One Man’s Parannoyances;
Psycho Babble or Righteous Wrath?
By: Brandon Blackburn
(The views expressed in this article may not be the views of 3P Paranormal)
(But he's right)
I may step on some toes here (boy do I hope so) but, continue if you can stand a little constructive criticism, it may do you some good. Or if you don’t like it, stick a pin in it and post it under the first portion of my subtitle. Over the years I’ve seen paranormal research soar to new heights via a more tolerant society and a rekindling of persons willing to speak out about their own unexplained disturbances, unique mental capabilities or just plain interest in the subject. This is great right? Well, it should be and maybe it is to some but unfortunately I believe the foundation of a course of study destined to become a science has been abandoned and here I will give you some reasons why;
Ghosthunting: One of the most detrimental facets of the new paranormal wave is the adoption of the term “ghosthunter” and more importantly it’s dominance or flat out replacement of legitimate or, to say the least, accurate terms such as parapsychology or paranormal investigating or psychical research. The earliest mention of the term “ghosthunter” as a working “professional” title that I can recall is from Hanz Holzer’s book of the same name. Keep in mind it is not my intention to single out the late Dr. Holzer but it is where I recall seeing the moniker for the first time. At the time, I paid no mind to it as, even as a youngster, I realized it was an intentional misnomer put in place simply as a marketing tool. Hanz was brilliant in many ways and one of the first true rebels on the Psy-Res (Psychical Research) scene. I think he had no intention and certainly not the foresight to see how the term would spread in epidemic proportions and during the late 1980’s through today (a full four decades after his usage of the label and guess what; for the same purpose he used it for, increased monetary gain. Anyway, whether my history of the term is correct, the motive of it is so, let’s turn our attention to why you and I are not “ghosthunters”
So it sounds cool and adds revenue, does it offer anything else towards the progress of the research? No. Not no but heck no. It’s a useless, misleading, inaccurate waste of letters. I implore you, whoever is reading this to use your beautiful, God crafted, super organ known as a brain to look at this objectively and I think you will agree. The only thing remotely ballpark about this inane name is the word “ghost” and last I checked, serious researchers still have that one under scrutiny. Oh and um, I don’t recall the last research investigation where I used Potter’s cloak of invisibility to act as a blind and slathered the soles of my boots with ectoplasm. The instance escapes me where I took a few links of tire chain for rattlin’, you know to simulate two phantoms in a scuffle over territory and then whipped out the ole disembodied wail call to toot a couple of times, never know, may bring’em in. I heard that Scoot Miller winged one up at the old asylum but wasn’t able to track it....dunno why. Now then, you see how enormously ridiculous this sounds? Researchers and investigators research and investigate, they do not hunt anything in any way shape or form. Leave hunting to hunters. Einstein wasn’t a science fisherman, nor was Beethoven a jingle stalker. You know, I would even accept (reluctantly) something like ghost studier or observer but hunter....no thank you. Besides, any of you who have spent as much time in the field (no pun intended) as I have, you already know that when the bumps and knocks and crashes and voices start coming from everywhere and nowhere well, you realize that if any hunting is going on, you’re not the one doing it. Don’t get me wrong, there are “ghost hunters” out there for sure. They currently come in two flavors. First is the “sold out, don’t care about the research anymore but I need a check so I’ll just regurgitate some sh*t I heard somewhere else or better yet just make some new sh*t up and make it sound all scientificy while the camera swirls wildly and out of focus and creepy intense music plays” type ghosthunter. Next is the “Just had a sixer of Hiney so my courage is up, want to impress some chick, let’s hit a haunted house with a Ouija board, hope she doesn’t notice the urine streak down my pant leg if something really happens,...oh and what’s paranormal research?” type ghosthunter. Guess what? They can have it, because I am a paranormal investigator, a supernatural sleuth, an anomaly agent, a disturbance detective and believe it not, a reasonably smart fellow that just wants to maintain a little integrity within my field of study. But, for obvious reasons listed above, that one seemingly trivial word is making that very difficult.
One Man’s Parannoyances;
Psycho Babble or Righteous Wrath?
By: Brandon Blackburn
Let’s start this installment with a investigation that took place a few years back since it is both relevant to the core issue to be discussed and may be of assistance to future investigation by serious researchers. There are, as with any instance of this nature, a great many details that could be recounted but the lesson can be narrowed down to a few specifics as such; Claims of activity included an upstairs (storage attic) light anomaly occasionally but indeed recently observed. I made this particular report my priority to investigate, partly because I look for any reason I can to be alone in the darkness in an alleged haunted house and partly because the most recent claim came from children and I have a very protective nature about me despite a sometimes abrasive and blunt outer shell. Almost two hours had passed in the opaque air of the attic and I began to believe that the children may have simply seen something other than what they thought they had, after all, it happens....even to adult paranormal researchers. But then, it happened. Off to my left. A brilliant and fleeting ball of blue light had indeed manifest and was then gone before I could get a fix on it. Okay, the tale was just as they had said....time to put the brain to work. After what seemed like an eternity (maybe 30 mins.) boom, there it was again. Once more I could get no fix on the location, it was just to sudden. However, I did have something to work with. The second appearance had given me a much more narrow field to focus on because it had shown itself in quite literally the same place. I had also heard a small pop or click milliseconds before the flash and immediately sent my recall in action and became satisfied that there had been the same sound the first time. *My senses became even more heightened as I waited and scanned the floor area through the viewfinder of my IR camera. I had already deduced the origin of the phenomena and it was more of threat than I could’ve foreseen before beginning the investigation. I just needed proof. With my senses in overdrive and the potential answer already in hand it seemed take even longer this go round. However, eventually, I heard a faint click and then there it was and caught on video this time,...the gorgeous though terrible vibrant blue mini explosion of an arcing electrical wire. Needless to say in an old, dusty, cram packed attic, this was a catastrophe waiting to happen. Now what’s the negative side of this? Afterall, I did potentially save a house by skillfully debunking a claim, right....? WRONG!
Debunking: Here is a little history lesson for you. Around about 1820 Edward Buncombe, extensive land owner and colonel of the Continental Army and the 5th Regiment of what was then the province of North Carolina, had a representative speak during a House debate on behalf of his namesake county (Buncombe County). Unfortunately the man named Felix Walker spoke so poorly that it was laughable and it was this instance that a new word surfaced meaning; Nonsense, hogwash, insincerity, baloney, etc.
That word? Bunkum. A thinly veiled mocking of “Buncombe” was shortly thereafter shortened to bunk. What does this all mean...my head is a swirl of confusion now. I mean all those famous groups say it all the time so it must be right, you know, ‘cause they’re on TV. Easy sport, let me explain things for you. If you model yourself after one these television programs exploring the paranormal, you are being detrimental to legitimate research and you will fail. If you get lucky, and get on television, do us all a favor and show how intelligent and freethinking real paranormal researchers are. Because if you don’t, I will find you and most likely on a public forum, I will intellectually destroy you by exposing the propaganda driven half truths that the majority of today’s “ghosthunters” dish out as fact in order to seem knowledgeable of the field and to establish some sort of reputation. Essentially, (now pay attention)...... I will DEBUNK you and your alleged research. Now then, do you see how the word debunk works and how there are only a few instances here and there where a researcher actually debunks something.
What if I had told my client that I had debunked the claim of the light anomaly in the attic? Why, he/she may have gotten angry and with good reason. Telling someone that you have debunked their claim is the same as calling them a liar. Don’t believe me. I don’t care but just in case you do care, about this field of research, just look the word up. Meanwhile, I’m going to continue to establish alternative explanations via observation skills, data collection/comparison and deductive reasoning. The same way any good detective or investigator of any other sort or science does. Ciao.