Friday, December 4, 2020

Ghostless: Secret Subject Swap


Secret Subject Swap, a multi-blogger writing challenge | developed and run by | #MyGraphics

Welcome a Secret Subject Swap. This month 6 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. Read through mine and at the bottom you’ll find links to all of today’s other Secret Subject participants.




My subject is: Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever seen one? Or if not, tell us a fun ghost story.
It was submitted by: Jenniy of Climaxed.

This prompt had me headed to the way-back machine. Sorry, you young 'uns who don't know what I'm talking about, think Back to the Future or Hot Tub Time Machine, but just for looking, not for changing anything. Did that help? 

Anyway, I wrote a couple of posts in the past, not about ghosts per se, but along those lines. The first one was called Janet Knows, written in 2013 and it actually started out as a reaction to a television show about a medium. I was quite skeptical about the medium, but about the whole idea of ghosts, I was more on the fence. I had, after all, seen signs. You should read that post btw, it's sweet. 

The second post I went to find was one I wrote in 2016 about my stepfather, called A Smile and a Wink. It's similar to the other post in nature (and I recommend you read this one too), about signs.

My conclusion was not so much about whether I believe in the physical manifestation of ghosts, I really don't. It's more tied to the Jewish tradition of naming our children after the dead. 

Hmm, that sounds kinda creepy, but it's not, it's an honor. I believe we keep people alive, not physically of course, but in our lives and in our thoughts, in many ways, one of which is through their names. When the boys were little, I'd tell stories of the people they were named after whenever they asked about their names. To me, it felt like I was introducing them to people who'd had meaning in my life, but who they would never actually be able to meet.

I also believe that these people have a place, and even a purpose in my everyday life. Whether these signs of them is something I'm responsible for, or something these cherished friends and family members I'd lost are doing from beyond, remains unknown. And I think I like that.

But I've never actually seen a ghost, not with my own admittedly analytical eyes. Possibly it's because it seems absurd to me that dead people wander around among us, walking through walls, unable to "move on," or angry because we're living in their house, or just plain finding joy in scaring the bejeezus out of us. Maybe it's because I'm not open to it, too controlled and rational, too quick to reason rather than believe. 

Yet . . . 

I was making dinner just a few months ago, right around Halloween time, and while I was cooking, a friend stopped by. 

Crockpot Tortellini Casserole is a quick to assemble versatile meal. Frozen tortellini are layered with vegetables and sauce. Choose meatless or add meat, this casserole can also be baked in the oven. | Recipe developed by | #recipe #dinner

Crockpot Tortellini Casserole
Crockpot Tortellini Casserole is a quick to assemble versatile meal. Frozen tortellini are layered with vegetables and sauce. Choose meatless or add meat, this casserole can also be baked in the oven. | Recipe developed by | #recipe #dinner

We started talking about visiting Halloween haunted house attractions, which I love, when she asked me a question. She'd seen a post on FB about what was supposed to be one of the most haunted places in the country. An abandoned asylum or house or castle or something. The person who'd posted the picture did so with a question: would you go in here? So, my friend wanted to know, would I?

With all I've said in this post, you'd think I'd say "yes." After all, I've never actually seen a ghost, I am more than a little skeptical of mediums, and believe that there's a difference between signs from loved ones and actual . . . you know . . . ectoplasm.

My answer, though, once I thought about it, was this: yes I'd go in, but only in the daytime, and not alone.

So . . . the long and the short of it is a wishy washy "yes and no" in response to that question Jenniy asked me about whether I believe in ghosts. She did give me an option to answering it, though. Would you rather I'd have told you a fun ghost story? 

Sorry, my bad. 

Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts. Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:

Baking In A Tornado signature | | #MyGraphics

Crockpot Tortellini Casserole

NOTE: I make this dish meatless, but have added a meat option for those who want it. 
You can also bake it in a casserole dish in the oven, covered, at 375 for an hour.

1 bag (36 oz) frozen cheese tortellini 
1 cup mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed and sliced
1/2 cup chopped red (or green) pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion 
2 cups fresh spinach
3 cups marinara sauce (I use my Homemade Marinara)
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

OPT: 2 Italian sausages or 1 cup ham, cooked and chopped

*Spray the bowl of your slow cooker with non-stick spray. Turn the crockpot on to low.
*Spoon 1 cup of marinara sauce into the bottom of the slow cooker. Top with 1/2 of the tortellini, 1/2 cup of mushrooms, 1/4 cup of peppers, 1/4 cup of onion, 1 cup of spinach, and one of the chopped meat, if using. 
*Repeat all of the layers. Top with the last cup of marinara and the shredded cheese.
*Cook on low for 5 hours.



  1. This is such an interesting question and topic. Have you read Jean-Paul Sartre "les Jeux sont faits"?
    Two people fall in love in the afterlife. They claim they should have met while alive. They get one chance to go back to life and meet. Interesting fact: dead people can mingle among the living, but cannot be seen or heard.

    So who knows...?

    Happy Friday!

  2. Well, there was the time I stayed in a haunted room in a B&B and didn't know until the last night, when I read the comment book in the nightstand drawer. Nope, never saw (or felt) this ghost, who was supposed to go around holding the hands of guests as they slept...kind of creepy, just thinking of it. And I enjoy visiting historic cemeteries but have never taken a ghost tour of one. Alana

    1. I've enjoyed visiting the historic cemeteries in Boston. Never ran into any ghosts there, at least not that I know of.

  3. I've visited a couple of places that are supposed to be haunted. Never saw or felt anything.

  4. We named all of our children (actually, I named them because...Husby's names...) after family members. And they are so pleased to be able to say, "I was named after..." Totally fun!
    Have I seen a ghost? Definitely! I could have only been 4. An early 4. But I remember it sooo clearly!
    Going over to read the other stories now...

    1. I certainly think it's possible, but wow, four is very young.

  5. You know that has always been my problem. Even when it comes to religion I've always been skeptical, analytical and scientific so to me it's all a big make believe stories. It drove my mom crazy! It's funny though, I still sometimes pray just in the off chance that I'm wrong. We were taught to believe in reality. We were never told our presents came from Santa. They came from dad who worked his ass off to get it and you better damn well appreciate it haha!

    1. You sound a lot like me, not an active believer but there's a little corner of our minds that acknowledge that we can't know that it's not true either.

  6. He he ghost stories! how fun. I find the idea of Mediums to be fascinating and I tend to lean towards novels with them, because their is something surreal about them.

  7. Agreed. There may not be ghosts, but there are odd things that happen, and i'd rather it be daylight and other people around if it did happen.


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