It’s a scary world out there, full of looming threats like coronavirus, climate change, and the possibility of Joe Biden securing the Democratic nomination.
But when life is terrifying, it’s often the best course of action to lose yourself in some spooky bullshit – specters concrete enough to be understood and avoided, but also dumb or improbable enough to make you feel in control of an out-of-control world.
The YouTube channel MostAmazingTop10, which specializes in said spooky bullshit, has got your back. The channel has some 6 million subscribers, and its videos feature “topics surrounding mysterious, strange, scary, funny, interesting, educational, and mind-blowing facts.”
If you’re ready to have your mind blown, we suggest starting with this li'l featurette on our home state: “Top 10 Scary Minnesota Urban Legends.” It’s already got some 42,000 views.
Now, before viewing, you may be thinking, “Pssh, I’m from here, what does MostAmazingTop10 know about my state that I don’t?”
But then, in the first five seconds, the host, Linsday Ivan, inexplicably calls Minnesota “the bread and butter state,” and insists “that’s what it’s referred to,” and you discover your knowledge is useless here.
Some of these cryptids are probably familiar to you. We all love Pepie, the Loch Ness-style monster who dwells in Lake Pepin. And you’ve probably heard of the wendigo – a man-eating evil spirit straight out of Algonquian folklore. But right off the bat, Ivan launches into… the “Phantom Kangaroo.”
Yup. One of Minnesota’s famous monsters is apparently a marsupial thought to be endemic to Australia.
In all fairness, the Phantom Kangaroo does have its own Wikipedia page, which is more than we can say about most of you reading this. The page cites reports of kangaroos and wallabies in places they ought not be, including sightings around Coon Rapids in the ‘50s and ‘60s. Residents reportedly saw one or two at a time, hopping through clearings or near highways. Some allegedly just thought they were “big rabbits.”
The stories got a little more colorful elsewhere in the United States. Some of these reports (like a 1934 sighting in Tennessee) include the roos allegedly devouring other animals, like geese or police dogs, even though they’re usually pretty chill and prefer plants. There’s some speculation the phenomenon might be the product of mass hysteria or publicity stunts.
Other cryptids we didn’t know were a thing: the Minnesota Dog-Man, and the Hairy Man of Vergas Trail. But we did enjoy shout-outs to the purportedly haunted Nopeming Sanatorium and Bertha Maynard, the so-called Trout Lake Cemetery Witch.
City Pages is no slouch when it comes to Minnesota’s spooky bullshit, either. You can check out our coverage on the mysterious hauntings of Grey Cloud Island, Marshall County’s famous UFO encounter, and the brutal murders at Duluth’s Glensheen Mansion.
Or you can just check out a photo of this writer during a visit to Nopeming Sanatorium in October, 2018.
To this day, said writer does not know exactly why the eyes look like that.