Voices of the Weird Archive

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Looking for a place to find all of the past Voices of the Weird quotes? Well, the archive is now up and running. Not much there…yet. But just click on the “Voices” link on the menu bar running along the top of this page. Or just click here to be whisked away to the Voices of the Weird!

 

 

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Voices of the Weird: Get That Out of the Basement

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“You need to get that out of the basement. If mom comes home and sees it, she’s gonna freak. Just wrap a tarp around it. Make sure you scrub the floor, too.” 
   
                                –Man inside a Columbus-area Lowe’s, apparently shopping for padlocks

When In Doubt, Blame The Ghost Hunters

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According to KYPost.com, just before midnight on June 13th, two men broke into Bobby Mackey’s Music World in Wilder, Kentucky, making off with around $1,500.00 in alcohol. The pair, who were captured on multiple surveillance videos, apparently used a rock to break out a glass pane in the front door. Once inside, after failed attempts to get money from the register and a nearby cash machine, they filled their backpacks with liquor from the bar and fled. Police are currently investigating, but have no suspects in custody at this time.

And those, dear readers, are the facts in this case. So could someone please explain to me why the good folks at Cincinnati.com felt the need to report on the case and use the headline “Suspected ‘Ghost Hunters’ Make Off With Lots Of Liquor”? I’ve read the article several times and have yet to find any reason why “ghost hunters” should be considered suspects here. In fact, if you look at screen grabs from the actual surveillance footage, there’s a lot of things that would suggest they are not ghost hunters.

"Hey, I thought you said you were going to put the Ovilus in the cash register."

“Hey, I thought you said you were going to put the Ovilus in the cash register.”
–from KYPost.com

Case in point, the two suspects cannot be ghost hunters since they:

  • are not wearing matching black t-shirts and/or baseball caps
  • do not, upon noticing the cameras, immediately strike the standard Ghost Hunting pose: spreading your legs wide and crossing your arms
  • are not wearing headlamps
  • don’t take the time to set up their Base Camp
  • both appear to be lanky, clean-shaven, and devoid of tattoos. Everyone knows that to be a ghost hunter, you need to be portly, have facial hair, and be tatted up…or all three, if you want to be taken seriously
  • do not stop the robbery to ask “is there anyone here with us tonight?”
  • were able to leave the premises without being scratched, groped, or sucker-punched by a demon
"Dude, did you hear that? I totally just heard a voice whisper 'get out."

“Dude, did you hear that? I totally just heard a voice whisper ‘get out.”
–from KYPost.com

All joking aside, I really do take offense that ghost hunters are being accused of doing this. Granted, the Cincinnati.com article states that R.J. Seifert, a man “who does marketing for Bobby Mackey’s”, said that the “culprits may have been ghost hunters”, but he’s basing that solely on the fact that Bobby Mackey’s has a reputation as a “ghost place.”

So let me see if I get this straight: if I’m understanding Mr. Seifert correctly, he believes two people broke into the building and stole a bunch of liquor because they knew the place was supposed to be haunted.  Forgive me if I have trouble following the logic there. But interestingly enough, the KYPost article doesn’t include Seifert’s quote or even any mention of Bobby Mackey’s supposedly being haunted. In fact, that article clearly states that Bobby Mackey himself thinks the pair broke in specifically to steal the liquor and/or money.

"That's it! No more Mt. Dew, no more investigating."

“That’s it! No more Mt. Dew, no more investigating.”
–from KYPost.com

The way I see it, two young punks decided to break in and steal whatever they could jam into their backpacks. They clearly wanted money, but when they couldn’t get that, they stole the next best thing: the liquor. For me, despite Mr. Seifert’s claim, there is zero evidence ghost hunters are to blame and Cincinnati.com did some pretty lame reporting by deciding to go with that headline. If they were looking to be wacky, the reporter could have gone with a headline like “Spirits Stolen From Haunted Honky Tonk” (spirits=liquor, get it? I’m so clever) or the never-gets-old “Who Ya Gonna Call When Spirits Go Missing?” But to just throw out the claim that ghost hunters did it based on one man’s unsubstantiated claim is just plan lazy reporting.

So please, Cincinnati.com, leave the ghost hunting community out of this one. We’ve got enough problems of our own already with in-fighting, phony psychics, and “experts” who can magically get ghosts to perform on command.  We don’t need to add “felonious theft” to that list.

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To read the entire KYPost.com article, which includes links to the actual surveillance video, click here.

To check out Cincinnati.com‘s article, which alleges that ghost hunters may be to blame, click here.

Voices of the Weird: Hot Dogs In My Hand

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“I’m standing in the middle of Kroger, holding a package of hot dogs in my hand! Are you sure you want to have this conversation now?” 
   
                                –Man standing in the middle of Kroger, holding a package of hot dogs in his hand 

Pipe Bomb Discovered Near Ohio’s Legendary ‘Screaming Bridge’

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–WestChesterBuzz.com file photo, available here

I was originally going to post this story in the Ohio News of the Weird section. But as I’ve mentioned numerous times before on this site, ONW is for stories that, while weird, are a bit lighthearted. And to be honest, after reading through the reports several times, I don’t find anything the least bit funny.

According to reports, a device that is referred to as a “pipe bomb” or an “IED” (Improvised Exploding Device) was discovered on May 28th near the Maud Hughes Road bridge in Liberty Township. Over the years, the bridge has developed a reputation for being haunted and is now known locally (and among ghost enthusiasts) as the Screaming Bridge–its name being derived from one of the many urban legends associated with the bridge in which the ghostly screams of a woman can be heard coming from under/near the structure.

After the device was discovered, the authorities were summoned and they spent the next 90 minutes dismantling the bomb before removing it. Currently, there are no further developments in the case and it is not known who placed the bomb near the bridge or why, although Sergeant Rob Whitlock of the Butler County Sheriff’s Office is quoting as saying that “there doesn’t appear to be any maliciousness” involved. And that’s the point where this story suddenly takes a really dark turn.

Call me “dense” (you wouldn’t be the first…or last), but I fail to see how placing a homemade explosive device near a bridge is NOT malicious. Granted, Whitlock is basing his comment on where the device was found: his full quote is “in my opinion, from where the pipe bomb was found, there doesn’t appear to be any maliciousness to it”, but that still doesn’t hold water for me. In my eyes, placing a pipe bomb anywhere constitutes malicious behavior.

I also am a bit disturbed by Whitlock’s comment that whoever placed the pipe bomb “was just down there trying to make a big bang.” Oh, OK, now I feel better. It was just a bunch of wacky kids messing around and building a pipe bomb so’s they can make a big ol’ bang. Kinda like The Little Rascals used to do, right?

Look, I’m not trying to mock the way the Sheriff’s Office is handling things (OK, maybe just a little) nor am I trying to say there’s some big conspiracy at work here involving the coverup of some big plot to destroy bridges in Southern Ohio. Far from it. But here’s the thing: I’ve been to the Screaming Bridge many, many times over the years and it’s a dangerous place to go, even without pipe bombs. For one, the place has become a hangout for kids, partly due to it being fairly overgrown and secluded and partly because of its “haunted” reputation. Despite locals trying to keep the kids away, even to the point of erecting No Trespassing signs in recent years, people keep coming and either try to park on or near the bridge or else walk in and slide down the embankment to get to the bridge. Parking on any bridge is never a good idea, but it’s a horrible idea to try to park on the Screaming Bridge since its situated in such a way that there is a blind curve immediately after crossing the bridge. In other words, you’ll never see that oncoming car until it’s too late. And if you try to park alongside the bridge, there’s hardly any space to do so (and that space is usually posted, anyway) without you running the risk of rolling your car down the embankment.

Those who try to climb down the embankment also run the risk of injury as the steep incline is usually overgrown and hard to get a foothold on. There is a bit of a worn path there, but with even the slightest bit of rain, it becomes wet and slippery. When that happens, like it or not, you’re probably going to fall on your butt.

My point in all this is simple: even driving your car over the Screaming Bridge can be treacherous, especially if you have to keep an eye out for thrill-seeking kids darting in front of you. Whoever put that pipe bomb there surely knew that. So in my opinion, if the makers of the pipe bomb really were just looking “to make a big bang”, they were looking to scare passing motorists, ghost-hunting people, or both. Whatever the case, that’s clearly malicious. I know for a fact that people often go out to the Screaming Bridge, usually late at night, and hide there to scare motorists as they drive by. I’ve actually interviewed more than a few of the “Screamers” who have regaled me with their stories of hiding under the bridge, screaming as a car went by, and then running off, giggling, as they watch the car’s brake lights come on. I can’t say I condone that behavior, but it is the sort of “spooking” that has gone on for generations. Explosive devices are another story entirely, especially in the troubled times we’re living in today.

Bottom line? I used to tell people to stay away from the Screaming Bridge because of the terrain and the fact that it was posted. Now I feel I need to add “and some imbeciles like to go out there to make a big bang with pipe bombs.”

Stay safe, people. And I’ll be sure to do the same as I climb off my Soap Box now.

You can read the entire Cincinnati.com article by clicking here.

Voices of the Weird: Giant Doghouse

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“Oh, I used to love running in that neighborhood. But then a bunch of homeless dogs starting living there, so I stopped. I think that’s why they built that giant doghouse there; so that all those dogs had a place to live.”
   
                                –Woman outside my daughter’s gymnastics class 
                                    (BTW, the “giant doghouse” she made reference to is actually the local Humane Society)

The Voices of the Weird!

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I’m a weird guy. As long as I can remember, I’ve bit a little bit weird. And you know, I like it that way. “Normal” is boring. But for most people, they like to think they’re normal. Well, I have news for you. Over the years, I’ve discovered that if you give perfectly normal people a cell phone, a bunch of them are going to suddenly started acting really, really weird.

I don’t know what it is about a ringing cell phone that makes people drop all their filters and turn into giant Mr. and Mrs. Microphones, bellowing out their private conversations in public places for all to hear. The best are the people who talk about the most intimate of things in the loudest voice possible, never once taking into consideration that there are dozens of people within earshot, all shaking their heads and giggling…or being totally grossed out, depending on the topic at hand.

Keep in mind, I’m never eavesdropping when I hear these things. I have got way better things to do than to sit around and listen to other people’s cell phone conversations. No, these are things that I’m forced to hear because the person is standing right next to me,  talking in a voice so loud that I can’t help but overhear. You know the kind of phone conversations that I’m talking about; the ones where they’re talking so loud that if they end their sentence with a question, you have to stop yourself from answering it.

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