have you ever had a spooky experience at work?

Did you ever work somewhere haunted? Feel the ghost of your predecessor marooned in your office? Encounter an evil spirit lurking in the copier?

It’s Halloween, so let’s hear all your stories about spooky experiences at work. Share in the comment section!

And to start us off, here are some particularly creepy stories from past years:

•  “At my last job I would often work several hours past the others, and past dark. There were multiple times where I’d hear filing cabinets opening downstairs, hear the printer randomly turn on and start whirring, and voices whispering. Sometimes the door would be unlocked when I was sure I’d locked it. Every time I thought someone else had come back for something and every time, it was dark and silent when I got downstairs to look. The voices were the worst. When you work in an industrial park you don’t expect to hear talking from outside after hours. Place was in the middle of nowhere.

Of course you could make an argument for stress. I sat at the top of the stairs in a creaky old building with my back to the stairwell, and I was overworked and tired. That said, my boss/the owner did die in a tragic and unexplained plane crash a couple months before.”

•  “I work in a museum. There has always been a joke that the man the museum was named after haunted the place. Things would go missing and items in the souvenir shop would be moved. … When Housekeeping did a deep clean at night, they always said strange stuff would happen. Sounds, voices, etc. When the museum was renovated, we added a big-screen theater. There is a control booth with a small storage area at the top of the theater steps. There is also a tiny balcony behind the control booth where we have screens that face the main hall and that we use to advertise upcoming events, memberships, etc. Many of the security staff swear they have seen and/or experienced ghostly happenings in the control booth/storage area/balcony. One really large, muscled ex-military guy had such a frightening experience that he refused to go in the theater. He was on rounds, checked the theater and heard sounds in the control booth. He knew the AV guy was off that day so he went up. He saw no one in the booth or the storage area, so he was checking the balcony area. He said someone shoved him and he almost fell off the balcony area. There was no one in the theater besides him but they checked the tape anyway. You could clearly see the moment he was pushed forward but you couldn’t see what pushed him forward.

I stay away from the theater. If the biggest security guard in the place was almost pushed off the balcony by invisible forces, I’m not chancing it.”

•  “I work in a nursing home with many folks who have dementia. They live in other realities, and I’m used to residents saying weird things. However, there seems to be a trend in one area of the building where residents typically refer to ‘the little boy’ who always seems to be standing somewhere near. It’s very common for a resident to be talking to the little boy (look like they’re talking to thin air), and it’s also common for them to ask us questions about the boy (‘is this your child?’ or ‘is the little boy going to come to the activity too?’, etc.). It’s only in that one area of the building, but it’s with almost all of the residents who have dementia. Only one of them has a history of having visual hallucinations. It does creep me out a little bit.”

•  “I worked at a place where when we renovated our office, they decided to replace all the walls with glass, to show we were a ‘transparent organization’ (as you can probably guess, leadership there kind of sucked). While the higher ups had frosted glass offices, most of the staff had glass, fishbowl offices with no doors. As you can imagine, we all hated when we lost our walls, particularly one guy who routinely complained about it.

Well, a few months later this guy is fired (for unrelated reasons) in the worst way possible, where they did it midmorning, and everyone saw it happen (hard to hide things in a glass office). So he had to pack up all of his stuff and was escorted from the building.

The next day, the glass walls of the fired guy’s office shattered. No one was near that office, no one saw anything suspicious, and we worked in a secure office so people couldn’t come in without us knowing. We never found out what happened, but I like to think that fired guy got his revenge.”

{ 367 comments… read them below }

  1. Justme, The OG*

    Not me but my mom. She worked in a really old theater that was said to be haunted. Weird stuff would happen, like a fire hose unrolling or weird sounds. They even had a medium come and it was a former actor. They ghost apparently really liked a lot of the staff so he would leave them alone.

    1. Bryce*

      Every theater is haunted. If you work in one without a ghost, you’re the ghost. Sorry you had to find out this way.

      My school one was a worker who fell during construction. One evening I was helping close close up (mom was friends with the director so they often chatted and we’d be the last to leave) and something fell center-stage, with a very light *thud* when it hit. Nothing there. I know it was my eyes playing tricks in a dark theater lit only from the side door out, I’ve had similar things in less suggestible settings, but in that moment I believed and the feeling has stuck.

      1. Trombonish*

        EVERY THEATER. I went to a brand new high school, there was no reason for the theater to be haunted, but it was. Catwalks and lights would swing, things would change locations backstage. More than once I would go to pick up my instrument and one end would be inexplicably heavy and not want to come up off the stage. It was WEIRD.

        1. Beth*

          Every theatre IS haunted! My first career was in professional theatre. Most of the time, it’s benevolent, but the weirdness is real.

          I did one summer Shakespeare festival where there was a narrow underground passageway between two parts of the venue. Walking it alone at night was a trip.

      2. Galinda Upland*

        I used to work in a large, legacy theater in my hometown. Said theater was famous for not having enough restrooms to go around, particularly when we were sold out, since it was a fairly old venue. A few years into my time there, they finally got the go-ahead to renovate and expand the restrooms.

        Great, right? Well, the same weekend we opened for the first time with the new and improved facilities, the staff stationed at a customer service desk near one of the new restrooms began noticing something strange: a toilet that kept flushing, even when the stall was empty. At first, we thought it was just an oversensitive auto-flush sensor reacting to the swinging stall door, so one brave soul went into the stall, locked it, and then crawled out and placed an “Out of Order” sign on the now-locked door.

        Not five minutes later… flushhhhhhh.

        Facilities came out, looked at it, there was absolutely *nothing* mechnically or electrically wrong with that toilet. No one could figure it out, so we blamed the ghost of the original architect who clearly was mad that someone finally put an end to his original, inadequate design. Not as scary as the more aggressive ghosts in this post, but we all got a kick out of it.

          1. DJ Abbott*

            I expect the clients who call several times in 3 minutes instead just leaving a frigging message will do something similar with our phones when they pass.

    2. Baby Yoda*

      I used to work in a 100 year old bank, and the cleaning person and anyone who worked late after hours reported hearing steps upstairs. But they were alone and locked in. With alarms set.

    3. Aggretsuko*

      Hahahaah, the theater I work at and the theater in the next town have two official ghosts. I note that the other town, one of the ghosts is a firefighter who died trying to save a fire hose, and they actually wrote a play about him and performed it there.

  2. not that kind of Doctor*

    I work in a 110-yo brick warehouse. On multiple occasions, the last person left in the building at night – not always the same person – has reported hearing a baby cry somewhere in the building. No source, natural or supernatural, has been discovered.

    1. CatBaby*

      For the past few weeks, around 6am, I was hearing an otherworldly baby cry. It really freaked me out, because I get up first and get ready in the dark before the rest of my family wakes up. I then realized it was the sound of the brakes squealing on my neighbor’s car – I happened to be outside once later in the day when they backed out of their driveway and heard the squeal. :/

      1. Melinda*

        I had that happen to me at home several times. Once I heard a baby over the baby monitor–the baby monitor wasn’t on and my baby was fast asleep. Another time my 9-year-old son told me the baby who lived in the house next door was keeping him awake at night because of the crying. There was no baby next door, and even if there had been, it would have been impossible to hear it.

      2. Roland*

        Idk, I think people are just really in tune with “crying babies” so it’s easy to hear something and think it’s a baby. Like how we seev faces on objects.

        1. turquoisecow*

          I’ve read that the cat’s meow evolved over the years to sound like a human baby crying so that humans would be more sympathetic to their needs, so this is entirely possible.

          1. Glitsy Gus*

            It may just be cats in general. Most wild felines can sound like a baby or a screaming woman. Mountain lions, linxes, panthers, etc. all freak out hikers by sounding like a person screaming in the woods. Foxes too, they sound freakily human sometimes.

        2. SweetFancyPancakes*

          When I was a kid my friend had a Siamese cat that sounded exactly like a baby- it always freaked me out.

        3. TinySoprano*

          My last cat was deaf and had one volume (screaming). He sounded so much like a human baby that one time a telemarketer actually hurried my mother off the phone saying “ma’am, you’d better go, your baby is crying!”

        4. Madame Arcati*

          Or urban foxes. I was woken terrified several times when I lived in a large city, by what sounded like a baby being seriously harmed. I soon learnt it was, well, when a mummy fox and a daddy fox love each other very much…
          Now I live in smaller town I never hear them; I suppose there are plenty of more discreet places in woods and heaths, for a spot of vulpine how’s-your-father.

  3. ArchivistPony*

    I worked in the old HS (building was built in 1901) as an admit for the building director (it was a community center so lots of different businesses in the center). I worked in the evenings. Preface to say I had gone to kindergarten in the building and had heard the legends about the gym and the upstairs men’s bathroom being haunted. One night I was alone and heard footsteps coming down the hall. I watched the camera that was facing the entrance to see who walked by. No-one did and I knew all the doors were locked on that end of the hallway and I didn’t hear the door to the stairwell open. It was super creepy!

  4. Snowy*

    I used to work at a historic house, that had dim replica Edison light bulbs. I got asked constantly on night tours if the house was haunted (the original owners had both died there). I never once had a creepy experience there.

    Our off-site offices, though…those were incredibly creepy. Nothing supernatural, just somehow attracted all the crazy people and had bad lighting, bad security, and no escape routes, in a dark basement :/

    1. BubbleTea*

      I’m currently sitting in a 500 year old house and it just occurred to me how many people have probably died in here. Not seen any signs they’re haunting us though.

      1. anon in affordable housing*

        I’m in a 6-year-old apartment building (102 units) and 23 people have died here in that time.

  5. BoratVoiceMyWife*

    For a few years pre-pandemic I worked at a bar outside of business hours to make a little cash on the side. The bar was built in this old heritage building that had been a handful of different restaurants and a flower shop, but from the outside it looked very much like a house and it probably had been at one point.

    I usually worked the weekend brunch shift so I was rarely there after dark, but on nights where I’d cover someone and do the closing shift, I always felt uneasy in the place when the lights were down. I never saw anything particularly paranormal but it was just that feeling of “I’m not alone in here.” My coworkers often said the same thing, and some of them had heard footsteps or doors closing when they were there alone late at night.

    To make matters worse, the final parts of the closing shift were “dropping the bank bag into the safe in the basement office” then activating the alarm, killing the lights and leaving. This required setting the alarm in the kitchen, running through the restaurant in the ensuing 30 seconds to shut the lights off, then getting out the back door before it activated. Nothing quite like feeling as though the devil is on your heels in an increasingly dark, old and creaky building.

  6. Shynosaur*

    This is probably not super thrilling, but in college I worked in a Civil War-era house that had been made into a museum and the second floor used to give me unbearable paranoia. There was a little chapel on that floor, and one of my coworkers was so afraid of it, he refused to enter it and I would have to do any duties in there (opening/closing windows mostly). The room that gave me an unbearable sense of panic was a lavender-colored bedroom, and there were many times when I was going through closing duties, I would avoid that room until last and then RUN back to the first floor as quickly as I could.

    The story is not very climactic because I never actually saw anything spooky while working there, but it was so strange there was that sensation in that particular part of the house because my coworker and I explored every other part of the house and grounds–including cellars, underground tunnels, attics, and a tower, and none of it fazed us at all. Just those two rooms on the second floor.

    Another delightful Halloween tidbit is when I worked at a university, one staff building (another Civil War era structure) actually had a tombstone that was stored on the steps leading up to the top floor. Those stairs were inside a closet, so a member of senior staff had to open the door to show me the tombstone, which was very small and nobody actually knew where it had come from. Staff legend was that the street was paved over a grave and they had put the stone in the nearest public building because what else where they supposed to do with it? I have no idea how true that might have been, but it was unquestionably a tombstone for a baby or young child from about the same era the house was from. Staff did report spooky goings on, mainly with electronics, but I never actually worked in that building myself.

    1. Chilipepper Attitude*

      I grew up in a very old home (so this is not work-related) that my dad and I traced back in property records to the early 1700s. There were two doors to the front room and it was very large it spanned the whole width of the house. As a young adult, I shared locking the doors duty with my parents. That is when I learned that my mom would also never use the right-hand door into the front room. We were both terrified of that end of the room when we went to check the lock on the front door. I would not even look at that side of the room. It gave me the same sense of panic that Shynosaur describes.

      1. Hannah Lee*

        I have a corner of my back yard that is like that. When I first bought the house, I’d be out working on the landscaping and anytime I was there I’d feel uneasy, sometimes like I wasn’t alone. A couple of times I was doing stuff in that corner that I had to kneel down to do – hand weeding and edging, and I thought I heard voices. Nothing I could make out, just someone(s) talking. Each time I picked my head up and looked around, the voices stopped and no one was anywhere around.

        The long term neighbor on that side did have a couple of garden gnomes on that side of his yard (his late wife had brought them with her when she came from England) So I just started thinking of it as the gnomes’ corner and steered clear. After my first year there, I planted some shrubs in that corner that don’t need much tending instead of the flower bed that had been there, just so I didn’t have to spend too much time working there. (Bonus, it blocked any view of the gnomes from my yard)

        It’s only a small lot 1/3 acre, and the rest of the yard is fine, but that one corner makes me uneasy. Funnily, there is a cemetery nearby, that I can see from most of my yard, but I never feel uneasy about that.

        That neighbor was a sweet guy, and we got along great, I never got any bad vibes from him. Sadly he passed away in his 90s last year after a short illness. And weirdly a massive tree in his backyard fell over in a rainstorm within days – thankfully away from any houses though it crushed his back fence. Made me think of that old song about the man and his clock.

      2. Ampersand*

        I had this same feeling when I was house hunting years ago. One of the bedrooms in a house I was looking at made me so uneasy (my instinct was that something bad had happened there) that I had to leave immediately. That overwhelming “must get out NOW” feeling was memorable.

        1. House Hunter*

          My mother recalls the story of long before I was born, she and my dad had been searching for their 1st home and went to a view a house for sale.
          The house on the outside was lovely, and inside the house was spacious and beautifully set up and pretty much everything my mother had wanted in a dream home.
          My parents finally made it to the living room – which overlooked the neighbours backyard- and all was going well until my mother felt this dreadful sensation of the walls and ceilings closing in on her. She felt unusually overwhelmed and anxious , so fled straight out of the house.
          The feelings all disappeared as soon as she was outside, but she could not shake off the feeling she’d had.
          Now she’s never had an anxiety or panic attack but being in that house could only make her imagine what it felt like. The Real Estate agent even offered her his asthma inhaler thinking she had an asthma attack.
          Dad assumed she was just exhausted from looking at so many houses.

          Months later my mother happened to flick through a local newspaper and came across an article about a house where a woman had been murdered in her own backyard by an estranged partner.
          The address sounded oddly familiar, then mom finally realised that the house she and dad had viewed months ago was right next to the murder house.

          1. Ace in the Hole*

            I think sometimes we pick up on warning signs subconsciously, which creates this instinctive fear.

            Years ago I was walking to the grocery store along a footpath that went through a little wooded section and over a bridge, a bit isolated and out of view from the street. It was a familiar route I took several times a day every day, never had any problems or any bad feelings. But for some reason that day as I approached the bridge I got this powerful feeling of dread. I couldn’t explain it, but I just NEEDED to turn around right then even if it meant going hungry that night. I literally ran the whole way home.

            Months later I learned that a girl my age had been brutally assaulted at that bridge at about the same time I got the wiggins. I’m convinced my brain picked up on very subtle clues that someone with bad intentions was hiding around the corner, even though I couldn’t ever articulate what tipped me off.

    2. Citra*

      I worked for a food delivery service in a large city, in an area that had been renovated/improved for tourism in the decade or two prior, and is still a very fashionable area. One night I had to make a delivery to an apartment on the third floor of a particular building, which was actually a really nice-looking place with a pretty ritzy address. The unease started when I was halfway across the lobby; it got worse in the elevator. By the time I started walking down the hall on the third floor I felt like the walls were closing in on me; my heart was pounding, and I had such an overwhelming sense of dread that I could hardly breathe. I was terrified.

      I had to visit the place twice more before I asked my boss if I could please never deliver there again. Every time I had the same unease leading into terror, the same sense that something horrible was happening or going to happen. Every time I ended up practically running out of the building with tears in my eyes.

      About ten years ago, I finally decided to Google the address, and search for things like “[city] murders.” I don’t remember which search led me there, but I finally found an article that mentioned the address…because there had been a pretty gory drug-related triple murder on the third floor there, back in the mid-80s or thereabouts.

      1. Sharp-dressed Boston Terrier*

        That sets me to thinking… perhaps things like that, you never completely get the smell out? It wouldn’t explain House Hunter’s mom’s experience, but in this case it may be that — and yes, I realize it was decades later — there were still traces that some people’s olfactory nerves would pick up on. And they’d react, subconsciously. “I smell blood… something bad has happened here.”

        Idle speculation on my part, obviously, but it might explain things.

        1. Citra*

          That’s an interesting idea! There is also a theory that if the proportions or angles of a space are off, like if a wall is a little crooked, a ceiling or floor not level, or a hallway narrows as it goes along, we don’t see it with the naked eye but our subconscious registers it and we feel uncomfortable. Like, our subconscious tells us something is “off,” but because we don’t see the issue, we don’t know where that feeling is coming from.

    3. allathian*

      Not work-related, but I’m a lapsed Lutheran, and I think that old churches that were originally consecrated Catholic are really creepy places. It’s a feeling of intense discomfort and I only want to get out of there. Because I’m not a believer I don’t generally like attending church services, even for things like weddings and funerals, but I’m much less uncomfortable in more modern churches that were originally consecrated Lutheran. Just visiting otherwise amazing places like Notre Dame or Westminster Abbey makes me vaguely uncomfortable.

      An online friend of mine who’s been lucky enough to walk between the stones of Stonehenge told me that she felt extremely uncomfortable there. She’s a devout Orthodox Jew. I’ve rarely felt more at peace with myself and the world as when I walked among the standing stones at Carnac (or Karnag in Breton) in Brittany.

      1. londonedit*

        Ooh, interesting. I’ve also walked around the stones at Stonehenge (they do special small-group trips before and after the visitors’ opening times, and you go with a guide and can spend half an hour or so walking around the whole site – the only stipulation is you’re not allowed to touch the stones) and I loved it. The sun was going down and it was so beautiful – I’m not at all religious (nominally raised culturally C of E but never believed any of it) but you could just feel the thousands of years of spirituality in the place.

      2. Reluctant Mezzo*

        On the other hand, our family walked in the Courtyard of the Gentiles at the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City, and it was just…joyous in there, something pushing up from the pavement. Then I thought about it, and all the believers who go to the services have to go that way before they get to the non-touristy part. I’m not Mormon, but I certainly felt something kind of neat.

      3. MM*

        Do churches from other Protestant denominations also have this effect on you? What does your friend’s Jewishness have to do with Stonehenge?

  7. nnn*

    I want to see a heist film about how the guy in the last story covertly rigged his walls to shatter to enact vengeance upon the company that fired him!

    1. Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain*

      That one is an odd addition to “paranormal” activity though; did they fire him or…terminate him another way?

      Spontaneous shattering is known issue with glass shower doors/enclosures too. Some rational explanations: the building settling/shifting and putting a strain on the glass, manufacturing defects or unseen chips/cracks in the glass that eventually give way, expansion/contraction from temperature changes…

      1. just passing through*

        Maybe the theory is that the fired guy was psychokinetic? (I agree, more likely interestingly timed engineering strains…)

        1. Elsajeni*

          Yeah, this is what I assumed — or just some kind of buildup of angry negative energy.

          I was at a diner with my roommates years ago, at around one in the morning, and a big group of teenagers came in and were seated near us. They looked like they’d come straight from prom, and they were SUPER amped up and SUPER loud and, bless them, fairly annoying to sit next to. They were obviously really getting to one of my friends in particular; they got louder and louder, and his frown got deeper and deeper, and finally he bared his teeth in frustration and shut his eyes and raised both hands to rub his temples… and his water glass on the table just exploded.

          It’s just a thing that happens sometimes! It definitely had more to do with the age of the glass and the very cold water in it than with my roommate’s latent psychokinetic abilities! But that did not stop us from hassling him about his Rage Powers for the rest of the time we lived together.

      2. anon in affordable housing*

        My building was designed with balconies shared by two units, with a divider between our two halves. The original frosted glass dividers developed serious cracks after a small earthquake. It took months for the management to replace the dividers. The company had to go through a full bidding process even though one would think it was an imminent health and safety issue. (We now have industrial perforated metal.)

  8. Brad*

    There was a period of my career I was working opposite hours of the rest of the office, so it wasn’t unusual for me to be entirely alone in our building overnight.

    One night, well past midnight, I was dealing with a difficult technical issue and getting frustrated as I was tired and wanted to go home. After slamming my hands on my computer keyboard in frustration, I went to get a glass of water and take a break.

    As I left my office, I heard someone whispering *directly* behind my back.

    Our office at the time was a big open concept loft – I had the only fully closed off office – the rest of the floor was just a big bullpen with some half height glass walls. It took seconds to survey the entire floor end-to-end and confirm that there was no *possible* space anyone could be hiding.

    Shortly after I sat back down at my desk I heard the whispering again. It was coming from *right* outside my door. The words were so indistinct I couldn’t quite make them out, but this time I got a clear impression it was English and a young, female, voice. The instant I turned trying to see who was there the voice immediately stopped. It was completely unnerving.

    Spooked, I turned on every light I could find. I looked over everyone’s desk to see if any computers were still on or any phones were off the hook. I even went down to the only other floor of the building to see if the downstairs tenant (who was almost never in the building) had decided to show up at 2am. Of course there was no one there – and I could see from the security panel at the door that their heavy-duty alarm system was on, including the motion detectors. The front doors were locked tight, the fire escape, stairwell and bathrooms secured and empty. I was, demonstrably, the only person in the entire building.

    Convinced, I went back to my office and opened my notes to refresh myself on the problem I was supposed to be solving. After a few moments of typing I suddenly heard the voice again – but this time saying clear as day: “he’s using Microsoft Office” – the program I had just switched to!

    I turned the office upside down trying to find out what was going on. I searched filing cabinets and desks for hidden speakers, looked for concealed cameras, checked the street in front of the building (and the roof of the building opposite). All to no avail. I was starting to think I was losing my mind.

    Finally after I combed every inch of the main office for a third time I conceded that, given my fully enclosed (no-window) office, and every check I had just done – there *was no possible way* anyone could be seeing what I was doing on my computer screen. This was clearly just a figment of my tired brain running wild.

    I walked back to my desk and sat down and the voice immediately whispered: “now he’s using Firefox browser” (which, again, was true).

    Thankfully – instead of running in gibbering madness into the night – a light-bulb suddenly went off in my brain as to what was going on – and it turned out I was correct:

    When I had slammed my hands on my computer in frustration earlier – three things had happened that I didn’t realize or intend:

    1. My earbuds, which were still plugged into the headphone jack of my computer, slipped behind my desk.
    2. I turned the volume up to it’s maximum level.
    3. I accidentally hit the key combination to turn on the “voice assist” built into my computer to dictate to the visually impaired.

    So.. whenever I was actively typing, or clicking on things, the computer was helpfully dictating everything I was doing in it’s female computerized voice. Because the earbuds are such small speakers (and were dangling behind my desk, slowly rotating around) most of it was inaudible except for the odd word or phrase that, after reflecting off the bottom of my desk and the floor, sounded exactly like it was coming from just outside my office door. Aside from the actual names of the programs – my brain was just filling in the rest of the indistinct narration. And of course, the moment I *stopped* using the computer (as I would do the instant I thought I heard something) the dictation would stop… until the next time I sat down and started typing again.

    I don’t think I actually ever did solve the problem I was supposed to be dealing with that night – but I figure solving one huge, impossible, mystery a night is probably good enough.

    1. WantonSeedStitch*

      OMG. That would have creeped me out to no end–but how RELIEVED must you have felt when you found out what had happened! I would have been crying with relief!

    2. yala*


      Reminds me of how, for some reason, my computer speakers back in college would pick up a Spanish-language radio station. Only when they were off, though. Scared the bejeepers out of me to suddenly hear someone talking.

      1. Geriatric Millennial*

        My (very old, with loose antenna that I had to hold in position for some channels) TV in college would pick up my neighbor’s conversations on her cordless phone. Luckily only when it was on, though!

        1. Hannah Lee*

          My previous car radio used to pick up transmissions from commercial jets approaching the airport in Boston, if I happened to be heading east on a certain stretch of Route 2 from n central Mass.

          The first time it freaked me out, but after it happened a second time I looked forward to it – I’d hit the scan function on my radio when I got to that stretch, to see if I could pick it up, and about half the time I did ( that’s a pretty active approach flight path for Logan Airport)

          1. M&M*

            I live near Logan Airport now and we have an old radio we picked up from the thrift store that’s also picked up flight transmissions! It’s usually too fuzzy to make out much, but it’s still pretty cool.

      2. Butterfly Counter*

        My computer speakers could pick up some two-way radio transmissions that were in the area. I got to hear a very COLORFUL back and forth between construction/landscaping workers after another of their coworkers had botched some kind of job in spectacular fashion.

      3. Jerusha*

        My mother’s TV band radio, on certain channels, picked up air traffic control from our nearby airport. We used to joke about airplanes landing in the kitchen. (Although we learned to be very careful about how we joked after the time we said something like, “Here they come!” and our dogs went _bananas_, barking and looking out the front windows for whoever was arriving…)

    3. Silly Janet*

      Wow, so glad you figured it out! That reminds me of a story in an Anne Lamott book when she was living alone and kept hearing her name being called in this weird, high pitched voice. It was really freaking her out, and she finally discovered it was a old puzzle of her son’s that made animal noises.

      1. ThatGirl*

        Earlier this year I drove some friends to the airport and kept her car at my house for the week. The whole drive back from the airport I kept hearing this faint “beep beep” car horn sound, but nobody was honking at me, it kept up as I got off the highway, I was a little concerned, thought maybe something was wrong.

        Turned out to be one of her kids’ toys in the back seat lol.

    4. Tuesday*

      Cracking up. I have fallen victim to the “whispers from the earbuds” phenomenon many a time in my life.

    5. Chocoholic*

      This is a great story – I am glad there was a simple answer to fix it, rather than an actual ghost.

    6. I edit everything*

      You should consider telling this one at a Moth or other storytelling event sometime. So good!

  9. Alltheatersarehaunted*

    I work in theater(s). Most are haunted. Even the tiny one that used to be a post office. Most have a ghost light to keep on when the stage is dark and when everyone goes home to keep the ghosts happy. All theaters should have one. If you’re working in a theater without one, leave a light on.

    I also happen to have been the first in/last out a lot of times, and yeah, they’re haunted. A set painter was working late one night and called me to come keep them company because they didn’t want to be bothered by ghosts. Their paintbrushes had been moved and there were some noises that could not be attributed to wildlife or the 50 yr old building settling. The older theaters usually have names for their ghosts.

    1. Silly Janet*

      I love the ghost light! I worked as a teacher in a large community center that had a theater, and they always left a ghost light on. I told the kids about it and they were fascinated.

    2. yala*

      “A set painter was working late one night and called me to come keep them company because they didn’t want to be bothered by ghosts.”

      Something about this reminds me of my freshman year in college, living in a haunted dorm and working through midterms. Most of us quickly adopted the attitude of “Yes, yes, Marble Boy, you’re very spooky, but this is due tomorrow.” tbh I think that was a primary reason folks got together to work, even though space was so cramped.

        1. yala*

          He didn’t really do much, just stood in the corner of your room and dropped marbles. I don’t think anyone saw him, you just heard him. He never started coming to my room until after my roommate had left for a semester. It was loud.

      1. Lyudie*

        Like many dorms, my college dorm was named after a donor and whenever the elevator would open on our floor with no one inside, we would say it was the ghost of Mrs. Greene checking on us.

    3. CatBaby*

      I don’t really believe in much but I can be convinced all theaters are haunted. I hung out with the theater group in college (designed a few sets), and one night me and a friend had to walk down a dark hallway on the upper levels of the theater one night to get to the exit – it was the area where they had all the costume, makeup, etc rooms. We were terrified. That place had such a horrible feeling to it, and I really thought I saw stuff moving around in the dark that shouldn’t have been there. I’ll never forget that mad dash we made holding each other’s arms! Thankfully we got through it without incident. :D

      1. BubbleTea*

        Theatre people are usually very dramatic, it makes sense they’d be more than usually likely to haunt places.

    4. Squidhead*

      My former career was as a stage tech. I worked at only one theater that did NOT have a ghost (so far as anyone knew). Worst place I ever worked…safety issues, bad management, soul-sucking “do it for the arrttt!” whining, etc. You need a ghost around the place! It keeps people’s souls honest. (Okay, I know of bad theaters that also have ghosts, but I assume they would be *even worse* with no ghosts.)

      1. Glitsy Gus*

        Yeah, the myth of the ghost light is fun, but really it is a safety thing. With stages where it gets too dark to see, scenery and furniture move constantly, trap doors and sudden drops come and go, there should always be a light on for safety. Every place I’ve worked that doesn’t have one inevitably had other big issues with employee safety and general workplace standards.

        The ghost stories are fun trappings to go with it, but it does serve a real purpose.

    5. pope suburban*

      I work in public arts administration, and we teach classes in addition to running a theatre. Years ago, staff was doing a summer theatre camp for elementary-aged kids, and our technical director had come into the theatre to get something. One of the kids remarked on it and, in a moment of inspiration, the staff member teaching the class put on a look of surprise and said, “You can see him?” She and her co-instructor made a running bit of him being our theatre ghost throughout the whole camp, and the legend persists to this day.

  10. SnipSnap*

    Many years ago, I worked in an office where the owner was a micromanager – for mass mailings, for instance, we had to lick stamps and not use a dabber because he was certain licking them would lead to higher open rates. That level of micromanaging (my tongue suffered!) I had scheduled time off and in the period between scheduling the vacation and the vacation, I’d been promoted. When I took the vacation, I came back and he was enraged that I’d still taken the time off. My supervisors urged me to just quit, they’d give glowing recommendations, but that it was not worth it for me to stay… so I did. And went for drinks with friends, lamenting it was a great job, if only the owner was gone.

    The next morning, I got a call from my coworker. The owner had collapsed and dropped dead – onto my just-vacated desk.

    I was asked to un-quit, and I did, and worked there for a few more years before moving on. In general, people thought maybe his wild response to my vacation was a symptom of the medical issue that killed him, but I can tell you I always got the creeps when I was left to close the office late at night by myself. I think he was still mad.

    1. not a doctor*

      The wildest part of this story isn’t the possible spookiness, it’s the idea that licking stamps somehow increases open rates. WHAT?

      1. EPLawyer*

        Like how would the recipient even KNOW if it was licked or dabbed? It’s still stuck on the envelope, no way to tell how it was done.

      2. Chirpy*

        Yeah, if he’d said he thought they stayed on the envelope better, that might make a weird sort of sense (if he thought the stamp glue is formulated for saliva over water?) but open rates makes no sense.

      3. Dust Bunny*

        Yeah, this was my first concern. We used to have to do mass-mailings but we totally used sponges to “lick” the stamps. How would people even know??

        I think he was mad about the sponged stamps.

  11. Meep*

    I worked in a Science Center & Planetarium that was founded by a woman named Grace using her deceased husband’s money. Any time lights flickered or we got a cold draft that’s Gracie letting us know she was there. She’s pretty benevolent and will only occasionally knock things over in the gift shop if we don’t tidy it properly.

  12. bennie*

    the building i work in dates back to the 1920s, but the organization itself is a few decades older. we’ve had multiple 1st and secondhand accounts of a mysterious woman in period costume floating around the building, including by people who were only here for a short time like a caterers. we also had a few different psychics in the building because part of where i work functions as a performance space, and they had identified a presence of an older woman spirit in the hall. supposedly this is the spirit of one of the organizations founders. i don’t believe in ghosts, but i just creeped myself our by writing this and looking at historical photos of said woman, who passed away in the 1910s.

  13. Spaceball One*

    I had that exact feeling (“I’m not alone in here”) once in the stairwell of one of the larger buildings on the government installation where I used to work. The building itself was constructed in the late 50s/early 60s, so it wasn’t super old, but it had its creepy moments. That particular day, I was on my way down from the third floor to the ground floor and suddenly felt like something was behind me (I was alone in the stairwell) and moving toward me. I bolted down the stairs and out through the stairwell door. I mostly avoided that stairwell after that, especially if I was alone.

    Another experience I had at in that same building: I entered an empty ladies’ room with three stalls (all doors open). I went into a stall, and a couple minutes later heard the outer door open and someone go into the stall beside me. This did not strike me as unusual until I exited my stall a few seconds later… and the other stalls were still open and empty.

      1. Spaceball One*

        Beats me. All I know is someone came in through the outer door, went into the center stall and closed the door… I heard it all. But no one was there.

        I always assumed if there was “someone” there, maybe they thought they were still at work, you know? And following their daily routine. I dunno. I’m no ghostologist. :)

    1. yala*

      Back at college (all of my ghost stories start that way. Savannah is Very Haunted)…

      anyway, back at college, I was with a club in the common room, and went to the restroom around midnight. Sitting there and all of a sudden something starts SLAMMING on my stall door. Like, not just once, over and over. No one else is in there. The AC hadn’t just kicked on.

      Never went back to that one.

  14. MegMeg91*

    We joke that my classroom has a ghost because my posters will randomly fly off my wall and my items on my desk will fall over when no one is near my desk. It is always really bad on Halloween. Just today I’ve had two stapled poster fly off the wall and items on my desk fall over 3 times.

    1. Silly Janet*

      If you like ghost stories, there is a great one about a haunted classroom on the Spooked series from Snap Judgement.

    2. Curmudgeon in California*

      Maybe you should put out a little dish of candy for the ghost? Something properly Halloweenish.

  15. I just work here*

    I worked in a small store once. Where you could see everything and everyone that came and went. But sometimes I would swear there was someone else there with me. To the point I’d physically walk to the spot where I think someone was . Even though I could see no one was there. One person that worked there that don’t know about our ghost stopped vacuuming in the locked store because she thought someone was inside with her

    1. Stunt Apple Breeder*

      Our store had a ghost, too. The night cleaning person told us that he had seen movements around corners, displays across the store would suddenly tip over within seconds of each other, and something would occasionally growl like a dog when he ran the floor cleaner.

      I never saw or heard anything weird at work. At home is a different story…

    2. Anon for spook story*

      We had a store ghost as the, ahem, adult novelty retailer I worked at before college. We named him Herbert (the rhyming potential!) and he’d mostly leave us alone if you asked. But if you didn’t rearrange all the display toys when cleaning for the night, Herbert would be apt to fling the one vibrator you skipped off the shelf and onto the floor. But of course only after you’d turned your back and walked away, just so you’d know who it was and why.

      I talked to him and gave him sass back. One coworker stopped working close because she couldn’t stand the weirdness.

    3. Arghh*

      I also worked in a haunted store! One night the ghost was in a particularly annoying mood and kept putting a pegboard hook in the middle of the floor when we weren’t looking. There were just two of us working and no customers, so this went on for hours. On another slow night, he knocked a row of metal hangers onto the floor in our storage room. I think he just didn’t like when it got too quiet.

      That place is a burger restaurant now and I always wonder if he still messes with them when he’s bored.

  16. OyHiOh*

    The theatre I worked in was, like many theatre’s, rumored to be haunted. Odd noises, doors that were found not the way you left them, props or costumes that you knew you’d put away that could not be found. To add to the usual theatre mystique, the building was a restaurant before it was a theatre and in its restaurant life, it was a known mob hangout (not a big city but one of those smallish communities close-ish to a federal prison; family visiting the incarcerated and such). The students especially disliked the ability for props and costumes to disappear. The directors made a big deal about keeping track of your property once it was assigned.

  17. Adds*

    At OldJob, we had “Office Ghost.” It was said partly in jest and partly not.

    We worked in a portable building in a construction yard (big, unimproved gravel lot with construction materials). We blamed Office Ghost for the printer messing up or cycling on and for the breakers tripping (which was common because our office of 5 computers, a printer, a water cooler, 2 window AC units & a mini fridge was run on 3 wall outlets and at least 10 power strips daisy-chained together) and for silly things like mislaid papers and missing pens. This was the jest part.

    The not jest part was that every single one of us in admin heard our name called to us both inside the little building we worked in and while outside walking through the yard when no one else was around more than once. Several of the folks who worked in the yard mentioned it too, they would come in and ask if we had called for them. Nope, it was Office Ghost. Not really scary, but definitely kinda weird.

  18. Engi-nerd5893*

    When I was in college, I had a part time job as a building manager for my university student center. My duties included being the first one to open up the building in the morning, unlocking internal public access areas, confirming rented rooms were set up correctly, items like that.

    The building had recently undergone a renovation and facelift. It was tasteful and preserved a lot of the historic features, but it really was a gut reno in terms of finishes, architectural layout, etc.

    One morning, I was waiting at our front desk for the last member of our staff to arrive. The desk radio, but none of our connected mobile radios, lit up and crackled. Thinking it was a tech failure, I pinged back from the desk and asked if my last guy was there or if this was interference from one of the parking structures. No answer. A few minutes later, only the desk radio crackled again, this time with words. “… Third… floor…”. Fantastic.

    By that time, my last staff member arrived and we began our morning sweep of the public floors, including the third floor. Being the supervisor and the most capable of handling anything out of the ordinary, I walked the third floor. I unlocked one set of stair entrances began walk down a long corridor to unlock the reflection room and another set of stairs. I could hear my own steps really loudly, because the building was absolutely silent. As I stepped up to unlock the reflection room door, I heard one more step after my own feet stopped moving.

    I whipped around and shouted something along the lines of “who ever the **** you are, that’s not even a little funny” to the absolutely barren hallway behind me. Unlocked the room and sprinted to the other bank of stairs.

    Nothing else out of the ordinary happen for the duration of my working there, but there was an occasional a creepy feeling of someone watching me when I went to the the third floor and parts of the second floor (which used to be connected to the third floor airspace via atrium). Good times.

  19. The Other Evil HR Lady*

    Not my own personal office, but I can only imagine having to work there: my husband and I met with our attorney’s paralegal one late afternoon. The office is located in one of the old townhouses in NW DC, across from a church built in the 1840’s. It’s a beautiful townhouse, with its original hardwood floors and antique fireplaces.

    We were sitting across from the paralegal and she’s talking to us when her laser printer starts making an odd sound. Not the usual “I’m about to print something” sound, more like it’s grinding on gears. Then stops. Then abruptly starts up again, but this time it was the usual “I’m about to print something” sound that all of us know (it was the HP laser printers one sees everywhere, so we’re all pretty accustomed to the sound, I think).

    The paralegal looks behind her and says, in an exasperated voice (because she had just gotten interrupted), “There she goes again!” and pauses to find her train of thought. I asked, “Is the printer broken?” wondering why she referred to it as “her,” but I speak Spanish and I do that a lot. The paralegal said, “No, that’s just the ghost.” Of COURSE we needed to know more. She said, “This lady ghost doesn’t like it when we’re here past 5 o’clock, so she starts messing with the machines. Watch, the computer will go next,” as if it was just a silly quirk of the old building, like faulty wiring or a wonky faucet.

    My husband and I signed all the paperwork in record time and hightailed it out of there super fast. It had been, indeed, a little past 5 o’clock.

    1. Warrior Princess Xena*

      NGL, this is the most entertaining way to have a healthy work-life boundary I’ve ever heard of. “Sorry, ghost doesn’t like it when we stay past 5 and starts turning off the computer”.

    2. Curmudgeon in California*

      What a kind ghost! What happens if someone came in at 9 am instead of 8? Did they still get harassed if they were there after 5 pm?

    3. ADHSquirrelWhat*

      in life, that person got REALLY TICKED at dinner always going cold because someone had to stay late …..

  20. LadyAmalthea*

    When I was in college, I worked in the periodicals department of the University library. One of the rooms was down 2 long hallways from the main office, by a rarely used door to the outside, and all of the shelving was rolling. All of the student aids spent our evening shifts writing horror movie scripts about being alone in the room and the shelves slooooowly starting to move on their own. It got worse when it was the end of the semester and I was working the 10 to midnight shift alone and in that room and something would creak.

    1. JustaTech*

      Looking back I’m kind of amazed that I was never creeped out by the University library where I worked; it was about a hundred years old, built by a donor who’s son drowned on the Titanic, at least one professor had died in his office inside the stacks (of extreme old age, nothing criminal), and had those motion-sensing lights and usually come on when you walk by, but not always.
      And I worked alone on one of the basement floors that hardly anyone ever visited.

      But no, the place that freaked me out was the modern addition that was full of people; because it had the compression-stacks I was scared of someone accidentally squishing me. (Which did nearly happen at a different library.)

  21. Sydney Bristow*

    I worked at a fast food restaurant and was opening by myself one morning. I was in the lobby taking the chairs down off the tables and clear as day heard a man behind me say “no thank you.” I jumped and turned around and there was nobody there. The doors were locked and I was the only person in the building.

    1. allathian*

      Nothing supernatural in my story, but it was still scary.
      When I was in college, I worked at a fast food/sandwich kiosk inside a railway station. We were open 6 am to 1 am, with a night shift of one person to do the cleaning and to make the first sandwiches to go before opening. I tended to do the second shift mostly, although sometimes I’d do the night shift and then I’d shower at work when my shift ended at 7 and go straight to class… No way I could do that now, although I had no problems doing that occasionally when I was 21. Our storeroom was in the basement, with no windows and a very low ceiling, I could easily reach it just by raising my arms, so it was maybe 6 ft 6 in high at most. It was also a bit of a labyrinth. Anyway, one day I was down there switching the coke concentrate bag for the soda fountain, when the lights suddenly went out. I really freaked out, as it was completely dark, and because there were so many storage shelves everywhere, I couldn’t see the emergency exit lights anywhere. I don’t remember much after that, because I went into a full-blown panic. At some point my shift supervisor came down looking for me. Fortunately she was a reasonable person so she just told me to change into civvies and go home. I was obviously in no fit state to work, and I even got paid for my full shift.

      But that was the last time I went down into the basement alone, and not long afterwards I quit that job. I still hate going into cramped, dark places.

  22. modhousewife*

    I may have posted this before, but here we go:
    I used to work at a theater that began as a vaudeville house in the ’30s, then was a movie house for many years, then converted back to a live theater. Of course it was rumoured to be haunted, by the spirit of a projectionist who had died in a car crash rushing between jobs there and at another local movie house. One night, a stage manager friend and I had to run back into the theater after hours to retrieve a wallet someone had left behind. At the time, another friend was storing his upright bass between shows in what had been the projection booth. We enter, walk down one aisle and are crossing the foot of the stage when we hear what sounds like someone bowing a long, low note on an upright bass. Turn to each other with “Are you hearing what I’m hearing?” looks, grab the wallet and beat the proverbial hasty retreat. It almost felt like whatever “it” was chose to communicate using a sound I’d recognize.

  23. Metal Librarian*

    In my last workplace, we had a problem relating to the electrics: the radio would turn itself on at night and start playing at full volume, disturbing the tenants living in the flat above. This was particularly odd as it was set to ‘CD’ mode and there shouldn’t have been a way for it to switch itself to FM radio.

    I didn’t think anything of it until I went on a ghost tour around my town, and the tour guide stopped right outside my workplace. Turns out it was haunted and several former staff had reported seeing a ghost girl there! Apparently she appears in several of the buildings over that end of town, and is evidently fond of music :)

    1. ferrina*

      Ghost tours are the best! That’s such a trip that your workplace was a stop!

      I love ghost tours, but wouldn’t want one to stop at my workplace :D

      1. Metal Librarian*

        I got excited and mentioned it on social media (just my personal one, not the company’s), and subsequently got in trouble with my manager. Unfortunately she didn’t share my enthusiasm for macabre history and thought it might put potential customers off visiting :P

  24. I've Escaped Cubicle Land*

    Worked in an animal shelter that was decades old. The 4 halls of kennels laid out like a lower case t. Was making sure access to the outside part of the kennels was shut one evening before closed. Distinctly heard a female voice call my name from behind me where all 4 hallways met. Think the way a parent or auntie says your name when they really want to get your attention. Turned around expecting a coworker but no one was there. Everyone else was still up in the office at the lowest end of the t. Many coworkers had heard their name called out in the same area. Also they had a picture of 1 kennel that appeared to have a ghostly image of a dog in it.

  25. Veryanon*

    I swear this actually happened to me.
    I worked at a company which had its headquarters in an old house that belonged to the company’s founder. Legend had it that a maid had died by suicide because she fell in love with one of the family’s sons, and they weren’t permitted to marry. Her ghost was said to still haunt the house and was said to be fond of pranks.
    There was one time I was working at my desk, and I had left my cell phone on its charger. I got up to use the bathroom, and when I came back, I could not find the cell phone anywhere. no one else had access to my desk. Then, when I tried to type on my computer, the only thing that appeared on the screen was NONONONONONONONONONONONONO all the way down the page. When I stepped away to do something, I came back and there was my cell phone in its original position. Was someone playing a prank on me? Possibly, but I like to think it was the ghost.

  26. Just Want A Nap*

    Oh man, here’s chronological, and the only one I really know the answer to is the laser:
    1) in college I was in a fabrication lab that would run projects for students. I’d been bribed with food to stay late for a couple other students to finish their 3D prints… and the laser cutter across the room started running on its own.
    2) 1st job out of college, I was doing survey work in the cornfields of Indiana, and I got lost. Itd been a long day, I couldn’t spot my fielding partner or the car and the sun was getting low, and when I turned around there was a guy in jeans and flannel who pointed and said “Lost? Oh your truck is that way.” Thanked him, turned around, and he was gone. My buddy did not see or remember the “farmer” but DOES remember me in the bed of the truck pointing a flashlight at myself to light up the high vis so HE could find the truck over the top of the corn.
    3) same job, driving back late at night, truck next to us driving the wrong way in the lane. We SAW it and honked at it, trying to let it in. And then we saw it get hit by a semi-truck. We pulled over, raced to go see if we could help… no car, no debri, nothing. We got to a gas station and took a minute before we went home.

    1. Just Want A Nap*

      The laser had been repaired badly, so some dust would activate the switch and have it start cutting the last project of the day again. That one was a long running joke of “It’s just haunted, unplug it so it doesn’t catch fire when you’re not using it.”

    2. Turtlewings*

      So wait, were you in fact lighting yourself up in the back of truck, after you found it?

      (Also, I would absolutely need a minute after #3 as well!)

      1. Just Want A Nap*

        Basically yeah, I found the truck and shined a light on myself so I’d be a beacon because it was getting dark and that particular company wouldn’t give us walkie-talkies for areas of no cell signal, and my coworker was missing in the corn.

        But yeah I don’t trust the cornfields. I work for a new company doing the same job and my boss heard some of the stories and joked that they’d send me out with the newbies so they’d get to see the hauntings first hand.

        1. KateM*

          Mm, but hi-vis vests reflect light back to the direction it came from (so, from car lights back to car). So unless you happened to show the light from the exact same direction that your friend was approaching, the vest didn’t really help any.

          1. Just Want A Nap*

            IDK he said he found the truck because he saw me, and he had the keys so I’m not fully questioning it.

    3. Juneybug*

      Years ago, we lived off a dirt road in Nebraska, surrounded by corn and soy fields. When farmers were out late at light harvesting, we use to joke that outside was an UFO – unidentified farming object. Just you had an experience with an unidentified farmer object. :)

    4. Adds*

      Oh gosh, cornfields. Nope. No thank you. I don’t know what it is about cornfields but they are … unnerving. And it has nothing to do with scary movies that I’ve seen, they’re just … they make me feel really really uncomfortable.

      Reading your story actually gave me goosebumps and made me choke up and get teary-eyed. Please imagine that gif of Michael Scott from the office saying “no” repeatedly and then the one of him saying “nope, don’t like that.” That wins my (pretend) vote for the scary story of the day. And more for you having to go into the creepy cornfields than the disappearing man.

      The disappearing car wreck also gets a vote. Yikes.

      1. Just Want A Nap*

        I just have, as my boss puts it, the worst luck with weird encounters. He did briefly question if I was doing something wrong but then went on several fielding trips with me and realized no, no I just run into weird situations.
        So now they send new hires out with me because it helps teach them what to do and “how weird is TO weird.”

  27. Serin*

    Don’t know if this counts as in the workplace, but it happened while on the job: Twenty years ago, the spouse was a journalist. One of those TV shows investigating “haunted happenings” came to town to shoot an episode in an old city building, and he went to do a story on it.

    He said the things they found all seemed completely explicable to him. Of course the doors swing open — it’s an old building and has settled unevenly. Of course there’s a draft — it’s an old building and not well insulated.

    But when he first arrived on the scene, as soon as he walked into the room, the “medium” told him, “I can’t hear you because the old man with you is yelling so loud.”

    “What’s he yelling?”

    “He wants me to tell you that none of it was your fault.”

    (The spouse’s much-loved grandfather had died fairly recently. When we talked about it, we both agreed that if you said something like that, almost anyone would be able to think of an “old man” who might be yelling at them or to them — it was a pretty safe bet for her to say that. But we also both agreed that it was spooky as hell.)

  28. KatieP*

    No one ever talked about it until after I transferred to another department, but the print shop I used to work at was definitely haunted. No idea who the ghost was, but it liked to call me from my own extension, or non-existent extensions within the shop. No EVP or communication, just a random call with no one on the other line. We had to recalibrate the thermo sensors on the alarm to not go off due to *cold spots*. And one time, I thought I saw the, “back-of-the-house,” manager walk past me. I was the only one in the building at the time.

        1. London Calling*

          Eight years old and at my grandmother’s place. Her back garden was very steep and backed onto a field that was also steep. I looked out of the window and saw a figure all in white standing with arms outstretched and robes billowing in the breeze as if about to take flight. Can’t recall wings, though :) swore up and down to my family that I’d seen an angel, to much eye rolling.

          Still think I did.

          1. London Calling*

            I looked out of the window and saw a figure all in white standing at the top of the hill with arms outstretched, I meant.

          2. KateM*

            More than eight years ago now, I once went to bathroom in the middle of night. We keep out bathroom doors ajar when not in use – and there, at door stood a small child in white robes – peeking in or trying to open door perhaps. I had to rub my eyes several times before I convinced them that it’s just the street light that shines in through bathroom window and out of door. Our baby got started soon after this.

    1. Pippa K*

      I had the opposite experience – I think I saw a…devil? Demon? Something evil, anyway.

      A few years ago I was on a tube train in the middle of the day (so not at work, but en route to work task, so I’m counting it for this thread!). Glancing idly around the half full carriage my gaze lit briefly on an ordinary-looking man in his 30s. We didn’t make eye contact, but I was suddenly overcome with absolute, bone-chilling terror. There was nothing unusual about this man – not his dress or behavior or appearance in any way – and I told myself I’d just had a weird moment, like goosebumps out of nowhere. I looked away from him, then looked back a moment later and the feeling of deep terror hit me again. It was so strong I had to force myself to stay in my seat and not move toward the door in panic. Everything in me was telling me this man was dangerous and I needed to get away from him.

      I don’t really believe in the supernatural and I’ve never experienced anything like this. He got off the train a few minutes later, the feeling subsided immediately, and the rest of my day was normal. But the sudden feeling of terror associated with this ordinary-looking man was so strong and specific that I’ve never forgotten it.

        1. ragazza*

          Sometimes our lizard brain picks up on warning signs our higher brain doesn’t–so yes, he might have posed a threat in some way.

      1. Sherm*

        I had a similar experience once. I was on the bus on my way to my internship, and this guy boarded. There really wasn’t anything alarming about him — just a young, thin guy of average height, no tattoos, no offensive language on his clothes. But, still, I had this unshakeable thought that this guy was VILE. I, too, felt fine when I left, and the rest of the day was unremarkable.

      2. WhiskyTangoFoxtrot*

        Ooh, I had that once, too! Made eye contact with a random man in Glasgow and the hair on the back of my neck stood up. All I could think was “DANGER!!!” Never had that before or since.

    2. Grey Panther*

      London Calling, I have no trouble at all believing that eight-year-old you saw what you thought you saw.
      I’m not specifically all that religious, but it makes me happy to think that a beneficent entity from some other plane of existence made itself visible to a little kid.
      Have had too many unexplainable experiences myself, in various parts of the US and the rest of the world, to doubt it.

    3. Hannah Lee*

      I saw what I believe to be an angel at work. I hadn’t mentioned it before because it wasn’t spooky at all. It was kind of nice actually.

      Things had been really stressful at that workplace for a while. I was working for a manager who seemed to sow discord in whatever he got involved in. There was constant in-fighting between departments, undermining, people bailing and some people doing things that were uncalled for and mean (making things harder than they needed to be)

      I didn’t have enough confidence to actually leave to find a new job, was just gritting my teeth trying to get through each day. At one point I remember thinking “I can’t fix what’s wrong here… it’s way bigger than me, a lowly support person in her 20s. ” It was a “let go and let God” moment for me.
      It was sometime after that – weeks maybe? – I was walking from production on the first floor to another part of the building on the second floor, and passed through the lobby, a 2 story atrium lobby, with a open staircase that turned and went back the other way as you went up. So basically you’d walk towards the front of the building across the lobby to the staircase, walk up the stairway headed towards the rear of the building and then turn to the right head to the offices, all the while with the entire 2 story lobby with two stories of glass in view.

      As I neared the top and was turning to the right, it was one of those ‘in my mind’s eye’ moments: I perceived … saw but didn’t really see? … a tall (as tall as the 2 story atrium) human-like figure standing like a statue, unmoving. It had straight almost shoulder length hair, and was wearing a long robe with light and colors that were shimmering and moving, holding a very large staff upright at its side, its back to the windows, facing the inside of the building with a calm face and blank eyes. I could “see” it for several seconds. When I blinked and looked again it was gone. At the time that experience gave me the sense that something bigger than me was watching over what was going on at that company and that I didn’t need to worry or be stressed about it. I’d never seen anything like that before or since.
      LC, it’s funny, I didn’t notice any wings either.

      Not long after, the company ran out of money, shut down, we were all laid off. (a few bad financial decisions and execution issues can take a tech company off the rails quickly) But I was completely okay with it, it was kind of a relief. And most everyone I knew there found new, better jobs pretty quickly. Don’t know what happened to the troublesome manager.

  29. Barbara in Swampeast*

    Not mine, but a friend works for a conservation agency. They buy farmland as it comes available and either lease out the land and houses, or add the land to a wildlife preserve. They stopped renting out one house because things happened in the house. The people who rented said they did not feel welcome there and they would get pushed or things would disappear. The final incident was when a renter was hit with a cast iron fry pan. Also, in another area at dusk, people would see a civil war era soldier walk through a field.

  30. Library Lady*

    At my last job (public library), we had issues with the motion-sensor security cameras turning on in the wee hours of the morning. I always assumed it was mice or something (we occasionally had animal problems), but one day, our IT guy showed me a clip from about 3 AM, with the camera focused on the entrance to the children’s department. You could see a shadow form on the carpet at the edge of the open door, and then the shadow moved like someone had taken a step towards the door, and then it retreated completely.

  31. Looby*

    Not really spooky but I did my undergrad at a very old university in the UK, they had an anatomy museum full of extremely inappropriate collections from the 1800s. There was a computer lab in there that I favoured because it was rarely used- somehow not many people felt like working next to a glass jar containing the preserved head of a 2 year old child. I believe now the collection has been stored away as administration realized how dodgy many of the acquisitions were likely to have been.

      1. JustaTech*

        At least there some of the stuff was donated by the person before their death, so at least it’s less … immoral? (Like, a lady with a very unusual bone condition donated her skeleton after she died so other people with the same condition could see it and learn from it.)

        I’d love to visit some day. In the day. Probably in the summer. You know, lots of natural light.

        1. Very Social*

          They have a great YouTube channel, if you want to get a peek from the safety and comfort of your own home! (But maybe you already know that, since they did a few videos about the woman who donated her skeleton! And several about a man–still alive–who donated his enlarged heart.)

  32. Spookyems*

    My favorite yearly post on AAM!

    I think I may have posted this before, but I can’t remember. I’ve had several spooky work experiences, most spookier than this, but I’m not good at telling those stories in writing. (Changing my normal username because I’ve told these stories IRL)

    My day job used to be as an EMT. One day we got requested by state police to come out for a patient. The call was located in a more rural area. It was about 3pm on a slightly overcast day, so not really a lot of shadows, and it wasn’t late and I was wide awake and not tired or anything.

    My EMS partner was driving the ambulance and we get to the scene and are trying to locate where we need to be. Now, to set the scene a little bit this was on a country road. There were some houses clustered together next to a small business with multiple outbuildings and a parking lot between the houses and the business. The address for the call was plotting at one of the houses, so I directed my partner to pull into the parking lot so we could look for the state police who were already on scene to figure out where we needed to be. Business as usual.

    As he pulled into the parking lot we are both looking around on our respective sides of the parking lot to find the state police cars. Clear as day I see a man dressed in dark blue lean around of the outbuildings from the business, look at the ambulance and give the “hey, come over here” wave, before leaning back and disappearing around the side of the building. It was only a second, but it was very clear and the blue was the color most of the local police wear (it didn’t occur to me until later that the state police wear gray). I told my partner to drive towards the building while at the same time commenting that they weren’t supposed to be at the business, but at the house. As soon as I finished noting that we observed 2 things. One, that there were multiple state police vehicles parked in the very back of the lot by a house, and two, no one was by the building where I saw the person wave to me, and also, there was nowhere for anyone to have gone in the very brief time it took us to drive there. There were no doors or windows on that side of the building and it was long enough that even at a dead sprint no one could have gotten out of sight in time. My partner asked if I was ok and I just shrugged it off, but I definitely saw someone or something wave me to come over. All of this took place over less than 30 seconds but it was just weird.

    Also, not spooky but a little weird. There was one time where we had an older woman who lived alone and would check in with her adult child every few days. She went to their home for dinner one night and wasn’t expecting to talk to them for a few more days. At some point after coming home and before the next morning she suffered a fall and struck her head. She managed to get herself to bed but unknowingly had a serious head injury. She lived in a home with a security system and fire alarm, and the next morning her fire alarm went off. The fire department was dispatched and found her collapsed on the floor after she had tried to get up to shut off the alarm. They called for us and proceeded to try to identify why the alarm went off, only to find absolutely nothing. Their meters showed no reason for that alarm to go off. Had that alarm not gone off she very well may have died in her bed because no one was expecting to hear from her for a few days and I think she was too out of it to call for help. I think someone was looking out for her.

    1. Spookyems*

      Oh, and I don’t know why I didn’t post this, because it’s even better and spookier than what I did post.

      I’m pretty sure one of our EMS stations was haunted. The truck stationed there didn’t run 24 hours a day so often I was the first person there in the morning and I always felt like I was walking in on someone. There always seemed to be another presence lurking around and it creeped me out.

      The layout of the building/property was that you would come down the driveway and drive past the building to park your personal car on the side opposite the road. The building itself was small with 2 garage bays and the quarters was just a crew room, a kitchen and 2 small bathrooms that connected to the garage via a man door. After you parked your car you would walk past the garage doors to enter the crew room via the front door. So anyone in the garage could see cars coming down the driveway and could see people walking past the garage doors to enter the building.

      One morning I arrived for my shift and my partner was late so I went into the garage alone to start my morning check of the truck and equipment. I was in the back of the ambulance but keeping one eye out the windshield to look for her car to come down the driveway so I would know when she got there. As I was checking through my gear bags I heard the man door between the crew room and the bay open and then close and then something smacked hard into the back corner of my ambulance. I thought it was my partner at first and was confused as to how I missed her both driving and walking past, but then everything went silent and I got out of the ambulance and realized I was alone. I walked through the whole building and even checked the closets and there was no one there.

  33. Teekanne aus Schokolade*

    Ethically icky but it was the 80’s. One of the largest state mental facilities in Utah was housed in a 1930’s castle built as one of those Depression -era job-making projects. Anyway, the “fitter” patients were allowed to participate in a fundraising haunted house that literally drew folks from all over the world. Admin flew in Hollywood special effects artists ahd everything. Mom says they glued hair to her hands and face and made her into a warewolf and she would work and monitor the patients within the haunted house. The draw: customers had NO idea who were patients and who was staff, including who was holding the chainsaws.

    1. former zoobie*

      Been through that one – it continued into the early 90s and definitely was ethically icky. The building was perfect for it, but the way they hyped the involvement of the patients was really poor taste.

    2. The Engineer*

      The hospital is still there and still on that wonderful site.

      To the other side of the story. That event provided a lot for the patients who worked it as well. Certainly the event played on the ‘you don’t know’ status for the participants. However, it was a way for patients learning to deal with their conditions to have a constructive structured interaction. It was a highly anticipated reward for them as they progressed.

      A difficult balance but one that was focused on.

      1. former zoobie*

        Not worth the deep play into the stigma of mental illness. Not at all.
        The interactions with people in the haunted house were not AT ALL like real life interactions. It’s possible patients selling tickets had some constructive interaction, but mostly it was an awful exploitation that did not benefit patients treatment or recovery.

  34. Irish Teacher*

    Nothing too weird but one time I worked in this old convent school that used to be a boarding school back until…the 1980s or 1990s, I think? Anyway, the mock exams took place out in the old convent building and I was going up the stairs and heard footsteps coming towards me but there was nobody there. The kids were convinced the place was haunted and completely freaked one time when we were in the library (also in the old convent building) and there were footsteps overheard.

    And a jokey one. I was subbing one time in this school that a well-known Irish leader attended in his childhood. Twice a door opened unexpectedly, both times when I was teaching the subject he taught when HE was a teacher later in life (not in that school) and which he was obsessed with. I joked that he was coming in to express his disapproval of Maths being taught by a non-Maths teacher. Haunting Maths classes was exactly the kind of thing he WOULD do if he were a ghost (and anybody Irish can probably figure out exactly who I am speaking of here).

  35. OrdinaryJoe*

    Was in the office early morning (6:30am) before almost any other staff was in the building because of a tight deadline … Went into the bathroom and the lights turned on when I entered, which meant no one had been in the bathroom for 20-30 minutes (green building, motion activated lights). I was in one of the stalls and heard the VERY distinct sounds of boots walking from the far side of the bathroom all the way past all the stalls toward the door.

    I was honestly too freaked out to try to see through the crack of the stall door. Never heard the bathroom door open, the footsteps just stopped.

    There was always rumors about the office and IT who were often in the building late or early reported hearing stuff. It was a modern office building, built in the 1970s/80s, but it was on the grounds of an old family farm from the 1820s.

  36. MI Dawn*

    Not in an office, but a house we owned. I was at the top of the staircase talking to my (then) husband when someone pushed my hard from behind and I nearly fell down the flight of stairs. There was no one behind me, and I wasn’t moving at the time. Fortunately, I was able to grab the railing so didn’t go far.

    The house had previously been owned by an elderly woman and her brother, built in the early 1900s. After the brother died, the woman used the house as collateral for a condo, decided she didn’t want to live in it after all so quit paying for the condo, not realizing that the bank would not only repossess the condo but also take her house. She was removed from the house screaming and crying, and died a few years later. The house was bought by a company and flipped, which is when we bought it.

    It wasn’t all the time, but sometimes you just felt a very cold draft. No one was ever pushed hard again, but once in a while you’d feel a tap on the back or shoulders. I wasn’t sad moving out of that house.

    1. Rainy*

      My first major at university was architecture, and at that time the arch department was housed in an old, very large home from when campus first started expanding. Built in the early 1900s, it is apparently widely considered to be one of the most haunted houses in the US. The organ loft is the worst place for it, according to both Wikipedia and my memory–the custom was that the first day of classes, the fifth-years showed the first-years around (and scared the crap out of them with all the ghost stories, almost all of which are completely made-up), with a special trip through the organ loft, which has entrances on both sides to the long passageways on that floor and overlooks the great hall, which is all panelled and has a huge fireplace in the style of the day.

      The tour would have everyone go the two steps down from the passageway into the organ loft and then stand there while the fifth-year ghouls said stuff like “IN THIS VERY SPOT she was MURDERED by Old Man [Name]” (none of which was true, she died of gall bladder disease and she was not young and beautiful, she was a middle-aged music professor) but it was good for scaring the first-years. Except I put one foot on the first step and was like “IMMEDIATELY NO”. I couldn’t do it, and wound up scampering the length of the house to the next access point for the opposite corridor and catching them up as they left the organ loft via the other entrance into the other passageway. I went up there once more a few weeks later and it still felt like immediately no, so I called it a day. Luckily it was just an organ loft, so not a big deal.

      Except that a couple of my classmates, that Halloween night, dared each other to go up and play silly buggers in the organ loft. One of them lingered looking down at the hall and something tried to push them over the edge. The one who didn’t get pushed was already in the corridor looking back and saw him stagger like he’d been shoved, but no one else was there.

  37. Master of Bears*

    So this goes all the way back to my high school theater kid days. My school had an amazing theater – it was built in the 1940’s by the CCC, and the theater was gutted by a fire and renovated in the ’90s. Obviously it generated no end of ghost stories.

    My junior year, I was walking down the hall next to the theater during an open period, and noticed that the door into the wings was propped open with a stick, and all the lights were on. I thought that was weird, so I went down to the theater teacher’s classroom and let him know. No one was supposed to be in the theater that day. He came back up to the door into the wings with me, but there was no sign of anyone in there messing around…until the director went over to the control panel by the stage and turned the lights off. As soon as the lights went out, we heard someone /running/ across the metal catwalks up above the auditorium.

    The only way into the catwalks was a trapdoor in the lobby of the auditorium balcony. The theater teacher took off running to the balcony to try to catch whoever was up there; I followed him because I was a dramatic theater kid having the greatest 3rd period of my life. We got up to the balcony lobby…and the catwalks trapdoor was closed and locked. It didn’t have a latch or any way to close it from the inside: it was either locked, or hanging open. Most of the theater kids knew that the key to the catwalks was in a box in the lighting booth…but only teachers had a key to get into the booth.

    When we went back downstairs, the lighting booth was still locked, the catwalks key was still there, and all the lights in the theater were on again.

  38. Silly Janet*

    I worked at a large community center that was temporarily housed in a national park for a couple years. It was right next to a massive, shut down veteran’s hospital. We were in the former nurses quarters. It was a beautiful and historic spot that I felt lucky to work in. I never personally experienced anything supernatural, but the place definitely had some weird vibes, especially at night and people were afraid to go in the basement, where there were large tables and sinks we suspect held dead bodies. A coworker of mine had a vision or saw apparitions of soldiers in camouflage rappelling down the side of the hospital once. There was also a row of boarded up officers’ houses. The day we went to war with Iraq people kept hearing doors and windows slam and the sound of people walking around inside of them.

    Tragically a coworker friend of mine took his own life while he was working there (not at the work site itself). Somebody saw his face in an upstairs window. Work was a safe place for him, so it wouldn’t surprise me that he hung around there for a while.

    1. Curmudgeon in California*

      Sometimes they need to be told that it’s okay, that you miss them but they should move on now. Apparently some ghosts don’t understand that they are dead, or are hanging around due to guilt. YMMV, of course.

  39. Olygirl*

    We owned a small fine-dining restaurant in a hundred-year-old two-story house. Upstairs was for storage and it was haunted. Going up the stairs meant you felt someone right next to you—every time. Heavy footsteps upstairs were the norm and commented upon by customers. Being alone after-hours was creepy. Several years in, we had a young woman visit before opening. She had lived in the house as a young child and asked if the ghost was still in residence. She said she would be happy to talk to the spirit and see if she could get them to leave. She went upstairs alone and after about 20 minutes the door to the stairs and the (locked) front door slammed open with me standing next to them. A big rushing wind came down the stairs and out the door. I guess the ghost left—we never heard footsteps again, though we were forever conditioned to feel creeped-out upstairs.

    1. ferrina*

      Wow. I am so curious about that young woman and her childhood. Was she friends with the ghost? Frenemies?

      1. Olygirl*

        When very young, she and her sister shared a bedroom and she said they were terrified and their parents didn’t believe them. That fed her interest and she didn’t seem afraid when she showed up—just matter-of-fact.

        1. MM*

          Ok, I’m writing a Supernatural spinoff in my head. She went off and learned everything she could about ghosts and how to handle them just so she could come back to that house as an adult and do this.

  40. Ladycrim*

    Here’s a twist on spooky work stories:

    I brought a plastic cauldron to work to hold Halloween candy. My director decided to bring one in as well: one of those with a zombie hand in the middle. When you reached in to get candy, the hand moved to grab you and a voice hissed “Happy Halloweeeeeen.” Cute, quick scare if you didn’t expect it.

    The hand worked by a motion sensor. Turned out the sensor was also affected by lights going on and off. One night, the director was the last one in the office. He turned out the lights – and jumped out of his skin when he heard “Happy Halloweeeeeen.”

  41. clue lady*

    I used to work at an escape room and while we had many a secret door randomly pop open, those were always explainable. The fact that several of the other businesses in the strip mall said they could hear creepy clown music coming from our business that we never played and never heard ourselves? a mystery to this day.

  42. SparklePlenty*

    I’ve worked in hospitals and nursing homes for eons. At my favorite nursing home I’d be standing by my med cart and would feel a playful but forceful shove in the small of my back every so often. Just enough to knock me off my balance and take a step forward. Always just outside of Room 112. Never a soul around ~ or was there? I think it was a previous resident tootling around in their wheelchair playing their little joke! Or I was in their way!

  43. Dawn*

    I worked in a converted 200+ year old historic row house for a couple of years. The space was absolutely beautiful but it gave me the creeps, especially since I was frequently there alone, working at one end of a long, narrow hallway. I would frequently, almost daily, hear things in other rooms and assume that my co-workers had entered the building through the front door (my office was at the back door, and the basement door, which had been sealed off during the renovation, was next to my desk.) I’d always be startled when I got up and found myself alone after hearing drawers open & close, muffled voices, and footsteps. I guess I shouldn’t have been too surprised when a local magazine did a feature on the history of the building and revealed it had been used as both a civil war hospital and a funeral home. The basement was where they’d stored the bodies. After that I always left before it got dark. Thankfully my bosses were very understanding!

  44. Former Retail Lifer*

    I didn’t see this myself, but multiple people witnessed the same thing over the years. I worked in the management office of a mall, and, several years before I started, the former head of mall security had passed away. He’d worked at the mall for many years and was known to be a dedicated employee. People who never talked to each other or met all had the same story: they were walking through the service corridor and they heard the elevator ding. The doors opened and they saw someone in a security uniform walk out and then disappear. I know everyone makes fun of mall security (thanks, Paul Blart), but this guy was so dedicated that he apparently continued to patrol the mall after this death.

  45. NetNerd*

    I live in the Boston area. The old Exeter Street Theater, which is long gone, now, but was down in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, was commonly listed among ‘haunted’ buildings. I knew a guy in the building trades who had heard “weird things” there. When I was working as an electrician in the late 1980’s, my boss and I worked in a residential building that had previously been a funeral home, and where a previous resident had hanged himself. We were working in a high-ceilinged unfinished basement area, and to get to it you had to walk past basement rooms at least one of which included a drain on the floor that I assume was used for body prep. This meant there was a sub-basement under that part of the building, which was accessible from a bulkhead against an interior wall in the main unfinished basement space. If ever something looked like the undead were going to come crawling out of it, that was it, and it just added to the creepy vibe we were getting from the building. We kept getting more and more creeped out as we worked down there and the afternoon sun went down. We practically ran out when it was time to make our exit and both decided that you could not pay us to work there after dark.

    1. NetNerd*

      Oh, one other story: tradespeople doing renovations over at Harvard – I think in the late 80’s or early 90’s – found an actual head that had been preserved (I think in a glass jar?) since the 1800’s or so, in an old lab area. They had no idea who it might’ve belonged to, so it ended up being treated as a John Doe, I think. After that, I am told that every single joke you might think of on the subject was used on the job site. “Yeah, we’re really A HEAD of the schedule, here…”

  46. Chirpy*

    My current job has men’s and women’s restrooms next to each other. One day we had a suspicious guy (probable shoplifter) go in the men’s room and disappear – employees were watching the door and when someone went in to check the restroom was empty. Someone outside watching swore they saw the guy come out of the women’s room half an hour later. They double checked the cameras, which point at both doors but obviously not into the restroom and didn’t see anyone going between the two, and they even checked the dropped ceiling – there is a solid wall that goes between the bathrooms, so he couldn’t have climbed through the ceiling. It was strange.

  47. Daughter of Ada and Grace*

    Not really scary, but it took place at school so I’m counting it.

    When I was a senior in high school, my great-uncle came to one of my band concerts. This doesn’t sound particularly weird – until you consider that he passed away when I was two.

    For this particular concert, I was playing his clarinet, and I had a short solo. (I didn’t usually play solos.) I felt a presence during my solo, sort of hovering over the auditorium seats maybe a third of the way back, on this same side of the auditorium as the clarinet section. I have absolutely no doubt it was my great-uncle come to hear me play.

      1. Daughter of Ada and Grace*

        Yeah, I need to get around to asking my second cousin (his grandson, also played the same clarinet) if he ever had any visits to his band concerts.

    1. ARROWED!*

      Where I went to law school, they have pictures of every graduating class hung on the classroom walls. I had several classes in a room that had my dad’s dad on the left wall, and mom’s dad on the right. I never felt anything (this would be a much better story if I had) but I like to think they were watching.

  48. Random Bystander*

    This is actually my son’s story. He works as an assistant manager at a sporting goods store, and these are things that have been observed since he started working there (so not just in this month), and he is not the only one who has had some of these experiences.

    In the front of the store, high up on the wall (higher than anyone can reach without ladders) are kayaks and life jackets. There have been frequent events where someone hears the kayaks (hollow) and life jackets (not so hollow sounding) being struck.

    He’s been in the break room with another worker, and they both heard someone rummaging around in the back room or stomping on the steel structures that hold back stock when no one is actually back in the back room.

    Video feed from two of the security cameras (back room and gun room) have been observed to be “shaking” as though someone had the security camera in hand and was shaking it side-to-side. These cameras are up by the ceiling, so cannot be reached, nor are they physically connected to each other. Others, in addition to my son, have noted this happening.

    Motion sensors have been tripped in the back room when the back room is empty.

    Once, when he was getting some stock to move out, he was in a position where someone would have to pass him to enter the stockroom, and he was alone in the stockroom. He had the sensation of being watched, and when he looked up (deeper into the stockroom), he saw a “black shadowy” shape at the end of the stockroom aisle which then abruptly moved into a wall and disappeared.

    Another event, when he was doing the gun check (they do this inventory twice a day at open/close–manager or assistant managers only), and he heard footsteps running up from the front where the kayaks are to him (guns are in the back of the store).

  49. Liza Yeager*

    Used to work for a local branch of nationally known thrift store. I worked in the toys and home goods area. There was a play area set up with child sized tables and chairs. Lots of dolls and action figures, guys, gals, wrestlers, super heroes, etc. We always cleaned and straightened everything before we left. Nothing left on the floor or out of place. Everyone left at the same time and the doors were locked and alarm set.
    Almost every morning we would come in to find the doll area looking as if a party had happened the night before. ( this was before Toy Story came out). No one could ever figure out how it happened.

  50. Catcat*

    I’ve got one. The hospital I used to work for was haunted. And the floor I was on was the old AIDS ward back with it was still the city hospital, it had long since been repurposed for outpatient day treatment. The rule was that if you were working late for whatever reason, you had to notify security at the front desk. That rule was in place for a reason.
    Even my manager who didn’t hold with ghosts changed her tune when she encountered one multiple times. It wasn’t malevolent, just a past patient who couldn’t get back to their bed. Once she moved her desk, she never saw him again.
    Nowadays, I’m with a different system in a thankfully not haunted building, just mechanically challenged because of its age.

  51. Grace*

    We are reasonably sure this was just bad electrical work, but the amusement park I used to work at had one ride that certainly could have passed for haunted.

    It had hydraulic doors into the ride area (you could also open them by hand, for safety reasons, but flipping the switch on the operator console was much easier) that occasionally decided to open on their own for absolutely no reason. Switch still in the “closed” position, no one standing within five feet of them, they’d just open. The ride also had pressure-sensing mats, which would stop the ride when they detected someone standing in certain areas. They triggered repeatedly – several times a day at the worst points – on literally nothing. We’d try to reset the mats using the operator console or having someone walk across them, and it just didn’t work. The console kept showing there was someone standing there. Maintenance could usually fix it with some poking, but occasionally they had to take the ride down for a few hours to mess with the system. I believe they were planning a full rewiring over the off-season, but I don’t know how that went.

    (No one had ever died on that ride, so it seems unlikely it was haunted – we’d had deaths in the park, but none related to that.)

  52. JustaTech*

    Two experiences in the same building, one actually spooky, one just weird.

    Spooky: My team had a project that required us to come in all night long (in shifts). I don’t feel safe driving after 3 hours of sleep, so I decided the safest and easiest thing to do was to sleep at the office, in the phlebotomy room, which had a cot/bed thing and a locking door. Part of why I wanted the locking door was that the night security guard gave me the light creeps. So I come back to the office, sign in and head up to the phlebotomy room, and settle in for a pretty terrible night’s sleep (the bed was covered in slick vinyl, and I was in a sleeping bag so it was a slippery experience). I wake up to my alarm about 3am only to notice that one of the ceiling tiles has been shoved back about halfway, leaving a good-sized gap. I decided that it must have been that way when I went in, because I didn’t want to think about the possibility of cameras or anything like that. But I never spent the night at the office again.

    The just weird: we have a smell ghost. People talk about ghosts that move stuff, or turn the lights off, we have a ghost that makes smells. In the middle of the day. There was the 3pm toast smell (in the hall outside the labs, when all the toasters were completely cold). The cut-grass smell the day *after* the city came to clear the hill behind us. The diesel exhaust can be explained by being next to the freeway, but the toast/popcorn smell, or the random nasty hydrocarbon (airplane glue) smell have never had a logical explanation. (I wouldn’t really care about the smells except that part of basic lab safety is being aware of smells because they’re often a warning sign of something serious.)

    1. Keymaster of Gozer*

      I think we had a smell ghost too back in the virology labs. (Tip: viral cultures don’t smell. If they smell somethings gone wrong or the bacterial culture from the lab down the road learnt to walk). There were many jokes about the ‘beer’ at a few 2am cell culture maintenance runs.

      Nothing in the lab should have smelt like beer, but if you were there at night sometimes there’d be a really strong smell of it. None of us drank beer either..

      1. Snowy*

        In college, we couldn’t figure out why the room smelled of alcohol, because neither of us had brought any in the room all semester. Turns out my roommate had an insulated mug that she’d set up on a high shelf, and unknown to her some juice had gotten in between the inner and outer layers of the unglued mug and fermented.

  53. Liminally Maple*

    I spent some time volunteering for an historical society in a small New England town. The building I worked in had originally been built as a memorial to town residents who died in the Civil War, then became a public library, then was occupied by the historical society. It was believed to be haunted and had even had ghost hunters come and detect cold spots and sounds. There were unexplained bumping sounds coming from a storage area periodically, as if someone was moving boxes around. On another occasion, I went into a rarely used storage area that mainly held historical files and found a box taken down and a file open on the table. No one had been up there in weeks. The file was historical material on one of the old families in town. Between that and the ghost hunters picking up “shhhhhh” noises where the reference desk used to be, I’m pretty certain the building was haunted by librarians!

  54. Not My Name*

    I have two, actually. The first was a little shop inside a historic cotton exchange that was known as a whole to be haunted (it was a stop on the local ghost tours at night). While I never saw ‘the lady in white’, I did often hear someone walking around the shop when I was alone, making the old floors creak in ways we knew the AC wouldn’t.
    The second was a shoe store in a mall; my new-to-us manager told us her first week that she ‘brought her spirits with her’ and that ‘they protect her’. We didn’t mind and thought nothing of it, until we each started hearing boxes move and shelves make noise when we were alone- which had never happened before she joined our team. Those random sounds also stopped when she moved stores again, so I think she definitely had something going on there.
    Happy end of spooky season to all!

  55. Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain*

    My org bought a large multistory building that was originally constructed in the 1960s as a bank. My department was the first to move into the building, on the 5th floor, and they were still renovating each floor over a long time. The elevators were…fun. They would spontaneously go to the wrong floor (second floor was the most often destination), lights inside the cab would flicker, the doors would refuse to open or only open about 5 inches, the cab would either stutter to a stop or come to a hard stop…tons of fun. A lot of folks chalked that up to being “haunted” but magically, when they replaced the 1960s wiring and aging mechanics, the ghosts moved onto the next plane of existence ;-)

    1. JustaTech*

      Oh man, I would never, ever take an elevator like that!
      Heck, the one in my building was acting up for a while and I just didn’t use it for like 3 years because I really don’t want to get stuck in the elevator with my coworkers.

      1. Pay No Attention To The Man Behind The Curtain*

        Well, part of the fun was that it wasn’t ALL the time. Just sometimes. So, maintenance would “fix it” and for a few weeks everything would operate normally, and then…press the button for floor 5 and have the doors randomly open at an unoccupied floor.

  56. Keymaster of Gozer*

    Yes, definitely. About a decade ago I worked for another branch of the railway and travelled to a lot of worksites in the south west UK. One time the engineers were out at a tunnel and offered to show us around (secret doors! Boreholes! Good job I’m not claustrophobic).

    So me and two engineers are in this completely shut down very long tunnel, no trains for miles and there’s a sound of a train approaching. We’re far enough back in a side tunnel that we won’t get run over but…the line is shut down. Then there’s the sudden gale force of wind being sucked out of the tunnel we’re in and clear sound of a long train going through.

    We checked with control room, signallers, line patrol…no, there were no trains on that line for over 24 hours.

    1. Keymaster of Gozer*

      To this day I don’t know what that was. Both of the engineers were pretty rattled too.

      We left the site a bit quicker than regulations permitted. Not quite a dead run but a definite ‘let’s get back to the van now for a cuppa’.

  57. Not A Raccoon Keeper*

    My high school was reportedly haunted. My mom had gone to the same school, and the boy behind her in homeroom had failed grade 12, and was furious. He brought a gun to school in the summer after the school year ended with a plan to shoot the principal, but couldn’t find him, and killed the janitor instead. He was killed in a wing on the third floor where students didn’t often go, and still don’t. That wing still has reports from teachers hearing filing cabinets open and close, footsteps after dark, stuff being knocked off of tables and desks. I guess the story of the janitor hadn’t been passed down, because when I was in high school I was the one who ended up informing my teachers of the janitor’s murder in the school. Some of them were really creeped out.

  58. Biff Chippington*

    Due to the timing of the lab work, I not infrequently worked alone late at night in a large manufacturing facility. One day, one of the managers asked me if I ever felt scared working there at night. I assumed she was asking because I was a youngish woman at the time. I said no, and she mentioned that some people from the evening shift had seen the tables in the break room move and had gotten freaked out. There was some construction work nearby and I mentioned it as a possible cause and then went on with my work.

    A few days later, as I came into work late at night, I heard the most sinister laughter from the TV in the break room. It was the creepiest thing I’d ever heard! People often didn’t turn off the TV when they left and I made a mental note to go to the break room and turn it off. I got settled in, did some work, and then went out to collect some samples. I went down the hallway by the breakroom and realized I didn’t hear the TV. I went into the break room and the TV was off. I was completely alone in the building. I could feel… something… in there. I basically ran back to the lab, did my work, and never went into the break room again the entire time I worked there.

  59. Not Australian*

    Many, many decades ago I worked part-time in an old cinema – in fact, it was so old it was called a ‘picture house’. I was still at school, probably about 15 at the time, and I had to get a special dispensation to work there on school nights. (Not my idea, my mother’s, but that’s another story.) At the end of the evening, when the patrons had all left, we had to go through the building to make sure nobody was hiding in the toilets etc., and put security chains on the inside of all the external doors. At this point in the evening most of the lights in the place would of course have been switched off (“we’re not ruddy wasting electricity!”), so we’d be wandering about in almost complete darkness with arms full of chains and padlocks with our manager, Eric, a WWII veteran who had an artificial leg which clanked when he walked, stumping around checking on us … and at the same time hyper-aware that there could still just be a stray customer trying to hide out somewhere in the gloom … and we were three defenceless females and a disabled man …

    Not spooky in a supernatural sense, but certainly pretty darn creepy and more than enough to frighten anybody!

    1. ferrina*

      We had opposite late night experiences! When I worked late as a teenager, I was savage. I wasn’t really afraid of the dark, because I was confident I was the scariest thing out there (I was a bit of a punk). Especially in college and grad school when I worked the night shift- at that point I was subsisting on caffeine and stress and almost certainly more irritable and dangerous than any ghost or disgruntled customer (especially when it was 2am and I just wanted to get home and get my precious 4 hours of sleep).
      Now I’m more well-rested and easy going, and definitely spook more easily!

    2. Silence*

      I am fairly sure some stragglers have a story of the picture house haunted by chain carrying ghosts

  60. HatBeing*

    I used to work in a retail store that was a renovated stable from the mid 1800’s. It wasn’t known to be haunted, but one night I was going over the closing procedures in my basement office while the staff was upstairs cleaning the store. I heard footsteps and saw one of the employees pass by my open door and go into the break room, which was right next to my office at the end of the building. I left my office to ask him what he was doing, but when I exited into the breakroom, no one was there. I checked the rolling stock shelves to see if he was looking for something there, but no one was in the basement. I ran up the stairs and he was there cleaning with the rest of the staff.
    I’ve had plenty of creepy feelings in the various old, converted buildings I’ve worked in, but this was the only time I saw anything.

  61. Hound Dog*

    Williamsburg, Virginia. I was a kid, but I worked as a character actor in Colonial Williamsburg for a summer (mom’s work was adjacent, I was old enough, one less kid to pay for summer care).

    I would. Not. Enter. House 32. It was an original building, survived the Revolutionary War and the Civil War, and had been lived in continuously from formation until handed over to the historical society. Plenty of people could enter and work in there just fine, but several others had the same experience as me – an overwhelming sense of dread and malevolence once we stepped over the threshold. I’m talking chills down the spine, cold sweat, pale skin, heart racing “I need to leave RIGHT NOW” kind of dread.

    The one and only time I got farther than 5 feet in, the very sturdy, very full, solid oak, screwed into the wall bookcase tipped over and almost landed on me, if my supervisor hadn’t yanked me back by my dress collar.

    Never set foot in that house again.

    1. Yoyoyo*

      Not work-related, but I had a very similar experience at one of the houses owned by the Shelburne museum in Vermont. I think the house was from the 1700s and was moved from its original location to the museum grounds. Stepped inside and immediately felt the “dread and malevolence” that you described. Noped right out of there.

    2. sagewhiz*

      On a trip back to Connecticut, where we had lived for a while, my husband and I went up to Salem, Mass., to do touristy things, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s house, etc. We visited the two-story house of a judge from the witch trials, listened to the docent/re-enactor downstairs, then went to the second floor and entered a bedroom. Almost immediately I had trouble breathing, feeling terrible pressure against my chest, and said, “I have to get out of here.” Scurried downstairs and the pressure was gone. We asked the docent about the upstairs room. She said, “Oh, that one? It was the judge’s room. It was where he made the decisions as to who would be pressed (by stones) to death.”

  62. Sloanicota*

    I was a wedding bartender at an old inn. All the booze was stored in the basement so we were down there before and after every shift, often alone. My coworkers swore weird stuff had happened but I never had a similar experience so I’d volunteer to put the leftover wine back after the end of the night (so late, midnight or after sometimes). A few times the stacks of boxes rearranged themselves when I wasn’t looking. So I’d pass a stack of wine crates, be unloading beer into the fridge, and when I turned back they’d be blocking the door, or about six feet closer. Never did figure it out. Still volunteered for the duty though. I liked it down there, it was peaceful.

    1. Turtlewings*

      Not sure I can reconcile “peaceful” and “sometimes the crates rearranged themselves to block the door”!

  63. Cranjis McBasketball*

    Not sure if this counts, but… my in last office job, I went to answer the phone, and my mother’s name was on the caller ID display. She had died a year before.

  64. Tigger*

    This is very silly, but my old office would decorate for Christmas, and one of the items was a singing wreath triggered by motion. I would hang it on my office door, but with the door open so it wouldn’t go off by people in the hallway. My co-worker and I noticed it would occasionally go off by itself, but thought it was just catching someone moving down the hallway even though it shouldn’t. Then we would come in during the morning and the batteries had been removed. Found out it would go off all night and drive the one person who would stay late crazy. Of course it was probably a malfunction of a cheap Christmas toy, but my coworker and I loved to joke it was a ghost coming to annoy us all. We even gave them a backstory of a lumberjack who had died in the area being intrigued by modern day technology.

  65. The OG Sleepless*

    This is quite low-level, but our receptionist no call/no showed the other day. The other staff members went to the reception area while they were figuring out how we were going to cover reception, and noticed a faint smell like something died. We searched through drawers and stuff and all we found was an ant infestation where somebody had left some candy. The dead smell finally went away. But I couldn’t help thinking, receptionist disappears, we keep smelling a smell of something dead…I kept my macabre thoughts to myself. (It turned out she just flaked out, sigh.)

  66. Often Off Subject*

    Only tangentially work related. A dear friend was visiting back to our hometown, where I still lived and worked. We hung out in the afternoon, then I had to go into work for a meeting. I went east to my job, she went west towards her parents’ house. Friend’s roommate from out of town had come with her on the visit, and was driving.

    I’m waiting for the meeting to start, when there’s a car crash on the main road right outside my job. I meander over to look and help, and there’s my friend, staggering around with blood dripping down her face. Her roommate had gotten turned around, and had the accident right in front of my job, that’s weird thing number one.

    I called her parents’ house and spoke to her dad. Weird thing number two, her sister had just woken up from a nap, worried, and said she had a dream about a blue car bumper. The other car in the accident was blue.

  67. Kirsten*

    I’m a library director. I often arrive at the library earlier than the rest of the staff, especially on Sundays when we open late. One Sunday, I had just arrived and was prepping the library for opening when I heard the urinal flush in the men’s restroom. I was SUPPOSED to be alone.

    I froze. Maybe I’d imagined it? But no, it flushed again.

    Should I call the police? Maybe one of my coworkers had arrived early…
    “Hellooo?” I called out, shakily.

    Then I heard it flush again.

    Finally, I grabbed a large flashlight we kept by the front desk (one of those huge metal ones) and cautiously walked into the bathroom.

    Where the urinal was flushing repeatedly, all by itself.
    Apparently the autoflush sensor was malfunctioning.


    1. Dust Bunny*

      I used to have a computer that had a short in it and would turn on and then dial onto the internet (in the days of dial-up modems) by itself. Harmless, but spooky. And expensive.

  68. She of Many Hats*

    My scariest work story involves a manager who meets most of AAM’s criteria of an horrendous manager but who wasn’t part of this story or firm.

    My eeriest was when I was a file clerk at a law firm. It was the week of Halloween in the upper Midwest so dark on either end of the day, cold and breezy. My law firm was on the top floors of one the city’s skyscrapers – high enough for the peregrines to nest on the ledges. My desk was in the file room next to the rolling shelves that held all the client files. For those not familiar with them, they are huge metal shelves on tracks that you roll sequentially to open the desired aisle then flip a latch to lock the shelf in place before you walk down to get the needed file. And, yes, more than once the attorneys would come in to get a file and NOT check if anyone was in the open aisle – my reaction times got to be pretty good and loud.

    I arrived early that morning with maybe one or two others on-site there but no-one near me and the room has only one door that I could see from where I sit. I sat down at the bench with my desktop and start logging in and suddenly I heard the shelves shifting against their safety latches ‘chh-thunk, thunk thunk’ as they rolled that tiny bit of space against their neighbor. A moment later the sound started at the other end of the room. You could see the crank handles trying to move against the locks. The sound kept going back and forth along the rows of shelves. I decided to go see if anyone had made the coffee yet for my floor….

    Soon realized that it was the building moving in the wind. The file room was in the center of the building near the elevators but there was enough sway built into the building to account for weather that, while I could not feel it underfoot, it was enough to shift the shelves. Completely eerie in a new way, now.

  69. Not Mad Just Disappointed Scientist*

    Hilariously, I’ve been training/working in forensic death investigation for the better part of a decade, and I’ve never once felt creeped out while literally surrounded by the dead. Lol. Though a couple times a pacemaker or cell phone will go off while I’ve been alone in the office or lab and I’ll think, “oh :|” (let’s be real, the living are scarier!)

  70. AnotherLibrarian*

    Not my story, but when my mom was in grad school, she had a gig organizing the historical documents in an old house where a Doctor had died. She lived there during the project and sometimes in the evenings, she swore she could hear footsteps in parts of the house where she knew there was no one. Little things would go missing. Occasionally, she’d find the papers rearranged, but the windows were all closed. It always felt like there was someone else in the house with her, but it was never malicious. When she mentioned it to other people, she was told that it was just the Doctor who’d died there. He was friendly, she was told. So, after that, she just started chatting with him and rolled with it. She’s not someone who normally believes in ghosts, but she swore there was something in that house.

  71. handfulofbees*

    Oh here’s time for one of my faves!

    A number of years ago, I was working tech for a summer outdoor theatre company. Because of the lack of storage facilities, we were renting space in the basement of the city armory. That year, we decided to clean out and leave, because the mold and dust was ruining everything down there.

    The costumes were stored in the old firing range. The room was long, and only the front of it was lit. Back in the dark, where the targets would’ve been, there was an eerie white shape, so naturally we went to check it out. And found The Girl.

    The Girl was a 3′ tall doll mounted upright on a plank of wood. She looked like the girl from The Ring – pale, white dress, black stringy hair. She also had no eyesockets. She wasn’t just missing her eyes – there were two circles in her face where the eyesockets had been cut out. Creepy as hell.

    So we started having some fun. We dressed her up a bit. We’d hide her in a corner to scare people when they walked by. Talked about stashing her in the artistic director’s office, or in the backseat of the annoying actress’s car.

    We spent two days down there, in the dust and mold. Removed tons of stuff. Bagged up the good costumes and props for donation. At one point, we lost the truck keys, and backtracked through the basement and then all over the city to find them (they were in someone’s apartment). Once we’d finished up, I went back down to the basement to double check we hadn’t left anything important (like the truck keys, again).

    I was down there alone. The Girl was standing at the end of the hallway. I did my check, then came out – and The Girl was gone.

    I booked it. It’s been almost ten years since, and I really hope she’s still down in that basement. Don’t wanna think about the alternative…

  72. NerdyPrettyThings*

    I used to work in a high school that still has a main hall that is original to the building from the 1920s. Many additions have been added since, but my classroom at the time was on the main hall. So many odd things happened that we just kind of accepted that we had a poltergeist. We named him George. I had two memorable encounters with George. One was on a weekday evening. I was working late in the evening, preparing decorations for prom, with a handful of students. The intercom kept paging the room, but there was no one in the office (or anywhere else in the building). The other time was a Saturday evening. I was there late again with a handful of kids and parents, this time preparing for a silent auction the next day. The toilets (not the automatic kind) kept flushing. Both times, I finally said in exasperation, “Knock it off, George!” and the phenomena stopped.

  73. Chris R*

    I worked as an on-call IT admin at a tech company and got a call about a server down at 3am – this was in the early 2000’s, so it was easier to go in and kick the thing than to fight through remote access, etc. Blearily drove to work, parked, headed in towards the front doors. Suddenly, I heard this ungodly, unearthly hiss – super loud – and at the same time in front of me saw this enormous, 30 foot tall head of a goose rear up. Scared the ever living heck out of me. What happened, of course, is that there was a goose nesting in front of the flood lights that were illuminating the building. I woke it, it hissed and reared up and in the process projected itself onto the building. Utterly terrifying at the time – but it sure did wake me up!

    1. Kimmy Schmidt*

      Oh man. I think geese are their own special kind of possessed. You don’t mess with geese.

  74. Crommulent*

    I worked at a music school in an old building that had been renovated several times since it was built in 1846. The basement was half sound proof rehearsal rooms and the other half was only accessible to staff with a scan card. This half was SPOOKY. It had never been used for public space, and with all the renovations around it, had become this maze of half walls, walled off rooms, and labyrinthine corridors used to store various forgotten items over the decades all lit by ancient pull chain lightbulbs. You would walk into a dark space and just flail your arms until you hit the chain to light the room. This is where we stored old records and lost and found; me and my coworker would spend hours down there filing in a lit space, but through the half walls all you could see was black and it always felt like you were being watched. Sometimes we’d hear doors closing in the distance, creeks, bangs, the usual scary sounds. We’d listen to our ipods and just get it done as fast as possible. Sometime weird things would happen. Files would be moved, the lost and found bags would be open, things you set down were gone and of course we joked that it was a ghost. One time my coworker left her ipod down there and it disappeared; she was irate, was sure one of us had stolen it and she quit soon after. I worked there for four more years. The last year that I was there, one of the admins needed to find an old historical instrument that had been stored down there years ago. So down we go, walking from room to room, wade into the dark, pull the chain and then move on to the next. Imagine our horror and surprise when one room illuminates and there is a cot, food wrappers, clothing, and my OLD COWORKER’S IPOD. Someone had been living down there in the dark the whole time. Campus police came and investigated and told us it was actually pretty common as many of the original university buildings were connected by underground access tunnels. Still creeps me out to think someone was down there watching us file.

    1. an infinite number of monkeys*

      Okay, this one is TERRIFYING.

      Your description of the half-walls brings back childhood memories of the cistern in my grandparents’ cellar – just a big, mysterious dark space behind a 3/4 wall that was silent except for the echoes of dripping water. Nothing ever happened, but that dark space behind a partial wall is creepy enough all by itself!

    2. meowwwwww*

      Okay I was halfway through and thought “oh sounds like the student who live in my campus building” and then it was confirmed. Yikes!!

  75. Delta Delta*

    I worked in a building that had previously been a funeral home, so there was always this rumor it was haunted. But really, it was just an old building that made old building noises and creaks. I was accused of ruining the fun when I suggested that probably spirits wouldn’t want to hang around the funeral home and they probably wanted to be in their own homes instead.

    1. Dust Bunny*

      I’ve always thought funeral homes were unlikely because the dead only pass through briefly on their way to somewhere else–they don’t have a longstanding emotional investment. I guess it could be the ghost of a former owner or employee, but in some ways that leaves very few potential haunters.

    2. Not Mad Just Disappointed Scientist*

      Similarly, I’ve worked in forensic death investigation for many years around hundreds of dead people and have never once felt a living presence among them. (Though of course, I’m a skeptic, and usually put things down to glitchy tech or worse, carbon monoxide leakage.) (God, can you imagine if *I* died at my workplace?!)

  76. Not my normal name*

    It’s twilight. It’s eerie. I’m working alone in an old renovated church building. The lights are dimmed and the outside doors are locked. Suddenly, I hear a ghost in the restroom! Eek!

    …a ghost TOILET, that is. 30 panicky seconds of googling informed me that as toilets age, the seals shrink and the resulting change in water pressure or whatever can cause the toilet to flush itself.

    I left anyway.

  77. Rory*

    My previous employer for.a while worked out of a fairly new building, so you wouldn’t really expect anything weird. But almost every single person who came in on the weekend saw a tall woman with dark, wavy hair walking around. There was a lot of glass in the office, so the assumption was that it was a weird reflection. But she would be seen even when there were no dark haired women on the floor. Also the alarm and motion sensors would go off even when there was no one there.

    I saw her both times I was in the office on a Saturday and tried to convince myself that it was just a reflection, even though I was the only one there and am neither tall nor did I have long dark hair.

  78. The Dread Pirate Roberts*

    I used to work in a fairly old library (hundreds of years old). We used to joke that the library was haunted by the first librarian who had ever worked there. The elevator had a habit of going up and down floors without anybody riding on it, and one morning I was standing at the desk sorting through the mail when out of the corner of my eye I saw someone walk into the library and stand beside me. I looked over to say good morning and there was no one there.

    But the scariest thing that I experienced happened when I was working late one night after the library had closed. I had to write something about the history of the library and so I went upstairs to our local history section to look something up. In that room there was this enormous credenza that was about a million years old. It typically took two people to open because the doors had swollen and seized over the years. It required quite a bit of strength to wrench open the doors, and when they did open they would make this deafening squealing sound, like nails on a chalkboard. Anyway, when I walked into the room everything was fine. I found the book I needed and my back was to this credenza as I was reading. When I turned around to walk out of the room, all four of the credenza doors were standing wide open. There had been no sound, and I was alone in the library. I decided the report could wait and literally ran out of the library. I never stayed late again!

  79. Alex*

    I worked overnights at a hotel, by myself, for six years. We had security cameras on each floor. When the cameras registered movement, a little red box would appear in the corner, and it would disappear 30 seconds after the motion stopped. A few times, the red box would appear and disappear in a sequence of cameras as if someone was walking down the hall, but there was no one there. Walking down the hall, there is no blackout area for the cameras, and they don’t pick up anything smaller than a toddler. So it was a bit eerie!

  80. Anon Archivist*

    I worked briefly in Louisiana in a historical building. Had been a family home for a long time, before being converted into a museum. I am not someone who really believes in ghosts or anything, but some of the overnight janitorial staff swore the place was haunted. I thought people were just being paranoid and people in Louisiana can be kind of superstitious. But one night I was working late and I heard what sounded like water coming from the basement, since we were near the river, I headed down to investigate. We’d had water issues and if it was something, I needed to report it immediately. I got down to the door to the basement and there was the most intense smell of water and rot I have ever smelled. Anyway, I opened the door, went down to the basement, and it was bone dry. It also felt intensely wrong, like I should not be there. It was summer and it was hot, but I felt something cold grab me and I ran back out of that basement so fast. The next day, I mentioned it to a coworker and she told me that one of the houses previous owners had drowned in the Mississippi. Since we were a museum, it was easy to confirm that was true. After that, I stopped questioning people who said the building was haunted. I don’t know if ghosts exist, but I knew I never wanted to be down in that basement after dark alone again.

  81. donuts in the break room*

    I used to work in the management office of a shopping mall. About 20 years ago, there was a horrible accident and a child was killed in one of the stores. Maintenance and security used to tell stories of nights where they could hear the pitter patter of kids footsteps in the back hallways, even if they were by themselves in the mall. One security officer even said that on more than one occasion, in the middle of the night, the coin-operated rides in the food court would start moving.

  82. Moneypenny*

    The building at my previous job had an open concept floor plan with concrete pillars to support the floors above. I was sitting at my desk and out of the corner of my eye I saw a black shadow go behind one of the pillars. I thought it was one my coworkers, so I called out to her. No response, so I got up and walked around to the other side of the pillar thinking she’s playing a joke by hiding behind it. There was no one there. Please trust me when I say there was no way she could’ve snuck away without me seeing her. “That’s weird,” I think to myself, and I don’t think it about it again until….

    About a week later I’m passing a coworker who’s got a strange look on his face. “Everything alright Newton?” He looks at me and whispers “I’m going to tell you something but you’re going to think I’m weird. I just saw….a black shadow.”

    We told no one else of our experiences, but one of the admins who used to work there swore the place was haunted.

  83. SheLooksFamiliar*

    My story isn’t scary, but it’s still kind of spooky. At a long-ago employer, the toilet in our visitor’s restroom would flush for no reason. Just that one toilet, in a fairly new building. We had some plumbers check the pipes, etc., and they could never explain it.

    Someone made a joke about the bathroom being haunted, or that the building was built on a gateway to another dimension, and the flushing incidents increased. It seemed like our unseen resident had a sense of humor, so we named him John. Some of us would say, ‘Hi, John!’ when we passed the restroom, and he would occasionally respond with a flush. It didn’t feel scary, it felt…nice. Spooky, but nice.

  84. TheDisenchantedForest*

    I worked in a mid-1800s house museum, and all kinds of spooky things happened there: furniture moving when you left the room; footsteps on an empty staircase; electronics going mysteriously dead when placed in a certain spot, and then working as soon as you moved them elsewhere.

    The creepiest thing was loud banging on the back door, which stopped when you touched the doorknob and then immediately started up again from the basement door. This freaked out one of our docents so bad she refused to continue working in the house alone.

    According to old stories, several people saw the ghost of the last owner sitting on the front porch for weeks after he died in the 1960s. It was an interesting place to work!

  85. Ann O'Nemity*

    I used to work in an old historic building downtown. It was built in the late 1800s as a beacon of economic prosperity with marble paneled walls, parquet wood floors, crystal chandeliers, and solid brass handrails. Ownership changed many times, and the building was not kept up as it should have been. By the time I worked there most of the luxurious features were well worn, stained, chipped, and/or covered up. Lights flickered, pipes clanged, and the temperature was uncomfortably inconsistent. The most commonly reported ghost sighting was of someone falling outside the windows, which was attributed to the ghost of a window washer who had committed suicide. Plenty of people believed the building was haunted. I’m a nonbeliever myself, so I could conveniently blame the creepiness on the age and condition of the building, rats in the walls, and falcons flying around downtown.

  86. Dust Bunny*

    Not my job, but an ex-boyfriend of mine was an overnight security guard at a rehab hospital (that is, people after injuries or surgery, not substance issues, so most of the patients were a) sober and b) not very mobile, which actually makes this spookier). There was a hallway that wasn’t used for [whatever reasons] and sometimes one of the room buzzers from that hallway would go off. We’re 99% sure it was a wiring quirk because it seemed to happen mostly when there had been drastic and sudden changes in temperature, but every time it happened he had to go check to make sure nobody was there–nobody ever was–and he hated it.

    The building wasn’t particularly old and wasn’t otherwise very creepy, but who knows.

  87. Mystic*

    First job ever. Was at a theme park. Closing. It was late enough that the music had just cut off and I was getting ready to walk up to the front. On the way, we had this little park area that had no lights. As I’m passing it, I hear a giggle! I stop, and peer into the dark, unable to actually see. I listen for a few minutes longer, because kids have trouble staying still if they’re hiding. Nothing. Was never able to find a living reason for the giggle.
    Told my friend who I met at the gate, turned out the Park was known to be haunted. Was actually on Ghost Hunters and what started me on ghost hunting myself.

  88. NerdyKris*

    “The next day, the glass walls of the fired guy’s office shattered. No one was near that office, no one saw anything suspicious, and we worked in a secure office so people couldn’t come in without us knowing.”

    This is why you always try to be friends with a ghost.

    1. irene adler*

      Yes. An ex-coworker told me about the ghost that resided in a house she shared with a friend. Apparently, the ghost was big on safety. They weren’t afraid of the ghost. And they learned to coexist with it.

      The ghost did not like when drinking glasses -the kind made from glass-were left by the bathroom sink. Every single time a glass drinking glass was left by the bathroom sink, they’d find it broken. Plastic drinking glasses were left undamaged. So when they’d forget, find the glass in pieces by the sink, they would apologize out loud to the ghost (apparently, they knew the ghost’s name).

      It was their habit to always hang up towels or mats in the bathroom. Nothing was ever left on the floor. However, if there was water left on the floor (like after a shower), they’d find a towel on or next to the puddle- as if to say, “wipe up the water”! It was noted that the towel did more than just fall from the rack. It had to have moved vertically to reach the water on the floor.

    2. Pants*

      Yup. My friend’s old apartment building was over 100 years old and very obviously haunted. The building had a little sideboard when you walked into the lobby that held several plates of offerings to the ghost[s?] from the residents. I always recommend a small offering plate if someone believes their place is haunted.

  89. H.Regalis*

    This happened to an old coworker of mine:

    She worked at a bar in a rural area. There was a customer who obviously had a thing for her. One night she left work after close (so the middle of the night), and after driving for a while, she realized that her tires were going flat. She stopped to see if she could do anything, and a car pulls up behind her: It’s Customer Guy. He gets out and says something about how it looks like her tires are flat, and does she need help? He could give her a ride somewhere.

    She recognized him immediately, got back in her car, and drove off. She drove with all four tires flat all the way to the nearest open gas station. Ruined the wheels. Customer Guy had hung around for weeks until he could figure out which car was hers, and that night had slashed the tires in such a way where they wouldn’t go flat for a while, and then had followed her. The bar had security cameras that covered where her car was parked, and they caught him on camera doing it.

    1. allathian*

      That’s creepy, and could’ve been dangerous for her. I’m glad she drove on flat tires even if it ruined the wheels.

      1. H.Regalis*

        Definitely. The wheels were nothing compared to her life. It was very dangerous and she was lucky to have escaped.

  90. Miette*

    Only slightly spooky: I worked in the children’s section of the local branch of my city’s public library when I was in high school. When I worked nights, I often caught a glimpse of someone just in my peripheral vision, but of course no one was ever really there when I looked. It was a definite presence–that seemed to be moving several feet away, but any time I looked there was nothing. I was told there was supposed to be a ghost in the building, and perhaps that was it? IDK they were a very quiet and considerate ghost if that is what it was–they never really bothered anyone :)

  91. Salt*

    I once worked in a lab with one other person where we ‘joked’ it was haunted- lots of weird little phenomena. But particularly there was a time for several weeks where the lab was plagued with a wretched smell (think rotting death) that would appear at random times and in very localized spots in the lab. You’d literally walk into the smell. It’d be in different spots, even sometimes right outside my office doorway but not in my office and not a few feet from my door, just right in the doorway. We tried figuring out what was producing it, tracking the time of day, where it was, if it was associated with anything. Couldn’t find a rhyme or reason. So, we started blaming the ghost. “He’s hanging out in my doorway again.” “He’s by the quant5.” “oh he’s moved to the centrifuges”
    Then one day my lab mate got cheeky and when the ‘ghost’ was hanging out right in front of the sinks my lab mate chastised the ghost, and putting up his fists, punched the thin air. At that same moment across the lab a beaker full of stuff he had had been working on slid off the counter and shattered. No one was around to have knocked it off.
    The ghost did not like being punched.

  92. Lab Boss*

    I was working in the lab late at night in a decripit creepy building, in the basement. As I did dishes with my back to the door, someone tapped me on the shoulder briskly. I spun around and there was NOTHING. Once my heart stopped racing and I could do some searching I realized that there was a slowly dripping water pipe overhead and the droplets had come down just on the thickest part of my lab coat so I hadn’t felt the moisture, just the impact.

    When I worked at a summer camp I regularly walked around the woods alone late at night. There aren’t many totally specific creepy occurrences, but anyone who’d worked there long would tell you that sometimes the woods are just dark, and sometimes they are DARK. The sound of things moving in the trees, often deliberately following you, dredges up ancient fear from the very base of your spine. The memory of a coyote stepping into the moonlight and staring me down, totally fearless, before slowly melting into the shadows is giving me goosebumps as I type about it, nearly 20 years later. Nature does not care about you, and it is terrifying.

    1. Grey Panther*

      Aaaaand now I can’t stop singing: “I was working in the lab, late one night, when my eyes beheld an eeries sight …”
      Perfect soundtrack for Oct. 31.
      hee, hee, hee!

    2. Dust Bunny*

      I got to work early one morning and turned on the coffee maker, then immediately got distracted doing other stuff. Suddenly, I heard something that sounded like someone rolling an empty metal library truck around the garage (our office has an attached garage). I almost went through the front door, glass and all, before I realized it was the crappy old coffee maker sputtering.

  93. Sleepless KJ*

    I worked in a school district out building for several years and it was pretty routine that my (locked) file drawers would slide open randomly on many days. My co-worker’s chair would spin around slowly from time to time, when no one was near it and her computer mouse was never where she had left it. If you were working in the building outside of normal hours, when it was quiet, you would hear children laughing and running in the back hallway. We finally did some sleuthing and found out that the building had been constructed on the site of a homicide back in the 50s. An entire family had been murdered – pregnant wife, husband and two children. We’re pretty sure our ghosts are the kids wanting to play.

  94. Pisces*

    I attended a conference aboard a permanently docked historic ship that had been turned into a hotel/tourist attraction.

    A speaker who was very familiar with this ship, was asked if he knew any ghost stories. He said that while he was guiding a private tour, he saw the ghostly image of a woman walk by. He was debating whether to say anything to the guests, when one of them said, “We saw it too.”

  95. MaybeMayQueen*

    I work an office in our historic downtown district. Our office is the only entrance to the basement, which is a dirt floor basement. I had a guy down there working on the foundation, and he asked me if anyone had been down there one day after he had left. Nope, no one down there, I’m terrified of the place (bad vibes when crossing through the door, I haven’t even made it down a single step without immediately turning around). But anyway, he said that he had a tidy pile of bricks he left down there, and when he went back down, they were scattered around the basement, not like they fell over, but they were placed around. He didn’t think much of it after but that solidified that I will not ever go into that basement.

    1. Eh, Steve!*

      Dirt floor basements creep me out. How can you know if you’ve had a serial killer hiding bodies down there?

      See also: sub basements accessible only by a trap door or other weird passageway from the basement above. That’s just automatically creepy to me no matter what’s down there. I don’t blame you for avoiding it.

  96. Former Disney Cast*

    Not precisely supernatural, but—

    When I was 18, I was in the Disney College Program, and worked near the Tower of Terror at Disney World. The first time I and the rest of my DCP cohort closed, at all-clear, the Tower was silent. The regular cast had told us it would stay quiet the rest of the night, because they cut the soundtrack at a certain point. 10 minutes or so later: screams. I just about jumped out of my skin, and if you’d told me it was ghosts I would have believed you! By the end of my internship a year later, of course, I knew the soundtrack did not cut out but played on a continuous loop at all times, even when there were no guests, and the streets surrounding the Tower include occasional screams to make it seem scarier and entice people to it.

    Also, people really do try to scatter cremated remains in the Haunted Mansion. Don’t do that. It’s deeply inconvenient and causes the ride to shut down until they can get a vacuum in there to clean up, so your loved one won’t even remain in the Mansion (pun intended).

  97. HailRobonia*

    In my first office temp job, when I was a alone, I would occasionally hear a weird raspy voice saying something indistinct. It came from under my desk. It was so quiet I was not ever sure if I was hearing it, or if it was an echo from someplace else.

    Finally I realized that my computer was set to speak aloud any system error alerts, but the volume was set to just barely audible. It was like the netherworld was letting my know an unexpected error occurred and outlook crashed.

  98. Book Lady*

    I work in a library and every so often when we are slow and very few patrons are around, we will hear books fall off the shelves or typing sounds coming from our public computers (when no one is typing). I am usually not working alone, but the few times I have it has been creepy. Our library was built on the site of a cemetery where a lot of 1918 flu victims were buried (supposedly they were relocated). Thankfully other than making noise our library ghost(s) haven’t caused us any other trouble.

  99. Anonymous for this*

    We had a case where we had possession of a deceased woman’s jewelry and other items during an estate dispute. Before the items could be picked up by her relatives, I saw a full bodied shadow person standing outside of the conference room where the items were stored. Not out of the corner of my eye, either. Like full on, no doubt as to what I saw. Once we were rid of the items, I never saw it again.

      1. Anonymous for this*

        I just blinked, and it was gone. It was one of the weirdest things I’ve ever experienced.

  100. Erin*

    My mom used to work in a department store that had a cute little restaurant on the 4th floor. The head chef who had worked there for over 3 decades died one morning all alone, and was found by a prep cook. After that weird stuff started happening on the 4th floor at night. My mom closed Friday nights and that was when the weirdest stuff would happen. The 4th floor was housewares and furniture. She would regularly hear someone walking around when she was doing her closing walk through, security alarms were tripped constsntly after everyone had left for the night (they often saw the gates moving bybthemselves on the camera), the escalators to the 4th floor were turned on regularly after everyone left, and small appliances were often found moved all over the 4th floor. The weirdest was there was a huge crashing sound one night while my mom was closing. Her and security went upstairs to find a display of small appliances on the floor, and a bunchbof boxes knocked over. They checked the security cameras and saw a food processor from the display go flying and take down the entire display, and half the stack of boxes appliances behind it. They thoroughly checked the entire floor, even brought in police, and couldn’t find anyone hiding there. My mom stopped going ton4th floor after closing without someone else with her.

  101. sewsandreads*

    Not me, but my mum. She’s always been pretty open to the possibility of ghosts, etc. It is apparently a given in my family that the people who can see the ghosts are my paternal grandma and I.

    Anyway, my mum was a teacher, and we were going around the various schools’ open nights to suss out where my brother and I would eventually go for high school. We pulled up at her work’s open night, I apparently got out of the car, said, “Nope. This is haunted,” and got back in the car.

    I have no memory of this. But every family member with us swears it happened and my mum apparently a asked the next day at work if there were any stories about ghosts there. Yes. There are many stories.

    My boss now used to go to that school (small towns) and she thinks this is great — because she also was convinced it was haunted.

  102. LizzE*

    About 7-8 years ago, I worked for a performing arts organization that had an office inside an old theater. It was easily one of the most toxic jobs I ever held, but one of the few amusing parts was allegations that the theater was haunted. It was next door to an old church, but supposedly the theater was on the grounds of the church’s original location. That made for interesting theories as to who was haunting the theater — nuns, clergy, grounds workers. When the location was converted into a theater in the 1920s, there were also tales of theater workers falling to their deaths from the balcony seats, adding to the roster of ghosts. A few coworkers were spooked by the theater and would not go to certain locations, mainly the 2nd floor bathroom; they would seek out bathrooms on separate floors because being in that specific one really rattled them. I used that bathroom frequently because it was right next to our office and never had issues. However, I did experience one incident in the theater I think about from time to time.

    At this job, I was in charge of our grant writing and marketing. It was the middle of summer and we had an upcoming deadline for a grant opportunity with the National Endowment of the Arts. My supervisor was out on maternity leave, so I was stuck being supervised by the board chair who had no term limits because she was the org founder’s daughter (so many red flags here). She was horrible to work with and because of how she managed, I was stuck at the office up until the grant deadline, rewriting/revising this grant application until it met her satisfaction. I am in the midwest, so the deadline was 10:59 pm our time. My computer was old and having many issues staying connecting to the wifi. Just as 10:55 hit, my computer froze. I kept resetting the wifi, but the damage was done and I was not able to submit the grant application. However, I did not have the heart to tell our board chair, so I told her it went through. It was six months until we would get notified if we got the funding and my plan was to be out of that job by then. It was a really low point for me in my career, but the toxicity of that place mentally and emotionally did a number on me.

    As I was leaving the theater, it was pitch black and I could not locate the light switch, so I just wandered aimlessly in the dark, looking for the exit. For a brief moment, I stopped and just sobbed because of how upsetting the situation was. And while I was standing there sobbing, I felt something brush against my back and against my shoulder. It was not that spooky though, more like comforting. I got laid off a few months because of financial reasons and as I was packing up my stuff, ended up fessing to my supervisor (back from maternity leave) that the grant application did not go through. She was totally understanding and she still gives me recommendations when I need them. However, I sometimes wonder if an empathetic spirit was consoling me that night.

  103. rina*

    i have several that are connected to actual people and that i don’t tell (i worked in long term care for sixteen years) but one spooky thing that happened repeatedly was that a person in the end stages of dementia, totally unaware of anything, would be moved to a different room and die soon after. we figured their spirit was just kind of chilling in their room and didn’t realize it could go, but when their physical form was moved it was like “oh. OH. i can go!”

    personal story, we chose not to tell my 100 yo grandmother when my identical twin died, and when my grandmother died a year and a half later she saw them along with my grandfather and her dad.

    we can only speculate why my twin chose to show up when i was an hour on my trip home, but possibly the choice words i am saving up for them refusing to quit smoking had something to do with it lmao. jokes on them, i added “actively avoiding me” to the list of things they’re gonna hear about :|

  104. ARROWED!*

    I was working late, probably the only person left in the building. Night cleaner had been and gone. Working away on my document when the deep silence is broken by a rattling, mechanical noise coming from just out of my view, right by the door into our office suite! I nearly jumped out of my skin. Was some weirdo in the building, coming into my office!? About ten seconds later I remembered that I had just hit Print and that the printer sat on the secretary’s desk… right next to the door.

    TL;DR scared myself with a noise I myself had just caused in a totally predictable manner.

  105. Jocasta Nu*

    I once worked summers a a historic site where they also provided housing. The small dorm space had once been th town’s first hospital. A room at the end was said to be so terrifyingly haunted that even the young, tough-guy types refused to sleep there. I had previously lived in a house where the previous owner had recently died, with no experiences, so wasn’t especially concerned, though I was not assigned to the bad room. The beds were ancient metal bunkbeds and I apparently flail in my sleep. I rolled over, flailed, and smacked my hand on the metal, crying out in pain. I then felt the bed sink down like someone had sat down next to me and felt my shoulder being patted and someone saying “there, there”. I was the only one in the room and the door was locked…I like to think the old Ursuline nun nurse was happy to have a patient instead of boy hooligan in her hospital.

  106. Haunted Chef*

    Hey so first time commenting. Me and my mom both worked at a restaurant at the same time and different times and this restaurant is haunted. I don’t remember the ghosts name but he (yes it’s a male ghost) is a prankster who loves to mess with people. The restaurant is open 24/7 only time it’s closed is 5pm Christmas Eve to 6am Boxing Day. I worked overnight for a while and once was talking to the only other person in at the drink station and we both heard someone calling us from the back of the store when we went to check some inserts fell of the top shelf. I once watched a row of glasses slide off the top shelf where we kept them and all break it looked like someone ran their arm along the shelf. Everyone who’s worked there at any time between 11pm and 6am have stories of things happening

  107. Former Director*

    I worked in a basic science lab about 20 years ago that was haunted by a nun. The lab was located in the basement of an old Catholic hospital whose claim to fame was that a movie was filmed there in the early 90s, I think.

    Anyway, when I started, I was told not to stay much past 5PM if I could help it, and it did get a little creepy. One of my friends was in the restroom, and all of the stall doors started slamming at once. People said they could sense the nun in the early mornings/evenings making her rounds (and I had another coworker who DID stay late one night and reported back that he had SEEN the nun).

    I had to wrap up a grant submission one Saturday morning. I took my husband with me- the lab wasn’t in the safest area of the city, so I didn’t want to be in the building alone. My office was on the ground floor corner and had a half-wall of windows on two sides.

    I had mentioned the nun to my husband, but he’s a skeptic and thought it was all basic science lab employee shenanigans. I was working, he was reading the paper, and all was well. Then all of a sudden he just looked up and all around through the windows. I asked what was up, and he said that he didn’t realize anyone else was in the building. I told him there wasn’t, and he suddenly realized that he had seen the nun on her rounds.

    The city tore down the hospital several years ago and replaced it with a federal reserve building. I like to think that the nun is still making her rounds and terrifying employees of the fed to this day.

  108. Accidental Tour Guide*

    For several years I worked the Christmas season at a somewhat fancy organic market in a gorgeous old building that used to be a train station. It’s very long and narrow, with high ceilings, brick walls, and a big bank of windows facing what used to be the old train platforms. As it was an old building, it had somewhat of a reputation for being haunted, some of which I experienced personally. Every so often, I would catch sight of a man in an old black coat and a cane, standing next to the wine rack, staring out towards the yard where the train platform used to be. I always would see him super clearly in my peripheral vision – clear enough I would sometimes start to ask if I could help him find something – but whenever I turned to look, no one there. I thought maybe it was just me seeing things, until I saw another long-time employee *also* start to say ‘Can I help you?” to the same completely empty corner of the store. When I asked her about it, she said it had been happening for as long as she’d worked there. The haunting, if that was what it was, seemed harmless enough—either waiting for a train, or browsing the riesling selection, he just liked to hang out. A few years later, this ghost was also credited for possibly saving the life of our security guard. Here’s the story: ‘Mike’ was walking through the darkened market late at night, on one of his usual rounds. Mike is an older guy, has worked in the building for years, and is about as down to earth as you can get. Everything’s dark, and as usual, he’s the only one in the building. Walking through the produce area, he heard a weird metal grinding noise coming from further down the building. He went closer, and he could tell he’s getting closer because the noise seems louder, but he still couldn’t really tell where its coming from. He’s still trying to figure that out when he hears a voice from *behind* him – the same completely empty produce area he just walked through—yelling ‘Hey. Hey! HEY!!’ Mike froze and turned around to see who was shouting, because there was NO ONE ELSE inside. A few seconds later, a large metal lighting fixture crashes to the ground about ten feet away from him. The weird metal grinding noises Mike had been hearing were the light’s support bracket in the process of pulling loose from the metal ceiling. No more voices after that, and no sign that anyone else had been in the building. Mike’s take on the situation was that the ghost had warned him. He believes if he’d continued walking and trying to get closer to the noise, he would have been under the light fixture when it fell.

    1. allathian*

      Oh, wow, that’s amazing.

      When I was a student, I often worked second shift. Now I’m not particularly scared of the dark, and there are very few areas that I’ll avoid at night. But one night when I was returning home, I didn’t take the shortcut through the woods that I almost always took regardless of the time of day. I just felt like there was something weird going on, and when I took my first steps on the shortcut, I felt what can only be described as bad vibes and walked the long way around, along well-lit streets. A few days later I read in the local paper that a young woman (about my age at the time) had been assaulted along that footpath, about the same time as I would’ve been there. From then on I only used the footpath in full daylight.

      Another time I went to a pizza place with a friend-friend I’d originally met at work after our shift was done. I’m usually calm to the point of being phlegmatic, but that time I was so untypically restless that my friend wondered what the matter was. I couldn’t say, but I just wanted us to take the pizzas to go and go to my apartment two blocks away, even if it was too late to get the to go discount because we’d dirtied the dishes. Anyway, we went to my place, had some great pizza and talked. When my friend left, I turned on the TV to watch the late news, and learned that about 30 minutes after we left, someone walked in to the pizza restaurant with a sawn-off shotgun and shot the place to pieces. Fortunately it was empty at the time, and the owner wasn’t hurt, but if we hadn’t left, we’d probably been finishing our pizzas just when it happened.

      My devout grandma was convinced that I had a guardian angel watching out for me both times…

  109. Marion the Librarian*

    I worked at a museum that has a research room and archives. As you can guess, there were always reports of the stacks being haunted by the staff members of the past. One time. I was walking up some stairs in the stacks and felt a hard tap on the top of my head. Of course nothing was there and I kept going about my business. A few months later, I was walking down those same stairs and felt a pair of hands on my back. I didn’t feel pushed but I felt them there. Of course, I was all alone again. Later on, we had an intern who revealed she had had a history of paranormal encounters and felt the presence of certain ghosts in certain areas. She said a man ghost stayed in that area of the stacks and liked to make sure everything stayed in order!

  110. MOAManager*

    Many years ago, I was the manager of a retail store at the Mall of America. Our clothes were trendy, dressy-casual clothing and our clientele were primarily women age 30-45 (as well as high schoolers who bought prom dresses there in the spring). At the register, we had glass case about waist height that had our accessories displayed inside. One night that I was closing, I finished counting the drawer, set my purse and the keys to the store on the glass case, walked to the back to punch out, and came back out to find the keys were missing. I was by myself in the store, and the doors to the store had been locked for 45 minutes, since the mall had closed. I looked EVERYWHERE. Pockets of my clothes, drawers, under my purse, in my purse, next to the computer where I’d punched out in the back, pockets of the merchandise. I couldn’t find the keys anywhere. I finally had to call the only other manager with a set of keys to come to the mall so I could leave and lock the doors behind me. It took her 30 mins to get to the store, during which time I kept searching everywhere for the keys. When my co-manager got to the store, we searched together for awhile because if you lose a set of store keys, ALL the locks and keys have to be replaced and it’s a huge pain. We thought a fresh pair of eyes looking couldn’t hurt. So I re-enacted setting my keys and purse on the glass counter, walking to the back and punching out, and coming back out to find them gone and told her all the places I searched. After another hour of searching together in the back — the only place we thought the keys could be— we walked back out to the store and the keys were sitting on the center of glass countertop. We SCREAMED our heads off. I grabbed my keys, she grabbed hers, and we booked it out of the store. There’s just literally no explanation for what happened and it terrifies me to this day.

    1. Gremlins*

      See, humans, this is what happens when we try to help you by giving the items back. You get terrified and scream. That’s why we have to keep them most of the time. P.S. I am getting fed up with all the socks.

      1. an infinite number of monkeys*

        Nobody ever gives us socks, but the typewriter situation is honestly getting a little out of hand.

    2. Counter-Intuitive*

      Hah! Not a work story, but same-same with a weeks-missing debit card. Looked absolutely everywhere at least 3x. Re-cleared kitchen counter, rechecked a stack of papers and squared the pile, did another circuit of the entire house and car, and when I went back to the kitchen the card was perfectly centered, right side up, in the middle of the clear counter. It made me a believer in the Alternate Universe Theory– it had simply blinked back in.

      1. Inkhorn*

        I had the same thing happen once with a book. Went to fetch it, it wasn’t there. Checked the whole shelf, still not there. Checked again, more carefully. Took every book off the shelf in case it had somehow ended up hidden or inside another book. Checked the rest of the bookcase. Nothing. That book was gone.

        Two years later I found it back in its original position.

        (That was in the house where I lived as a teenager, which had been bought as a deceased estate and which my mum swore was haunted. She always said there were odd noises very late at night, ones I slept too soundly to hear and not the mild settling you’d expect in a 1990s house built on concrete. It became a family joke that if anything went missing, it was the ghost – “Knock it off, Ruby!”)

        1. Curmudgeon in California*

          My house has… gremlins, fairies, IDK what you call them. You can set a thing down in the same place it belongs, and if the gremlins are feeling impish they will a) move it to another room, b) hide it completely, or c) hide it until you’ve searched the house twice over, then put stuff back where it started. You can usually get your things back if you say “Okay, kids, knock it off. Give me my ______ back.” They’re not malicious, but they have a poor sense of boundaries. If they get too obnoxious we set out some milk and snacks. The house was built in 1904, but at my previous residence there were some of the same things, and that house was built in the 60s.

  111. Student*

    I was a student working for the circulation desk of a library. Mainly, we checked in books that people dropped off.

    We had a drive-through box that people could drop their books off at. This deposited books onto a conveyor belt in the basement, which then dropped them into a box on wheels at the end of the conveyor belt. At least once per shift, I’d be asked to go get the books from the drive-through box. You swap the container at the end of the conveyor belt out for a new one, then roll the full container to a dumbwaiter that goes up to the circulation desk.

    The basement room with the conveyor belt was dimly lit, had junk sitting along all the walls for long-term storage, was replete with cobwebs, and was full of loud machine noises. Any time someone dropped their books, you’d get a creaky noise from the box opening up somewhere above you, followed by several loud BANG sounds as the books fell to the conveyor belt. So, quintessential spooky basement scenario. I tried to keep my time in there as short as possible.

    Then the shadow person decided to join me.

    I was swapping the full box of books out for an empty one. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a person move past the open outer doorway’s light, between me and the rest of the library. I turned around. I looked all over the room, carefully. Nobody there. Figment of my imagination. Went back to the box of books. As soon as I tried to move it again, corner of my eye, a person moves along the side of the room. Small person – large kid or small adult. No visual details, just a shadow figure that’s human shaped. I ran out of the room, sans books. Waited for a while in the clearly-lit hallway, where I was within yelling distance of friendly, adult librarians. Probably waited 20 minutes. Nothing. Nobody there. Went back for the books.

    This happened on and off for the rest of the time I worked at that library. Started calling it the shadow person, because that’s how it looked – not the shadow of a person, but a person made of only shadow, or seen only in shadow. Didn’t happen every time. Never figured out a pattern. I powered through it. Jumped every single time it happened to me, froze to stare at an empty room more times than I care to admit, occasionally brought a pocket knife with me – but I didn’t let it stop me from getting the books.

    To this day, I have no good explanation for the shadow person except an over-active imagination in a dimly lit, scary room. Felt real every time it happened, though. Still gives me hives to think about, some 20 years later.

    1. Allisen*

      I believe you. Libraries tend to give that energy off, in my experience. I love them though. Same with used book stores. I assume it comes from the well loved books.

  112. Cold Call Catastrophe*

    I worked at a church that had an employee that didn’t exist. Staff, clergy and parishioners alike would catch a glimpse of a woman in business attire just as she left the room. She was described the same way every time. We’d get questions about the “new minister” from the public and about the “new member” from the staff. I saw her once and thought she was a parishioner. She entered a very small room used as an extra study space. I went to the doorway to see if she needed anything, but no one was in there. The doorway I stood in was the only way in or out of the room. When I told the church leader about it, she told me about the woman. This woman didn’t resemble anyone recognizable, even by the founders of that church. It was always spooky when a sighting happened, but nothing more than a glimpse ever manifested.

  113. Former Costumer*

    I may have told this one before, but Halloween is every year, so:
    Back in college I worked in yet another of those haunted theaters, as a costumer. The building was from the 70s but still had its share of ghost stories and the costume shop was in the basement so the atmosphere, especially in the large costume stock room, could trend creepy. Mostly we just said hi to the ghosts whenever anything felt “off” and occasionally moved fast when locking up late at night. Ghosts or a suggestive atmosphere? Who knows.

    The one event I have the least explanation for was this: my friend and I were both working close to midnight as we were in the final nights before an opening. She was in the shop proper and I was in the stock room across the hall very unhappily restocking. I had a sudden feeling of absolute dread and GET OUT, and rushed to the door feeling a little silly and expecting to have to cajole my friend into helping me, which usually dealt with any creepy issues. Except… I met her coming out of the shop looking utterly spooked, mouth already open to tell me she thought we needed to leave NOW. Fastest lock up in our lives and we did it mostly in tandem or calling out to each other was we worked. We booked it up the long corridor and out.
    Nothing at all was amiss the next morning so who knows what that was about.

    That said, what honestly creeper me out the most were two other incidents: the first, when we found out one of the actors had been sleeping in the cats for awhile when between apartments. They were NOT a person I would have felt comfortable being alone with had I known. The second was when a security guard found an unexpected electric cord plugged into the wall in the corridor of the practice rooms in the building… and followed it into a hatch in the steam vents. Where it turned out someone had made themselves a nest and just added a scavenged TV. Again, in retrospect, NOT a comfortable discovery for anyone who had a habit of staying late.
    … if there’s a lesson here it’s that the real malevolent entity all along was the price of student housing?

  114. Admiral Thrawn Is Always Blue*

    My employer who shut down over the summer was reputed to have a ghost – or something – dressed in 1800s clothes. The building was an 18k sq ft office building, so not a remodeled house. They called her Lucy. I know of one credible person who swore they saw her in the third floor bathroom. She was blamed for a string of maintenance issues, including a major water pipe break between floors (ironic for an insurance company). The owner and witnesses came in one Saturday to sage the place. Others told me of having various experiences, though I never had anything happen to me.

    During the last days when I was at reception, the HVAC guy came in. Without any questions from me, he told me he thought the place was haunted, that all three companies to be in that building went under. He was the one who came in when the company bought it, to get the systems started again. Of course it was creepy, with mold (sat empty in Florida for years).

  115. Tiger Snake*

    A much more mundane story; I’m apparently easily forgettable. I come into the office and say good morning, get the automatic good morning back from whoever else is around, and then they get back to work and forget I’m there.

    I am also short; you cannot see my head over the cubicle partitions. And I often come in to work weekends – when basically the only other people Saturday are here because something went wrong Friday night and they haven’t gotten to go home yet. And I like to listen to classical music on the weekends.

    So basically; on multiple occassions we have had these exhausted men half-drifting off as they finally get the incident under control, only to suddenly hear a computer typing. They stand up and look over the office, to find every single bay is empty.

    And then the slow, omnious violin music starts up.

  116. TiredButHappy*

    I worked at a hospital that used to have a pediatric ward but no longer did. The room I would sleep in when on call was up there, and after hours it was ABANDONED. Lights off, nobody there. Hallways of empty rooms concerted to offices and outpatient clinics. (One of which we had permission to crash in).

    It was creepy. Super creepy. The original pediatric art was still on the floor leading to the rooms. The windows were frosted glass so you couldn’t see out or in, but nobody but myself or whomever was on call was ever in those halls at night.

    Abandoned hospital hallways are limitations spaces.

    One night I had just fallen asleep and I heard a rattle as someone tried the locked door, and saw a shadow in the glass. They hadn’t turned the hall lights on.

    I got up, opened the door and peered out and nobody was there.


  117. AnonymousJustBecause*

    I worked at a college that was fairly new construction, circa 90s, that was purported to be haunted. It had a large glass-in lobby that overlooked the parking lot. Toilets would flush, doors would creak, paper towels would dispense, and so on. I was there early one morning walking through the hall when I heard two female coworkers’ voices. “Ah, they’re here early,” I thought. I walked towards the lobby when I heard a male coworker speak. When I looked out into the parking lot, mine was the only car! I checked all the doors thinking maybe someone was waiting to be let in. It was definitely their voices though. The second worst was during COVID when I was again in the building alone. I would walk the halls the last few minutes just to keep an eye on things and lock up. I kept hearing the swish, swish of pants behind me like someone walking and heard a door shut. I opened every single classroom but found nothing. I locked myself in my office until time to leave!

  118. Allisen*

    I used to work in a hospital. If there is one thing you learn from ghost hunting shows, hospitals are a beehive of paranormal activity (Top is aslyums.) Anyway, to get to my area, I had to go through the basement (where our break room was), past the morgue, to get to the elevator, all the way down at the end of the hallway. I was in Environmental Services, and I usually worked by myself in the Psychological Behavior Unit. Another fun fact, this elevator is the one they used to move the deceased bodies from the morgue to the outside.

    I’m senstive to peoples energies, and I figure if a spirit wants to roam the hospital, it’s their business, not mine. I was there for a pay check. That being said, there was multiple times I would be walking down that hallway, and I felt eyes on me. Sometimes I would be cleaning a room after someone passed on and I would feel something in the room. I was always very respectful.

    A friend who still works at the hospital, but has been moved to administrative work, used to clean an outer building, at night. She said she heard a little girl’s voice, near the stairwell, frequently.

    A former higher up was staying in the former foundation house, built a long time ago and is currently where higher ups stay for long periods. He said he heard ghosts.

    So in short, I believe they exist. I will let them exist as they wish to. Although I cannot understand why anyone would wish to remain in a hospital when their dead.

    As for theaters, I believe they exist there too. I remeber feeling a presence in the old middle school, (now it’s an intermediate) one. It was connected to the cafeteria, and gad an upper level with classrooms as well. The feeling was super strong in the balcony, and behind stage. There was this massive prop/set room I went into once. There was energy there too. They might have redone the place now though, they have been revamping the campus one building at a time.

    1. Pipe Organ Guy*

      Theaters are well-known for having “ghost lights,” a single lighted bulb on the stage when the theater is closed.

  119. ZugTheMegasaurus*

    I’ve got a real weird one. For a few years after college, I worked at a coffee shop located inside a grocery store. One morning a week, a nearby assisted living facility would bring about a half dozen residents to do their grocery shopping (the facility had some apartment-style units with kitchens for residents who were still independent enough to take care of themselves). Most of them would come in and head right for the coffee shop for a drink to sip as they did their shopping.

    And most of them had a regular order, same exact thing every time; you could start making it as soon as you spotted them and have it ready by the time they reached the counter. But one guy, Neil, had a more adventurous streak and always placed a different order, sometimes decaf, sometimes regular, sometimes dairy, sometimes soy, etc., so you’d never know until he placed the order.

    One morning, Neil came in and ordered a drink, paid, and went to browse the aisles while he waited. I made the drink (in a cup with his name on it), placed it on the pickup counter, and promptly forgot about it while serving other customers. Maybe 45 minutes later, I notice that Neil’s drink is still sitting there unclaimed. I looked toward the front of the store and could see the rest of the assisted living group checking out at the registers. Figuring that Neil had just forgotten to come back for his coffee, I grabbed the cup and walked to the front of the store to give it to him, but couldn’t spot him. I asked the caregiver accompanying them if Neil was already back on the bus, and she looked at me like I’d sprouted a second head.

    And then informed me that Neil had died several days earlier.

    If it were anyone else, I would have assumed I’d simply gone on autopilot upon seeing the other residents, and just made the regular order for someone I hadn’t actually seen come in. But he didn’t have a regular order. I’m absolutely certain I talked to him and marked up that cup with his name and order and took his money and gave him his change. To this day, I have absolutely no explanation and it still freaks me out to think about it.

  120. BOOtsie*

    After my daughter was born I took a job cleaning offices because it allowed me to work part-time and opposite my husband’s work schedule. I was assigned a new contract, with a small church in the area. I went on a walkthrough with the cleaning company owner and the church secretary. My boss left after the walkthrough, and I was getting my things together to start cleaning when the church secretary said to me, “I think it’s only fair to warn you that the church is haunted.” I laughed nervously and she said “You might think I’m crazy, but it’s true. We know who it is, it’s Brother Wilcox. He was a founding member of the church and it meant so much to him that he comes back to visit now and then.” I was totally creeped out but also skeptical and laughed again. She said, “Laugh if you want, but if you start to get scared, just say, ‘Brother Wilcox, the office said I can be here and you’re scaring me so please stop’ and then he’ll stop.” I thanked her for the warning and got started cleaning and the secretary left. Nothing happened that night, or for weeks.

    I had mostly forgotten about it when, one night, I started hearing things. I was cleaning the bathroom and heard footsteps in the hallway. I knew I was the only person in the building, so I stuck my head and asked if anyone was there. No answer, so I went back to cleaning and, after a few moments, heard footsteps again. This time I left the bathroom and walked around the building. There was no one else there. I remembered what the secretary had told me but nervously laughed it off again and kept going with my work.

    I moved out of the educational building and into the main church building. I walked around the entire sanctuary and the offices behind them to make sure there was no one there and then I got to work, but I kept hearing noises. I tried to studiously ignore them, but I couldn’t. There were all sorts of things happening. I could see the curtains by the baptismal pool moving. I heard (what sounded like) the keys clicking on the old-fashioned crank handle adding machine in an office. I heard paper rustling, and at one point it sounded like someone was pressing keys on the piano.

    I was standing by the doors at this point, ready to run out of the building, and completely freaked out. I was wondering if I could get away with leaving without finishing the job. I knew I couldn’t, and I was too embarrassed to call my boss and say “I’m afraid there’s a ghost here, and can’t finish my work”. I also really needed the job – there were very few part-time jobs that offered weekends off. So in a moment of desperation, I did what the church secretary said – I said, out loud, and as loudly as I dared, “Brother Wilcox, the office said I can be here and you’re scaring me so please stop.” AND IT STOPPED. It stopped like someone had flipped a switch. I know there are a million reasons why it could have been anything other than a ghost, there are so many explanations, but it still gives me chills to tell the story.

    It also didn’t really happen again after that. I had that contract for about a year and a half until I found a different job, and only one other time did things get a little weird (mostly footsteps and some weird sounds). I just said, “Brother Wilcox, this is (Me), I’m just here cleaning and you’re scaring me.” I didn’t notice anything after that.

    1. Lemon*

      You reminded me of a story I read somewhere on the interwebs.
      The writers mother used to volunteer cleaning the local church once a week in the evening.
      The writer had been a little girl and would tag along, and she’d sit in the church playing with her dolls.
      One particular evening the writer had called out to her mother that there was a lady standing on the path between the church pews.
      The writers mother was particularly shocked then frightened by what she’d said and seen because it was completely out of character for the writer to make this up.
      So her mother grabbed her by the hand and marched out of the church as swiftly as possible.
      The most eery thing that happened that as they were walking out, the writer had apparently turned to look at the ‘lady’ that was still standing there.
      Her mother stopped volunteering to clean for the church ever since.

  121. SMH RN*

    I work at a psychiatric hospital that was founded in 1911. We’re mostly in new buildings but there is one hallway on my unit that has a small person you frequently see hanging out in one of two rooms. Multiple people have seen them and then when you go to check no one is there.
    Suuuper fun on night shifts lol

  122. Elmer W. Litzinger, spy*

    I’m a hotel night auditor. Our lobby is a separate building from the rooms. I got to work one night to find that an earlier storm had knocked down power to the hotel and the general neighborhood. This didn’t bother me – no power, no phones, no guests – plus I had battery powered lanterns and flashlights. And we’re in a safe area. So I hauled out my tablet and read.

    About 2 AM in a totally quiet lobby building I heard the sound of someone walking in the upstairs lobby area. I never heard our notoriously heavy, loud, outside doors opening. I listened until they just….stopped.

  123. LillyPop*

    My mum worked as a nurses assistant in Japan in her early 20s.
    One of the head nurses sent my mum to a patients room to grab a record, which mum dutifully did, then immediately left. The patient was sleeping and breathing at this point.

    Some time later, one of the nurses who was across from that patients room saw the curtains move.
    There were no windows open or air-conditioning turned on.
    The nurse then went to check on that patient, only to find that he’d already passed away.

    The nurse, who was unnerved by the moving curtains, asked my mum if she’d been in the room with the patient.

    Mum replied that she had indeed, but for barely a minute. (At this point mum wasn’t sure what was going on and had no idea that the patient had already passed).

    The nurse questioned my mum again then explained that she’d seen the curtains move right around the time the patient passed.
    The nearby nurses who overheard this were now freaking out.

    My mum was confused as ever, but when she turned to the head nurse (who believed my mum) she swore she telepathically heard the head nurse in her head saying “just say you in the room with the patient”.

    Mum relented then replied that she had been with the patient, eventually everything went back to normal, but later on my mum finally caught onto what had happened it gave her the chills.

  124. els*

    When I was a teenager, I worked in the parish center of my church (which happened to be attached to the school I attended from Kindergarten through 8th grade). It used to be a convent, but was at the time just a three-story house with a lot of unused rooms. I spent most of my work time in the kitchen, reading or watching TV (I was really only there to answer the phone and door, and to fill out mass cards on occasion). The pantry was a walk-in, and the door had a window looking in.

    One night, I walked past the pantry on the way to answer the phone and saw a face in the window. It was vague and shadowy, but definitely there. I paused, shook my head, and ran to the phone. When I came back, the face was gone. I definitely saw it a few more times that night, and was very glad to go home afterward. Other times I worked there I heard laughter coming from the upper floors; my mom told me I was just hearing sounds from the playground outside, but there was never anyone out there.

    I eventually mentioned this to my friend Nick, who very casually said, “Oh yeah, that place is totally haunted. Probably by nuns.”

  125. Lily*

    I once worked at a rural hospital that had a bathroom none of the staff would use. NONE of them. I took to calling it “the ghost bathroom.” Not that anyone ever saw anything there (that I’m aware of).
    The last time I went in, I told myself I was being silly for not using it, because it was RIGHT THERE and it was a very nice bathroom.
    The energy was not just heavy and oppressive, it was downright frightening. I had a very strong impression that someone was standing outside the door of the stall, staring at me, and the feeling was of an intensely angry person who wanted to do me harm. Never went in there again.

    1. Lily*

      correction: not “an intensely angry person”, that’s way too soft to describe what I experienced.
      I had the mental and emotional sense a man filled with rage and hatred who wanted to kill me in a horrific way.

  126. LadyVet*

    I got the fantastic Halloween treat of an invitation to interview for a job I think I’d be good at and find fulfilling. The woman who I think would be a direct supervisor (or grandboss) reached out, and when she sent me the dial-in number I noticed two other names, so I don’t know if I’ll be talking to three people or just her.

    Anyway, I’ve worked in two different allegedly haunted spaces. The first was my undergrad’s main library, where I had work-study my freshman year. The creepy occurrences — hearing chairs move, other weird sounds — could be easily explained away by the fact that the stacks connected between the floors, and there was space around the connectors.

    But my first real job after graduating was in a building that, according to local lore, was haunted by the madame of a brothel that operated when there were a ton of men in the area to work (I believe in a paper mill). The guys joked that they wouldn’t mind if she “haunted” them.

    The first inexplicable thing happened during the day: Two of the other reporters and I were back in the newsroom, and while the one next to me was blabbering on about something, the one diagonally across from me and I were making annoyed faces (about the blabberer) at each other, and saw a flash of light. Then we exchanged shocked faces. It wasn’t a lightbulb going out, it wasn’t even as high as the ceiling. Just a burst of light. The next day we confirmed with each other that the other did indeed see it, and no, it wasn’t a lightbulb.

    I was alone for the second; I had stayed late to finish a story (and use the faster internet), and looked up and the chair at the desk across from me was moving. The editor who sat at that desk had been gone for hours, and the newsroom was off the path from either of the doors (neither of which had been opened in some time).

    I didn’t stay much longer that night.

  127. Pipe Organ Guy*

    Many years ago I went into the church after choir practice (the choir rehearsed in a separate room) to put music away. I went into the church and locked the door after me, unlocked the gate to the choir loft, went upstairs and put my stuff away, as I had done hundreds of times before. This time, though, I felt something creepy (though I couldn’t see anything) and got out of there as quickly as I could. I told a few people about my experience, and no one laughed or ridiculed the idea. It never happened again, but I still remember it, over thirty years later.

    Where I work now, the presence of a ghost has been alleged, and some have had experiences that they ascribe to the ghost. I’ve never encountered this ghost myself.

  128. Tales from the Beef Crypt…*

    My first two workplaces were both haunted.
    First was a hospital (of course). Working the night shift, when I had to run paperwork from the ED upstairs to the billing offices downstairs, footsteps would follow you down the back hallway.
    Second was a beef plant and the office I worked in was one of the most active places I’ve ever heard of. It was a central room with four offices off of it, two on the north wall and two on the east wall. Almost every morning when I’d open up, a tall man in dark clothing would be by the printer in the doorway of the north-east most office. He’d move paperwork around on my desk when I wasn’t looking. And EVERYONE who worked there had seen him at least once.

  129. ArachNoThankYou*

    I recently learned my office has a “spider room”. I work in an older building and it’s always had minor pest issues, but they really let it go during the pandemic, and setting up a pest control contract has been difficult (we’re government). The spider situation is noticeable, but I usually only see them in the hallways/bathrooms and not in individual offices. Apparently, they were really bad in one office though, and rather than deal with the infestation, they moved the occupant into a different office and just… left that one to the spiders. It’s full of webs now from what I’ve heard.

  130. Letter opener*

    Yes! I was an overnight caregiver for an elderly gentleman with very progressed dementia. He would wake up throughout the night. Sometimes I’d just look up the stairs and see him at the top of them, with confused, dead eyes. When people’s minds have left them almost completely and their bodies are so old as well, it’s like they’re halfway to becoming a ghost.

  131. Jenny Islander*

    A volunteer likes to bring lovely bunches of flowers in one of her collection of vases, and leave them on the front office counter–a few feet away from my workstation–during the weekends.

    One of them was a biscuitware vase with interior and exterior glazing. It was fine when she left it, but on Monday the glaze was crackled inside and out. The ceramic was undamaged, but of course the vase was no longer watertight.

    A few weeks later I got to work on Monday and the front counter was sticky. I cleaned it up and kept discovering more and more, until I followed the trail to a beautiful ruby glass vase. I wanted to move the vase to find the rest of the sticky stain. A large piece came off in my hand when I touched it. Somehow, the vase had cracked all over in large pieces, letting the water leak out, but still stayed together.

    How the heck?

  132. Ralkana*

    I’m very late to the party, but I’ve had 2 experiences in my office that were unsettling.

    First, my coworker and I were working alone one night, and we had a phone in one dark, empty office intercom a phone in another dark empty office, and we could hear voices on the open line. We turned on the lights in both offices, quickly finished up, and left.

    Second, I was by myself one night and the phone rang through, which was odd to begin with, since we have an night time answering system that catches 98% of after hours calls, but the phone just kept ringing so eventually I answered it. Before I could say anything, I could hear the sound of several men’s voices chanting or singing in a language I couldn’t understand. I hurriedly hung up and it rang again as soon as it hit the cradle, same number displayed. I didn’t even finish what I was doing, just locked my screen and got out.

  133. UKDancer*

    I worked in an old castle as a student as a tour guide. It was allegedly haunted with various people having seen ghosts when they did the tour. I never saw anything myself. There was one spot I didn’t like near the gatehouse, though. During the Civil War Cromwell stayed at the castle and the next day shot a load of prisoners by the wall of the gatehouse. You can still see the holes from the muskets.

    That spot always felt cold even on a hot day, and I never felt comfortable standing there. I couldn’t say why and whether it would have been the same if I hadn’t known the history but there was something unsettling about it.

    I think the creepiest place I’ve ever visited was actually Edgar Allen Poe’s house in Baltimore. It just felt old and creaky and not very welcoming. The staff were lovely but the actual house felt unfriendly.

  134. Charlie*

    A few years ago I was studying at an animal college and my tutor told us a story that had happened to her. She kept noticing her candy was going missing, and assumed her colleague who shared her office was stealing it, though he denied it. On Halloween evening it was dark outside and she was working late, alone in her office, when she heard what sounded like someone walking around on the roof. She screamed and ran out of her office. A colleague came to find out what was going on, and he could hear it too. With someone else there, she felt more rational and wondered if a peacock had escaped – they often sit on the roof in the daytime, but are meant to be caged overnight. They looked outside and all the animals were accounted for, there was nothing on the roof, so they carefully removed a ceiling tile, only to find . . . the sugar glider that went missing a few months ago!

  135. elodieunderglass*

    I have a friend, T, who would post loving memories about her own dear late friend, E, on Facebook. After E passed away, T posted some touching stories and photos about spending time with E’s flock of sheep, sharing stories and memories that were heartfelt and funny. I never met E, but the stories stuck in my head.

    Not too long ago, I was reading Askamanager for something else, and clicking onwards, accidentally read the comments for a previous Spooky Story roundup. In the comments section, a shepherd shared a spooky work-related story about her sheep. The story was exactly the same as a story T had told, and had startling material evidence that showed that E lived near T.

    I wrote to T and sent her a link to the comments. It had definitely been an Askamanager post from E and that was definitely her old internet handle. T was very happy to collect another one of the “echoes of E” that resonate around the internet sometimes. It is amazing how touchable and close E’s presence feels, and how sad that she should be lost, when her comments on Askamanager are so near; it makes her feel so fresh and recent and tangible. It seems as if she should be someone meetable, as if I could reply to her comment here and she would answer, and I would have her as a friend as well. It is the friendliest ghostly encounter I can imagine, and reminds me of that Terry Pratchett quote: “They’re not gone while their names are still spoken.”

    1. anon24*

      Sometimes I look at older posts on here and see regular commenters who no longer post and I wonder if they just got busy or moved on to other websites or if they passed away. It’s sad to think that some commenters are no longer with us. Thanks for sharing.

  136. EvilQueenRegina*

    At my old job, when I first started there, we had one main office and three satellite offices, and when I first started as a temp, I was based in one of the satellites, which I was told had been a workhouse at some point in the past. Popular rumour had it that the building was haunted by a ghost that someone had named Edgar, with stories such as the time my predecessor (who was still part of the team but in a different role at another satellite) had spent ages helping her coworker look for a particular book, couldn’t find it anywhere, then the next morning it was back on the shelf sticking out in a way that they couldn’t miss it.

    It happened that I didn’t hear Edgar tales for months, until the time we were packing up the office because it had been decided that all the team would move in together to the biggest of the satellite offices. This one guy wasn’t pulling his weight with the packing, until the time I came in on a Monday morning to find the shelf above his desk had come down at some point during the weekend, scattering all his junk all over the floor. The joke at the time was that Edgar had got fed up of waiting for him to do his packing and decided to force the issue.

  137. zolk*

    I work in a historic building that used to be (at different times) a barracks, a police station, and the city’s first indoor pool. Our main entrance is actually half a level above street level, so “ground” is partially underground, and then there is a basement which has the remnants of jail cells and a pool in it.

    Building ops swears to have seen ghosts in the basement, and there are lights that just go out on their own all the time even if there are fresh bulbs. Electricians say there’s nothing wrong with the wiring.

    I personally don’t find it spooky (just bad for my allergies) but enough people who work here have had spooky experiences that they don’t like staying after hours or alone, especially on the lower two floors.

  138. Isarine*

    I occasionally take breaks from my main job to work in theater. Theater is, as I’m sure most people know, a fairly superstitious field, my favorite one is the ghost light that shines all night on the empty stage. And an empty theater building is just so much big, echoing, open space. Creepy sounds abound.

    So cue this show that’s too big for a theater our size, so big I’m driving out of state from my main job to work my costume gig on the weekends. I get there Friday at 8pm or so and get set up with a good pile of work, instructed to just do a few hours so I’m good to go for the next day. Well, my adrenaline was going from the drive, I’m a night owl, so 1am rolls around and I figure I’ll just finish what I’m working on. For all this time, I’m listening to music to disguise the echoes and moans of the empty building.

    And then, I swear, the mannequins moved. There were a bunch, and every time I looked down at my work, it looked like they were creeping closer in my peripheral vision.

    I know I was just tired and already primed for Creepy Stuff… but I packed it in that second and finished the job in daylight. Never been in a theater alone at night since.

  139. calonkat*

    Used to work in a museum that had some artifacts from Vanuatu. There was a little wrapped figure that gave everyone the creeps. When we had to move or clean the display, no one wanted to touch it (mostly female volunteers/employees). Visitors would report it GLARED at them. A cultural minister from the new nation of Vanuatu came to visit and identified it as a figurine used in mens rituals that was not for public display and was never supposed to be seen by women. We boxed it up and the entire “vibe” changed. No more complaints or comments, no uncomfortable feelings. As far as I know, it’s still boxed with a label explaining that it doesn’t want to be out of its box (and all the other information of course).

  140. Leslie*

    I work in a courthouse that’s over 100 years old. When I’ve had to work after hours or on weekends, and I’ve been the only person in the entire building, I’ve heard things like toilets flushing, the electronic keypads on the doors beeping, and footsteps. The county jail was originally on the top floor of this courthouse so I figure that’s where it’s coming from. It doesn’t really scare me, but it does make my neck hair stand up!

  141. Gary Patterson’s Cat*

    Re: The Boy
    Well, at least this spirit is benign. Seems almost like he keeps them company if they want “the little boy” to join their events.

  142. Dove*

    At the hotel restaurant I used to work at (just got laid off a couple weeks ago), one of my coworkers warned me a few days in that he suspected the place was haunted. I made non-commital noises, because hey, maybe it is and maybe it isn’t, and there’s no point in being rude about what’s potentially just smalltalk.

    The place is definitely haunted.

    I’ve never *seen* anything, but there were noises – including sounds like people having dinner – well after closing, when I knew that I was the only one on the floor, and a very intense feeling of being watched. The noises generally didn’t start up until after the canned music cut out, though; I think the ghosts saw that as their cue that the restaurant was well and truly closed for the night, and that no one was supposed to be up in the restaurant level at that point.

    For me, it helped to say – quietly, where none of my living coworkers could hear – what I was doing that shift and that I’d be there after the restaurant closed for the night. And once I was doing the cleanup for the night, I’d keep a running commentary on what I was doing and what needed to be done next, so that they’d know that I wasn’t just dragging my feet.

    It never felt malevolent, just like they were pretty sure I wasn’t supposed to be there at that time.

  143. Lalaith*

    I work from home, and just as I was reading this I had a creepy experience! I looked up at my window – my second floor window – and saw what looked like the shadow of someone standing right outside it! I made my husband come investigate, haha. Apparently it’s just the shadow of the chimney on the house next door!

  144. Reluctant Mezzo*

    There’s an article in the most recent Economist about creepy stuff at the British Museum at night–some of which shows up on the CCTV. Sorry, paywall, but it’s…so not ever going to work there.

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