Like a live poltergeist
August 15, 2007 2:50 PM   Subscribe

Phrogging - To sneak into a house and live among its occupants without their knowledge. ^ (via the Presurfer)
posted by caddis (66 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Of course, there is a decent chance this an elaborate joke. ;)
posted by caddis at 2:51 PM on August 15, 2007

wow that site sucks.
posted by mattbucher at 2:55 PM on August 15, 2007

Hey guys. What if we did a Blair Witch Project Redux in someone else's house? Wouldn't that be cool?
posted by solipsophistocracy at 2:59 PM on August 15, 2007

The site is too hard to navigate and all the videos just get stuck buffering. So, despite not being able to really view the evidence my gut says fake.
posted by elwoodwiles at 3:05 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

It's taking forever and a day to load the damn Flash site. I'm assuming this is the x-treme sport version of Hider in the House?
posted by brundlefly at 3:05 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

I see I'm not the only one that accidentally watched a few minute's of ABC's pathetic "iCaught" television show last night...
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 3:11 PM on August 15, 2007

Loading.. 17% of index
posted by dersins at 3:13 PM on August 15, 2007

Without making the investment in time to actually view the site, this actually happened to me, though I didn't call it Phrogging, I called it fucking creepy.

We were moving out of a rental house, and I went to clear the cellar, and down there amongst our crap were other people's crap. Sleeping bags, candle stubs....
posted by mattoxic at 3:15 PM on August 15, 2007

Loading.. 44% of 0
posted by dersins at 3:16 PM on August 15, 2007

It and the videos seem to load pretty quickly here on the East Coast.
posted by caddis at 3:16 PM on August 15, 2007

Loading.. 51% of 2

Of course, there is a decent chance this an elaborate joke.

Is the joke that there's no actual site here, just a loading screen?
posted by dersins at 3:18 PM on August 15, 2007 [4 favorites]

Big Deal [says the middle child]
posted by srboisvert at 3:19 PM on August 15, 2007 [5 favorites]

"I'm assuming this is the x-treme sport version of Hider in the House?"

I read that as Hitler in the House, which could either be a horror flick or a Fresh Prince of Bel Air-type sitcom.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:23 PM on August 15, 2007 [6 favorites]

posted by basicchannel at 3:26 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

I was going to make the same comment dersins.

Loading.. 11% of Index

It's currently taking 8 seconds per percent. At this rate, I should be able to see what the excitement is all about in... just shy of 12 minutes.
posted by quin at 3:27 PM on August 15, 2007

Actually, quin, it has to load at least 3 more things AFTER the index.

Possibly more. I'll let you know when if it finishes.
posted by dersins at 3:30 PM on August 15, 2007

Though, after reading the urban dictionary definition, it seems like this could be a great setup for a 911 operator: "The call came from inside the house," kinda thing.
posted by quin at 3:32 PM on August 15, 2007

That would be Hitler in tha House, mr_crash_davis.

Anyway, I gave up. Was this possibly imaginary Flash site pro or con the possibly imaginary practice?
posted by brundlefly at 3:36 PM on August 15, 2007

Middle class white chicks get all the breaks. If they get caught, all they have to do is suck a little cock. If they were young black men, best outcome is that they go to jail for burglary. Worst outcome is they get shot dead.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:37 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

Here's a YouTube page with many of the videos for those who are having trouble loading the site.
posted by caddis at 3:38 PM on August 15, 2007

posted by blue_beetle at 3:42 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

Holy hell, I waited this long to have to use this interface?

If you are 'changing channels' you have to go all the way around, you can't go back. Same with the gallery.

Any coolness this idea might have had has been lost in bad UI. So, out of spite, I'm going to guess that it's faked and they are filming the whole thing in their parents house.
posted by quin at 3:47 PM on August 15, 2007

I believe it would be Hitler in die Haus.
...only I don’t believe it would be a fist that would be extended.

I think I saw a Japanese (or Korean) film on this subject. Damned if I can remember the name. Kid learns to move in people’s shadows. Falls in love with the wife there. Gets caught, etc.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:49 PM on August 15, 2007

bullshit or not, they should be shot for shitty UI. Either way, these chicks are dead to me....
posted by Debaser626 at 3:50 PM on August 15, 2007

Smedlyman - Bin-Jip?
posted by caddis at 3:53 PM on August 15, 2007

Okay, after a random sampling of youtube videos I'm sticking with the "hoax" call. On the other hand, the videos are awfully boring and lack any bit of interesting anything, which is the strongest evidence this could be real.
posted by elwoodwiles at 3:55 PM on August 15, 2007

This description made me think of Bad Ronald, which is the most badass TV movie of the 70s. That is all.
posted by mattholomew at 3:59 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

I had this happen to me - crack dealers started living in the back room of the place I was subletting. I didn't realize it until I woke up one day with one of them outside my bedroom door. NOT COOL! NOT COOL AT ALL!
posted by The Light Fantastic at 4:01 PM on August 15, 2007

snopes doesn't know shit, i'm typing this from some old bag's basement. it's quite nice, i just pretend i'm her son and it's the seventies. when she gets all freaked out by never mind the bollocks blaring i get to scream "shoot the fook up ya bluddy coont!"
posted by andywolf at 4:01 PM on August 15, 2007

Snopes seems to think phrogging is suspicious (check James G's entry).
posted by misha at 4:02 PM on August 15, 2007 [1 favorite]

Don't miss comment #113 on snopes.
posted by psyche7 at 4:13 PM on August 15, 2007

It reminds me of the old movie called Bad Ronald, that detroyed the innocence of my youth, and made me feel unsafe in my own home.
posted by Senator at 4:13 PM on August 15, 2007

"Hitler in die Haus"

In dem Haus. Haus is neuter and "in" takes the dative when indicating location.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 4:17 PM on August 15, 2007

Mattoxic, was there access to your basement from the outside?

Anyway, this is why I have pets. No one would get away with hiding out in my apartment with them there.
posted by Liosliath at 4:21 PM on August 15, 2007

if this were a subculture i'd think punk kids would know about it. after checking several message boards i came up with nothing. then again it's been so many years i knew people that squatted and hopped trains i might not know where to look. you can't search maximum rock n' roll's website. from what people mention here it sounds like it happens on occassion, but it's not a subculture.
posted by andywolf at 4:27 PM on August 15, 2007

Andywolf, are people still squatting as much in London? I spent some time there in '91, in a lovely house near the Manor House stop (ok, it was lovely, before they painted crap all over the interior walls and crapped in corners) - and I remember there were houses everywhere that were supposedly in the same condition - still owned by the bank, but basically abandoned.
posted by Liosliath at 4:37 PM on August 15, 2007

This sounds like a really good way to get shot.
posted by Pope Guilty at 4:37 PM on August 15, 2007

there's a spy in the house of love.
posted by vronsky at 4:47 PM on August 15, 2007

caddis - yeah, I think that was it, thanks.

Dem it.

Die es ist meine Gruppe der Hunde
Meine Hunde sind im Haus!
Sie sind der Mann
Was ist obeeeeeen!?

Dunno if that can be pulled off in Arsenio speak.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:58 PM on August 15, 2007

are people still squatting as much in London?

don't know, but some friends in touring bands have played in squats over the last few years. if i remember correctly some pretty big ones. but that wasn't in london, netherlands i believe and elsewhere.
posted by andywolf at 5:04 PM on August 15, 2007

I'll see your Hitler and odd squatters and raise you a burlesque morality tale.
posted by kid ichorous at 5:15 PM on August 15, 2007

My, but that's a big, expensive camera. Not trivial to carry -- or to purchase. Look at the serious aspect ratio on that lens hood.
posted by SteelyDuran at 5:17 PM on August 15, 2007

Boring videos. When I used to hitchhike a lot, I did this a couple of times, never for more than 2 days, and mostly to have access to clean water and a warm place to sleep. Might be real.

I know people who were squatting in London as of April, very nice house close to Earl's Court. But no punk kids, a bunch of illegal immigrants from Mexico. They worked hard, and kept the house clean and tidy. It is a safe house for newly arrived Mexican illegals. They knew a similar Brazilian house close to the Bethnal Green station.
posted by Dataphage at 5:19 PM on August 15, 2007

The badge on the microphone is the giveaway. It's an HDR FX1 or some similar-looking Sony. If it really is an FX1, that's a $3,000 camcorder. For that much, they could live in a hotel for a month.
posted by SteelyDuran at 5:23 PM on August 15, 2007

Disclaimer: Please do not attempt what you are about to see at my home.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 5:27 PM on August 15, 2007

I once spent a few days staying with a friend who lived in a house with somewhere between 12 and 15 other people. More of them seemed to keep appearing. I don't think all of them knew I was staying there.
posted by yohko at 6:08 PM on August 15, 2007

This happened to me! I took off from work early one afternoon and arrived unannounced at my house around 1 pm. My wife was taking a nap so I went upstairs to see if she was sick or something. She certainly appeared sick, all flushed and short of breath. I hadn’t been in the room for more than a minute when I heard a rustling in my closet. I opened the closet door only to come face to face with a nude, out of breath, sweaty Fed Ex driver. I immediately new something wasn’t right, but now it makes sense: Phrogger!
posted by BostonJake at 6:52 PM on August 15, 2007 [6 favorites]

There are easier ways to get shot. And more interesting places to trespass.
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:15 PM on August 15, 2007

Well, Jake, somebody got phrogged.
posted by Mid at 7:20 PM on August 15, 2007

"I'm assuming this is the x-treme sport version of Hider in the House?"

I read that as Hitler in the House

Better that than "Heder in the House," which was my first glance's reading.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:35 PM on August 15, 2007

Heil, Honey, I'm Home! (youtube) (previous)
posted by gimonca at 8:37 PM on August 15, 2007

Are they trying to make hitler into a likable everyman? because really, that's disturbing.
posted by KingoftheWhales at 9:50 PM on August 15, 2007

Wow, that's really weird BostonJake. I have a totally similar story. It's from back when I worked for Fed Ex; I was Phroggering this dude's house, I totally thought he and the family were out of town, but his chick showed up, so I was hiding in the closet. She decided to take a nap, so I thought I could slip out, but she started coughing in her sleep, I realized she couldn't breath, so I gave her the Heimlich, and she kicked out a Combos that she was choking on. But, of course, that meant that I had to bail, so I was back in the closet getting ready to get dressed when this angry dude showed up.

He kicked my ass, but it was cool. His chick was all good. She lived.

And weirdly, I hooked up with his daughter a couple of weeks later in college. I totally nailed her. I mean we did some really sick shit, like Kama Sutra meets branding and Taiwanese fuck-sling chairs kind of of shit. I should probably be in jail. It was crazy hot.
posted by quin at 10:15 PM on August 15, 2007 [2 favorites]

So, what's this an add for? Because I closed it after the first three seconds...
posted by Citizen Premier at 12:30 AM on August 16, 2007

The people under the stairs
posted by Joeforking at 3:31 AM on August 16, 2007

I'll wait for Fox news to break this.
posted by furtive at 4:17 AM on August 16, 2007

Reminds me of this website.
posted by iviken at 6:02 AM on August 16, 2007

As odd as this sounds, something similar happened to one of my neighbors. This little group of teen daredevils had, over a period of a year or more, been sneaking into her house while she and her partner were at work. The kids were busted when the partner came home unexpectedly at noon and found the kids engaged in some lovin' in the bedroom. Shots were fired, noone was hurt, but the kids (honor students!) were caught by the local cops. I'm still at a loss to understand how they got in and why they were compelled to do it at all. The lure of the taboo and the thrill of shattering boundries, I guess.
posted by maryh at 6:25 AM on August 16, 2007

Hm. I call bullshit on the basis of the "married couple, no kids, guest bathroom is never used" line alone.

When we have more than one bathroom, my wife takes over one of them (typically the guest bathroom) because it's easier to get ready for the day when you have your own space, and she hates fighting over access to the sink.

Second, when I get home, I notice small things, for example yesterday a rug was out of place (landlord needed to enter, moved rug accidentally, tried to put it back where we had it to be polite) You get a feel for how you left your house. When stuff is out of place - even slightly out of place - you tend to pick up on that. Unless a stranger spends a very long time simply observing you and your lifestyle he/she isn't going to be able to put your home back the way you had it without you noticing that something is up. (Unless of course you're just sort of oblivious.)

With someone actually living in your house? Christ. I didn't watch the videos, but I imagine that things would get used. Towels, dishes, that sort of thing. Strange hairs in the sink or tub. I don't think we'd need a forensics team to detect that a stranger had been around.
posted by caution live frogs at 7:19 AM on August 16, 2007

OK, I watched the single linked video that showed the camera - didn't watch anything on the actual site.
posted by caution live frogs at 7:20 AM on August 16, 2007

What I want to know, BostonJake and quin, is how do you keep your FedEx nametag on when you're naked?

Tattooed on the back of the neck.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:50 AM on August 16, 2007

Caution live frogs: regarding things out of place, my wife once played a pretty horrible trick on me. I had just finished reading "The Gift of Fear" on her recommendation a day prior, and shortly after she came home from work, she put a stuffed dog on top of my monitor. The monitor has various stuffed animals, so it wasn't that out of place. But when I asked her about it, she perfectly pretended that she had no idea about it. Making it worse, she commented, "But hadn't you previously left it in my bathroom?" - her bathroom was the on suite one that I didn't use. Because of her acting, combined with the context queuing from Gavin deBecker, I grabbed a knife, and her arm, and started pulling my wife out of the house. It wasn't until we got to the door that my wife exploded in laughter.

And yet she wonders why I have no pity for the times that I give in to the compulsion of hiding behind corners, then jumping out in front of her while yelling, "Boo!"
posted by nobeagle at 10:08 AM on August 16, 2007

the PHROGGERS drained the fishtank! of course!
posted by dubold at 11:32 AM on August 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

"Are they trying to make hitler into a likable everyman? because really, that's disturbing."

No, no, no, merely saying that Hitler is a likeable everyman compared to Arsenio when he had his show.

Hmm...wonder if you could reverse this. Someone sneaks into your house, but you know they are there, but they don’t know you know....that’d be cool. Fake all kinds of bizarre stuff, make phone calls to your “superior” about the Johnsons knowing about the UFOs and such. Fake a suicide. Black magic rituals and blood sacrifices. Pod people (ala’ Body Snatchers). Etc.
Lotta room there.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:12 PM on August 16, 2007

I, for one, thought they were charming. But the lack of obsessively minimal movement and other careless things put the veracity of everything into doubt.

Like the jewelry first instinct would be to level out the contents so it wouldn't look as if it was on it's side.

But those girls can haunt me any day.
posted by cowbellemoo at 1:36 AM on August 17, 2007

I actually wide-eyed believed it until I came back and read the comments here.

Then I looked at this:
"What I didn't expect is for them to misinterpret what I was asking of them and SHOOT THE WHOLE THING. Yes, they thought I expected them to shoot their entire experience and that footage would be "Living With Strangers". Imagine my surprise when they gave me 5 tapes documenting the 5 days they spent in some stranger's house."

o rly? gosh, what a lucky accident! imagine my surprise, indeed. why would two girls put their whole lifestyle in danger by revealing themselves full-face to a camera for a full five days? bah.
posted by laconic titan at 7:20 AM on August 17, 2007

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