Friday, October 30, 2009

Freaky Friday: Dolly Dearest

About three years ago,
I bought a new doll.

She had green eyes,
long dark hair,
and her name was Devil.

What started out as
a ten dollar Halloween prop,
Devil Doll has become
the nucleus of our
October festivities.

My daughter Erin and I
have unwittingly created
a strange Halloween tradition.
We take turns playing with
Devil Doll.

And when I say "play",
I mean hiding her somewhere
so that the other person
gets freaked out
when she's unveiled.

These shenanigans go on
for most of October-
starting the minute
our dolly comes down from the attic-
until the minute she's
put back in the Rubbermaid tote
for another year.

I've put Devil in the shower,
the front seat of Erin's car,
under her blankets,
and in her favorite chair.

I've stuffed her in the dryer,
under the bed,
in the car trunk
and inside the cabinets.

I've hidden her in the closet,
and the fridge-
and hung her on the front door
when I knew Erin was getting
ready to leave.

And, I must say,
Erin has come up with some
great hiding places herself.

One night I slept with our doll
without even knowing it.
And then, at midnight,
while fluffing my pillow,
there lay Devil Doll-
all creepy and scary
beneath my head.

That was a good one, Erin.

One morning last year
I scared Erin really good
and she swore she'd get even.
But she left for work
before she could take
possession of little Devil.

All day long I tried to think
of someplace better that
I could hide her.
I sat her on the couch-
her blank eyes staring at me-
her long white fingers
pointing at me in ridicule-
her bloody fangs
ready to taste my flesh...

Then- the electricity went off.
The house went silent and dark.
I heard noises.
And Devil Doll just seemed to smile.

I'm a grown woman, for heaven's sake!
But I grabbed my purse and cell phone
and proceeded to walk quickly
(and I mean sprint)-
to the front porch
where I could see in all directions.
Nothing could get me there.

A few minutes later,
Erin pulled up in the drive
and asked why I was sitting outside
with my purse.

She laughed so hard,
I blushed.
It was the work of Devil Doll,
no doubt-
tired of being used as a
simple toy.

Over the years,
Devil has started to go bald,
lost some of her spring,
and her dress looks
a bit more ragged than usual.

But she's still scary.
And fun.
And part of our yearly tradition.

Sounds corny,
but I know that someday
when I'm old and pass on,
Erin will remember
these days fondly.

She'll smile at the memory
of finding Devil Doll
in the freezer-
wrapped around a box
of Hot Pockets.
Or the time Devil popped out
of a shopping bag
that should have held
only new jeans.

I think Devil Doll
with be part of our
Halloween memories
for a long time.

Where can I hide her today?