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Want to hear something really stupid? Of course you do. Why else would you be reading a paranormal blog?

We’ll be the first to admit that Looking For Ghosts has featured some ridiculous stories on occasion. There’s been a ghost bus. Even a ghost chicken. But this next report is so laughably insane that it makes both of those stories seem like Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpieces of monumental integrity.

In an article which even Derek Acorah would probably describe as “utter bullshit”, a paranormal expert in Britain has claimed that ghosts are contacting the living through mobile phones, with the number of mystery calls attributed to them rising by 43 percent in the last four years.

Phil Hayes, a spectre investigator from Paranormal Research UK, claims that a third of all haunting are now through mobile phones.

“There is evidence to suggest that ghosts can use phones to communicate, with reports of people receiving phone calls from deceased relatives,” Hayes is quoted as saying. Although exactly what type of “evidence” he is referring to is unclear; presumably it’s not the kind of evidence that you can see. Or hear. Or exists.

He goes on to explain that the calls feature heavy static with a “faint and distant voice”, with the caller ID often showing as “withheld number” or “000000000000″.

Definitely sounds like ghosts to us. What else could it be? Apart from telemarketing companies, of course. Or a fault with the line. Or just about anything else.

In a study which was, bizarrely, conducted by Tesco Mobile, it has been revealed that there is a 70 percent rise in paranormal evidence in the last year due to people using their phones. Again, “evidence” in this context appears to be based entirely of listening to the stories their customers have made up. Worse still, they seem to be actively encouraging this absurdity.

“We’d recommend those brave enough to capture any spooky sightings should MMS or email their pics to the paranormal society for investigation,”  says Lance Batchelor, CEO of Tesco Mobile, common sense and logic seemingly having abandoned him completely.

“Keep your camera phone on the highest quality resolution setting and use the recorder to capture the noise of any spectral sounds,” he adds.

Perhaps it would be more responsible to advise their customers not to confuse basic technical glitches with paranormal activity, whilst also seeking to reassure them that the souls of the dead are not trying to get in touch. But, far from trying to distance themselves from this lunacy, Tesco appear to be keen to establish itself as the network of choice for spirits and ghouls.

And if you can’t trust the nation’s biggest supermarket chain to keep a level head, then what chance have the rest of us got? On the strength of this story, we are a nation in decline.

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With all due respect, you should all be deeply ashamed of yourselves. With the varied readership Looking For Ghosts attracts, surely some of you have had a ghostly experience? But still our Your Stories section sits emptier than a Ramones reunion gig. It’s embarrassing. Make something up if necessary; we don’t care.

Still, if the mountain won’t come to Muhammad then Muhammad must go to the mountain. In order to counteract this massive disappointment we have once again been sifting through the internet’s oozing pile of waste for the best, or worst, reader-submitted ghost stories. All for your morbid amusement. We’re too good to you, we really are.

Have you experienced anything as scary as this? Let us know!

The Entity Kept Kissing Me: If you read no other ghost stories this year, we implore you to read this one. It really does beggar belief. There is simply nothing else we can write here that will be funnier than the story itself. Enjoy (although not as much as the guy in the story, please…)

Shadow Wears A Hat: This story starts with a startling claim of “Sixth Sense” proportions although, as the author is keen to point out a number of times, he really isn’t too bothered about it. Until he sees a shadow. Wearing a hat. And then vomits.

A Toast To Grandma: This family cannot seem to come up with a logical explanation for why a wine glass might shatter of its own accord. Probably best to assume a dead old lady did it. That’s what most people would do.

The Glowing Skeleton: Pretty dull, this one. Only included because we were intrigued as to what a “calm” scream would sound like.

My Strange Experience: These girls have a pretty casual approach to conducting a Ouija Board and manage to piss off an entity called Jacob. They couldn’t even “be bothered” to cleanse the house properly afterwards, demonstrating alarming nonchalance in the face of paranormal mayhem.

My Poor Cats: This woman lives in a  trailer-park and her cats started going berserk. Even smearing her home with herbs didn’t help. Who would have thought?

Need Advice On Dealing With Ghosts: The title of this story suggested it was an advert for people who need help coping with problematic spirits, but sadly it isn’t. This is a girl who needs YOUR help. She’s been hearing “jingling” from an early age, and sometimes feels cold. Sounds awful, being that sensitive to the elements. Oh, and she predicts things in dreams to a 90% level of accuracy. She’s only 14, so probably making it up for attention. Teenagers are like that. The best advice we can give her is to stop lying.

Let it never be said that Looking For Ghosts are afraid to address the big issues. So far, we’ve tackled the controversial ZOZO debate and attempted to debunk numerous myths and stories, but today we scale new heights. We are going to talk about the persecution of Jews. We are on uncomfortable ground indeed.

Amazingly, we’re not going to mention the holocaust (apart from just then, obviously) but something far closer to home than many Brits would care to remember. We have to cast our minds back to 1290, a time when the internet was powered by horses and dinosaurs roamed London’s gas lit streets.

At this time, before Hitler and the Nazis had their wicked way, Jews were being run out of Britain. Presumably not in the most reasonable and orderly fashion either.

According to one ancient account, a boat due to transport Jewish families from London to Poland was moored on a small island in the middle of the Thames, leaving the ship and its passengers stranded. After evacuating the ship, the captain and crew managed to free the vessel and retreat back to the shore, leaving hundreds of Jews stranded in the middle of the river. As the tide rose, they inevitably drowned and it is said that their anguished cries can still be heard under London Bridge to this day.

Call us cynical, but a few things about this story don’t quite add up. Firstly, how is it possible for anyone to beat a hasty retreat in a gigantic passenger ship? It’s not like it’s a speedboat. Surely they didn’t just stand there looking at the ship slowly lumbering away?  “It’s alright, they’ll be back. They’ve probably just forgotten about us. Boy, are they going to be embarrassed when they realise!”

Also, at the risk of sounding callous, if they were stranded in the middle of the Thames then they weren’t actually that far from the river’s banks. Couldn’t they have just swam for it? We’re not suggesting it would have been the most pleasant dip they would ever have, but if their lives depended on it (which evidently they did) then it must have been worth a try.  Realistically, only about 30 metres of rancid water separated them from safety.

We’re not intending to sound facetious or disrespectful, but this whole scenario just seems far too elaborate and cumbersome a process to carry out a mass murder.

More likely is that the ship simply sank, probably nowhere near London Bridge, but this wouldn’t have been quite interesting enough. Besides, why let the facts get in the way of a good story?

Another account reveals that the anguished screams are more likely to be from the souls who were beheaded at nearby Traitors Gate and whose heads were flung into the Thames. Yes, that seems far more likely.

Suffice to say that we didn’t hear any anguished cries under the bridge, although the fact that 720 years have passed since this event would suggest that their spirits have probably grown tired of all that screaming and are now resigned to their rather dubious fate.

Here at Looking For Ghosts, we are committed to researching all aspects of the paranormal world in order to bring you, our loyal readers, the most varied spectrum of information as possible. Whether we’re visiting famous haunted locations, trawling the internet for hysterical supernatural encounters or sitting in a dusty library with our noses stuck in spooky books, we make sure no stone is left unturned in our quest to find a ghost.

With this in mind, we will now turn our attention to a popular, if not slightly dubious, corner of the paranormal community; ghost photography. No, not photographs taken by ghosts. Photographs of ghosts. Well, possibly. But most likely not.

This week, we will specifically be looking at orbs. Big, round, beautiful, bouncy orbs. Behold!

Phwoar! Check out the orbs on that!

Insects

Rain

But what are they? Ask most paranormal enthusiasts and they will probably mutter something about orbs being spirits caught on camera or balls of energy that will leave you scratching your head and regretting that you asked in the first place.

In reality, orbs are caused by the flash from the camera reflecting on dust particles, insects or drops of moisture in the air. All perfectly normal and utterly unmysterious. If anyone ever tries to tell you any different, simply find the nearest stick and beat them with it until they are a whimpering, sorry mess. Only stop when they tell you, between terrified screams of anguish, that they were wrong and that orbs are not scary, thus surrendering any tiny atom of respect you might have once had for them.

Once this is done, you will have to locate your nearest police station and turn yourself in. Don’t worry; there isn’t a court in the land that will convict you.

(Note: Looking For Ghosts does NOT condone the use of violence, even against orb enthusiasts.)

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