I’m downstairs in our guest room working, minding my own business, when I hear what sounds like a licking or chewing coming from the closet next to me. The closet has a pair of sliding doors anchored only at the top so they swing freely.
“That’s odd,” I think.
I turn off my movie to listen more carefully and triangulate the sound and, indeed, it’s some weird organic sound coming from the closet.
Luckily I got married, so I have a bee-banisher/mouse-musterer/rodent-ridder living in my house and I IM Seth:
“Come downstairs please. And bring a flashlight.”
He comes down and listens, and he hears it too. He suggests I step into the hallway just in case it’s something horrible like bees chewing on the wood (ever since a friend told me about hearing that in a house he was in, I’ve had that fear at the back of my mind.) He takes the flashlight, pushes the door aside, and then steps back, alarmed.
“What is it?” I ask.
“I don’t know,” he says, worried. “Don’t come closer though. Let’s both just back up quietly.”
I pointed out that Kulha, one of our cats, was lying on the bed and we couldn’t just shut the room with him in it. Seth tells me to step back out and he’ll try to get the cat out.
“I saw huge whiskers,” he says. “I don’t know what it is, but it’s big.”
I start to sort of freak out at this point and am debating going past the closet to pick up the cat. He suggests I just stay out, and picks up a long dowel and starts poking at the cat.
Now, you have to understand, our cat is terrified of things like Carrying a Small Towel Within Ten Feet of Where He is Lying, or Moving Around in an Overly Aggressive and Noisy Manner, or other sins of that ilk. Pretty much anything unusual beyond moving quietly and calmly will lead to his eyes getting big and him getting up and leaving.
Apparently, however, this does not extend to dowels. In his universe long, six-foot dowels are perfectly okay, and a normal part of life, even when they’re moving through the air and gently poking you in an encouraging ‘get off the bed’ manner.
Mid-poke, my husband suddenly pauses and says, “Hang on, where’s the other cat?”
I go upstairs and start calling his name, rattling a treat bag. And who should pop his head out from behind the supposedly-scary closet door but the other cat.
We felt very foolish, and simultaneously very grateful that the cat had no idea how much he’d freaked us out because he’d probably do it again just for the entertainment value.
That seems pretty scary to me!
Of course, in reality, this is what was hiding in the closet. But what’s a bit of reality distortion between friends?