Monday, November 23, 2015

Classes on the Dead

 One of my favorite things is paging through the continuing education offerings at our local community colleges and finding that they are offering a class about the paranormal. I think I mentioned that last year, I hauled Jim off to a two-part class taught by local (supernatural) Chicago historian, Ursula Bielski. She has a couple of books out if you want to know more about her: she wrote Chicago Haunts, More Chicago Haunts, and co-authored Graveyards of Chicago. Obviously, the woman and I have a lot in common. 

Just this past month, I signed up for a three-part class entitled "Ghosts and Spirit Entities," being presented at a nearby community college. I missed the first class because Jim and I were in Charleston -although we made up for it by taking a ghost tour- but I did attend the second and third classes. 

I kinda wished I had missed the second class instead of the first. Since our instructor, ghost hunter Mary Marshall, was talking about more than just ghosts, class two did quite a bit about demons and exorcisms. For me, that's the equivalent of saying "I don't think we're in Kansas anymore, Toto." I think I've mentioned, probably ad nauseum, that my preferred area of paranormal study is ghosts. Finito. Demons, possessions, and those kinds of stories fall outside my preferred comfort zone. Like by about three hundred light years. And I could never say that our instructor didn't come to class prepared to share information. She proceeded to share actual videos of the exorcisms in two particular case studies, neither of which had a happy ending, and I found myself thinking, "Where are Dean and Sam Winchester when I need them?"

The ghost stuff, however, was fun. She brought along EVP recordings and that is always interesting. She also talked about investigating and equipment and brain waves and basic physics (energy can neither be created nor destroyed) so that was informative.

She and I also swapped business cards, although I doubt I'll be doing any ghost hunting with her anytime in the near future. I don't do ghost hunts because I am, as previously noted, A COWARD. I deal with things in my own house and for me, that's plenty.

Still, the schedule for the upcoming semester at one of the colleges arrived in my mailbox the other day and of course I found myself perusing the paranormal offerings. This spring, that same instructor is offering a course on paranormal investigation complete with how to use ghost-hunting equipment, and a field trip. Hmmm.  I wonder when the conversational Spanish class is being offered?

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