Thursday, October 28, 2004

Halloween Spookiness with The League: Day 4

by The League

In 2000 or so I literally saw an unidentified flying object. The guy I was with also saw it, but we wrote it off as a weather balloon.

But hauntings? Nah. Not really. When I was in second grade we thought a house which was for sale in the neighborhood was haunted. Back then, we would sneak into empty houses before they sold (yeah, even in Houston in Cypresswood back in the 80’s, not everyone locked every door), trudge around, and sneak out. We had rules about not doing any damage, and so we never got caught.

And I don’t know if someone saw something, or we heard something or what… but we knew something was in there. A week later we learned that there was a raccoon in the house which attacked a realtor. Which is funny, but not scary. And we’re all lucky we didn’t wind up with rabies.

After we moved from Houston to Austin, it was reported my dad (who was and is still alive) was appearing as an apparition in the kitchen of our former home. I’m a skeptic of this particular haunting. While we lived in that house, I don’t remember Dad ever appearing in the kitchen except to get a piece of cheese out of the fridge. No, if Dad was going to haunt something back then, it would have been the recliner. They would have seen a ghostly newspaper floating in the air, occasionally telling them to pipe down and clean up their Legos.

After that, I don’t remember much in the way of ghosts popping up in my life. Justin L. told me his front room was haunted by the ghost of a lady who had died there. Apparently she used to run her hands over her jewelry in a porcelain dish beside her bed. At night, he said, you could hear the sound of metal on porcelain, clinking around in the front room.

In college, like 3000 of my closest friends, I moved into Jester dormitory, the 14 story monstrosity designed by a former prison architect. Not long after moving in, I realized that Jester was/ is, in fact, alive. And it was trying to kill me.

Anyone who lived in Jester knows that the building is enormous. Just my tower was 14 floors of more than 90 residents per floor. Not to mention classrooms, a cafeteria, a creepy basement, study lounges, piano lounges…. The building has stood for only a few decades, but I think, and this is my theory, but I think that so much STUFF happens in Jester, that all of that… stuff… leaves a sort of residue. The building has come to expect the overworked, overstressed, oversexed, sleep deprived, emotionally distended lives of 18-20 year olds for so long that… you know… when the building sits empty like it did over OU weekend, that being alone in a building you can hear breathing…

Sounds would materialize and dissipate, occasionally you’d see someone you didn’t know pass by in the hallway and stick your head out and they’d be gone…. All easy enough to understand, I suppose.

And at 4:00am, I wandered out into the elevator lobby, hearing a strange, persistent sound, metal on metal… the elevator doors standing ajar, the elevator a floor below, and when I stuck my head down the shaft to see what was going on, the elevator suddenly plummeted in free fall, the doors to the shaft closing almost upon my head.

And then one night when everyone has left for Dallas for the big game or gone home, or has ditched for the weekend, you’re looking down the hallway, and you’re shouting “Is anyone else here?” because you think you hear music, but you can’t tell from where, but nobody answers. And there’s something in the hallway, and it’s already upon you, and it’s not that it’s creeping up on you, because now it’s surrounding you and seems to almost be giving off a tangible hum, and its density is growing, and…

Danny isn’t here Mrs. Torrence…

Aside from that, I don’t have any real ghost stories. I got attacked by the Creature from the Black Lagoon once, but that was more irritating than scary.

No comments: