My negative feelings towards mascots go way back ... all the way back to my first year of undergrad. I went to a different University at that point. I transferred away after my first year. Perhaps because of this incident.
I was sharing a room with BFF in my sister's apartment. I had early morning class so I caught a ride with my sister, who worked on campus and started her job at 7:30 a.m. My class was not until 8 but being there 30 minutes early was worth it since I'd have to leave nearly the same time if I were to walk.
Classes did not start until 8 am, so campus was nearly deserted. I said goodbye to my sister as she made her way up to her lab and I kept walking across campus, towards the language building, where my French class was held. I was the only person in sight. On the way to this building, I had to pass under an overhead tunnel that connected one building to another. As I began to make my way under the tunnel, I looked to the other side and there, standing completely still beside a bike rack was a 6 foot tall White Rabbit.
As I made my way toward the rabbit, I had this deep, sinking feeling in my gut that he was going to jump out and grab me as I walked past. Even though I was mentally preparing myself for what I thought was undoubtedly going to happen, I knew that I would probably
Since I was the only person in sight (aside from the rabbit - who I am not entirely sure was a person) I knew I had to keep walking. It would seem somewhat obvious that I was scared of it if I turned and walked the other way.
So, I clenched my fists on the straps of my backpack and briskly began the approach toward the rabbit, all the while praying "Please don't let it jump at me. Please don't let it jump at me." I managed to get past it without it making a move. Super creepy, right?
I went to class and tried to erase the horrific mental picture from my mind. Around lunchtime, I was set to meet BFF in a courtyard to eat between our classes. When I met up with her, I immediately ran to her and told her the unbelievable story of the rabbit. She was as flabbergasted as I! We sat down and began to eat our lunch. At some point during our relaxing lunch period, one of us looked up and gasped. It's hard to believe, I know, but the rabbit was there. Standing motionlessly in the courtyard, it's beady red eyes staring us down.
We quickly packed up our things. Said goodbye and split off for class, hoping to never see that wretched creature again.
At the end of our day, BFF and I met up again to walk home. As we started walking down the pathway, one of us happened to glance behind us and saw it again. The rabbit was there! Walking a few yards behind us. By this point, we were both fairly certain that this creature was out to get us. It was clearly following us! (Because, you know, there is no way that this rabbit could possibly just be heading in the same direction as us - three times in one day!) We started walking quickly but were afraid that we would not be able to gain enough speed. So, I thought quickly and directed Katie to dodge into the nearest building and take a detour home.
Thirty minutes later, we were safe in the comfort of our apartment. Free from the terror of the White Rabbit.
That night, we borrowed my sister's car to go get some ice cream and do some shopping. In order to get to the area we wanted to go to, we had to drive through a part of the city that was wooded... dark and wooded. As we rounded the bends of the curvy roads we started talking about the Rabbit that had haunted our day. We began wondering what we would do if the Rabbit was in our backseat, if he jumped out of the woods in front of our car, if he was lurking there, waiting for us.
As any mature, 18 year old girls would do, we quickly locked our doors and I pressed the accelerator down a little harder to ensure that we would get out of the woods as soon as possible. We were only concerned with our safety, you know.
We never saw the White Rabbit again, thankfully and as the years have passed, the horror of the event has faded from my mind.
Until two days ago. When the nightmare returned.
I walked out of the library, on my way back to my office, when lo and behold, I was standing face to face with a giant Rooster. As though a natural response, my pulse quickened, my palms got clammy and I felt my body instinctively drift towards the periphery of the hallway, in order to put as much possible distance between myself and the Rooster.
I somehow managed to escape the Rooster unscathed. Unbelievably, he did not reach out to capture me into his feathery clutches. But, my friends, I am afraid that my luck will soon run out. How many more creepy, animal, mascot creatures will I possibly survive?