Written by Lou Conran

Voices

A Brew With Lou: Spooky

In her latest dispatch from the frontline of chitchat, comedian Lou Conran talks about all the dead people she sees. No, wait, come back…

Illustration by Louise Boulter.

Illustration by Louise Boulter.

I went to see this clairvoyant the other day.

I know. I know.

But when I was growing up (I say when I was…) I was that odd kid at school that most people avoided because they didn’t understand them. At first school, I was branded weird by my other classmates because I wanted to play offices and not do my work. I mean, there’s nothing weird in that, is there? If anything, it shows ingenuity. That’s how you get your schoolwork done, by pretending you’re the CEO of a corporation and getting the others on the table to do it for you. That’s clever, not weird.

Anyway, I’m waffling on because I’m trying to avoid getting to the point because I said I’d write about it and now in hindsight, I am worried you’re all going to think I’m completely bonkers and I’m not entirely sure I want to go back to those playground days where you all avoid me. But I’ve started now so you’re going to have to bear with me.

I was also the weird one because I would see things others couldn’t see. I would hear things others couldn’t hear and I would have full conversations with people who were dead.

I know.

It’s not my fault. I didn’t understand it wasn’t ‘normal’. I didn’t understand that nobody else was experiencing what I was experiencing. As the years went on the comments about me being a weirdo stopped but the weird stuff didn’t. I almost stopped noticing that little things that would go missing in my room and reappear in completely random places. I stopped noticing the chatting I could hear and all the other strange and wonderful things that went with being a weirdo. Until I started finding the dead bodies.

I know. I know.

I’d just get up in the morning, go about my daily business, and hey presto, I’d find a dead body. Some would say that’s just down to bad luck but what I failed to notice, until the third one, was the feeling I had in the morning before I found them. The sense of knowing. Knowing I was going to find another one. And this sense of knowing started to appear quite a lot with other things in my life. Like knowing every time my grandad was poorly. He lived miles away but I’d always get a sense that we had to go and see him and make sure he was OK. Knowing when my car was going to break down. Knowing when boyfriends were cheating. Knowing that I shouldn’t have another slice of cake.

I’ve always been into Tarot but you can’t read for yourself because nine times out of ten you end up trying to fit it into your life and trying to fit your life around what they say. But I’ve been to see loads of mediums. And I find them fascinating. I find their individual process fascinating but what I find more interesting is watching them. You can spot a shitester a mile off. (I know, I know, I can hear what you’re saying…)

“Sometimes I’ll be sat with someone and I’ll get the chatter in my head and I know I need to pass something on but this is generally only when it’s really important for me to pass on. I don’t charge for the privilege.”

Channel 4’s recent My Psychic Life was hilarious. It shouldn’t have been. It was hilarious for all the wrong reasons and those of us that are weirdos have battle enough with people thinking that we’re all charlatans, without the likes of programmes like that making a mockery of something that is an ancient process.

I did an Edinburgh show about my experiences and it was quite revealing how many of my friends or audience members who don’t believe in it came up to me afterwards and said, “I don’t believe in any of this. But I have seen a ghost.” Right.

My mum’s a weirdo too. Unbeknown to me she even went to a college for weirdoes, to hone and understand her ‘skills’. She never told me she went because neither of us talked to the other one about what was going on. Well, you don’t really. It’s not really done over breakfast, is it? “Morning. Can I have cornflakes? Oh by the way Nanny was in the living room earlier standing by her ashes. Pass the milk.”

Anyway, eventually I had an incident with a man getting into my bed (not unusual at the time but this one was dead), a dead man standing in the corner of my room for three days (this was unusual) and the water in my bed which I thought was piss until I licked it. My bedroom door was also opening and closing in the night and someone was walking around in the hallway (I lived on my own). So I told my mum and she took me to a college for weirdoes near Stansted. We bonded over the weird shit, things calmed down and for the first time in years I was able to start sleeping without a light on.

Sometimes I’ll be sat with someone and I’ll get the chatter in my head and I know I need to pass something on but this is generally only when it’s really important for me to pass on. I don’t charge for the privilege.

Anyway, so I went to see this clairvoyant the other day and she basically started throwing in names. Who’s Andy? He’s got a camera. Who’s Cheryl? She’s something to do with the stage. Your grandad says you make people laugh.

I was quite taken aback, until it dawned on me that when I booked my appointment I had the link to my website on the email, and the first thing she’ll have spotted would be the pictures taken by Andy. And my acting agent is called Cheryl. And the whole website is about my comedy. Granted, she said things that were also so randomly spot-on it was spooky but I came away from the whole session convinced that she’d been on my website and that really pissed me off.

Anyway. Congratulations. You’re still reading this and haven’t thrown your laptop across the room in despair at how bonkers I am. I love hearing about other people’s experiences, so please do talk to me on Twitter. Whether you’re alive or otherwise.

@louconran

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Written by Lou Conran

Lou is a comedian, writer, actor, lover of curry and cheese, and is also a giant simple child.