When I was in 8th grade, I was in a group project with a very weird kid. It was an English report on Huckleberry Finn. We’ll call him “Ben”.
Ben had some sort of mental problem. He wasn’t stupid, he was just really slow, talked like a cartoon turtle, and was obsessed with two things: RC cars and ELO. We had a month to do a project on Huckleberry Finn, and I typically tried to overdo the requested work. My idea was to make a 3-D map of Huck and Jim’s journey on the Mississippi River, and Ben liked this idea, and kept saying he’d help me with it. FINE. So I start making a paper-mache map of the Mississippi River.
Then, Ben disappears.
Three weeks go by. I’m doing all the work. I’m freaking out because Ben is supposed to help with the presentation. Nobody has seen or heard from him. The teacher tells me if Ben isn’t involved, she’ll have to give me an incomplete. I’m having a slight 8th grade panic attack.
I decide to go to Ben’s house and figure out what’s going on. I ask the school secretary for his address, and I walk there, because it’s not too far. I knock on the door. I hear ELO playing. I knock louder. Eventually, a frazzled old lady comes out, I introduce myself, and she lets me in. ELO is playing at deafening decibels.
The first thing I notice about this house is there’s no furniture except for a big wooden stereo in the living room. No chairs, no tables, nothing. The second thing I notice is up high on the walls are rows of shelves about 6 feet up, where rows and rows of RC cars are set up. Hundreds of them. This is really weird to me. I’m shown to Ben’s room, where he’s sitting shirtless in the corner, rocking back and forth to the sound of “Evil Woman”. I FREAK OUT AND RUN. I didn’t even look back. I turned in the assignment and explained what I saw, and I assume CPS came, because we never saw Ben again.
To this day I’d never seen anything so strange.