Red Lipstick just ain’t my thing, and other oddities.


By Lucy Cafiero-Ahl

For years I didn’t understand what was happening to me.  Young women who had been brutally murdered appeared to me in my dreams.  It wasn’t until I finally accepted the fact that I could hear dead people talking to me, did they start appearing during my waking hours.

They invaded my head like the Americans did to the beaches of Normandy.  I couldn’t stop it no matter how hard I tried.

I would get really, really drunk and then just pass out; it would keep them at bay for a little while; but when I got high, well, that was a different story.  When I got high, they became louder.  They demanded my attention by placing images of their last moments, usually what went through their minds just before they took their last breath.

“I will never….” but they never got to finish the sentence. After all, once you’re dead, you’re dead.  Right? Nope. Fact is, we never die.  The body’s energy goes out into the universe, making us free.  Free to do whatever, without a mortal body, so there is no food, no cold, no hot; a different type of hell, but a hell just the same.

I’m not sure when it all began, I think it was in 1951, I was 7 at the time and we were living in Brooklyn, NY.  My mom was a stay at home mom, as were most of the mom’s back then, so I was rather surprised no one was home when I arrived from school one day.  The door was unlocked but my mom was nowhere to be found.

Our house was like a railroad flat, and my room was in the back.  I was facing the mirror of my dresser when I saw a man’s reflection by the front door.  He looked like Fred Astaire. He had opened the front door just a tad, enough to lean his head in.  He was in a black tux with a black top hat. Looking at me, he tipped the hat, just barely leaving his head, and smiled.  I thought I heard him say something like, “Ready to go?”  As I turned around, he was gone. The door was still ajar.

Walking slowly through the house towards the front door, my heart beating so fast, I thought I would faint.  Touching the doorknob, an electric shock coursed through my hand, up my arm as the hairs, long and black, stood straight up.

And then there was George.  He was my friend.  My best friend. We did everything together.  It didn’t matter that no one else could see him or hear him.  He was always dressed in funny looking green clothes and he had a funny green helmet which sometimes he wore and sometimes he carried under his arm, depending on what activity we were involved in.  He was around for a long time and then he wasn’t.

Did I tell you about the basement? Whoever was there, I didn’t have a good feeling about.  He lived behind the heater in the darkest corner of the basement.  He liked to scare me because he knew I knew.  I never did see his face and George wasn’t around any longer to protect me.  He was just a dark shadow with long spindly fingers.  He would use those fingers sometimes to trip me as I ran up the basement stairs.  I hate basements.

When I got older, the hissing in my ears was a clear indicator someone was trying to contact me.  At first it was only every once in a while. The quieter my house got, the louder the hissing.  So I always played music whenever I was alone or getting high and I never fell asleep without the TV on.  God forbid I acknowledged them.

The 1970s and 80s were the worst decades for me.  Many women were brutally killed.  Bundy, Berkowitz, Kemper, Bittaker, Norris, Bianchi, Buono, BTK, Gaskins.  I had no rest. Even those I couldn’t understand came to tell me…what…I don’t know…I just know I had little sleep and the hissing just got louder…

They always showed me eyes…the eyes of their killers…crazy, soul less, bottomless pits.  And THEIR lips…always red.  Lipstick? Blood? Didn’t matter, red became fear.  And now, it’s my turn.  Peace finally.  The hissing has stopped.  They came to help me.  My ending, red with fear.

Did I tell you I was dead?  Well, I am.  And I am writing this through someone else.  A believably sane individual who everyone knows and admires; a strong person; someone who just couldn’t make a story up like this if she tried.  She, too, inherited the hissing.


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