Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Devil's Tree

The NJ Midnight Society had our first official expedition earlier tonight, first to the rumored Albino Village in Clifton NJ. We were all pissed when we saw that it had recently been bulldozed and the land is to be used by Caldwell Banker.

Fine, be that way.

Okay, then we went out to Parsippany, since theres this road that 'supposedly' a headless horseman trots down at night dressed in Revolutionary Way regalia. Sounds like bullshit, probably is bullshit. I find it hard to believe that something oughta The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is riding up and down Intervale Road near Rt. 46 on a nightly basis.

We then wanted to go to Mt. Hope Rd in Mt. Hope, because people have reportred seeing ghosts in the fields on either side of it. Now, I coulnt get it on my GPS so I call 411 where after waiting for 8 minutes, was told by a bitchy 'supervisor' that I should call the post office and SHE HUNG UP THE PHONE ON ME.

FIne, be that way.

Then, we set our sights on The Devil’s Tree out in Bernard’s Township.

The drive was smooth, but as we approached Mountain Road, a thick fog –no joke- appeared. This wasn’t so much evil spirits screwing with us, it had just rained.

Either way, I lit the tree up in my high-beams and pulled the Avenger to the side of the road across the street from the park with the Tree resides.

I led the way with Frank, we walked right up to the tree and I was in the midst of explaining to him the history of it when a black Escalade bumbled along the road into the housing development.

The occupants screamed “DEVIL’S TREE! IT’LL GET YOU! DON’T BE HANGING NOBODY!” Me and Clay shouted back in unison: “JUST YOU!”

Once that passed, I knelt down by the red rock at the base of the trunk, called Heat Rock, which is always warmer than the outside air and supposedly is a ‘gateway to hell.’

From around the corner, I saw a pair of Crown Vic headlights pointed at us.

Freaking out, I killed my flashlight and stood perfectly still, from fifty feet away, I hear Nicky and Clay freaking out.

“Light! Turn on the light!” Clay whipped out his cell phone and shone it to where they saw something, and they both chorused “oh holy shit!”

“There's a cop car over there!”

“There's something over HERE!”

"I'm gonna shit!" Its something he says when he's trying to be funny, but in this case, the panic in his voice showed the urgency of the situation.

Now I'm faced with this choice: Light up the area around them and expose our position to this Cop, when we're trespassing on public ground, or do I let them panic?

Fortunately, I didn't have to think too hard, at that instant, I saw that the 'cop-car' was in fact a Yellow Cab, and I trained my flashlight on where my brother and girlfriend were standing. They pointed north and my light chased the shadows away from clearing in the high grass. I saw “something” vanish like smoke from a BBQ grill.

It was black, about the size of a 35 gallon trash bin. The pair that was closer said it was the size of a small black bear. It defiantly had a shape to it, much like the stack of three car tires in my garage, or the Sears Shop-Vac that everyone sees my Dad vacuuming the leaves out of my front yard with. This thing had volume to it as well, and according to Clay and Nicky, when they shone their cell phone lights at it, it was like a "black hole" if you will, the lights went all around it, but this thing didn't reflect any light at all, it was just darkness surrounded by the dull blue haze of Clay's Pantech Duo.

I carry a 4", 440-Steel serrated spring-assisted folding knife, its small, heavy, black and looks quite evil. Oddly enough, I actually thought that when Clay said it looked like a bear, that it WAS one.

"Do you wanna know why I use a knife? Guns are too quick. You can't savor all the... little... emotions. In... you see, in their last moments, people show you who they really are. So in a way, I know your friends better than you ever did. Would you like to know which of them were cowards?" Nicky hates it when I do that impression, probably cuz it's pretty good.

As soon as I saw that, I whipped out my folding knife and ushered Frank away from the Tree, my light trained on the spot where we saw the ‘thing’. Getting the others together, I searched the whole area around and found absolutely nothing. Without warning, every cricket in the field who were all quiet up until that point began to chirp and squeak. I take a last look at the Tree and we all went back to my car. Something was different about it, almost like the tree was looking back at us, those knots being its eyes. Something awful happened there a long time ago, and whoever was killed there, still lurks around.

On the way home, we all tried to reason what we had seen, and no one could logically explain what it was other than a ghost. We all saw it, so it wasn’t like Nicky and Clay were making it up. But it was, without a doubt, SOMETHING.

I thought it was more of a smoke-consistency, Nicky and Clay said it was more solid, like it had a real mass to it. Either way, it didn’t respond well to either one of our lights.

I’m actually not as shaken-up as I was when I saw my first ghosts, and as far as the NJ Midnight Society’s first expedition, I think it went pretty well.

All the pictures were taken a while ago, I gotta get my camera working.

My brother, in his infinite wisdom, said, "I'd shit" if he ever saw a ghost.

When driving home, he said, "The Devil stuck a plug in my ass and exposed himself."

Yeah, something like that.

Weird NJ's take on it.

Heat Rock. If you touch it, it's warmer than everything else. Seriously, it is.

Not a ghost.

There's a myth that if you touch the tree, your hands turn black.
Its true, but its not demonic or haunted, just tar on the side of the tree.
Takes FOREVER to get off.

I can't figure out what the white spot is, but its not the moon!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

NJ Midnight Society

This morning, I offiicially founded the New Jersey Midnight Society, which is a paranormal investigation group focusing on 'haunted' places in the NJ area.
Our mission is to document the existence of phenomena associated with a specific legend or rumor in an area.

Thus far, the orginization consists of
Myself and Nicole as co-president
Clayton as vice-president

I'm designing a logo for this, and I intend on -after getting my camera fixed- to take GOOD film footage showing some of our trips and hopefully, catch Casper on tape.


Hackensack Oil Fields

Around the Rt. 80 overpass in Hackensack is the abandoned oil complex once belonging to the King Motor Oil Corp, which has since left. Nearest I can tell, they relocated to Philly before becoming a thing of the past.

It was here that I first got “busted” by a local, a story I told about a month ago:

“Also, a good cover story is good to have. I once had a half-deaf and nearly all blind guy catch me in the abandoned office buildings near the Route 80 overpass in Hackensack. They’re part of a pretty big oil field that’s been empty for –nearest I can tell- over thirty years. I heard footsteps and knew I was busted. Rummaging through a desk drawer I found a bunch of papers with King Motor Oil Co. on the letterhead. I memorized it, pulled out my camera, turned it on, and opened my knife, concealing it in my back pocket. He wasn’t a cop, matter of fact, he was probably homeless and living in one of the shacks under Route 80, but once he saw me, which took a while because he had cataracts looking full ashtrays in his eyes, he asked what I was doing there. I fed him a bullshit line about how a close family member – I said my uncle William Costigan -since I had watched The Departed for the hundredth time- was on their deathbed –I know I’m going to hell for this one but it saved me a trip up the road in a cop car- and how they wanted to know what became of the place they used to work at. He said “don’t take ‘nothin.” After a full minute of him staring at me with those dead eyes, I took the hint to leave. As I was walking out he said to the space I was standing in, “Tell Billy I’m sorry.”

Quint from Jaws put it best describing this guy when he said, “His eyes,... he's got lifeless eyes. Black eyes. Like a doll's eyes. When he comes at ya, doesn't seem to be living... until he bites ya, and those black eyes roll over white and then...”

“I think that I am familiar with the fact that you are going to ignore this particular problem until it swims up and BITES YOU ON THE ASS!”

“We’re gonna need a bigger boat”.

Any other random Jaws quotes I wanna throw in?

God I love that movie.

It’s a great place to venture to, if you’re careful not to piss-off the construction guys who own the area under the overpass, and know that when this old fella tells you to leave, leave.

I’ve been there four times, been busted once, and had a great time all around.

There he is!