Archive for the ‘The Beginning…’ Category

Coop here again,

Pardon me for getting personal here, but I’ve had a few emails from site visitors asking how I know Wes Cotten.  Not sure if these guys are friends or family but I encourage them to contact me again if they are (wescotten@live.com).  As for my relationship with Wes, that’s a valid request since I’m running his site now. 

Here’s how I know Wes…

This was back when I was living in Los Angeles around September 11, 2001. After the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, things were looking pretty grim. Most of my business deals were being dropped like a hot potatoes and newspapers stopped printing my articles so they could focus on the national crisis. My old bar/hangout wasn’t the same anymore so to ease the misery, I started haunting some other venues. At a dive bar in the San Fernando Valley, I met Wes.

I was in the middle of my first Guinness when he barreled into the mostly empty bar and loudly announced that he was in North Hollywood and had just seen a UFO being chased by police helicopters. I instantly thought he was a nut but it made me laugh. He seemed disappointed that no one seemed interested in what he had witnessed, but I offered to buy him a beer to calm his nerves. After awhile of talking, I told him about the time I saw an octagon-shaped UFO fly over the Sunset Strip when I was at the Cat Club attending Guns N’ Roses guitarist Gilby Clarke’s birthday party. My only fellow witnesses: Two stoners sharing a joint (man, I wish that story WASN’T true because it’s embarrassing to tell it). He got a kick out of that and we made a decent night out of a strange one.

Soon I was meeting up with Wes on a regular basis at various spots around the Valley to grab a beer, trade stories and philosophize about what was becoming of the world we lived in. He cared little about politics but could easily win a debate. He hated pretense, but had no difficulty putting a literati in his/her place. He made hanging out fun again. So when he started talking about weird stuff, I enjoyed every minute of it.

A couple of years later, we had established a strong friendship (this was before all the craziness of “Myspace” and “Facebook”… something that he never bought into). We hung out regularly but never with eithers’ social circle. We were autonomous, independent and always ended up in strange locations, talking to the weirdest people due to our interests.

Eventually, Wes had to move due to monetary constraints, so he chose to go back to Memphis around 2005. He had a passion for helping underage and underprivileged youths, coming from a similar background himself.  He felt he could make a difference in his hometown.

When I returned to the mid-south myself, I had limited contact with him. An email here, a party invitation there… but we were hard pressed to reconnect.

Before his disappearance, I got an email from him:

Coop,

Only you might dig this, but I’ve found something pretty cool up here. All that crazy shit we used to talk about isn’t as crazy as half of the stuff I’m finding now. I want you involved. Get in touch, man.

-Wes

After a few missed opportunities we finally reconnected.  I went up to ElvisTown and met Wes and his brand new girlfriend, Sarah. Wow. What a knockout. Wes was a ladies’ man but I never saw him with a girl like Sarah. I can’t even begin to describe what a perfectly impossible woman she turned out to be, even on a first impression. No wonder Wes liked being back in Memphis so much.

Over the course of the night, Wes kept telling me about info and stories that he absolutely HAD to tell me about, but we never had the aside time to discuss it.  The night was young, Sarah was all over him and the drinks were flowing freely.  By the end of the night, he and I promised to get together soon and have a constructive pow-wow on the info he had in mind.

That’s the last I ever saw of Wes, or Sarah for that matter.  Almost a year ago.  

As for the material Wes left behind for me, he found a lot of interesting stuff… but it’s epic in volume.  It’ll take me a good while to sort it all in my free time.  It’s creepy, it’s neat and I’m going to post what I can from this hodgepodge of notes and interviews (?) he has amassed.  He’s got some videos too, I’ll get to those when I get a solid nerd to fix my comp so I can view them.  Apparently my system doesn’t respond well to this “Divx” crap.  I’ll definitely include the unsettling images and artwork he scanned into most of these posts.

I was worried at first about Wes disappearing, but not so much now.  He’s the kind of guy with an active passport, no ties, a taste for the weird and a sense of humor.  I’m going to dig through what he’s left for me and post it.  I’m positive that’s what he wants me to do, and if my browsing his crazy material is any indication, I’m SO down.

Stay tuned to The Man Behind the Door for updates.

-Coop

Coop’s site: (http://www.smalltowncritic.com/)

Wes’s interview with “Chris” (Part 1)

DarkCornerChris (name changed because he is a minor) is a homeless and orphaned African American boy who frequents the shelter in Memphis where I volunteer. He seems wise beyond his years and has an uncanny knack for avoiding group and foster homes or other various institutions. Occasionally they catch him but he always ends back on the streets fending for himself.

One day over lunch I overheard him teasing another young boy that the “Boy in the Corner” was going to get him. When I asked him about it, he told me a freaky urban legend that has made the rounds in the area. It harkens back to some familiar territory as urban legends often do, but I had never heard this one before. The creepy thing is that the more I looked into this story, a bigger, more ominous mythology emerged from this simple, yet inventive urban ghost story. As the bigger picture began to emerge, I decided to start up this blog to record what I had found for all you people who are interested in spooky folklore.

Part 2 of the interview HERE…

Chris agreed to let me record him in an interview. Here is the story he told me:

Wes: Okay, Chris. First tell me who you are and how old are you.

Chris: I’m Chris. I’m 10 years old.

Wes: How long have you been living on the streets, Chris?

Chris: I don’t know. Forever.

Wes: Couldn’t be forever, right? Where did you live before?

Chris: Social Services kept putting me in foster homes. I just run away.

Wes: When’s the last time you were in a home?

Chris (shrugging): Awhile now.

Wes: How do you live out there?

Chris: People give me stuff. They tell me, “We don’t want you starving or nothing,” and they give me stuff.

Wes: Like?

Chris: Food and money… and clothes.

Wes: And they don’t try to turn you in to Social Services?

Chris (LAUGHS): Sometimes they try. They can’t do shit though, you know. I just run away.

Wes: Chris, the other day you told me about the Boy in the Corner.

Chris: Yeah.

Wes: Tell me that story again.

Chris: Again?

Wes: Yeah, that’s why I’m interviewing you. C’mon, tell it again.

Chris: Man, it’s just this thing folks on the streets say.

Wes: What people?

Chris: You know, folks that other folks don’t like talking to. They say shit, like the Boy in the Corner shit.

Wes: Alright, tell it to me.

Chris: There’s this boy. They said he was a bad boy, like always getting into trouble.

Wes: Like how bad?

Chris: He was the worst boy ever. He so bad his parents sent him to the corner forever. Like he should be an old man or dead or something now but he ain’t cause he’s still sitting in that corner.

Wes: What did he do to get sent to the corner?

Chris: I don’t know, like the worst thing in the world. Something so bad you can’t even talk about it.

Wes: Where is he now?

Chris (shakes head): Different places. Like places where fools don’t go like basements or attics or rooms that only got one way you can get out, but he always in that corner.

Wes: How does he get around?

Chris: It’s just like ‘pop!” and he’s there. You walk up and he surprise you. Just sitting in that corner, staring at you.

Wes: So he’s a ghost?

Chris: NO! Ghosts is like Casper and shit. That’s baby talk man.

Wes: You ever seen him?

Chris: I did one time but I got out of there. Nuh uh. I’m not going to mess around with that bad “Qwatha” (spelling?) mojo.

Wes: What is a “Qwatha”?

Chris. They ain’t no joke. That’s all I’m saying. You ain’t supposed to talk about them and shit. They real bad. Like badder than anything.

Wes: Okay, what did the Boy look like?

Chris: Like black. Not like black like black folks, he’s dirty like he ain’t ever had a bath. He’s so dirty, he look black. I only see his eyes, looking at me. It was real dark.

Wes: Where was this?

Chris: This old house nobody was staying at down off of Poplar. Well, there were some bums in there, like some black old bums but the bathtub don’t work so I made a bed in there and they leave me alone. I gone to Beale to get money and I came back and they all gone. I go looking around and this one room had trash bags over the windows. It’s so dark I couldn’t hardly see. I see him moving in the corner and I thought it was that bum Rodney, but it was the Boy. I saw his eyes looking at me and I ran.

Wes: Were you scared he was going to get you?

Chris: No.

Wes: Why did you run then?

Chris: Cause the Man Behind the Door.

Wes: There was another man there?

Chris: No, but if you see the Boy, the Man Behind the Door be there too. You have got to run fast. He will get you for sure if you don’t.

Wes: Is the Man a Qwatha too like the Boy?

Chris: Naw the Boy ain’t and he ain’t neither. You ain’t listening to me. He’s like a cop. He gonna get you if you don’t follow the rules. I don’t care. I just run cause I can’t do nothing else.

Wes: You ever see this Man Behind the Door?…

In the 2nd part of the interview, Chris explains the rules these specters operate by and gives me a lead on another source to interview that knows a lot more about it than he does. What I learned sent a chill down my spine. I’ll post it next week so either check back then, or – better yet – subscribe so you won’t miss any new info!

Wes.

(To be continued in Part 2)

blurry-scream

Wes here.

I’m getting the site up as fast as I can because – from all I’m learning – I want to have the information documented online ASAP.

I’ll have my first real post up soon and after that I think you will see why I’m anxious to look into this more. I can find very little on the web about this stuff, but what I have found so far is keeping me up at night. The word ‘spooky’ does not quite cut it.

I am hoping that you guys can help me find the info that I can’t find on the web or through the interviews I’ve been conducting.

I will post the first interview as soon as I locate an interviewee (who has somehow gone under the radar) so I can confirm a few details.

Wes