Monday, July 16, 2007

ghost stories

I woke up in the middle of the night last night when one of my dogs brushed up against my arm, which was hanging off the side of my bed. This isn't completely unusual, although with my three dogs it's odd that they're off the bed instead of on it. A California King doesn't go far with two adults, three big labs and any combination of night wandering children. Sometimes I think it would be more comfortable sleeping in the front seat of my car. It would certainly be less hairy.

What got my attention last night was that the arm brushing episode threw me back to my pretty young childhood and made me think of ghost stories. Specifically this one. Some blind person has to spend the night in a haunted house for some reason. Do not ask why. This was always the weak point in all the ghost story plot lines. Seriously. It's always a person at some physical disadvantage and they always have to stay in a haunted (possessed, Bermuda Triangle-ish, etc.) house for the sheer hell of it. As an adult I want to know why this fool felt the need to do it. As a kid I was enthralled. Anyway, this blind person had a dog and when they got scared in the haunted house they would reach out for the dog, who would reassuringly lick their hand. Well, of course this poor schmuck was never heard from again until the next thrill seeker went into the house, where they found the blind person's dead body and a note that said...

Humans can lick hands, too.

Ewwww. Can I tell you that this story scared the bejeezus out of me until I was about thirty? Part of it was that I loved ghost stories as a kid, even though I was a wimp. Part of it was that any story with a dog was okay with me, even if the dog turned out to have two legs. But most of it was the way I heard the story in the first place. At the Gun Club...

My grandparents belonged to a Rod and Gun Club when I was little and I spent a lot of time there with them. There were a lot of social events, mostly involving food, beer and cards. Surely I'm wrong, but I don't remember much in the way of rods or guns. But I guess if you called it the Beer and Poker Club you'd get a whole different clientele. While the adults did their adult things, the kids would go into this big club type room with a fireplace and tell ghost stories. We would all sit around in a circle and see who could scare the others into a quivering pile of kid flesh. It was an ongoing competition to see who could, week after week, dominate the floor with their scary stories. Being one of the youngest ones there, I was almost always the scare-ee instead of the scare- er, but it didn't matter. I loved all the stories, but the blind fool and the dog tale was the one that made the biggest impression on me. It still kind of gives me the heebees.

And I have absolutely no idea what made this whole subject pop into my head.


Jen said...

There's something kind of kinky about a hand-licking ghost. I think that might actually be the scariest part of the story, really. *grin*

auntie barbie said...

You won't belive this but a similar story with the same ending was told to a bunch of Girl Scouts ages 8 to 10 that I was camping with years ago. A few of the older girls thought it would be funny to lick everyones hands after they fell asleep. You can only imagine what it was like to be awoke by 20 screaming girls and 6 of them laughing so hard they were peeing their pants in the middle of the night.
I too have a king bed that was purchased to accommodate 3 dogs and a cat, all who like to sleep under the covers.

Mya said...

There are two that stick in my mind from when I was a kid. Having two evil elder sisters I was easy prey to this kind of thing. There was one about a man who buried his wife (he thought she was dead...yeah right, we believe you) - and when they dug her up years later there were scratch marks on the coffin lid where she'd tried to escape. Pause for sharp intake of breath and sip of gin and toic (I am on holiday you know!)The other one I think is a bit of an urban myth. Family driving break down in the middle of nowhere. They hear on radio about escaped nutter. Dad goes off to look for help fixing the car. Mum and kids stay put. Hours later, still no Dad. Night falls, then there's a bang bang bang on the roof... Der der deeerrrrrr. What's that noise Mum?
Mum looks out the window to see nutter banging Dad's severed head on the car roof. Lovely.
I need another drink now.

Mya x

Jo Beaufoix said...

This post brings back so many memories RC, and I was generally the scaree too.

My dad used to tell this story about a ghost that wandered around looking for her hairy toe. (I don't know why.)

She would happen upon poor unfortunates and ask them,

"Who's got my hairy toe?"

Ok I know it doesn't sound scary, but he'd go through this same scenario, doing the scary voice, describing the scary lady and her missing bewigged phalange, then at that point when it's all quiet, and we're kind of a bit tense and spooked, he would yell,

"You've got it."

It used to make us jump out of our skins but we loved it.

Happy in the Abyss said...

Kinda reminds me of the Summer in Texas that we rented every single scary movie that the video store had in stock.

The Rotten Correspondent said...

jen- ewww. never thought of it quite that way.

auntie barbie - WELCOME! So glad to hear from you.

all the rest of you- why is it that we want to be scared so bad?Is this somehing we're pursuing???