A Strange Painting
I’m four, maybe five. Sleeping in a big boy bed, in a room I share with my younger brother, who’s fast asleep. Though I barely move at all now—my girlfriend refers to my preferred sleeping position as The Bouncer: flat on back, arms crossed, no movement—I tended to thrash a lot back then, and wake up often as a result. And so one night I found myself half-covered in blankets, awake…and staring at a young woman, dressed in flowy white clothing. She is sitting on the ground, back against the very large wooden toy box at the foot of my bed, reading a book. I think? The memory always feels a little fuzzy, and to be honest, at this point my mom tells it better than I do. But I saw her, and slowly pulled the sheets to my eyes, scared as fuck. I’d pull them back down, and she’d still be there, and I’d pull them back up. I don’t know how long this went on. An hour? 30 seconds?
Somehow I fell back asleep. Woke up the next morning, and told my mom what I’d seen. I don’t know if she believes in ghosts, but she doesn’t NOT believe in ghosts, and she listened and cared. And then.
Weeks later, my mom was digging through the attic for something, and she stumbled on a… picture-painting-thing, you know, like they did back in the ’80s. Tchotchke art. It was a woman, in white, wrapped in clouds of fabric. We’d owned the house for a couple years at that point, so who knows where it came from. But my mom liked it and hung it up in the bathroom, so I got to relive my ghost story every time I took a leak. — Jon Wilde, digital director
An Odd Coincidence
One winter night last year, I was hanging out with some friends at their apartment on Rivington Street, in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. I had recently learned that my great-grandfather Izzy spent a chunk of his teenage days in an LES tenement, which I brought up to the group. I wondered how close the tenement might’ve been to their place, so I texted my grandmother (Izzy’s daughter) to see what she knew. She found his World War I draft card, and it listed… the exact same address as my friend’s apartment.
Obviously, it’s not the same building anymore. But it was still weird.
Then, a few minutes after that, we heard someone knocking on my friends’ door—over and over and over again. They have a neighbor who complains about noise all the time, so we figured it was him. But when we opened the door, there was no one there. The knocking resumed again a few minutes later. We tried to laugh it off, but we were all sufficiently shook. And now, of course, I believe in ghosts. — Alex Shultz, editorial assistant
A Girl and Her Dog
My dad is a photographer, and one time he stayed at this hotel up in Vermont for a shoot. He was woken up in the middle of the night when a little white dog ran through his room. Shortly after that, a young girl, about seven or eight years old, came into his room in pursuit of the dog. She sat at the foot of his bed and asked if he had seen her dog. He says he wasn’t scared: It was just a normal little girl, but there was still something about the whole thing that felt supernatural. My dad told her it had ran into the bathroom and if she was lost and needed to find her parents. She said no, got up, and followed the dog into the bathroom. My dad went in to help her get the dog, but when he got in there the room was empty.