I have always loved the offbeat and the ghost story. 👻The flying saucers and the vampires. 💀I was a weird kid and I have always been a little different in the way I look at life. The thing is my love of horror movies and novels and flying saucers and science fiction ( though not hard scifi.)More Bradbury than Asimov. Anyway, the thing is I have a fun and entertaining “get ya popcorn ready” attitude with an honest “What if?” 🚀👽curiosity. Ironically, I get some of my love of the “unknown” from my religious conservative family. My mother who loved Country music 🎶🎻and battled her own religious guilt was also the first person who took me to the drive in to see “Dust Till Dawn” Horror Movie’s at the Rebel Drive In featuring Christopher Lee and Vincent Price or Boris Karloff. 👀💀Also, watching the The Cyclops and other movies featuring radioactive fall out and dangerous aliens and monsters on the old Dialing for Dollars afternoon movies.
My maternal grandmother who was Church of God and extremely devout told the story of an aunt who really didn’t like her as a child. The aunt died and one night my grandmother said she was in the house alone. She heard a creek on the stairs and there was her aunt coming down the stairs saying “I’ve been waiting a long time for this.” Scared the crap out of me as a child. Was my grandmother relating a story or a dream? I honestly can’t remember now but it was scary. 👻
My paternal great aunt lived in a really old house in Walnut Grove, Alabama. Civil war era home. She would go upstairs and get an old fox fur or something. I was really young but if I wasn’t minding. She would get the fur and throw it down the stairs while yelling “The hobgoblin is coming Stevie.” 😈 Yeah, I come from an eccentric bunch of people.
My hometown/county has a beautiful waterfall. It’s called Noccalula Falls and the area belonged to the Cherokee and the Creek Indian Tribes. Sorry I mean no offense and I know Native American is the “correct” term. But, I’m using the language of my youth and the way I heard the story. It comes from my mother who’s father and my grandfather’s side of the family perhaps passed down. My grandfather’s grandmother was Cherokee or at least that’s what was said. He certainly had the high cheekbones and dark skin.
The story goes that (and this first part is actual town legend and not a family story.) the Cherokee chief wanted peace with the other tribe. So, he promised his daughter Noccalula in marriage💍 to the other chief’s son. Noccalula had a brave she was in love with in her own tribe. When she realized her father was going to force her to marry the other man she jumped off the falls to her death rather than be married to a man she didn’t love. 💔My hometown of Gadsden actually has an ugly giant statue showing her jumping to her death. Awful taste by the city but I digress. Now for the story my family tells: On a clear night if you are quiet you can hear the Indian Princess weeping for her lost love. When the moon 🌕is full and you look under the falls you can see her sitting on a rock combing her long black hair while she weeps for her lost love.
So, yeah I’ve always loved the offbeat. I enjoy scary stories and books talking about alien abductions and trips aboard flying saucers. I’ve had Sleep paralysis since my youth. More in my youth than now. You can google it. It’s a real thing.
I loved my Weekly Reader in elementary school. I would order the ghost stories on the book order form. I have always enjoyed a good scare. I read Salem’s Lot in the mid to late 70’s and became a Constant Reader as Stephen King calls his fans. 📙I battled my religious background on that one folks. You have to be from the bible belt south to understand that one. So, I’ve always had this love of things that go bump in the night.💀👻
I had a childhood friend. She was my sister’s best friend. Tonya. She had ivory skin and jet black hair. We clicked I think because we were odd kids. We had a séance in the backyard because Tonya had lost an uncle to a fire and I think we were trying to see if we could reach him. I don’t remember for sure I’d have to ask my sister who remembers it better than I do.💀
My step father’s family had an old house in Center, Alabama that they say was haunted👻 and a little Chihuahua dog that could buzz like a bumble bee and ask to go outside. I know it’s weird but I remember the little fella doing a dog half bark half growl and I swear it sounded like “I want to go out maw.” There was an old attic in that house with some old books from the 1800’s.
Gawd, I sound like a John Grisham novel as far as weird southern families. But, I sometimes feel guilty that my own son who was born in Colorado to me late in life will never know the eccentricities of long ago southern adults. But, maybe that’s a good thing.
I remember being scared to death by an old black and white movie from that long ago era. “The Haunting” based on the Shirley Jackson novel “The Haunting of Hill House.” 👻
"No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone."….Shirley Jackson.
Three things about the movie stand out for me. So much so that I watch it every few years during the Halloween season. As a child this freaked me out and this is how I remember the scenes.
- The old statues in the garden appear to move. The character looks and then looks away. When she looks back again? They are in a different place.
- 2. The child of the owner is shown as a little girl in the nursery. Then she ages as the years pass. Finally, shown as an old woman beating on the walls with her cane trying to get her housekeeper to help her and dying as the cane drops to the floor.
- 3. Two women (with an undercurrent of sexuality that I missed as a child) share a room. There is a pounding on the walls during the night (remember the old lady?) as the pounding increases one woman cries out “Stop squeezing my hand so hard. You’re hurting my hand.” Then from across the room she hears her roommate “I’m not squeezing your hand.” As the roommate turns on the light it’s clear that she is not anywhere near the bed. “Oh God, who was squeezing my hand?” Scary stuff for a six or seven year old child back in the day. But, I love that movie
- .I have other memories of my grandmother's old house in Altoona, Alabama. Not fiction. But, I don't want to go into that right now. So my love of the offbeat is also mixed with actual experience.
- I'm sure it can be explained psychologically. Right? 😱As a youth I I really wanted to be a vampire. Eternally young and you could have any girl ya wanted. Zombies always bored me. No personality. They can't sit at a meal and tell you they never drink..wine. 🍷 They can't seduce a woman or talk about the children of the night. 🌙 No cool vampire bats or female vamps hiding in the basement. I swear zombies are more boring than werewolves. Which are actually pretty cool.
I love to read the actual conjecture of people like Jacques Vallee the French scientist the character in Close Encounters was based on. John Fuller writing about an alien abduction case called The Andreason Affair. Doctor David Jacobs talking about alien hybrids. The late Harvard Psychiatrist John Mack writing on the spiritual or interdemensional aspects of alien abduction phenomena. 👽
I enjoy reading and watching all this and more. Facebook is a great way to research this stuff. I'm in a reincarnation Facebook group that researches spontaneous memories of past lives as well as the late psychiatrist Ian Stevenson's work with children who remember past life experience.
- You would be surprised once you let go of the "this can't be true" dogma of your religion or scientism that you have been force fed from childhood in many cases .The real world is at least if not more weird and mysterious as our fiction.
- So how much of this do I really believe? I mainly find it fun and interesting. So I believe very little. But then again. In some ways I believe it all.
- Peace. ✌👀👻👽