Have you seen life of Pi? If you haven’t, it’s a story about a boy who escapes a sinking ship and is left on a lifeboat with a tiger. At the end of the movie, the boy admits that he survived the cast away because of the fear of the tiger. A fear, that kept him alert, moving and thriving to live.
Fear of anything keeps us fast on the draw and vigilant. Remember when you were little, and how you mother used to scare you saying that if you don’t finish the milk, that big dog in the dungeon will come and get you? And then you bottomed up the whole thing at once. Similarly, these urban legends kept people observant for years. Kids didn’t roam in the dark. parents took special care of their children and pets, people checked door’s lock twice before sleeping and everyone was told not to let anyone in without cross checking.
We don’t know if any of these stories are true, but it kept people alert and hopefully will keep you too.
1. Slit Mouthed Woman – Kuchisake-Onna (Japan)
It is said that this young lady named Kuchisake-Onna was a samurai’s wife and she cheated on her husband with a younger and a better-looking man. When her husband discovered her betrayal, he punished her by slitting her mouth from ear to ear.
The myth is that her spirit still wanders as a girl with surgical mask on. She goes and asks people, ‘Am I pretty?’ If they say no, she rips them apart and if they say yes, she removes her mask and asks, ‘How about now?’ If they say no, she cuts them in half and if they say yes, she slits their mouth to make it just like hers. There is no escaping her.
2. Sexually Frustrated Ghosts- Korivi Deyyamu (India)
These are the ghosts of ladies who haven’t had their sexual desires fulfilled. So, they look for men everywhere to satisfy their need. Although, they cannot enter any village which has a temple, so they target the travellers.
This myth is highly popular in South India and the men there are advised not to travel at night. If they do, they should look down and walk silently without any noise in order to not attract the ghost’s attention. If they get a feeling that they are being followed, then they are not suppose to look back and stutter as the spirits can sense the fear. Then they might feel someone holding them and saying ‘Raa’ (come) to which they are suppose to confidently reply ‘repu vasta’ (come tomorrow) and only then can they get out of there safely. If they fail to do any of these things, they will become the ghost’s slaves until their desire is fulfilled.
3. The Greek Soldier (Greece)
It is said that a Greek solider who was returning from World War II to marry her fiancé was tortured and killed by a group of fellow Greeks who had strong and hostile political beliefs. After his murder, there were incidents reported where an extremely good looking Greek solider in uniform used to appear and seduce war widows and virgin girls with the sole reason of impregnating them.
After five weeks of baby being born, the soldier used to disappear leaving behind a letter which said that he had returned from the dead merely to spread his seed, so that his sons might avenge his murder.
4. The Face Scratcher – Muh Nochwa (India)
This phenomena became highly popular in early 2000s especially in the states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The word Muh-Nochwa actually means face scratcher and there were numerous incidents reported where people had their faces scratched out or disfigured. There were even deaths associated to Muh-Nochwa. It was believed that the attacker hurt your face violently and intended to suck your blood dry.
Even after so many instances, no one could trace his physical appearance. Some said he resembled an insect but some associated it to possessed creatures extra terrestrial beings.
5. The Newborn – Tiyanak (Philippines)
This one is a little different from others. The ghost is always in the form of a newborn baby lying alone in the forest crying frantically. If any passer by picked up the baby to look for the mother or guardian, he would be scratched to death and his face will be eaten as the baby grew dagger like claws and teeth. Some say that it is foetus of a boy from a mother who died before giving birth.
The part which amused me was ‘how to escape the baby ghost?’ If you wear your clothes inside-out, the creature will leave you alone and wander back in the forest. These ghosts and their weird tastes!
6. The Toilet Paper Ghost – Aka Manto (Japan)
Japanese school bathrooms are one of the most scary places to be. This ghost called Aka Manto asks you a question when you are in the toilet. ‘Red paper or blue paper?’ If you say red, then your body will be torn apart until your clothes are red. If you say blue, your neck will be strangled until your face turns blue. If you try to outsmart the ghost by saying some other colour, you will be dragged to an unknown place and killed.
The only way to escape is to say ‘no paper’ as it leave you alone then.
7. Come Tomorrow Ghost – Nale Ba (India)
If you visit South India, especially Bangalore, you will see ‘nale ba’ written on many doors. There’s a reason behind that practice. Few places there are suppose to be haunted by a ghost which knocks on doors and kills every member of the family as soon as the door is opened. The only way to escape is write ‘nale ba’ on your door which means ‘Come Tomorrow’.
If due to any reason the message got erased, then you know what will happen.
8. The White Death (Scotland)
This little girl in Scotland hated life and everything about it. So, to put an end to this misery, she killed herself. Coincidently, few days after her death, her entire family died with their limbs torn apart.
After that she roams around knocking on doors and kills the person who opens it. Her main aim is to keep her identity safe, so she kills everyone who gets to know about her. Guess what? You know about her now. Don’t open the door tonight!
9. The Black Eyed Kids (USA)
These two kids basically try to get inside your house by talking you into it. So they will either say that they are lost and they want to call their parents or they want to use the rest room (basically things you cannot say no to). The younger kid will always keep his head down since that kid had no eyeballs and his eye sockets are blank and black. Once they enter the house, they obviously kill the owner.
The trick is to keep them out and not let them enter. They do not force if the owner is unwilling. Several incidents in USA have been reported where two creepy kids pester the owner to get inside the house.
10. Okiku Doll (Japan)
This mysterious doll placed at Mannenji Temple in Japan is possessed by a spirit of a child. According to the temple, the doll had short cropped hair initially but it grew about 25 cm long down to the doll’s knees. Even though the hair is trimmed occasionally, it keeps growing back.
It is said that the girl for whom the doll was purchased died to to sudden cold and her restless spirit took refuge in the doll.
I have done my work. Have a good night sleep. Don’t forget to look under the bed!