Dammit, sucked in again. Wednesday nights I turn on the SyFy Channel because there are ghosthunting shows on. Ghost Hunters (TAPS) in particular.
Do these folks actually scare up ghosts? Do they actually document strange happenings? My feeling is a big, fat, no (and if you Google whether TAPS is faked or not, you’ll come across some debates about it), but so? I like the people who are involved, and I like the cool places they go. One show took them to the Birmingham, AL old steelworks and I learned a bit of history with that, which was cool. Anyway, they’re all so totally earnest about their hunting, and they get into these deep discussions about what they might or might not actually be hearing:
Ghost Hunter 1: “Did you hear that?”
Ghost Hunter 2: “Shh…”
1: “Dude, it sounded like footsteps.”
2: “Yeah, it did. But a certain kind.”
1: “Yeah, not sneakers.”
2: “No, more like hard soles.”
1: “Definitely hard-soled shoes in the hallway.”
2: “That’s it, yeah. Hard-soled shoes out there in the hallway.”
1: “And it went on for a few seconds.”
And then, of course, the skewed camera angles to give extra weird effect, especially if they’re sneaking around a museum or library or something that features displays. Oh, and my fave is when one of ’em says “Oh, my God. Did you see that?” And BOOM cut to commercial and then when it comes back to the show, it has to backtrack a little and then with the “Oh, my God. Did you see that?” you find out it’s actually just some weird shadow that’s from outside or something kind of lame like that.
Who DOESN’T like a good ghost story? Who DOESN’T like to try to creep their friends out with a ghostly story they heard or something weird that happened to them one night (embellished for extra super special scary effect)?
I enjoy a good ghost story, and I think that’s why I watch shows like this. I like thinking there’re things out there I can’t explain, and that maybe there are conduits to other worlds. Plus, they provide some nice inspiration for even more stories. Nothing wrong with a bit of skepticism, but there’s also nothing wrong with a bit of “what if…?” either.
And that’s what writing’s all about. 🙂