Jason Wolf asks whether the fourth floor of the UM law library is haunted:
i think the fourth floor of the library is haunted. my proof is that i hear eerie music at strange times (like when no one else is up there except me) and it seems to be coming from the walls or the air. i’m not the only one who hears it, either. at first i thought it was someone’s computer, but it’s not.
Bricks on the Brain is dubious, but asks why the law library is so utilitarian, lacking the “hardwood floors or lush carpets, hardwood shelves, brass door handles, ornate light fixtures, portraits of prominent alumni, etc..” that he thinks raise the tone and are conducive to long hours of studying.
These are both good questions.
The law library looks Spartan because it was built with a firm eye on the bottom line. Doing it plush would have cost three or more times as much. That money would have had to come from somewhere. It couldn't come from the endowment, because there just isn't that much endowment. It couldn't come from tuition, because that's already too high. It couldn't come from crowding in more students, because we want smaller classes not larger ones. And it didn't come from donations, because no one gave us the many extra millions that would have been needed. So to “Bricks” I say — you're right, that would have been nice. If you strike it big in your law career, we'll still be here.
On the haunting question, I'd be perfectly prepared to believe that Soia Mentschikoff stalks the halls, especially the fourth floor which is where her most stalwart fans have their offices. But I can't figure out why she'd play music. Dropping something on you to get your attention might be more her style. Could it be the UM marching band rehearsing outside? Also, keep in mind that sound travels well through the floors. When the faculty member with an office under mine plays his CDs lound, I hear them.