Last Night

On April 8, 2010 by Eden M. Kennedy

Last night about maybe 3:00 a.m., I heard footsteps in the living room.

Then the doorknob to our bedroom rattled.

“Did you hear that?” I said in the dark.

“Yes,” said Jack.

We waited. Rumbling footsteps in the hallway now. Jack got up and opened the closet.

“Do you want me to call 911?” I choked. I fumbled for my phone.

“No,” said Jack. He was calm.* He opened the bedroom door as quickly and loudly and decisively and sending-a-message-ly as a person can open a bedroom door, and then flipped on the hallway light, throwing himself into silhouette. A 6′ 5″ naked man holding a Masai spear in his hand. He disappeared.

*I wouldn’t go so far as to say that Jack has ice water in his veins because that implies bloodlessness, but there’s something cooler than average in there. Perhaps his liver acts as a refrigeration system.

Ten seconds later he came back and put the spear* in the closet.

*Just in case anyone is concerned about us having this weapon in our house, let me just assure you that it’s essentially a long, heavy, decorative butter knife.

“What was it?” I asked. I was breathless. I could hear my blood pressure rising.

“Nothing. Peewee sitting in the middle of the floor, looking at me.”

The dog in question now appeared and quickly tried to stuff himself under our bed. I gently unstuffed him and escorted him back into the hall (no sleep can be had with a snoring bulldog 24 inches below your head) but he seemed intensely reluctant to go.

“Peewee’s acting weird,” I said.

“This is news?” Jack said.

We turned off the lights and lay there in the dark for at least a half an hour without saying anything. I couldn’t sleep because I was extremely busy thinking about how some animals act weird right before earthquakes, which clearly meant that California was about to break off and sink into the sea, and Peewee had merely been trying to tell us to kiss our asses goodbye start praying.

“I just think he fell off the couch,” Jack said finally.

“Maybe he had a bad dream and then had to run up and down the hall to shake it off.”

“And then park his butt outside our door.”

“And the pressure of his butt against the door made the doorknob rattle like it was being opened.”

“And the next thing you know there’s a naked Mick in the hall with a spear.”

Jack fell asleep after that, content in the knowledge that he had protected his family from a dog with insomnia, whereas I was far too busy feeling around underneath my pillow and wondering where this weird grit had come from. Had someone been eating toast and shoving the remains into my pillowcase? Had perhaps a child with sandy shoes removed them and dusted off his dirty socks all over my percale sheets? Neither of these scenarios being likely, I finally concluded that some sort of “mind grit” sprinkles from my ears at night like pencil shavings as I process the preceding day in my dreams.

This morning I got up and had a good look at Peewee and, oh, dear. His face was swollen and I could see little bumps beneath his fur. The last time this happened we came to believe he was suffering from an allergy/flea bite combo plan, poor little uncomfortable guy. So that’s what all the fuss had been. I called the vet, dosed Peewee with fake Benadryl and Advantage, and gave him a very gentle scratch all over his poor, itchy body. Then he finally slept, which is probably something he didn’t do a lot of last night, trying to run away from his own skin. But hey, at least he wasn’t poisoned by psychopathic, alarm-circumventing burglars.

Update: He’s better! All praise be to generic Benadryl equivalent.



22 Responses to “Last Night”

  • Wahoo for DRUGS! Once I was looking after a giant, hyper dog whose eyes got so swollen he couldn’t see – so I gave him some wanna be Benadryl and he was better in no time. It is funny when I remember now, but I was crapping my pants when it happened. We have come so far since cave(wo)men and wolves.

    • Seriously, Erika. Then 200 years from now people will think we were such barbarians because we couldn’t inject healing nanobots into our brains.

  • “What? Oh, that’s just some mind grit. I’ve been doing some big thinking.”

  • I am glad your pup is better and I had to laugh at your husband and the spear. That is totally something I would have around the house. I use to keep a hammer in my bathroom when I lived alone, just in case someone broke in while I was in the loo.

  • I’m totally trading in my Mag-Lite for a spear, now.

  • How do you get so lucky that he’s better already?! My dog has her THIRD staph infection AND a yeast infection right now. She’s on two different antibiotics and we have to give her a bath every day for a week with medicated shampoo. Every day. For a week. Sigh.

  • Oh, that’s awful. A friend of mine just described how her dog had an epileptic seizure and shat and foamed all over himself. These creatures, when they’re not being adorable and loyal they’re breaking your heart/pocketbook.

  • I would like to be the first to nominate your ‘mind grit’ for federal office.

  • Oh, that picture is too much!

  • Alison, my mind grit respectfully declines the nomination as it is committing itself to its new responsibilities rattling around inside the vacuum cleaner.

    Karen, you have to see him in person to get the full effect of the chunky goodness.

  • I love the “mind grit” image so much.

  • Scruffy McDoglet takes his allergy pills every two days and if he doesn’t he scoots across the rug until his belly is rubbed raw due to itchy skin.

    On another note, about 10 years ago a friend gave me a pewter turtle bud ‘vase’ that is really a super heavy metal turtle with a bunch of metal spikes on it. I said, “Thanks, it is lovely, I will definitely use it for flowers.” But really what I meant was, “SUPER COOL, a deadly hand held weapon that looks like a household kitschy ornament!” It lives in the bookcase next to my bed.

  • Is it wrong that your portrayal of Jack as spear-wielding-family-protector made me want some naked time with my husband?

    If it is, maybe I should stop commenting. Glad PW is okay!

  • oh, i want the full effect of the chunky goodness!!! ahh! i love the most how he looks like he’s sleeping face down, nose smashed into his little bed.

  • Last winter my husband went to bed without latching or locking our front door. I got up around 3 am to go pee, and thought it felt kinda chilly/drafty in the house. I looked in the living room and saw that our front door had blown open. I didn’t know if anybody was in the house or not, and I was really scared. I went back to our bedroom and woke up my husband. He doesn’t have a spear, but he does keep a pool cue behind his night table. Unlike Jack, my guy was insistent that I come with him to search the house.

    I would pay good money to have been a fly on the wall as we crept around the house, praying that there wasn’t a homicidal maniac hiding in the laundry room!!

    Thankfully, the only thing that got in our house that night was the -15 degree windchill.

  • I’m highly allergic to flea/mosquito/noseeum bites, too. I wish they made an advantage like potion for humans that only had to be applied once a month (plus it must have sunscreen and smell good elements, too).

  • I like a baseball bat in place of the Masai spear. One of those small ones for T-Ball is nice and compact.

    The poor bathrobed man or woman’s nightstick.

  • Perhaps it is because I have had vertigo and have been confined to a couch for a week, but at first I thought that spear was some euphemism for your naked Jack’s…um…organ. It was quite visual. Not that naked, Masai-spear-weilding man is any less a visual.

  • You might want to do a quick inventory and see what Peewee stole, because if ever there were a criminal mastermind, it is Peewee.

  • I love your house, nekkid spear-bearers and snoring bulldogs and all.