INTERVIEW — TAPE #4, SIDE #2
Q: Mark Gordon Russell (interviewer)M: Maxine Mc Wethy (the mother)W: Bill Mc Wethy (Maxine's husband, age 62)T: Twyla Eller (daughter)B: Brenda Bell (daughter)K: Kim Carrell (daughter)F: Marla Ward (nicknamed Fae; daughter)R: Jerry Bell (Bill's son)S: Steve Eller (Twyla's husband, age 26)E: Eric Carrell (one of Kim's sons)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: AS TWYLA AND I CONTINUE OUR EXCURSION I TURN OVER THE TAPE AND BEGIN RECORDING AGAIN WHEN SHE MENTIONS ANOTHER STRANGE ANECDOTE.)
T: We went by that old station. It had been chained and boarded up. And it had bars over the door where you couldn’t break in. They commented about it on our way to the cemetery. Well, we weren’t even gone ten minutes and we came back this way. The chains and bars were knocked down and the bars were gone. (“IF”) It was like ‘come on in’ so we stopped and went in there. Michael threw a rock and he talked a little bit. We don’t know what he said.
Q: You couldn’t understand what he was saying?
T: No, I couldn’t. You see that moon?
Q: It’s full, I know.
T: It’s cool, isn’t it?
Q: Full red moon.
T: Oh, it’ll be bad too. Full moon — he’s wild. That’s why I’ve been — (“WELL YOU KNOW”)
Q: You know, our brains are like batteries. (“YOU KNOW”) And as the tides are affected by the moon, so are our brains. So if you are causing this somehow, you would think that on the day of a full moon there would be more activity. (“THE BEST”)
Q: That’s a scary thought though, isn’t it? That you might be causing this all somehow — that your subconscious mind might be causing this.
Q: There’s just no way anyone will ever know for sure.
T: There’s no way of being confident or anything. I could know as much as a psychiatrist.
Q: It’s just too hard to fathom at this point. That’s why I think it’s important that these kind of cases (“YOU KNOW”) are recorded. (- “OH GOSH”)
T: That moon is gorgeous.
Q: I just love seeing the countryside too. Oh, look at the moon. It’s great.
T: It’s beautiful. Gorgeous.
Q: In L.A., all my friends work in the film industry and no one ever shuts up about the film industry. And they don’t even make any good movies any more. I liked it in the seventies when they were making really interesting films. The auteurs. Now they just make junk.
T: I like the old TV shows better like “La Verne and Shirley” and “Happy Days.” (“RIGHT”) “The Brady Bunch.” (laughs) “Out on a Limb.” Those are better shows. (“NO WAY”)
Q: Those are all Paramount shows. Did you hear about “The Brady Bunch Movie”?
T: What about it? The reunion or something?
Q: Did you see that yet? (“BELIEVE IT”)
T: Uh-uh. (“SORT OF”)
Q: It got good reviews. (“WHO”)
T: Oh really?
Q: Who directed it? Betty Thomas directed it.
T: Oh. (“WHO YOU KNOW”)
Q: They’re going to make a sequel to it. (“ALREADY ALREADY”)
T: Did you see it?
Q: Actually, I didn’t. I read the script and I wrote the press kit but I, for some reason, (“YEAH”) I just never got around to seeing it. (“YET”) I just heard something. (MEOW) A croaking noise in the back seat. (“OH WHAT DO YOU KNOW”)
T: Like a what? (“GA”)
T: Oh Gosh. Don’t say that.
Q: I did.
T: That’s Rachel.
Q: Rachel, you’re here.
T: That’s how she talks.
Q: Oh my God.
T: (raspy) She talks like this. (“KILL”) Well, you know, she got stabbed in the throat.
Q: I wonder if I got that on tape? (“YEAH”)
T: You heard it in the back?
T: Oh Lord. She’s back there. Well, she’s not dangerous but — (“OH”)
Q: She’s along for the ride. Well, I invited her along for the ride. I’m glad she’s joining us.
T: You did?
Q: Yes, I said, “Rachel and Michael, come along.”
Q: Remember as we were leaving? I’m glad. (“AHHH”)
T: Well, I heard something but I didn’t even know where it —
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: A ROCK HITS THE OUTSIDE OF THE CAR AND THE SOUND CAN BE HEARD ON THE TAPE HERE.)
T: Is that another rock?
Q: Did you hear — well, yeah, but who knows here? (“YEAH”)
T: But there are no rocks on this road.
Q: That’s right.
T: (small laugh)
Q: I probably should be going faster. I just want to be very safe and not run over any small animals.
T: You can hear better if you go slower, anyway.
Q: Yeah. (“YEAH”) Well, Rachel?
T: Oh, I can’t believe that. (“WHAT DO YOU”)
Q: She probably can’t talk to us very well.
T: No, she can’t talk very well. (“YEAH”) It’s just strange, though, Mark. (“UH-HUH”) You sit here and you talk to something but you can’t see it. And it’s so strange that you can’t see something that you’re talking to.
Q: That’s because there’s nothing there to see, maybe. (“HUH” “MAYBE YOU KNOW”) They’ve gone on to another dimension. (“YEAH”) But I am beginning to be able to hear better. Little strange noises. (“YOU DO”) Like maybe one word here or something there. (“I JUST THOUGHT”) I just thought I heard something — like sort of the suggestion of something in the back seat. (“BECAUSE”) Like the start of a word or something.
T: Uh-huh. (“JUST LOVE IT TOO”)
Q: I’m taping too, so maybe I’ll listen to it later on and, hopefully, there might be something there. I don’t know. (“UM-HUH”) It’s all very hard to pick up on tape though because it’s very faint.
T: You have to listen really good. There are things that you can do with audio tape. (“YEAH”) Okay, it’s that one right there.
Q: We’re here?
T: See the white — you had your brights on. (“SEE IT”)
Q: Oh. (“OKAY”) This is it here.
T: Leader Creek.
Q: Oh my God.
T: Did you just notice that? Leader Creek? It’s called Leader Creek. (laughs)
Q: Did you notice it before?
T: We didn’t notice that for a long time — but Leader Creek. What does that graffiti say?
T: And what’s the other one say? Hope? Whoopi?
Q: I can’t read that.
T: Is it Whoopi? (“UM”) Are you going to take a picture?
Q: Yeah, maybe I will real quick.
T: Well, if she comes up here I want — oh gosh. (“WHAT DO YOU MEAN”) If she shows herself.
Q: Well, I don’t think she can. I mean — whoops. I better turn off the motor and put the car in park. (“PSSST”) I don’t want them taking off without me.
T: Who’s doing this — defacing this bridge? You can see where somebody wrote on it.
Q: Where did I put my camera?
T: You need to tape that thing to your head.
Q: Oh yes. I know. Wait.
T: Just watch for cars.
Q: Yeah. No, I am. I know.
T: That would be ironic if we were run over and killed right here on this bridge. Find it? Don’t tell me. He’s got it. (“I WONDER WHAT COMES IN HERE”)
Q: Well, I thought — let me look in my pocket. That’s where I thought I put it. It fell down here. (“YOU KNOW”) You know, I might be crazy but I thought for sure — maybe I’m going nuts. Maybe I’m just freaking out and don’t even realize it.
T: Look up there. That’s where it was last time.
Q: Yeah, but — oh, I see — maybe it fell down there. You know, it’s there and there’s no way that could have gone there.
T: That’s what it did earlier — that’s where I found it.
Q: I mean I was careful. I kept this right — oh God. I don’t know.
Q: Maybe it fell down. I have no idea. (“NOW HE WILL”)
( . . . )
(“YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE TAKING A PICTURE OF”)
T: That would be cool if you got a bunch of ghosts to (“TAKE” “GHOST”) those
Q: I’m going to put this right here where I won’t forget it. (“OKAY”)
T: You could go probably up there somewhere and turn around.
Q: Okay. (“I’LL BE IN THE”)
T: Cattle guard or something. (“YEAH” “NO”)
Q: It’s interesting how you keep hearing little noises and things.
T: I know. (small laugh) (“YEAH”)
( . . . )
T: But I didn’t know if you did so I didn’t say anything until you mentioned it.
Q: Did you just hear that clicking noise?
T: That what?
Q: I mean, you know — I — (“UH-HUH” “OH MY” “GOD”)
T: Oh, a cow. It scared me. ‘Oh my God, go back.’
Q: Oh gosh. There are insects too.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I NAVIGATE A TURN.)
T: You got to stop —
Q: Wait, am I in a cow guard? I don’t even know what they look like, remember?
T: Just watch for a driveway or something like cattle guards or a pasture road.
T: Something like that. (“IT’S INTERESTING OH GOD”)
Q: Well, I can definitely be one of the people on your list of people who can vouch
for you. (“IT’S UNBELIEVABLE”)
T: Yeah, we might have you leave an affidavit.
Q: It’s good that you’re doing that, though. I mean how can you not?
T: LMNO Productions wanted us to do it. (“WHO’S YEAH”)
Q: Oh right.
T: With the moon and all there’s a beautiful home down there. (“FORREST GUMP”)
Q: I just hope that they’re not waiting for something more to happen before doing something.
T: I wondered about that, myself. (“YOU KNOW”)
Q: Because, you know, there’s plenty. (“SOMEBODY SHOULD GET STARTED”) Either that or he’s interviewing writers. (“BUT” “I DON’T KNOW”) I don’t know. It suggests to me that he isn’t doing that because (“YOU DON’T”) usually you give more money in good faith than he gave you.
T: More than $500?
Q: That’s not much of a motivation to get people to cooperate with you. (“YEAH”)
T: That’s kind of what they first said to Mama. (“I MEAN”)
Q: I mean that’s alright. (“SHE CAN’T”)
T: Should she have gone higher? Should she have said, “Hey . . .”
Q: It depends on what rights she gave them. Until I see the contract I don’t know. I’m just saying it depends on — did you hear that?
T: Yeah, I did. I heard that one. Where did it come from that time?
Q: It came from the back seat. But what was that? It was like —
T: We probably just picked up Jane.
Q: Who’s Jane?
T: His mom.
Q: Oh my God.
T: That’s Jane Sutherland. Oh! And listen to this. We lived in Duranch. Oh, I was about ten years old. Years and years ago. There was a locket that showed up. My mama had a brand new home and the locket showed up in the window — an old, old locket. It said “To Bob —” (“NO”) — “To Jane From Bob With Love.” And that was years ago. Well, Mom still has it and we had an antique dealer look at it and he said it’s from the 1930s. He said it wasn’t worth that much for just the locket. Where you open it up there’s no picture. He said it was worth probably about $15. And because it was (“FUNNY” “YEAH”) from the ’30s when it was made. (“UM-HUH”) We found out later on — Michael said his dad’s name was Bobby and his mom’s name was Jane. The locket was an old one that his parents first gave each other. And my mom still has it. It’s strange.
Q: So what was that? It was sort of like a rasping noise.
T: It’s like she can’t talk.
Q: So that was her again. Okay. (“YOU KNOW”) I sort of joked (“KITTY”) —
oh well. (“ARE YOU”)
Q: No, I’m not really nervous because —
T: You’re not scared or anything?
Q: No. (“SHHHHHH” “DOUBT IF I ONCE WAS”) It’s not threatening us, you know?
T: Yeah, but it’s something you’ve never seen before.
Q: But, see — because of having done so much research I already know that these things happen. I mean I do believe. You don’t always have to always see to believe in them when they seem compellingly true. (“YEAH”) I just wonder if they know. They probably don’t know what they are. (“YEAH”) Or they do know — maybe they do know. That’s even more scary.
T: I thought about it. Like that.
Q: Maybe they know they’re dead and they’re just having parties. They’re afraid to go into the white light, you know?
T: Yeah. (“I DON’T YOU KNOW”)
Q: Who knows? I don’t know but (“IT’S”) anyway, it takes a lot of (“YES”) details. Any detail that you come up with will be helpful (“YEAH”) in terms of dramatizing it or whatever.
Q: So, anyway. (“I JUST WANT”) I just want to figure out how do I approach this (“WHEN”) when other people have certain rights. (“YEAH”) I don’t want to do anything — (“BUT I” “DO”) I mean if you are getting (“BUT”) some big money later on, maybe I’ll —
T: I don’t think we do.
Q: — meet with him in terms of writing it with him.
T: I don’t see that happening, you know? (“WELL IT’S” “YOU DON’T KNOW”)
Q: Well, it’s not really just about money but if someone’s going to make a lot of money —
T: Your idea of big money and mine are totally different I guarantee.
Q: What’s your idea of big money?
T: My idea of real big money?
T: $50,000. (“UH-HUH”) What is yours?
Q: $50,000 won’t last very long.
T: It would back here. (“IT WOULD”)
Q: Yeah, but who wants to live — I mean, you know, in terms —
T: Well, thank you very much. (laughing)
Q: That’s not what I’m saying — I’m just saying when you’re used to other things.
T: What’s your idea of big money? About a million?
Q: The hard part is not making money. The hard part is keeping money. (“YEAH”) First of all, on all money you make you have to pay taxes — 30% goes to taxes. So figure you make $100,000 — $70,000 would be left. In L.A. the living expenses are very high with car insurance and everything like that. Last year I did very well as a freelance publicity writer and made over $100,000 and I thought I had it made. In that year I wasn’t able to save any more money than I had the year before.
Q: That’s how expensive things are there in L.A. I always thought, “Oh, if I could just make —”
T: Do you do that well every year?
Q: Well, that same year I had some problems with my financial consultant so that might explain it.
T: Yeah. That’s probably right.
Q: But I’m doing all right. (“YEAH”) My main client is Paramount Pictures and (“THEY JUST”) once in a while they’ll say, “We’ve got to save money somewhere.” So they try to pay me less money and I won’t work for less. By working with me freelance they don’t have to pay for insurance and retirement benefits or contribute any money to my taxes like they were doing when I was on the staff. So I just don’t do any work for them for a month or so and then they come back. (“YOU KNOW”) You know, it’s like — (“PAUL IS COOL”) you know, those kinds of games.
Q: Shhhhhh. But Paramount is the perfect client for me because they pay well enough that I don’t really have to hunt down a lot of other work so I can work on my research projects. (“THINGS”) And screenplays.
T: Did they pay for you to come out here?
Q: Oh no. This is all my own money. (“UH-HUH”) Listen. I wrote a history of the talking poltergeists. This trip is definitely very worthwhile to me. (“UH-HUH”) I guess it’s only a hobby at this point but (“I HAVEN’T SEEN”) right when I finished my book is when I read that Fortean Times magazine article and all this happened.
Q: I wrote a couple letters about it to publishers in New York and agents. There was one agent who I had fired ten years ago and I thought he had gotten over it. He hadn’t.
Q: I showed my screenplay of the original Bell Witch case to a producer who liked my Julia Pastrana script. (“I HAD”) You know, I bet (“YOU KNOW”) if I did get involved in this, there are a lot of producers I know that I could contact who would just be blown away. These are big money producers.
T: Turn right after the station.
Q: These aren’t freelance TV producers. These are major film producers — like one of the producers of the movie “Fire in the Sky.” (“UH”) Michael would like him. Robert Strauss. (“BRING HIM HERE — WILL YOU”)
T: I’ve seen that movie. My boyfriend took me to see “Fire in the Sky.” (“OH REALLY”) Yeah. The guy before I met Steve.
Q: That’s one of the least credible UFO cases in the history of the UFO.
T: Oh really?
T: It wasn’t that great of movie. But it was interesting. (“IT WAS SPECIAL”)
Q: The special effects were good.
T: I liked it.
Q: It was alright. Look at the little dog.
T: That’s my sister’s.
Q: It is?
T: Dogs everywhere. (“PROBABLY” “UH-HUH”)
Q: Maybe I should contact this producer who gave you the contract. He’s probably looking for someone good to write the project now. He probably wants a screenplay and not a novel too. (“WHAT”) You know. (“YEAH” “BUT”) But he’s got to get somebody who knows the subject. Then again, I don’t think you’re being treated fairly so if I were you I wouldn’t even (“YEAH”) say anything until I’ve seen a copy of what you signed. (“HMPF” “THIS ROAD” “SEE WE ARE” “I KNOW IT”) This is great.
Q: I love this rural America.
Q: It’s great. Oh my God. We’re here. Oh. I didn’t realize it.
Q: Unbelievable. Okay. Great.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: WE ARRIVE BACK AT THE HOUSE. I FORGET TO TURN OFF THE TAPE RECORDER AS I PLACE IT IN THE POUCH OF MY TOTE BAG SO THIS SECTION IS MUFFLED. I WASN’T ABLE TO TRANSCRIBE ALL CONVERSATION AND NOT ALL UNATTRIBUTED SOUNDS ARE RECORDED ON THE TRANSCRIPT. AT ONE POINT, MY CAMERA CAN BE HEARD ACCIDENTALLY GOING OFF.)
(“LET ME GET” “OH HERE WE ARE”)
T: Here we are.
Q: Oh shit. Oh no.
T: Is everything okay?
Q: Well, some things got scattered around.
T: Michael, did you do it?
Q: I have no idea. No. Actually, I saw them fall so I don’t know. It seemed like he was doing things.
T: Does that inside car light stay on? (“OH”)
Q: I think it does for a few minutes, I guess.
T: It might stay on. My mom’s does too. It’s like a security light.
Q: Let me lock it, though. Just in case.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: WE HEAD INSIDE.)
Q: I guess I don’t really need to lock it or do I? (“I DON’T THINK SO” SNEEZE)
T: Not around here. No one will steal anything.
T: Ooh, is that Michael? I still can feel that spider web.
R: Why? Where’d you go? (“HUH”)
K: No wonder that wasn’t working. As long as the sink’s broke. (“DUH”)
E: Well, if it ain’t it’s because Rachel’s with her. (“GOOD GRIEF”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S MESSAGE: A SPIRIT MESSAGE ON THE TAPE HERE SOUNDS UNINTELLIGIBLE AND MAY BE A WORD SAID BACKWARDS.)
Q: We heard Rachel in the back seat. (“WELL YEAH NOW YOU KNOW ABOUT ME” “REALLY”)
T: Real fancy eating. (“SOMEBODY” “OH”)
B: Supposed to be like Bob Gallo.
M: Give me a hint. Do you want a carrot stick?
Q: Yeah. (“GOOD” “WHERE’S”)
T: Where is he? Did he come back?
M: No, he said Kim wanted to go to Ada to buy me some clothes. (“WHERE” “BOY”)
T: But boy I told you to take my car.
M: I know.
T: Her problem was she thinks I took it. I wasn’t going that way.
M: There’s pop here if you all want it.
T: Do you want some pop, Mark? (“POP” “YOU’RE KIDDING”) My sister can’t lie.
Q: Papers fell out in the trunk. (“I CAN BELIEVE THAT”) I’ve got to get organized.
M: There’s some fruit punch over there too. (“YEAH” “HUH”)
T: Lance Gordon had brought that.
B: Anthony brought it. (“SAY HI”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: MAXINE INTRODUCES A VISITOR TO BILL AND MYSELF AND SHE SAYS “HI” ON TAPE HERE.)
M: This is Bill and that’s Mark.
Q: Let me get up for the moment. Sit next to him here.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THERE IS THE SOUND ON THE TAPE HERE OF A SMALL OBJECT STRIKING THE WALL.)
M: Ohh. Well, he just threw something.
B: He’s getting his rocks off.
M: A rock. (“YEAH”)
Q: That’s a great line.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I STUDY THE ROCK.)
M: Feel it right quick. Hurry. It’s warm. (“SHOULD I COME IN”)
Q: And they’re always smooth like that. (“RIGHT” “YOU KNOW” “UM-HUH” “SHE GETS” “ORGANIZED” “DANG IT”)
T: Ohhh. (“MICHAEL”) Never mind.
Q: It looked lovely to see the area at night.
F: Did anything happen over there? Where’d you all go? To the cemetery?
T: We went to the cellar. Michael’s cellar.
Q: The cellar and (“THE BRIDGE”) the bridge.
M: Did anything happen in the car, though? (“FUN” “YEAH RIGHT”)
Q: Twyla did the talking. (“UUM”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: MAXINE’S HUSBAND, BILL [‘W’] IS SEATED AT THE TABLE. HE IS ILL AND PORTIONS OF HIS CONVERSATIONS CANNOT BE HEARD CLEARLY. TWYLA’S HUSBAND, STEVE [‘S’] IS ALSO PRESENT. TWYLA AND I JOIN THE FAMILY IN HAVING SANDWICHES FOR DINNER.)
W: You didn’t go up to the cemetery, though?
T: Oh man. I forgot to take him to the cemetery.
M: They heard Rachel. (“THEY HEARD”)
Q: We picked up Rachel at his —
T: You know about down in there. (“DOWN HERE”)
Q: — house — where he — the house there. (“RIGHT”)
M: I bet him and Rachel just about go anywhere.
Q: He jumped aboard with us. (“SOMETHING JUST FELL”) Something just fell out and I wouldn’t want any of the documentation to get all bent. At one point, we heard noises in the trunk like Michael was going through things in the trunk.
Q: Has that ever happened?
M: We’ve heard him in the trunk and everything else, haven’t we? (“DIE” “AND THE”) There’s ham in there. Put his ham there.
Q: Oh, that’s good. What a relief. (“WHAT” “SHY COMPUTER” “WORRY” “THIS WAS ESPECIALLY — POLTERGEIST STORIES” SLAP) What’s surprising to me (“KIM”) about this area is there are no streetlights. (“YEAH”) I guess there’s no reason to have them. (“NO” “INTERESTING”) What I have here is everything that has been thrown since I’ve been here. A small collection. (“RIGHT” “I HAVE TO SHARE WATER NOW” “YOU HAVE TO DO IT ANYWAY” “WHERE CAN I WIPE”) And a nail but I don’t know where the nail went. I think he took the nail back. (laughs)
M: It’s gone? (“WELL I MUST”)
Q: It might have fallen out of my pocket and be in the car somewhere.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I LATER FIND THE NAIL ON THE DRIVER’S SEAT OF MY RENTAL CAR.)
R: He did?
M: Yeah. He took back — (“REMEMBER THE KNIFE DON’T YOU” “YEAH”)
Q: I might have misplaced it. (“DID YOU”)
M: Have you got it with some ham on it. (“HAM”)
Q: That’s fine. (“YEAH THAT’S GOOD”)
M: Enough cheese but —
B: Dang, I still haven’t washed my car. (“I DON’T THINK A WOMAN SHOULD” “I DON’T HAVE NO HOOK AND LADDER”)
M: I don’t have no hook and ladder.
S: (to me) Spooked ya?
M: I don’t even want you in there.
Q: Well, you know, (“RIGHT”) since I researched it I wasn’t really spooked by it.
M: Here we go again.
S: It’s weird.
Q: Yeah. I mean (“I MEAN HE’S GETTING OFF ON IT YOU KNOW” “YEAH”) I’m just (“MARK”) adding up the plot. I mean, you know, it’s like, at least, I don’t feel (“YOU’RE GREAT”) threatened or anything.
T: (small laugh) (“WAHOO” “GROAN” “BUT NEVER HERE”)
M: What are you eating?
B: Kim just called up (“WEIRD”) the owner. (“YEAH” “BOO-HOO”)
T: (to me) Do you want two sandwiches?
M: I’m sure he does. A big turnip. (“WANT TO TRY” “YEAH” “OH”)
Q: Well, I’m sure — one will actually be fine.
T: Really? Eat two. (laughs) (“ONLY HAVE ONE”)
M: There’s nothing in there but bread.
Q: (kidding) Ow.
M: (laughs) (“GUILTY”) Guilty. (“I WALK WITH HIM”) Miracle Whip?
Q: Yeah. That’s okay.
T: I need to fix Steve a sandwich —
S: Go wipe it up with a spoon.
T: — because I thought he already ate and it tastes good. (“I DON’T WATCH IT EITHER”)
W: We were forced to call the producer on this fairness agreement . . . (“NO”)
T: It feels to be — (“WHERE”) Gary loves me. ( “RIGHT NOW I’M LOOKING AT MY DICK — THAT AREA” “GOLLY” “YOU KNOW WHEN YOU’RE EROTIC IDIOM”)
M: Maybe you can find some in there.
T: Mama, there’s a beautiful moon (“NO”) outside. You ought to see it. He said there’s going to be a full moon. (“BORING”)
Q: Yeah. It was a big red moon.
S: Last night? (“HELP ME”)
T: Was it pretty? (“GO AWAY”) You were walking all over the town?
M: Get a ride into town?
S: What town? Just a couple blocks. (“HUH”)
T: Do you want a sandwich too?
S: They remember old Steve. (“NO” “RIGHT”)
M: Do you want a ham sandwich?
W: Uh-uh. (“WE’RE GOING TO BURY YOU” “HE” [METALLIC] “LOCK THAT DOOR”)
M: Oh, this thing’s jamming up. (“UH-HUH”)
T: He locked our doors too.
Q: The car has an automatic lock.
T: And the lights were going on and off. (“THE LO”)
Q: The dashboard lights went on and off.
M: Really? (“BUT”)
Q: Once it got too dark he stopped doing that. He knew that we wouldn’t be able to drive. (“YEAH”)
T: He’s kind-hearted.
M: Kind-hearted? Is that what you said? (“YEAH” “COME DOWN” “HOW YOU’RE DOING THERE” “MAYBE”)
T: I don’t know.
Q: The mewing noise, though — (“LIKE”) it sounds almost like a cat. (“YOU KNOW” “YEAH”)
T: He heard him laugh too. He heard Michael laugh.
T: And it’s a cute little laugh.
M: (to Megan) In here. Don’t mess with that, little woman.
T: Ah, he’s laughing —
M: He’s laughing. Mark, did you hear him?
Q: Yes — but — no — I didn’t hear him very clearly.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THIS REMINDS ME TO GET OUT MY TAPE RECORDER.)
Q: Do you think he’s a child?
T: I don’t know.
W: More like playing to me. At least he has a UFO.
Q: Really? (“YEAH” “MEGAN”) That would fit with the laughing.
T: He’s childish. (“SOMETIMES” “I DON’T KNOW”)
M: You know, it’s kind of strange. (“I THROW THE STUFF”)
W: His name’s always been Michael Sutherland.
M: Sutherland. You can’t do it wrong.
W: Sutherland. And yet he turns around some time and draws himself. (“YEAH” “YEAH”) Various other alien things too.
Q: Right. So who can figure all that out?
W: All I can really (“OH NO”) tell you for sure, son —
M: Did you get a range of stuff?
W: — is that there’s been so much that’s happened that I couldn’t believe it all.
Q: Well, I know.
M: You know who he is, don’t you?
W: Yeah. He’s one of those producers from —
M: No, he’s not a producer.
Q: No. I’m a writer.
W: A writer.
M: He’s the one I’ve been calling on the phone. (“NOW CALLED”)
S: Who called who first?
M: He wrote me and wanted me to call him. (“YEAH”)
Q: And one of the funny things is that I mentioned to her that I do a lot of work with Paramount Pictures. Apparently — what did he say exactly about that?
M: He told us one time that Paramount Pictures was going to make a movie. And he works for Paramount. (“GOOD” “DAMN”) Can you believe that?
Q: Well, it’s interesting.
M: Yeah. (“STRANGE”)
Q: Knock on wood, I mean. You know. (small laugh) You can never tell.
( . . . )
Q: I saw some of the tapes of the TV newscasts about the family.
W: Channel ten made that. (“WAS”)
Q: The magazine article was compelling too. (“YEAH” “MY HEAD GOES GET A KNIFE AFTER THAT STEVE”) I researched (“AND PULL IT BACK”) similar cases from Europe in previous centuries where similar (“YOU”) things have happened. (“THAT YOU”) When I read the article I knew it was true because it was so similar to what I’d already read.
W: And so much of it is nonsense stuff that —
Q: Yeah. No one would believe it.
W: — it has to be the truth.
Q: Who would make something like that up? I mean, if you’re going to lie you would —
W: Who’s making up that kind of a lie in the first place?
Q: Right. You would make a better lie. You would say, “I saw a headless person” or something.
T: When do you have to go back, Bill?
M: Tomorrow evening.
W: Tomorrow evening.
M: When we got him outside Brenda asked him, “How does it feel to be out?” Like he’s been in prison. (laughs)
W: And it is like a prison in there.
T: Check yourself out. If you don’t like it.
M: He’s fixing to get transferred. (“RIGHT”) He’s going to stay in there thirty days and then get transferred to Allen. (“THAT’S CORRECT”)
T: Oh my goodness. Allen? (“IT’S A GOOD PLACE”) Are you going to stay in there for good?
W: No. No way. (“DO”) Let me just get my strength all back in my legs, in my arms, back and all of that. (“PECK”) I’ve been having a stroke down one side and it’s left me about halfway paralyzed.
M: They can’t even get a blood pressure reading or blood out of him.
T: He’s had a stroke?
T: When? You might never have said that to me.
M: Several months ago. (“RIGHT”) (to Bill) You want some ham on that now or you want tomato sandwiches? (laughs)
W: Tomato sandwich.
T: Are you sure?
W: It’s real weird they did a vital sign on me on this side. I’ve only got about half of what I should have. (“UM-HUH”) When they do it on this side here it’s perfect. (“IS THAT”)
Q: Does that usually happen for stroke patients?
Q: I don’t know.
M: I know it. (laughs) (“SEE A DOCTOR I MEAN CHRIST” “YOU ARE” “DO I”)
W: There’s no real prognosis for it yet. As far as the doctor’s concerned, (“YEAH BUT”) they can’t really see where it — (“BECAUSE”) because charts — I mean — let’s see — in terms of the brain and — (“YEAH”)
Q: It’s hard to figure out, isn’t it? I think a lot of modern medicine really isn’t as advanced as some of the doctors think it is. You know?
W: About all they do is hand you a Valium and say go home and sleep it off.
M: You’re supposed to take that other pill.
W: And then you take another Valium.
T: Is that you? (“GOOD”) Something’s over here going “Oooh.”
M: It ain’t him.
T: And you’re not threatened?
M: I would have heard him.
T: Oh gosh.
M: I was standing around here.
T: I’m losing it.
M: No, you’re hearing it. (laughs)
W: There used to, Mark, there used to be a white (“OOH GOSH”) case. It was an antique case settled —
M: A desk. Twyla’s already told him about that.
W: — against that wall. (“UH-HUH”) And that thing got —
M: Is that him over there?
W: — hit so many times —
T: I didn’t hear it that time.
W: — and knocked around so much . . .
M: A leg was knocked off it. Steve’s been offering to fix it.
S: Damn it. (“UM-HUH”)
Q: Well, today the table moved.
M: Yeah, it moved.
T: Yeah, it got testy.
M: That end moved around this away. And Twyla hit her finger on a glass. (“UH-HUH”)
T: Cut my finger.
S: He used to move that for me — that desk in the living room. He’d move it all the way for me. (“WELL” “AHHH” [LOUDER] “AHHH”)
M: (to Bill) Now these you take in the morning. All three of these, okay?
W: Yeah, he fixed me up real good.
M: He didn’t do this.
W: Yeah, he did. He got all of the prescriptions from — he’s the one who set it up. Up until that time they were working out of that little bag of stuff. They’ve been taking my medication out of that bag and giving me what they wanted to. I suppose that’s what I think.