There I stood at the counter on the 4th floor of the Montgomery County Courthouse Annex waiting to speak to a probate clerk about some paperwork I needed to file. Then I heard the noise.
It was coming from behind a door to my right. It was loud. It sounded like whatever was making the noise wanted to come through the wall. I probably should have been scared - but I wasn't. Maybe it was that false bravado from watching too many episodes of Man v. Wild and Survivorman.
I asked the clerk what the noise was. She told me, quite matter-of-factly, that it was the shredder and that someone was in there shredding papers. I asked her if anyone had checked in to make sure the shredder wasn't now the shreddee. I had visions of the clerk feeding paper into the machine and it grabbing her and shoving her through the blades.
I swear I could hear it shouting "Feed me!" from that closet. The clerk asked me if I wanted to take a look - but that false bravado had been replaced by my survival instinct and I declined. I took my file-stamped copy of my pleading and left the clerk's office without once looking back.