Episode 122: Your Urban Legends XX

This episode is full of scary stories and too many children having to camp. You have been warned. We also learn about the importance of doing your research on a haunting, wonder why ghosts are creepier when they can run, and debate the Reese’s Peanut Butter brand of products.

This week, Julia recommends The X-Mas Mistake, a cursed Hallmark Christmas movies podcast.


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- Skillshare is an online learning community where you can learn—and teach—just about anything. Visit skillshare.com/spirits2 to get two months of Skillshare Premium for free! This week Julia recommends “Real Productivity: Create Your Ideal Week”.

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Amanda:              Welcome to Spirits Podcast, a boozy dive into mythology, legends, and folklore. Every week, we pour a drink and learn about a new story from around the world. I'm Amanda.

Julia:                     And I'm Julia.

Amanda:              And this is episode 122, your urban legends XX.

Julia:                     XX. It's almost gnarly. We need 10 more, and then it's the sexy one, XXX?

Amanda:              Oh, XXX. I was like, is 21 the gnarly number? I didn't know about that.

Julia:                     21 is the gnarly number. You got me there.

Amanda:              I was very much the kid in middle school and high school, as you know, Julia, who would hear people laughing about a thing, and then write it down, you know, secretly, and then be like Julia, is this a sexual innuendo, because I didn't understand it?

Julia:                     Let me do a quick Google before Google was really a thing.

Amanda:              I know. If only I had had that, that would have been great.

Julia:                     Ah, Google, you came to us too late. We could have understood so much more about ourselves.

Amanda:              But do you know who came to us just on time?

Julia:                     Our new patrons.

Amanda:              Our new patrons, Dustin and Lindsey, joining those who are always perfectly on time for every event they attend, are supporting producer level patrons, Phillip, Julie, Eeyore, Samantha, Christopher, Alicia, Cathy, Benny, Danicka, Marissa, Sammy, Josie, Neil, Jessica, Phil Fresh, and Debora.

Julia:                     And the person who is throwing the party, who has the snacks ready in case anyone shows up early or exactly on time are our legend level patrons, Halley, Sarah P, James, Jess, Sarah, Sandra, Audra, Mercedes, Jack Marie, and Leanne.

Amanda:              Yeah, they like take the saran wrap off of the crudite platter, and ah, what's that? They turn around, they're not sweaty. They look beautiful. Oh, the guests have arrived.

Julia:                     The dream.

Amanda:              Truly the dream. Julia, as always for our urban legend episodes, we drink local beer, and this time, I was happy to provide some Brooklyn Pride IPA. You know that spring is coming, which means summer's almost here, which means it's pre pride season, and I very much enjoy that rainbow label.

Julia:                     Isn't it always pre pride season?

Amanda:              That's true.

Julia:                     Do you know what it also is always, Amanda?

Amanda:              What?

Julia:                     It's always almost Christmas time, and this week, I want to make a recommendation. A couple of my friends have put out a podcast called The Christmas Mistake, which they have dubbed a cursed podcast, and they watch Hallmark movies to realize that basically Hallmark is trying to spread the Eldrich horror word of Christmas. Christmas is an Eldrich deity.

Amanda:              That sounds like quite a thesis statement.

Julia:                     It is very good, highly recommend it. It is brand new. There's only one episode out. But they have a lot of interesting stuff planned, and you can see them slowly dissolve into madness, as they watch a Hallmark Christmas movie every single week.

Amanda:              Well, before we get into the rest of the episode, we would love to think our sponsors for the week. Honeybook is a purpose built business management platform for creative small businesses, like mine. So you can get 50% off your first year on honebook.com with the code spirits. And Skillshare, the online learning community, where you can learn or teach just about anything, skillshare.com/spirits2 will get you two months of Skillshare Premium for free.

Julia:                     Yeah, and Amanda, I think we have some exciting stuff to tell our listeners about.

Amanda:              Oh, we sure do. Speaking of Eldrich curses, we are heading to Akron to visit the spaghetti warehouse that in fiction, a year and a half ago, two years ago?

Julia:                     Two years ago.

Amanda:              Kidnapped Schneider.

Julia:                     Yeah. We're finally doing it. We're finally going to spaghetti warehouse. I'm so excited/nervous/we're going to go to Ohio. Going to Ohio is a feeling.

Amanda:              I love going to Ohio. It'll be my third time there, and I think third time means I get to unlock all the Ohio secrets that had been taken from me before. So we are super, super stoked. And anyone who's in the Cleveland or Akron, Ohio areas, we're going to have a little meetup on Saturday April, 27, 2019 in the early afternoon. The exact time will be TBD. But we are stoked to be visiting the spaghetti warehouse. We are stoked to be seeing all of your beautiful faces. So if you are able to come, tweet us and let us know, and look out for either our Twitter or our newsletter as the time gets closer for exact location details. So that also is what I wanted to pen up to everybody. The Multitude Productions newsletter is going to give you some more exciting announcements, maybe regarding other cities maybe very soon.

Julia:                     We plug the newsletter quite a bit, because one, it's wonderful, and Amanda does a great job with it, but two, there is some exciting stuff coming up. Please sign up for the newsletter. We want to tell you all about it.

Amanda:              Including the link to where you can listen to our Seattle live show audio, which we'll be releasing very soon. We'll be sharing these on social, but the best and first place to get those links is the Multitude newsletter. So go to multitude.productions, scroll to the bottom, and sign up there for our newsletter.

Julia:                     Heck yeah. Do it. Do it.

Amanda:              Without further ado, enjoy Spirits podcast episode 122, your urban legends 20.

Eric:                       Guys, I have great news.

Amanda:              Tell me.

Julia:                     What is it?

Eric:                       As you may recall, six months ago was the opposite of whatever this daylight savings was.

Julia:                     Yes.

Eric:                       And I was very excited because I did math poorly, and I was like the dog will now get up later, and I was wrong, and he got up earlier for the next six months.

Amanda:              Oh no.

Eric:                       But now, as of this past weekend that we're recording this, it is the other daylight savings time, and my math is good now.

Amanda:              We sprung forward.

Julia:                     Huzzah.

Eric:                       So now, he is like not whining at all. The witching hour is pretty much gone. He's getting fed even later than usual because he has no concept of time.

Amanda:              Wild how dogs work.

Eric:                       It's very good. It's so amazing. I'm so happy. I'm refreshed, and I'm ready to do a hometowns episode

Julia:                     Heck yeah. Let's do it. Do you have a story that you want to start us off with?

Eric:                       I do, and it's actually about a dog.

Amanda:              Aw. I hope a safe for Eric dog.

Eric:                       Amanda, let me tell you something about this story. This story is safe for me, but it is explicitly says oh God, don't let Amanda read this.

Amanda:              Oh no, now I'm ready.

Julia:                     Picks up iced coffee, I'm ready.

Eric:                       I think it's a good one to start on, not end on. That's always key with a dog story regardless.

Amanda:              You learn so much.

Eric:                       But I can guarantee it's not as bad as stone dog story.

Julia:                     That's good. I'm glad.

Eric:                       So this story comes to us from Sarah, and they write, "so a lot of the smaller towns in Maine are very old and at least partially abandoned. This means that there's a lot of old, cheap apartments to rent. These apartments are located not in apartment buildings but in houses, like old houses. Usually apartments are divided by floor, although some are entire buildings and others are just rooms." So this is essentially what my apartment, living situation is. We live on the upstairs of a duplex.

                                "My friend Brianna told me about a story about one particular apartment the other day. Please note, both of us are scientists who went to graduate school together. As a rule, neither of us believe in ghosts." I like as a rule. Not like as a belief system or just something we generally agree on. As a rule. As a hard and fast rule.

Julia:                     Fundamental fact of life.

Amanda:              I respect it, though. You have sort of a higher bar of evidence or skepticism that you have to overcome.

Eric:                       Yeah. I like it. "But this experience she had a few years ago changed both of our minds, although she only told me about it a few weeks ago. During our time in graduate school, Brianna, rented a few different apartments, each as equally unspooky as the last. But one apartment left her shaken to her core. It wasn't a creepy place at all. In fact, it had lots of natural lighting and seemed very clean and safe for an old apartment. She even loved this apartment, but that all changed when she started having the nightmares."

Julia:                     Yes, tell me about the nightmares.

Eric:                       "They were all very similar to each other. She was in her bedroom, but there were candles everywhere on the opposite side--" Amanda, I want you to chime in on what part you think they might be worried. Are they like, do they think you're just fire hazard awareness. "On the opposite side of the room facing her bed, there was a man in what could only be described as 1800s period clothing sitting behind the window."

Amanda:              No.

Eric:                       Sitting beneath the window.

Julia:                     Okay, so this ghost is obviously trying to seduce her. The candles are romantic.

Eric:                       That's one theory. That is a theory. Amanda, do you have a theory about what's happening? Do you think it's a rogue Bath & Body Works salesman?

Julia:                     From the 1800s.

Amanda:              I think maybe this ghost maybe really wants to see the room well. Maybe they want to read in any corner of the room, instead of carrying a candle around with them. Maybe the floor is really beautiful. I don't know.

Eric:                       Well, here's what this ghost would do. "He would often try to talk to her, but she doesn't remember much more than that. But one cream in particular stuck with her over the years. In this dream, the man tried to get her dog, Shadow, to come with him."

Amanda:              Oh, leave the dog.

Eric:                       "Brianna in response, called back to Shadow, beckoning him to stay by her side. The man grew angrier and angrier and kept calling to the dog, and then she woke up. She also had a dream in that apartment that involved her trying to scream, but only having silent air escape her mouth."

Amanda:              That's always bad.

Eric:                       That's the only detail that she remembers from this dream, unfortunately. "While it could be easily chalked up to grad school distress, she lived many places in her time during her time in grad school, and this was the only place where she had these nightmares, and now I'm 100% convinced that department is haunted." Trying to steal a pupper in a dream? Very creepy and very uncool.

Julia:                     Unacceptable.

Amanda:              Oh yeah, that's bad. Like come after my soul, but do not come after my perfect nephew, Koda.

Julia:                     Koda is very cute.

Amanda:              My sister has a pitbull mix, and he's about a year old. He is so cute. I love him.

Julia:                     I have one that is also somewhat dog related.

Amanda:              Oh.

Julia:                     So this is an email from Max. And the subject line is "Guardian Wolfy and the Girl Scouts that Would Survive the Zombie Apocalypse." No response to that at all? Cool.

Eric:                       It's just a lot. It's just a lot of stuff.

Amanda:              I need to know more.

Julia:                     So Max writes, "I'm a pretty new listener getting caught up on your back log, but your many mentions of heck puppers in your urban legends episode brought up a memory when I was at sleep away Girl Scout camp back when I thought I had a gender."

Amanda:              Man. What a mood.

Julia:                     "When I was about 12, I went to a sleep away camp that was probably 30 kids in the middle of nowhere. I'm talking like six hours away from most civilization, not far from the Canadian border, middle of nowhere. It was the kind of camp where six kids were in a cabin, and it was up on a hill kind of thing. Well, the very first night, me and two of the girls in my cabin were walking to go to the bathroom, and in the middle of the camp, we shined our flashlights on what looked like a huge timber wolf, almost as tall or taller than us, its head down towards the ground, but eyes bright golden yellow. Given the fact that this was way out in the sticks in north Idaho, this would not have been an unreasonable assumption. The three of us collectively lost our shit and dove into the nearest cabin, as a wolf of any type or species is not something to fucks with."

Amanda:              Good instinct, y'all.

Julia:                     "We waited probably 20 minutes for this wolf to find something more interesting and leave, but we warned the occupants of the cabin before we left. I guess seeing strength in numbers, they decided to come with us to tell the counselor. Our counselors obviously didn't believe us and told us to go back to our cabins. But this kid read too much damn Harry Potter and other such kids are heroes and adults don't pay attention to danger stories. So our group took it upon ourselves to warn the other cabins about the possibility of danger and wait til the morning to leave their cabins.

                                In our travels, the original three of us doing the classic Harry Potter three people go back to back to back pose. Whenever so much as a cricket chirped too loudly, we found that checking up on the cabins could have saved a life. You see, we found that one of the girls was having issues with sleep walking that night, and had even gotten to the door at one point in the night. This cabin was closest to the hill, and had she gone further, she would have fallen down a steep hill. This cabin ended up being the one that almost the entire camp collectively barricaded ourselves in, taking shifts for sleeping to keep an eye out for any further wolfy activity with the added security that this camper couldn't sleep walk off a mountain.

                                When the morning came, the counselors were understandably pissed as hell, even when it came to the whole someone was literally sleepwalking and was going to go down the mountain, but go off, I guess, bit. And when we tried to find any evidence to support a wolf in our camp ground, there was nothing, not hide, nor hair, nor paw print.

                                Looking back at the incident, I kind of think in a weird, roundabout way, this was a spirit's way of getting us to look out for our fellow campers. And I honestly worry that if we hadn't, that camper might have seriously gotten hurt, or that we were 12 and wanted a Goosebumps style adventure. Either way, I fully believe this group would survive the apocalypse, and the adults are low key useless as hell. Much love, Max."

Amanda:              What a good story.

Julia:                     Yeah.

Amanda:              I'm very glad ... it reminds me of our only other Girl Scout related urban legend, where at that location, that was like the Girl Scout founder, I think, that the teacher was able to help out a student, I think with a seizure. So it sounds like Girl Scouts are extremely helpful even though they don't know that they are.

Julia:                     Looking out for their own.

Amanda:              Yeah.

Julia:                     I like that.

Eric:                       Where are the adults in this situation?

Amanda:              Sleeping.

Eric:                       Is there not an adult assigned to every cabin?

Amanda:              I don't know.

Eric:                       Seems wild.

Amanda:              Well, I'm very happy to report that I have the perfect segue here. It's something that's addressed, "Amanda or Julia, please read this to Eric," segueing off of Eric's first email. And secondly, it's about camping.

Julia:                     Camping. Tell me more about camping. We're really doing well with our segues this episode. These are not planned at all.

Amanda:              Doing our best here, professional podcasters. So this is from Claire who addresses the email, "my experience with a tailypo story and the time I thought the tailypo would get me."

Eric:                       Yes. Very good.

Julia:                     Tell us about that tailypo.

Amanda:              Eric's bopping his head like he's listening to a sick beat.

Eric:                       I am.

Julia:                     Bop, bop, bop.

Eric:                       I have Spotify real quiet while I record this just so I can listen to some sick beats along with this.

Amanda:              Well, my Siri just activated out of nowhere where I was saying nothing and wearing headphones. So maybe the spirit is among us.

Julia:                     Cool, Siri, cool.

Eric:                       Maybe it was like sick beats, Siri, maybe.

Amanda:              That could be. That could be. All right. "Hey, spirits. It's me, your girl. I wanted to write in ..." Oh, I think it really is saying spirits. That's why.

Eric:                       Oh, spirit. That makes more sense.

Amanda:              "It's me, your girl. I've wanted to write in for ages, ever since I heard that your urban legends episode where Eric talked about the tailypo. I have my own experience with the tailypo story, albeit a slightly different version. And it would make my strange little heart very happy if someone could read this to Eric." Let's do it.

                                "My elementary school only went to grade six, and every year, there was a much anticipated trip and rite of passage for the sixth grade students that involved spending a week at a massive camp for swimming, games, crafts, and all the nature." Any reactions to this concept of a week of camping with your sixth grade class when you're about to graduate?

Eric:                       I don't like that it's called a rite of passage.

Julia:                     If you survive.

Eric:                       It makes it feel like there's something much more insidious than an elementary school.

Julia:                     Didn't we for our sixth grade trip go on a booze cruise without the booze?

Amanda:              Yes. We went on a river cruise around Manhattan, which was very beautiful, and I'd love to do again. I mostly hung out with my parents, which tells you what you need to know about how I was as a kid. But yeah. It was definitely looking back one of those things where I'm like, oh, that's why adults do that, because there's alcohol involved.

Julia:                     Yes, makes sense.

Eric:                       There was nothing for us at the end of sixth grade. I think we all got to walk down a hallway and our parents got to clap and cheer us on. There was no trip or anything like that involved.

Julia:                     I like the ominous you are walking to your destiny, children.

Amanda:              Marching onward. I remember after our sixth grade graduation, I think I read a speech or something, and my sixth grade teacher put a hand on my shoulder and was like, Amanda, I know that you think you're weird, and you might not fit in right away, but you're going to be okay. And I was like thank you. And it truly was something that I needed to hear. It was very pure.

Julia:                     Aw.

Amanda:              All right, back to Claire. "Needless to say, this trip was something that everyone looked forward to, and every year during the last month of school, all the younger kids would watch with envy as the sixth grade students got on a cavalcade of buses and drove off for adventure. Finally, it was my year, and we headed off on the two hour drive to the camp, got our cabins assigned, ate dinner, and then were led to the middle of a clearing in the woods for some scary stories around a camp fire."

Eric:                       Okay, so here's what I don't like about this. They were led to a clearing through the woods.

Amanda:              Yeah.

Eric:                       Which means in order to get back to the cabin, you have to go back through the spooky woods. Not okay. Just have a camp fire near the cabins. You don't need to walk through the woods to find a creepy perfect circle clearing.

Julia:                     See, my instinct is when someone's like, and we were led to a clearing, my brain instantly ends it with, and then we were ritualistically sacrificed.

Amanda:              Yeah, that's definitely where mine goes as well.

Julia:                     Okay, good.

Amanda:              "But this is what I was looking forward to the most when I was a weird ass little kid and loved everything creepy and cool. I should note now that I'm just a big weird ass kid that wants to be Baba Yaga when I grow up."

Julia:                     Fair. Good life goals.

Amanda:              "Lots of stories were told that were supposed to be scary but fell flat, until one camp leader, who went by the name, Acorn, took the center seat, and the entire mood changed."

Julia:                     I don't want to judge Acorn on their name, but they are named Acorn.

Eric:                       I mean, I'm judging them as the coolest person.

Julia:                     Okay.

Amanda:              "Well, he told us the story of tailypo, and I'll do my best to reproduce the version he told." You guys settled in? You have your cocoa.

Eric:                       I am so ready.

Amanda:              Eric has a camp mug in his hand. "Times were hard and food was scarce. Even the hermit who lived several hours from the nearest town struggled to find food after most of the deer in the area were already hunted by the townsfolk. One day, he was out with his three dogs. He'd managed to snare a rabbit earlier and was searching for more food when he spotted movement in a nearby bush. Seizing his opportunity, he took aim with his gun and fired before running over with his hatchet and taking a swing at whatever was still moving in the bush.

                                A bone chilling howl pierced the air, and a massive shape that resembled a large cat took off into the dense wood. The hermit's heart sank, thinking he'd lost out on a meal when he saw blood and a long tail on the ground." Julia is shaking her head. Not interested.

Julia:                     There's not a lot of meat on a tail. Don't take it.

Amanda:              Well, Julia, you'll be upset to know that, "returning to his small cabin, he cooked up the rabbit for his dogs and the tail for him."

Julia:                     What? Rabbit is such better meat than any sort of tail.

Amanda:              But we've had ox tail before. That's delicious.

Julia:                     Yeah, but ox tail is different. I don't know.

Amanda:              Well, it's the tail that he had. "And that night, he fell asleep for the first time in a long time with a full stomach and fell into a deep sleep. During the night, he was awoken by a pained howling in the woods and the distance sound of scratching. As he listened, he heard a voice, dry and desperate, crying." Anyone want to guess?

Julia:                     My tailypo, my tailypo. Give me back my tailypo.

Amanda:              "Where is my tailypo? The hermit, unaware of what awful man or animal could make such a terrible sound opened the door to his cabin, sending his dogs out into the darkness to take care of the menace. Shortly after, he heard a struggle, dogs growling and deep hissing, and eventually, he saw two of his dogs return with scratches over their entire bodies. When dawn arrived, he went searching for the missing dog and came across a tree, all but stripped of bark on one side by massive claws, blood on the leaves and dirt, but no sign of his missing dog.

                                That evening, as he went to sleep, he and the remaining two dogs were awakened by more scratching, but this time, outside the window of the cottage. And as he neared the window to look out, he heard the voice again, wailing and raspy, where is my tailypo? Afraid that whatever this was would get inside, he opened the door to this cottage, releasing the dogs who took off right to the bushes below the window. Again, the sound of struggle, and this time, only one dog returned, badly injured.

                                At sunrise, he inspected the window, and found the logs below ruined by deep gouges, blood sprayed on the grass, wood, and ground, and again, no sign of his dog. When night fell, he and his remaining dog waited in silence, eventually falling asleep, before he was awoken again to the dog growling, the sound of scratching coming from the other side of his front door, and the voice loudly wailing, where is my tailypo?

                                Bracing himself behind the door and seeing no other option, the hermit opened it to let the last dog out, hoping desperately that this time the dog would chase the creature off for good. The dog got halfway through the crack before it yelped and then silence. With no sign of the dog returning, the hermit locked the door and braced his only chair against it. He packed everything he owned in a rush. At first light, he would run to the closest settlement and find shelter there. He sat on his bed, propped up by his pack with his gun next to him and his hatchet in his arms, waiting for dawn.

                                At some point, he must've fallen asleep and jumped awake at the sound of scratching. His eyes wildly searched the room before seeing that there was a hole scratched through the bottom of the door. He sat up right with a start, and when he heard the voice, where is my tailypo, and the sound of scratching from above his head. His heart pounding in his chest, the hermit looked upward and found himself face to face with the creature.

                                It had a twisted, almost human face, a large, sickly cat like body, covered in mud, covered in matted and diseased hair, and instead of feet, it had human like hands with long sharp claws." Julia's mouth was really tiny with rage and fear.

Julia:                     I also just laughed at the human feet thing.

Amanda:              Real bad, real bad hand cat. "The creature repeated in a louder, strained voice, showing its needle like teeth, where is my tailypo? His eyes wide, the hermit screamed, I haven't got your tailypo. I know where my tailypo is, said the creature, extending its hands, and wrapping them around his throat. Pulling him close, the creature whispered in his ear, you ate it. Months later, hunters stopped at the hermit's cottage to check on him and found it empty, his gun and hatchet on the bed and everything covered in dried blood. They never saw or heard from him again."

                                So Claire says, "This was the only story of the whole trip that was scary. And I wanted to add a quick moment I had after hearing it. After everyone went to bed that night, I woke up and needed to use the bathroom. Unfortunately, the cabins did not have plumbing, and there was a couple minute walk down the path to where the washrooms were. For obvious reasons, they didn't want the kids wandering on the paths alone at night, so I went to wake up my buddy to come with me, but she wouldn't, so made the brilliant decision to go alone. As I was walking back from the washrooms, I heard scratching coming from behind one of the cabins. Naturally, my overactive imagination went to the tailypo, and being the curious, stupid kid that I was, I wandered off the path toward the cabin, where I caught a quick glimpse of some kind of animal moving in the bushes. The only thing that I knew was that I saw a tail before I heard screaming and yelling from the cabin. I noped out of there hard and ran back to my cabin, hurled myself into my bed and did not sleep a wink the entire night.

                                FYI, I did try to tell the camp leader, who was in our cabin, about my near death encounter with a possible tailypo, but she thought I was having a nightmare and ignored it. The next morning at breakfast, we noticed one of the cabin groups was at its table complaining loudly about another camper. It turns out that that girl had broken the very strict no food in the cabins rule and threw the evidence of her midnight snacking out the window, which attracted a family of raccoons, who got into the cabin, through the window and terrified all the girls there."

Julia:                     That's really funny.

Eric:                       That's a classic whoops.

Amanda:              Classic caper. "While the girl who broke the rules ended up sleeping the rest of the trip in the teachers' cabin, and I kept my story to myself after that, not wanting the tailypo incident to haunt me for the rest of my school life, like you do."

Julia:                     Very, very good. I forgot how creepy the tailypo story is and also how like specifically structured it is. Like it is so much the rule of three.

Amanda:              Oh yeah, and reading it, too, I was like this is great. Like I don't feel like I have a mind to keep those stories in it and make it dramatic. But when the structure repeats, and there's the same line, and you can really get into it, I don't know, it's really fun.

Julia:                     Yeah.

Amanda:              But I think Claire made the right choice by not investigating that disturbance and by trying to tell a teacher. But I don't know, I guess raccoons and tailypos look pretty similar in the dark.

Eric:                       We had someone at Boy Scout camp definitely have some food in his tent, and a raccoon went up in there and got it all.

Amanda:              Oh really? I only hear that you have to do that because bears. I guess a small raccoon would be almost scarier.

Eric:                       You have to do that for sure if there's bears in the area. A raccoon will probably not fight you.

Amanda:              Probably not.

Eric:                       So less concern. But raccoons, if they're hungry, they're going to find food.

Amanda:              Our elementary school mascot was a raccoon.

Julia:                     That is true, Rocky the Raccoon.

Eric:                       That is a terrible, a terrible ...

Amanda:              Isn't that a terrible mascot?

Eric:                       A terrible mascot.

Julia:                     I'm trying to think what was our middle school one?

Amanda:              A horse.

Julia:                     No, that was high school.

Amanda:              Oh, I don't know actually. I thought it was a horse.

Julia:                     Yellow and black were our colors.

Amanda:              I don't think it was a badger. That would have been cool.

Julia:                     Yeah.

Eric:                       I can't remember what our middle school was.

Julia:                     I'm going to look it up.

Eric:                       Our high school was one of those racist ones.

Julia:                     Oh no.

Eric:                       That we don't talk about.

Julia:                     It was the Rams. The Mams Rams.

Amanda:              The Mams Rams. How could we have forgotten?

Julia:                     Such a mistake.

Amanda:              I'm going to dig through my drawer to find my old Calhoun Colts t-shirt, but in the meantime, why don't we go get a refill?

Julia:                     Sounds good.

Amanda:              Julia, it's March. You know what that means?

Julia:                     No, tell me.

Amanda:              Taxes are due.

Julia:                     Oh god.

Amanda:              Or almost due. They're due in April, but for businesses, some of them were due in January. Other ones are due in March. And it's just complex. Running a business has so many things that it requires from you that aren't the thing that you're doing for your business, aka, the thing that makes you money. And all the time that you spend on all these administrative tasks can take away from the stuff that you really have to do, aka, growing your business and really making money. Which is why I really appreciate Honeybook is one of our sponsors for this week.

                                They are a business management platform that helps you cut down on the paperwork, the endless emails, and dealing with payment collection. Honeybook makes it really easy to streamline the whole client process, so getting clients, communicating with them, and then of course, invoicing and getting your payment. So for a limited time, if you have a small business, a small creative business or whatever, you can get 50% off your first year of honeybook.com with promo code spirits. That includes unlimited access to all of their features at one low monthly price, which is awesome, because as your business grows, you have more tools available to you that you don't even have to pay more money for.

Julia:                     Absolutely. So you can go to honeybook.com today and use the promo code spirits to get started. Again, that is honeybook.com, promo code spirits.

Amanda:              Thanks, Honeybook.

Julia:                     Amanda, you've heard us talk about Skillshare before. We talk about Skillshare all the time because we love Skillshare, and Skillshare is an online learning community for creators. They now have over 25,000 classes, and there's a really heavy emphasis on learning to fuel your curiosity, your creativity, and your career. And honestly, what more could you want? So actually, this week, I finished your class, which is wonderful, by the way.

Amanda:              Thanks.

Julia:                     And this week, I took a class that was actually made by the founder of Skillshare, and the class is called "Real Productivity: Create Your Ideal Week." And as someone who works from home and freelances, organization and keeping myself focused and productive during the week can be a bit of a challenge. But Michael has some really serious advice on scheduling and strategies that I'm actually starting to implement into my life to kind of get that sweet, sweet work-life balance.

Amanda:              That's amazing.

Julia:                     What we all strive for.

Amanda:              And where can the listeners get a two month free trial of Skillshare Premium?

Julia:                     Well, they can go to skillshare.com/spirits2, the number 2, for two free months of Skillshare Premium.

Amanda:              Beautiful. And there, you can check out my course, you can check out this productivity course, or the more than 25,000 classes that Skillshare has to offer, design, business. Anything you want, you can find at Skillshare. That's skillshare.com/spirits2 for two free months of Skillshare Premium.

Julia:                     Skillshare.com/spirits2, the number 2.

Amanda:              Thanks, Skillshare. Now, let's get back to the show.

Eric:                       All righty. Are we ready for another story?

Amanda:              Yes, tell me. What is it?

Eric:                       Well, I've got one from Emily, and they write, "My Shadow Man and Other Ghost Encounters."

Julia:                     Yeah.

Amanda:              You know, that still fucks me up, slender man, shadow man, don't want anything to do with either of those.

Julia:                     Here we go.

Eric:                       Well, you're about to have to deal with it a bunch.

Amanda:              That is the deal I made with the devil is that I get to be a full time podcaster, but my job has to involve hearing extremely creepy stories that haunt me at night. Literally, last night, I had a nightmare that Voldemort was coming back, and I had to defeat him with a dunk contest featuring Kawhi Leonard, Joel Embiid and Michael Jordan, which if you listen to Horace, you'll know about all of those people. And at the end of it, it looked like we had defeated them. It was like a wedding and Voldemort was at the reception. Anyway, at the end, everyone was celebrating, and I was like guys, I don't think we defeated him, and I woke up.

Julia:                     Oh no. That's anxiety talking.

Eric:                       Speaking of funny making deals with the devil scary stuff, on Critical Role, one of the cast members, Travis, is like constantly, constantly spooked out by really, really scary stuff. And they have a talk show on Tuesday about the previous week's episode, and all the questions are submitted on Reddit for it, and someone submitted a question on this past episode, they referenced how scared Travis gets about everything. And the top rated question is, "Travis, every so often, I see a little creepy girl with black hair standing behind you."

Julia:                     Oh no.

Eric:                       Like during the live feed of the show.

Julia:                     Weird.

Eric:                       "Is this a prank by the production staff?" And then sometimes else was like, yeah, sometimes I'll watch the replay, and she won't be there, and then I'll watch it again, and she will be there.

Amanda:              They're so mean to him.

Eric:                       So that question will hopefully get asked tonight, as of this recording, and I'm very excited to see him lose his mind. So yeah, sometimes you just gotta, every so often, making a deal with the devil to get scared a lot is not great. But their Kickstarter just hit $7 billion.

Amanda:              I know.

Julia:                     Congrats to them.

Eric:                       It's a good deal to make.

Amanda:              I know, breaking those barriers for podcasters and D&D people. So appreciate it.

Eric:                       So Emily writes, back to her shadow man, spooky story. "My first encounter with him, I was five."

Julia:                     Nope. Already bad.

Eric:                       Such a great way to start because it's so matter of fact. "My first encounter with him, I was five. It was early one morning, too early for anyone else to be up. I remember waking up abruptly, my eyes instantly drawn to what had awoken me. In my doorway, stood a man, his head almost hitting the door frame. He was standing there, just watching me. Slowly, as if not to startle him, I sat up. Hello, I asked. His head tilted to the side before I woke up and moved a little more.

                                This wasn't a man. For one, he was all black from head to toe. He seemed to suck the light out of the room, as if he was a black hole. Second, he had no face. He had no clothes on for that matter. He was just black, empty. Once I realized this, I screamed. He took off running towards the garage, the room right next to mine. My dad came in and asked what was wrong, as I cried in his arms. There was a man there, there was man there.

                                This was the first time I encountered the paranormal." So bad.

Julia:                     Already bad.

Eric:                       Bad first time. What spooks me out the most is that it ran, because I don't think I talked about it on spirits, I can't remember. Through I recently had like a weird like three nights in a row, like I looked and saw a have to hanging on a hanger and a robe and legitimately thought it was a person three times for a solid five to 10 seconds. So I was like we gotta store that hat somewhere else.

Julia:                     Just somewhere else.

Eric:                       It's happened now three nights in a row, so I can't handle it. It's spooking me out too much. So if that ran, that's too much. Because if it's just standing there, you can be like a trick of the eyes, but physical movement, no good.

Julia:                     Right, like floating, creepy, but not as creepy as running. Disappearing, creepy, but not as creepy as running.

Amanda:              For sure.

Julia:                     Running kind of implies that it has a physical form.

Eric:                       Exactly.

Julia:                     And that's no ... no thank you.

Eric:                       They continue. "Later on in my life when I was around 10, this shadow man showed up again. I couldn't see him, but I could feel him wherever I went. He was always behind me or in the corner of my eye. When I was asleep, he stood at the end of my bed, watching. He did not want to be seen again, but I always knew he was there."

Amanda:              Oh no.

Eric:                       "I could feel his emotions, feel his eyes on me, although he didn't have any." No.

Amanda:              Oh boy. Oh, Emily, this writing is too good. Scale it back.

Julia:                     Oh boy.

Eric:                       I was so happy no one else had taken this one because this is good, good stuff. "There were times I thought I had schizophrenia, but after a little research, I realized that was not the case. I told my parents, and they encouraged me to go seen someone about it, but I didn't want to be labeled crazy."

Julia:                     Hey, I'm glad your parents were supportive of you seeking help if it is a mental health issue.

Eric:                       "I didn't want to talk about him with anyone because he was always there. I didn't want to upset his feelings because I didn't feel as if he was hurting me."

Julia:                     Oh no.

Eric:                       "He was just being a creep. I did have a few moments when he wasn't around. They mainly were when I was in the bathroom, so he at least had some manners.

Julia:                     Very polite.

Amanda:              Oh boy, oh no.

Eric:                       "I've always had a few friends who were really deep into the supernatural lore and have told me that he's a demon. I don't know if this is true since the only thing he's really made a living hell is when I go to sleep. Other than that, I've never had anything super bad happen to me. He followed me everywhere until I started college. This was also the time when we got a dog. So I'm chalking it up to the fact that he's gone because of her. With her around, I've been able to sleep soundly for the first time in forever. Also, I'm happy to note that I don't feel any presences in my dorm room at school, which is a big plus.

                                He wasn't the only one I saw either. He was just a constant presence. I've also seen a little girl in my house about six or seven years old with golden hair and pigtails."

Julia:                     Oh, nope. Nope, nope, nope.

Amanda:              Oh no. Pigtails are so scary.

Eric:                       "I saw her once while I was sitting on the couch, looking out into the family room where she skipped in."

Julia:                     Why do all your ghosts ...

Amanda:              Skipping is scarier than running.

Julia:                     Is it ... I don't know.

Eric:                       It is. It's definitely scary, because it implies a lack of urgency, so it's just like hanging around.

Julia:                     I'm just picturing AJ Lee skipping into the room, but as a ghost.

Amanda:              I'm picturing little school girl maypole, creepy skipping situation.

Eric:                       "She scared me to death, and before I could ask where she came from, she vanished into thin air. The other ghost I've only felt. There was once a boy who stood in my doorway, a little younger than the girl when I was trying to fall asleep. I didn't see him with my eyes, but I saw him with my mind. He had short cropped hair, and was wearing brown overalls. He did not like me from what I could tell. It took me a little longer to get to sleep that night with him standing there. The last ghost I've encountered was the ghost in my grandparents' house. She lives upstairs where we all sleep. She does not like us at all. I have never felt comfortable sleeping in my grandparents' house. My grandparents used to complain about it when I was little, because I have always been adamant that I sleep with one of them. Hell, I still insist to sleep with one of them and am currently 20."

Amanda:              I would, too. That's so scary.

Julia:                     Yeah, no, that's not good.

Amanda:              Like, even a surprise and random haunting is scary, but one that you know you're walking into that situation, oh.

Eric:                       No good, no good. "Anyway, she's a lot older than the children that I've seen, around 70 or so. She's in a blue gown with a really big white hat on. I once was walking up the stairs and heard her whisper, get out. I ran back downstairs and it took a while for my parents to convince me to go back up again. She's touched my legs before as I've slept, so when I got to stay at my grandparents' house, I try to take the strongest sleeping pills I can find, so I don't feel her hands on me."

Amanda:              Oh no.

Eric:                       "I've had other creepy things happen to me as well, but these are all the ghost based ones. Hope you've enjoyed my haunted life."

Julia:                     Oh my god. What's the listener's name?

Eric:                       This is from Emily.

Julia:                     Emily, are you okay?

Amanda:              Emily, dog, oh no.

Julia:                     Oh bud, not great.

Eric:                       That's a lot of spooky stuff. I think the one stopped following her when she went to college because he couldn't afford student loans.

Julia:                     I get it.

Eric:                       I think he's probably a fiscally responsible ghost by not having a job, something like that, so he couldn't make the cut.

Amanda:              Unless becoming a ghost is the ultimate student loan hack. No, that's not true because in some cases, your descendants would be eligible for repaying your loans.

Julia:                     Oh Jesus. Now I just got sad.

Eric:                       Who wants to follow that one up?

Amanda:              I have a grandparent ghost email that is less severe. So maybe we'll have a little palette cleanser.

Julia:                     Okay, great.

Amanda:              So this one comes from Natasha, and it's titled "Haunting in Cork." Natasha writes, "So my cousin lives in Cork, which even for Irish standards, is pretty haunted. Cork was and is where the stronghold was for the IRA. So a lot of stuff went down there during the British occupation of Ireland. Anyway, my cousin bought a house in a normal street with his then girlfriend." By the way, every time I hear the phrase then girlfriend, I'm like is it ex or is it wife because it's like one of the extremes.

Julia:                     Could be one of them.

Amanda:              "It was a pretty house, nothing fancy, but on the corner of the end of a row of terraced houses. There was then an alleyway, and then the next row started behind it. As soon as they moved in, strange things started to happen. Lights would go on or off. They would hear footsteps like marching upstairs. Pictures would move, and an unbelievable stench started to appear in the kitchen in the drain."

Julia:                     So always a demonic presence if it smells bad. Just saying. That's one of the ghost hunter rules.

Amanda:              For me, it was really the marching that sealed the deal, like regimented footsteps, very scary.  Don't want it. "Well, they brought in a plumber and could find nothing. As time went on, the poltergeist type things started to increase, but so did other strange things, which to be honest, I can't remember except for one, which is, one evening, my cousin and his girlfriend had friends over. These friends had a new car, which was parked a few doors down.

                                They were all just standing in the house, admiring the car through the window, when out of nowhere, a truck plowed into the car and totaled it. When they all ran outside and spoke to the driver, he just didn't understand what had happened. He said he felt something had taken control of the wheel. My cousin is on the whole not scared easily. But with everything that had happened up until now, he decided to do a bit of investigation. He contacted ..."

Julia:                     My favorite part in any haunted house movie. Continue.

Amanda:              Oh yeah. I appreciate it because I want to get to the bottom of this. "So he contacted the real estate agent who told him that no one had really stayed long in the house, and that it changed owners quite a bit over the years."

Julia:                     Again, this is one of those where they need to release those in some sort of form ...

Amanda:              Oh yeah, we need some disclosure.

Julia:                     Be like oh yeah, it was haunted. Cool.

Amanda:              Like one more category of your house inspection is like hauntings.

Julia:                     I would make so much money doing that. Jake can add that on to his resume of building inspector. Also, I do paranormal investigations.

Amanda:              It's an add on.

Julia:                     I'm going to talk to him about that today. I'm writing that down.

Eric:                       Is that thing that's licensed by the state? I don't think you can start side hustling.

Julia:                     I'm writing it down.

Amanda:              Maybe a conflict of interest.

Eric:                       Paranormal things along with actual real estate documentation.

Amanda:              Yeah. He's a certified inspector, but moonlights as a ghost inspector certified by the devil.

Eric:                       Wow.

Julia:                     Why are you saying my husband is certified by the devil, Amanda?

Amanda:              No, he's self certified in that he battled with the devil and came through it. Which I see as an implicit endorsement.

Julia:                     Cool, cool, cool.

Amanda:              Like the film endorsement is in brackets, like I guess I lost, dash the devil.

Julia:                     That's so dumb. I love it.

Amanda:              Business. All right. "My cousin, though, found out who one of the previous owners had been, so he got in touch with him. And the guy he spoke to said he had lived there for a year or so, and like my cousin, things moved, there were the lights, and the smell all happened to them. But in addition, the family dog had mysteriously died one night, and that caused them to move."

Julia:                     That's a good choice. I feel like that would be a good catalyst for nope this ... I'm done.

Amanda:              Yeah, like something is happening here, and it is not time. "So this story spooked my cousin, and he went on investigating. He found another previous owner, who said that his children barely escaped death one day as they were playing in the front garden. The man, to this day, doesn't know why, but he all of a sudden felt the urge to grab his kids and bring them inside the house. As he was just inside the door, again, a truck plowed through the fence and into his garden where his kids had been moments earlier."

Julia:                     I think they need to contact the town and add some streetlights ...

Amanda:              Some infrastructural ... yeah.

Julia:                     Yeah, some stop signs perhaps. I don't know.

Amanda:              Well, this was on the end of the row on the row house. So I think it would be more creepy if it was the middle of the row, and there was no reason.

Julia:                     Yeah.

Amanda:              But this is mad scary. "But again, the previous owner spoke to the driver of that truck, and he said he had no idea what happened." And I realize this might be a thing people say when they have accidents, they fall asleep or when they're impaired, whatever situation, but it is a creepy happenstance, that it happened twice.

Julia:                     Yeah, that it's happened twice, yeah.

Amanda:              "That guy also said to my cousin, if he had noticed that no flowers or plants grow in the garden, and indeed, nothing was growing there. So by now, my cousin is freaked out. They don't really live there anymore. They're scared to go back and also know that they have to sell it again." I guess a family house or something.

Julia:                     Yeah.

Amanda:              "But my cousin doesn't want to sell it to some unsuspecting couple again." Thank you, break the cycle.

Julia:                     That's why you need a ghost inspector.

Amanda:              "He wants to make sure the house is clean before doing so. He first contacts a medium after hearing them on a radio program about hauntings. Through the show, he got in contact with them, who is apparently one of the best. She goes into the house and then tells my cousin the issue. The house is built on a crossroads. And on this one, that was just outside of town, was where the British, during their long occupation, would hang those who fought against them. The regiment that was there the longest was led by a feared British soldier, and he was the cause of the disturbances. He said that was also the reason the spirits could not pass over and that the marching that was heard sometimes was that of his soldiers.

                                She also stated that the house was in desperate need of cleansing and that there were so many souls trapped there that no one in the house would ever be happy until they were rid of the ghosts." It sounds like a way to upsell their services.

Julia:                     I was going to say that.

Amanda:              "But this medium did not claim to do the cleansing. Instead the cousin contacted first a priest to perform an exorcism, though this was a very young and inexperienced priest," and then in parentheses, "even though the Catholic church have exorcisms, they don't really believe in them."

Julia:                     That's actually very true. For an actual exorcism, you have to contact the Vatican, and then the Vatican doesn't really ever hand out permission to do exorcism, so a lot of priests do it on the sly, quote unquote.

Amanda:              Or in some cases, I think there was a story like this, help the parishioner and talk to them and bring them through the emotional experience of letting go of this fear.

Julia:                     Right. Basically, you have to provide a ton, a ton of proof for the Vatican to give any shit about this kind of stuff.

Amanda:              Sounds like a great TV show. "Well, this priest did help out with the exorcism, and the spirit of the soldier apparently appeared or at least the priest said he saw a helmet rise through the floor and managed to shatter a mirror on the wall in the other room. The priest at this point left and did not return."

Eric:                       You'd think there was a ghostly visage of a head under the helmet, because that would be spooky, or do you think it was just one helmet that floats up and then sinks back down?

Amanda:              I think it just made it to the helmet. I think it just made it to the helmet level, and they were like nope, then left.

Julia:                     That sounds right.

Eric:                       Because I like the idea of it being like comes up just to his eyes, and he's like no, I'm good.

Amanda:              Nah, I don't want to hang out here.

Julia:                     Just pushes it back down into the floor, like nope.

Amanda:              Well, following this, the cousin contacted multiple religious leaders and several of them tried, but couldn't. He started to get desperate, and finally, he was contacted by a white witch who had heard his story and said she could help. After months of trying, she managed to cleanse the house, though it took a good number of weeks.

Julia:                     And probably a lot of money.

Amanda:              And strangely enough, the moment the house was cleansed, rose bushes started to grow in the front garden.

Julia:                     Whoa.

Amanda:              That's an extreme situation. That's not just weeds and pansies.

Julia:                     That's just got to pop up. Was it just starting to creep out of the dirt, or was it like all of a sudden, there's a bush?

Amanda:              I don't know.

Eric:                       I think the witch just snuck in in the middle of the night and replanted like a bush she had grown. Like this will work perfectly.

Julia:                     You guys haven't been using fertilizer. That's why nothing grows.

Amanda:              Needless to say, my cousin and by then, his ex girlfriend, sold his house as quickly as possible, and thankfully, he'd never had an incident to date. Well, hope you enjoyed that one. Tash.

Julia:                     That was very good. I really liked that one.

Eric:                       I liked it. I liked it.

Julia:                     I appreciate a listener or someone who's being haunted that does research and then follows through with everything.

Amanda:              Yeah, there was a emotional arc of research there. I really appreciated it.

Julia:                     That's a full movie arc that we just saw there.

Amanda:              Oh yeah.

Eric:                       Julia, would you like to do your next story?

Julia:                     Yeah. So I have an email from Allie, and the subject line is "Bewitched Teddy Bears and a Clairvoyant Kitty Cat."

Amanda:              I want to know.

Eric:                       That's a lot.

Julia:                     I picked the ones that are a lot.

Eric:                       I don't know what kind of a lot it is, but it is a lot.

Julia:                     It's just a lot going on there. Okay. So Allie says, "I've got two stories for you. I'll try to keep them brief, but I'm a creative writing major, so insert shrug emoji here. My first story, like any other good, scary story is about my retail job at the mall. I work at a Build-A-Bear, which for anyone who doesn't know is exactly what it sounds like, a store where people can build their own teddy bears. It doesn't sound like a place that would be haunted, but even places with rainbow color schemes aren't exempt from the paranormal. For context, the back of the store is kind of wonky. Once you go into the employees only section, there's a hall that leads to the bathrooms and the back door, and a little offshoot room where we keep our inventory and the break room. The room is kind of like an L shape with the manager's area in the front, the inventory shelves along the sides, and then the break area and lockers in the back.

                                When you're in the break room, you can just barely see around the corner to the manager's area. This can lead to some kind of funky tricks of the light. I was on my break one night absolutely killing some Reese's cup. This is an important detail, not to the story or anything, but Reese's cups are very important to me." Same.

Eric:                       Yeah. Reese's Pieces are more important to me, but I'll happily take a Reese's cup.

Julia:                     I'd rather a Reese’s Cup. I almost said Reese’s Cup, how dare you? I would rather a Reese's cup than Reese's Pieces. I like the texture. I don't like the crunch as much.

Eric:                       Give me that crunch.

Amanda:              I think the true uniter of worlds is the big cup, which is a Reese's peanut butter cup with Reese's Pieces inside, which is the best combo.

Eric:                       I have to professionally disagree with you, Amanda.

Julia:                     I as well.

Eric:                       I was so excited for that big cup, and I think it is the worst of both worlds.

Amanda:              Really?

Eric:                       What is the best of both worlds, though, is they made a candy bar, that is essentially that, but it has full on chunks of Reese's Pieces in it, and it is a choice peanut butter confection candy bar thing, much better than the big cup.

Julia:                     Well, listeners, let us know your thoughts on chocolate and peanut butter candy.

Amanda:              And everyone watch Bon Apetit's Gourmet Makes series on YouTube where their beautiful pastry chef with a very stylish gray streak, Claire, recreates famous candy. And she recently, as a recording, did one on the peanut butter cups.

Julia:                     Oh, I love Claire so much. Okay. So, Allie continues. "I turned around to throw my trash away, and out of the corner of my eye, I see something move. The room is small enough that I would have heard someone come in, and the movement was going towards the door, which meant that the person would have had to have been there in the shelves, which again, I would have heard because I had been there for 15 minutes and hadn't seen or heard anyone.

                                So obviously, when I went to look, no one was there, because I wouldn't be writing about this if it had just been another person. But like I said, the way the room was set up made it easy for your mind to play tricks on you, especially when you're working late. So I just shrugged it off and turned around again to put my stuff back in my locker before going back out.

                                Then I hear the crinkle of a plastic bag and a soft thump."

Amanda:              No.

Julia:                     "I know the idea of a bag full of unstuffed teddy bears falling to the floor doesn't sound that scary, but the shelves that we keep the bears on are a few feet deep. The only way a bag could have fallen off the shelves is if it was basically hanging on the edge or if someone threw it. And the shelves weren't full enough for it to be hanging on the edge."

Amanda:              Or there was a raccoon who was extremely hungry on a sugar high and perhaps knocked it off.

Julia:                     They continue, "I was definitely done with my break. I told my manager what happened, trying to play it off as a joke, like oh, stupid me, I got spooked by nothing. Do you know what her response was?"

Amanda:              What?

Julia:                     "Oh, that's just Bob." Excuse me?

Amanda:              No.

Eric:                       No. Can't just be Bob.

Amanda:              Institutionalized acceptance of hauntings.

Eric:                       Not enough explanation.

Amanda:              Oh no.

Julia:                     "Turns out there was a manager who worked there about seven or eight years ago named Bob, who was super dedicated to the place. When he died in a car accident, he apparently decided to stick around."

Amanda:              No.

Julia:                     "My manager says it's so he can make sure none of us screw anything up. According to--"

Amanda:              That's dark.

Eric:                       No, I don't need a ghost. Like what is the punishment if you screw something up from the afterlife?

Julia:                     Not good.

Amanda:              No, no, no. Too much.

Julia:                     Getting scared by throwing half filled bears, I guess. In terms of projectiles, I guess one of the better ones, pretty soft. "According to the manager I was working with that night, scaring the crap out of you is Bob's way of welcoming you to the company, both in life and in death. I know some of my coworkers have stories, but I haven't gotten permission to tell them. So I'll let you guys know if I have any updates on Bob, the bear builder."

Amanda:              That's dark. I hope Bob had more things in his life that he was really passionate about.

Julia:                     I mean, apparently not. Sorry, Bob. I don't want to disparage your memory, but you are haunting a Build-A-Bear.

Amanda:              Well, I think that's a pretty dark place to end, so instead ...

Julia:                     Hold on. I still have the second half of this story.

Amanda:              Oh.

Julia:                     Which Allie says, "My second story is currently ongoing, but it's still kind of creepy, kind of cool, so I wanted to share with you what I have. Earlier this year, I brought home my new fur baby, Curacao. She is a little black cat, who I named after the main character in a basketball anime. Please don't judge me."

Amanda:              Sounds wonderful

Julia:                     Yeah, I know, it sounds very cute. "Since I got her, she's had this weird habit of going down to the basement and crying for no discernible reason, like loud, help me crying. But every time I go downstairs to see what's wrong, she would just be sitting in the middle of the basement looking at me. There would even be a few times where she would sit on top of the basement steps and meow. A few months ago, I was digging out winter clothes from storage and came across one of the cat toys we bought for my old childhood cat who died about six years ago.

                                Smokey was super good at hiding things, and we never found it. Curacao was down there with me and immediately pounced on the toy as soon as I knocked it loose. So I figured that must have been what she was crying about. Literally, 30 minutes later, guess what she was doing. The only conclusion I have is that my basement haunted, and I'm too much of a chicken to do anything about it except stand five feet away from the door and throw salt on the steps and hope for the best."

Amanda:              Can't hurt.

Julia:                     Can't hurt. Oh man, the cat's still crying, even after they found the toy, not good.

Amanda:              Well, I have a light hearted piece of follow-up that I figured we would end this episode on. So this is from Chelsea in response to Eric's creepy sleep talking in episode 118.

Julia:                     Oh boy, here we go.

Amanda:              Chelsea writes, "My mom sleep talks regularly and has for her entire life. The weird thing is that she'll often open her eyes and respond to me or my step dad as though she's awake. The only way we know she's asleep is that she is A, talking really fast and B, saying things that are complete nonsense. So I've taken to writing or recording her when she does this because it's hilarious. And here are some of my favorite examples. While reading this, please imagine that she's opened her eyes very wide and is staring at me in confusion."

Julia:                     Oh boy.

Amanda:              "No, no, no, you don't understand, my spine needs to be slightly elevated."

Julia:                     Oh good.

Amanda:              "Mom, happily, Jane and the lobsters. Me, what are lobsters? Mom, they're pretty much the same as lobsters, except they're in a lab."

Julia:                     That's cute.

Amanda:              "Mom, eyes wide with an angry tone, I heard the triple double bubble's down there. I told you when I made my notes last night it was the triple double bubble layer."

Julia:                     Okay, interesting.

Amanda:              "My friend will say you're wild, you never clean up your wine list, and I'll say yeah."

Julia:                     Same.

Amanda:              So very suddenly, "the birds, they're ancient!"

Julia:                     They are.

Amanda:              "Okay, little miss I jumped on a pebble and it turned into an everlasting mineral." And then finally, in an upset tone, "You didn't say you wanted to go fishing, the broken up camper cropers."

Julia:                     I have no idea what you said those last words.

Eric:                       What was that last word, cropers?

Amanda:              Croopers.

Eric:                       Croopers?

Julia:                     What is that?

Amanda:              I don't know. But I found them hilarious.

Eric:                       And we never will.

Amanda:              But Chelsea says they are very simultaneously amused and creeped out when she does this, so I usually egg her on and try to get her to say more, like Eric said.

Julia:                     Well, you should see if you can move your mother to a different location and see if she sleep talks. Because apparently, that solves the problem.

Amanda:              Apparently. Well, thank you for joining us for another episode of your urban legends. Please let us know, we always love getting your emails. I appreciate everybody who's been including their pronouns and everybody who shares photos of their cute pets to take away the spooky feelings.

Julia:                     The spooky feelings do go away when I see cute puppers and cute kittens.

Eric:                       That inbox is a source of never ending nightmares in there, so a cute dog every so often definitely helps.

Julia:                     Yep. That's true.

Amanda:              Beautiful. So let's recap. What lessons have we learned today? I guess, if you hear rustling in the bushes, just run away.

Julia:                     Stick together when you're in a Girl Scout camp.

Eric:                       Probably just don't go camping.

Julia:                     Don't go camping, but also stick together if you're going to be in a Girl Scout camp.

Amanda:              Certainly don't keep snacks in your cabin if you do.

Julia:                     Dogs good usually.

Eric:                       Dogs good.

Amanda:              Cats creepy.

Julia:                     Sometimes, usually creepy.

Amanda:              And maybe don't work at a Build-A-Bear.

Julia:                     Oh, also do your research if you think your thing is haunted.

Amanda:              I know, maybe a white witch will come and save the day. Well, remember listeners, above all ...

Julia:                     Stay creepy.

Amanda:              Stay cool.