TELEPHONE INTERVIEW / INTERVIEW — TAPE #25, SIDE #1
Q: Mark Russell Bell
F: Marla Ward—nicknamed Fae—(one of the daughters, 38)
S: Steve Eller (Twyla’s husband, 26)
T: Twyla Eller (youngest daughter, 23)
H: Faith Haaz (Hotline Coordinator)
B: Bobby (Blue Cross of California representative)
Q: Hi, Fae.
Q: I think Michael was just moving (“YEAH”) — He practically handed me the listening device just about.
Q: I guess He wants me to interview you too.
F: Oh. Okay. (small laugh)
Q: So, how’s everything going?
F: Well, weird. Michael called me yesterday at 1:38 in the morning.
Q: What did he say?
F: Well, he told me that Twyla was real sick. He said, “I NEED SOME MONEY. HURRY.” And I thought, “Oh my gosh. Something is wrong.” I called Mama at about eight o’clock before going to work. I told her about Michael calling and I said, “Mom, you need to call Twyla.” Well, she called Twyla and sure enough (“UH”) Twyla had the flu. And, oh man, it was strange. He had never called me before like that. And he sounded like he was really scared.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE UNATTRIBUTED HEARTBEAT SOUND ENDS HERE.)
F: So he knew something was wrong with Twyla.
Q: She had the flu. I have a bad cold/flu myself.
F: Yeah. You sound like you do.
Q: But He turned on my heater for me so I don’t think He’s responsible.
F: Oh, really?
Q: Yeah. I don’t think He’s responsible for Twyla either. (“I MEAN”) Some people would probably accuse Him as being responsible for HIV. (“YEAH”)
Q: But, of course, He’s not. (“NO”)
F: No, that’s true. (“UM I”) Well, the night before I got that call from Michael. I had talked to Twyla and she said she thought she was getting the flu. She said her stomach hurt. She felt like she had to vomit. And I said, “Well, yeah, it sounds like you’ve got the flu because I’ve already had it.” And later Michael called me and told me she was real sick. Oh gosh. (“UM-HUH”) I couldn’t believe it, Mark. It flipped me out.
Q: What did He sound like? What was the tone of His voice?
F: Well, it was kind of high-pitched like it usually is. And then now this is what’s so weird. It sounds (“IT’S IN”) just like a little kid. Like a little boy.
F: But then he had the high-pitched voice.
Q: It changes, doesn’t it?
F: It does.
Q: That’s what I’ve really become accustomed to while listening to the microcassettes. He’ll change from a little boy, one moment giggling usually — to more of an adult character who’s very — (“HE’S”) what’s the word for it? Sort of sarcastic. (“UH-HUH”)
F: Um-huh. That’s (“SO”) the word I would use.
Q: And then there’s this really whispery voice.
F: Yeah, it’s like sometimes he doesn’t really want you to hear what he’s saying.
Q: It’s real low-pitched and whispery — like something out of a poltergeist movie.
F: Yeah. That’s exactly what I — ooh, I don’t know. Somehow it seems —
Q: Rachel sounds very boyish too. Her voice is very masculine.
F: Um-huh. (“DO”)
Q: Have you ever heard Rachel?
F: I heard her one time and after that I didn’t want to hear her again. Because it scared me worse than it did the first time I talked to Michael. (“NO” “YEAH”)
Q: See — (“UH-HUH”) their voices are pretty clear on the tapes that I’m transcribing. (“OHH”) But I don’t bother to say exactly who is who because that’s just too hard. And there are a lot of different unattributed sounds. There are bowling sounds and tennis sounds. Many of them repeat and some of them I can’t even quite tell what they are so I just try my best to find some description for them. (“UH-HUH”) There are a lot of clock sounds.
F: Oh really?
Q: There are tick tock noises and (“UH-HUH”) clock hand clicking. (“UH-HUH”) In modern technology most clocks don’t make any noise now but these sounds definitely relate to clocks.
F: Oh gosh. (“TIME” “OH GOSH”)
Q: That’s sort of scary, isn’t it? (“NO”) That’s why I keep thinking, “I have to finish this book.” But I know the book will be finished when it finishes. (“FAE”)
F: Yeah, that’s true.
Q: But I mean He definitely does know what’s going to happen. No one else does.
F: What did Mama tell you about him stealing her Social Security money? Oh man. I couldn’t believe that. (“WELL”) Paul said to Mama, “Well, you’re going to get some — (“THAT”) $7,000 off that show.” And when Mama recently talked to Paul, he said, “No, it’s already done and over with but you’re not going to get anything out (“RIGHT”) of it.” And I thought, “God, after them telling her that and then lying about it.” That kind of made me mad because Mom and them were with them for that month.
Q: Well, maybe we’ll still get a book deal. I never did hear back from Simon & Schuster. (“UH-UH”) At least not yet. I was telling Maxine I might go ahead and self-publish the first edition of the book.
F: Oh yeah.
Q: So, anyway, I’ll talk to (“HER TO MORE”) her more about that. (“OH”) I don’t think I have much of a choice because the material is so difficult. I think that will help get publicity if I self-publish the first edition and start circulating it. I think maybe that’s the way of going. Of course, Michael did say that a big movie would be made. He didn’t really say what would happen to the book.
F: Yeah, that’s true. (“I MEAN”)
Q: You probably will get rich off the movie but the book might not be a big money-making proposition. But it might lead to the movie. Who knows?
Q: Anyway, I’m working hard. Are you with Maxine now?
F: No, I’m at home.
Q: I’ve interviewed just about everyone today except for Kim and Twyla’s going to call me later, I think.
F: I called her a few minutes ago and they weren’t home. (“YEAH”)
Q: And I spoke to Kim the last time I called so she sounds good too. It’s a neat family.
F: Oh thanks.
Q: But do you believe that Michael’s living with me here in my condo?
F: Yeah. I believe he could because he said he could travel 500 miles an hour.
Q: And He can be in two places at the same time. But none of my friends — nobody I know believes me. About anything.
Q: I mean I have the Declaration of Independence. I have the Ark of the Covenant. (“THEY”) They can see them with their own eyes. James knocked on the ark to see that it wasn’t wood. I mean they won’t believe it. I probably wouldn’t believe it either unless everything else hadn’t happened.
F: That’s true. I probably wouldn’t either if I hadn’t seen it or if I didn’t know it for myself. But there’s a bunch of people at my work who are really interested in it. And my boss said, “Well, I didn’t believe in it. After I saw that show, I want to go there tomorrow. I believe now.”
Q: I think the chair moving really convinced a lot of people.
F: That’s what convinced him. That’s what really got to him.
Q: And the battery going dead.
F: Now that was weird. (“WELL”) He can do just about anything he wants.
Q: Well, when I told Maxine and Twyla that Michael and I almost had sex, they didn’t believe me. I mean, of course, I don’t blame them. But it’s true.
F: Well, I believe you. Because let’s say anything can happen with him.
Q: I know.
F: I mean anything.
Q: So I definitely think the book is going to be a great read. Jut how much money it makes is a big question at this time. (“YEAH”)
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE FOLLOWING PERTAINS TO THE TAPE SIDE I ACCIDENTALLY TAPED OVER ALTHOUGH I DIDN’T REALIZE THAT AT THE TIME OF THIS RECORDING.)
Q: (speaking into tape recorder) It’s Thursday morning. The first thing I want to do is clear up one of the things I said on Tuesday about proving love. He is definitely proving His love to me every day. And every day I remember past events in my life where He’s proven His love. It’s just that sometimes I get frustrated and forget. I just get too impatient. Some things take time. Today, I’m going to schedule an appointment with my photographer to have some pictures made of the Declaration of Independence. Also, I’m going to learn the results of my Hotline test today and I need to buy a normal cassette transcribing machine for the tapes I had transferred onto regular cassettes. I also have the cassette from psychic Maria Papapetros to transcribe. It was taped on January 15, 1991.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: AFTER LISTENING TO THE TAPE OF MARIA’S PSYCHIC READING I DECIDED NOT TO INCLUDE IT IN MY BOOK AS IT IS FAIRLY MUNDANE OTHER THAN THE INCIDENTS WHERE MICHAEL CAN BE HEARD. THE FOLLOWING INTERVIEW IS WITH TWYLA.)
S: Mm Hello?
Q: Oh, hi. Is Twyla there?
S: Mm who is it?
Q: Oh, it’s Mark. I hope I didn’t wake you.
S: Ohh we came in late (last) night.
Q: Oh dear.
S: (to Twyla) On the phone. (to me) How you doing?
Q: Oh, very good.
S: Hold on just a minute.
Q: Okay. (“HUMMPPH”)
( . . . )
Q: Oh hi Twyla?
Q: Did you see Maxine last night?
T: No, I (“OH”) was up here.
Q: Oh. They thought you might be coming by. I spoke to Maxine, Brenda, Fae and Bill. And I also wanted to get your response to the special (“HUH”) for the book. What did you think?
T: Of the show? I thought it was okay. I think it could have been better.
Q: Well, yeah. I mentioned to Maxine (“YOU KNOW THEY”) they didn’t use any make-up on you and used such harsh lighting. You’re much prettier than someone could tell from watching the special.
T: Oh, well, thank you for that.
Q: Other than that I thought it was alright. (“I THOUGHT SO”) They’re totally — (“WATER”) I mean it was poltergeist hysteria.
T: Um-huh. (“BUT IT STI”)
Q: It was better than I thought it would be. (“SO ANYWAY”) Any — so what do you think?
T: I thought it was — (“DUMB”) it was good, yeah.
Q: No, be honest.
T: It was — (“YEAH”) it was okay but it could have been better. It could have been longer. I don’t think it was long enough. I don’t think they had enough details for it to be good.
Q: Well, they definitely focused on the poltergeist aspect as opposed to even mentioning aliens, angels or whatever. Do you have any questions or have you seen any good videos recently? (“TURN IT UP”)
T: I saw “Casper” last night.
Q: What did you think of “Casper” (“PFFFT”) since you have the real Casper living with you — us, I should say. (“GOOD”)
T: It’s a good movie. (“ENJOYED IT”)
Q: That’s all?
Q: Okay. (“HI”) Did he remind you of Michael in any way? (“YEAH”)
T: His mischievousness. (“UH-HUH”)
Q: Um-huh. Yeah, he opened the security parking gate here (“YOU KNOW”) in our garage area. We have one of those electric gates. I didn’t have to push the clicker. It just opened for me last night.
T: I know.
Q: He’s done that for you before too?
T: He was playing and messed with our headlights last night. He turned them on.
Q: He’s always up to something. So that’s good. Okay, well, I just wanted to say hello. Did I mention to you about the Declaration of Independence?
Q: Last weekend, I was shopping at an antique store and I bought the original Declaration of Independence that had been lost for centuries. I paid $45.
Q: Yeah. I contacted the chief curator at Independence Hall and I’m going to have it photographed today to see if I can (“PSSST”) sell it for charity. I think I’m going to donate the money from the sale of this one to the people of Bosnia. So now I have the Declaration of Independence and the Ark of the Covenant. (“TOO”)
T: Did you find out if it was really the Ark of the Covenant?
Q: What do you think?
T: I don’t know.
Q: There’s no doubt in my mind but whether anyone else in the world ever believes it is another matter. I mean you really can tell by looking at it. I did send photos to Sotheby’s but forget it. (“WELL MAYBE THEY’LL”) Maybe they’ll be more open to it once it’s revealed that I have the original Declaration of Independence.
T: Yeah, really.
Q: So everything’s going very well. (“AND”) How are you? (“UH-OH”) You have the flu or a cold?
Q: So do I, as if you can’t tell. (“YOU KNOW”) In the original Bell case, people did have bronchial problems.
T: Uh-huh. (“AND I”)
Q: After thinking about it, it’s unusual because for many years I never had anything wrong with me whatsoever. (“UH-UH”) I even coughed up what looked like a small piece of bone once. It seems like there were occasions when healing was definitely going on. And I’ve never had to go to the hospital once. But recently in the past few years I’ve had a lot of colds and flu so maybe this is Entity-related.
T: Could be. Brenda has bronchitis. (“UM-HUH”)
Q: Really? Well, but she smokes.
T: Uh-huh. (“PLEASE”)
Q: Don’t let Brenda or Maxine smoke.
T: Oh, I can’t stop them. I’ve tried and tried.
Q: I know. On one of the tapes there’s a spirit message that eventually Maxine will die of cancer.
T: She’s smoked since she was about thirteen.
Q: So eventually it looks like she’s going to get lung cancer. Of course, don’t mention that to her — it’d be — oops.
T: Yeah, I won’t. I wouldn’t want them to hear —
Q: He just took out my earpiece.
T: I thought they should have mentioned on the special that I was married because I ended up getting that terrible phone call.
Q: Oh, tell me about it.
T: A perverted phone call.
Q: That’s what happened to a friend of Flannery O’Connor’s — and the author commented about it in a letter right before she died. Tell me about it.
T: Well, I was at Mom’s. The phone rang and she answered it and they asked for ‘Twilla.’ I guess he didn’t even know how to pronounce my name. So I go to the phone and Steve calls me Twilla sometimes so I thought —
Q: Uh-oh. I think this is a Michael call.
T: No, it was a real man.
Q: Well, then how did he know Twilla?
T: He couldn’t pronounce Twyla. Because it looks like Twilla.
Q: Okay. (“DON’T LOOK AT MEAN TO”) Well, He — (“YOU KNOW”) okay, fine. I don’t think it’s Michael because Michael wouldn’t do something mean like that. (“NO”)
T: And he said that he heard girls start having sex at eleven and thirteen years old and start giving head that early. And I said, “Well, I don’t know anything about it because I don’t do that.” He said, “Well, there’s nothing I can do for you?” And I said, “No, I’m married.” And he kind of got mad at me. He said, “Well, I’m going to come down there and I’m going to fuck you.” And I said, “I don’t think so.” He said, “You just wait. I’ll be down there to fuck you.” And he said he was from Arkansas and he was twenty-seven years old. And I said, “You son of a bitch, my husband will kill you if you come down here.” I hung up on him.
Q: Good for you. (“BECAUSE THAT”)
T: I expect those kind of calls.
Q: I guess you should have an unlisted number.
T: Yeah. Mine is. Mother’s isn’t. He just called at Mother’s house and I happened to be there. My number isn’t listed. Thank goodness.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I RECORDED THE FOLLOWING INTERVIEW IN THE OFFICE OF FAITH HAAZ, HOTLINE COORDINATOR OF THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA HIV/AIDS HOTLINE.)
Q: I just found out I received 90% —
H: (small laugh)
Q: — on my test to join the HIV/AIDS Hotline so I’m very thrilled. This is one of my most fulfilling achievements in my life. I’m here with Faith, my instructor who did a wonderful job. Of course, I was working on a book at the time which had to do with, as you know, the paranormal so this was a good way of putting that aside for a little while. Do you have anything to say?
H: I — (“YES LET ME THINK FIRST”) I really do think that you will make an excellent addition to the Hotline. I think that you’re outgoing and happy to talk and happy to listen. And it was a small, cozy class that I think went together well. I expect good things from (“YEAH”) this class and from you. (“THINK”) And I’m glad to see you around. (“UH-HUH” “RIGHT AND WHO”)
Q: So the next time you call the Hotline you might get me. (“UM-HUH”) And last night we celebrated by going to Canter’s, which was fun. Did you notice that I gave money to that homeless man outside?
H: I didn’t.
Q: I did and I gave him the 800 number for community services, which is something I always do.
Q: That’s another one of the themes in my book. And, of course, it is about the paranormal and there were a few things that happened in class as I told you. Like the time you heard that box shake a little bit and you thought your foot had kicked it. And, of course, the lights went out that last class session which was a little strange but probably there’s a good reason for that too.
Q: And do you remember one time we were in the room where we took the test and we heard a bell sound coming from some other room? One of the early classes? It sounded like telephone ringing coming from somewhere. You remember that, don’t you?
H: When we were in this room? (“NO NO OH REALLY”)
Q: No, not this room — in the classroom.
H: Oh oh oh.
Q: There were these strange bell noises going on. Well, you do remember there was one time when I was in the group with John and Cedric. And somebody said “wolfing” or “rolfing” or whatever. And none of us could remember who had said that. It might have been Spirit-related.
Q: Believe it or not. As you know, I mentioned in class that I — (“THAT”) I might have the angel Michael in my life. There was a special on TV about it last week — you probably didn’t watch it. None of my friends watched it that I told to watch it. So you probably didn’t watch it either. I understand. And, also, remember the time that the tape recorder mysteriously stopped playing? (“AND WRITTEN”) I told Michelle I thought the battery was dead. I’ve experienced that myself sometimes and that might be Entity-related as well.
H: The batteries dying?
Q: Yes. Because the only time it’s ever happened to me when I was interviewing was once when I was in a therapy session and it happened. Anyway, it’s very unusual. I have phenomena going on all the time but it’s good phenomena so don’t worry about it here. As you know, I leave that in the outside world and I don’t bring it in with me. I just relegate it to my book.
Q: Because I don’t want to freak out people. (“RIGHT” “I THOUGHT”) But class was great. I loved making those drawings during that one exercise. (“GOOD”) Do you remember my two big hearts that I drew?
H: Absolutely. (“THIS”)
Q: To symbolize God is love and myself going to joining Him sometime. You might have missed some of the subtle symbolic meanings. (“BUT”) I traded it with Eduardo and isn’t this pretty? What he drew?
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I HAD PLACED THE DRAWING IN THE PLASTIC OVERLEAF OF MY NOTEBOOK. THE EXERCISE ENTAILED DEPICTING OUR BELIEFS OF LIFE AFTER DEATH.)
H: He — absolutely.
Q: Will you describe it? (“LOVE EVERY BIT OF THIS ONE”)
H: Well, I mean — from what Eduardo — actually you should probably describe it. (“OKAY” “BECAUSE HE’S GOING TO REMEMBER THAT”)
Q: Well, it looks like Jesus, doesn’t it? It looks like Jesus and I don’t know if this is me or Eduardo with him. But (“I DON’T KNOW”) I guess this is the dove that symbolizes everlasting life or the soul. (“ANYWAY”) It’s a very, very beautiful rendition of Jesus. I’d say it was almost professional quality. He’s a very good artist.
Q: So, anyway, I got a kick out of that. Of course, your drawing was a little bit more —
Q: — disturbing because it was all black with one little, teeny blue line in it. And I don’t mean black — I mean really hard and negative black. And this is a lady who once wanted to be — what did you want to be at one point?
H: A rabbi.
Q: A rabbi. So you learned a lot about religion?
Q: Did you ever study Son of Man? (“NO”)
Q: No. Okay. I guess you wouldn’t — (“JEW”) being Jewish.
H: Um-huh. (“THAT NOT AND THAT’S”)
Q: That’s more of a Christian theme.
H: Um-huh. (“OHH”)
Q: By the way I was going through my closet —
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I WAS TRYING TO DISTINGUISH THESE UNATTRIBUTED SOUNDS JUST PRIOR TO MY TRANSCRIBING MACHINE HEAD PHONES FAILING. WHEN I FIRST HEARD THESE SOUNDS THEY ALMOST SOUNDED LIKE A VOICE SAYING “BIG BEN” OR “PIGPEN” ON MY PEARLCORDER L200 TAPE RECORDER.)
Q: — as you can tell by my cap. I noticed that I have a lot of extra movie tie-in caps from working at Paramount.
Q: So I thought — I know you go to baseball games. You mentioned it once I think. No?
Q: Would you like one?
H: Well, I’m sure we can use them for something.
Q: Well, I’ll give this one to you. I thought this one — (“WELL”) I have “Major League,” —
Q: — “Clear and Present Danger” — there are Paramount tie-ins too.
Q: Get it? Paramount — the mountain. There’s a religious tie-in. So I also have “The Hunt for Red October.” Actually, I think I was going to give these two to William. (“GREAT” “BECAUSE THEY’RE MORE — THEY’RE MORE — THEY’RE MORE”) I think they’re more like William. I mean, anyway —
Q: — so I’ll give you this one because I don’t need it anymore. And if you ever go to an athletic event you can wear it. (“GREAT”) And you can remember me. (“AND I” “THANK YOU”) And now that I passed my test it’s not like I’m offering you a bribe.
Q: My book is a comedy. (“I DON’T THINK SO”) Right? And you do comedy too. Stand-up?
H: A little bit. (“YEAH”)
Q: So that’s probably why we get along so well. Because we have these great senses of humor.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I TURNED ON MY TAPE RECORDER WITHOUT THE LISTENING DEVICE ATTACHED WHEN I CALLED CPC ALHAMBRA ON DECEMBER 7.)
Q: Hello, Pam at CPC Alhambra. Can I have Melissa in Medical Records? . . . Hello, is Melissa there? Oh, I’m very upset because she promised to send my case files to my psychiatrist over a month ago and my psychiatrist still hasn’t received it. . . . Mark Russell. Yes. My psychiatrist and I sent the original to her and she had received it. She said that at one point it had been mailed out but my psychiatrist never received it, so she said she was going to send it out again. . . . No, just five days in August. . . . Correct. Okay. . . . Yes. My date of birth is eight-eight. (sighs) (while on hold —) I can’t believe Melissa no longer works there. (sighs) My book is turning out to be an expose on the mental health industry. I can hear Pam talking on the other line. She must be totally overworked and crazed. I feel so sorry for people who work in these institutes. (“NO”) Yes. Oh, that’s so nice of you. I know you must be totally overworked. Oh, I really appreciate it. Oh, and by the way, as Melissa had asked, I had called (“THE”) Leslie Morris (“TO”) about transcripts or tapes of our taped interviews but he never called me back and I think that’s been over a week as well. Can you speak to him about that? . . . Okay, great, because he’s not returning my calls and my shrink would like to have either a transcript or the tapes as I’m legally entitled. (“OKAY”) It’s for a case study. Okay, thank you. Okay, bye.
( . . . )
Q: (speaking into tape recorder) By the way, at Canter’s last night we were discussing politics and I mentioned that I thought Colin Powell had a good chance of becoming the next President of the United States even though right now he’s not in the race he says. I also mentioned some privileged information about Mrs. Clinton to William and Faith and the other people who were there.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: THE FOLLOWING CONVERSATION IS WITH BOBBY, A BLUE CROSS OF CALIFORNIA REPRESENTATIVE.)
B: Hello, this is Bobby. How may I help you?
Q: Oh, hi, Bobby. This is Mark G. Russell.
B: Oh, yeah. I remember you.
Q: Thank you. Anyway, I’m recording this call because I have to request official verification that Blue Cross isn’t paying my CPC Alhambra bill — my deductible isn’t good or whatever.
B: . . . saying that —
Q: Just what the status is. I haven’t received anything in writing from Blue Cross and I don’t understand. I thought I had a thousand dollar deductible.
B: Yes, you have satisfied that one.
B: You already satisfied that one, sir. (“I DON’T”)
Q: Please don’t tell me now. I need it in writing to pass on to my attorney.
Q: Okay? Capisce?
B: Okay. (“SO WHAT”) Basically what you need is certification saying that —
Q: No. I’m telling you I want verification from you. Do you understand?
B: Yes. You need —
Q: Send me verification as to the status of my account so I can pass it on to my attorney. Is that alright? (“OKAY”)
B: So you want it in writing?
Q: Because I’m going to have a lawsuit.
Q: Because Blue Cross is not giving me mental health benefits when I was committed against my will to a mental institution. I didn’t ask to go there.
Q: The fact that Blue Cross isn’t paying mental benefits when it’s something beyond my control is not fair. I paid Blue Cross for ten years in different ways; sometimes under the Motion Picture Health and Welfare Fund, sometimes under an individual account. And the first time I have anything more serious than — I had an infected cyst in my neck once — the first time I had something major happen, which is basically my friends had me committed to a mental institution for five days, Blue Cross isn’t paying. And it’s fucked is what it is.
Q: I’m beginning to feel very overwhelmed again and it’s all because of Blue Cross.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: SOON AFTER THIS, MY THERAPIST DID RECEIVE A COPY OF MY CPC ALHAMBRA FILE BUT IT DIDN’T CONTAIN ANY VIDEO TAPES, INTERVIEW TAPES OR TRANSCRIPTS OF THE CONVERSATIONS THAT WERE RECORDED BY DR. LESLIE MORRIS AND DR. ANDREAS SUBADYA. DR. MORRIS NEVER RETURNED MY CALL.)