My Amityville Hopefull


I've now had over twenty friends forwarding me the news that 108 Ocean Avenue (formerly known as 112) is back on the market.

I guess I should have expected the "you should buy it, this time" outpouring of encouragement, as I'm known as a bit of a historian on the property. 

Unfortunately, I'm short the $850,000 asking price. 

My fascination with this "most haunted house in America" began as a kid, after having older cousins report a play-by-play of the popular 1979 movie. In the pre-VHS era, my curiosity was quickly fed by the Jay Anson novel that spawned the hysteria, and spread the mystery. 

Me, age 6, starting a lifetime obsession with Haunted Homes

Years of sequels, remakes, talk shows, novels, articles and documentaries only continued my obsession with the bizarre back-story of a seemingly innocent Dutch Colonial style home, that just happened to have a gate-way to Hell in the basement.

So, in 2010, when the house was previously purchased, an under the radar tag sale (which quickly became very not-under-the-radar) gave me a chance to actually go into the property. 

I purchased a rug from the very room Father Ralph J. Pecoraro was supposedly ordered to "get out" by a swarm of flies. Or so the story goes. 

Here's the deal though. I don't actually believe any of the American horror story accounts of this address. It's just an absolutely beautiful home on a potentially quiet street that's been plagued by a lot of lore since the very tragic DeFeo family murders in November of 1974. 

I may be a skeptic that "wants to believe," but after a lifetime of digesting each and every fact about the so-called "Amityville Horror" that George and Kathy Lutz most likely concocted, my recent fascination has been in debunking much of the myth. 

If I had the financial ability to purchase the house, I would honestly strive to make the myth go away. 

Hollywood will continue to churn out "based on a true story" accounts of possession and hauntings. 
Conjuring 2 is at the top of the box office right now, and another Amityville reboot is on the way after 12(!) sequels, spinoffs and remakes of the original film. 

It seems to me the easiest way to exorcise the demons of 108 Ocean Avenue would be to simply show that they don't exist in the first place. 

Live-streaming tech has given us the ability to be anywhere in the world, and VR/360 video takes the experience even further. 

I'd set up a constant stream from every room and every angle of the house, to satisfy our [still] Big Brother obsessed 24/7 media consuming culture. Driven by the appeal of exploitation, I guarantee the whole experiment would quickly become as eventful as Geraldo's Mystery of Al Capone's Vaults

But we love our perpetual myths, and the unfortunate souls who do purchase the house will be haunted by them. The town will always be synonymous with the home's fictionalized, but bestselling backstory. 

If anyone does have an extra $850,000 to loan me, I pledge my best to clean the home's past of posturing poltergeists.