Word of the Day: pareidolia

This is starting to look like 2 for 2. Yay! This story was, in part, inspired by “date night” which is every Wednesday night at my house. On Wednesday night, my sisters and I sit in front of the TV and watch Ghost Hunters together, mocking it without mercy via instant message. This Wednesday happens to be 09/09/09, so, it seemed that pairing numerology with the paranormal is an obvious fit.

Today’s Word:


As in:

Tonight on Ghost Hunters: The team is joined by the winner of our first ever viewer drawing, Andrew Kahler, as they investigate a former factory turned museum. Could it be that some workers never left?  Then, Tango and Steve find themselves facing their worst fears in an ancient, abandoned hospital. That’s all coming up on tonight’s Ghost Hunters!

The Investigation
The Wyatt Factory, 9:09 PM Sept. 9, 2009

Andrew: Guys, this is *so* awesome to be here with you tonight! Man, I *love* the show. Do you remember that one time, when Grant’s jacket was yanked? Man, that was *so* cool!

Grant: Yeah, Andrew, that was great. We should probably be paying attention to the investigation.

Andrew: Sure thing, boss. Hey! Do you guys see that face over there? Look! Oh, man!

Jason: I don’t see anything, sorry. Grant?

Grant: Nope, I think that’s just the light reflecting off the paint.

Andrew: But, look, it’s got a nose, and part of a mouth, and that there could be an eye.

Grant (tilting his head): Um. Well, I guess if you’re Picasso, maybe, but, really that’s just a reflection.

Andrew: Seriously, guys, that’s totally a face!

Jason: No. It’s really not a face. It’s nothing.

Andrew: Well, maybe the cameras caught something.

Grant: Sure. You can go over the evidence with Tango and Steve.

The Evidence:

Andrew: Guys! Look! Do you see that! Right there! It’s an orb! It’s moving, and it’s red!

Steve: I’m pretty sure that’s just a lens flare. Yeah. See, here?

Andrew: Woah! Look here! I found something! Look here. There’s a face in the floor right here. It looks exactly like that dead kid they mentioned!

Tango: Nope. That’s just the wood grain.

Steve: Look, we’ve got 20 hours of footage to go through, We can’t stop every 2 seconds to look at something that looks vaguely like a face.

Andrew: Well, I’m going to make sure Grant and Jason take a look at these

Tango: Yeah. Whatever. Sure.

Grant: I agree with Steve and Tango, there’s nothing here. I think, Andrew, you may have an extreme case of pareidolia. We’ve seen it before. You see it in those people who have found rutabagas looking like Jay Leno, or who see the face of the Virgin Mary in taco shells and…

Andrew: I saw that taco shell, and not only was the Virgin Mary clearly defined, but, on the other side was Christ and His disciples. Judas even had horns!

Grant: Yeah, right. Like I said. You might want to talk to someone about it. It’ll probably make things easier for the people that you know…


pareidolia / pair – EYE – doe – lee – ah /  a type of illusion or misperception involving a vague stimulus which is perceived as clearly being something