Thursday, March 12, 2015

Tales for the campfire

Recently I ran across a storyteller on YouTube that I really enjoy listening to. I'm not sure what the magic ingredient in his voice is or why I prefer listening to him vs. many of the voices on YouTube. I think part of it is that he genuinely sounds like he is telling you these things firsthand. He's probably reading these stories unless he has a photographic memory but they're told in a way that sounds like a friend is talking to you. He gets the emotions and the timing right.

The storyteller is Otis Jiry and he reads stories that are anywhere from a few minutes to an hour long as well as some dark poetry. A lot of the stories he reads are those "Creepypasta" stories. For those who don't know, Creepypastas are short scary/shocking stories posted online. They're usually written in way that sounds like they really happened, even if what's being described is pretty wacky.

So I thought I'd post a few of my favorite readings from Otis Jiry. Those of you who get my blog by email will probably have to come read my actual blog because I know these videos don't generally show up for you.

The first one is called "Ash Hollow: The Odd Little Well" and was written by R.J. Wills. This story isn't too scary, it's more mystifying. It would be good for a discussion group where everyone could share what they think it means. I thought it was descriptive in the way where there are just enough personal details to make it sound real.

This next story "Birthday at Freddy's" will seem extra spooky and familiar for people who remember Chuck E. Cheese's. It's a little scarier than the last story.

I always thought those animatronic critters were creepy!

If you'd like to listen to more of Otis Jiry's storytelling, here is his YouTube channel:

Otis Jiry's Creepypasta Crypt

There are a variety of different types of stories on his channel. Some are pretty morbid.

While listening to Otis' channel, I saw a recommended video on the side of my screen. I clicked on it and really enjoyed what I heard. Listen to this one in a dark, quiet room. The lady who reads this has a whispery, haunted tone to her voice. It's a story from the point of view of a babysitter but it's different from most scary babysitter stories. This is another one worth discussing, because there would probably be a lot of different opinions about what happened. "My Last Night Babysitting" by Jeanna Saccomano:


  1. Neat channel! I'll have to give it a listen sometime soon!

    I remember reading a hilariously failed Creepypasta once. It was one of the 'eerie twist on an old cartoon franchise' ones, and was about a 'recently found' Superman propaganda cartoon where Superman brutally kills Stalin. A superhero murdering a historical figure was meant to be the creepy hook to the story, but the person who wrote it clearly did zero research on the 1940's, because if they had, they'd know that ALL cartoon characters racistly mocked the Germans/Japanese in propaganda cartoons, as well as frequently killed their regime leaders. There's one real Supes cartoon where the dude totally wipes out most of Japan's military with nary a twinge of guilt. Old cartoons sure were over-the-top, weren't they! So much so that the Creepypasta stories about them don't end up half as violent! haha!

    1. Chris ~ These channels are definitely worth listening to! I've listened to a lot of Otis Jiry's videos over the past few days. Some stories get pretty dark and some are funny. Although, they maybe weren't supposed to be. I was thinking of you last night actually, because I thought you might be amused by some of what I was listening to. I guess just from the idea I've gotten of your sense of humor. I was laughing through one story because it was so over-the-top ridiculous. It's all so personal how people hear/understand things. I often find myself laughing at something that was intended to be scary or shocking. The story I'm talking about was supposed to be an explanation for what happened in that "Birthday at Freddy's" story I posted. I liked "Birthday at Freddy's" because it sounded like a personal, vivid account of a childhood memory. This other story sounded like a really long crime report. But you might still be interested and you might also get a laugh:

      "The Origins of Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria"

      The story starts off seriously enough and then goes off the rails. :)

      I haven't read all that many Creepypastas yet, but from what I've seen, they're pretty hit or miss. Ah, so the Superman/Stalin story you read was less creepy than just historically accurate. Yeah, it's actually pretty horrifying to look back at old propaganda. It isn't even that old considering how awful it is! I've seen some political cartoons in old newspapers that are shocking by today's standards. Pretty much every ethnic group got stereotyped. I'm talking WWII era stuff and earlier. But some of the animated cartoons during WWII are pretty surprising too. I know I've seen some old Looney Tunes stuff that wasn't at all PC. You sure wouldn't see that kind of thing in kids' cartoons nowadays!

      So, do you have any scary Creepypastas to recommend?

    2. Colour me extremely interested!

      Yeah, they're very hit or miss. Even the ones I'm about to recommend aren't great. First, there's Black Widow, which has a pretty cool concept, but unfortunately the story is too short and ends before a story can kick in. It's a shame, because it's a family history I'd be quite interested in knowing about the characters behind.

      Then there's the best I've read, the very long Godzilla NES creepypasta, which while stupid and overblown in parts, and rather cliche in others, it manages to evoke a decent atmosphere.

      There's a pretty well-known one called Ben Drowned, about a Zelda game. It starts off neatly ooky, but it's tells too much story, completely ruining its mystique. It's funny how when you watch really ambiguous things, like Picnic at Hanging Rock, you're really curious about what happened, but if you actually find out what happened, the mystique just vanishes.

    3. Chris ~ Cool! I'm sure you'll get a few laughs out of it. Or you'll just be wondering what my deal is for finding it funny. :) Oddly, the part of the story that made me laugh most was probably the most inappropriate part.

      I do happen to know about Ben Drowned because of a makeup tutorial of all things! I like watching this guy who calls himself Pinkstylist on YouTube. He did a number of Creepypasta inspired makeup looks:

      Pinkstylist Creepypasta Looks

      He seems like such a nice, gentle person but his costumed looks are beyond disturbing! Sometimes he goes on Omegle as these characters and frightens people out of their skin. It's lots of fun to watch. :)

      OK, I'll check some of those other stories out. I know what you mean. Sometimes I feel like Goldilocks - "This story is too short. This story is too long." I liked the stories I shared in this blog post in part because they were the right length. That origins story I linked to goes on and on, which is part of why it started getting funny to me. It could have been wrapped up in about five minutes.

      Yeah, sometimes the mystique is what makes a story! I probably shouldn't have read the Freddy Fazbear origin story, because I liked the explanation I'd thought up for what happened more.

  2. i didnt even know this stuff existed on youtube :-O

    1. Kakuidori ~ I didn't until recently either! It was a fun surprise, because I really like listening to a good storyteller. I've listened to a lot of Otis Jiry's stories, but I think it's time to listen to more stories from the lady in that last video. I liked her style of storytelling. Her voice was quiet and made me pay full attention, listening for what would happen next!