“It was a rather strange doll made out of coconuts. What was really sort of terrifying or horrifying or interesting was it had actual human teeth.”
Opening line for a new horror movie? Worse. It’s a real story from a beachcomber walking along a beach in Cape Canaveral, Florida, who found the creepy doll, took some selfies with it, and then …
Sorry, you’ll have to wait till Act 2 for that exposition.
“It’s bad juju.”
Bruce Robertson told local media he found the figure at Cherie Down Park. Besides the human teeth, the doll had parts of eight arms and/or legs with feathers on them and what appeared to Robertson to be a covering of snakeskin. (See a picture here.) Robertson told reporters it was bad “juju” – a word that means “evil spirit” in the Nigerian language of Hausa. In fact, he did some research and thinks what he found was a depiction of an African spider god known as Anansi.
“It was the God of slaves that came from Ghana to the Caribbean and they used it for good luck and protection.”
That story would make sense, since Anansi is often referred to as the King of Stories. Originating in Ghana, Anasi is known as a trickster, the child of Mother Earth (Asaase Yaa) and Father Sky (Nyame), and is generally depicted as a spider with a human face or a man with eight legs. The stories of this storyteller spread from Ghana across West Africa and were brought to the Americas by slaves, continuing the tradition in many areas, especially Jamaica. Perhaps Ansani’s his most famous tale is how he brought wisdom to the world – by taking a pot full of wisdom to the top of a tree and tossing the contents to the ground, thereby spreading it unevenly across humanity. That doesn’t sound so bad, does it?
“This right here is creepy.”
A local news show took a picture of the doll to Michelle Davis, owner of the Essence of Knowledge Urban Bookstore and Art Gallery in Cocoa, Florida, and she had an entirely different interpretation of the “creepy” doll. In Davis’ opinion, the figure is a voodoo doll that may have once been covered with human skin, not snakeskin, and could be a modern creation of the voodoo culture that is still practiced in the area.
“They do it here in Cocoa. They do it all over in Florida, Louisiana, New Orleans. Voodoo is real.”
If voodoo is real and the doll is part of it, maybe Robertson should do us all a favor and destroy it … you know, just in case. Sorry, welcome to Act 2 … it’s too late.
“Robertson said he dropped it back in the ocean because other beachgoers told him it was a voodoo doll and it should be destroyed, not saved.”
So, a voodoo doll with human teeth and possibly human skin is floating around in the ocean off the coast of Florida. What could possibly go wrong? Then again, we’re talking about Florida. What HASN’T gone wrong yet?
“It’s bad juju.”
When in doubt, blame the voodoo doll.