So you want to be a ghost hunter, like those guys on TV. Or like that married couple from the movies who investigated that doll or something. Whatever the inspiration, you’ve made an important career choice.
Here are four tips that will help you in your paranormal exploits.
1. Overreact to drafts.
There’s no easier way to prove your ghost hunting cred than to feel a cold breeze in the middle of a house and then freak the shit out about it. Just stop whatever you’re doing and stay frozen for at least five seconds. Don’t move, but desperately shift your eyes back and forth. This will all be caught on the night vision cameras, so the eye movements will look pretty cool.
When your partners ask you what’s wrong, say, “Guys! Guys! Do you feel that? Guys! Do you feel that?” Feel free to repeat your sentences as many times as you want. When it comes to slight drafts, it’s important to prolong the moment as much as possible.
Once you’re finished, and all of your partners have agreed that, yes, this old house has some suspiciously cold parts in it, check all the nearby windows to make sure they’re closed. Don’t mention anything about the poor insulation.
Bonus points, of course, if you can get your arm hair to stand on end. If so, show your forearm to everyone else in the room for added credibility.
2. Misinterpret noises.
Because you won’t capture any actual evidence of ghosts, it’s important to record as much white noise as possible, pick a random crackle in the audio, and then act like it sounds like an English phrase. “Get out” is a classic. As is “help.”
Sometimes, you can say that the noise sounds like a name. Be sure that you pick an old-fashioned name, like “Rebecca” or “Ernest.” It would be much less believable if you say that an old house is haunted by the ghost of “Jayden” or “Katniss.”
Once you’ve shared the white noise with everyone else, play it again a few times and declare that you have a strange feeling every time you hear it. That’s Ghost Hunting 101.
3. Pretend that you saw a movement, but the camera just missed it.
You’ll be spending a lot of time walking through a dark building shining your flashlight into corners. Obviously, there will be shadows. And if you’re lucky, the camera will pick up a random shadow that somehow looks human-shaped. It helps if the house is full of lamps and furniture.
Eventually, you’ll shine the light at the right angle, and the footage will be golden.
Every once in a while, though, you should make a grunt noise, spin around, and shine your light into a corner. When your partners ask you what happened, explain that you just saw a movement. They’ll freak out, you’ll freak out, and then together, you’ll check out the area for signs of something.
You won’t find anything, of course, but you’ve still made an impression on your audience.
4. Shout, “Did you feel that?!”
This is a really useful phrase. Variations also include “Did you see that?!” or “Did you hear that?!” Every few minutes that you’re ghost hunting, shout one of these phrases and wait for your partners to respond. When they ask what you felt/saw/heard, give them a vague answer, like, “I don’t know. But I think it’s angry.”
It’s always good to project feelings onto the spirits, like anger or sadness. Maybe they want your help. Maybe they want you to get out. Whatever it is, pull some conjecture out of your ass and hope that your ghost hunting partners improvise with you.
When finished, go back to exploring and repeat each step once more. Do this enough times, and you should be ready for your own TV show.