The Search Terms from the Black Lagoon: “Something Chill and Slender in This World” and Other Queries Answered

abandoned computer

Previously: Why You Shouldn’t Buy Haunted Dolls.

Hey gang! We’re back with another addition of The Search Terms from the Black Lagoon, in which I attempt to figure out what you were searching for when you found The Ghost in My Machine. We’re getting poetic this time, so get ready for it.

 1. “Don’t remember childhood memories creepypasta”

A huge number of creepypastas deal with the subject of memory; it’s an imperfect thing that we can’t always trust, which is why I think we’re so endlessly fascinated — and frightened — by it. Unfortunately this particular search term doesn’t give me a whole lot to go on, since so many pastas feature people who have suddenly recalled events from their childhood they thought they had forgotten. A couple of my favorites, though, are these:

2. “The ghost of witch tree lane”

At first I thought maybe this one referred to a story, myth, or creepypasta; accordingly, some preliminary searching pulled up the West African legend of Gang Gang Sarah, the Witch of Golden Lane, the Chesterville Witch’s Grave in Illinois, and a creepypasta called “The Witch’s Tree.” But I search specifically for the phrase “witch tree lane,” a children’s novel by Ann M. Martin, widely known for The Baby-Sitter’s Club series, called Here Today popped up repeatedly. There’s also a Nancy Drew mystery called The Witch Tree Symbol. My money’s on one of those two books being the solution.

3. “Something chill and slender in this world”

This phrase is from the John Burnside poem “On the Fairytale Ending,” published in his 2011 collection Black Cat Bone. The quotation it’s from reads as follows:

“it’s autumn: broken gold

and crimson in the medieval

beechwoods, where our shadows come and go,

no darker

than the figures in a book

of changes,

till they’re hexed

and singled out

for something chill and slender in this world,

more sleight-of-hand

than sorrow or safekeeping.”

Black Cat Bone has been quite well reviewed, so it’s probably worth checking out. Read the full poem here, and snag the book on Amazon here.

4. “Ghost in the machine, the tree and the”

This is the best I’ve got. It’s not much. Sorry.

5. “Josiah teen murderer couple Halloween”

This one is quite sad: In 2002, 16-year-old Josiah Seth Ivy and 19-year-old Michael Paprocki gunned down a married couple, Gary Alflen and Stacy Dahl, because they wanted to see what it felt like to kill someone. Both are now serving life sentences without parole.

6. “In the creepypasta 1999 how did Mr. Bear kill the kids”

You don’t want to know. Trust me. It’s better that you don’t.

…But if you must, it’s addressed in the story’s 11/09/11 update.

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