This article was published in our bimonthly satire issue: The Zircon.
Mack Ranum—Staff Writer
Something strange is creeping into Dordt. Students have reported seeing unusual happenings around campus.
Several buildings have been reported for turning upside down unexpectedly.
“I just blinked, I swear, and Covenant had flopped completely around!” said Tami Van. She described the experience as unnatural and disorienting, like looking into the inner side of a spoon. Likewise, students have been saying similar things about cars and the clock tower. The events have been written off as the combined effect of morning haze and three-month old contact lenses.
Other reports include an ongoing investigation into a secret group which has regularly been meeting in the late hours of the night. This group, suspected to have cult tendencies, have been seen sneaking into labs and classrooms late at night, appearing only as dark shadows moving around hallways with blankets and 16 oz. mugs of coffee. In the morning, the only evidence of the ghostly presences are traces of gnawed popcorn seeds under desks and weird goo left on the walls.
One youngster with a buzz cut, short stature, and an unusual style of long white shirts, who has yet to be recognized as a student, has been found stealing food from the Commons. Last week she was caught smuggling whole tubs of fruit and Eggo waffles. Anyone who spots her is to report to campus security. One defining feature is a tattoo on her arm.
Students have also been stringing Christmas lights all over campus, to the dismay of maintenance. Strings could be seen trailing from the business office to West Hall, and haphazardly around East Campus apartments. While it might seem like students are eager for the holidays, the amount of energy they consume from constant blinking has resulted in their prohibition for the year.
Post-Halloween pumpkins have been crumbling and deteriorating all across campus, causing a stench. Maintenance has posted a notice that all pumpkins, no matter the state, be chucked before the end of the month. They have threatened to remove them soon and charge for the removal, because the stench is so intense.
The response to the popular show “Stranger Things” has been an oddity as well. With a movie poster that looks like a throwback to Star Wars, students are magnetized to this story of a fictional Indian town which smashes sci-fi and horror with Edgar Allan Poe.
“It’s so creepy!” said freshman Ted Lemongrass, his face contorting into a grotesque, crow-like expression. A whispering of the name turns half the room into terror-stricken civilians and the other half into a crowd of vociferous chimpanzees.
In English classes, the current strangeness is being analyzed in comparison to Poe’s short story, “The Tell-Tale Heart.” Poe was well-known for his parodies, according to Professor Matthews, like in other stories such as “The Devil in the Belfry” – set in the picturesque Orange City. In the show “Stranger Things” a special girl named Eleven channels her inner reality, not unlike the narrator in Poe’s story channels his version of reality. Her tendency towards silence labels her the lonely, genius figure in the story.
This seems to be a popular theme of strangeness with the theater kids especially, according to Josiah Wallace, theater professor. In the recently staged show A Wrinkle in Time, the characters were dressed in a similar 1980s fashion and battling supernatural circumstances with impossible forces, traveling to alternate dimensions of space and time.
The philosophy department posted warnings to report sightings of upside-down buildings, thieves, or other odd phenomena. They encourage students to stay safe by avoiding swimming pools, and middle schools.