Via 2nd Ave Extension South



This is 2nd Ave in Seattle, Washington.

It’s more then just a street…

I find stories here all of the time.

Strange ones.



Second Avenue Before The Fire


During The Fire


 after the Fire


and what lies beneath


Photographer’s notes: “Mineral palace Great Northern Celebration July 8 1893” “Pavilion Pioneer Square. Celebration of Completion of the Great Northern Ry July 3 1893”.

I put this here because my Grandfather told me that a man was buried under those steps alive (of course) in vault after he was caught cheating in a game of cards that didn’t involve money.

 Grandpa told me he was sure the man could probably hear the construction going on above him but that no one could hear him screaming-

so my Grandfather claims.


 In 1903 The Ringling Brothers Circus came to Seattle and elephants walked down  2nd Ave.

That’s another story I grew up on because some of my family members were there that day and they saw those elephants and the Circus Performers walking down the middle of the street that I now cross every day to catch my bus.

100 years almost to the day I hear a story from who woman sees the Ringling Brothers train come through Seattle.

 The train is pulling empty animal cages and travel cars and Big Top rigging on flat beds. She remembers lace curtains in the private cars and the faded circus logo painted on anything that could hold paint.

She says she still doesn’t know how to explain the feeling she got when she realized she didn’t see one person moving around in the passenger cars or in the engine car or getting on or off the train the entire time it was stopped right off her loading dock.

Not a Soul.

True story.


( Luna Park )

The Luna Park Fire– if my Grandfather or Aunt told me a good ghost or murder story they always tied it to the Luna Park Fire and DIRECTLY to the Famous Looff  Carousel.

After years of being scared out of my mind by those stories I was glad ( in a very malcious way ) when they came to the part when the Park burned down- but the part that always haunted me was the part about how the Carousel gets away.

        Specifically, how it always seems to get away.

The Carousel’s Weird Story starts when the famous Carousel craftsman Charles Looff built it in 1906. The Carousel was supposed to be sent to an amusement park in San Francisco- but it was re-routed to Seattle because of the Great San Francisco Earthquake and Fire.

(Escaped was the word my Grandfather used) 

It was installed in Luna Park in 1907 and it was the only thing to survive the Luna Park Fire in 1911.

(Escaped was the word my Aunt used and she insisted they moved it at dark)

 It was purchased by a private collector in the 1970’s and put in storage in New Mexico- Roswell, New Mexico and I am NOT making that up.

That Carousel is still around- it’s in San Francisco and I wouldn’t go near it for neither love or money.


So there’s my 2nd Avenue in Seattle-

some of these places I’ve told you about are on it

or under it or just a few blocks down

from it.

That Street

 haunted me and inspired me for my entire life and I guess that should make sense because

 I was born in Seattle

and I know she has

strange and weird ways

 of speaking to you


of claiming you

and of making you her own.

Which is not a bad thing at all.


Saturnina Hits The Deck


Back in 1947  when I was a kid, I saw that thing they pulled out from under The Bridge.

You know- that thing they wrote about in all the papers.

They pulled it up from the Creek late at night, when they thought no one would be out there- and if anyone was passing by they wouldn’t catch much because back then there were no lights as opposed to the three street lights they have there now that burn out every other month.

So anyway, I’m standing there with my Grandmother who shot the thing with her rifle and with her Sister who was the reason we had ‘ that problem with the thing under the bridge’ to begin with.

” The problem with you ” my Grandmother hollered –  she had to yell because all you could hear was screeching and swearing coming from below-  ” Is your drinking !”

I could see Tia Saturnina smirking, ” What? I can’t hear you! ” She yelled back over screams and people shouting, ” it burns, it burns!”

” And your gambling. So which is this time? Both? How did you end up with that? ” my Grandmother jabbed her finger down towards the dry creek bed below.

” Things went a little sideways for me in a card game and so what? it happens to the best you know.”

My Grandmother’s jaw dropped and then her eyes got all narrow and squinty and before I knew it  my Grandmother shoved her Sister over the railing.

Saturnina went overhead first and the only reason she didn’t wind up down in the gully with a broken neck was that my Grandmother had her by the waistband on her jeans.

” That thing down there? Where did it come from? ”

” How the Hell am I suppose to know? What do I look like to you? God Damned Howard Koch? Let me up you crazy old bi-”

My Grandmother yanked and Tia popped back up. When she stood upright on her own Tia Saturnina’s eyes rolled up into her head and then she spun around and got sick over the railing.

When she was done a few minutes later, she said as she was still hanging over the railing, ” Wow, there was three of them? ”

” There were seven but guess who ran into the other four out on Old Creek Road? ”

” Uh-oh.”

” Get them back into the truck, get them out of here and then do something about that mess they made under the bridge. It’s making people sick.”

” Oh, and what about me? It’s not going to make me sick?”

My Grandmother handed me her gun and she put her nose right up to Tia’s and she said ” Now Saturnina…move it now.”

“Fine. Whatever you say. Now. Is that right? Now not later?”

“That’s right.”

 My Aunt started to walk away and then she stopped and walked back to us. When they were toe-to-toe again she gave my Grandmother a long and grim look and then she took my Grandmother’s gun from out of my hands and headed down the road.

From behind her back I saw my Grandmother pull out a small revolver and I heard her mumble over someone yelling for his Mother and Jesus ” Just stop and mouth off one more time…please…”

I don’t know if she actually heard my Grandmother because there was this long metallic screeching coming from something being dragged up the other side of the rock lined gully but Tia seemed to raise the shotgun up in reply and was almost swallowed by the dark at the end of the Bridge when it occurred to me that this time she might not come back to wherever it was she was being sent to.

I couldn’t count how many times she had climbed in through our windows in the middle of the night with her hair either cut or dyed or both and how many times she’d drop her purse or jacket and a gun would go off or a knife would open up and get stuck in the hardwood floor or make a hole in the couch.

This time it seemed that it was more possible then all of those other times that Saturnina might not come back with presents from places like South America or Egypt or those little Islands in the South Pacific where she and my Grandmother were from.

I might not get anymore shrunken heads (of course they’re fakes she’d say as she’d toss a few of them to me over the dinner table) or dolls with pointed bits of broken bone for teeth and real human hair.

And worse then not getting the presents or hearing her great stories about card games that took place in graveyards and ghost towns and morgues was the thought she could disappear right now and I’d have no idea where it was she had left for on that night they brought pulled those things up from under The Bridge.

So I ran until I caught up with her and when I did she didn’t slow down and she didn’t even pretend to care how upset I was.

” Tia, Tia,” I asked “where are you going?”

” Your Grandmother is sending me out to rid the world of one less problem- never mind this could spell the end for me because that woman thinks I’m the source of all that is evil.”

I stopped and then Tia stopped and looked down to where she thought I was standing. She looked back and boy was she disgusted. ” No-of course not.”  she snapped ” not ALL of it anyway.”

” When will you be back?” I demanded.

She sounded like she knew, but she also didn’t like the tone in my voice so she said ” Don’t know, when I’m done I guess.”

” Come on.” I said trying to sound hurt and defenseless ” please tell me I’ll be worried.”

” Brother…if we could bottle the BS this family spews we’d be the richest fertilizer company on the planet.” Tia looked up and said, ” Somebody screwed me in that game kiddo and there’s gonna be Hell to pay. When I’m done collecting I’ll be back. I promise.”


Saturnina came back a month or so later with presents and a story about how she settled up a score over a game of cards that went sideways for her in a little town called Roswell.



Based on the Soul Food Cafe

Writing Prompt

The Watsons


Inspired by The Soul Food Cafe Story Prompt

Walk Inside A Painting


” Somebody will find out, won’t they? ”

” Not a chance ” he told her.

” What we did was awful, wasn’t it?” she asked.

” I’ll say.”

” We can never go back. You know that don’t you? ”

” I figured as much.”

” Are you sure, are you positive nobody will ever find them? No one will ever find out what we’ve done? ”

The man told her, ” Nobody is as sick as we are, no one will ever figure out what we did to them.”

” I can promise you that.” He said. ” I can promise you that.”


 ” That’s a weird picture ” Livia’ s niece said as she handed the small tinted photograph to her Aunt.

They were rummaging through a box of old pictures and postcards at the Curiosity Emporium where Tia sold the antique books she collected on her travels.

It was a nice shop- it was quiet and a little messy and even though the air was dry it there was always the smell of mold and freshly turned earth coming from the backroom.

Livia took the picture from Akela and as she did their fingertips touched and Akela tried to not yank her hand away.

Tia Livia killed a man in a poker game once- it was a story that floated around at picnics and barbeques the occasional baby shower and other family events.

Akela wasn’t sure if she was hearing the same story with different variations on the theme, but it seemed like there were lots and lots of stories involving Tia Livia creating lots and lots of dead bodies.

Once Tia Livia heard her brother telling the poker story to some of his friends as they were roasting hamburgers and Tia came up from behind them and practically screamed that was a lie.

” Tell the story right Leo or don’t tell it at all ”

She had killed two men and a woman, Livia said between bites of cheeseburger ” Trust a man to underestimate the power of a woman ”

” She B.S’s all the time. ” Leo told his friends ” don’t believe her. Sure Liv. Two men AND a woman. At the same time. God, you are such a fibber.”

Tia spat a chunk of her burger out onto the ground and Leo smirked and went back to his barbaque.

Akela doubted Livia would ever hurt any of her own family but sometimes when Akela looked at Livia’s scared and slightly mashed hands she always felt a little trickle of sweat run down her shoulder blades.

Livia looked down at the faded picture and said with a laugh ” Well don’t those two look like they know where the bodies were chopped up and buried? ”

And as Livia let the picture fall from her fingers back into the box of photos the sound it made as it rustled into place almost sounded like someone whispering,

” You promised.”



That Daughter Of Yours


” That daughter of yours- she’s a quiet one, isn’t she? ” The 6th Grade teacher at Old Creek Elementary School said to Mr. and Mrs. Erbin at the last Parent- Teacher Conference” I don’t think I’ve heard her say more then four words in the entire time she’s been a student here. “

Mr and Mrs. Erbin looked at each other and before Mr. Erbin could open his mouth to reply Mrs. Erbin snapped, ” And whose side of the family do you think that problem came from? “

” Like I was the one responsible for wiring her brain.” Mr. Erbin pushed his face staight into his Wife’s face and they glared at each other.

” Really Mr. Erbin- nobody in this room had the sole responsibility for-” Mrs. Snodgrass wasn’t sure if she was repeating what she heard correctly so she said with a little hesitation ” for wiring Cynbel’s brain.”

Mrs. Erbin shrugged and looked up at the ceiling and smirked, and that one little gesture seemed to push Mr. Erbin straight into Angersville Population 1 where he became the Mayor upon arrival.

” We both had a hand in our daughters development Mrs. Snodgrass. We studied and observed, we took classes and tests we asked questions and attended more lectures until we were positive, confident that we could raise a healthy, intellectually superior child. And do you know what we have here?”

Mrs. Snodgrass was too polite to say what they had here.

” Cynbel eats bugs, she only takes a breath once every six hours and one of her eyes is permmantly shut. I’m sure that you’re  aware she won’t the touch the food on her plate unless it’s moving. Do you know what it’s like to have to sit next to your child and jiggle her plate so she’ll eat? “

” Go ahead and tell her who came up with that nifty little idea.” Mrs Erbin muttered.

” It worked, didn’t it? “

Mrs Snodgrass looked at both of the Erbin’s and shook her head- just a little.” Mr Erbin…we have the means to help your daughter -“

Mr. Erbin shouted, ” Our daughter is beyond help Mrs. Snodgrass because our daughter is like a science experiment gone horribly wrong. You must be able to see that.”

Mrs Erbin looked liked she was going to pick something up and hit her husband with it.” Anybody with eyes in their head can see that you insensitive fool. Go ahead and tell her whose project it was. “




inspired by the Soul Food Cafe Writing Prompt




Eye Catcher

I like to collect clip-art for my stories and sometimes I find these pictures that are stories all on their own…like this one- when I first looked at it I thought it looked like the woman’s eye is missing.

And it looks like she’s deciding right there that she’s only lost an eye…which is nothing that look on her face says, compared to what’s doing to happen to the person who took it.

And then there’s this picture.

When I first found this picture on the  Vintage Resources site I grabbed it because at a glance it looked perfect to illustrate a story I’d just finished.

Once I put the story and clip together though I noticed something strange on the left hand side of the picture that I hadn’t noticed when I’d first pulled it down from the Clip Art site.

There was a faded image of a child leaning against the railing and that child seemed to be present in a way that the more visible children weren’t.

I could think of at least three reasons for that image to be there and two of them made me glad I wasn’t in the house alone- so with all the lights in my work area on I put the picture up all alone here at my Owl Creek Bridge with a caption that read ‘Almost There’.

Later I found out that child wasn’t a ghost- not in the way you’d define ghost-  but at the time this picture was taken the ‘ Almost There’ child was indeed dead.

While researching the subject of Post Mortem photography for questions I had received about something I’d written, I learned that this sort of photograph was created as a memorial to people who had passed on.

This is the way it was done:

The family would pose for a picture and then an image of the deceased was superimposed onto the new photograph.

That’s what was done with this photograph…that’s why it was created- it’s a memorial to a dead child.

Like I said, there were two reasons I could think of for that image to be there and when they first creeped into my head I was glad I wasn’t in the house alone.

I wish that were true right now.


One Night Under The Bridge…


When I sit down and get ready to write a story here at the Bridge this scene from the movie Barton Fink comes to mind.


Take a look around…
You’re just a tourist with a typewriter,
Barton.  I live here.  Don’t you understand
that . . .

That scene pops into my head when I start to write a story because as a writer who sits by a campfire under a Bridge between the worlds and tells stories to strangers who happen to be passing by I can identify with Barton (the visitor) being raged at by Charlie, the man inhabiting a world that other people can only catch a glimpse of.

A world that they haven’t been invited into.

I started to go back to that scene in ‘Barton Fink’  several times a day ( what can I say, I write a lot) and I began to wonder –What was it REALLY like down there?

So I asked Regan Vacknitz to stop by and tell me what it’s like to reside, to be an invited guest to end of The Bridge.  I asked Regan because she’s the best guide in town-

Regan, you see, is a real life Paranormal Investigator.

 So let’s make some room for her round the campfire tonight. She has  an interesting story to tell:

My husband, David aka Vinnie, and I started this group roughly two
years ago. However, we have been doing investigations for about four years. Our very first investigation was Thornewood Castle. Thornewood is m known for being the creepy mansion in Stephen King’s “Rose Red.”

Since then A.P.A.R.T  has really taken off.

We have investigated known places like Bair Restaurant in Steilacoom, Old Western State Ruins in Steilacoom, as well as a plethora of private residences and historical societies.

 It was through the investigations at the Historical Societies that
really got us thinking about our direction.

A lot of paranormal groups just want to investigate the larger known locations. We do, don’t get us wrong, but we also like the smaller unknowns as well.

 We love working with the historical societies, because they keep us going. Our support of them keeps them going. We really assist each other.On the private residency side, we discovered that we are the only team, so far, that actually has a follow up “Post investigation family welfare check” form that we use.

We have found through experiences with other teams, that those teams usually do the investigations and turn over the findings in a report form.If you have a family that is calling you for help, usually you’re their resort to ending  their fear and chaos.

It seems a bit one sided if you go in, investigate, turn over findings and never contact them again. Who benefits? Only the paranormal teams do.

We have essentially taken on the role of Sociologist and community service providers. Our team prides itself on the follow up we do. We have shared our form with other teams, who have said, “Wow this is really a great idea!”

On the community service side, we have recently adopted a stretch of
highway for litter control. The stretch is about 1.75 miles, and along
side a cemetery. Can’t beat that!! You can find us on Highway 99, next
to Gethsemane Catholic Cemetery near Fife, WA.

We are also in the process of trying to adopt an older cemetery for documentation and photography, as well as beautification.

We are very into the community that provides us with an avenue to
pursue our macabre, bizarre, and unique hobbies. 

 I’d like to thank Regan for sharing her story. I hope you’ll drop by A.P.A.R.T and check out their site- here. Following ( in part ) is their mission statement as well as their contact information.


We are A.P.A.R.T. of Washington

A.P.A.R.T. stands for Auburn Paranormal Activities Research Team.

We are a non charging, professional, light hearted but serious, fun loving team. We try to prove things scientifically, before ever declaring anything possibly haunted. We are honest if we do not get any viable evidence. We do not, NOR WILL WE EVER, CHARGE for our evidence, investigations, etc. We do, however, accept donations.

Look for us on the web at HERE
or email us at

Secrets From The Bridge

“Anita, you write stories about ghosts and the living dead…you worked in a funeral home so tell me…what’s the scariest thing you’ve ever seen? ”

To be honest, I’ve seen lots of strange things but I’ve never seen anything that ever scared me. So I’ll laugh, joke and blow the question off.

Ask me the right question though and you’ll get a different answer- you’ll get THE answer.

I’ve never SEEN anything that frightened me but once I felt something that did.

I was working alone in a basement and for once I had the radio off and it was quiet, just still and calm. It was a nice feeling, sort of a ‘sitting by the lake at sunset’ feeling.

I was reaching for something up high on a shelf when I felt something tug at the bottom of my plaid work shirt- I always wear oversized plaid shirts when I’m down there because the dust is so bad it wrecks my clothes. I thought I’d caught my shirttail on something so I reached back and pulled it down.

Then I walked to the next shelf and just as I reached up I felt that tug again and I stood there with my arm halfway up in the air when I felt the same tug- up higher this time- under my shoulder blade.

 I knew I wasn’t alone.

And I knew if I turned around there would be nobody standing there.

Now, when I’m in trouble, or stressed out I give myself these pep talks and it’s always my Grandfather’s voice I hear.Only this time it was my Great Grandmother I heard- and let me tell you she was ‘snap your spine if you made her angry’ type of a woman.

 Comfort was not a word that springs to mind when I think of Nan.

” Don’t you dare turn around ” I was hearing, ” You keep those eyes forward and don’t turn around.”

Then I felt something tug at the end of my braid and I bit my lips really hard and tried to not yell. But I didn’t turn around and I walked away from the shelf and didn’t look back.

Worse then that tug on my shirt was that feeling that something was just behind me. Whatever it was wouldn’t go away and it followed me up the basement stairs.

When I got to the top steps and crossed over the threshold I turned around and pulled the door closed. And then I opened it again reached in and snapped the light off.

 This time I kicked the door shut.

That’s it; those five minutes are the one thing that scared me. You can make what you like of those minutes- after all I still wonder about them myself.

I’d advise you to not consider them when you’re alone though, I don’t.


News About Santisteven’s The Cry


La Llorona (the crying woman) has terrified Hispanics across the United States and Latin America for over five hundred years.

Now here is your chance to meet her-


In the mean time you can visit Bernadine’s very sleek new website for the movie by clicking here and you can read a very wonderful article she wrote about making The Cry for Anita’s Owl Creek Bridge here .

And you can get a very sweet taste of the film here .

Just remember as you go through these links and watch the trailer-

 La Llorona is real-

Bernadine Santisteven



Roswell 2007 UFO Festival!


They’re having a party

in Roswell


in Roswell

when they say everybody  is welcome





Click HERE to see the

Official Photo Logue!


Click  here To Reach

The official site





 There’s going to be some amazing fun like:


!!!Alien Encounter Haunted House
presented by Eastern New Mexico Medical Center!!!!



Come join us for a close encounter of the Roswell kind!

Not so sure aliens really crashed here
60 years ago?

 Come check out our own little Area 51 and see for yourself!
Admission is $5 per person and all proceeds benefit the American Cancer Society Resource Center at ENMMC.

Smaller children are advised to remain in the bottom level Star Wars-inspired Cantina area






Most Important of all

 you’ll have the chance to defend the honor of your Planet


The Alien Costume Contest



It’s not just a


it’s going to be an adventure



Once I went into an abandoned house just to take a look around.

It was  nice in there- there was a beautiful oak staircase and beautiful oriental rugs on the floors and lace curtains in all of the windows.

There were no beer cans on the floor or rock band names spray painted on the walls. There were no dead animals in the walls and the air smelled musty but not bad.

The house had been empty for over 5 years.

I went  from room to room and I opened closet doors and went through the linen cupboards.

Then I went into the bathroom and was surprised that it was so modern looking ( the house had been built in the 1920’s).

Inside the bathroom there was a white enamel bathtub and a matching sink and one of those free standing medicine cabinets that made this clicking noise whenever you opened or closed the door.

I had trouble opening the mirrored door and after I did I wasn’t sorry because unlike the other closets and cupboards I’d looked through the medicine cabinet had something inside of it.

I found some old brown bottles ( with handwritten labels ) and next to the bottles I found an old hat pin with a little red bead on the top.

I remember I touched the bottles and I touched the hat pin and I thought, ” wow, you could take an eye out with that thing. “

And then I thought, ” you could lose and eye right here Anita, and who’d know where you are? “

It was just a jumbled thought- but all of the sudden that sense of adventure was gone and I really could see myself stumbling around in this abandoned house that no one ever went into with a hat pin in my eye.

I put my hand to my face and ran my finger along my eyelid and when I had convinced myself everything was okay I closed the medicine cabinet door.

I actually opened it again, just to make sure that hat pin was still there.  I backed away from the sink into the hall ( no way was I going to turn my back on that room )and shut the door.

 I stood there holding it shut and I remember thinking , ” if that knob turns in my hand I WILL lose my mind.”

 I had to take my left hand and pry my right hand off of the glass door knob and I remember holding my hand to my chest and all I could think of was that hat pin and how I should check on it again.

Or maybe I told myself I should forget the pin and just get out now… 

So I walk slowly down the stairs  and back to the kitchen and just before I get to the door the faucet in the kitchen sinks starts to drip.

I stood there in  by the door which was shut ( did I shut it? did I shut it? It was OPEN Anita!)  and I watched water drip from a faucet that hadn’t had water running through it for years.

And then from right above the kitchen- where the bathroom was I heard a little metal click. 

I opened the kitchen door very slowly and I walked out of that house very slowly because I remember thinking if I don’t run….

it wouldn’t chase me.

I kept checking my eye over and over again- in fact by the end of the day I had rubbed the lid raw.

They tore the house down that Summer.

And I’m willing to bet that somewhere buried under the foundation of one of those new houses they put on the Abandoned House’s Lot…

is a hat pin with a little red bead on the top.

Tiny Tina Dahl



” My Ex-Wife took everything from me ” Corrin Ails said to no one in particular as he waited in line for the doors to the Village Place Mall to open.

“She took my home and my record collection and she even took my old photo album. 

All that I had in there were pictures of me with my pets and dressed up at Halloween and I think there was one of me a holding a Brady Bunch lunchbox when I was 9 . Oh, and there were about four pictures of me on my first bike.

She told me I was an ugly kid. So what did she want with my childhood pictures?” 

The woman standing in front of Corrin turned around and told him ” I cut my wedding dress up and used it to scrub the kitchen floor the day I found out my ex-husband was getting remarried. I made that dress. Then I mailed it to his new wife. She slapped me with a restraining order and now I have to take anger managment classes. People do weird things when the realize a relationship is truly over.”

” She burned that album on my front lawn ” Corrin Ails went on “then the fire spread and burned my house down and she even killed me dog with rat poison. She used him to start the fire.”

” No way. ” the man standing in back of Corrin said.

” ‘fraid so- three fire fighters died trying to put that thing out. ”

” I heard about that, ” the woman said  have they caught her yet? ”

” No. ”

” I’d like to catch her ” the Man in front of Corrin said, ” I’d like to catch her in the headlights of my car if you get what I mean.”

The Woman in front of Corrin said ” she sounds like a bad woman.”

” Her family used to call her Tiny Tina Dahl…just like that. It was her nickname…and no one seemed to care that it sounded like some freaky Special Edition collector’s toy you get for buying something really big and expensive. Tiny Tina Dahl…she’s so sweet and great with poisons and fire. Get your free Tiny Tina Dahl with your next purchase.”

There was a chorus of snickers and Corrin went on. ” Tiny Tina Dahl would take anything she could get her hands on…your house, your clothes, your money the Twinkies you keep hidden in your desk drawer at work for munchie attacks.”

” Wow, she wasn’t bad she was just evil. ” someone further down the line said.

” Yeah ” Corrin said ” she was pretty good at taking things…she even stole my heart and  she left me with nothing.”

” You seem like a nice enough guy ” the Woman said ” you’ll find someone new. You certainly won’t find anybody WORSE.”

Corrin reached for the top button on his shirt and said as faint as a dieing man’s last breath, ” You don’t get it  she stole my heart and left with me nothing ”


Inspired By The Soul Food Cafe Prompt:

Pitbulls I Have Known