Pub regulars terrorized by backside-pinching spirit
Terrified regulars at the Queen’s Arms have been keeping their backs to the wall since they realised the randy ghost was stalking the bar.
And it has become so bothersome that the exasperated owners have had called in a team of ghostbusters to give the saucy spook the bum’s rush.
Staff at the Birmingham city centre boozer have nicknamed the ghost Grasper after they described feeling a “firm pinch” to the buttocks.
Assistant manager Paula Wharton, 41, initially believed the tweaks on her body were muscle spasms.
She said: “One night three of us were talking and I mentioned that I’d felt this pinch on my bum, and everyone else said that it had happened to them too.
“It can’t have been a customer as I’ve never had my bum pinched when I’ve been stood behind the bar.
“It’s happened to all of us on a few occasions, it can happen at any time, night or day.
“We’ve nicknamed the ghoul Grasper after Casper the friendly ghost but he’s a bit too friendly for our liking.”
But it’s not just staff at the pub who have felt the pinch — customers have also fallen victim to the ghoul’s roving hands.
Pretty Ashley Beland, 26, said she thought she had been groped after her encounter with the ghost.
She said: “I was stood at the bar enjoying a glass of wine when I suddenly felt a sharp pinch to my bum.
“My instant reaction was that it might have been a sleazy bloke trying his luck, but when I spun around ready to give him a piece of my mind there was no-one there.
“I was really confused until the staff explained that there was a ghost running around the place pinching people on the bottom.
“It was a little scary, but I suppose there are worse things that a ghost could do to you.”
Customers have also witnessed chairs moving on their own, heard footsteps when the pub is empty and seen plumes of smoke swirling around.
And it is even thought that several ghouls may lurk around the 170-year-old pub after last orders.
A bald-headed ghost has been spotted walking through walls to find the bar, while rumours suggest that a young girl died in the building decades ago after falling down the stairs.
Manager Christian Dixon, 28, said baffled staff could not agree on the cause of the eerie goings-on.
He said: “We each have our own theories as to what’s causing these occurrences.
“But whatever it is, it does seem some customers and staff love the place so much they just can’t bring themselves to leave.
“A team of ghostbusters is set to visit in the next few weeks.
“They’re in for a tough night.” - thesun
Family flees house they say is haunted
Just one week after Josue Chinchilla and Michele Callan moved into their new home in Toms River, the couple and her two children plodded into the lobby of a local hotel about 1:15 a.m. and asked for a room.
As soon as the family had settled into the three-bedroom ranch at the corner of Terrace and Lowell avenues on March 1, they began to suspect they were not its only tenants.
The family would come home and find their clothes and towels ejected from the closets and strewn over the floors. Doors would creak open and slam closed in unoccupied areas of the house. Lights switched on and off without human intervention. At night, footsteps could be heard from the kitchen after everyone was tucked in and unintelligible whispering seemed to fade in and out of thin air, according to the couple.
The most disturbing and consistent phenomenon, they claim, is the sound that comes through the vents to the basement — the muffled din of something lumbering seven feet below their feet. Continue reading at Family flees house they say is haunted - w/ video
Did Cold Weather Cause the Salem Witch Trials?
By Natalie Wolchover - Historical records indicate that, worldwide, witch hunts occur more often during cold periods, possibly because people look for scapegoats to blame for crop failures and general economic hardship. Fitting the pattern, scholars argue that cold weather may have spurred the infamous Salem witch trials in 1692.
The theory, first laid out by the economist Emily Oster in her senior thesis at Harvard University eight years ago, holds that the most active era of witchcraft trials in Europe coincided with a 400- year period of lower-than-average temperature known to climatologists as the "little ice age."Oster, now an associate professor of economics at the University of Chicago, showed that as the climate varied from year to year during this cold period, lower temperatures correlated with higher numbers of witchcraft accusations.
The correlation may not be surprising, Oster argued, in light of textual evidence from the period: popes and scholars alike clearly believed witches were capable of controlling the weather, and therefore, affecting food production.
The Salem witch trials fell within an extreme cold spell that lasted from 1680 and 1730 — one of the chilliest segments of the little ice age. The notion that weather may have instigated those trials is being revived by Salem State University historian Tad Baker in his forthcoming book, "A Storm of Witchcraft" (Oxford University Press, 2013). Building on Oster's thesis, Baker has found clues in diaries and sermons that suggest a harsh New England winter really may have set the stage for accusations of witchcraft.
According to the Salem News, one clue is a document that mentions a key player in the Salem drama, Rev. Samuel Parris, whose daughter Betty was the first to become ill in the winter of 1691-1692 because of supposed witchcraft. In that document, "Rev. Parris is arguing with his parish over the wood supply," Baker said. A winter fuel shortage would have made for a fairly miserable colonial home, and "the higher the misery quotient, the more likely you are to be seeing witches."
Psychology obviously played an important role in the Salem events; the young girls who accused their fellow townsfolk of witchcraft are believed to have been suffering from a strange psychological condition known as mass hysteria. However, the new theory suggests the hysteria may have sprung from dire economic conditions. "The witchcraft trials suggest that even when considering events and circumstances thought to be psychological or cultural, key underlying motivations can be closely related to economic circumstances," Oster wrote.
Weather patterns continue to trigger witchcraft accusations in many parts of Africa, where witch killings persist. According to a 2003 analysis by the Berkeley economist Edward Miguel, extreme rainfall — either too much or too little — coincides with a significant increase in the number of witch killings in Tanzania. The victim is typically the oldest woman in a household, killed by her own family. - livescience
The Salem Witch Trials: A Day-by-Day Chronicle of a Community Under Siege
Death in Salem: The Private Lives behind the 1692 Witch Hunt
Balanced Rock, or Rolling Rock, near Pittsfield, Massachusetts, is a mass of limestone that was deposited where it stands by the great continental glacier during the ice age, and it weighs four hundred and eighty tons (estimated) in spite of its centuries of weathering. Here one of the Atotarhos, kings of the Six Nations, had his camp. He was a fierce man, who ate and drank from bowls made of the skulls of enemies, and who, when he received messages and petitions, wreathed himself from head to foot with poison snakes. The son of this ferocious being inherited none of his war-like tendencies; indeed, the lad was almost feminine in appearance, and on succeeding to power he applied himself to the cultivation of peaceful arts. Later historians have uttered a suspicion that he was a natural son of Count Frontenac, but that does not suit with this legend.
The young Atotarho stood near Balanced Rock watching a number of big boys play duff. In this game one stone is placed upon another and the players, standing as far from it as they fancy they can throw, attempt to knock it out of place with other stones. The silence of Atotarho and his slender, girlish look called forth rude remarks from the boys, who did not know him, and who dared him to test his skill. The young chief came forward, and as he did so the jeers and laughter changed to cries of astonishment and fear, for at each step he grew in size until he towered above them, a giant. Then they knew him, and fell down in dread, but he took no revenge. Catching up great boulders he tossed them around as easily as if they had been beechnuts, and at last, lifting the balanced rock, he placed it lightly where it stands to-day, gave them a caution against ill manners and hasty judgments, and resumed his slender form. For many years after, the old men of the tribe repeated this story and its lesson from the top of Atotarho's duff. - Myths and Legends of Our Own Land (Dodo Press)
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