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One man’s quest to buy every haunted item online

This Twitter account is not for the faint of heart.

 

David Britton

Internet Culture

When buying used items online, there are a ton of pitfalls to watch out for, so it’s always advisable to get as much information as possible before forking over any money. Is it a legitimate seller? Is the item a fake? Is this guy from Craigslist just going to beat you up in the parking lot and steal your car? 

But what we’re all forgetting to ask is the most important question of all. Whether it’s a bag of dogfood or a used truck, there’s only one thing you really need to know: Is it haunted?

Comedian Alex Price is not afraid to ask that question. In fact, he’s been asking it over and over and over again, and posting the results to Twitter for the world to see.

The Daily Dot caught up with Price via email and he filled us in on all the paranormal details:

So where do you finding these listing in the first place?

“Is it Haunted?” started off as a joke I posted on Facebook. I said if the first question when you’re buying a used car isn’t “is it haunted?” then you’re not adulting right. That got a lot of positive response, so I decided that I would see if I could keep it going. I was already a member of a couple of garage sale groups just because I like vintage video games. So all the “Is it Haunted?” posts come from Facebook garage sale groups. I’m currently a member of 37 of them.

Do you have any actual belief in the supernatural? Are you even a little afraid your tampering with forces beyond human understanding?

Part of this joke involves my love of the movie The Conjuring, simply because the Warrant family had that room in their house that was full of haunted shit, which, you know, seem like a really cool thing to talk about at parties or whatever. I do believe in ghosts. I saw a ghost when I was on a field trip in middle school at a cemetery. It was wearing an Abe Lincoln hat and it walked behind an old tombstone and then disappeared. But as far as worries about whether or not I am going to have any sort of spiritual ghoulish repercussions for my tomfoolery, I have none.

Has anyone ever responded that the item they are selling is in fact haunted?

Sadly no one has said that an item is haunted and meant it. If a person does respond that it is haunted, my plan is, if they are within reasonable driving distance, me and a friend are going to go there and I’m going to say that my friend is a paranormal investigator or a medium, and we are going to like secretly film  a meeting and my friend is going to claim that the item is not haunted, then I will accuse the seller of shenanigans and probably start crying.

Do you ever feel guilty for messing with these people?

I don’t necessarily feel guilty for doing this to people because it’s not like I’m saying “I’m going to buy it” and setting up a meeting time and then not showing up. And honestly if they don’t understand that this is just me being silly then they deserve it

It seems like you usually just post the first few messages. Do people ever keep responding or do they always give up as soon as they realize you’re messing with them?

I usually only post the first few messages because pretty quickly people just think I’m insane, or they think I’m fucking around, also it’s pretty easy to tell via my Facebook profile that I’m a comedian, so they just kind of assume I’m messing with them.

How many people actually reply to your initial message? Do a lot of people not even bother to respond?

“Is it haunted?” is such a weird question that I think a lot of people respond because they are kind of just taken aback by how odd it is. Also, you get to play with the fact that these postings get buried by other things for sale, so by responding they actually bump their item back to the top of the list. A lot of times they’ll respond just to get some action on the listing.

What made you decide to start doing this in the first place?

Oh, I do this simply out of boredom, and because it’s funny to me.

Have these interactions ever made their way into your standup?

Yes, I’ve actually started reading some of my favorite post on stage and it’s gone really well. I usually gain a few Twitter followers after each show so that’s been pretty fun.

What’s the best response you’ve gotten so far?

I’m always hoping that the person responds to the initial question “Is it haunted?”, with some sort of open-ended thing where I can then use my creative writing skills to kind of go deeper into the fact that I believe that items could have paranormal entities attached to them. That’s when the magic really happens. My favorite interaction was probably the guy selling a boa constrictor because he just kind of set it up perfectly. 

Really though the posts are like my children, they’re all my favorites.

You have to pitch “Haunted Shopper” as a series to a room full of network executives. What do you say?

I mean probably the best bet would be to walk into the History Channel and just pitch it like some sort of Pawn Stars rip off. 

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