Reader Friday: Haunted House

You are offered $10,000 to spend a night alone in a haunted house. Many people swear it’s truly hauntedβ€”including a wild-eyed coot whose hair turned white after his one-night stay.

Would you do it?

What three items would you bring with you?

59 thoughts on “Reader Friday: Haunted House

  1. For $10,000? Sure I would do it.

    I would bring a video camera, a garden sprayer loaded with Suspend, and a five-gallon container of holy water.

    Have a great weekend, Jim.

  2. Yeah, for $10,000 I would do it.

    My three items:
    Tranquilizer gun and darts
    Ultra-bright strobe light – spot light
    High volume boom box loaded with “heavenly” music.

    And since the condition was “alone IN the house” I would give several friends a cut of the $10,000 to guard the OUTSIDE of the house.

    Oh, after the ordeal, I would write a TKZ post, “Ghost Writing Pays Better.”

    • This is perfect, Steve! Reminds me of the vampire hunting squad in John Carpenter’s Vampires. They used a cable harpoon attached to a winch to spear vampires in their nests and then mechanically haul them into broad daylight to burst into flames.

      I think with that setup you make it through the night, and in fine style.

  3. Embarrassing confession: I’m sort of addicted to “Ghost Adventures” on cable. Would I stay inside for ten grand? Absolutely. Paid up front.

    As for I’d bring, that’s a challenge because if there’s one constant power among the “real” ghosts of “Ghost Adventures”, it’s the ability to screw with electricity and batteries. So, I’m afraid my first choice–bright lights–would be wasted. Ditto my second choice, which would be night vision goggles.

    So, I think I’ll settle with:
    A jug of pre-mixed martinis
    A comfy chair
    And, to be on the safe side, a crucifix

  4. I’d do it. For some reason, my family seems to be very sensitive to ghostly appearances – except me. If I’m around, ghosts just don’t appear. So maybe they don’t like me. I dunno. But I figure I’d be pretty safe.

    I’d take a comfy mattress, a good pillow, and my phone. If I can’t sleep, at least I’ll have something to do. That 10K would sure come in handy…

  5. Sure. Stayed at a friend’s house, and he swore there was a ghost that liked to visit the guest room and rearrange jewelry. The Hubster immediately took the earrings I’d brought and set them atop the dresser.
    No show.
    I’d bring reading material, a bottle of Jameson reserve, and a sleeping bag.

  6. Confession: Haunted houses freak me out. Perhaps I can trace this back to seeing House on Haunted Hill when I a mere pup. That movie TERRIFIED me. Since then, I can’t even go on Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion without a little knot of disquiet in my gut.

    So ten grand would be the minimum for me. As to my three items?

    1. Gilstrap (along with his three items)
    2. My Paperwhite
    3. A Langer’s Deli #19 pastrami sandwich (if this is to be my last meal, might as well enjoy it)

  7. Honestly, Jim, I won’t know if I would until someone comes forth with the offer. But, I’ve thought about the three items in case of such an Inciting Incident.

    1) Rosary beads, for perhaps an agonizing stream of “Hail Mary, full of Grace …”
    2) My smart phone, with which to document paranormal events — and to supplement my Hail Mary’s with panicked journaling.
    3) A mirror, to hold up to the wild-eyed coot should he emerge midway through the night so that he might reconsider his arc — and in case I reconsider my own.

  8. I’d be torn, Jim. Haunted houses spook me as well. I’ve never even read Shirley Jackson’s classic novel.

    I’d also suspect a setup. On the other hand, ten grand. So, if I could be certain it wasn’t a setup, I’d do it. Since the instructions were clear that I had to go alone, I couldn’t bring Steve as one of my items (love his setup). So, I’d bring a zero gravity chair, a the brightest camping lantern I could find, and my own Kindle paper white.

  9. Sure. I would bring the little vile of holly water I have from the Vatican. I would also bring a bottle of Red Label. All that’s left is to mix the two and I’m double protected. Maybe some ice.

  10. Oh heck yeah. I’d bring Julie Glover to be my spider patrol, popcorn and sodas, and my husband, to hang onto in the really scary parts.

  11. I would definitely do it. Because I think ghosts and such are a buncha hooey.

    But…just to be on the safe side, I’d bring my very large German Shepherd, Hoka, who has very large ears and teeth.

    And my nine; maybe my .22 magnum carbine. (Because I’d be far more afraid of the solids than the ghosts…)

    And chocolate. πŸ™‚

  12. Absolutely not. First of all I’m a coward — dark and spooky with funny noises just isn’t my cup of tea. Besides, I suspect haunted houses are haunted by something other than ghosts and goblins. Maybe some semi-smart people who know something about electrical systems and radio waves.

    Interestingly, I just finished reading Agatha Christie’s “The Pale Horse” which deals with seances, mediums, and murder. It’s a great story with a very surprising ending.

  13. My grandfather’s old family home is haunted, but they’re all family so I’m used to it. $10,000 is a little low, but more than I’m making in a day, so why not?

    I’d bring my Ruger, some holy water, and Tyrus, who I think would scare anyone off.

  14. I live in the family homeplace where my dead come and go as they wish, but they are the good dead and protective, and I only feel them, never see them. No amount of money would make me walk into a house filled with dark things which would open me to dark energies.

    My suggestions for anyone else. First, pray for protection, and surround yourself with good energy. Things to bring. The most powerful light source you can manage as well as the standard flashlight. Your cell phone ready to play a loud rendition of religious music, and a good friend to watch your back.

  15. Oh, this has been the best “would you do X for $X” response lineup I’ve seen in awhile! You’re all making me snorkle my coffee here!
    Although I have heard things in a previous house, I’m a lot like BJ: non-sensitive. Not for lack of trying! I’d love to have the experiences, but they just don’t seem to happen to me. With all of the antiques in my house (including Victorian memento mori) you’d think SOMETHING would have manifested by now!
    I think Steve’s setup was brilliant. I’d picked him as part of my “plus three” until I realized it was a rule-breaker. So I guess I’ll take a page from his book and choose the “friends outside” option instead. (Although that never seems to work for the heroes, does it? Hmmm… But I might be thinking more of pure horror movies instead of mere hauntings.)
    So, i guess my list is as such:
    I’d bring my Sig (because the real threat is likely to be mortal)
    Snacks (that includes coffee because I never leave home without it!)
    My phone (I thought about my laptop but it’s just a word processor. I can get more done on a phone and still jot down notes for writing. And the phone has a built-in flashlight!)
    Thanks for the hilarity, everyone!

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