Sunday, October 21, 2007

it's just dust

I'd been watching the show Ghost Hunters on Sci-Fi since it first aired, but it was really in a "I'll watch it when I catch it flipping channels" kind of fashion. It wasn't til the past few months that I really started keeping up with it. Juli's gotten into it as well, and for the past month it's been Ghost Hunter's marathon around the house, what with it being on every so often on Sci-Fi and then us having purchased some of the DVD's.

Of course the fascination with the show is the paranormal investigations, but part of the appeal is that they don't go blindly looking for Ghosts. They go in very skeptical, and trying to debunk the findings. If someone claims they saw a shadow following them in their bedroom, they go into trying to find a real physical explanation for it first before just assuming that it was paranormal activity. It's more logical that a shadowy figure is created by car's headlights coming off the hill and shining in through the window at an odd angle. But if they find no explanation to debunk it, then they can start looking at a paranormal aspect.

The people themselves are very charming. The two lead investigators, Grant and Jason, are fun to watch. The back story of them being plumbers for Roto-Rooter by day and being paranormal investigators at night is interesting, as are the other members of TAPS (The Atlantic Paranormal Society.) And the more you watch these guys in action, the more you realize how funny these guys are. I think that's part of the larger appeal of the show. This is real, these people are real down to earth people, and they're intelligent folks with a real passion for the paranormal and wanting to help people understand what they know about the paranormal.

It's at times scary, but it's also fascinating and even more still when they have a case where they don't find any paranormal activity at all. It's just entertaining and interesting to see how they come to their conclusions regardless of them finding a ghost.

So of course when we learned Jason and Grant would be making an appearance at Greensboro College, we had to go. I didn't know anything about what they would be talking about, I mean of course they would be talking about ghosts and the paranormal, but we didn't know if we'd actually get to meet them, if they'd be able to sign anything, or really what all would be going on. We just wanted to see them.

Box office wouldn't be selling tickets til 7:30. The show didn't start til 9. By the time we got there at 6:00 there was already a crowd. By 7:00 there was a line down the street for about a block. I didn't really realize how popular this show was until this night. We got into the theatre at 8:00 and the house was packed in no time. The auditorium sat about 800 people (so I was told) and there wasn't an empty seat in there by 8:30.

We met some very interesting people. Even a couple who came all the way down from Tenessee and a group of ladies who we were more than happy to help adjust their camera flashes for. I loved hearing the people around us. I get a kick out of how there were people scattered throughout the audience who were all of sudden some sort of expert on the paranormal. People all around us showing eachother pictures saying stuff like "this shadow here behind my head is obviously paranormal because it was bent weird and that edge right there is obviously a ghost's nose and my nose shadow doesn't look anything like that nose shadow."

The guys finally came out. Heard they came straight from the airport directly to the show. The crowd went wild. Seriously. These guys have got some major fans. And they don't disappoint. They came out and they were immediately everything from the show and more. They were smart, charming, and extremely funny. That's Grant, pictured just above.
And here's Jason. They did a powerpoint presentation on exactly what it was they did, and showed us some of the finer points of paranormal investigation, including pics, video, and many very interesting and funny stories about some of the other TAPS members. They really broke down their philosophies, their approach on investigation, and what they believe and do not believe.
I was pleased when they covered the topic of Orbs. I remember when I was much younger being fascinated by photos of orbs, wondering if any of it was paranormal or not. For Jason and Grant they believe that Orbs don't really have a place in paranormal investigation. If you watch the show then you're familiar with how the TAPS members easily dismiss most "Orbs" they may catch on video as "Dust". Because the truth is most orbs photos can be easily explained as something else, a refraction of light, incidental illusions, or ... well .. dust. In an investigation it doesn't hold much weight if there is any doubt in what you are seeing, and most Orbs are doubtful. They did say that they do put faith in the existence of plasma lights, but excuse it as just proof of natural energy.

They also spoke of some their scarier encounters. The video from the St. Augustine Lighthouse Investigation (creepy) as well as other video. And they showed off a few EVP's (even creepier). If you don't know what an EVP is, watch the show, Grant will explain it.

We did get to meet them afterward. They signed our DVD. These guys were really cool. I felt bad for them cuz I could tell they were tired, but I have to say it was really nice to meet them. And for Juli's sake too, I'm glad she got to meet them, I know she really wanted to.

In hearing them talk and really getting a feel for the crowd around me, it became apparent to me that there is somewhat of a paranormal revolution going on. Before it was always just curious fascination or even a novelty when it came to shows like this, or just paranormal shows altogether, but because of these guys, and because of their approach and belief in what they do, I'm beginning to understand that there is an understanding occuring between those who believe and those who want to believe and also between skeptics and unskeptics (YOU pick a better word!).

I know for myself I've never really had a Ghostly encounter, but I've had strange occurences, none I consider scary, but many I've always found inspiring and enilghtening. And for many others out there they are beginning to see the paranormal as something not to fear, but something to accept and behold. It's comforting to hear Jason and Grant talk, and realize what I've believed in for a while about this stuff, is what they believe in, and it's what many other people are starting to belive in as well.

I know none of that made any sense what so ever. Let's just say, I believe there is nothing to fear.

Well, as usual, I've got work to do. I think I've found a web designer I can work with, and someone who can keep up with all of the updating and what not, which takes a huge load off my back. This way I can just concentrate on making these episodes and not have to worry about all the website details.

Also I think I've very well found a camera person, as well as a few potential cast members. So let's pray I find no more flake outs. I don't have time for it.

If you'll excuse me, off I go to fundraise, and make a giant monster.

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