We had an enthusiastic crowd Friday night for my first show and first concluding seance at the Art Church of West Philadelphia. The Ouija board was personed by audience volunteers JOE and JOHN and the planchette was zooming about urgently. We spoke to a M A N who was 5 0 and A R M E N I A N who told us he did not speak or write English well. His name was L A M E K (Lamech? A Hebrew surname; were we talking to an Armenian Jew?).
Kolkata’s Armenian Ghat, a former loading dock along the banks of the Hooghly built long ago by Armenian merchants, is mentioned in the show, and after the Ouija board spelled the word Armenian an audience member, someone who was not touching the board, spoke up and self-identified as Armenian).
I asked Mr. Lamek if he knew anyone in the audience and he spelled J O E. When asked if he had a message for Joe it spelled out L A L A L A L A over and over. This oblique response has happened to me twice before (in 2011 during my previous show Beautiful Zion: A Book of the Dead and in 2012 during a midnight seance on the stage of Philadelphia’s historic Plays & Players Theatre) and my belief is that it means the spirit doesn’t want to answer the question, or isn’t allowed to answer it. It’s a singsong nonresponse which is usually given when more profound questions are asked, like “where are you now?” or “are you a spirit?” or “why are you still here?’)
I then took a few steps away to crank up the P-SB7 “spirit box” and then went back to stand next to the Ouija board. When I asked Lamek if he was in the room with us the board moved to YES. I then held out my hand at my right side and asked if he was near my hand or on the opposite side of me. The board spelled L E F T while at the same time (see below) the spirit box answered in agreement, “On the opposite.” I then put down my right and held up my left hand, to which the spirit box responded “Perfect.”
When I asked Lamek if he had any parting wisdom for us the board spelled out M A H A L O.
“That means thank you!” shouted an audience member.
“In Armenian?” I asked hopefully.
Here’s the ghost box audio recorded with my video camera. The image is just a blurry closeup of the spirit box speaker. The raw footage runs 6 minutes, 34 seconds. Here are the most audible highlights and my interpretations of the EVPs. As is my usual practice I’ve slowed them down, boosted the volume and added noise reduction. If anyone would like a copy of the raw, unadulterated footage I’m happy to share it, just post a request below.
ME: Would you like to speak with us? Can you say hello to us?
Can you say hello to Joe?
(I had asked a few moments before this, “What did you think of the show?” so perhaps this is a critique of the 3 songs I perform. How dare she!)
Are you in the room with us now? Where are you in relation to my hand? On my left or my right?
(As explained above I was standing by the Ouija board at this moment. It answered YES to the first question so I held up my right hand. The board spelled L E F T at the same time the EVP was telling us the following response:)
ON THE OPPOSITE…PERFECT.
(to my knowledge there was no on in the audience with this name; perhaps the spirit is identifying itself or calling out to a long-lost love, especially given the final phrase–)
HEART AND SOUL.