Episode 74: Your Urban Legends VIII - Grandma Extravaganza

It’s GRANDMAS GRANDMAS GRANDMAS. All the grandmas! From demon grandmas in Texas, motivational ghosts (You Only Ghost Always), to helpful anti-murder spirits. We also debate the habitat for Ghost Charizards, ask if you have to pay finders’ fees for ghosts, and enjoy some Ohio color commentary from Editor Eric. Then we all cried over Amigo, the Stone Dog. #stonedoggo.

This week’s recommendation corner: Potterless, Waystation, Join the Party, and TV Party!



Dashlane - Never forget another password! Download Dashlane for free at dashlane.com/spirits, and new users can use the code “spirits” for 10% off a pro plan.


Find Us Online

If you like Spirits, help us grow by spreading the word! Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, & Goodreads, and review us on Apple Podcasts to help new listeners find the show. You can support us on Patreon to unlock bonus audio content, director’s commentaries, custom recipe cards, and so much more. Merch is for sale at spiritspodcast.com/merch.


Amanda: Welcome to Spirits podcast, a boozy tour through myths and legends. Every week, we pour a drink and learn about a new story from around the world. I'm Amanda.

Julia: I'm Julia.

Amanda: And this is episode 74. Your urban legends part 4: grandma extravaganza.

Julia: Grandma extravaganza.

Amanda: It is a true grandma extravaganza.

Julia: Oh, it's so good.

Amanda: It's wonderful. I can't. I can't wait for you guys to listen to it.

Julia: I love this one so much. There's like ... It's like a roller coaster of emotions, this episode.

Amanda: I know. Do you know who brings us only upward in kind of good emotion?

Julia: Our new patrons.

Amanda: Our newest patrons! Valerie, Gray and Meghan, welcome! Thank you for joining us.

Julia: Welcome.

Amanda: And as always, not welcome, but ... It's like when a friend comes back into your house and helps themselves to water or something, and you're like, "Welcome back." Like, you know what you're doing. I'm so glad you're here

Julia: You already pulled the snacks out of the drawer and we appreciate that.

Amanda: Exactly, that's our supporting producer level patrons. Neil, Philip, Julie, Christina, Josh, Eeyore, Jessica, Maria, Cammy, Ryan, Mercedes, Phil Fresh, and Debra.

Julia: You all have stone dog companions, you just don't know about them yet.

Amanda: So beautiful. And thank you to our legend level patron. Those folks who enjoy the physical stuff club here with Spirits podcast. Bucky, Rachel, Sandra, Ashley Maria, Leanne, Ashley, and Cassie ... You guys never get scared by a demonic grandma when you go to get water in the middle of the night.

Julia: It's very true. I know, you see her and you're like, "Yo, what's up Grandma?"

Amanda: You're totally cool with it. Julia, what are we drinking this episode?

Julia: Well, local hometown stories, local beers, Amanda.

Amanda: It's summer beer time. It's pretty exciting.

Julia: I picked up a six pack of the Bronx Brewery summer pail ale with lemon peel, because I know you like citrus.

Amanda: I do, I love citrus. If anyone wants to bake me lemon bars .... Nope, probably not fair. If you want to recommend lemon bars for me to buy in New York City ...

Julia: I love lemon bars.

Amanda: Might be my favorite pastry actually.

Julia: Yeah. Yeah, probably. Or like a lemon merengue pie. Probably my favorite.

Amanda: You know, I don't think I've ever had one. Julia's giving me very, uh, I don't know how to describe this, very interested eyes.

Julia: Good to know.

Amanda: Before we hop into the episode, we want to thank our sponsor this week: Dashlane, which is a free app and browser extension that makes sure you never forget another password. They make payments and identity and password generation really, really simple. And you can go to dashlane.com/spirits, that's d-a-s-h-l-a-n-e .com/spirits to download it for free and find out more.

Julia: And we'll tell you more about it later in the episode.

Amanda: Absolutely. Oh, and we also wanted to tell you guys that we actually have a new merch store. So, we have new items coming soon. If you go to the same URL, spritispodcast.com/merch, you can see our fancy new store.

Julia: I'm excited to see it because I didn't know about it until you just told me there.

Amanda: It's very pretty, the layout is very clean, and we have some new items in the works. So, if you have ideas and requests or illustrator recommendations, now is the time to let us know on Twitter. We're at Spirits Podcast.

Julia: Yes, tweet at us. Tweet at us your beautiful art.

Amanda: We love seeing it.

Julia: And beautiful suggestions obviously.

Amanda: Well, without further ado, enjoy Spirits podcast episode 74: your urban legends part nine.

[Theme music]

Amanda: Yeah guys, another month, another hometown urban legend roundup. We were just talking how we call these hometowns, that's what we call these episodes, but they are titled, "your urban legends" which is what they are.

Julia: Well I think it makes our listeners feel more special.

Amanda: It does, yeah, 'cause it's yours. And to us, it's your hometowns.

Eric: Gotta have that secret internal code though.

Amanda: I know, you gotta have that secret sort code.

Julia: It's our production code.

Amanda: Uh oh, people are gonna hack into the main frame now.

Eric: No other episodes have secret codes. We should start doing secret codes for every episode.

Amanda: I have one creepy legend and one cool legend, and I'm wondering who wants to go first.

Eric: Well it sounds like you should go first with one of your two.

Julia: Why don't you start with creepy and then we'll segue into cool. How about that?

Amanda: Start with creepy, go cool?

Julia: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Amanda: Alright. Well, here we go.

Amanda: An email we got from Jessica ... So she says: "In a previous episode of Spirits you asked for creepy cool stories from grandparents. It just so happens that the only real ghost story I know was told to me by my mom's friend Cindy's grandma when I was about ten years old. She lived in a little one story house in the woods." Good start Jessica.

Julia: Good start.

Eric: Excellent.

Amanda: Way out in the middle of nowhere in Texas, half a mile or so down a dirt road from the nearest house and an hour from the closest grocery store or gas station. Grandma was really sweet but a little creepy... Sounds amazing, fair.

Eric: I just wanna point out, that's very far from a gas station.

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: Like you are really in the middle of nowhere if you're an hour away from gasoline.

Amanda: That's concerning.

Eric: Especially in Texas.

Amanda: I know, right? It's pretty hard to throw a rock and not hit a gas station in Texas. Well, grandma here was really sweet but a little creepy. She was just as likely to tell you about gruesome murder than knit you an afghan. This is the greatest grandma of all time, besides mine. "She told us this story..."

Eric: And mine, and probably Julia's.

Amanda: Okay, apart from our three living grandmas, this grandma's the best. She told Jessica and her friends this story as the complete truth "when we were staying at her house one dark and stormy night," seriously. "It came up because the weather reminded her of the night she was visited by a ghost for the first time."

Julia: "For the first time" I would be a little worried there.

Amanda: I mean, I'm assuming it's like one of many ghost experiences that grandma had in her life, or it could be the same ghost multiple times. We'll see.

Amanda: The story begins when grandma received a call from family to let her know that her favorite aunt who lived several hours away was very ill. But, she couldn't go visit her right away because of heavy rains, high wind, and tornados in the area. So that night, grandma had gone to bed early exhausted from worry. Her husband Frank usually stayed up later watching TV, which I think all grandparents do. This is like a grandparent code.

Eric: Gotta catch up on MASH.

Amanda: Or watch the Mets lose, heyo.

Julia: Ooh.

Amanda: Frank made sure the lights were turned off and the doors locked when he came to bed. This night was no different. Sometime after her husband had come to bed, Grandma was woken up by someone calling her name. She clearly heard someone saying, "Nonie, go look the doors and windows." Half asleep, she mumbled back, "Frank locked the doors, it's time for bed," and doze back off.

Amanda: Again, a voice woke her saying, "Nonie, Nonie, go lock the doors and windows." Sleeping less soundly this time, Grandma opened her eyes and saw her aunt standing at the foot of her bed. Her aunt told her a third time, "Nonie, go lock the doors and windows," and the aunt turned, and walked out of the room.

Julia: Oh, do the thing. Do the thing!

Amanda: Half asleep, Grandma got out of bed and walked down the hall in the direction her aunt had gone. But, feeling foolish once she got to the kitchen and now fully awake, realized that her aunt couldn't possibly be in her house. She thought she must be dreaming. Her aunt was the only one in the family to call her "Nonie", a special nickname she had given her as a child. And her worry about her aunt must have sparked the dream, she thought.

Amanda: Still, since she was already up, she checked the back door. Sure enough, Frank had forgotten to lock it.

Julia: Dammit, Frank.

Eric: Frank!

Amanda: God damn Frank, come on. So, Nonie walked through the house locking all the doors and windows, ending with a dead bolt on the front door. As the storm continued outside, Grandma fell back asleep, thinking about her aunt.

Amanda: The next morning, the rain had stopped and Cindy's grandparents were woken by a loud banging on their front door. The police had come to see if they were okay because sometimes in the night, their closest neighbor had killed his wife and children with an ax.

Julia: Oh!

Amanda: And the neighbors on the other side had called the police when he showed up on their porch covered in blood.

Julia: Oh no!

Amanda: The police pointed out footprints in the muddy soil leading around the side of Grandma's house...

Julia: Oh no!

Amanda: And told her how lucky she was that he couldn't find a way in. The windows and doors had been locked.

Julia: Ahhh!

Amanda: A little while later, Grandma got a call telling her that her aunt had passed away the night before.

Julia: That is a rollercoaster of a day that that woman had.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: That is intense.

Julia: Oh boy!

Amanda: I just really loved the kind of defeating of the normal horror movie stereotype here, where Grandma has people in the house with her, they have a safe routine, you know, someone is looking out for her and not haunting her, and it ends up arguably saving their lives. So, it's too bad that the aunt passed away, but it sounds like whatever instinct of self preservation or ghosts came together to save their lives that night. It was really fortuitous.

Julia: That stresses me out. That story stressed me out. But also, it's ironic because I also have a creepy Texas grandma story.

Amanda: Whoa! Who's this from?

Julia: This is from listener Meghan.

Amanda: What up Meghan? You and Jessica should be friends.

Julia: Apparently. And Meghan says "My little sister Hannah lives with her grandmother in a rural area about an hour out from Houston. The houses there are large and spread apart. It's the certain neighborhood you don't walk around when it gets dark because packs of coyotes roam the streets and every once in a while, an alligator has been known to wash up on the bayou that runs behind her grandma's house. Hannah and I are only a year apart and always have been thick as thieves. She would tell me everything, including the strange thing she would frequently encounter. Ironically, this is why I've always been skeptical about the supernatural. She once convinced me that she really had seen the pink Power Ranger riding a tiger, and why I had the only supernatural experience I ever want to have.

Julia: It started with one of Hannah's stories. She was a night owl even at five, and would creep into the dark kitchen late at night to get something to drink. One night, she turned to go back to her room only to see a dark silhouette of her grandma standing by the back door. She called to her grandma, but as the silhouette turned to her, she saw it had glowing red eyes. Frightened, she hurried off to her room before it was fully turned, only realizing as she lay in bed that she could hear her grandma's snores from across the house."

Julia: Amanda's giving me a horrified look.

Julia: "A year later, we had one of our many sleepovers at her house. I was seven going on eight and Hannah was six. Hannah woke me because she was getting up for a drink, and not wanting to stay in the dark room alone, I followed her to the kitchen. As I was waiting for her, I suddenly felt my hair raise and turned to see the silhouette of her grandmother standing down the hall. Again, the loud snores of Hannah's grandma could be heard from across the house. But this time, the silhouette was still facing away. Terrified, I firmly grabbed my sister's hand and dragged her back to the bedroom where we spent the rest of the night hiding under the covers with a flashlight."

Amanda: Smart.

Julia: There's a P.S. to the story. Several years ago, my sister also got a Pomeranian, Chihuahua mix that I've always found a little off-putting. He acts very strangely, even for a small dog, and Hannah has told me on several occasions when she turned around from getting a drink only to see him sitting a few feet away, his eyes glowing red.

Amanda: No!

Julia: She loves this dog very much, and he sleeps in bed with her.

Amanda: That is way too much like a weeping angel for comfort.

Julia: Yep.

Amanda: You got a Texas grandma for us?

Eric: I unfortunately don't have a Texas grandma.

Julia: So disappointing.

Eric: But I do have a story that as soon as I saw it in the inbox, I knew a bit about it.

Amanda: Whoa.

Julia: Tell me more, tell me more.

Eric: This email is from Ashley, and is titled, "The legend of gore orphanage". "I'm a big fan of the podcast, I would like to share a local legend from Ohio with you guys. I'm especially interested if editor Eric knows anything about this myth."

Amanda: You do!

Eric: I do. "I'm from a small town in Northern Ohio called Vermilion." Very lovely over there in Vermilion.

Julia: I'm loving the Ohio color commentary, please keep it coming.

Eric: That's me, not her. Yeah, the mid west is a lovely place to visit any time of year.

Julia: Oh no.

Eric: "About ten minutes from town in the middle of nowhere, is a dead end road by the name of Gore Orphanage Road. Despite what horrors the name might imply, the gore is just a narrow stretch of land. Along this road, there are ruins of a large building known as the Light of Hope Orphanage."

Julia: Nope, already noping.

Amanda: Uh oh.

Eric: "Even in its former life as Swift Manor in the mid 1800s-"

Julia: Even worse.

Eric: "Ghost stories were abound."

Julia: These are all really terrible names.

Amanda: Manors are nothing except for more rooms to have tragedies in.

Julia: Also, Swift Manor sounds like it's gonna be a swift death for you if you walk in there.

Amanda: Yeah, or like Jonathan Swift but not just much better. Heyo.

Julia: That really got to you Eric, huh?

Eric: It's just I wasn't expecting it. I didn't know what to do with it. There's not really anything to bounce off of that one, it's just, there it is. "One of the tenants of the manor was known to even perform spirit seances on the property. From what I was told, the Light of Hope Orphanage burned to the ground in the early 1900s with the children trapped inside, leaving nothing but ruin in the fire's wake. It is said that if you go to the ruins, you can hear the screams of the children that died in the fire."

Julia: Ouch.

Eric: "My mom actually had an experience here when she was younger. She has always been fascinated by the paranormal, and dragged her friends to Gore Orphanage road to do some ghost hunting when she was in high school. After a few hours of wandering around the property in broad daylight, they attributed the sounds they heard to the nearby freeway, figured it was all just fake, and headed back to her friend's car. When my mom walked around the back of the car, she noticed something. On the rear windshield there were a set of small, child sized hand prints covering it. When she told one of her friends about them, they heard what sounded like a girl giggling. They didn't bother to check the area; they all slammed the car doors and Scooby Doo'd out of there."

Julia: Smart.

Amanda: Smart.

Julia: Smart fucking move.

Eric: That's what you gotta do.

Amanda: Listen, Spirits listeners have pretty good instincts, even the stories that you shared that are from your parents and grandparents ... Everyone like knows what the fuck to do.

Julia: That's why they're all still alive and with us.

Amanda: Yup. Exactly.

Eric: She finishes with, "To this day, she says that it was one of the scariest things she's ever experienced."

Julia: I do not blame her. That sounds creepy as fuck.

Eric: I've never been to Gore Orphanage, but I know lots of people in college that would go there in the middle of night and just walk around. I thought that there was an actual building still there, so I don't know if that's wrong, or me mis-remembering or the fact that I was in college almost ten years ago and it might now be ruins.

Amanda: Yeah, true.

Eric: But, it is definitely a place that I've been told from multiple people that there are some weird, spooky children hauntings going on there.

Amanda: I mean, you're asking for trouble I think, naming a place "Gore Orphanage road".

Julia: Or Swift, or Gorge. Just give us that at least.

Amanda: Yeah, then you're-

Julia: Dammit, Ohio.

Eric: Also, like, not that ... Obviously you want a good name for your orphanage, but "Light of Hope Orphanage" just sounds like it's gonna take a left turn.

Julia: That sounds like the orphanage that you pick the anti Christ up from.

Eric: It does. It seems like it would be the orphanage in the Omen.

Julia: Yeah, I have a kind of similar ... I don't if there are urban legends around it. I wonder actually if listeners from the west of Ireland could chime in. But my Irish grandmother is from a town called Tuam, T-u-a-m, which is like half an hour outside of Galway, which is on the western side of Ireland. It's a gorgeous part of town. And, there was a scandal a couple of years ago where a kind of mass grave of children was found, and there's still kind of piecing together where that actually came from. But, part of it was a kind of home for unwed mothers that they would end up doing some messed up stuff instead of raising kids or giving them up for adoption.

Julia: So, it's so fresh that perhaps there haven't been any legends that have sprung up around it, but I was reminded immediately of that kind of continuing story that unfolds as we were listening to this myth.

Amanda: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Eric: Yeah, for sure.

Julia: On that super happy note Amanda, do you have another story to tell?

Amanda: I do. I have a cool story, I have a cool story. This one comes from Naslee who's from Turkey. And they say, "I love your podcast. Thank you for all the great stories you share with the world." Thank you. "I have a story to share with you about an apartment my grandma used to live in, and the motivational ghost who haunted there."

Julia: We're just doing a lot of grandmas to this episode, huh?

Amanda: People, call your grandparents if you're fortunate enough to have them. Call your elderly neighbors and friends and ask them if they have unusual stories. They're gonna be happy to tell them to you I bet.

Eric: I mean I think we just have the subtitle for the episode which is "Grandma Extravaganza".

Julia: Grandma Extravaganza.

Amanda: So, Naslee's grandmother used to live in an apartment building with a motivational ghost. The building was an old one, only four floors.

Eric: A motivational ghost?

Amanda: Motivational, motivational.

Julia: You heard right.

Amanda: That Dave Ramsay. So, building. Old. Only four floors, and there were at least three sightings of a ghost who likes to ... Alright, now can I get some predictions please as to what this motivational ghost likes to motivate people to do?

Julia: Get their cardio in.

Amanda: Okay, great. Eric?

Julia: Eat a well balanced diet.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: I don't know what a motivational ... I mean, just live your best life is what I think-

Julia: The ghost encourages people to YOLO.

Eric: Well, maybe it's like a, it's like a yoga ghost. It's telling you to really get in communion with nature.

Amanda: I thought that you were making up a new acronym to replace YOLO, which was yoga. You only ghost always because ghosts are forever! And are sure that's not gonna be our subtitle? 'Cause that's pretty good too.

Amanda: We have some pretty good Twitter poll contenders.

Amanda: Well anyway, this is better than I could've expected. Naslee's grandmother had a ghost growing up who likes to motivate girls and women while they study. That's very sweet! So, there used to be an old little Greek cemetery in the place of the house, so where the house used to be. And after World War 1, all of the Greek people left the area, so the cemetery became deserted and then eventually demolished to build this apartment building. They started living in this house when Naslee's mom started university. And after she graduated and got a house on her own, the grandma continued living there for about 20 more years.

Amanda: "One day my mom came home and Grandma was away visiting some relatives," so the mom was on her own. "She locked the door and went to the living room to study for her test the next day. She was revising her notes, lying down on the sofa, just like all tired and bored students, fell asleep after a short while. She woke up to a man's voice calling her name softly next to her ear." Naslee wrote her mom's name and says in a parenthetical, "This is pronounced like the German word for the school, by the way." Which, sorry, that doesn't help me.

Julia: Doesn't help me.

Amanda: One Google trip later, a man's voice called next to Naslee's mom, called her name softly next to her ear. "Soule, Soule." "She could feel the man's breath on her cheek. A little sleepy at first, she thought it was her uncle. However, later she realized that she was home alone and bolted awake. She checked the door, only to find it unlocked and unchained, though she was sure she had locked it earlier." Always lock your doors, people.

Julia: Always lock your door.

Amanda: "She checked the entire house in fear of an intruder," I hope holding some kind of weapon. That's how you gotta do it. "but there was no other sign of any mortal life around. Needless to say, she stayed at a nearby friend's that night." Very smart.

Julia: I would too.

Amanda: "Another story comes from our next door neighbor. She was attending medical school at the time, and she was studying for a hard test that night. She got really frustrated with the particular subject, and she said she was nearly in tears when she heard an old man's voice saying, 'Don't worry about it my child, don't fear'. When she looked up, she saw an old, bearded man smiling outside the window. The problem is, she lived on the fourth floor and there was no balcony."

Julia: Yep.

Amanda: "After smiling at her for about a minute," which is too long for a smile.

Julia: Way too long, ghost! Way too long.

Amanda: "The ghost disappeared with a beam of light."

Julia: Ooh.

Amanda: "The last sight of the motivating ghost comes from me. I was about the age of ten, staying with my grandma for the weekend. It was past my bedtime, a few hours past my bedtime. But I was reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban for the first time, so I did not put down my book to go to sleep, but rather continued reading under my blanket with a flashlight." Which, side note, I did that pretty much every night as a kid. Loved it.

Amanda: "After a few hours, I got up to go to the bathroom. When I got in the corridor, I saw a figure holding a candle light at the door of my grandma's room. I thought there had been a blackout and my grandma lit some candles," and because she'd been using a flashlight, I guess it was possible. So, Naslee walked toward the light to get one for going to the bathroom with. "Before I arrived, the candle was blown out" and the figure walked inside her grandma's room. Naslee went into the room only to find her grandma sleeping. "I got scared and woke her up, and she told me about the stories that my mom and our neighbor experienced in the house. She thought the ghost took pity on me for reading with so little light, and was trying to help me by getting me a candle. Later I learned that there was a girls' school about 200 years ago right near the apartment, and one of the teachers was in charge of going to villages and convincing parents to send their daughters to school. It's likely that his grave was in the cemetery below our house, and he's still trying to help girls get education, since he was only viewed by girls or women when they were studying or reading."

Julia: This guy's like the ghost of Dumbledore, what the fuck?

Amanda: Yeah, I think it's so lovely. Right? Like a reverse putter-outer. Like bringing light to people who are studying and then visiting them when they're home. I think that's so sweet.

Eric: I like the idea of just like, a ghost ... Like a kid dropping their book on the way home from school and not noticing it and the ghost just kind of like carrying the book and setting it on their desk, just making sure they get all their studies done.

Julia: Aw.

Amanda: Yeah, or like pushing their flashcards closer and closer to the edge of the desk like, "Come on, come on, it's time."

Julia: I love this. It's very sweet.

Amanda: And actually, I had a super short anecdote as well to add onto this. Another email from someone called Heart who has a very helpful spirit that I also think was so cute. It was a helpful spirit in the house, they're not quite sure how it got there since the house was newly constructed when Heart moved in, but the ghost was pretty chill, usually just causing some footsteps on the ceiling, messing with the cats, moving stuff around. But a week ago, Heart was looking for a lost wallet, and their dog started barking like he does when he sees a person he doesn't recognize.

Amanda: "He stopped unusually quickly, and when I went downstairs to investigate, there was no one around, and the dog looked confused." And Heart's wallet was at the bottom of the stairs, laid out on a step like somebody placed it there, even though they were alone in the house. "Is there any way I can say 'thank you' to this spirit?" Heart aks. "I'd really like to give it a gift, but I'm not sure what ghosts are into these days, and all I can find online is how to get rid of them."

Julia: What are those damn ghosts into these days?

Amanda: So guys, can we help Heart out? I don't know. My mind goes to DomaVoi, and just like bread and milk. Like that's never gonna be bad for a spirit.

Julia: Yeah, leave out some stuff. They'll probably like it.

Eric: I was gonna say cookies and milk.

Amanda: Yeah.

Julia: It's Santa Clause. It's the ghost of Santa.

Amanda: Maybe a dollar, I don't know.

Eric: A dollar is not helpful. Why would a dollar be helpful? IT's not gonna ... The ghost can just, doesn't need money.

Julia: Give it one of those gold coins so it can pay its fare across the river Styx.

Amanda: That's not bad, that's not bad.

Eric: Yeah, there's something.

Julia: One of those Sacagawea coins.

Amanda: I asked someone for change the other day and they gave me a golden dollar. And I was like-

Julia: How dare they.

Amanda: Who are you? Where do you think I'm from? Jules, before you tell your next story, why don't we all get a refill?

Julia: That sounds good.

[Theme music]

Amanda: Julia, we talk often about spirits on the show.

Julia: Yes we do.

Amanda: We talk often about stuff that will come and steal your things, your house, your wife, your children in the middle of the night maybe.

Julia: Yep.

Amanda: And, I, whenever possible, want to minimize the chance that something is gonna steal something of mine in my life.

Julia: That's fair.

Amanda: You know what I mean? So, when I found out about Dashlane, I was super excited because it is a very beautiful app and a browser extension for your desktop computer or laptop that saves all your passwords so you never have to remember new passwords for new sites, or like, "Oh my god, this was in middle school days, what was my middle school password? Uh, oh no. Author, women, girl, friend, like who knows."

Julia: That sounds really useful because I have a bad brain sometimes and I forget my passwords all the time.

Amanda: I know, or like, I don't know why I haven't memorized my credit card number because I've had the same credit card for like four years.

Julia: Why haven't you? I'm sorry.

Amanda: I know, it's actually probably for the best. But, Dashlane saves your credit card info, it saves your address, your phone number, your email. Like all that stuff that you have to repetitively fill out, like freaking four times a day, it saves for you. So, it is super encrypted, it's super high tech, and you can manage, you can update those things when you change your address to change it one time in Dashlane, and then you can fill it out whenever you have to go to a form. And it's the best.

Julia: And Amanda, as a podcast, you and I and editor Eric share a bunch of accounts to run for Spirits. It's hard to remember your own passwords let alone the Spirits passwords. So, this is so useful to us as podcasters or anyone who's trying to run a business that has a bunch of shared accounts.

Amanda: Absolutely. And Dashlane is free to use, so everyone you should go right now to dashlane.com/spirits to download again, the app if you're on mobile, or the desktop, laptop app and browser extension. And you can actually use the code "spirits" to get ten percent off a premium membership for new users if you want to upgrade to a premium membership.

Julia: And who doesn't want a premium membership?

Amanda: I know, the premium thing is just better.

Julia: It always is.

Amanda: It just is. So thank you again to Dashlane. They've made our lives substantially easier over the last month. I have four Patreon accounts, four!

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: Three podcasts and a personal account. It's crazy.

Julia: It is too many passwords. Thank you, Dashlane.

Amanda: Thank you Dashlane for making sure that none of our online info gets stolen by gremlins or grandmas.

Julia: Yeah. Gremlins or grandmas.

Amanda: So that's dashlane.com/spirits, d-a-s-h-l-a-n-e.com/spirits with the code "spirits" getting you ten percent off a premium membership for new users.

Julia: Do it up.

Amanda: Thanks, Dashlane.

Julia: Okay, so my story is from a listener named Petra, and the subject line was "My ghost stories, and appreciation of you Cats" and I read it as "your cats" and I was like, "We have cats?" We definitely-

Eric: The Spirits team cats.

Amanda: We definitely have a ghost cat.

Julia: We do, we do. Amanda owns the ghost cat.

Eric: We do, we confirmed that. It's canon.

Amanda: Yes. So Petra says, "Hey. I just finished binging all your episodes," nice. "your home town college ghost stories episodes got me thinking about my own experience which, to be honest, are far too many for comfort. These are the three most impactful ones told as quickly as my quick break will allow. I hope you enjoy. Is 'enjoy' the right word here? I hope you imagine these and react in a satisfying manner, words are hard." They are.

Eric: You're at least one of those things, for sure.

Amanda: Petra says, "I saw my first ghost as a young child. It was dark, it was always dark in this hallway, especially in winter. I remember blundering around as I usually did, using pencils as dolls and playing at the entrance to this hallway. After a few moments, I looked up and there it stood shrouded in flame and growling loudly at me. But I wasn't afraid, and I knew it was there to protect me. Pokemon had taught me so well. Charizards aren't inherently evil." That's just a fucking great line, I love that.

Julia: Oh my gosh. And wait, was it a humanoid or a dog? Like what was the figure?

Amanda: It just said "it".

Julia: Wow.

Eric: Meaning it was a Charizard.

Julia: I guess it was a Charizard.

Amanda: It was a ghost Charizard. I'm into it. It's fine.

Eric: Where was this again?

Amanda: In a dark hallway in her house.

Eric: Uh, nope.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: That should be like in an old castle or some kind of stone structure. This doesn't seem like the kind of thing that's in a house.

Amanda: So, she continues, "That as an adult feels ridiculous to relay, but at the time it was so completely real to a young, loner child who is allowed to watch Pokemon and then get lost in their own imagination. I think the next mystical experience was laying in bed and waking up ti a ghostly hand reaching from the canopy to touch my hand before disappearing. I felt warm, calm, and the next day we found out my great grandmother had died that night."

Julia: Wow.

Eric: It's a lot of difference so far. It's like two very different ghost things.

Julia: Yeah, for sure.

Amanda: Well she starts the next section with, "The last, I almost hesitate to put into words as it was traumatizing and truly terrifying."

Eric: Oh boy.

Amanda: So, two good experiences and then the traumatizing one. Which is like our brand. "I was 20 and not super great when I started to have waking nightmares, which, while scary, would quickly dissipate when I told myself I was just tired. I also had sleep paralysis and proper nightmares. One night, after taking hours to get to sleep, I experienced the most intense vision of someone dragging me across a dark field while I fought against them. And when I woke up, I was piled in the furthest corner of my bed, North on the compass. The door was locked, all of my electronics unplugged and turned off, and my body had bruises from the struggle. No one in the house at the time had heard anything. Thankfully, nothing like this has ever happened again. I did what any rational person would do and made salt barriers around all the ways into my room, and told whatever was in my room to 'Get the fuck out'."

Amanda: And she ends it on kind of a nice note, which is, "Thank you so much for being unabashedly feminist, powerful, funny and nerdy. I love your podcast and have been telling people I know about it. As a queer, fem human, it's been so refreshing to hear men, women and non-binary folk along with the general normalization of queerness after a year of respectful, but straight podcast listening." Thank you, Petra.

Julia: Thank you very much Petra. Sometimes you get tired of all that straight, am I right?

Amanda: Yeah.

Julia: That sounds like such an interesting array of ghost experiences. My great grandmother passed away when I was maybe eight or nine on Halloween which was her favorite holiday. And, she was super into Halloween, super decorated the house, loved scaring kids, loved giving out candy. She was a fuckin' badass. And, I remember in the morning waking up with a kind of like, I don't know, melancholy but protected sort of ... Accepting something that I didn't really understand. And, it may have been revisionist kind of in the past, but that anecdote is really vivid for me.

Amanda: I think there's always been something a little relatable about feeling a connection to the spirit world, especially when people you know and love are the ones who are passing on.

Julia: Exactly, and even if ... Regardless of your stance on ghosts as a real thing or not, you are adjusting to a new reality, right? Like when someone you love passes away or leaves or what have you, it is a new world that you're waking up into. And so, that completely makes sense to me that people will wake up having had an experience or a memory or something uncanny occurring that sort of marks that transition.

Amanda: Eric, how about you give us your last story?

Eric: I can definitely do that. This comes from Vennie, and she says, "It's a little short, but I love it so much and I think you guys will love it too. It is the legend of the Stone Dog."

Amanda: Stone Dog, my favorite dog!

Julia: Ghost dog!

Eric: Let's read the story first.

Amanda: He's my favorite dog, Eric.

Eric: Okay, okay. I'm just saying, you don't want to milkshake doc this stone dog.

Amanda: That's, okay, fine. That's fair.

Eric: I'm just saying.

Amanda: Stone Dog might be racist, I don't know.

Eric: It turns out Stone Dog's a Nazi.

Amanda: No!

Julia: Gosh dammit, Eric.

Eric: "Legends tell of a man, some say he was a Spanish soldier, others say it was a fisherman, that found a stray dog. The dog was in bad shape, and the man decided to tend and care for the dog. They formed a strong bond of friendship, and were hardly seen without one another. People who would constantly see them together in the old part of the city would recognize and say 'Hi' to them. Sometimes, the man would take his dog with him when he went fishing in the shallow waters. One day, the man had to leave by sea, either to Cuba to fight in a battle, or out fishing in the deep waters, and he had to leave his faithful friend behind."

Julia: No!

Amanda: No!

Eric: "That day, the dog, who most people liked to call 'Amigo' was acting restless."

Amanda: Amigo, no!

Eric: "Because his owner was not around, people would leave food and water for Amigo. After many days, the news that the man had died at sea spread all over town."

Amanda: No!

Julia: No!

Eric: "And the people took pity on Amigo, and tried taking him in. But he would run towards the bay. As days passed, his loyalty never waned, and at some point he jumped in the water from the bay, and swam until he reached a large reef just outside the bay where he waited for the return of his friend."

Julia: No.

Amanda: Amigo!

Julia: This is basically the really sad dog story from Futurama and I hate it.

Amanda: I don't like it.

Eric: "He spent so much time there that the dog turned to stone, and up until a couple years ago, you could still see the stone dog sitting on the reef, looking into the horizon. Unfortunately, the stone dog can't be seen anymore due to erosion and the passage of time."

Amanda: Fucking climate change, god dammit, taking my Stone Dog.

Eric: "But the legend is still very much alive."

Julia: Did you purposely pick the saddest story to end on, Eric? God dammit.

Amanda: The world is scary and sad enough.

Eric: There is plenty of evidence in episodes, in these episodes, that I only read the first sentence of these and I don't know what I'm about to read. I've said it at least two other times, so I did not know that I was gonna read the saddest story about this dog. And I regret ever insinuating that Stone Dog could milkshake himself.

Julia: He's the most precious!

Eric: He's the perfect dog.

Julia: He's so good.

Amanda: So listeners, as you send us your urban legends, please say in the first sentence, "Eric, don't read this one." Because we will-

Julia: Eric, it's so sad.

Eric: Or at least like, "Eric, this is gonna be sad. We might wanna prep everybody beforehand." I didn't know, I had to read it.

Amanda: Or buddy, you can read the email before you choose it, bud.

Eric: But it's more fun for all of us to be surprised.

Amanda: Whatever you say.

Eric: Except for this time. Except for this one in which it wasn't more fun.

Amanda: Well, the ghost of the Stone Doggo is welcome in my house anytime.

Julia: Anytime.

Amanda: He doesn't shed because he's made of stone.

Julia: He doesn't make me sneeze because he's ghost and also a pupper that's made of stone!

Amanda: Ghost pupper, love it.

Julia: Are you allergic to stone?

Amanda: No.

Julia: 'Cause the stone pupper won't make you sneeze.

Amanda: Julia.

Eric: You've got the Stone Doggo and the Hack Puppers. They're hanging out together.

Julia: No!

Amanda: My favorite.

Julia: We need like a listener stories of just ghostly puppers.

Amanda: I know, and I don't wanna push our luck because the Hack Pupper drawings were so good, but if someone wants to send us a Hack Pupper and a Stone Doggo hanging out, I'm not gonna say no. I'm gonna retweet it.

Julia: Or just a Stone Pupper.

Amanda: Just a Stone Pupper.

Julia: Stone Doggo, sorry. We can't mix up our puppers and doggos here.

Eric: Do we have another story or is that-

Julia: No, you ended it on the saddest story.

Eric: Oh, no. I'm so sorry.

Julia: Thanks, buddy. Thanks bud. You done fucked up.

Eric: If you guys need something to lift your spirits, listen to one of the other Multitude shows like Potterless, that's always a hoot.

Julia: You know what, that is actually true.

Eric: That'll hopefully lift your spirits right back up.

Amanda: Yeah, if you like the three of us yelling at each other lovingly as BFF's do, you should listen to Weigh Station. It's a podcast we have where the three of us re-watch one of our favorite shows, Lost Girl, which is on Netflix and bingeable, at least here in the U.S., and it's ridiculous and campy and lot's of stuff goes on and there are very questionable mythological creatures, and we have a heck of a good time. So, that show is Weigh Station.

Julia: Can I plug a show that isn't one of ours?

Amanda: Hell yeah.

Julia: So I actually just started listening to a new show called "TV Party". It's a consequence podcast production. It's by our friends who also do AlcoHollywood. But, it's mainly a feminist driven TV show review. So if you like our Weigh Station kind of dialogue, it's very similar to that.

Amanda: I love it. And as Eric said, Potterless is also a super good bet. We're gonna be on an upcoming episode, and I think Schneider has one more as well before all is said and done. So, it is a very good time. Mike is very funny.

Eric: I hope so. I have to compete.

Amanda: That is true.

Eric: I'm the ... I'm still gunning for that number one spot.

Amanda: I know.

Eric: Number one guest.

Amanda: I know. People like to tweet to Mike who their favorite guests are, and we are somewhat in a somewhat real race to see who actually is the favorite.

Eric: I mean there's definitely a race for Julia and Eric.

Amanda: It's getting really intense.

Eric: And then I think Amanda is solidly holding third. And I'm way at the bottom.

Amanda: Listen, I don't send you guys every tweet that mentions me as the favorite 'cause I'm not that bad.

Julia: I don't do that either!

Eric: I got the worst episodes, and Julia cheated by picking some of the best episodes.

Julia: It's not cheating if I'm asking which ones I wanted to do. Okay?

Eric: I was assigned bad episodes, and that's unfair if you get to pick an episode. That's all I'm saying.

Amanda: Well, I think the true best guest, Eric, would make the best of their situation. Huh? And elevate every chapter to be a wonderful romp.

Julia: Yeah, buddy. Yeah. Yeah.

Eric: Yeah, I think my episodes are the best for what I was given.

Amanda: True.

Julia: Sure.

Eric: But I think a lot of people skipped over my episodes knowing how boring those chapters were, so they didn't experience the fullness of my true comedy.

Amanda: Well, to finish out our recommendation corner here, Join the Party is the other show that we have on Multitude.

Eric: Who does that star, Amanda?

Julia: I don't know, some nerds.

Amanda: Some nerds. Me and three other nerds. And, we play dungeons and dragons every week and it sounds like an audio drama, it's beautiful, there's original music and sound design and really good editing. They're all under an hour. And it's the story of a band of ragtag friends saving two husbands at their wedding. That's where we open the story. And so, if you like queer stuff, feminist stuff, good, good stories ... There's also some cute pups, a lot of animals. My character has a pupper and she is the cutest dog of all time.

Julia: She's a blink dog.

Amanda: And if you like that ... Yeah, she's a blink dog. Yeah, she's a little french bulldog that you can blink into different existences and teleport ... Oh, she's great. Okay. So, that's Join the Party. And if you want to read more of these shows and be like, "Whoa, that was a lot of names, what?" You can look in the description of this podcast or go to multitude.productions, and we have links to all of 'em.

Julia: Well, thank you for joining us for another Home Towns episode. And, until next time, just remember: Stay creepy,

Amanda: Stay cool.

[Theme music]

Julia: Spirits was created by Amanda McLoughlin, Julia Schifini, and Eric Schneider, with music by Kevin McCloud and visual design by Allyson Wakeman. Keep up with all things creepy and cool by following us on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and Instagram at Spirits Podcast. We also have all our episodes, collaborations and guest appearances, plus merch on our website, spiritspodcast.com.

Amanda: Come on over to our Patreon page, patreon.com/spiritspodcast, for all kinds of behind the scenes stuff. Throw us as little as one dollar and get access to audio extras, recipe cards, directors' commentaries, and patron only live streams.

Julia: And hey, if you like the show, please share us with your friends. That is the best way to help us keep on growing.

Amanda: Thank you so much for listening. Until next time.