Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Ghost post

The students here at New SLAC, and some of the faculty, say there is a ghost in the building where I have my office. I have not seen or heard any signs of anything of the sort, but then I tend to be a hard-bitten rationalist about such things, and I do not have encounters with ghosts even when I seek them out.

I know this, for I sought out the one that lived on the third floor of the English building of the Beloved Alma Mater quite aggressively. She was (so the older students said) an unhappy soul who was studying in the building late one night when she was overwhelmed with a fit of despair about her studies, went into the bathroom, smashed the mirror, and cut her wrists with the shards. If you studied on the third floor late at night, and you were doing badly in your classes, she would come in and commisserate with you. But if you were going to ace the finals and knew it, she might throw a book at you.

I sometimes went up to the third floor to study when I was feeling particularly smug about my academic life, in hopes of baiting her into showing herself, because I was that sort of undergrad. But never, never did I have a book thrown at me, not even by anyone made of flesh and blood, though I'm sure some of my professors and classmates were sorely provoked. Alas.

The resident ghost at my graduate school, the University of Basketball, was a young man with a delightfully Dickensian name who was supposedly killed in a duel over a girl. He did not haunt the English building, which was a 1970-era concrete block monstrosity (the one at the Beloved Alma Mater dated from the 1920s, and was charming and shabby). He liked to hang out just off of campus, around one of the more eccentric and mysterious buildings in town. I never saw him, either.

I'm not sure who the ghost at New SLAC is meant to be -- I'll have to find out.

So, any of the rest of y'all have campus ghost stories?


Dame Eleanor Hull said...

Not campus ghost stories, no. I see ghost cats in houses, both my own and other people's. I too am a confirmed rationalist, so I am sure this is the result of bad eyes and tricks of the light, but it's a little strange sometimes to see a large black cat dash by when you don't HAVE a large black cat.

Fretful Porpentine said...

Hi, nice to meet you, Dame Eleanor! I don't think I've ever heard a ghost cat story before.