Basements are inherently spooky.  I’m not talking about the homemade movie theater your dad installed after you went to college–complete with popcorn machine.  That’s spooky for a different reason.

No, I’m speaking of the genetic feeling of dread you feel when you descend the rickety staircase into that unfinished, musty blackness.  Your heart races as you feel around blindly, panicked, for that light switch you’ve hit a million times.  The bare bulb ignites, but it’s never bright enough; so much is still coated in shadow.  The chain clinks.  The bulb hums.  Somewhere, something drips.  A cold plink-plink torn straight from a subterranean cave.

At the end of the day, that’s what a basement is, isn’t it?  A cave.

I’ve lived in two so far.  Probably won’t be my last.  And I was terrified of both.  For no good reason.  But part of me wants there to be a reason.

A reason better than irrational fear or EMF emissions.

When I first moved into my current basement, I was convinced beyond a doubt that it was haunted.  Sounds, dreams, movement, shadows, whispers…a knife in my doorway, a bulb unscrewed just enough that it wouldn’t turn on.  The usual.

My cousins and I would talk about the paranormal nature of the basement to no end.  High above in their shared bedroom, I hardly expected them to understand.  Whoever could scare me worse was the hero.

But today, I am not so sure.  Perhaps I’ve been too occupied to notice the supernatural subtleties.  Or maybe I’m just growing up.  Either way, the basement has lost some its nightmare qualities.

Some.  Not all.

Though I’m not sure if ghosts read blogs…tonight might be a different story.


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