There’s no such thing as ghosts, of course—it always turns out to be the janitor, or the lighthouse keeper, or whoever else has a motive to scare people and access to a fog machine and some spooooky lighting. (Talking dogs who smoke weed, of course, are totally normal.) Still, a lot of people claim to have seen ghosts—especially in Brooklyn, because people in Brooklyn will believe any goddam thing they want to as long as it sounds quirky enough. We went around and asked some Brooklynites (you tell us how many are actually from Brooklyn) if they had ever felt the presence of spirits.
Grace: I’ve never seen a ghost, but I’ve definitely sensed evil.
What do you mean?
I’ve just—I don’t know if I’m sensitive, because I’m in the arts, but I’ve just sensed—you just get this feeling with people.
What do you do when you sense evil?
Lately, I’ve just been doing this thing where I have my headphones in all the time. But I usually just try to protect myself, make sure I’m surrounded by other people who look good.
Do you know anyone who has seen a ghost?
Yeah, my boyfriend’s seen a ghost. He used to live in a haunted house when he lived in Chicago.
Left to right: Kelsey, Kelly, Liza
Liza: Yes. I saw a man sitting in my mother’s living room in historic downtown Wilmington, North Carolina. I walked into our living room with this lady [Kelly]. And then I was like, “Who’s this guy sitting in our living room?” And he was gone, and then I was like, “My house is old!”
Iris: Oh God! This is such a bad time for an interview.
Who did you see?
Anthony: One time I saw an angel and one time I saw a bartender.
An angel and a bartender? Are you Catholic, by any chance?
Anthony: Not an all. I wouldn’t say I’m not a religious man, but I don’t subscribe to anything. But I’ve eaten enough acid in my time to know there’s ghosts.
Left to right: Bill, Sharon, Billy, Allison
Allison: Yeah. 'Cause something’s got to explain some creepy shit.
Billy: I saw what looked like a friend of mine who was still alive and standing about a hundred feet away from me. It was glowing and weird and looked gnarly. It was in this weird spot in my neighborhood between my house and his house. After I saw that, me and him would always feel this weird energy and would see this black thing following us through this area.
Helen: No. But it’s a romantic idea.
Why is seeing a ghost a romantic idea?
It’s a nice nostalgic feeling to think about the past coming to visit us in the present.
That’s pretty smart, actually.
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