It is a truth universally acknowledged that every person has a creepy basement. From the mythic darkness of our childhood cellars to the sketchy laundry rooms of our apartment buildings. Even those with finished basements have an eerie room—you know the one we’re talking about—full of “storage”—childhood artifacts, seasonal decorations, and the boiler. Basements are common ground and the great equalizer; nobody wants to be trapped, alone, at the bottom of the cellar staircase.

While basements are often the creepiest part of our homes, they may also be some of the most sentimental. You might have experienced an evocative moment in a basement—maybe you’ve grown to see the space differently after finding your childhood dog’s collar. These moments catalyze stories, which act as narrative currency—everyone has had a meaningful experience in a basement, so everyone has something to share and offer. Some stories might be creepy, some emotional. Your story might be downright terrifying, while a friend’s might include something sentimental—stumbling upon a grandparent’s old belongings, or maybe finding your adult daughter’s first communion gown.

Drop us a line at joannbischof(at)yahoo(dot)com, or visit our Submissions page to show us your best basement story.