Asheville Daily Planet
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Monday, 04 December 2017 23:57
Special to the Daily Planet

Most people blame things they’ve done — and probably shouldn’t have — on their pets. 

But what do you do when there is someone running around town who looks exactly like you, drives the same car you do, hangs out in the same places as you, in essence, is you, but it’s not you?

Unfortunately, I can answer that question from first-hand experience. You get through it the best way you can even though you’re quite bewildered at the stories you keep hearing. 

Granted, I was lucky. My doppelganger never got drunk and danced on top of the bar. That I know of. But I was in high school when most of these events occurred and I was pretty much a GoodyTwo Shoes — very friendly and outgoing and given to completing homework on time and generally being a “good girl.” I kinda had to, didn’t I?

With all the stories you’ve read here in my column over the past two years, you understand why I had to keep a low profile. Couldn’t let things like seeing dead people, knowing the future or unknowingly casting spells when I was half -asleep get out there. Oh, no. I had to pretend to be normal. 

I guess it all started with friends getting angry with me. “Why didn’t you wave back at me?” they demanded to know. Or “Why didn’t you answer me when I was talking to you?” Or “I looked right at you and you wouldn’t smile at me.”

 I was left trying to explain as best I could that I either didn’t see them or that it wasn’t me.

Even my dad wasn’t immune. He mentioned one evening that he’d seen me driving on the interstate earlier that day. I wasn’t there. I hadn’t driven on the interstate all day. “Well, I think I ought to know my own daughter!” he huffed, annoyed. 

I did narrow her down one time to her place of work. In this case, I think she was a genuine look alike, as doppelgangers seem to be thought of more as apparitions. I was grocery shopping one afternoon and this tall man walked up to me and started chatting like we’d known each other forever. 

By this time I was in my early twenties. He saw the blank look on my face and realized it wasn’t his friend. But this turned out to be an excellent opportunity to do some detective work. I found out her name and that she worked in the Heart Tower at the local hospital.

When Dad had a heart attack a few years ago and was staying in the Heart Tower for a few days, I realized this was an excellent opportunity to see her for myself. Did she really look like me? 

She wasn’t working. Of course.

It could be worse. I’ve read harrowing tales of doppelgangers as almost an evil twin.

As I was putting the finishing touches on this column the night before my deadline, I heard a loud crash in the back of the house. The cats got up to investigate. So did I. As usual, nothing was out of place. Nothing had fallen over and no glass had shattered. I even checked the kitchen sink to see if something had fallen off the ledge and broken.

Did I mention my house is haunted sometimes? And it looks like only part of it is haunted right now. Then again, as the season grows closer to Christmas, it might be my Sexy Santa Tulpa. For any of you who missed the juicy details, go back and read last year’s Asheville Daily Planet issues for February and March 2016 —  “The Santa Claus Experiment,” Parts 1 and 2.

It chronicles my adventure when I decided to think outside the box and expand the parameters of Joshua P. Warren’s own tulpa experiment that he was creating with the listeners of the radio show “Speaking of Strange.” I can’t remember what the results of his experiment were, but mine was a resounding success! 

But I digress. We were talking about doppelgangers. I know that this other me was seen around Asheville for years, from my high school years through my early twenties. And then it just stopped. 

Some stories say if you see your doppelganger you’ll die. I’m living proof that that is not true. 

And come to think of it, a few years ago, I did come across an artist’s rendering of a fairy. Or was it an elf? I guess the only thing that matters is that she looked exactly like me! Was that the artist’s own imagination or had they seen someone who looked just like me? 

I guess I’ll never know. But one thing is certain and that is ... I’m happy my friends aren’t having sightings of “me” anymore.

Shelley Wright, an Asheville native, is a paranormal investigator. She owns and runs Nevermore Mystical Arts shop and works at Wright’s Coin Shop, both in Asheville. Wright also is a weekly participant in the “Speaking of Strange” radio show from 9 p.m. to midnight on most Saturdays on Asheville’s WWNC-AM (570).



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