Tuesday, 12 February 2013

A Skeptic on a Ghost Hunt

Sometimes, as skeptics, it is really easy to get bored with those same old “woo woo” topics that have been done to death again and again. And it is so easy to dismiss claims and experiences off the cuff because, dammit, we know these things have been investigated before. Ghost hunting is one of those topics where the techniques have been talked about and exposed and, dare I say, debunked time and time again. And yet, they are still so popular in the mainstream. Why? I decided it was about time to find out with a first hand experience into the dark and spooky world of the ghost hunt.
Okay, really? The opportunity presented itself while I was doing something completely different, so I figured, why not? I was at a small local sci-fi and fantasy convention some months ago where I had been asked to speak about astronomy and skepticism. While browsing some of the fan tables, I noticed that there were several local ghost-hunting groups in attendance. Even better, they were planning a ghost hunting experience right there at the Con for free! How could I NOT sign up?
Late that night, my ever-faithful boyfriend and I came back to the conference center for our spooky experience. Tim is, may I say, quite a good sport. He lets me drag him around to all sorts of crazy events related to science and skepticism and now this ghost hunt. Thought he would never self-identify as a “skeptic,” he didn’t exactly expect to make contact with the other side and probably thought I was silly for wanting to do this. I, however, was damn determined to treat this like a mini-science project and observe all that I could about the experience. If any ghosties wanted to make themselves known, now was the time with a skeptic in the room!