Category: writing

Podcast will be released Wednesday this week

Hey guys, sorry that I won’t be able to release the podcast today─ it has been an absolute terror at work these last few days. I run an HVAC parts store and we had our first real 90° weather this past weekend. Suffice to say, I have not had a moment to breathe before bed. Man, I look forward to when I can hire another employee. -_-zzz I managed to record the show early mornings before my workouts so I should have it finished tonight and I will post it tomorrow! Just wanted to let everyone know what is going on.

It will be here soon,

xoxo─

Grey

The Haunting Hour Episodes 2 & 3 are out!

So if you are a little out-of-the-loop, The Haunting Hour podcast is back on the air! I kicked off the new season with a short story called “My Family Is Falling Apart.” They will be released in four parts, the last to be released soon.

Synopsis:

My Family Is Falling Apart is an audio thriller that follows the aftermath of a family torn apart. The main character, Tom, doesn’t want to let go and lose hope that one day Jenna may come back. In the midst of all that has happened Tom and Jenna’s daughter, Karis, begins acting strangely─ claiming to see monsters in her room. Of course all children go through that, especially when they experience divorce. Tom believes it is a phase that will pass─

Until he sees the creatures too.

Come along for the ride as we discover the sinister truth behind Our Family Is Falling Apart.

You can check them all out here, parts I-III:

Part I

Part II

Part III

Folklore And The Supernatural – A Figment Of Our Imagination, Or Real?

Since we could put our thoughts and history on cavern walls we have mentioned otherworldly beings or gods. The Egyptians even had a word for our spirit, something akin to ‘soul’ or ‘chi’─ that word is Ka. The Christian bibles (Protestant, Catholic, so on and so forth) mention a fierce, yet loving god with beings called angels to fight for humanity souls (spirits) and be at the Christian god’s side when they must purge satan, his followers, and his fallen city of angels, casting them into a burning ‘lake’ for all of eternity. Different branches also believe that you gain a second chance by finding your way from a place called purgatory into heaven or be doomed to wander this in-between forever.

This isn’t exclusively Christian. Japan’s practice of Shinto (which labeling Shinto in itself is sort of a foreigner’s way of explaining an umbrella belief of the religion, such as the many different versions of Christianity─ it is region based) goes into a very lengthy process of the family ensuring their loved one is at peace. The dead must be cremated, and the family must first remove the bones with chopsticks starting at the feet to be placed first so that they are not upside down in the urn. The ashes can be divided among family and friends, but the bones and ashes remaining must be placed at the family shrine afterward. (all of the bones!)

The older beliefs were that the afterlife was a dark realm, much like Greek mythology where there is a river separating the living from the dead. The more modern take is that people will go where their spirits are suited to go, however many funerals are a blend of Shinto and Buddhist beliefs. A popular view of the blending beliefs is to follow a 20 day step-by-step process to ready the spirit (Reikon) for death.

If you don’t, it can cause the spirit to become vengeful. (Onriyo, a generic term for ‘ghost’ or ‘spirit’ can come back from ‘purgatory’ to avenge wrongdoings in our world, known as Yurei. Or, if you happened to be the person that wronged or killed the person that is seeking revenge─ Ultimate. Payback.) This has a striking resemblance to the ghost/zombie creature from Scandinavian folklore, Gjenganger who is a monster that comes back to the world to finish up old business, or seeking revenge before passing on.

Isn’t she a cutie? ^~^

There is no stopping a Yurei, they can physically manifest themselves into our world and harm or kill people. While this is just the tip of the iceberg─ you can see how many cultures have their own unique spin on deities, spirits, or realms beyond our own.

The belief of the supernatural is still strong in many cultures, even today in 2022. The differences between many of us are the belief of power the supernatural can hold. While some believe that ghosts, even if they are annoying or scary, cannot kill or harm you─ some cultures believe ghosts can manifest into physical form and can both harm and kill you. (Like the Yurei) You can find many Eastern cultures that believe this way, most notably China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam. This is why they hold festivals to honor and remember the dead to keep them happy.

Think they have some weird beliefs on death and the supernatural spirits? Check out these guys from other cultures:

ManananggalThe Body-Separating Vampire (shapeshifter). Courtesy of the Philippines.

The name literally comes from the Tagalog term ‘to cut in half’ which in English translates to ‘separator or remover’. It prefers to prey on sleeping expectant mothers (yeah, as if pregnant ladies need any more added stress) and uses a elongated appendage, think butterfly, to suck out the heart of the unborn baby or to suck out the blood from someone that is sleeping. It also targets newly weds or men that have left women at the altar. So, not only does this horrific creature feast on expectant mothers and their unborn child─ for your viewing pleasure it also flies in the sky sans-legs complete with intestines and all.

oh. my. a-god.

The good news? If you can locate it’s lower body, just smear salt, ash, or crushed garlic on it. It won’t be able to re-join with it’s body and will die at sunrise. It’s like a vampire on steroids. o,o

Speaking of eating babies, check out the Japanese Yamauba (Female Mountain Ogres)

They are said to be the older women in town that were marginalized and then forced to live in the mountains. While they prefer babies, they will also feast on any passerby’s. The neatest part? They have a mouth under their hair. Om Nom Nom.

Yamauba | Yokai.com

An older lady in Russian folklore has a bit of a mixed review on good/evil. The Baba Yaga:

Seguindo os passos da História: Baba Yaga

She wanders through the woods, riding a mortar with a pestle cane. She offers help to those that seek guidance, but in many versions you must pay a price. And in original tales Baba Yaga is portrayed more as a witch that tricks or steals children then making them do chores, fattening them up, and then eating them. Hmm…Hansel and Gretel anyone?

Pinky Pinky – The South African Bathroom Horror

Much like our tales of Bloody Mary, or Japan’s Hanako San─ This creatures preys on women that try and use the public bathroom. Pinky Pinky has a shock of bright pink hair and is half human, half creature. It chooses to target women in their most vulnerable moment─ especially girls that wear pink underwear. It will attack and sometimes become enraged enough to murder. (Bizzaro~) According to legend only women can see it, but over the years boys have claimed to have been attacked by it.

Your childhood myth tormentor Pinky Pinky comes to life in this conceptual  imagery series [Photos]

How about the U.S. urban legends?

Check out Slender Man:

Even though this guy was created on a creepypasta internet meme on the Something Awful internet forum by user Eric Knudsen (aka ‘Victor Surge’) in 2009, it still sends thrills and chills into fans everywhere. Believe it or not, it started off as a Photoshop contest to create paranormal images. While many fans argue over which version of him is right, the most popular version is an unnaturally tall, slender entity with pale skin, wears a suit, with a featureless head and face, and tentacles. The German people had a tale about a tall man as well called Der Großman – Pronounced Der Grossman (I like to say ‘The Gross Man’ lol!)

The lore:

So, here’s the deal─ Slenderman was never filed under Mythology and therefore does not have an official background story that is ‘canon’ to the ‘original’. That being said, Slender started off being a humanoid type monster that would prey on mostly children. It had a very Lovecraftian vibe to it─ madness, another dimension, fantastic/horrific creatures in modern settings. Meaning anywhere ‘safe’ you could turn, the worst can happen. Slender can slenderwalk─ travel anywhere at anytime without being detected. Some theories suggest that he is an interdimensional being or 4th dimensional creature. Others think he started as a myth and then was turned into a real being called a Tulpa. The Tulpa theory is that Slenderman can be a thoughtform creature─ meaning that people as a collective have ‘thought’ Slender into existence, making him a real being.

The one that most people can agree on is that Slenderman only starts coming around when you think about him, or talk about him. (Her? They? It?) I dare you to not think about it. 😉

Around the world we seem to be drawn to creatures of the night. They slink around our homes and prey upon our friends or families. Or how about the notorious Slender Man, Black-Eyed Children, and Shadow People─ famous urban legends in the U.S. I’m particularly fond of these myself and love the chill that runs down my spin as I imagine them waiting in the dark, ready to take me to the other realm.

So, I too find myself wondering─ Are these just urban legends or are there elements of truth to our worst nightmares? What do you think friends?

Pleasant dreams.

xoxo─ Grey

Back To The Grind – A Pleasant Reminder That I Live in Texas

It’s Tuesday, I’m recovering from a previously long and exhausting workweek. The AC industry is no joke in Texas. Many families can barely afford to cover bills, let alone pay to have a service company come out.

The DIY industry has boomed over the last decade or so since the internet has been empowering homeowners with knowledge. Which is kind of great and horrible at the same time.

Since the beginning of the year, I have progressively watched the cost of A/C equipment go up by 5%-10% twice in the first quarter, and now they are saying it will go up again. As a business owner, you come to expect these sort of setbacks. People expect things to go up a bit, especially with the state of things recently. But try explaining to your regulars when the cost goes up by 25% – 40%

Refrigerant cost has more than doubled since last year, copper has gone up a whopping 200%, and steel a staggering 400%. Think that’s bad?

Shipping is far, far worse. Yes, we can all guess that because of COVID-19 things have progressed slower than usual but this is an entirely different beast. A shipping container from Asia, on average, last year was around $2k per container.

This year? That number has gone up to $20k as of late. An 800% increase.

Let’s just think about that for a second. 800% increase.

Even domestic shipping and freight have been steadily increasing every month since last year.

It’s a tough time for many business owners, it’s a tough time for customers, it’s just tough.

As you can imagine the unique industry I work in brings in some…characters to put it mildly. Imagine living in Texas during the pandemic, with a slew of under-educated, narcissistic mans-man sorts that consider themselves godly church-folk. Now add in just enough YouTube knowledge to make them dangerous and the ability to buy the parts online and buddy─ you’ve got yourself an insufferable man-child.

I’ll definitely take these guys any day over an engineer, however. I’ll explain that particular hell in another episode.

When you live in a place like Dallas, you know that your experience will be different depending on which part of the city, and neighboring cities you are in. If you are anywhere outside of Downtown proper or just outside of a metropolitan area, without a doubt you are dealing with apathetic, single-minded individuals that find this whole pandemic to be blown out of proportion. While, just like any sensationalist news, that does come with some truth, ffs have a brain.

I have signs posted everywhere. Before someone walks in, after they walk inside, all of our employees wear them. And yet, for ever 1 person wearing a mask, 3 do not wear one.

Look. I don’t like masks, I’m vaccinated, I constantly wash my hands make a real effort to not touch my face or dig up my butt crack at work and touch other things, and I keep my distance. But you know what, I wear a flipping mask. So why, in the nine hells, can someone not wear a mask for fifteen minutes or less?

Because, dear friends, I may live near the dessert but I’m drowning in a sea of idiots.

They all, literally, have the exact and I mean verbatim, word vomit. I’ve even heard such phrases as, “my wife is a nutritionist and we refuse to get vaccinated” as if she is at the pinnacle of medical discovery and working hard on the front lines with dying patients. “I’m vaccinated,” yeah, so am I and viruses mutate, next. “The flu has killed more than Covid-19″─ herpa derp─ “I’ve had it, it’s nothing─ berpadee derp herp─ “It’s a conspiracy against white men and it’s racist─ derpa herpadee snort snoot─ “Biden is going to be the ruin of this country─ deeherpa doo da─”

These are not made up conversations, yes, these people do exist. P.S. For anyone jumping on the Right v Left train and that can only identify with one side of the argument and mudslinging bullshit, please go over to the children’s table and learn something called critical thinking.

Biden, by the way, is not democratic. He is what the Republican party used to represent.

The sheer amount of idiocy would surprise many people. I’m not talking about normal people ignorance. I’ve had customers come in for a few years now, we got along great, had differences in opinions politically but nothing we couldn’t ever reach middle ground on. This has been such a weird last two years and really makes me sad. It’s like people have gone completely polar opposite on damn near everything happening. They just need a reason to take their anger out on everything, and everyone. I can’t believe the words leaving people’s mouths right now.

At this point, I have no sympathy for people raised a certain way. When you cannot see reason, you cannot be reasoned with. Therefore, yes, you are a danger to society.

The amount of times that I have heard, “well, I haven’t gotten it once and I’ve been fine, or, everyone in my family got it but me,” is embarrassingly high.

Yeah, no, you got it you just didn’t have symptoms. Congrats, you’re a super-spreader. Even if you didn’t get it, your family did and they spread it. And I’m sure if your dumbass didn’t get a shot, your family damn sure didn’t. Unless you have a teen or young adult with some sense in the house that got vaccinated. For those that seem to think this is a good thing that weeds out the population, while logically I get what you are saying, fuck right off you miserable asshole.

You want to know something? I’m about to get real savage. If you are too fucking stupid to not see people getting this, struggling with their lives, even some of your precious leaders getting it and dying or fighting for their lives, then I have zero sympathy for you. As a matter of fact, I think there should be a waiver that if you refuse to get a vaccine, you also wave your right to get treated in a hospital.

Just so there is no confusion, if you are waiting on a vaccination and on a waiting list─ you are just fine to be treated. For the assholes that try and get clever by being on a permanent waitlist, you can go ahead and get ready to spend a long time in prison. Let’s go ahead and leave the hospital beds open for people that are actually trying to help themselves and others. You got a strong opinion that you undoubtedly stand behind, you’re a big strong adult, you can take care of yourself. The only exception to this rule are children for obvious reasons.

But I digress.

I explained the earlier info to paint a picture of the type of customers we get daily. Today, I had a gentleman from Hong Kong impart top secret knowledge to me that the vaccines were poison, Japan can confirm apparently. 😐🙄

As frustrating as it all can be, at the end of the day it feels good being able to help families. Especially in times when it seems like we all desperately need it.

Anyway, these are my thoughts on a Tuesday. Have a great day lovelies. 💞

Xoxoxo

Grey