Haunted By A Smile – Jim Harold’s Campfire 644

A smiling woman terrifies a young man, a photographer recounts a chilling story of a picture taken for a stranger and much more on this edition of Jim Harold’s Campfire!

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Jim Harold (00:00:00):

Terrifying tales on this week’s Campfire.

Announcer (00:00:18):

Welcome to our gathering Tonight. Here we share stories of ordinary people who have experienced extraordinary things. Sit back, relax, and warm yourself by Jim Harold’s Campfire.

Jim Harold (00:00:29):

Welcome to the Campfire. I am Jim Harold, and so glad to be here. And you are in the right place if you like spooky stories. And we certainly, as I said at the beginning, there have some terrifying tales this week. Last week, by the way, happy Valentine’s Day everybody if you’re listening to this on Valentine’s Day. But last week we actually released our Valentine’s Show. I thought that would work out better because of the timing. So if you’re in a Valentine’s mood, go back and listen to last week. And if you’re in a mood to listen to some super spooky stories, listen to this week’s show and we appreciate it. And so many people have commented they love when we do those recap shows, and we get to do those three, four times a year, and that’s about it. But we have an archive of thousands of Campfire stories you cannot access on the free feeds.


And the way you access that is through our Plus Club. You can go to JimHaroldplus.com and click on the banner and get all of the details. We have a great solution for those of you who listen specifically in Apple Podcast and we have a great solution. If you prefer to listen in another app or you’re an Android person. So we really do have something for everybody. You can get all the details over at Jim Harold plus.com. We started the Plus Club in 2012, and I’m proud to say we’ve never once raised our prices. It really is what makes what we do possible, of course, along with our sponsors, but we need all of that support because believe it or not, this is not a cheap undertaking for server space and all the different costs that go along with it. It helps us and it helps you because you get to hear thousands of Campfire stories that you can on those free feeds. Plus there’s a lot more exclusive content. But let’s get to today’s content. And here it is on Jim Harold’s Campfire. Enjoy. 

Next up on the Campfire is Mike from Illinois. His brother Rob told him about the show. Rob, thank you. And stay spooky and see, do what Rob did. Be like, Rob, so you can hear great stories like the one Mike is going to share with us, the story of the smiling woman. Mike, welcome to the show. Tell us what happened.

Michael (IL) (00:02:42):

Hey Jim, thanks for having me on. Back in 1991, I was with my buddy Pete, and we were at a neighborhood next door to our neighborhood in Oak Park, Illinois, and we were just hanging out on the front lawn talking like what eighth graders do. And we got into telling Ghost stories and the girls got into telling us a story about a week before they were playing with a Ouija board in the house. And they started talking to this woman. And as they’re going on talking about this woman, I just start to get this weird feeling, standing at the front lawn and there by the stairs that’s leading to the house. And you have this front door, and at the top of that front door is this little window. And inside that window you can see the inside staircase leading up to the second floor.


So I just get this weird feeling of my attention being drawn to these stairs and I can’t see nothing there, but I just get this weird feeling that somebody is standing there staring at me and the girls are still talking. And I must’ve interrupted them with a question. And I asked them, when you were talking to this woman, did you ask her what she looked like? And the girl said, yes. So again, I can’t see her. I just had this weird feeling that somebody’s standing there and I could just picture her. And I asked if she had long black hair and they said yes. So then I asked if she had pale white skin and they didn’t answer me. And the reason why is because I was still looking at the stairs when I was talking to ’em. I wasn’t even addressing them with my sight.


And that kind of freaked them out. So I looked at them and they wondered what was going on. And I’m like, listen, I’m not trying to freak you out. I can’t see anybody on your stairs, but I could picture a woman standing there staring at me. And yeah, yeah. And they got all creeped out. And so was I, still even telling the story. It makes me weird. So my intention was not to scare the girls. So we just started telling jokes for about an hour and then it was going to get dark soon. So me and Pete decided that we were going to start going home. And Oak Park, Illinois runs on a grid system. So all the streets run north south east west. And we start walking west and we’re going, and I start to get that weird feeling again. And I turn around and I see somebody about a block down just walking.


So I don’t say nothing to Pete. We just keep walking and we get to Oak Park Avenue. And Oak Park Avenue is a busy street. So we had to wait for traffic to clear across. So I’m standing there at the corner waiting, and Pete comes up on my right and he’s doing the same. And finally, the person that was about a block back catches up with us and they come up on my left, but they stand about one step ahead of me so I can only see their back and the right side of them. And I got my hands in my pockets, and I’m kind of swaying back and forth from my heel to my tippy toes, just like watching traffic. And then I look at this person and they have a black hood on, and then I notice long black hair coming out of the front of the hood.


And then I stop my swaying and I just kind of stare at the hair. And then it hits me what I’m looking at right when it hits me. They turn their heads very fast and they just have this look of sheer just horrific evil smile at me. Just a smile. 

Jim Harold:

You gave me the chills, Mike. You gave me the chills. 

Michael (IL):

I get the chills still talking about it. It traumatized me. It was a horrible smile. It was a look, like I know that you know kind of feel. And the first thing I did was look at the eyes and they were white, but there was no, to them, it was just black pupils. And the skin was pale, just like I imagined on the stairs. And she was smiling. I say she, because it resembled a woman more than anything. And the smile, the cheeks were so wide out the skin, the pale skin was kind of cracking, almost like it was peeling off. And then I noticed some rotted teeth.

Jim Harold (00:06:18):

Oh man.

Michael (IL) (00:06:18):

And I don’t remember anything after that. From what Pete tells me, he didn’t see any of this. He’s watching traffic. Pete starts to cross the street after the traffic clears, I guess this person or whatever it was also went. And Pete tells me he turned around and saw me still standing there in my hands, in my pockets, looking where that person was standing. So next thing I remember, Pete shaking me out of it, and he’s wondering what’s going on with me? So in my words, I’m shaking like I am right now telling the story. And by the time I get out the story to him, and he’s starting to really kind of understand what I’m saying to him, I show him that person there, and I’m pointing, and whatever it was, it’s just so far down from our eyesight, just faded off into the ether and never saw or heard anything from her again.

Jim Harold (00:07:02):

So when the girls were doing the Ouija board, you were looking over at these stairs and you could picture this person, you didn’t actually see ’em, but in your mind’s eye, you could picture them standing there and then whatever it was showed up on your walk back home.

Michael (IL) (00:07:17):

Yeah, it was more so a feeling. First, something just drew my eyes to the stairs. And with my eyes, I was not seeing it. But in my mind, I was seeing the same woman standing there looking at me, and it was just the craziest feeling. And then when they didn’t answer my second question and I looked at them and then I looked back, the feeling was gone, didn’t see her, nothing. And then we actually all kind of forgot about it. It was an hour later when we decided to go home. We were telling jokes. I even forgot about it. And then when we started walking, the feeling came back when I saw the person. But it wasn’t strong. And I’ve had those kinds of feelings before, but never, I mean, this was on steroids and it was only really when I was a kid. I don’t really get it anymore. But it was so intense. And when I got the feeling again when she was walking behind, and it was not as strong. So I didn’t really pay attention too much to it.

Jim Harold (00:08:06):

Wow. So really – 

Michael (IL) (00:08:10):

It sounds crazy saying that,

Jim Harold (00:08:11):

No, I believe it. Believe me. We’ve had some wild stories here. So it’s not anything, I mean, it’s a unique story, but we’ve heard wild stories here and I fully believe it. What do you think it was?

Michael (IL) (00:08:26):

I have no idea. I mean, if it was a human, I don’t know what I saw, but I know what I saw. You know what I mean? It wasn’t normal. It was something I’ve never ever seen since. It traumatized me. I mean, I’ve only had two things in my life that traumatized me, and that’s one of ’em. I mean, it is burnt into my mind. So when I’m in the dark, I see that face. It’s haunting. It really is.

Jim Harold (00:08:51):

Yikes, Yikes, Yikes, Yikes, Yikes. And when you said its pupils, was the whole eyeball black or just the pupils?

Michael (IL) (00:08:58):

No, no, no, just the pupils. So I mean, I don’t know if she was on drugs, I don’t know. But there was no color. I have green eyes. There was no color. It was just all black. And then he had the white. Yeah.

Jim Harold (00:09:12):

Or it was some kind of evil entity, possibly.

Michael (IL) (00:09:15):

Possibly. I know I don’t discount anything at this point.

Jim Harold (00:09:19):

Well, Mike, you left us with something to think about. Who knows what that was, but let’s put it this way. I hope you don’t see it again. And I know I don’t want to see it.

Michael (IL) (00:09:29):

Trust me, when I get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I don’t turn on the lights cause I don’t want to get up. And that picture, her face is in my head a lot.

Jim Harold (00:09:38):

Well, I know you have more stories. You’re more than welcome to come on again and tell those. And Rob, thank you for telling Mike about the shows we appreciate and we hope everybody will be like Rob and tell their friends and family about the show. And Mike, thank you for taking time to tell us this great story and stay spooky.

Michael (IL) (00:09:55):

Thanks Jim. Stay spooky.

Jim Harold (00:09:57):

Next up on the program is Angie from Maryland and we’re so glad to speak with her. And she has a story about her and her best friend and some strangeness that ensued. Angie, welcome to the show. Thank you for joining us. Tell us what happened.

Angie (MD) (00:10:13):

Okay, thank you so much. Alright, so this is in upstate New York. It’s around Albany. So everything is very, very old, very haunted, very creepy. It’s like one of the oldest places in America. So creepiness was not unfamiliar to us, I guess. So this is at her house. It’s an old farmhouse, it’s on top of a mountain. It was always very, very dark there, no matter, even if it was light out, all the lights were on in the house. It was always darker than anywhere I had ever seen. But it was in the back woods on a mountain, so sure, sure, sure it’s going to be dark. But there were other things too. People that had never had an experience before would have an experience there. And it was always like this one half of the house was creepy, the air was heavier if you’ve ever felt something like that.


And then as soon as you entered the living room, the air was lighter and everything was fine and sort of brighter in a way. So it was mostly just creepy feelings. Sometimes we’d be sitting around the kitchen table and we’d be doing arts and crafts with our sister and it would just start to feel different and we’d kind of acknowledge it and sometimes we’d talk about it, sometimes we wouldn’t. It felt like if we talked about it, it would make it worse. So let’s see, I chatted with my mom about it a little bit because of course she’d seen the house before and she said the kitchen always seemed really creepy there. It was. Sometimes it would seem big and sometimes it would seem small. You knew it was big, but sometimes it seemed like the size of our bathroom and sometimes it seemed huge and opened up.


It’s strange, sort of outside of time and space. So this one night, this is where the big most notable thing happened is we were getting ready for bed. We were around 18 or 19, so this is 15 years ago or so. So we were still chatting a little and the room was dark, everything we had shut off all the lights and we were laying down and the door was open into the kitchen a little bit. So we saw this flickering light and it was sort of a natural light. It looked kind of like the light of a candle. So I looked at her and I was like, what’s that? And she was like, I dunno, I dunno. I don’t want to know, sort of. So I figured maybe the power went out and her mom was walking around with a candle to get everything settled and we didn’t hear any footsteps or anything.


It was silent, completely silent. So the way that it was moving around was the creepiest. To me. It’s like it wasn’t floating around how people describe orbs, like a bubble. It was like somebody was holding it and walking around, but we didn’t see anything. Just the light and the light seemed like it was kind of breathing. If you step with a candle, it brightens up and then dims down a little bit. So we’re watching this and we’re both completely silent and it’s sort of walking around, it’s investigating or something, it’s, it takes a few strides and then it stops maybe sort of to look around or something and takes a few strides and stops and then it walks around the kitchen table in this way that’s almost like a person, but not like a person, just sort of almost natural mimicking natural movements of a human. And we watched it for a while. It felt like an eternity, but it probably went on for about five minutes. And the dogs are in her sister’s room next door and they’re barking incessantly, and eventually her sister gets up, lets the dogs out, and then closes her door again and the dogs run into the room in front of us, sort of in a protective way. So we’re all watching this light. And nothing affected the movement of this light, it was just doing its own thing. So

Jim Harold (00:13:59):

It was a walking light, basically like a walking light,

Angie (MD) (00:14:03):

Like a walking light. But it was about the size maybe of, I dunno, maybe about five inches in diameter or something. Not huge, but it was at the height maybe as if somebody had it in their hands and they were walking around.

Jim Harold (00:14:21):


Angie (MD) (00:14:23):

Yeah. So then we’re all looking at it. The dogs are just silent, staring at it, and eventually it stops and she goes over and she turns on the light. And we kind of talked about what this could be, but it didn’t feel like it was a ghost or a spirit or a demon or anything because we’ve all gotten creepy feelings in houses before and you can feel like maybe it’s benevolent, maybe it’s malevolent, but it didn’t feel like that I felt before. For a while I thought maybe it was like a fairy or something of the equivalent or something, but I don’t think so. And I’m not sure. But there was also, this is kind of a silly side note, but it’s rumored that a witch used to live there 200, 300 years ago, but this is the backwood, so it could have just been a single woman or something living there.


But what’s also kind of notable is that one of our ex-boyfriends years ago, there were two barns out back, and when you walk to this one barn from the house to the barn, it was always the creepiest, creepiest feeling like you were waiting for something to happen, right? Well, he came in white as a sheet one day and said that he saw a woman by the woods line trying to lure him into the woods. I asked if she knew if she had a description of the woman or anything. She just doesn’t remember because it was so long ago. But I guess it could have something to do with it. But other than that, I have no idea what it could have been.

Jim Harold (00:15:52):

But you have fascination in these topics, nevertheless. It didn’t scare you away or anything like that.

Angie (MD) (00:16:00):

It was definitely scary. I don’t think anyone really was comfortable being there, but I’m fascinated in these topics, of course. But yeah, I guess I was interested to know if you’ve ever heard of anything like that.

Jim Harold (00:16:11):

I’ve seen people talk about a floating orb and not just the ones you take. You see people take pictures and there’s lens fla and things, and they say there’s orbs, but people have said there’ve actually been orbs floating in midair. One was going down the sidewalk and somebody was following it. But you said in your email, this was not really like an orb per se, right?

Angie (MD) (00:16:36):

Right, exactly. Yeah, because it wasn’t, it didn’t maintain a perfect shape, I guess. Like I said, it breathed kind of, it got a little brighter, got a little dimmer, got a little brighter, got a little dimmer. That’s why I got the feeling that someone was walking around with a candle like bare fire. That’s the way that it looked. Non artificial light or anything like that. Just what fire naturally would do if you have it in air.

Jim Harold (00:17:05):

Do you ever ever thought that maybe it was like a partial replay, like it was a replay in the past?

Angie (MD) (00:17:12):

Yeah, it could be. Maybe because it was such something so mundane and trivial of walking around the kitchen maybe looking for something.

Jim Harold (00:17:21):

Yeah, yeah, could be. I don’t know. I’m just trying to, because it was an older home. I’m just trying to think of explanations and that is one. Possibly it could have been a spirit too. I think that’s a sentient spirit, I guess. Because I think both things exist. I think you have the kind of sentient, interactive hauntings, if you will, or ghosts or spirits. And then you have, I do think there are times when you see replays or maybe part of replay. So that was just another idea.

Angie (MD) (00:17:52):

Yeah. Yeah, that’s not a bad idea. I mean, because I have no idea what else it could have been and we’ll never know. But I think that that’s definitely a good thought.

Jim Harold (00:17:59):

Well, that’s the thing about this stuff, Angie. I don’t know that I’ve ever given anybody an answer, but at least we talk about it, share our experiences and come up with some theories and have some fun with it. Angie, thank you so much for being a part of the show tonight. And you stay spooky.

Angie (MD) (00:18:16):

Thanks. You too. Take Care. 

Jim Harold (00:18:18):

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Announcer (00:21:11):

If you love the Campfire, be sure to check out the Paranormal Podcast where every week Jim interviews experts and authors about strange mysteries. Find it for free wherever you listen to this podcast. Tune in to the Paranormal Podcast today. Now we return to Jim Harold’s Campfire.

Jim Harold (00:21:26):

Brynna is on the line from South Carolina and she has, well, I definitely think this is in head scratcher territory and looking forward to hearing this story. Brynna, welcome to the show. Thank you for joining us and tell us what happened. This is a doozy.

Brynna (SC) (00:21:45):

Thank you, Jim. In 2007, I was living in Elgin, Illinois. I had a house there and I was commuting to work in the city of Chicago, which is about 40 miles to the southeast of Elgin. It was a long hard commute, but sometimes on my days off, I would go down to the city to take art photography, kind of the fancy black and white stuff that I was selling on the side. I went down there on July 3rd on 2007, and I was roaming the city, taking pictures here and there, and I ended up on the Dearborn Street Bridge. That bridge is, it runs north south, but it crosses the Chicago river running east west. I was shooting east, my camera was pointed east basically toward Lake Michigan. I was leaned over the rail and I was real focused on my photography when I heard a voice very close to me, say, take my picture. And I looked over and there was a guy standing a foot away from me. I never saw him approach. I didn’t hear him come at all. So I turned and I looked at him and his suggestion, take my picture. I thought he was joking. I’m working, clearly serious, got the big camera out and everything. So I laughed like, okay, yeah, I take my picture. So I went back to taking pictures and he leaned in closer and he said, take my picture.


So I turned and I looked at him, like seriously, what does he really want? And I got my first full view of him, a normal looking man in his thirties. He was wearing a Chicago sports jersey and blue jeans. One odd thing, he had what looked like a wooden club or a baseball bat in his hand. I wasn’t afraid. He didn’t seem like the kind of person that was going to hit me on the head with a club. I didn’t know what he was doing, but I kind of raised my camera and I took a quick shot of him and I said, there you go. And I went back, I turned and I went back to looking at the river and he said it again, take my picture. So I turned completely to face him, and that’s when I realized two things he really wanted his picture taken, and also that he was walking with three other people.


There was a teenage girl, there was a teenage boy, there was a man in his late twenties, and this guy who was in his thirties or so, I’ll tell you, I don’t want to disparage them at all. I will say that there was something about the group that made my antenna go up. Not that I was, again, I wasn’t in danger, but there was something strange. They were all standing perfectly still. They were all looking at me like they were a part of this. Somehow you might see people hang around a three card Monte table that were really involved in this conversation, their friend. So I say to the guy, okay, I’m going to take your picture. Let’s make it good. And I say, the sun is coming from this angle. I want you to turn around and I want you to lean up against the railing, the Dearborn Street Bridge, and I’m going to shoot you there.


The guy hopped up on the railing, which is actually kind of dangerous, and he assumed this really weird pose, almost royal, like a royal pose, and he held the club as if a king holding a scepter, posing for an oil painting. So as I’m in there taking pictures of the guy, like, okay, I realized this is a really good street portrait. This is a very interesting man, it’s an interesting, why is he carrying a club, that kind of thing. I take his picture from my mini pictures and I stop and I go, okay, thank you. Thanks for letting me take your picture. And he smiled and he nodded at me, and then his friends looked over and they nodded once and they all walked away. That’s kind of the end of that part of the story.

Jim Harold (00:25:59):

Which is bizarre in and of, it’s not supernatural. At least that part’s not. But I got to say that’s just weird.

Brynna (SC) (00:26:05):

But anyway,. I didn’t know what the game was. So like all photographers, I go back to my studio and I take out the memory card from my camera and I put it into my computer and I start looking at it on the big screen, really looking at all the photos. I’m seeing buildings in the river, and I come to this series with the guy with the stick. There he is. I see chains on his neck and he is got some stuff on his face, scars on his face, and then I look at the club, Jim, there’s that phrase, perhaps even a cliche like my blood ran cold or my goose pimples, whatever they’re called, this feeling like, oh my God. Because I looked at the club, I realized, one, it wasn’t a club, it was a section of a tree branch that had been stripped of its bark. It had been hand carved at the top of it was a single head along the lines of a totem pole that was never finished.


The reason I got so frightened was I recognized it that totem, I had carved in a woodcarving class when I was 12 years old. 

Jim Harold: 

Oh my Lord. 

Brynna (SC):

In 1976 in Rhode Island. I recognized it instantly too because I had recently seen it. A few months prior. My mother had sent me a box of toys from my childhood, and in that she had included this totem that I’d begun carving; it didn’t bring back a lot of good memories. The totem in particular, when I was working on it, I had an accident, which I’ve never, I’ll say I’ve never been quite able to understand where I was carving it, and the knife slipped and I actually cut off the end of my left ring finger. The doctors were able to reattach it, and I was young and I still have that part of my hand, but it got blood on the totem. I lost all enthusiasm for that project and woodworking in general. But when I got this box of toys, I didn’t want ’em. They didn’t bring back good memories for me. And I went out to the driveway of the house we’re living in, opened up the lid of the garbage and I threw it in, slammed the lid shut and said aloud, only bad memories.


That totem that I carved when that was happening was a particularly bad time in my childhood. I was experiencing a lot of pain and a lot of abuse, and I didn’t want to remember any of it at all. I didn’t know what to think that day. Looking at my monitor, looking at the photographs, I don’t know what really to think about it. Now, if I had to offer a moral to the story first, I think it’s impossible. It’s not a matter of a coincidence, it’s just simply impossible. All the elaborate, if you think about a human being had put this all together, that human being would’ve had to have been standing over my shoulder, watching me throw it away and then set up this elaborate thing that they would find me downtown and confront me and make me take a picture for proof. None of that makes any sense. I think for me, I will say it completely altered the way that I think about reality. If that’s possible, Jim, if that’s possible, if something that you throw in the trash purposefully to rid yourself or try to rid yourselves of memories that you don’t want to think about anyway, if that pops up again in the most unlikely way after you’ve sought to destroy it. There was something about it that was paranormal.

Jim Harold (00:30:19):

Oh yeah. Wow. Yeah. And it was like that totem was imbued with negative energy and that negative energy wanted to come find you. It sounds like to me,

Brynna (SC) (00:30:35):

If we had more time, I’d talk about that negative energy. But one thing that’s interesting in the picture, you can see the guys holding, you can actually see that the face is still tinged red with his blood, and I remember making every cut in that totem. I remember it clearly, and I am still shaken by it. Truly, Jim, I really am. There’s no way for me to process it. On your show, you’ve talked about a lot of things. I believe the term is JOTT.

Jim Harold (00:31:07):

Yes. I was thinking of the same thing where things end up at odd places.

Brynna (SC) (00:31:12):

I would look to get your perspective on it. Another idea that you’ve talked about is this idea that a human being can make changes in reality, such they can make something happen or see something maybe even other people can, a tulpa yes, but this is so far down the road of a tulpa, and let me just say something about this group of people. I don’t know if they were human beings. I really don’t. If they were human beings, they sure did look like such an unlikely crew, and their behavior was so strange, but I got a picture of it. That event actually did happen, and I really don’t know what to think.

Jim Harold (00:31:59):

And you have the picture, right? It’s displayed, right?

Brynna (SC) (00:32:03):

Oh yeah. Absolutely. Absolutely. I don’t know if you can see, but it’s actually on the monitor back there on my computer. I brought it up. I have it printed and hanging on another part of the house. I think for me, the event made me realize that I had to confront what I had experienced as a child, the reasons for it, and there’s no running from the past. Sometimes I think the powers that be force us back to resolve those issues.

Jim Harold (00:32:33):

Wow, that’s amazing. Now you said you’d tell us more about the energy. Go ahead and if you want to take a few minutes and tell us your thoughts on that energy.

Brynna (SC) (00:32:45):

When I was young, I experienced a few things that at the time, because you’re young and you experienced them alone, you have no frame of context. There were events that I now look back and say, those were paranormal. They set up a long string of them through my childhood and being a teenager, and again, the common debunking of all of this is I’m crazy. I met a partner and we got married and we lived in that house in Elgin. One of the things we first connected on was that she too had experienced paranormal things throughout her life and in that house we encountered an entity that was very strong, that had the ability to move furniture, throw objects, even yell at us from time to time. When I talk about the energy imbued into that totem, I don’t know, it seems like it’s one and the same. Something throughout my life, fully cognizant of the entire story, would put that together for a reason. I will say about the house and the thing that was in it, it wasn’t malevolent. We always kept the impression that it was a female and that it was just simply, we used to always call it the dead invisible stranger that lived in our house. I feel that way. I feel that whatever that brought that totem back was not just, this wasn’t just a one time thing. This is a part of a long-term relationship with something.

Jim Harold (00:34:29):

One thing I want to point out, you were talking about JOTT and your story reminds me a little bit of this story, although that story didn’t really have a sinister piece to it. You may have heard it on the show. It was a man and he was traveling for business in somewhere, and I can’t remember what the cities were, how far away, but it was someplace that you would either have to drive or fly to. It wasn’t like a suburb. It was like halfway across the country is my recollection, or hundreds of miles at least. And he was in this other city traveling on business, and he had occasion to throw something in a trash can. And sometimes when you throw something into a trash can, you see the contents. And there on the top of the contents was his school elementary picture from when he was back in the day, I don’t even know if they do it anymore, but back in the day, they used to bring in the photographers and they’d have the very seventies and eighties backgrounds and that whole thing. Well, they did that. He got his picture in fifth or sixth grade or fourth grade, I don’t know what it was. And literally that picture was sitting on top of the contents of the garbage can, and he has no idea of the significance of it.

Brynna (SC) (00:35:49):

I’ll say that when I was in college, I remember a professor talking about a notion that, for example, you take a colored sugar cube and you throw it in a glass of water, the sugar molecules dissolve into the water and they float freely and through molecular motion, they move about. There it is, this question, how long would it take for those molecules to come back together in exactly the same order and position and recreate that colored sugar cube? And the answer is, it would take more time than the universe has that it’s that impossible. I feel that way when I hear stories like that. That’s just not possible and without some kind of intentional manipulation or action that doesn’t make sense.

Jim Harold (00:36:43):

And that’s the one thing, Brynna, that I think I’ve learned this show will soon be celebrating. What is it now, its 15th anniversary, and I don’t have any answers, but I have come to one conclusion. The world is a far stranger place than we give it credit for, and a lot of things don’t make sense, but they still happen. 

Brynna (SC):

Yes, sir. They still have. Yes.

Jim Harold:

Brynna, thank you so much for sharing this. This has got to be a Campfire classic, and I’ll be so interested to see what our audience says and if anybody’s experienced something similar. Thank you.

Brynna (SC) (00:37:18):

I appreciate it. Thank you. Bye, Jim.

Jim Harold (00:37:21):

Next up on the Campfire is Heather. Now we talk about near death experiences, these situations where people literally die and then they float above their body and they see their body, which I think is one of the most fascinating parts of near death experiences. Now, Heather didn’t have a near death experience, but she had a strange experience during a medical procedure. She’s going to tell us about Heather, welcome to the show. Thanks for listening, and tell us what happened.

Heather (WI) (00:37:51):

Hi. So I went in for a colonoscopy, and when you go in for those, they don’t sedate you completely. They just kind of,

Jim Harold (00:38:02):

It’s like a twilight.

Heather (WI) (00:38:04):

Yeah, exactly. So I was in there, I fell asleep, and all of a sudden I found myself sort of waking up, but I wasn’t on the table anymore. I was up above my body and I could see the three people in the room that were attending to me. And the craziest part was I could see what I believe was their souls above their bodies, and they were kind of grouped together. And I just had this overwhelming feeling that they were there to help me and we were all sort of working together. It was sort of a weird telepathic information that I was getting from them, but it was so moving and so touching. I sobbed when I woke up for good, it was during Covid, so they had face masks on you. I think the nurse had to change my face mask three times because I just kept soaking them. And even now, every time I think about it, I get tears because it was just the most pure loving experience I think I’ve ever had.

Jim Harold (00:39:28):

How neat is that? Now the thing is, is that Mr. Rogers had a thing when he was with us, and I think this was around the time of 9/11, they were talking about, well, how do you explain this to kids and things? I said, look for the helpers. Look for the helpers. And definitely medical people are the helpers. And that’s a beautiful thing. You were able to see into their souls and see that caring and helping nature.

Heather (WI) (00:39:55):

It was just like there was three balls of light, kind of just huddled above the group of them and what I believe was their soul or some sort of energy from them. But I could tell it was them.

Jim Harold (00:40:09):

Right, and the thing is, the out of body experiences os have always fascinated me. In fact, my wife Dar tells of a story when she was very young. I figure seven or eight years old, I’m thinking, I’m not exactly sure, but she had a high fever and she floated out of her body and she saw her body from, she was probably where the ceiling was, and she was looking down on herself. And that is something that has always fascinated me because in these cases, many of them, people say, oh, they’re hallucinating or wherever. But then they are actually these people who float, whether it’s an NDE or these other instances, they’re able to communicate things that they couldn’t possibly know. Thus, it can’t necessarily always be chalked down to, oh, you had a hallucination,

Heather (WI) (00:41:00):

Right? Yeah. You see things that actually happened and the people who were there confirmed it happened. So yeah,

Jim Harold (00:41:06):

Right. There’s one I tell all the time near death experience. And anyhow, basically the near death experience was afterwards, the gentleman who had the near death experience said, well, the surgeon was flapping his wings like a chicken. And that sounds ridiculous, but it turned out that the surgeon had a habit to maintain sterility of the instruments and so forth. He would point with his elbows, give me this, give me that. So it made him look like he was flapping his arms like a chicken. Yep. Yeah. So, oh, that’s so cool. I mean, I don’t know your belief system before or after, but that kind of inforce a belief or establish a belief in a soul and all those other things.

Heather (WI) (00:41:55):

Yeah, it’s strengthened it. I’ve always believed higher power and things like that, but it really brought it to life for me and could see that even though day-to-day, we don’t see that those things are there, that they’re actually there.

Jim Harold (00:42:15):

Yeah. That’s very cool indeed. Well, Heather, I know you have a lot more stories. I hope you’ll come back on the show to share those. And I think it’s a very nice story, very reaffirming story, and we should mention it. Everybody go get your colonoscopy. It’s so important and know it’s not the most super pleasant thing and it’s kind of whatever. It’s not like, but it’s very, very important that we all do that it. So if you’re listening out there and you’re stalling, go get your colonoscopy.

Heather (WI) (00:42:47):

Not as bad as you think.

Jim Harold (00:42:48):

That’s right. Heather, thank you for being a part of the Campfire today and stay spooky.

Heather (WI) (00:42:53):

Alright, thank you

Jim Harold (00:42:54):

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Announcer (00:45:56):

Want the entire Campfire archive going back to 2009 plus much more? Get in on Jim’s Plus Club at jimharoldplus.com. Now back to another great story.

Jim Harold (00:46:06):

Well next up on the show is Jessica from Utah. She’s been in the programs before. We’re so glad to have back return callers in general, and Jessica specifically, and she has kind of a frightening story. Her and her husband, before they were married, they were dating, they watched a horror movie and strangeness ensued. Jessica, welcome to the show and tell us what happened with this spooky movie.

Jessica (UT) (00:46:32):

Hi, thanks for having me back. Yes, it was back when we were dating. My husband was still trying to impress me. So it was one of the few times we watched a horror movie together and we were watching one of my favorite horror movies, which was the Exorcism of Emily Rose. Now, I don’t know how familiar your viewers are with this movie, but there’s a very pivotal scene where the father is trying to get the demon’s name because in the lore, if you have the demon’s name, you have power over the demon.


And so he’s saying, tell me your name, and it’s the barn scene. And she’s telling him, I’m not one demon. I am Judas who betrayed his master, and I am Nero who burned Rome to the ground and I’m Hitler and all these terrible people. And then she concludes her speech by saying, and I am Lucifer himself. And at that moment, this huge explosion, boom, took the apartment, it took the huge bay window that we had and it sounded like we were right next to a freeway, Jim. And it sounded like a semi had crashed into a telephone pole or a giant transformer somewhere had blown. And so a roommate was watching with us and we all jumped up and we ran outside onto the balcony. We were on the top floor of this apartment building and we ran outside onto the balcony and looked around and we couldn’t see anything. Traffic was flowing on the freeway and nothing was fire or anything like that. And so we were like, that is so weird. And we went back inside and it had shut off the tv.

Jim Harold (00:48:23):

Oh man.

Jessica (UT) (00:48:24):

So I was like, okay, no, this scene’s really important. And so you’ve got to see the whole scene. And so we rewound it to the beginning of that scene. And so again, the father’s trying to get the demon’s name and he was like, tell me who you are. And she goes through the list again and she’s like, I am Judas and I am Nero and I am Lucifer himself. And at the same exact time it shut off the TV again and made this big loud sound and my husband and my roommate and I, we each other. And we were like, did that just, okay, I guess we’re done watching the movie. We’re done. Alright, no more. And we even went later and a couple minutes later and we walked, knocked on a neighbor’s door and we’re like, did you guys have any weird our outages or anything like that? And they were like, no. And we’re like, did you hear any big huge booms? And they were looking at us like we were crazy. And needless to say, I don’t know if that experience alone was enough to turn him off of horror movies, but he has not watched one with me since.

Jim Harold (00:49:34):

So what do you think was going on? Do you think there was an evil spirit using the horror movie to mess with you? Maybe a playful spirit trying to mess? What do you think?

Jessica (UT) (00:49:48):

I don’t know. But having gotten to know his family better over the years, his mom has a very firm stance on her personally. She does not do scary movies because when she was younger, I can’t remember what film she was watching. Not one that I consider particularly scary actually. But she was watching and it was giving her such bad nightmares that she said, she said a prayer. And she said, if you, I promise never to watch anything like this ever again, if you just make me stop being so afraid. And she never has. And so, I don’t know, maybe it was her guardian angel or something extending its wing over her son or something.

Jim Harold (00:50:28):

Now let me ask you this. Now your husband won’t watch horror movies, but what about you?

Jessica (UT) (00:50:34):

Oh yeah, no, I still watch ’em all the time. I just watch ’em by myself in the dark and with my blanket over my head, I’ve found a couple sister-in-laws and we’re the spooky sister in laws, so.

Jim Harold (00:50:45):

There you go. Well, I know you’ve got more stories and the ones that you’re going to tell on a future episode are a little calmer. But thanks so much for sharing that story. And I do think maybe sometimes, I mean, I love horror movies. My wife can’t stand them, Dar can’t stand ’em. But I love them. My kids love him. But I do wonder sometimes if they could stir things up spiritually a little bit sometimes. I do think that might very well be possible. Jessica, thank you for being a part of the show and stay spooky.

Jessica (UT) (00:51:16):

Thank you.

Jim Harold (00:51:17):

Next up on the Campfire is Nicole knew you might remember she was on a while back and we’re so glad to have her back on the show. And this particular story revolves around her son. Nicole, welcome to the show and please tell us what happened.

Nicole (WI) (00:51:30):

Hi, thanks for having me back. I’m going to tell a story that still scares me to this day. It gives me the chills. So this was an experience that our son had. It’s been a little while ago now because he’s a teenager. So at the time, if I remember correctly, he was about five years old and he had been sleeping in mine and my husband’s bedroom since he was a baby, he experienced seizures for many years. So by this time as a child, he was sleeping in a bed that was perpendicular to our bed. It was on the opposite side of the bedroom. So I’m going to set this up hopefully so folks understand, so they can maybe try to visualize what he was seeing. So his bed was perpendicular to our bed, opposite side of the room. So if he was laying in bed, he would be looking at our feet. And then behind our bed or behind the head of our bed was a large window. And I don’t remember, obviously if this night, if we had a bright moon or if it was dark. I don’t remember that.


And he was telling me the story the next morning. So he was in bed sleeping. We’d all been sleeping for quite a while. He has no idea what time it was. And something woke him up. He didn’t typically wake up at night, but he woke up to see what he thought was the person kneeling on the end of our bed looking up. He said he could see a very dark figure. He said it was clearly very black and it was just kneeling. And he says that it was kneeling because he could see that it was clearly on the foot of our bed. And it was about that height that if a person were kneeling and he could see, and he said it was looking up, he could clearly see that this figure had its head looking straight up. He could see what looked like long hair falling down.


Its back now. I do not have long hair ever since he was born. I’ve had right now my head, I have buzz cut. It’s very short. And at that time I had a bob length haircut at the time. At this story, he has two older sisters who had very long hair, but they in their own bedroom, he could see that this figure was skinnier than me. Not that I’m fat, but he said it was clearly skinnier than me or his sisters. He knew it was not any one of us. So it was just looking up at the ceiling, hair falling down the back, and he just laid there in bed, not moving because he was so confused. He was like, what is going on? In his little mind, trying to figure out what the heck was going on. He has no idea how long this went on. And he said at some point the only movement was that the figure slowly pulled its head down and looked at him and he said, at this time he became scared. No facial features, just very, very black. But he knew it was staring at him. He could feel that.


And he pulled the blanket up over his head to cover his eyes, like, oh my gosh, go away. And he would peek out and the figure was still there, staring at him, still there, staring at him, close his eyes. I know, and this is where it makes me get creeped out. That feeling you get when you’re telling a story and you have that. You know what I mean? Yeah, exactly. I still get that. So he said he would open his, pull up the blanket peek at it, see if it had gone away, and it would still be there staring at him. And he didn’t want to move because he thought, is it going to reach over and get him? And it’s not like we don’t have, our bedroom is not the largest bedroom. So there was probably about, I would say six feet between the foot of our bed and where he would be laying. So it was fairly close. So he said at one point he moved the blanket, was looking at whatever this thing was doing, and it just laid down. He said, it just looked like it laid down on the bed. And he knew this was not me or my husband because he could see our shapes on the bed. And then that scared him even more. This thing laid down on our bed.

Jim Harold (00:56:40):

Wow, that’s creepy.

Nicole (WI) (00:56:42):

It is creepy as hell. Creepy and excuse my language, but I’m still creeped out by that. And so the next morning he didn’t want to move. He didn’t know what to do. So the next morning he was telling us the story and we didn’t, what do you make of that? What do you we’re just like, okay. Wow.

Jim Harold (00:57:15):

Do you think there’s any possibility that was some sort of semi waking dream or do you think this is specifically something external that he was experiencing?

Nicole (WI) (00:57:30):

I don’t know. I don’t know. We have no idea. I hesitated to ask him if he remembered that, but I didn’t want to tell him. He likes to listen to your podcast, and I didn’t want him to hear me tell this story without his permission, so I did.

Jim Harold (00:57:52):

Oh, I think that makes sense. Yes.

Nicole (WI) (00:57:54):

Yeah. So I did ask his permission and he was, I said, do you remember that experience? And he said, yes. And he still can tell me to this day everything, how it made him feel, how scared he was. And I haven’t said to him, Hey, what do you think it was? Okay, we don’t know. I don’t know. I did ask him, were you awake? And he said, yes, without a doubt he was awake because this went on for several minutes. Who knows? He swears he was awake. So I don’t know. I have no idea.

Jim Harold (00:58:43):

One of the cool things about this particular story is a lot of times when small kids experience something and then you ask them when they’re teenagers, for example, they don’t remember any of it. And it’s kind of neat in this case. I mean, I guess if it’s traumatic, maybe it’s not. But for our purposes here, that is great that he actually remembers and said, yeah, this absolutely happened.

Nicole (WI) (00:59:09):

Yeah. Yeah. It has definitely stuck with him. It stuck with me.

Jim Harold (00:59:18):

Any thoughts of who or what it could have been?

Nicole (WI) (00:59:24):

I don’t know. I know that just based on past experiences that my husband’s grandfather, he’s passed on, but he still hangs around. We know that. But he never had long hair. I, if we have, do we have a relative who passed on who has long hair? I don’t know. I have no idea. I would hope that it was maybe someone who’s looking out for us, but I couldn’t even begin to think, and I wish I knew because the thought of something kneeling on my bed while I’m sleeping.

Jim Harold (01:00:12):

Yeah, that’s super creepy. I mean, the whole thing, it’s like terrifying. But the idea that it was on your bed. But the thing is, is that I wonder about that sometimes if spirits are here, be they positive past loved ones who were just visiting, or if they’re more sinister or maybe just people who used to live in that house, whatever it is, they could be here all the time. It’s like there’s certain frequencies of light that we can’t see. And it strikes me there could be one standard right next to me now. Hi mom. Could be be, it gets, yeah, it should be pretty bored if she watched me editing and things like that. But anyway, the point is they could be everywhere all the time. We don’t know. And I think that’s the thing is, I was talking with somebody about this I guess the other day. It’s okay to say you don’t know. It doesn’t mean that it isn’t real , but it’s okay not to know. I think the important thing is we have these conversations and we share those experiences like you shared yours today. Thanks so much, Nicole, for being on the show again, and stay spooky and a big shout out to your son. Now. You don’t have to. If you want to by first name, you can give him a shout out now. If you don’t want to, that’s okay too.

Nicole (WI) (01:01:32):

He would love a shout out. Like I said, he listens to your podcast with me. He greatly enjoys it. His name is Elliot, so he would love a shout out.

Jim Harold (01:01:43):

Elliot, stay spooky and thank you, Nicole. You stay spooky too. Thanks for being a part of the Campfire.

Nicole (WI) (01:01:49):

Thank you.

Jim Harold (01:01:50):

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Announcer (01:03:33):

You are listening to Jim Harold’s Campfire.

Jim Harold (01:03:36):

Maddy is on the line from Ontario, Canada, our friends up north. Always glad to talk with our friends, the Canadians and Maddy has one of my favorite kind of stories. I love those head scratchers and she’s got one. Maddy, welcome to the show. Tell us what happened.

Maddy (CAN) (01:03:54):

Thank you for having me. Yeah, so a couple of years ago, around spring of 2021, 2 friends and myself, Dakota and Alex, we would go on these bike rides probably once or twice a week in the evening, just in our little town. So we started going on these bike rides just for something to do a little adventure. We have a lot of forests in the area. We all like nature, so we would just find ourselves going to these spots. So this one spot in particular, we found this old radio tower that is out of commission now. It doesn’t work, but it’s kind of spooky and it has this eerie vibe and this forest in particular always had this sort of eerie vibe. So we start riding our bikes into there. And it’s interesting, there was another tower that wasn’t in the forest, but it’s light from the top of the tower would flash very slowly and then that flash would light up the forest and then go away again and light up the forest and go away. And then there was this low buzzing noise as well. So it kind of had this weird eerie riding our bikes through with that low buzzing noise. And then the flash that would flash and go away.


So as we would ride our bikes in, we got to where the radio tower was, we set our bikes down onto the ground and we go to hop this fence. So there’s just this normal chain link fence that surrounded the radio tower. So we start climbing over that fence. We climb a little bit up the tower and we sit there for a while and we just start telling spooky stories and just talking and just being kids. So we sit there for a while and we’re not far from the ground. So we would hear if anyone had come in, we would’ve heard anything around us. And it was completely silent. All you could hear was that buzzing, that low buzzing noise in the forest. So after a while we come back down, we hopped the fence, Dakota and I pick up our bikes to start to get going.


And Alex is like, guys, guys, I can’t get my bike. And we’re like, what? So we come back to help him out. We put a flashlight on and this is where it gets really weird, and the head scratcher comes in and his bike as we left them on the ground a little bit away from the fence, is now up against the fence. And a whole piece of the barbed wire, like the steel wire, whatever it is from the fence, had wrapped itself about 10 times completely around one of the spoke spokes on his bike. So this hard piece of metal wire is wrapped around the spoke and we cannot budget at all. It is so hard we’re thinking, how did this happen? How could someone have gotten in here and do this without us hearing them? And all three of us are trying it and it’s way too strong to even untwist.


So in this moment we start getting really anxious. My friend Dakota and I start freaking out. We turned our flashlights onto the forest thinking that there’s something or someone out there that is coming after us or something. So we kind of have a little lookout on the forest as Alex is spending about 30 to 40 minutes to try to get this unwrapped, which eventually he did. So eventually he got it unwrapped and we just sat there waiting that entire time. And once he did, we were like, we’re out of here. We booked it out. We got on our bikes rode so fast out, we got to a near parking lot and we sat down and we started just talking and talking and going, how could that have happened? And yeah, it was really interesting with the mix of the kind of eeriness of forest and being in an abandoned place and then that happening and we still have no idea what happened. 

Jim Harold (01:08:15):

Wow. Wow. Well, first of all, I would say this is my viewpoint. Anybody out there don’t jump fences and go around towers. You might hurt yourself, don’t do that. But oh, I wonder what in the world, what in the world, how could it have wrapped itself around it by itself? So do you think it was some kind of trickster spirit? This, I mean, did you have any sign of what it was? Was it like a cell phone tower or do you think it was a radio station tower or do you think it was something like some madman in the middle of the woods built? What? Were there signs that keep out or danger or anything like that.

Maddy (CAN) (01:08:54):

No. So I think it was a radio tower. That’s what my friend Alex said, that he thinks it’s an old abandoned radio tower that is there that just had been left there in the woods. And then there’s just the fence that surrounds it. There’s probably signs, not that we were looking or caring much about them, but yeah, we talked it over. We all kind of made jokes and we’re like, yeah, along the lines of this trickster or something that just wanted to mess with us and do something strange. Other than that, we didn’t really have an explanation and we were all very set on the fact that we don’t think it was another human. The amount of time it took us to get it off, and we were so close to the spot that it was in that we were the only three in there at nighttime in the forest, you would’ve at least heard someone walking or the crunching of the leaves or something.

Jim Harold (01:09:56):

And it reminds me of these liminal spaces, if you see these videos, and again, I don’t recommend anybody do this, but if you see these videos on YouTube and things of these abandoned shopping malls and movie theaters.

Maddy (CAN) (01:10:10):

Like the back rooms!

Jim Harold (01:10:11):

Yeah, just so eerie. It’s so eerie because at one time these places were so full of life and now they’re just abandoned. And then you’ll see the most mundane thing, like a paper plate. Somebody just left there five minutes ago, but the place may have been abandoned for 10 or 15 years and it’s just extremely eerie. Now, personally, I think everybody should stay out of those places. It could be highly dangerous. There’s stuff that could be, first of all, trespassing, and second of all, you could hurt yourself. So I don’t recommend anybody do that. But when you see these things, they’re terrifying. That’s these liminal weird spaces where what was there before.


And I don’t know, when I see that stuff, I just think about we always get wrapped up in our lives and how we think everything is permanent, the way things are going to be now. And then the house I’m sitting in today, love my house, you know what? Someday somebody’s going to look at it and say, okay, time to knock that down. I mean, it’s just weird, the kind of transitory nature of life and something that was vibrant and in use this radio tower and now it’s abandoned and maybe the home of some kind of weird trickster spirit.

Maddy (CAN) (01:11:37):

Right, yeah. Something, some sort of weird energy. Yeah, I agree. And I think, yeah,. I was just going to say the comparison to anyone that’s listening that’s seen those backroom videos and that eerie feeling, that is very much the feeling of that forest and that tone, that area there. Yeah.

Jim Harold (01:11:59):

Very, very strange indeed. Be careful out there, Maddy. Don’t go hopping any more fences. But I do thank you for hopping our fence figuratively and coming over to the Campfire and sharing your story.

Maddy (CAN) (01:12:12):

Yeah, for sure. Thanks so much for having me.

Jim Harold (01:12:14):

Stay spooky. Cory is on the line from Washington State. He and his family are great supporters and great listeners and we appreciate that. And Cory has one of my favorite kinds of stories. It’s another head scratcher. Cory, welcome to the show. Thank you for joining us and tell us what happened.

Cory (WA) (01:12:32):

Yes, thanks for having me. So this actually happened March of last year. This is pretty recent. My family and I, we just recovered from Covid. We’re getting better again. And as a result of that, I was having some back tension that had bugging me. So I’m using a heating pad a lot and we’re finally well enough and we’re going to travel across the state to go visit my parents. So it’s me, my kids, and my two little small dogs. We’re driving across the state and I start feeling the back tension. So I’m like, I got to pull over somewhere and get the heating pad on and I pull over in. I’m in a suburb of Seattle where I decide to pull off into. It’s a populous area. It’s not like a giant city. So I pull off and of course I happen to pick an exit where it’s like you hope you can find a place to pull off quickly.


But it takes me a while to find a good safe place to pull over. And I end up about a quarter mile off the highway, lots of trees, lots of evergreens, forested area, but still we’re in a town. And just to set the scene, the road that I end up on, you go down a little bit of a hill, it’s paved, go about a hundred yards about a football field length, goes back up again. So it’s kind of like a little depression of a road and it’s not the middle of nowhere. There’s actually, in fact, I parked, I did a U-turn and I actually ended up parking near the entrance to a condo or something like that, or in an apartment building. So we weren’t in the middle of nowhere. And I even parked behind, I think like a water delivery truck or something. So I get parked, I get out of the car, I’m out of the car, maybe 10 seconds.


I get out, get the heating pad, I get back in, and again, from where I’m at, you have a pretty good vantage point of whether somebody’s coming down the hill from either end of the road. You can see people coming in and out. I didn’t see anybody. So right as I get back in the car, all of a sudden a guy in a truck just appears behind my car out of nowhere. And it’s a smaller truck. I think it was maybe a late model, maybe like a Chevy love truck, kind of a light utility. It’s seventies, eighties. And before I know it, just as I get in, he’s at my window and he’s maybe looks in his twenties or thirties, got a little bit of a beard, a hat and a flannel, typical northwest, but he’s really frantic. And my dog, my little dogs are barking like crazy, stranger danger, and they’re barking through this whole exchange.


But I cracked the window just enough to hear him, but not enough for the dogs to get out. And I’m picking up about every other word, but he says, Hey, hey, hey, are you staying in this area? I’m like, well, what do you mean? Am I staying in this area? He’s like, well, you camping here. Are you going to be staying long? I’m like, no, I actually just pulled over on the side of the road. I’m going to leave right now, actually on my way out. And it was one of those situations where you’re trying to tell somebody you’re leaving, but they keep you there to tell you to leave. So I kept trying to say, I’m trying to go, I’m trying to go. And he’s like, yeah, yeah, yeah, you got to leave here because it’s getting really dangerous around here right now. And I go, okay, I’m ready to leave.


Let’s go. And he is like, no, you don’t understand. There’s this guy and he’s threatening me and my girlfriend, he threatened to kill us. And I’m thinking, okay, I hope you can find help and safety. I don’t know what’s going on, but yes, we’re more than happy to leave this area. And I don’t remember how the conversation ends. I think I say, well, you can hear my dogs are barking. I should probably go. So I just roll my window up and he goes back and his truck, and that’s upping the tension in my back a little bit. And I’m getting ready to go. Well, I’m boxed in between his truck and the truck in front of me. So I’m trying to be careful backing up, and I’m kind of using my mirrors, using the camera on my car to look back. I tap his bumper.


I’m thinking, oh geez, okay, well how hard did I hit it? Do I got to get out and talk to him? So I start to pull forward a little bit, and this is the weird part, just as I’m about to even turn around to maybe talk to him or I’m not out of the car yet, he drives backwards at speed and with precision in such a way where it looked as if somebody just hit reverse on him and he went reverse back in time. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s almost as if, I don’t know if there’s a movie that came out a couple of years ago called Tenet. It’s by Christopher Nolan. He did the Batman movie, he did Inception. And in that movie, it’s about a technology where you go into this machine, you come out, but you are moving backwards through time where everyone else is going forward.


That’s what it looked like. Now I’m a skeptic; like you, I’m a skeptic, but strange things happen. I’m open to that. So I thought, okay, and also just to kind of clarify what it looked like was he went from zero to 40 in nothing, no time at all. He drove fluidly from the shoulder of the road right back onto the road, straight back up the road. And then my daughter, from her vantage point, she saw him then backwards, do a tight curve off into the trees somewhere. There is no visible driveway or path or anything that he would’ve gone into, didn’t crash anything. There was no cliff. He could have fallen. There was nothing. So we don’t know where he went. And I also don’t know where he came from because he just came out of nowhere.


And I really don’t know how to explain it. And I guess the thought that I’m having is okay, maybe it was just a guy who didn’t have insurance, kind of freaked out, wanted to leave the scene, and I get that that happens. But here’s the thing, if you’re going to leave either, I don’t know why he just didn’t pull forward and drive forward down the road, or at least maybe whip a U-turn and drive up there. But he drove backwards. I don’t even remember hearing much of a sound either of the truck, much of the sound of the motor or the squealing of tires. He left in a hurry. Yeah, that was the thing. It was just bizarre. And I think the thing of it is that I turned to my daughter and we’re like, what was that? Did you see that tune? She’s like, yeah, I saw that. I’ve never seen anything in my life. So either he’s like a secret stunt driver who’s practiced this move forever or something else. 

Jim Harold (01:18:50):

Yeah. The weird thing, I mean, the first thing that caught my attention is you used the word Chevy Love. Now, probably most people listening now don’t even know what that was, but that was a small truck that Chevy made. It was, I think it was either, either was or a precursor to the S 10, which was late seventies, early eighties. And you’ll notice there aren’t any of them on the road. I don’t think I’ve seen one of those for 20 years.

Cory (WA) (01:19:16):

Yeah, neither. And again, listening to your show, I began to kind of think to myself, well, I don’t remember anything about him or his truck that I remember that put him necessarily in a time period. I thought to myself, he came out of nowhere frantically warning me about something in kind of an odd way, note. It was kind of a nonspecific warning. And I thought, was he somebody displaced from time? Was he? Now, I definitely made contact with the bumper. You could hear that. I mean, my daughter even noticed that as well. But I’ve heard some of your other callers talking about experiences with demon trucks or phantom vehicles, and I thought, did I just add myself one of those as well? And I mean, for what it’s worth, I would say this would be maybe a benevolent situation. He was clearly trying to warn off people from a potential danger in the area. But again, maybe it is some guy lives in the area who’s just super good at driving backwards. But what struck me also is if you’re trying to drive backwards out of an area, he was driving backwards at speed to him, what would be oncoming traffic, right? He couldn’t see anything up this short ramp. So recklessly driving, ace stuntman driver or something else. Inexplicable, maybe

Jim Harold (01:20:36):

Something else. Again, definition, quintessential head scratcher, kind of like you can’t categorize it. You can’t call it a ghost story, you can’t call it this, you can’t call it that. Just something that’s kind of gets to the point. And I’ve said this many times and it gets old to people probably, but I’m going to say it again. What have you learned in 18 years of podcasting? Almost 19. Now I’ve not learned much, but I’ve learned that the world is far stranger than we give it credit for. And weird stuff happens. It definitely happens. Cory, I know you have more stories. I hope you’ll come back on the show and share those. And thank you for sharing this head scratcher with us on the Campfire tonight.

Cory (WA) (01:21:17):

Thank you, Jim. Appreciate it.

Jim Harold (01:21:18):

Joe is on the line for Minneapolis. You’ll remember a while ago he was on the show and talked about this mysterious figure that materialized while he was out on a night walk when he was thinking about it. Very interesting. Now, something else that’s interesting. We have a lot of haunted things in the annal of Campfire going back to goodness, 2009, almost 15 years. But we’ve never had a haunted bouncy house, but Joe’s going to fix that. Joe, welcome back to the show. Tell us about this haunted bouncy house.

Joe (MN) (01:21:50):

Hi, Jim. Thanks for having me. So this was when I was a kid. My brother and I, we have birthdays that are really close to each other, so our parents would always throw us joint birthday parties. And this one, they rented a bunch of, I actually don’t know how old we were. We were probably elementary school. They rented a bunch of bouncy houses and inflatable structures. It was super fun. So we had a bunch of friends over, cousins were in the bouncy houses all day. And then for whatever reason, I was in the backyard alone right after the sun had gone down and the bouncy houses were still up, still inflated. And I had some kind of interaction with someone through the lining of this blue inflatable structure. It wasn’t a bouncy house, but basically the structure, it’s a circular tunnel. So you enter through the front, then it’s a circular tunnel with a chamber in the middle.


And I was convinced that there was someone inside of this. I don’t remember exactly what the interaction was. Maybe they were jabbing from inside the structure, jabbing the lining, and I was jabbing the lining. But then I thought to myself, okay, it’s probably one of my brothers or a friend. I’m going to go get him. I’m going to be like, gotcha. So I went in through the front and I did a lap of the creeping around. I did a lap of the circular tunnel, and then I entered the middle chamber. And this realization just dawned on me, combined with this absolute dread that there was no one inside. And all of my instincts were saying, get out of here, just run. So I got out of the bouncy house or the bouncy structure as fast as I could. I went inside where it was light, and I don’t think I told anyone until probably years later. I was just so relieved to be back with people after having that experience. Sure.

Jim Harold (01:23:54):

So basically you had this interaction in a bouncy house, and you were the only one in the bouncy house other than whatever this was, if it was an entity or a Ghost or whatever it would be.

Joe (MN) (01:24:07):

Yeah, who knows? I was very freaked out though.

Jim Harold (01:24:09):

Well, you think about it, okay, let’s think about this. You have haunted theaters, haunted hotels, haunted hospitals, places with a lot of energy. Where else is there more energy than a bouncy house with small children in? It could have been the residue of a ghost of a child who had once played in that bouncy house. You know what I’m saying? I mean, it’s a little out there, but it’s a possible explanation. It actually reminds me quite a bit of a story. My wife had a number of years ago, this had to be a dozen years ago or so at least, and not the house we’re in now, but she had gone upstairs to our bedroom and we had our wrapping paper for Christmas out and she got it. And you know how you go into a room when it’s not? Absolutely, it’s dark, but you step out in the hallway and it’s light so you don’t bother to turn the light on.


Oh yeah. So she grabbed the roll of paper and she’s holding out, you would almost like you would hold a sword or something with it sticking out, and she felt something pull the gift wrap. And she thought, ha ha, Jim. Very funny. And she turns on the light and nobody’s there. And I’m downstairs, me and my two kids are downstairs. There’s nobody upstairs, but somebody pulled that wrapping paper or something creepy, and she still talks about that. She still talks about that. We just, Christmas was recently and that came up again. So this thing where you’re like, oh, I know who that is. And then the other person’s in totally a different room and you’re by yourself. And that leads to the question, who poked you in that bouncy house? Who pulled that gift wrapping? Another one of those head scratchers, Joe.

Joe (MN) (01:25:51):

That’s a creepy feeling.

Jim Harold (01:25:53):

Yeah. Yeah, it is. It certainly is. I know you have another story you said you’re going to sign up to tell that and look forward to that. And thank you so much for being a part of the Campfire and stay spooky. 

Joe (MN):

Thanks, Jim. You too. 

Jim Harold: Thanks so much for tuning into this week’s Campfire. Please make sure to share the show with a friend. It means so much that is so important. So please share the show with a friend. We have a couple of shout outs, special Valentine’s and birthday shout outs. First up is Diana. Diana said, Hey, Jim, love your show. My partner introduced me to it about three years ago, and I’ve been a listener ever since. She’s a great fan of yours and would love a spooky shout out for her birthday on February 14th. Her name is Cynthia. Thank you, and stay spooky.


Well, Diana, I am glad to do that. And Cynthia, I hope you have the best birthday ever. Happy Valentine’s Day, and of course, stay spooky. And we’re not done yet. We’ve got another very important greeting today. This is from Melinda. Melinda said, hi, Jim. My partner Manuel, is a big fan of your show and recently appeared on two different episodes. Being on your show, brought him so much joy. Thank you for having him. She said she just purchased a stay spooky shirt from my Etsy store for Valentine’s Day, and she wanted to know would it be possible to give Manuel a shout out on the show? He would be so surprised and he doesn’t miss an episode. So Manuel, I’d like to give you a special shout out. Melinda says she would like to know if you would be her spooky Valentine. I think that is so cool.


Stay spooky, Manuel, and happy Valentine’s Day to you and Melinda. And I love to give shout outs to people and I appreciate Melinda checked out JimHarold.com/merch and clicked on the Etsy entry there and found we’re really doing well on that Etsy store. We’re a star seller now. Got a lot of great reviews and people are loving it. And Dar is just coming out with some great designs just to release a new one for St. Patrick’s Day, a spooky themed shirt for St. Patrick’s Day. And we just had the Valentine’s Day shirt, which actually Valentine’s you could wear at any time of the year if you are a spooky lover. So I think it is so cool. So I thank her and I thank Melinda, and all of you have gone to it and supported us because that does help us a lot. Again, that is Jim Harold dot com slash merch. Click on the Etsy button. And the other thing it does, not only does it support us financially, it also gets the word out about the shows. So thank you so much. We’ll talk to you next time. Have a great week, everybody. Stay safe. Share the show and stay spooky. Bye-Bye.

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