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I love bad television. Really, really love it. And, not the "Lookit the weirdos!" bad tv; but the "aliens, conspiracies and ghosts, oh my!" bad tv. I generally like to think of myself as a pretty logical person, I don't actually believe in aliens and conspiracies and ghosts (oh my!), but there is something about watching them on television that I find HIGHLY entertaining. I've started to feel really terrible about it to- as a mortician I have seen more than my fair share of "psychic" shysters and frauds, petting the grieving Mothers, feeding bullshit to devastated Fathers and preying on the emotional states of spouses who have lost people to death. This sickens me, and makes me angry. But...I'll watch it on television all day.

Part of it probably stems from an "unexplained experience" I had in high school (which is totally explainable, and not at all mystical) I grew up in a house which has one of the best "ghostly" backgrounds possible.


The house of my childhood was a nineteenth century brick house in a mill town. Our house was on "President's Row" the houses owned by the bigwigs of the company, and separated from those of the workers. Our house was the one built specifically for the company doctor, his wife and twin daughters. One brutally cold winter, one of the daughters caught an intractable case of pneumonia, and even with all of her father's training, she died. For weeks following her death, the sister would try to run outside to "play with Sissy!"; and to the parent's horror, one morning they awoke to find the surviving daughter had left the house in the middle of the night and froze to death. Distraught, the mother committed suicide not long after that, leaving the Doctor alone, and slowly going mad in a small mill town. (All three deaths are confirmed in local town records, but the story here takes on a wilder, small town ghost story note. Some claim the Doctor tortures vagrants in the basement, or perhaps digs up the bodies of his family and preserves them to sit at the table.) For a history project in school, I decided to look up the actual history of the house, and as such was immersed in lore and legends for weeks, so when I "totally saw" the ghosts of the young girls, it was easy to explain it as a trick of the brain. I still trot it out as my big ghost story, and have been tempted more than once to write a book about it.

Ever since then though, I have been vaguely fascinated by the paranormal. Mostly in an amusement way, but I really enjoy books about the intersection of science and the unexplained (Mary Roach's Spook, and Will Storr versus the Supernatural are probably the best examples of this). The older I get, the more I feel badly about it though- being a consumer or programming based on paranormal research, gives money to the people perpetuating outright scams.

So Jezebelles and Jezebeaus, what "out there" stuff are you willing to suspend disbelief over? Anybody got any good ghost stories? Anything you feel sort of terrible about consuming? Let's get metaphysical up in here!

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