Monday, 18 May 2009

Poltergeists and Chocolate Puddings

Chocolate, she said, we need chocolate.

We were immersed in the spooky depths of a conversation about poltergeists and she wanted chocolate. Fair play, I thought, there's nothing better than a Friday night pig-out. Doctors, I believe, recommend it.

A friend of my wife has been experiencing bizarre and creepy things in her home. More recently the happenings suggest a poltergeist is having the time of its life. In actual fact my wife used to live in that same house. Her family also had their fair share of such experiences. I won't go into them in detail but here's an example. The house is a fully detached farmhouse, there are no immediate neighbours and at the time it had no piano. Often during the night they would hear a piano being played. If they went downstairs to investigate the music would stop.

Still discussing the poltergeist we made our way to the kitchen. Unfortunately we were out of chocolate but we did have some cocoa powder. My wife demanded that I make one of my specialities. Sticky chocolate puddings. We needed one, she said.

It is the simplest of recipes. Whack an egg, cocoa powder, butter, flour and sugar in a bowl, shove it in the microwave for 90 seconds with a plate over the top and a sticky spongy feast of goodness will fill the bowl. Let it cool for a minute, turn the bowl over, lift it up and a perfectly formed pudding will plop onto the plate.

Like I say, it is the simplest of recipes. But when poltergeists are being discussed anything can happen. I couldn't find the sugar. My wife remembered that we only had golden sugar. I rummaged through the cupboard, took the sugar jar down from the top shelf and we continued our conversation.

Recently in the farmhouse things have been going missing. Clothes, jewellery, books, ornaments. So what, you might be thinking. So what, I thought, any scatterbrained individual can lose a bunch of stuff. The other day my wife's friend was walking down the stairs. She was home alone. She heard footsteps behind her, slow stomping footsteps. She swung round and the footsteps stopped. There was a terrifying presence on the stairs.

She'd had enough. With great presence of mind she addressed the poltergeist. She demanded that it return all her things and then leave. Half an hour later she was walking past the stairs. On the bottom step were all her things. Clothes, jewellery, books and ornaments, all in a neat little pile.

I didn't know what to make of all this. Poltergeists pose all sorts of complex theological questions. Some people deny they exist. Tell that to a poltergeist and it will nick your stuff. For starters, what the hell are they? Demons? Human spirits trapped in this world? The disembodied souls of deranged hamsters? My febrile mind was in overload, painfully shunting thoughts around as if they were heavy boxes. I took the pudding out of the microwave. Something isn't right, observed my wife, inspecting the the damn thing. She picked up what I had assumed was the sugar jar.

That's couscous, she said. I had made a sticky chocolate pudding with couscous instead of sugar. It tasted rancid. I suspect we may have a mischievous poltergeist. It lives in the kitchen cupboard and switches the contents of jars around with a devil-may-care attitude.

Either that or men simply cannot multi-task.

52 comments:

jpooh said...

Chocolate cous cous? Hmmmm...that bears some consideration.

But the poltergeist does not. Unless his name is Peeves.

♥ Braja said...

I think the poltergeist's name is Nigella and she's just pissed you're such a hot cook...

Eric said...

Hope the friend in the farmhouse doesn't have a poltergeist of the 'stow-away' or 'squatter' variety!!! Choco-pasta, genius...

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

cous cous a chocolat?

actually, that might be a terrific base layer for poulet mole!

... are you sure she's not just quietly packing up her things so you aren't aware she's leaving?

just a thought, mate, just a thought

Me, Amplified said...

i don't think that it's a ghost. i think your neighbours have attached remote control car things to everything in your house and they move things around from the comfort of their living room. then they laugh maniacally.

Gaston Studio said...

Damn! I wish my daughter had thought to confront her poltergeist in Atlanta; she lost so many sets of car keys it's unbelievable!

I think it or one of them followed us to North Carolina because I'm missing my favorite pair of boot shoes and we hear slamming noises every now and then. Poltergeists can be a bit of fun or quite scary; hope your friends is of the former variety.

The Jules said...

Well, poltergeists are said to move more than one thing around at a time, which is effectively multi-tasking, so they're probably not blokes.

Kat said...

I totally believe in ghosts and that story made all the little hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

Scope said...

I blame that stuff on gnomes. Much less scary.

I meant the cooking disasters where is confuse "baking soda / baking powder" and "teaspoons / table spoons".

Call Me Cate said...

Oooh, great story. Because it didn't happen to me. But then I have my own issues with ghosties stealing things like chicken nuggets and cats and most recently my spatulas.

Comedy Goddess said...

That is very creepy! And so are the poltergeists.

Harmony said...

My son (Austin) swears we have ghost in our house. He is always seeing and hearing things..creeps me the eff out! And there are those occasions where out of the very corner of my eye I see someone moving and look to see who it is..and no one is there. But, they don't seem to be stealing anything so that is good.

Rancid chocolate pudding? It happens.

Snarky A. said...

Disembodied souls of deranged hamsters. Most definitely. Deranged hamsters with a wicked sense of humor. I bet he laughed his deranged ass hamster ass off about the whole chocolate couscous pudding!

blognut said...

I lean toward the belief that they might be souls trapped here for some reason - unfinished business or something like that.

Are they rearranging the cupboard at Stoneskin Manor? Nah. You just can't multi-task.

Sorry - truth hurts!

Minka said...

What did you do with the stuff? Tried it? Are you starting a recipe book already?

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

"The disembodied souls of deranged hamsters?" Yes. That has to be it.

Mr. Condescending said...

Maybe the poltergeist is a moroccan pudding peddler.

Kylie w Warszawie said...

Gotta be the hampsters. My grandparents had a bay house when I was a child and I swear it was haunted.

Nej said...

Well...at least it returned everything when she asked. Granted, it did put it all at the bottom of the stairs for her to trip over. :-)

Girl Interrupted said...

The bad news is ... I will not be sleeping tonight now :/ (cheers for that Mo)

The good news is ... at least I can make a bucket sized sticky chocolate pudding to keep myself happily occupied (yay)

Stacie's Madness said...

WOW!

Peggy said...

All you have to do is yell at them to give you your stuff back and they'll do it? Seems nice enough. Thanks goodness it's a "nice" poltergeist. You English are so very polite, even undead!

Great story! Would love to hear more of your wife's experiences...with the ghost that is!

Cora said...

My Aunt and Uncle lived in a haunted house in England years ago. My Aunt used to see a ghost of a soldier wandering down the hall, she swears it.

Anything is possible.

As for kitchen disasters, my mother once added salt to sweet and sour meatballs instead of sugar. UGH! I was dead thirsty for about two weeks straight! Blah!

Nikki-ann said...

LOL I suspect the latter! :D

C.B. Jones said...

Her threat sounds like it scared the mess out of the ghost. It must have been a weakling, like Casper.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom! said...

"Whack an egg, cocoa powder, butter, flour and sugar in a bowl, shove it in the microwave for 90 seconds with a plate over the top and a sticky spongy feast of goodness will fill the bowl."

Frick. Could you provide a few more (essential) details?

Sassy Britches said...

I can't believe you guys actually TRIED the pudding after you KNEW it had been made with couscous!

Remind me never to chat with you about important topics when food is involved!

Amy said...

That chocolate pudding thing sounds terrific. The spook returning the things after she yelled at it - well good to know it will listen, but very unsettling, no?

Samsmama said...

What a very polite poltergeist she has. She should try requesting songs she wants to hear on the piano. Just a thought.

lizspin said...

Agree with Cora. . . Anything is possible!

Hit 40 said...

Oh...

I believe in ghosts. My grandfather was with me a couple years after his death.

And...

My father in law did little things to make me mad like turning on alarm clocks in the middle of the night. I can not go back to sleep once I am up. Bastard!!

bernthis said...

and I thought living through an earthquake was scary

Vic said...

I love that all the missing stuff was returned. But only because it didn't happen to me.

I have no trouble believing in some kind of spirit world - I just don't know what they are either...

SweetPeaSurry said...

My grandmother once told me that when I was little I would have lenghthy discussions with 'dead people'. Essentially I would be having a one sided conversation, and she asked me who I was talking to, when I gave her the name, she nearly toppled over and fainted. It seems I had been speaking with a long dead great great great grandmother. YAY!! I think poltergeists are just mischevious old souls out for a little fun!

Cameron said...

Exorcism without the church involved..is that allowed? I hope she put a little extra in the collection plate this week.

Soda and Candy said...

Nothing ghosty has ever happened to me, not even when I stayed in a reputedly haunted hotel.

Captain Dumbass said...

Is that what happens to my effing remote?

the mama bird diaries said...

Oh my god. That would scare me to death. I'd move out immediately.

Twenty Four At Heart said...

The poltergeist wants chocolate pudding, I think that's very evident .....

g said...

Umm....how do you mistake couscous for sugar, even brown sugar?

although - with sugar, cocoa and couscous, it might be a fabulous pudding.

Perhaps that poltergeist should learn to cook.

Beth said...

I might suggest that one of my teachers has a poltergeist. She has lost so many things, including students.

Seriously, that was a creepy post!

~E said...

Ghosts of any kind scare the crap out of me.

Even reading the P word made my hair stand on end...and that's the darn truth.

Also, Im gonna be needing that pudding recipe please. In my email, comments, whatever.

CailinMarie said...

I found you again. delightful! and you make chocolate pudding! sort of. when the beastie ghost doesn't mess it all up...

Kristine said...

I love your stories!

But, I also hate all this ghost nonsense. Do you know what I'd do if I discovered ghost-like behavior in my house? If I didn't die instantly from utter terror, I'd grab my kids (forget the cats) and start running through the streets like a lunatic. And then they'd probably arrest me.

Bambi said...

Wow that pudding sounds good.... made with sugar of course. I love the supernatural- the good kind of course. Sounds like the one in her house isn't too bad, since he followed her demand of returning her things and placing them so neatly on the stairs. I mean, he could have put them all in the loo!!!

rubbish said...

Sounds like they have a portal from the afterlife probably coming in through the fridge. I've got a mate who can sort them out.

cactus petunia said...

You're right. Men are not very good at multitasking, but as long as they can make a good chocolate pudding, we'll keep them around.

And the poltergeists? I've been dealing with a ghost who likes to sit on the end of our bed at night, and I have to keep asking him/her to get off my feet, please!

San Diego Momma said...

NO WAY! You do know that I love spooky stories, right?

(Wait. Are you bullshitting me?)

Don't do that. I want to believe that the poltergeist returned your wife's things.

Also, remind me to tell you of the dark menacing shapes appearing in my bedroom sometime.

San Diego Momma said...

Also, I need sticky pudding ingredient measurement specifics, please.

Like, NOW.

Maria Roth said...

I believe in poltergeists. Thank God, we don't have any haunting my house. By "golden" sugar, you must mean "brown" sugar? The chocolate couscous sounds ghastly--definitely the work of a poltergeist. :)

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

Oh, fizzlepix. It was a pudding, not a SPONGE. But I do have to say that I got a good drunken giggle out of imagining you at the platform with chocolate pudding in your ear. :D

The Rambler said...

Cous cous.

Rascal poltergeist indeed.

As I have quite a few new readers since I became a "Jelly Biter" I've put this up here again. To understand the context you must read this post!