ABOUT ANNE FRASIER

Anne Frasier (a.k.a. Theresa Weir) is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling and award-winning author of thirty books. Her memoir, The Orchard, was an Oprah Magazine Fall Pick, Number Two on the October Indie Next List, a B+ featured title in Entertainment Weekly, a One Book One Community Read, Target Book Club Pick, and Books-A-Million Book Club Pick.


Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Halloween!


(I tell this story every Halloween.)


from Wikipedia:

The word "doppelgänger" has come to refer (as in German) to any double or look-alike of a person. The word is also used to describe the sensation of having glimpsed oneself in peripheral vision, in a position where there is no chance that it could have been a reflection. They are generally regarded as harbingers of bad luck. In some traditions, a doppelgänger seen by a person's friends or relatives portends illness or danger, while seeing one's own doppelgänger is an omen of death. In Norse mythology, a vardøger is a ghostly double who precedes a living person and is seen performing their actions in advance.



My Brother's Doppelganger

When I was fourteen and my younger brother was eight, we lived in an isolated desert town in southern New Mexico. My brother stood out in the largely Hispanic community because he had straight white hair and pale skin.

Enter Halloween.

My brother was going as a vampire. He and my mother were in the bathroom where she was putting on his makeup. I stood watching in the doorway. We were chatting and laughing. Someone knocks at the front door.

I leave the bathroom, go approximately ten steps, turn on the porch light and open the door, expecting an early trick-or-treater. There is my brother, standing at the bottom of the steps dressed in his black cape. No bag in his hands. Nothing on his head. His white hair. No cars around. No people. No trick-or-treaters.

He looks terrified.

My mind is struggling with the impossible logistics of the situation. I’d been looking at him in the bathroom when I heard the knock. I ask how he got outside. Terror in his eyes. I ask, What's wrong? He runs beyond the circle of the porch light, into the dark where he seems to vanish. I rush those few steps to the bathroom to tell my mom. To find out how they pulled off such a trick. There they both are, just as I left them.

This is a very small, one story house. less than 1,000 square feet. The bathroom is just a few paces from the front door. It has a window above the tub, but it’s one of those high, crank-out things, almost to the ceiling, and very small. If my mother had been able to stuff my brother through the window, he would have dropped six feet on the other side, then he would have had to run around the house to get to the front door. Then he would have had to run back, somehow scale the wall, squeeze through the tiny window, and return to makeup position in the middle of the bathroom. A trick that a rehearsed team could have possibly accomplished in five or ten minutes, but certainly not the seconds I’m talking about.

Over the years I’ve replayed the event in my mind hundreds of times, but have never been able to come up with a logical explanation. I've asked my brother if it was a trick, but he always gives me the same puzzled and confused look he and my mother gave me that night. I’m the only one who saw my brother’s doppelganger.

14 comments:

  1. Well that's creepy, Anne. Was there ever an event afterwards? I am assuming (hoping) that your brother is well and happy.

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  2. Kim, no events afterward, although I kept expecting to see the doppelganger again. never did. not sure if that was a relief or a disappointment. :D

    anne

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  3. Good One! LOVE real stories that can't be explained. At least by common logic.

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  4. Em-Musing, it's the only kind of paranormal thing that's ever happened to me. And all these years later I'm still obsessed with it.

    Anne

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  5. Shivery. Definitely.

    I've been in cemeteries in the middle of the night, modern and forgotten, and other creepy places intentionally. I haven't been so lucky as to see something that defies all explanation!

    I hope that creature never switched places with your brother. Was that one of their purposes?

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  6. jason, now that you mention it, my brother did seem a little different after that night...

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  7. And now for something completely different...I'm not a Twit(terer), but noticed your problem with mice in your car. My in-laws had a similar problem with mice and chipmunks and they used mothballs--vehicle smelled like hell but it seemed to work. Maybe some in your trunk or under the hood would do the trick (or treat)...couldn't resist.

    Happy Halloween
    Margaret

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  8. Margaret, I've heard that works, but I'm afraid to use mothballs since they discovered the fumes are toxic. But I'm so tempted!! I put about 20 dryer sheets in the car today, so we'll see what happens tonight. I've caught about 10 mice so far! ick!! They are peeing and pooping everywhere, and they've put acorns in door panels, truck liner, behind dashboard, and liner above my head. I can hear them roll when I turn corners.

    This is a Toyota with 10K miles on it!!

    anne

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  9. TRUNK liner. I open trunk, and acorns drop out.

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  10. Hmm, toxic, my in-laws will be happy to hear that. They were desperate as the mice chewed through some wiring and they ended up with a $700 repair bill. Perhaps just placing a few around or under your car would be enough to keep them away.

    I know it's not funny but the visual of you opening your trunk and being showered with acrons is too much.

    Good luck and I hope the dryer sheets work.
    Margaret

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  11. A $700 repair bill. Yikes! that's what I'm afraid of. Excellent idea to put mothballs around and under the car. I will be purchasing some tomorrow!

    anne

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  12. oh, and yes, it IS funny. the sound of the acorns rolling around when I turn corners is funny too. :D

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  13. mothballs: I wonder if I could just put mothballs in container and remove them whenever I get in car. Would the car have toxic fumes in it once mothballs are removed?

    Anne

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  14. I was curious about the toxic mothballs so I Googled a bit and I think the answer is yes, it would take some time for the fumes to dissipate. Perhaps driving with all windows down at 50mph would help. :D

    Hopefully you'd only have to use the mothballs a couple of times for them to get the hint. Have you talked to an exterminator, they might be able to give you some advice.

    Margaret

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