Tuesday, October 26, 2010

the mad scientist...

Just in time for Halloween, I thought I'd share a creepy story I heard the other day.

Keith was an old man when he moved into Apartment 15, but he'd never been married or had a real job. He didn't have time for all that. He was far too busy taking the bus to the Marriott Library to do research for his latest "experiments." You see, Keith was a scientist. In fact, he was a mad scientist in every sense of the word. He was old, had crazy white hair, drank strange potions, and owned enough books to be considered for an episode of Hoarders. And all of these books were crammed floor-to-ceiling into Apartment 15.

Keith was a little paranoid, too. He had fastened 6 extra deadbolts onto his front door so nobody could get in. He also didn't own a car, but would never, ever, let anyone drive him anywhere. Not even to church. Yes, Keith did go to church. Although Keith was a mad scientist, he was also LDS, and he walked to his ward building every Sunday. But he would never, ever, ever, ever, accept a ride. Instead, Keith would leave about 2 hours before church started in order to make it there in time. With his age, you see, he moved quite slowly. He was still about a half hour late to church every Sunday. And then he walked home.

The building Keith went to wasn't too far away from Apartment 15 - maybe about a quarter-mile or so - but it's a long walk when you move as slowly as Keith did. Witnesses claim that Keith was so slow it took him an entire 5 minutes to board a UTA bus. This is evidenced by the fact that Keith routinely got "sideswiped" by cars while he was crossing Highland Drive. He just wasn't quite able to make it across the crosswalk while the light was still green. And, of course, he always wore dark clothing. It was thought that these repeated run-ins with cars could have contributed to how slowly Keith moved.

One of the most interesting things about Keith was that he was blue. I don't mean the "depressed" kind of blue, I mean Keith's skin was dyed blue. According to those who knew him, Keith had re-discovered a tonic that people drank in the 1950's to "stay healthy." He also discovered that, apparently, overuse of this tonic would cause one's skin to turn blue. He obviously didn't test his products on animals. Probably because there were no pets allowed in his apartment complex.

Perhaps you're wondering how I know that there were no pets allowed in Keith's apartment complex. Well, that's because I happen to live in that apartment complex. In fact, I happen to live in the very same, infamous Apartment 15 that was once home to a mad scientist.

Keith has since moved on. Somewhat against his will, he was eventually transferred to an "assisted living facility" (aka mental treatment center). After he had been moved out, the apartment managers had a lot of work to do. Apparently the entire apartment had to be stripped - from sheet rock to carpet. It was remodeled, re-painted, and received all-new appliances and fixtures. It was all nice and squeaky clean, ready for the next tenants to move in. However, it took about a year to finally rent Apartment 15 since the entire neighborhood was well aware of the legend of Keith.

Daniel and I moved into Apartment 15 without any knowledge of this legend. It was the members of our Bishopric that finally relayed the story to us when they stopped by to visit - mainly because they couldn't stop staring at everything in our apartment. They kept telling us how nice it looked, and asking us if we had painted the walls or added the new tile ourselves. They seemed absolutely amazed. They admitted to us that they had wondered why two nice-looking young people would move into an apartment that was in such an awful state. After hearing the story, I wasn't surprised. The last time they had seen the apartment, it was pretty much condemned.

And that's the true story of the mad scientist who used to live in the apartment that Daniel and I call home. =)

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