Tag Archives: strange

The Wendigo

Hello, darling!

I’m back, after a long hiatus, with a post on the infamous Wendigo. I’m sure you’ve all heard of them by now; they’re one of the most popular monsters on the T.V. show Supernatural, and they’re playing pretty big roles in both film and gaming lately. Anyone played Until Dawn? No? Don’t. I haven’t slept in days. But more on that later, if anyone wants to know how I felt about it.

Wendigo is a Native American… monster, for lack of a better word, that preys upon unsuspecting humans. Generally, there are a few criteria:

The forest. They’re most often found in the deep woods, but they aren’t limited to the Algonquian Eastern shore. There have been reports in MN, ND, SD, NM, you name it. There’s a theory I read about, somewhere in the comments of Reddit’s Search and Rescue guy (jury’s out on whether he was making it all up) that many of the world’s big, scary things have retreated to the deep, unexplored places with the advancement of human evolution. That the reason we’re all a little uncomfortable in the wild is that we know something’s out there, and that we aren’t apex out here.

Just something to think about.

Mimicry. If you’re camping with the fam and you hear someone calling you from a few hundred feet out, for the love of God don’t go out there. Mimicry is one of the Wendigo’s biggest tells.

It looks like Lupin. If it’s hairless, exceedingly tall, and looks like it crawled out of a sewer after the Ninja Turtles, you have your third clue. There’s hot debate over the actual appearance of the Wendigo, and no one can say for sure but the most widely accepted has long fingers and arms, with an almost stretched-out appearance. Some say they have huge fangs, eyes, and claws.

It’s trying to eat you. It eats humans. That’s what it does. it’s also been known to carry people off and keep them alive for days, chillin’ deep in caves where no one can hear you screaming.

The Wendigo’s origin story isn’t nailed down for certain, but the most popular (and my personal favorite) is the cannibalism theory. When a person gets desperate enough to eat someone else, from desperation or bath salts, what have you, they have a chance of possession by a Wendigo spirit. The more you eat, the hungrier you get, until you’re slowly driven insane (think Golem). Wendigo suffer form a deep, relentless, unceasing hunger, and as far as I can tell, there’s no cure. They’re cursed to find and chomp all the humans they can get their terrifying hands on. They’re the best hunters in the galaxy, and if you find one , you probably aren’t going to live. They’re also rumored to hibernate for months or years with no side effects but the munchies.

There’s no surefire way to kill a Wendigo; generally, they’re on that side of the fight, but you can always try the standard stuff: silver bullets/blades or my personal favorite, fire. One thing everyone agrees on: you must completely dismember it. Seth says they have weak eyesight, so if you can avoid letting it see you, you  might be okay. Report back if any of this works!

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Types of Ghosts

They jump out in the middle of the night and scare you, slam doors, or make your dog bark at nothing. Ghosts are often to blame for even the most mundane of circumstances bot how much do you really know about them? For instance, there are three common types of ghost. Yeah.

First up is the traditional Residual Haunting, in which the spirit/ghost/whatever you want to call it is trapped in a sort of time-warp. Basically it’s like a broken record. You’re hearing the same sound or seeing the same apparition every day. If the ghost ignores you, it probably doesn’t know you’re there. In a residual haunting, the spirit relives the same moment in time over and over, probably due to a shock, a death, or an emotional attachment to a place in particular.

A particularly famous case, the ghost of Anne Boleyn in the Tower of London, is a perfect example. Her headless ghost often walks the White Tower, among other occurrences. In 1817, she scared a sentry so badly that he had a heart attack and died. Another example of this type is the Gettysburg Battlefield in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. As the turning point in the Civil War, this area is rife with historical gravity. Plus it was one of the bloodiest battles in the war.

Things to look for: the apparition ignores you, phenomena occurring at the same time every day, apparitions walking through walls/closed doors, period or dated clothing

The second type is an Intelligent Haunting, in which the ghost knows you’re there. These are the kind most people think of when they hear the word “ghost.” It’s the “unfinished business” kind. Denise Villani says of the phenomena linked to an intelligent haunting:

“The spirit will usually manifest itself in physical ways like slamming, opening and unlocking doors and/or windows; weird sounds, disembodied voices, disturbance of electrical devices, cold chills and a strong presence like the feeling like you’re being watched or the hair on the back of your neck standing up, goosebumps, etc.

Sometimes these spirits will hide things, move stuff around, turn things on and off or do other annoying things like a child looking for attention. These are examples of ghosts trying to get noticed so it can communicate from the other side.”

It’s fairly common for hauntings of this type to be recently deceased loved ones, pets, or prior owners of property.

Another aspect of this type that might surprise you: not all of these ghosts are evil. These ghosts may pretend to be demonic (I’ll post about demonic hauntings later), but they aren’t, they’re just trying to freak you out. They can be helpful or scary, depending on the reason they’re haunting in the first place. They can be attached to a place, an object, or even a person. (My uncle was in a car accident years ago, and he’s haunted by the man who died T-boning him. His name is Steve, and he’s chill.)

Things to look for: objects disappearing/appearing in strange places, cold spots, someone’s-watching-me feelings, unexplained sounds, doors/windows opening/closing of their own volition, lights/TVs/radios/etc. turn on by themselves, apparitions, hearing disembodied voices and/or conversation, being touched

The third type of haunting is the Poltergeist. This term actually means “noisy spirit.” With this type of haunting comes breaking things, loud noises, lights turning on and off, tapping sounds, fires starting, flying objects, etc. It’s crazy in the house when there’s a poltergeist around!

Now, I bet this sounds a lot like the intelligent hauntings. Yes, it does. It really, really does, and that’s most of the problem.

The most recent theory behind poltergeists, however, has nothing to do with ghosts and more to do with angst. Most commonly, adolescent angst. In these cases, a member of the household (usually a teenager) is causing the phenomena without realizing it. This person is known as the “human agent.” The basis is that the agent is using a form of PK, or psychokinesis. It’s a mind-over-matter issue.

Most of the time, poltergeist-type hauntings begin out of the blue and recede slowly, much as the state of mind does. The Miami poltergeist is one of the most well-known cases.

Things to Look For: all of the intelligent haunting options, but these will generally be centered around one person. They might even be scratched or touched