I'm tired, Creepy Corneristas.
I haven't been sleeping well for a couple nights. Have you ever had an experience, that while it does not full on scare you, it leaves you feeling on edge? Like you're waiting for the other spectral shoe to fall?
I promise I'll stop being so vague in a moment.
I'll be the first person to admit that I have a very active imagination, an imagination that sometimes gets the better of me. But I'd also like to think that I have a fair grasp of knowing when I'm being irrationally "spooked", and when the goosebumps are legit.
For someone who is still borderline afraid of the dark (I've gradually weaned myself off a night light), and will leave the room when anyone talks about home invasion or "Oh? You didn't know your bedroom was haunted?", I actually think I'm pretty level-headed. While I love a good ghost story, I don't feel the need to turn EVERYTHING into a ghost story.
Says the woman who writes Creepy Corner.
But do you ever feel like a magnet for weird? Like, if there's going to be something strange happening, it will find its way to you somehow?
Normally I'm okay with this — I just went on a Creepy Corner Road Trip for criminy's sake — but once in a while things align in just such a way that it make me think, "Really? Am I making this shit up?"
I had one of those experiences a couple days ago. And because I share all things weird and wonderful with you all, here it is. I'd love to know what you think.
12 noon — I leave my apartment to go write in a coffee shop.
A very normal thing for me. I'll catch up on emails and current events in the morning, then head out into the world.
While riding the elevator down to the lobby, I run into my downstairs neighbor — the "Woman With Many Dogs". She looks a little off.
"How are you?" I ask. She half smiles, and shakes her head. She explains to me that one of her dogs, "Grandpa," has died.
I don't know if it was the profound look of grief in her eyes that got to me, or if it brought back to the surface some of my sadness over the death of my cat, but I got quite choked up.
We ride the elevator in strained silence. Exiting the building and going our separate ways, I fight tears all the way to the subway station a few blocks away.
The day already feels heavy.
12:30pm — Settled into a favorite coffee shop of mine (the one with the great WiFi, good coffee, and lots of other writers), I get to work on an article.
Work goes slow. I keep thinking of my neighbor, and how sad she must feel. Plus my computer keeps freezing.
It was annoying but I didn't think much of it at the time.
2:30pm — I want to throw my laptop into the street and dance over its carcass. It is freezing, glitching, just being a general asshole. Facebook and Twitter work fine, but every time I try to write anything, the program I'm using gets "stuck."
Did I mention I was writing about dogs?
3:00pm — My laptop freezes in the middle of a copy and paste. It does that thing where sections of text get crazy duplicated over and over again.
You know the part in The Shining where Jack Torrance types, "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" over and over and over again? Parts of my document look like that.
Except, and I shit you not, the section of text that got duplicated was:
5:00pm — I decide to call it a day after wrestling with my laptop for the past few hours. For what it's worth, my laptop has been behaving ever since.
5:30pm — My favorite food stall is out of tofu skin rolls. This is not creepy, it is a bummer.
5:40pm — I get back to my apartment and wait in the lobby for the elevator. When I step into it on the ground floor, I remember again how sad my neighbor looked. I hit the button for my floor, the ninth floor. I'm alone in the elevator.
The elevator stops on the fifth floor. The doors open, nobody is there. It's slightly weird, because this is the only elevator odd numbered floors can take (the other one only serves even numbered floors), but I figure whoever called the elevator changed their mind. The doors close on their own, and I keep going up.
I get out on the ninth floor. The doors promptly close behind me. As I search my giant bag for my keys, the elevator doors open again behind me, and stay open. I'm alone in the hallway, there's nobody in the elevator. There are only four apartments on my floor, so I can see every door and the whole hallway.
As I enter my apartment the elevator doors close.
Again, it was slightly weird, and a little creepy, but I tried not to think much of it.
7:00pm — My next door neighbor's new dog is barking, barking, baring. The poor dog seems quite distressed. Bark, bark, bark, bark, bark. What is it with dogs today?
11:00pm — I take our trash out to the chute by the stairwell. To get there, I walk about 10 feet to a fire door, go through that door, and walk another six feet to the chute.
Halfway to the fire door, I hear the elevator doors open. It's an old elevator so the doors opening and shutting are quite loud (I can hear them from inside my apartment), and I can also clearly hear the elevator when it's going up or down.
Out of curiosity, I back up and looked to see if anybody is getting on or off the elevator. Nobody. The elevator and hallway are empty.
I scuttle over to the trash chute, dump the trash, and hurry back to my door.
Again, I SHIT YOU NOT, the elevator doors closed as I got to my door, and the lift just sat there. It did not go up or down.
It was 11:00pm at night, the management was long gone, nobody was running tests on the elevators.
Yep, it was a little creepy.
Midnight — OF COURSE. Of course the "Red Light" people in the next building over are at it again. For the third time in this post, I'm going to say: I shit you not.
I hadn't seen them in a while, I actually thought they might have left. Some of you may remember that when I first moved in (and a couple times after), I saw two people bathed in a strange red light, seated at a table, waiving their arms, their hands "snapping" at the wrists, gesticulating in a seemingly ritualistic way.
I've since come to believe that they have a home shrine, but I can't figure out the movements.
On this night I saw the red light glowing (it glows a little brighter when they are "up to stuff"), and I caught a glimpse of them waiving their arms.
I'm sure there is a very "not strange" reason they are doing what they are doing. But seeing their mysterious actions in the middle of the night, especially after the day I'd had, made me wonder, "Is the universe trying to tell me something?"
Were all of these things portents of..?
With the red light people and the elevator, I decided it was time to call it a night. Climbing into bed, I quickly fell asleep but woke up over and over again. I wasn't having nightmares, my sleep just kept getting interrupted — I don't know why.
So here I am. I'm tired and a little cranky, and I'm still scratching my head over the weird day I had. The elevator has been behaving, and so has my laptop. The only thing out of sorts is me.
Was my day even that weird or am I willfully stringing strange together? Am I a magnet for weird? Or am I just weird?
Tell me what you think Creepy Corneristas, if anybody gets it, you all will.