With the scariest month of the year finally here, let’s take a look at some of the spookiest places on Columbia’s campus. 

Dodge when a PE class is there 

There is something especially jarring about greeting a slew of PE-takers in the midst of your morning workout while you’re rocking pit-stains and a skimpy outfit not meant for underclassmen’s eyes. Plus, given the demographic makeup of gym classes, it’s likely that you’ll run into a minimum of one or two people you’re at least vaguely aware of—do you stop your workout to talk to them? Do you give them a half nod, mid-deadlift? Do you ignore them altogether? There’s no correct answer. Everything is bad.

Any enclosed space on campus during Bacchanal

No indoor space is safe during Bacchanal. You will see 20 million people you know, and you will not remember talking to any of them when you wake up the next day. Bacchanal is a lucid dream. Nothing is real. 

JJ’s when they’ve run out of fries

As an Ivy League student, JJ’s is easily the most stressful environment I have ever been in, particularly when they’re out of something. Every move you make draws attention to you. Everything you do is humiliating. Why are you standing there? What are you waiting for? What do you want? We don’t have that. What else do you want? Wrong. 

Butler during midterms/finals weeks 

Is everyone okay?

The stacks

Are those moans the wailing of a Columbia ghost hiding amidst endless rows of bookshelves, haunting the stacks for eternity, or, uh, something else…?

Barnard’s tunnels 

Reportedly initially used for Bloomingdale’s Insane Asylum, today the tunnels underneath Barnard are known for not only their efficiency, but also their very spooky vibes. At night, in particular, the tunnel system is truly the most liminal of spaces. 

Frats during the day

A post-apocalyptic nightmare world. I wouldn’t wish seeing frats in natural light upon my worst enemy. Where’s the music? Where are the people? What is that smell? Why is the floor still sticky?… No one’s spilled a drink in here since last weekend… I repeat: WHY IS THE FLOOR STILL STICKY?

Frats not during the day

Very loud. So many people. You recognize everyone but have never talked to a single one of them in your life. You want to leave. You can’t get out. Everything is wet. 

Public dorm-floor bathrooms


Image of the Spooky Stacks from Bwog archives