Baby, Can You Dig Your Ghost?

30 Oct

For a date night, and also my birthday present from Mike, we decided to participate in something a little different this year. *Cue the eerie Halloween soundtrack*

In the spirit of spooks and bumpy things in the night, we purchased two tickets to “The Ghost Writer Experience” hosted by Bill Murphy of SyFy’s “Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files” and Anita McMillian-Murphy. Check out their website here: You may remember from our previous write-up, that we met Bill and Anita at Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo back in September, and were impressed with them. Having seen the Ghostwriter case investigated on Fact or Faked, we were intrigued by the case, and the opportunity to experience it firsthand. While we were interested in this event partly for the Halloween-esqe fun, we were ever-aware that this was to be an excursion into the lives of real people, who have reportedly been living this experience, both day and night, for around two decades. That being the case, we knew we were to venture far from the commonplace hoke of plastic skeletons and fake cobwebs.

What is the “Ghost Writer” you ask? In the early 90’s a couple of guys taking pictures in their Los Angeles home, with their Polaroid camera, discovered….. anomalies in the instant photographs; Ethereal blobs of light and other strange shapes and faces.  At first they thought the camera had some kind of defect, but then in 1993, in answer to a question that someone had asked before taking a picture, words appeared in the photograph.

Friends were eventually told of the phenomenon and were also invited to take pictures with their own Polaroid cameras and experience the event for themselves. The result? Years of evidence, thousands of photos, complete with entities unexplained  and hundreds of direct answers to questions ethereally imprinted in clear English and often in Latin.

Over the past 20 years many experts have tried to de-bunk this case. Reported by CNN in the late 90’s, investigated by Fox network’s “Sightings” also in the late 90’s, and then more recently examined by SyFy’s “Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files” and numerous others; all have been unable to debunk the case. Although some photography experts are able to get similar results using certain techniques, no one has been able to duplicate them without artifacts of some sort. And even those that achieved similar results invested hours of pain-staking work. (To watch the “Ghost Writer” episode on “Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files” click

I have to say this part, I was ready all day long; dressed, hair & make-up done in anticipation of our going. My handsome counter-part was hard to pry off the couch, and find a comb. The only reason we arrived at what he thought, at the time, was too early, was because I was basically pacing around the living room with purse and car keys in hand, finally driving him crazy enough to get his little butt in gear. (He’s not little, but apparently his butt has stopped growing- when he was like… four)

As it turned out, the second presentation (that he had planned on attending) had been canceled, and the only presentation was to begin an hour earlier. So we were on time, thanks to my tendency to not procrastinate. We arrived at Dearly Departed  in downtown Hollywood, and were warmly greeted by Bill Murphy and his beautiful wife, Anita. Bill mentioned that he is really enjoying Mike’s latest CD,  and asked if he’d brought any. He wanted to play it while we waited for a few more people to arrive. Alas, no. We’ve really got to learn to pimp those CDs everywhere!

We chatted briefly then took our seats. As they prepared to start, Bill said he had an announcement. Anita hands him a wrapped gift with two awesomely Halloweeny cupcakes complete with lit candles and Bill proceeds to lead the whole group in singing “Happy Birthday” while walking in my direction. I was looking around thinking, wow! Someone else has a birthday too? Nope, it was for ME! I was genuinely surprised and flattered that they cared to remember my birthday! They got me a present too. Paranormal Activity 3 on DVD! (Perfect because the kids had been recently begging us to get it)  By the way, they also bought pizza for the whole group. As I’ve said before, Bill and Anita are very cool people.

The presentation began as Bill shared clips from the investigation done on “Fact or Faked” and afterward we examined several of the photos which were displayed throughout the room. These pictures are intriguing to say the least.  We then loaded ourselves into the luxury tour vans for a ride to the actual house where these events are still taking place. We are bound not to reveal the location, so please don’t ask!  Our driver, Brian, was hilarious. He entertained us with little known Hollywood trivia, fun facts and much laughter was had which made the trip go by quickly. When we arrived, one of the residents of this hundred year old home welcomed us inside and we all took our seats in the living room. He showed us some private videos of their experiences, discussed how the pictures first came about and tried to fill in some of the more personal experiences he and others have had over the past 20 years. He showed us the “hot spots” a psychic had pointed out, and where they have witnessed both visual and physical paranormal events.  In our view, and we can be fierce skeptics, he came across as honest, transparent, and sincere. He seemed to us as someone who had been deeply impacted emotionally by these experiences. We were taken outside to see another area of interest: some concrete stones, one with a name, and small hand & foot print with “Dean ’44” on it and one perfectly square stone off to the side of it, which was completely out of place. The house resident asked for theories regarding the stone, and it was a stumper. Mike thinks the stone might indicate that someone had buried a time capsule there.

Back in the house, we all watched Bill open sealed packages of Polaroid film which he had purchased on Ebay, and load several cameras which were given to the group to use.  We asked questions of those not visible, we took photos, and we practically emptied the cameras and found….nothing at all out of the ordinary.

The house resident had informed us that since the passing of a friend in 2007 who was also a practicing psychic, the ghostwriting had become far more rare. The psychic had spent years investigating the house, and as we witnessed on video, had a knack for communicating in a way that achieved results on the cameras of various witnesses. We were informed that it had been some months, in fact, since they had received any written messages. They had even tried the previous evening with another tour group with no written messages to be seen. (They did however, have a very interesting dark shadow in the shape of a person in one of the photos)

Before wrapping things up for the evening, we all posed for two group pictures.  The group seemed to take little interest in watching these develop, probably as a result of experiencing nothing unusual in the dozens of others. Then… Mike notices on one of the group shots, white fuzzy blobs and ghostly looking tendrils. In disbelief I look and comment on how it must still be developing. He says “No, this is the first one we took!” Sure enough, the second was fully developed and this one was as well. You can imagine all the commotion and excitement we had. No words on it but there was ghosty stuff!

With this, Bill asked us if we’d like to do an EVP session (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) and we all agreed.

The entire group had opportunity to ask questions, which we did. Among the questions Mike asked, “What is your favorite song?”, (and while he meant it as a serious question, drew one or two chuckles, as he always does) “What is under the square stone outside?” and “Is there anyone buried under the house?” After a host of questions from Bill and other members in our group, Bill played it back and we intently listened. During that, the house resident took another picture of us listening to the EVP playback.  Before the playback had concluded someone exclaimed, “A Word!” As I’m typing this, chills are walking up my spine just like they did in that moment. We all gathered around and looked at the picture. The picture that we had witnessed being taken and witnessed the developing process of had a clearly materialized word across it.  The word “dig”.

You can imagine the excitement. All of us were ready to grab a shovel. Another picture was taken, but the batteries were running low on the camera and it failed to eject.  When it did finally eject, it was mostly destroyed by being stuck in the camera.  There were letters on that one as well, but having been mostly destroyed, it was illegible.

Was ‘dig’ an answer to one of Mike’s questions regarding things buried? Or was it the imperative wish of one detached from our mortal coil?

With those questions in mind, we, satisfied for now, loaded our living souls back into the luxury touring vans, and headed for leveler dwellings.

Can you see it?

We will let you know if the home owners decide to….dig.


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