spooky kid, Buffer, wooman, tripinthehed, Oatmeal, henwy & Ham
Sabine, kewpie, Phoebe99, wooman and tripinthehed

Okay, this wasn't a particularly drunken meat, but it was unique as far as Sissymeats have gone.

On the heels of the smashing NYC meat, spooky kid and Buffer made a stop here in Chicago. And boy was it interesting.

It started with wooman, spooky and myself traipsing about the city. We stopped in a junky but super used bookstore to start our day. Following lunch at Panera, we headed northwest to a magic shop, where we were delighted by a great salesman (he demonstrated many of the tricks, even gifting me with a kewl paper hat). woo and I watched spooky's eyes light up while constantly saying "I'll take that." He dropped a wad in that shop!

We went from there on to Chicago's oldest cemetery, Rosehill. We marveled at the beautiful architecture of the mausoleums, gazed awe-struck at the beautiful sculptural stones and laughed at the underlying meaning of all the obelisk monuments. We came to realize how little such art is created today.

Buffer and trip joined us for dinner at Jury's outside in the toasty summer air. Believe it or not, the elusive Ham came along as well. I think many of you were beginning to wonder if he really existed, though several of you met him in passing. We enjoyed lots of laughs and some good food before leaving the restaurant for the main feature.

Bachelor's Grove.

It took us some time getting there, since we really didn't know exactly how to get there. The directions were sketchy, so we made do. We stopped in search of green lollies (we intended on taking a photo of at least one of the graves with a lolly for the big contest) and flashlights as the sun was saying its final adieu for the night. Finally, after what seemed hours of driving around in circles, through side streets, around and around, we found the entrance to the cemetery. Parking was another issue. Cops were spotted in the parking lot of the forest preserve across the street and we didn't want to get busted, so we parked in an apartment complex lot on the other side of the preserve the cemetery is located in.

We walked for about 25 minutes to reach the path to the cemetery. It just was so much darker than I'd ever anticipated. The tiny flashlights we all carried were hardly a comfort.

We trekked the path to the gates to find a trash bag hanging from the broken fence. Of course, we thought a body was inside, so we made spooky look. Nope. It was nothing more than Busch (beer). Tentatively, we stepped through the gates.

I'm not sure what everyone else anticipated, but I personally was overwhelmed. The place was so unkempt and wild. Grass in some areas was almost as tall as me. The stones we encountered were somewhat sombering.

Soon after our arrival, we heard some noise, Ham insisting he heard voices. My scared level rose. You couldn't see much through the thick tall grasses. We continued on through the small place, stopping to inspect and pay respects to the assorted grave markers.

Suddenly, we spotted a blue light flashing through the trees. Our first thoughts were cops had followed us in, but none of understood why the light was blue. I then remembered that one of the phenomena of the site was glowing orbs of light, some of them blue. I suggested quietly it was these.

By now, we were all on edge. We made our way to a large stone, the Fulton stone. At the front of the stone was a smaller marker with the words "Infant Daughter" carved into it. Someone had recently laid flowers and a small toy bear on the lip of the marker.

There was a sound we'd been hearing since entry, a sound almost like a duck. As we rounded the path past the Fulton stone, it grew louder. Frogs, we all figured, and the infamous pond must be just beyond another broken gate. My nerves had become almost shot, due to more blue lights and the very loud sound of the frogs. I didn't want to see the pond. The pond itself is supposedly to be haunted as it was reportedly a dumping ground for the mobsters' murder victims.

Of course, I didn't want to see this pond, but I didn't want the boys to leave me outside the gate. The water was entirely covered with a green scum. trip threw a stone in, disrupting the surface of the scum. We were shocked at how quickly the scum filled in the hole. In seconds it was back as it was before we'd disturbed it.

We were pretty much all scared at this point, and decided it was time to leave. As we made our way back to the entrance, it became clear that we were dealing with other living humans in the cemetery, which didn't ease my fear. The humans fumbled up when they tried to make scary noises. We knew more or less what we were dealing with.

As we made our way out of the cemetery and back down the path, two boys revealed themselves behind us. spooky gave them a "B" for their efforts, and they joined their girlfriends waiting outside the entrance to the path.

Slowly, we made our way back to our distant parking spot, laughing.

Does this mean the place isn't haunted? No. Does it mean it is? No. It just means that tonight, our ghosts were a couple of kids. It also means that I forgot all about the green lollies in Ham's pants and that we were not to face evil death in the cemetery this night.

Regardless, it was a splendidly unnerving place to be at night. I'd long wanted to do something like this, but was unable to find anyone to join me. While excited, I was also terrified, so for me, this was a big step. I'm glad I had Sissies to share it with.

Thanks for the fun night!!!

- Beef, July 16, 2002

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  spooky kid and wooman outside a bookstore. Beef's actually rare, but she's taking the photo.
Beef, in the keen new paper hat the magician gave her, and spooky camp it up in the magic shop just before spooky drops a bundle. He was like a kid in a candy store.
woo and spooky next to the elaborate grave of Frances Pearce and her baby daughter in Chicago's oldest cemetery, Rosehill.
This little girl, who died over 100 years ago, is still being showered with gifts today.
woo, spooky and Beef think they'd make a lovely monument.
Buffer, trip, woo, Beef, the elusive Ham and spooky do dinner. They want to make sure they've got full stomachs before Evil Death takes them later in the evening.
Ham, Buffer, spooky and trip try to look scary in this creepy Irish cult banquet hall's parking lot.
  Still trying to look scary. Is it working? Are you scared?
Ham and spooky on the dark trail up to Bachelor's Grove. What I can't tell you is the nature of that creepy trail of light in the top left corner.
Ham, Buff, spooky and trip, tentatively moving forward. More unidentifiable light in the top left corner.
A scared Beef, Buff, trip and spooky just inside the cemetery's gates. Do you guys SEE how freakin' dark this was, for Cliff's sake???? We're in a freakin' cemetery at freakin' night!
An ominous spooky rests on a beautiful old grave marker as an increasingly tense Beef stands watch in the pitch blackness.
trip and spooky move forward along the narrow path of Bachelor's Grove. Please note all the strange orbs of pale light floating about. We didn't see them in the air and are unsure of their origin.

Ham and Buffer trying to pretent they're not scared. Don't you believe them for a second.

trip and spooky arrive at the Fulton grave. This appears to be the largest marker in the cemetery. Allso note more of those strange orbs.
spooky checks out the front of the Fulton grave. In this instance, the squiggle of light is from spooky's flashlight.
This is the small marker in front of the large Fulton stone, with the words "Infant Daughter" carved into the front. A recent visitor left some gifts for the baby.
spooky tries to illuminate the dark lake with the glowing green scum to no avail. This lake is rumored to have been a victim dumping ground for Chicago mobsters. Pleasant, huh?
Complete blackness.
Yah, um, Beef is just ready to go now.
The moon through the trees of the Forest Preserve on the way back to the car.
Another shot of the moon. Is it just me, or does it look like, oh, maybe just . . . SATAN?
From the 35mm camera: Another shot of the tall grasses. Hard to tell what could be hiding amongst them.
  One of the creepy, narrow trails between the graves.
  The glowing green scummy lake of death. Anyone up for a swim?
  I think this would be the perfect setting for a picnic on the beach with the family.
  trip, trying to forge some unholy alliance with the evil forces of the lake.
  A distant stone below the only, though very faint and rather large, orb of light captured on 35mm.
  It's because there was so much of this that the normally directionally astute Beef got so disoriented.
  trip, Buffer, Beef and Ham look for the punks hiding somewhere in the cemetery trying to scare the bejeesus out of them.
  trip's gonna go kick some major punk ass. If he can find them.
Safely away from the cemetery, the boys are relaxed enough to stop for a soda in an auto shop parking lot.
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