edge, about a 2,000 ft drop. His wife and child both died, but the man survived. After the man recovered a bit, days after the accident, he traveled on the road once again in another bus in search of his child's body whic…

GS Question of the Week

Do you think the image on the Shroud of Turin is that of Christ or nothing but a painting? Why?

My Answer: I don't think it is the image of Christ. Some say that it is a fake and that Leonardo Da Vinci painted it. I think I believe that explanation more than others.

A Woman's Diary

My renter of the week is Women Diary. The title says it all. Whatever you need to know about women, you'll find it here. From beauty tips to celeb gossip.

The latest in female celebrity news is Britney Spears divorce. I was so proud of that girl when she filed for divorce, but I knew he wasn't going down without a fight. According to Women Diary, K-Fed is threatening to release their alleged sex tape if Britney doesn't pay him like 16 million and hand over custody of their two kids. If it were me, I would let him sell the tape, if it does exist and apparently, I'm not the only one who thinks that.

Us Weekly magazine’s contributing editor Katrina Szish said, "If a tape does exist, I don’t think it will be damaging for Britney. We’ve seen her at her lowest point. She’s on her way back up. This would be a tape she did with her husband when they were married. Whatever may be in that tape, it really doesn’t matter anymore."

It seems Britney isn't the only one wor…

Contest Winners

The winners of my 2nd Blogiversary contest are KizzyKim, B (my renter this past week) and Lori. Congratulations to you all!!

As you know, BlogExplosion only allows you to send so many credits to a single person within a seven day time period. I don't understand why. Seems kind of inconvenient to me, but oh well. I'm sure they have a reason for it.

Lori, I've sent you your prize. Enjoy them. Kizzy and B, I'm going to have to send yours via installments, but you will get what you won. I promise. You each received the first installment today. The next one will be on the day after Thanksgiving.

I'm saying goodbye to my renter, All-Night.org as her week expired today. I'm going to wait to put up an offer for my next renter until tomorrow night. Saturdays are guest posts days and it wouldn't be fair to someone who chooses to take advantage of it since they wouldn't be given a lot of time to do it. So the offer will be up tomorrow night and the person will be cho…

Guess What Today Is?!?!?

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Okay, I'm just going to tell you. Today is...(drum roll please)........Ghost Stories 2nd Blogiversary!!!!! It was two years ago on this day that I began this blog and I'm very proud of it. I had planned on doing this big celebration, but unfortunately, do to circumstances beyond my control, that won't be happening.

So, this is what I'm going to do. First, I'm going to give away 1,000 BlogExplosion credits to the first person to leave a comment with their BE username, 500 credits to the second and 100 credits to the third. This offer is only available until noon tomorrow.

I'm also going to share with you my very first post here. Most people start their blogs off with a welcome post but mine was a ghost story. So enjoy!

Bunnyman Bridge I'm sure some of you have even heard of Bunnyman Bridge from the show "Scariest Places on Earth." It is located in Fairfax, Virginia on Colchester Road. Now there are various stories about the Bunnyman but most conclu…

Ghost Hunters and HorrorFest

Is it just me or does anyone else think that TAPS should have saved their first live show for when they went to Leap Castle in Ireland? Don't get me wrong. The second investigation at the Stanley Hotel was quite eventful but I think it would have been better at Leap. I'm sure there were probably circumstances beyond their control where they were unable to do that.

It's too bad Steve couldn't join them, but I understand why. Maybe one day he will be able to get past his fears.

HorrorFest is this weekend. There will be encore performances of audience favorites on November 20th and 21st. Please check the website to see if a theater near you is listed. If online ticketing is available for that theater, you can pre-order your tickets (they are priced at each theater's standard admission pricing). If you can't or choose not to pre-order, you can purchase tickets on the day of the event. From what I understand, you don't get to buy one ticket and get to see all eigh…

Widows Sues The Department of Veteran Affairs

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I was blog surfing yesterday and saw this posted on one. Forgive me because I can't remember exactly which blog I saw it on.

The story is that two women named Roberta Stewart, husband Nevada National Guard Sgt. Patrick Stewart who was killed last year in Afghanistan, and Karen DePolito, husband Jerome Birnbaum who was a Korean veteran that died last year, are suing the Department of Veteran Affairs. Why? The reason is simple.

It seems just about every religious symbol is allowed on a soldier's headstone except a pentacle. They don't allow a symbol of the Wicca religion on any veterans' headstone in national cemeteries because they do not recognize it as a religion which is interesting.

The military recognizes it as a religion, even though President Bush disagrees (not surprising, huh?). They allow soldiers who are Wiccans to list it on their dog tags, Wiccan organizations are allowed to hold services on military installations and the Army Chaplains Handbook includes an ex…

Ghostly Thirteen

I switched to the Beta version. If you're having any troubles with my blog, let me know via a comment or email. Also, be sure and check out B's blog: All-Night.org.

Ghostly Thirteen
13 Haunted Lighthouses

1. Bird Island Lighthouse
2. Marshall Point Lighthouse
3. Ocracoke Light
4. St. Augustine Lighthouse
5. White River Light Station
6. Minots Ledge Lighthouse
7. Harbour Town Light
8. Point Lookout Lighthouse
9. Yaquina Head Light
10. New London Ledge Light
11. Fairport Harbor Light
12. Baker Island Light
13. St. Simons Island Light

Add the link of your post if you are participating.

GS Question of the Week

Do you think paranormal-reality based TV shows such as Ghost Hunters, Most Haunted and Celebrity Paranormal Project help or hurt how the field is viewed among the world population? Why?

My Answer: I think it depends. Ghost Hunters is more about being professional and scientific while Most Haunted is pure entertainment. I think shows that concentrate on pleasing rather than informing the audience pretty much fuel the fire. They give the population a reason to accuse any type of believer as being crazy. Many things in this world were once unexplained.

A Few Announcements

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I have a few things I'd like to inform you. First, if you didn't already know, the next installment of Ghostly Thirteen will be tomorrow. If you haven't participated in the past and would like to, allow me to give you a little background information.

Ghostly Thirteen is based on the Thursday Thirteen meme. It's a monthly meme where you post a paranormal related list. For example, if your blog is similar to my own, you can list your top 13 posts or your 13 favorite haunted places. Something along those lines. I always end with the auto-links widget. I ask that you please don't list your link unless you're participating.

I've also decided to delete the Ghost Stories Forum. It's been up for over a month and no one is really using it. So, I'm going to pretty much do away with the whole idea.

One last thing. I'm not sure how many of you are aware of several weblog awards there are hosted annually. I noticed yesterday that one is accepting nominations st…

Reader Submission - Spirits and Tarot

My renter B from All-Night.org has written a nice piece on spirits and tarot. Be sure and check out her site to learn more about her.

First I want to thank Andrea for renting to me. I'm a huge fan of this blog and try to check it out on a regular basis.

I'm going to take the time to explain some things that I think everyone who's interested in spirits and tarot related things should know. Any person who truly has "the gift" will not charge a fee. Instead they will accept a gift. This gift could be anything from a candle to crystals. I'm lucky enough though to have a personal friend who is Wiccan and has the gift that she chooses to share with others. In all her years she has never accepted money for a tarot reading or for a seance.

Speaking of séances, you should never just get a group of friends together and do one for giggles. It's a very serious event and should be treated with respect. I would never do one on my own or without someone with experience.…

Happy Veterans Day

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Much appreciation to all our veterans. Thank you for everything you have done for us.

Did Ya Know Friday

Did ya know that Mary Surratt was the first female in the United States to be executed? In 1865, she was arrested and charged for conspiracy and with aiding the assassins and assisting their escape. Who was she accused of conspiring against? President Abraham Lincoln.

After her husband died, Mary moved with her two kids, Anna and John Jr., to Washington D.C. Her Surrattsville Tavern was being rented to a man named John Lloyd. To make extra money she began renting space in her Washington D. C. residence as well. During the Civil War, John Jr. became a confederate spy and messenger. He met John Wilkes Booth who became a regular at the Surratt boardinghouse.

Some believe Mary knew about the kidnapping but not the assassination plot about President Lincoln. As many reported conspirators came and go in her home, it's possible that through Booth's charm she turned a blind eye. Some women are willing to ignore a man's faults despite it all, but I have to say I have much sympathy fo…

All Night Long

I would like to welcome my new renter for the week, All-Night.org. First of all, I have to give some major props for the template. It's quite beautiful. I do some blog surfing on a occasion and I often see blogs with custom templates. One day I hope to be able to afford one for here but until then I'm perfectly contempt with the one I have. Caz does some pretty cool templates which are all available to download for free.

As I was saying before I got off track, All-Night.org is basically a nice personal blog: pictures of the pets (her dog Wolfie is soo cute) to her daily encounters. She has a small contest going on at the moment. Fifty BlogExplosion credits for writing a short but informative intro for her "About" section on the sidebar. Yeah, it's not much, but it's a chance to win fifty credits more than you had before, right?

The one post that particularly caught my eye was in regards to her experience with a seance. I'm totally on the fence about séances…

Ghost Hunters Live Results

Ghost Hunters first live show was pretty eventful. It seems people were hitting that panic button more than I realized not that I am surprised. I guess I expected them to have caught more evidence on their equipment, but the EVPs were pretty cool. They had quite a few personal experiences which adds to the pot.

They talked about "orbs" some viewers said they were seeing, but I do remember some seeing, including myself, something white, maybe a ghost or whatever. I don't recall them bringing that up. I guess they didn't catch it on a DVR.

Overall, I do hope they consider doing this again. Next week, they are going to Ireland. That should be interesting.

In a matter of minutes, I will be saying farewell to my current renter, The Paranormal Blog, and looking for a new one. If you would like to rent space here, go to BlogExplosion and bid. The cost is only 30 credits. I apologize in advance if you bid and it expires before I have a chance to accept or deny it. Unfortunately…

Just a Suggestion

If you are not in the habit of checking to see who is linking to you, I suggest you start. I was checking Wholinkstome.com like I do on occasion and discovered that I was contributing to a site called My Grassy Knoll without even knowing it.

I'm not like furious over the situation because even though they posted content from my blog on theirs, they credited me for it. It just would have been nice to have known about the whole thing in the first place.

Ninety percent of the content on my blog isn't my original material, but if you are a writer that posts your work on your blog, then you should do occasional searches to make sure someone isn't stealing your work.

If you are looking for some original paranormal viewpoints, check out my renter The Paranormal Blog. They only have a few days left in their week.

GS Question of the Week

How was your Halloween?

My Answer: My Halloween was ok. I enjoy giving out candy to all the trick-or-treaters, but since moving to Oklahoma, we haven't had any. Not one in the two or three years that I've been here. Don't know why. That's just the way it is. Pretty sad, huh?

Dowsing

Dowsing, sometimes called divining or water witching, is a generic term for practices which proponents claim empower them to find water, metals, gem stones, sex of unborn children, hidden objects over a piece of land or a map (unmarked graves)and even ghosts, usually through fluctuations of apparatus including a Y-shaped twig, rods or pendulum. Some have even claimed to be able to sense the reactions without an apparatus but tests have not supported these claims.

Dowsing has existed in various forms for thousands of years and is considered the oldest form of divination known to man. The original may have been for divination purposes in order to divine the will of the gods, to foretell the future and divine guilt in trials. During the Middle Ages dowsing was associated with the Devil. In 1659 dowsing was declared Satanic by the Jesuit Gaspar Schott. In 1701 the Inquisition stopped using the dowsing rod in trials. Dowsing as practiced today may have originated in Germany during the 15th …

Reader Submission - A Good Scare

As promised, below is the guest post from this week's renter Matt Didier from The Paranormal Blog. If you enjoy this piece, be sure and check out his blog.

Many people come to blogs and sites like this with one thing in mind... a good scare.

One of the most common things we hear about our blog and sites is "C'mon, scare me!" or "Show me more pictures! I want to be scared!"

Of course, we see ghosts and hauntings as a genuine study that we apply science and serious research to... so therefore, a "good scare" isn't something we really offer... well, not really... that's the realm of Hollywood and certain horror novels... and for the most part, the "real" world of ghosts and hauntings is not all that exciting to read or look at for the third-party witnesses.

In fact, for the most part, "real" (reported/witnessed) ghosts and hauntings are rather mundane. Things seen from the corner of the eye, odd but subtle noises, strange …

Did Ya Know Friday

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There are plenty of little facts about our World History that have now intergrated into pop culture in one form or another. Vampires are but one species of nightwalkers that we know all too well from TV, film and books. But how much do you really know about them?

Most people now see Vampires as nothing but fictional monsters, but in the 19th Century these beings were seen as a serious threat. In Slavic beliefs, causes of vampirism included being born with a caul (a membrane present on a child after birth), teeth, or tail, being conceived on certain days, suicide, drowning or violent deaths, excommunication, and improper burial rituals.

Preventive measures included placing a crucifix in the coffin, placing blocks under the chin to prevent the body from eating the shroud, nailing clothes to coffin walls for the same reason, putting sawdust in the coffin (vampire revives in the evening and counts sawdust until he dies again in the morning) or piercing the body with thorns or stakes. In the…

Spooky Roomie

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Say hello to my new renter for this week: Sue Darroch and Matthew Didier from The Paranormal Blog. I first discovered this blog surfing on BlogMad and it certainly is not a disappointing read.

The Paranormal Blog is very much similar to this one except Sue and Matthew are paranormal investigator/researchers and I am not. My interest in this subject has only run for the last couple of years. I have mad respect for this two who have dedicated twenty years of their lives to it. They have founded and/or involved in several groups including Paranormal Studies and Investigations Canada, Pararesearchers and The Toronto Ghosts and Hauntings Research Society.

As said before, our blogs are not much different. You'll expect to find the same content as you would here and more. They have extended much generosity to my blog and I am happy to return the favor. Be sure and check out The Paranormal Blog.

Sue, a part of the renting package is the option of a guest post. If y'all would like to, you…

Ghost Hunters Live

I don't do a lot of ranting here, but considering the subject, I think I'll make an exception. Last night was Ghost Hunters first live show, six hours long. I had every intentions of watching the entire thing. However, my satellite provider had something else in mind.

Four hours into the program, Direct TV barred me from seeing the Sci-Fi Channel. So, I was unable to see the last two hours, actually I caught the last five minutes. I don't know why it did that, but it did. I'm sure they will probably re-air it sooner or later, but a live show isn't the same unless you get to see it when it is live. It's frustrating, but oh well.

As for the show itself, it was pretty good from what I saw. I was half expecting it to be like Most Haunted not as in the constant "I see this" and "I heard that" from TAPS, but from the viewers. However, they didn't have webcams set up in several rooms which I feel is a good thing. I hope that if they decide to do …