Folklore Musings: The Loch Ness Monster & Bermuda Triangle

The Loch Ness Monster388982_3377538558968_401329802_n

Embedded within the Highlands of Scotland lies Loch Ness, an abyssal freshwater lake that has gained widespread notoriety due to its most reclusive inhabitant, Nessie. The “Loch Ness Monster.”

Perhaps the most integral question raised in the previous paragraph is, were it not for that damned salty lake in Utah, would writers get to bypass the silly requirement of specifying “freshwater” when referencing lakes in articles?

I suppose if there’s one salt lake, there must be another. But if there isn’t, that dumb condiment bog is creating a lot of extra work. But I digress.

Now, as this is a blog post and not a novel we’ll skip ahead hundreds of years and begin this speculation in the 20th Century.

Eye Witness Accounts

Some accounts dating back to the 1930’s had various people supposedly encountering an amphibious creature both in and out of the loch’s water.

These versions vary from the improbable-sounding to the ludicrously outlandish. Sure, perhaps the latter was somewhat hyperbolic. But it sounds good and I’ve never had the opportunity to use ludicrously outlandish in a sentence before.

At any rate as the saying goes, pictures, or it didn’t happen. Speaking of which, what a perfect segue.

Fake Photographs

An assortment of photos spanning decades have purported to depict Nessie. However, through various means many of these pictures were ultimately revealed to be fake.

But the truth is that every photograph was an authentic photo; it was merely the depicted content of some that turned out to be shams. And while in context that is an unnecessary and meaningless distinction, explaining the difference was exceedingly crucial in swelling the word count of this article.

The Loch Ness Monster Itself

If Nessie does exist, he’s/she’s kind of lame for a so-called “monster.” While you can reasonably expect monsters to maintain some semblance of seclusion, sooner or later the job description obliges them to come out and scare folks. Not play hide-and-seek over the course of a millennium.

Yet this one never does. Not even to the requisite group of annoying campers who goof-off during the day, and then pair up at night to fornicate in abandoned cabins. Per the countless reels of celluloid devoted to this, you’d almost think that’s a requirement.

It’s no wonder there are so few horror flicks made featuring this bloke. For God’s sake, at one point somebody even swam the entire lake at once without so much as a glimpse of a nefarious fin. Or tail. Or anything. That’s just plain laziness, Nessie.

Nessie’s Greatest Impact

Nevertheless, while the ol’ leviathan rarely puts in a public appearance, it doesn’t mean his impact isn’t still felt across the globe.

Nessie and his theorized likeness have been godsends for both the local tourism industry, and companies producing tee shirts and bric-a-brac. Whether he exists is irrelevant, because the dough he rakes in certainly does.

In fact, while he may appear to some as a seal, fish or Plesiosaur, in reality what he resembles most is a Cash Cow.

And don’t forget his American cousin Champ in Vermont’s Lake Champlain, who’s been evading cameras while filling coffers himself for decades.

So to all of you budding knick-knack entrepreneurs, remember: you don’t really need an actual dinosaur to prosper with a roadside stand. Just a lake and a legend.

The Bermuda Triangle

The Bermuda Triangle has long been a subject of great interest for many. Is it real? Does it exist? Well, sure. Miami, San Juan and Bermuda are three relatively equidistant points which together form a triangle. That’s no mystery, it’s just simple geometry.

Unfortunately, that’s the easy part.

For decades believers in Triangle lore have considered it to be some kind of Roach Motel, where transport vehicles check in, but they don’t check out.

However the reality is that if the amount of traffic it receives is taken into consideration, there’s not much difference between the Bermuda Triangle and the less famous Acapulco Misplaced Sock Trapezoid; an area of Acapulco Bay in which, legend has it, millions of missing socks lost in dryers the world over are hiding out.

While there’s never been any real proof of anything abnormal or supernatural regarding the Triangle, there is one interesting hypothesis that’s tough to laugh off, and it’s put forth by those who think  the fabled lost continent of Atlantis lies somewhere beneath the Triangle’s enigmatic waves.

If that’s true, then perhaps there are beautiful mermaids and cold beverages down there, too. In that instance I’m not too sure I’d want to go home, either.

The truth is that tales like this can be very beneficial. For instance they created shows like In Search Of…; thereby giving Leonard Nimoy something to appear in between television Star Trek, and motion pictures Star Trek, that didn’t require a bowl cut and applied prosthetics.

Besides, what would the world be without a little cool speculative fun to ponder every now and again?

*     *     *     *

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

‘The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm’ by Chris Gay

The Bachelor Cookbook is the perfect (and likely only) addition to any guy’s collection of sarcastic culinary literature. If you’re between relationships and looking to make the most of whatever foodstuffs you’ve got until you meet that next special woman, then your prayers have been answered. Unless you’re an atheist; in which case coming across this book just means your luck was in today. For men looking for sustenance over style, I give you this spectacular cookbook. Well, I don’t “give it” to you, per se. You have to pay for it.

Featuring such taste-bud tempting recipes as:

Popcorn Salad

Meat on a Bed of Rice

Cheese and Crackers

Spaghetti Sandwich

Plus Miscellaneous Cookbook Humor, too!

Click the book poster below to visit my website’s online bookstore:

1977287_10152267078273756_2109539589_n

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s also written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, the novella Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective) Santa Claus: Kris Kringle From Man to Myth, a unique, realistic take of a classic tale, and several humor books:Something Witty this Way Comes, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm and Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and is currently writing the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. Chris has written and voiced radio commercials, authored comedic, non-comedic and sports freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com.

Facebook

Twitter: @chrisgay13

Movies:

2012: Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009: Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

The Big Business of Ghost Busting

 

There’s a huge uptick in interest regarding both ghost hunting and ghost haunting these days. 388982_3377538558968_401329802_nIn fact, according to the entirely fabricated Bureau of Fictitious Statistics, nearly one in every two television shows are devoted, or in some way connected, to the post-life life.

The difficulty for the public, of course, is determining which shows’ casts, “psychic mediums” and “haunted business” owners are legitimate, (or at least believe themselves to be) and which are as sincere as a politician’s outrage.

Things that Go ‘Cha-Ching!’ In the Night

It’s hard for a layman, or anyone, really, to distinguish which perceived phenomenon is real, which is unknown or misunderstood science, and which is simply an overactive imagination.

However, it’s not hard to imagine some business owners being unaware of the untapped potential publicity and profits that might come their way, should the rumor of a haunting in the edifice housing their various saloons and eateries spread.

But to give them the benefit of the doubt, is it really necessary for these owners-who are mere proprietors untrained in matters of the occult-to speculate on odd occurrences?

I mean, how are they really to discern if a glass of beer spills due to gravity or faulty craftsmanship, or if an 1880’s temperance advocate was blowing off a little steam in the 21st Century?

Instead it’s much better for them to call the producers of a highly-rated cable show and ask if they wouldn’t mind investigating; to make sure. You know, not for a piece of the action; just peace of mind.

One Psychic Medium, Hold the Theatrics

As far as Great Unknowns go, the Afterlife is the reigning king. It’s the largest question mark of our existence.

And while everyone has different interests, it’s probably safe to assume that if given the chance at an honest reply, the one query we’d all ask the world over is: What happens next? (Although we’d skip the italics)

Well, thank G- okay; thank whomever you may believe in (if applicable) that there are people who can answer that question.

You’ve heard of psychic mediums. And surely you’ve seen many of them on TV helping others out of the goodness of their hearts. Any ancillary promotional benefits or book sales they may receive are grudgingly tolerated merely as part of the cost of assisting mankind.

Unfortunately, that’s not how some skeptics see it. And the jealousy born of that skepticism rears its ugly head in the form of these non-believers spreading sordid tales of unbridled chicanery.

They introduce deceptive terms like “Cold Readings” and speak of “mic’d up audience seats,” as if the Gifted Ones would ever resort to such disreputable tactics.

However, to be fair, I will say that some of their results are beyond me. Who would’ve thought that so many spirits would fight their way back from the Great Beyond to enlist the aid of a psychic standing two feet from a loved one; and then choose that specific moment to start playing word games with them?

You see I can’t help but wonder why on these shows, whenever “Uncle Joe” makes a cameo from the Hereafter, he just doesn’t simply say “Hi. Tell Mary it’s me, her Uncle Joe. Thanks for your help.”

Instead the medium usually seems to state things to his or her client like:

“Have you ever had a male family member who has passed on? Yes? Okay, well I’m sensing he’s here now, and that his name starts with either a consonant or a vowel. I’m also sensing he may be your brother, father, husband uncle, cousin, second cousin or third cousin twice-removed. Wait, now he’s saying that in life he enjoyed making love to women and quaffing occasional beers. Does this sound like any man you might know, Mary?”

I also wonder why, to my knowledge, not a single one of them has ever asked while on camera of a visiting spirit: “Hey, wait! Before you go, Joe-like, is there a God?” It just seems like such an opportune time to ask such an obvious question.

But what do I know?

My Experiences

I myself have lived in a couple places where the unexplained has occurred. In fact one time many years ago my mom called in a pair of very well-known names in the field of parapsychology to check out our house. Which they, and later their assistants, did.

Now I hadn’t seen anything there first-hand, but I did see a thing or two after the fact that had piqued my interest in their findings. They themselves visited only once, but on that day the performance of medium-half of this team as we all walked the cellar together was a sight to behold.

Before they came I was unsure if we’d had any ghosts, or if they even existed at all. But by the time they’d finished they almost had me convinced that not only were there ghosts there, but enough to consider asking them for rent.

See, that’s the thing. On the one hand we want answers, but on the other we know many charlatans are out there looking to make a buck off our curiosities and bereavements.

Too be honest I’m of the opinion that there are indeed a few authentic psychics here and there looking to do good for people; but I also think they’re overshadowed by many who aren’t.

And I don’t mean the $5 county-fair palm readers, I speak of those who happily profit from inconsolable people by claiming a “gift” they know full well that they don’t have. They’re unconscionable, those morals-bereft swindlers.

The TV People

Those famous guys and gals all over cable TV who run from city to city with Radio Shack’s latest hardware in tow are a different story, however. You know going in that it’s merely entertainment, and as such sometimes you’re happy and willing to suspend disbelief in exchange for a few laughs and a night on the couch with a bowl of popcorn.

Also, it can be funny to see how far they’ll go to try and turn a century-old creaking floorboard into Satan himself.

Just once though I’d like to see them do a live show during which Casper or Sam Wheat actually shows up at 3a.m. to be interviewed. But I digress.

In Conclusion

Over the past several years I’ve seen a couple of things in my home that have given me pause, along with a few Kodak moments that have produced goosebumps rather than memories. But it’s difficult not to try and think of rational, scientific explanations for things. Even when there doesn’t seem to be any.

There are millions who’ve claimed to see ghosts or ghostly phenomenon but, even with all of this new technology it’s still been difficult to produce anything concrete. And that’s without even addressing how many ordinary people can now produce full length-movies, including effects, on their smartphones and laptops.

One thing is certain, though. As long as this Great Unknown remains just that, there will be folks trying to convince us something beyond exists. And for the most part, who cares? That’s cool.

Their shows are often entertaining, and we can always console ourselves in the knowledge that sooner or later we’re all going to find out the answer, anyway.

*     *     *     *

God. The Devil. The Bet. The Fate of Mankind in the Balance. Check out Chris Gay’s new theological, paranormal crime thriller, Ghost of a Chance.

What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.

*     *     *     *

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal’ by Chris Gay

As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.

Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.

*     *     *     *

‘The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm’ by Chris Gay

The Bachelor Cookbook is the perfect (and likely only) addition to any guy’s collection of sarcastic culinary literature. If you’re between relationships and looking to make the most of whatever foodstuffs you’ve got until you meet that next special woman, then your prayers have been answered. Unless you’re an atheist; in which case coming across this book just means your luck was in today. For men looking for sustenance over style, I give you this spectacular cookbook. Well, I don’t “give it” to you, per se. You have to pay for it.

Featuring such taste-bud tempting recipes as:

Popcorn Salad

Meat on a Bed of Rice

Cheese and Crackers

Spaghetti Sandwich

Plus Miscellaneous Cookbook Humor, too!

Click the book poster below to visit my website’s online bookstore:

1977287_10152267078273756_2109539589_n

Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. He writes and broadcasts a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s also written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, the novella Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective) Santa Claus: Kris Kringle From Man to Myth, a unique, realistic take of a classic tale, and several humor books:Something Witty this Way Comes, And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm and Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and is currently writing the Ghost of a Chance sequel Perdition’s Wrath. Chris has written and voiced radio commercials, authored comedic, non-comedic and sports freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com.

Facebook

Twitter: @chrisgay13

Movies:

2012: Hope Springs (Barfly)

2009: Testimonies of a Quiet New England Town (Constable John Gilbert)

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