Monthly Archives: July 2011

Sometimes You Have to Stop and Shoot the Flowers

Driving home from Loveland this evening, it seemed almost as if God himself, aware of my lack of photography lately, felt the need to call my attention to a boiling summer storm that had backed to the sunset.

And sometimes, well, sometimes you just have to pull into the nearest parking lot, run across the highway, and start shooting.

I could get into the beauty of two of my most favorite natural phenomena sharing the sky with one another, both at their most intense at the exact moment, lost only minutes after. I could get into the thematic suggestion of the grays and darks versus the intensity of the color, to wax poetic about the duality of nature and deconstruct the sunset, but I think tonight I’ll let it stand on it’s own.

Copyright 2011 Karl Pfeiffer

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Changes.

While I do have a few personal stories from various friends and acquaintances developing in the eaves right now, they’re probably going to take a bit more time to come together, but I do want to share these stories with you. They do to me what a good ghost story does to the, well let’s be honest, more normal person (the one who doesn’t run around in the dark every weekend asking for knocks and groans), they make me feel like what’s being talked about could be in the room with me, could follow me home, could become my story far too easily…

Today though, I wanted to update you on our Stanley happenings, where a strange kind of drama has been unfolding these last few months.

You’re all up to date on the strange oddities of the early spring following my encounters with the Pig-Man at the end of December. If you’re not, information on the Pig-Man can be found here; https://karlpfeiffer.wordpress.com/2010/12/30/pig-men-and-psychics/ and information on the influx of the nature spirits and elementals on the night of the supermoon are recapped here; https://karlpfeiffer.wordpress.com/2011/05/24/summertime-and-supermoons-and-sprites/. And of course, the conversation with Lucy via Cell Censor in April https://karlpfeiffer.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/a-conversation-with-the-dead/.

This general timeline suggests that there was an influx in April of nature spirits that had the distinctly similar presence to the feel of the spirits in the neighboring Carriage House (as seen on Ghost Adventures. The Carriage House is condemned, locked and boarded up, and watched by security, so don’t go near it, it’s very dangerous). Around this time in April, preliminary renovation work was being done on the building, as the owner was interested in converting the building to a museum. In the first week of work, the primary overseers had strange experiences in their bedrooms of entities, one appearing as an indian chief, watching them sleep. Otherwise, during the day, piles of paint cans and boxes and materials would be strewn across the floor, and strange sounds accompanied their work.

Callea and I stepped into the building a few weeks after to see if the entities would approach us with their concerns in whatever way they felt. Trying to both stir them up and understand the situation, I dove into a questioning and, as spirit sessions in the dead of night go, I began to explain what was happening, to help these spirits understand what was going on, to see if they understood, to see if expressing it would stir their emotions. The night was quiet, but the intensity of the space was undeniable.

The following week, the workers approached Callea, wondering what it was that we’d done. The activity, they said, had grown quiet and settled once again.

It was barely weeks later, on the night of the Supermoon, that the influx of new spirits into the basement of the concert hall was so intense it was almost fully manifested. More information can be found on my blog about it. We’d assumed at the time that, driven from the construction and renovation work, these more reclusive spirits had taken to the next quietest place on the hotel grounds, the basement of the Concert Hall; Lucy’s room.

I look back on it now, and wonder if perhaps still it was more of a statement. How about we overrun your space? But the more I contemplate that approach, the less it makes sense. We want activity, we want experiences, I think the spirits know this. Even on hunts where I profess an interest in the spirit themselves and supplying company, deep down inside I do truly want most to have the experience. If the spirits from next door where indeed annoyed with us, I’m not sure running wild through our stomping grounds was any kind of problematic act.

Continuing this suggestion though, perhaps it’s not their migration that was intended to be problematic, but what’s happened afterward, if anything the elimination of activity.

Since the night of the supermoon, everything has changed.

Lucy talked to us for two hours from the bathroom, which she hadn’t been active in since before I began my investigations the prior August. At the time we didn’t think to ask about the move, or whether the new spirits were in any way intrusive. Since then, Lucy’s been quiet. Paul has been quiet. Usually with these two being quiet, our first worry isn’t intrusive spirits, but that we’ve annoyed them into a break (and with up to three ghost hunts a weekend this July, it’s possible). I’ve even wondered if Paul has accepted that we investigate until one and the hotel has approved us. These are the kinds of things we worry about telling our guest investigators, because who wants to hear our two main most spirits are quiet?

While Lucy and Paul might be hanging to the back, we’ve getting building interaction with new spirits. One in particular, beginning around March, is indicated by an extremely distinct smell, the overwhelming scent of body odor. Think of it, I like to say, as running up to give your dad a hug after a long hot summer day of yard work. It’s the kind of smell that isn’t easily confused with mildew or wet carpet; it’s sweat. The first night we smelled it, Connor and Callea and I took turns smelling each other, but no luck. Since then, we’ve smelled him as regularly as once every other weekend. In the last month he’s moved away from Lucy’s room alone to Paul’s room and then to the bathroom, where he stole a kiss on the cheek from one of our guests a week ago.

“Sweat!” She screamed, running across the room after a peck on the cheek. “It smells like sweat.” We explicitly do not tell our guest investigators of the kind of odor we detect to validate the external nature of the smell.

The week before, five people in two separate groups detected the smell in Paul’s room. Two weeks ago, we spoke to a spirit who refused to give its name in a twenty minute K2 session. Last night, Callea spoke to the same spirit in the same bathroom through the K2 where again it refused to give its name. (While names are significant in demonology, we have here no telling signs or standard indications of anything exceptionally negative.) For the past two weeks, Connor, one of our friends and tour guides, has reported the door in Lucy’s room closing twice. But not the main door that always closes, now it’s the bathroom door. A month ago, our security guard reported that everything felt different, that there was a kind of intimidation and upset in the air. Since, the activity has been strong, with loud unexplainable noises each time he finds himself there alone.

Now, I’d like to note that Callea and I don’t detect anything particularly malevolent, and we’re there each weekend. We’ve both been around angry spirits, and we both believe the building to be perfectly safe to search for answers and learn about ghost hunting. It’s just different. Strange. And unsettled. We miss Lucy and Paul, however far they are. I think they’re still around, but something is different. They’re holding back. Or being held back.

Curious about summoning (because we’re curious about controversial investigation ideas,) just today Callea asked a psychic friend for details on safe summoning. His texted reply, “If a normally active location is suddenly not active, something is holding the spirits back,” and that we have to make contact to get the older spirits back.

Tonight KJ McCormick will be joining us for the public hunt, as well as Clay Johnson, a Wyoming ghost hunter who now works for the hotel and his brother. After the hunt, we’re planning on addressing this spirit, and seeing if Lucy and Paul are only being quiet, or if there’s something holding them back.

As always, I’ll keep you posted.

July Madness

No, it’s not a basketball thing, just my forthcoming state of mind.

Quick note, the July 23rd Jerome Grand Hotel event has been postponed until further notice. I hope ticket sales resume an upward climb if it’s reposted. Jerome gave me my first experiences of what ghost hunting can really be like after my GHA experience. The Stanley Hotel picked up the slack nine months after and the rest, as they (cliche` people) say, is history. The best part of Jerome? While a moderately busy hotel, their ghosts are largely unbothered by tours and ghost hunts, and activity remains at a unique level of freshness in this day and age of the fad-like industry of ghost hunting.

Just got off a three day ghost hunting kick at the Stanley this weekend. July is a crazy month at the hotel (as is most of the summer), and three hunts back to back to back is a test of endurance, but a fun ride. Great guests and per usual, activity that leaves me scratching my head. That spirit box sometimes…

Starting Wednesday I begin training for yet again my summer position as a camp counselor at the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley. Because I’m borderline certifiable, I’m teaching at the camp again this year too. Apparently I don’t like sleep.

Letting you guys in on that facet of my life usually yields amusing results and I can’t help but reflect on last year, when hubub was abound as to whether I was still a part of the cast on GHI; many articles and blogs with their noses tuned to my Twitter reported on my not being with the team but instead being a camp counselor toasting marshmallows and telling stories rather than out making some of my own. I always got a kick out of reading these, putting it as if I’d hustled off to some monastery, the pressure of the show becoming too much.

GHI was everything I wanted it to be and more, the pressure was a joy, the television work, fun. And the camp is more of a nerd camp, classes-if-classes-were-cool, run around throwing shoes at eachother, and meeting some of the most awesome people of your life kind of camp rather than marshmallows and skits (which, mind you, held a firm monthly place in my childhood, but that’s another day).

Poor Mr. Staypuft.

I attended this camp, the Summer Enrichment Program starting in sixth grade, and completed two years of the Leadership camp that wraps the last two years of the program. Though only two weeks each year, the friendships were forever, and many tears were shed the end of each session. But it was the kind of camp that I knew I’d return to so long as life allowed it, and I’ve been back as a counselor for the last four years, teaching this year and the last.

I’m teaching an art class again this summer, not a “let’s learn to watercolor” class, but instead more of a “what is an artist and why does s/he make art?” also, a “if you want something in life, go out and fucking get it,” class – or, if there are children reading, a “be whoever you want to be” class.

I’m a broke ghost hunter working at the Stanley Hotel, trudging through his first three novels, attending classes, and lecturing across the United States. I don’t care who you want to grow up to be, passion is all you need. Food is secondary.

So that’s where I’ll be until late July. If you see tweets of shaving cream covered children or rambling sleep deprived visions of long legged beasties in the coming days, pay them little heed, they’re only echoes from the greatest place on earth.

If you have a child you think is gifted or know one who is who might love an experience like this for summer of 2012, more information can be found at http://www.unco.edu/cebs/sep/.

Also, despite being busy with two full time jobs during the camp, I will still be working most of the July ghost hunts, minus only one. So if you finally find yourself in front of the TV one night and think, I need to go on an epic ghost hunt and one of the most beautiful places on earth, this is your month!

Happy Fourth of July guys, I hope the sunsets are magical, the BBQs tasty, the beer cold, and the fireworks charming.