Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The End (?)

Well, it's been nearly a year since my last post. In that time, the best I could tell you about were some odd noises that might very easily be attributed to the wind or neighbors moving around. Nothing exciting, certainly. To close the book on the Great Ghost Adventure, I've moved. Not because I was scared or freaked out or anything; just because my old house I was living in is finished and I've moved back into it.

I wish Marty all the best. If he/she was truly a lost soul, perhaps he/she has found a way to his/her destination. If Marty was just a "recording" of previous events by means of whatever natural forces seem to gather in my apartment, then may the next tenant enjoy the reruns as much as I did.

As I gathered up the last of my boxes and cleaned up the place for the last time, I looked into the attic where I first encountered the phenomenon. I bade it a silent goodbye, as I do now to this blog.

So long, Marty, wherever you may be!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hello? What do you want?

A lot of folks have been asking me about the latest goings-on in my haunted mansion (that is, the three-room apartment I live in). Sadly, there hasn't been a lot happening lately. The attic door has stayed disappointingly shut. The creator of the footsteps has been resting. Only one bizarre occurrence has happened lately.
I was standing in my gnome-sized kitchen washing the dishes. With Palmolive (completely irrelevant detail). In the midst of scrubbing Velveeta macaroni & cheese residue from a pot, I sensed someone standing behind me. Before I could turn around to see, I felt three taps on my left shoulder. Expecting to see Josh or Susan there, about to ask me a deep, meaningful question such as "Do you have any mayonnaise?" or "Can I borrow a lime?" I turned around, gathering my deepest intellect for the forthcoming inquiry. When I turned around, neither Josh nor Susan was there. Instead, nobody was there. Nothing! Well, not nothing; the fridge and the toaster oven were right where I had left them. The point is, there was no physical person there who might have tapped my shoulder. But I indeed felt it; the sensation was still fading from my shoulder where I had been tapped as I searched around looking for the tapper. As I turned back around to the dishes for the final rinse of the mac 'n' cheese pot, I said "Welcome back, Marty." But Marty must be pissed off that I keep calling him (her?) Marty because he (she?) has been making himself (herself?) scarce lately otherwise.
Ah, well, I'll keep you updated. Meantime, I need to go to the store for more macaroni & cheese. Yum.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Well, it's been a while! After Hurricane Katrina I had absolutely no unusual activity in my apartment for a while. Until recently. About a month ago, the footsteps returned. Yesterday, Susan was visiting and noticed the infamous attic door was ajar. She asked if I had opened the door recently and I hadn't. I haven't opened the attic door in at least three months, but here it was, open, deadbolt unhooked and all!
This got me wondering. My friend Dean had taken that odd photo of my from room with the column of blue light a while back (sadly, he never made me a copy) and I was pondering if I might be able to do the same. I began taking random pictures of the house with my new iPhone (love it!). Most of the photos were just photos of rooms. Except for perhaps, one...

I didn't really know what to think when I saw the image, but it seems to me that there is a face or head noticeable in the lower left corner of the mirror. I decided to enhance the pic a little. Here's what it looks like using only the "Enhance" function in iPhoto on a Mac:

And here's a picture taken from the same angle a few minutes later. As you can see, nothing unusual in it:

So what's with the "face"? A trick of the light? An iPhone abberation? Is it Marty? I don't know for sure but it does seem odd that this face would chose to make a cameo appearance in this one picture and I couldn't reproduce the results later on. I'm sure there will be more to come!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Getting Annoying

Well, two days ago I come home and went to brush my teeth. I noticed the handle on the cold water tap was loose (I have those old-timey faucets- separate cold and hot taps). I noticed it was loose, so I tightened it and it was fine.
Yesterday, I woke up in the afternoon and went to brush my teeth again (dental hygeine is important). As I reached for the tap, I noticed there was nothing there! The handle was gone! I've looked everywhere for it. It's not on the floor, in the trash, behind the toilet, in the medicine cabinet or anywhere else. I know I didn't remove it. Greg had stayed the night before while I was at work and I asked him about it. He said he had noticed the handle was loose, but it was still present. Josh and Susan have no idea about what happened to it.
The only thing I can attribute its absence to is, you guessed it - the ghost!
Needless to say, the lack of a cold water handle is rather irritating.
Photos below!

The hot tap still intact. Posted by Picasa

The tap with the missing handle! Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 01, 2005

Hello? Who's There?

Well, the footsteps have started again! Yesterday I was sitting at my computer and I thought someone hade walked in. Josh and Susan are out of town, and I can hear Greg on his crutches coming up the steps a mile away. So I knew it couldn't be them. But the steps sounded like the were coming from the door right behind me, walking toward me. And of course, when I turned around no one was there.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Greg's "Incident"

Okay, so I was out of town in New York on vacation. Greg was staying at my place to watch the cat. He came to pick me up from the airport on Tuesday and told me he had had an "incident." I wasn't sure what he meant, I thought he had set fire to the carpet or something like that. No, he went on to tell me that the night before, he awoke with a start to feel the bed shaking on its own. The cat had been sleeping in the bed too, and had a startled expression that said "What the hell was that?"
Greg discounted the possibility of a seizure or anything like that, because he was perfectly lucid when he woke up. It wasn't a dream, because the cat felt it too, and besides he could still feel the vibrations after he woke up.
I took this as a significant story, because Greg is on of my more skeptical friends about that kind of stuff. The fact he reported it only affirms my assurance that I have a special "roommate." Now if only I can get Marty to pay half the rent...!

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Ghosts of the Past

June 7, 2005

It's been a while; sorry! I haven't had a whole lot of stuff go on. There have been a few noises of "indeterminate" origins and about 2 weeks ago I closed my front door and made sure it was unlocked because I was expecting Josh to come in later. When he arrived, I heard him knocking. The door was locked! I know I had left it unlocked.

Yesterday I was getting into my truck and nearby a girl was getting out of her car out front of my house. The girl asked me if I lived in that apartment, pointing to my balcony. I said I did, and she explained that she used to live there a while back. Her father lives downstairs and she was visiting him. I used the opportunity to ask her "I know this may sound a little wierd, but while you were living there, did you have any reason to believe the apartment might be haunted?"

She told me that during her stay there, she heard lots of strange noises, experienced doors opening and closing, and things moved around the room. On one occassion she watched a candle up and fall off a table all by itself. Sounded like the exact same experiences I've been having! So I'm not the only one! I was gratified to know that I wasn't just imagining things. So with the testimony of me, Susan, Josh, Dean and this girl Amy, I think I can unofficially say that my house is officially haunted!

Friday, April 08, 2005

Marty Shuffles His (Her?) Feet

I was laying (lying?) in bed, awake but just lazy. I heard someone open the door and walk in. Josh was bringing me a shirt he had bought but it didn't fit him. I was just lying (laying?) there - he thought I was asleep. I heard him leave and shut the door. Five minutes later I heard footsteps in the front room. But they didn't go anywhere, whoever it was sounded like they were standing there scraping feet on the carpet.
I called out "Hello? Josh? Susan? Anyone there?" The scraping went on for about 5 minutes.
No answer. I looked out to the room and no one was there! I asked Josh later if he or Susan had returned to my apartment after he had first come in. Neither one had. Apparently Marty got bored and was pacing the front room, looking for a playmate.
More updates as news breaks...

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Suspicious Silence

Well since I started writing to this blog last week, Marty has been eerily silent. It's as if it knows I'm paying attention and is deliberately keeping quiet here on the third floor. Or perhaps it's busy with some of the other tenants in the building. I keep expecting something to happen, but it hasn't. Maybe that's the key - just pay no mind to it and stuff happens (like so many things in life!). I f you think about it too hard, it gets all screwed up!
Will keep you advised...

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Josh and Susan Get Involved

Today was the first day in a week that I haven't heard footsteps in my apartment. The idea of having a ghost in my apartment doesn't bother me at all. At least it doesn't leave dirty dishes and laundry around, and it doen't eat my food. I've had worse roommates.
I went to work tonight and went to talk to Susan. She said the thinks the ghost paid them a visit today in Josh's apartment. They were asleep today and around 1:30 or so they woke up to the sound of dishes clanking around. She said Josh walked into his kitchen, thinking I had come to get back some plates he had borrowed. I wasn't there, being asleep in my own bed. But they could still hear the clanking sound. It was coming from the piece of attic that he has in his apartment, similar to mine. He walked into the attic part, and the noise stopped!
Josh later confirmed this story. He said he heard footsteps in his house, then the clanking dishes sound. Finding no one in the kitchen, he realized the noise was coming from the attic area. As he was getting his flashlight to check in there, the noise stopped and there was nothing in the attic when he opened the door!

My attic. The little speck of light is where the roof joins the floor. No other door but the one I was standing in to take this picture. Posted by Hello

The Ghost Gets Noisy

For the last five days, Every time I'm sitting in my apartment, I hear footsteps walking around. I keep expecting Josh or Susan to walk in (Josh moved into apartment #5 in January and his girlfriend stays there a lot. They're good friends of mine from work. We're constantly in each other's apartments.) But no, all I hear are footsteps. No one there. Sometimes they're coming from another room, the bedroom, the bathroom, the closet, the kitchen. Sometimes they sound like they're right in the same room with me. I've yet to capture anything with the camera trick Dean used.
Two days ago, on Wednesday, my wife came by to drop off my cell phone I had left at her house. We got to talking about my ghost, and how several people have commented that there's "something" going on in the attic area. So she asked to see the attic. I opened up the door and showed her the attic. Nothing, as I expected.
Hmph! she grunted, unimpressed. So I closed the door to the attic, and locked the deadbolt, pushing the latch thing down. I turned around to talk to her and right behind me I hear click! I turned around and looked at the door. The latch on the deadbolt was pushed up! I made sure I pushed it down! Now it's turned up! What the fuck?

In the Morning- A Picture!

The next day, I got home from work around 6:30 am or so. Dean was asleep on the couch. He woke up and asked how my night was, what's new, etc. I said 'Fine" and asked what happened with the ghost thing last night.
"Let me show you something," he said.
He pulled out his PDA, a Sony Clie with a built in camera. he pulled up a picture of my living room. There was my desk, my computer, the coffee table, the ottoman, the lamp... and in the middle of it all, a column of blue light standing right in the middle of the room!
"What the fuck is that?" I asked him.
"I don't know, but that's what I took a picture of."
"You saw this?" I asked, incredulous.
"No, I didn't. It just occured to me to pull out my little camera on this thing and look around. I was panning the room, looking at the screen and I noticed this in the frame. It wasn't till I moved the camera away that I realized something was there, so I panned back, and there it was. So I took this picture."
Holy shit!
I've seen photos and stuff on TV and the internet of that kind of stuff, and I figured that they were special effects or atmospheric phenomenon or hoaxes. But this was a simple picture taken with a PDA! And Dean has no graphics software to edit any special effects into it. And I know that there are no atmospheric phenomena going on in my living room!
I even took several pictures of the room from similar and different angles with the same lighting and with different lighting at the same time of day and at different times of day. None of them reproduced the blue light column in Dean's picture.
Unfortunately, Dean moved back to Ohio the next week and forgot to give me the picture. His cell phone is cut off and I have no way to contact him. Dean, if you read this, please send me the picture! renegator@hotmail.com
Maybe I really do have a ghost in my house!

I'm Not The Only One

In January 2005, my friend Dean moved out of his apartment and was moving back to Ohio. He needed somewhere to stay till he actually left New Orleans, so I said he could stay with me. He stayed for three weeks. No problem.

One day I was at work and Dean called me on my cell phone.
D: Hey, how's it going?
Me: Pretty good. What's up?
D: Not much, but I have a question for you.
Me: OK.
D: Who's that guy in the picture on your fireplace?
Me: That's my dad.
D: Is he dead?
Me: Yeah he died about 10 years ago. Why?
D: 'Cause I think he's here.
Me: (Thoughtful pause) ...I beg your pardon?
D: Yeah I spent the day at the museum, and when I got home, it felt like someone else was here. It just feels like someone else is here in your apartment. And every time I look at that photograph on the fireplace, it just seems to be glowing.

Oh great; Dean's flaking out on me! I think to myself.
Me: Well, are you ok?
D: Oh yeah, I'm fine. I'll try to find out what I can and call you back.
Me: OK, you do that. Let me know what happens with that. Bye!

Terrific. Dean's a flake.

Me: Hello?
D: Does the name "Marty" mean anything to you?
Me: No. Why?
D: Cause I still feel this presence in your apartment, and the name "Marty" keeps popping into my head. You sure it doesn't mean anything to you?
Me: Well, my father's grandfather, my great-grandfather, was Martin, who came here from Ireland. Other than that, no.
D: Well, ok, I'll try to see if I can find out any more.
Me: OK, you do that. Let me know what happens with that. Bye.

Hmm. I recall the incident with the door a couple of months ago. There's no way that door could have opened by itself. I wonder if these two events are related? Maybe there is something to Dean's story. I've never thought of him as the type to be much of a flake. I wonder what he'll tell me in the morning?

The picture of my dad on the fireplace. Kitchen in background. Posted by Hello

The Cat

After that incident, I didn't really think too much about it. But one thing I did notice was that my cat had a bizarre preoccupation with the panelled wall that the door to the attic is in. He would spend hours trying to climb the wall, pawing at no-see-ums, and just staring at it. Every time I opened the door to get something in the attic space he would clamor to get in there. Again, I didn't think much of it, other than I had a crazy cat.

The infamous wall Posted by Hello

In The Beginning...

OK - here's how it all started. I moved into my new apartment after getting separated from my wife. It's a cool place at City Park Avenue and Allard Blvd in New Orleans. My apartment is on the third floor, it apparently used to be attic space that was converted into two apartments. I live in Apartment #4. Also on the third floor is apartment #5. When I moved in, #5 remained vacant for about four months, though the real estate people would show it to prospective renters all the time.

In my front room (the living room) there is a wall with heavy wood panelling. A door in this wall leads to the unconverted attic area which I use for storage. I'll post pictures on here soon.

I work at night, so one day in November 2004 I was asleep, when a sound woke me up. I knew I didn't imagine it because my cat heard it too. I saw him staring intently into the living room from my bedroom. The sound was a door opening, and scraping against carpet. At first it figured it was the real estate agent showing the other apartment. But then I realized that Apartment #5's door doesn't sound like that. The only door I've heard that makes that sound is the one that leads into my attic. Not only that, but that is the only door that really latches well (it's an old house), so you have to actually turn the knob and push it against the carpet to open it. It doesn't blow open from the wind.

Realizing that someone had to open that door, I jumped out of bed and walked into the living room. Sure enough, the door was standing wide open! I checked to see if anyone had broken into my apartment, but the front door was closed and locked, the balcony door was locked, and the window was shut. Could someone have come in from the attic? I got a flash light and checked. Nope, no doors or hatches. the only way in or out was that door! So who opened it?

Not one to put too much credence in ideas of poltergeists and haunted houses, I went to the hardware store and bought a deadbolt lock for the door. Done and done. That should settle it. No more mystery catburglars coming into my house!

Or so I figured.