If you’ve ever visited a haunted house, you probably think you have a good idea of what ghosts are and what they're capable of. If this is the case, you're in for a rude awakening, because brother: Real-life ghostings have as much in common with carnival ghost houses as a composition book full of beastiality drawings has with a slightly newer composition book of a different color whose pages are not yet defiled with beastiality drawings. Which is to say: Not much.

So prepare to be scared senseless. Yes, even the most skeptical of skeptics will be chilled to the bone by the "scare-raising" scientific facts and scenarios contained herein. Oh, and before we begin, here's a word of advice: To get the full effect of this article, you should probably turn on some spooky-time ghost-time music to play in the background. I recommend using either one of those Halloween sound-effects tapes or the soundtrack to the smash-hit Shaquille O'Neil vehicle Kazaam. And lest you believe that's just some lame "kooky" ironic random pop-culture reference to a garbage movie: It isn't! The truth is that the idea of listening to Shaquille O’ Neil do some genie-based rapping never ceases to give me chills. You know, like...ghosts!

Swoosht! Basketball rim net jam! Game, set, and match. Now let's do this thing. 

Ghost Defined
Webster’s dictionary probably defines a “ghost” as a frightening thing wearing a white sheet and going "wooo!". While this definition might be alright for children and the elderly, the rest of us need something more. So I will define a ghost as:

Any dead person who climbs out of his grave and wanders around harassing people for (usually) no good reason. Oh, and also ghosts are translucent (you can see through them).

If anyone takes issue with my definition you can certainly write in with your own. I will publish it here and tell you why you are wrong. It is not commonly known, but ghosts are actually made out of what is called “Dark Matter”. You may have heard that this is also the material which makes up most stars, including Quasars, Pulsars, & Red Dwarves.

Dark Matter is also impervious to the pull of black holes, does not reflect light, and when orbiting a planet it can reach speeds of up to 1300 Light Years per second. Also in case you couldn’t tell, I just made all that crap up. Thank you.

Ghastly Abilities
A lot of times you’ll watch a movie with ghosts in it, and they will make all these supposedly “scary” things happen with their powers. But in real life where there are no fast cuts, spooky music, and creepy lighting, these things are not scary, they are annoying. Here are the powers a lot of dumb old ghosts will use to bother you:

  • Walk Through Walls – Yeah, ghosts can walk through walls. They have no concept of how walls work, so don’t try to play racquetball with a ghost. You will say “Hey ghost, just hit the ball against the wall so it comes to me” and the ghost will just go “Huuuh?” and shrug his shoulders. Also, if you see a ghost who refuses to wait in line for a film, at the bank, or at the drive-thru, you will know not to get all worked up: He doesn’t know any better.

  • Mess Up Electronics – You probably saw a lot of this power in the movie Poltergeist. Sometimes ghosts like to mess with people by making their TV change channels or go static-y. They also have the ability to make your computer go into sleep mode at any time, and to read your email without your permission. Frankly, I think ghosts who use this power are extremely childish: Yeah, that was real funny Ghost of My Dead Great Grandfather, I was watching Andy Griffith and you changed it to Hercules: The Legendary Journeys; could you please change it back now? Of course they never listen.

  • Vortex – Sometimes ghosts (like toddlers) just need to throw a little tantrum. So they create a swirling vortex containing your belongings and pets. This would be fine, except that when they get tired, all the stuff they had in the vortex just drops to the ground and your junk gets strewn all over the place. What the hell! Is it too much to ask that you clean up after yourself? Stupid ghost.

  • Bleeding Walls – I wouldn’t classify this as a ghostly prank,it is just plain disrespectful. Imagine if you just bought a new house with really nice off-white carpeting, and the first night you have it some crippled old American Indian ghost decides that he’s going to make the walls bleed just because you built your house on his family's sacred burial ground. Even if he just does it in one room, that’s at least a few hundred dollars worth of carpeting: Ruined! 

    Man, if a ghost pulled that with me I would blow my own brains out just so I could come back as a ghost too and kick the crap out of him. Then I would probably try to make the walls bleed Billy Mays from the OxyClean commercials to works some of his magic so the next owner wouldn’t have to buy all new carpet. The padding might be ruined though, unless I summoned him real quick.

    Billy Into da matting, into da padding.

  • Psychokinesis - To explain it simply, this means throwing junk around. Sometimes when it’s quiet, ghosts get bored and decide to cause a little commotion by hurling your stuff. Imagine that you are just sitting in your favorite chair reading the paper and all of a sudden the cup of coffee you had set on the table levitates into the air and flies across the room, smashing itself into a million pieces against the wall. You would be pretty angry (and rightly so), but what can you do? Ghosts will be ghosts.

  • Possession – They say possession is 9/10ths of the law. I’m not sure how this relates to ghosts, but it sure was a good way to start a paragraph. A lot of people think that when someone is possessed, that Demons (or Daemons) are responsible for it. This is wrong, and the reason why is simple: Demons don’t exist; ghosts do. So when you head over to visit Aunt Mable and her head is spinning around as she vomits bile and slams a crucifix into her crotch again and again while screaming the foulest obscenities you’ve ever heard, you can nod your head knowingly, raise a single finger into the air and say "Looks like the work of a ghost!” Then you should probably leave.

    Possess Whoopeee! Satan lives within me!

Pop Ghosts
There are plenty of ghost references in popular culture. Here is a dismissive overview of each.

  • Casper The Friendly Ghost – The ghost of a fat kid who goes around whining all the time because nobody will play with him except blind kids

  • Scooby-Doo – The worst cartoon in the history of television. The same 2 frames of animation play of these dorks walking around a haunted house and Shaggy gets scared and that piece of crap dog Scooby eats a Scooby Snack. Somebody should poison that dog.

  • Ghost Busters – Some ugly poor people travel around the city while 80s music plays and shoot jagged laser beams at ghosts. Then they transform into cartoon characters and become even more mediocre and plenty of stupid kids buy Ghost Busters toys because they are weak-minded

  • Ghost Rider – That dumb clod Nicolas Cage rides around on a motorcycle as a flaming skull. Another great role Nick, just keep starring in those below-average blockbusters in which you give pained grimaces and gesture wildly.

    Cage Excuse me sir, might I fondle your child?

  • Ghost of the Edmund Fitzgerald – Nevermind, I just remembered that it is called the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald. But not like it matters, the only people who would know that song are a hundred and sixteen years old.

  • Ghost Writer – Don’t confuse this with Ghost Rider, this was a show about kids who found a magic ghost who would talk to them by writing in a magic book or something like that. It was on PBS so the production values were a little better than Dr. Who. Which is to say they were a little better than the most unappealing thing I could find in a dumpster in which people only throw the mangled and bloated corpses of plague-ridden homeless people. But maybe I gave Dr. Who too much credit with that.

  • Ghost Dad – Bill Cosby plays a black ghost. This film was very important to black children everywhere because it showed them that black people die too.

    Sid Hello, this is Sidney Portier, director of Ghost Dad
    wishing you and yours a merry Christmas!

Are Ghosts Real?
Yes; ghosts are very real. This answer is sufficient for most, but there are some people who value what they call “facts” and “evidence” over common sense. This list of ghost evidences should bring the nonbelievers up to the same level as the rest of us.

  1. People say they have seen ghostsWhat, are you going to call a guy you never even met a liar? I can’t think of any better evidence than word-of-mouth heresay from nondescript persons of unknown mental capacity, thank you very much!

  2. Doors – Sometimes doors in houses slam shut when nobody is around. Spooktacular!

    Door Yeah yeah, laugh it up doorlion!

  3. Virgin Mary – This ghost is everywhere! She has appeared in snow banks, in dreams, and in a grilled cheese sandwich that some old broad decided to sell. Also she appears in a drink.

  4. Strange Presences – There have been reports of people who have felt what they described as a “strange presence” inside a particular room or house. Case closed.

  5. The Bible – Inside these hallowed pages are some of the best evidences of ghosts. For example, I think there is one passage where Jesus (the main character) says something like “All ye nonbelievers something something something” and also there is a king called King Saul or something and he cuts a baby in half! That isn’t technically related to ghosts, but wow, that sure is messed up. In conclusion: The Bible!

  6. Harry Potter Has Ghosts – Lots of people like Harry Potter.

  7. Photos – Look at all these pictures I was able to find of ghosts, and this was without even trying:

    Ghost 1 Ghost 2 Ghost 3 Ghost 4 Let’s see you refute that evidence, Factie.

  8. One Time – I came into the living room of my aunt’s house because I was staying there to watch her cats after she died there recently and I came into the room and the rocking chair was rocking back and forth and nobody was even around it was super freaky, no not even any cats or anything were around and all the windows were shut and everything and I asked my mom and she said that was the exact chair she was rocking in when she died honest.