Figured out my Apple Notes ghost problem
Aha! I was becoming frustrated with Apple Notes because it would spontaneously launch at seemingly random times and I could not figure out what was causing it. It was caused by Tinderbox. Tinderbox can "watch" a folder of notes in Apple Notes and automatically import them. One of my Tinderbox documents was configured with a watch folder so it would cause Notes to launch whenever I opened that document. Phew!