Horror lovers and ghostly souls, it’s that time of year again. The time of year when I wish I were in Salem, drinking mulled wine on top of Hawthorne’s tombstone and telling spooky ghost stories in the glow of flickering candle flames; the light of the moon illuminating graveyard silhouettes and squawking crows.
It’s Friday the 13th, which means it is the perfect time to be scared out of your wits. Here are some urban legends to ignite your fear.
The Poison Dress
A girl is asked to prom by a heartthrob of a boy and buys a secondhand dress from a store just outside of town. She feels like the most beautiful girl in the world despite the tightness of the dress at her throat. While dancing the night away, she begins to feel faint and excuses herself to the restroom where she dies; her young lover finding her sprawled out on the floor, as pale as her light blue chiffon. Upon the coroner’s examination, he determines that she was poisoned by formaldehyde; the dress having been taken off a dead girl’s body before burial and returned to the store.
The Girl with the Yellow Ribbon
A new girl moves into town and falls in love with the neighbor boy; they walk to and from school every day, growing up together and falling more and more in love. Since he first met her, the girl wore a yellow velvet ribbon around her neck each and every day, refusing to take it off despite his begging. “You’ll be sorry if I do,” she said. They get married in a blissful ceremony, but tragically the girl, now a woman, becomes quite ill. Before she dies, her husband makes one last plea to untie her yellow ribbon and she agrees. He pulls at the ends, untying the bow ever so slowly…and her head falls off.
The Lady in White
A teenage girl is kept in her house, away from would-be suitors by her overprotective mother. She begs and she pleads to go out with the handsome older boy who has asked her out. Her mother finally relents and after approving of the boy at the front door, she warily wishes her daughter a pleasant evening. The girl does not return by her curfew and the knock on the mother’s door well after is the police telling her that her daughter’s body was found strangled and brutally raped under the bridge over the creek. The girl, who is now known as ‘The Lady in White’, haunts this bridge and causes young men to careen off of the bridge in their cars as they attempt to avoid her ghostly outline.
The Phantom Hitchhiker
A young college boy is driving along a darkened rainy road when he sees a young girl walking along the side. He stops and asks her if she needs a ride to which she obliges and gets in the car. He notices that she is very wet and cold and offers her his sweater. She drapes it over her shoulders and points to a house down the lane. “That’s my house, there on the left.” He pulls in, walks her to her door, and feels a flutter of his heart as she kisses him goodbye on the cheek. The next day, he realizes he forgot to ask her for her name and drives back to the house under the guise of having his sweater returned to him. An old woman answers the door and after some confusion, informs the boy that her daughter had died over forty years ago when she was just nineteen. She directs him to the girl’s gravesite where he finds his sweater draped over the tombstone.
Holding long candles in a dark bathroom, young girls slowly say “Bloody Mary” in the mirror three times. On the third time, a female corpse appears in the mirror, long hair covered in blood with scratches down her face and chest, and she screams a bloodcurdling, death-inducing scream. The girls all die later on that night, strangled, their eyes opened wide in terror and their mouths locked in a scream.
Happy Friday the 13th; may your nightmares haunt you only in your sleep.
*all urban legend synopses written by Anjou. Items in photos available from shops on Etsy by clicking on photo.