Monday, February 1, 2016

Case Almost Closed: The Middle of the End of The Case of the Lady Slipper Stalker

[This is the Middle of the End of The Case of the Lady Slipper Stalker. See also Parts OneTwoThreeFourFour-and-a-HalfFour-and-Three-QuartersSuggestions for My Dear ReadersA Note from Mrs HudsonFive,  A Plea For HelpSix, SevenSeven-and-a HalfSeven-and-Three-QuartersEightA Most Ingenious TheoryNine, Ten,  Ten-and-a-Half, and The Beginning of the End.]

Blake & Elana
Dear, Dear Readers! After nearly an entire year of dreary inactivity, during which I have been subject to the most intolerable boredom, The Case of the Lady Slipper Stalker has, by happenstance, been resuscitated! Chance has breathed just enough life into its fearsome nostrils that it might expel its last fiery breaths before expiring once and for all. (I knew, Dear Readers, that my patience and perseverance would be well-rewarded one day...)

I was visited last Friday, the 29th of January, by young Master Blake Goldschmidt and his constant companion, the lovely Elana Neve. During the course of a pleasant conversation about their collegiate exploits,  Blake astounded me by asking if I would like, finally, to know the identity of the Stalker! Shocked and surprised, I spluttered out a vehement affirmative, and the young man proceeded to reveal the long-sought-after moniker of the Culprit. 

One of many bumper stickers in my classroom.
But before I share this most delicious information with you, my Dear Readers, I must reveal an aspect of The Case which I have heretofore hidden from you. Yes, I withheld from you a most disturbing element of the mystery. 

Back in March and April of 2015, the curious Case of the Lady Slipper Stalker moved into the ether of Cyber-Space. This realm of electronic communication was new to me, and I found it both terrifying and mystifying. 

I was being taunted by a Person known only by the curious Electronic-Mail address of Why would he use such a strange address? As many of my Readers know, my students--for varied and fairly-obvious reasons--sometimes refer to me as the Draagyn. My classroom is littered with dragon-related items, some of which are treasured gifts from former students.  
The Blue Dragon from Mr Zastrow

For instance, the esteemed Mr Mark Zastrow gave me this lovely Blue Dragon Statue when he graduated in 2005. He, along with two of his peers, wrote a haiku about their fear of the Draagyn, which I copied and taped to my Rocking Chair.

The Rocking-Chair Haiku

Sadly, I don't use my Rocking Chair much anymore, but as the Chair itself was also a gift from students, I would never get rid of it. 

Students entering my room are greeted, of course, by the Street Sign bearing my name, placed in the Transom. The sign showed up on my doorstep one fine summer morning many years ago, still partly-attached to the pole from which I struggled for hours to remove it. 

I later discovered that Katrina Wood (also, class of 2005) had removed it from its proper place and stealthily deposited it upon my stoop. Nygaard Road runs between Highway 2 and the St Louis River, not far from Floodwood, MN. I pass it all the time on my orchid-hunting expeditions into the north-central portions of the state.
The Street Sign in the Transom

And then, there was the Incident of the Rambunctious Brazilian: I used to have a dragon statue on a table in my room, but during a Random Acts of Shakespeare practice-session, a rowdy international student by the name of Italo Clemente knocked it off the table. The only identifiable piece now hangs from the ceiling next to a copy of a haiku the Rambunctious Brazilian wrote about this event.
All that's left of a broken dragon statue, along with a
haiku written by the Rambunctious Brazilian.

But I digress, my Dear Readers... 

Let me resume my tale. The Cyber-Stalker was clearly craving my attention, for he emailed me upon a number of occasions. We embarked upon a lengthy war of words, an exhausting duel of demands and denials. I submit, for your perusal, several Screenshots of our electronic conversation.
The first set of messages from Cyber-Stalker. Note the lack of question marks in his last message.
The second set of messages. My frustration increases.
The third set of messages, in which the Cyber-Stalker reveals his identity as a student.
As you can plainly see, Dear Readers, the Cyber-Stalker clearly wanted me to speak and write about this new element of the case, but I denied him that pleasure. Instead, because he had identified himself clearly as a student in one of my classes, I became ever more suspicious. 

I enlisted the help of Luke Braafladt, an enterprising young Cyber-Entrepreneur, and Mr Benjamin Gagne, also known by the confusing title of the Techie-Trekkie, to try and track down the identity and location of the Cyber-Stalker. Unfortunately, neither of these esteemed gentlemen were able to help me. After some time, I gave up. I despaired of ever knowing his name...

...Until, that is, young Blake decided to give him up. Much to my surprise, Blake told me that Sean Spencer (of the notorious Spencer clan) was the Lady Slipper Stalker!
Does the search above count as a variation of Googlewhack?

Taking up my trusty magnifying glass, I ventured out into the thick fog of Cyber-Space, searching again and again for the lair of the villainous Spencer Clan. I had no luck until I searched through the curiously-named Book of Face. There, among the treacherous Clickbait and the unceasing flow of trivial Status Updates, recycled Links, and ego-bolstering pseudo-Quizzes, I finally located the Culprit!

Yes, I made that! One must always acquire new skillz.
I snuck up on the Villain, and out of the blue, I posed him a question, translating my famous Death-Glare into Cyber-Speak:
A confession at last!
There you have it, Dear Readers, a long-awaited confession from the Culprit himself, the Lady Slipper Stalker! I even emailed one last time to see if the villain would reply, and he did. He even took what he called a Selfie with an item he had intended to leave upon my vehicle but never got around to depositing there. As you can see, the young villain takes much delight in having "stumped" me.
The last, undelivered "gift" of the Lady Slipper Stalker.
While this would seem to bring the Case to a long-overdue close, there remain just a few more loose ends. I myself made an appeal for further information on the Book of Face, in the hopes of binding all the threads together into one tidy weave, but I have as yet received no additional confessions.
A final plea for information--the items underlined in white remain unsolved.
According to Spencer, no other student was involved, so I must remain suspicious of my colleagues where the Photoshopped Image, the Unobtrusive Magnet, the Postal Card, and the Delicate Creation are concerned...
The Magnet & Card
The Delicate Creation
Young Spencer claims that he was the Ghostly Anonymous Commenter(s), but I'm not quite sure I believe him. If any of you, my Dear Readers, would like to confess to this or any other involvement, please do leave a comment on this post. I hope I will not have to wait another year to pen the next installment of this most strange Case.
Partners in crime?
[Update: On the 8th of September, 2016, Ms Kiero (a mathematical mentor to Middle School students) confessed on the social media website, the Book of Face, that she had produced the Delicate Creation!  I am so relieved to know of this fact, Dear Readers, and if any of the rest of you wish to confess to further involvement, I welcome your revelations.]
Ms Kiero 'fesses up!


  1. Ha! This gave me a good laugh for the day! Way to go, Sean.

  2. Still subscribed! So happy because this just made my day!

  3. While he may have made some anonymous comments, were they really all that Ghostly? If I were you, I would be disinclined to believe the claim that Young Mr Spencer is in fact me.

    1. Ah, Ghostly! Glad to see you're still out there, somewhere. I had my doubts about Sean being responsible for all your eloquent musings. Would you like to give us a hint as to your identity?

    2. You had doubts, but you also already had suspicions- Suspicions as to the corporeal form that drives this ghost. Perhaps the Great Detective would prefer to lay before the loyal readership said suspicions.

    3. You’re too eloquent for Sean (sorry, Sean)
      Possibly Diener or Pearson or Oswald or Ball
      Not quirky enough for Mattson
      Stiles & Greenan don't have time
      Fishel & Neblett don’t have time
      I’d love it if you were LaFond!
      I don't think Weaver is reading this
      You could be Whittaker...
      Possibly, you’re a former student or colleague…
      You're not really giving me any hints or clues...

    4. Hmmm, starting to think that Ghostly might be Blake Goldschmidt...

  4. Conjecture, nothing more. Guesses, really. Guessing will lead only to more questions. Which will lead to further questions, and then to still more questions. On and on the questions will go, ad infinitum, until the universe meets its end by the icy hands of the Laws of Thermodynamics.

    1. Yet another meaningless comment! Ah, well. I have great reserves of patience. I know that all will be revealed in time.

    2. Meaning can be found in most things, you simply must know where to look.

    3. Nice comma splice, there, Ghostly.

    4. You distract yourself from finding the truth by nitpicking at nuances of the English Language

  5. I remember one day in class you asked me to help you find the IP address of I couldn't figure it out, so I decided to go for a walk and found Sean in the Senior Commons writing you another reply. I came back into class laughing... It was really hard not to let that slip.

  6. I would never make a comma splice error, at least not since taking your class.