Among my friends there are two distinct camps when it comes to this story: those who, like myself, find it hilarious and fun and those, like my BIL, who think Uncle P is being stalked by a serial killer. I'll let you decide.
Last November, just about a month after my mother passed away, I came home to find an Apple box stuffed in my mailbox. When I pulled out the tissue paper and ribbons, I found the nightlight you see to your right. And yes, the bulb inside is red. There was no card or note. Nothing on the box but the Apple logo. When I posted it to Facebook, the two camps immediately made themselves apparent. Of course, my friends and regular readers know my taste for the odd (indeed, the macabre) and unusual. And they also know I tend to have a rather dark sense of humor. I thought it was hilarious and plugged it into a kitchen outlet (it gets too hot for practical use, but is fun to switch on when I have guests). In the months that followed, people would occasionally ask me if I ever found out who sent it, but I almost forgot about. Until...
Just around my birthday this year, I came home and opened my screen door and a box tumbled out onto the mat. Inside was not only the green planter below, but a note!
"The psychic creepy doll network has determined you and your red eyed nightlight needed a friend.
"Therefore please welcome this new addition to your home. We trust you will admire and enjoy it.
"With much love, a shared sense of humor and best wishes,
"Your mystery/anonymous creepy peeps."
The box was a sturdy gift box from the Frenchtown Metalworks, an art jeweler in New Jersey.
How exciting! Contact had been made! But how much was to be believed? Is this the work of more than one person? Do they live in or near Frenchtown? He, she or they obviously know where I live and when they can deliver packages when I'm not home. More friends freak out. I laugh and hope that all will be revealed, eventually. Speculation continues.
Next - right before Halloween, I came home to find a bag on my kitchen table. My boarder had brought it in (whew!) after finding it hanging on the doorknob, outside. In the bag was a square box, also from Frenchtown Metalworks. It had a black ribbon and written on it in orange and black markers was "Happy Halloween!" And in the box was the delightfully odd electric tealight holder you see below.
Cozy, isn't she? The yellow flickering eyes in the very pink head are far more effective than the red bulb in the nightlight, don;t you think? No note this time but I didn't need one.
Most recently, I came home from picking up my Christmas Eve dinner from Wing Wah, to find a USPS Priority Mail package sitting in my carport. My sister's package had already arrived, as well as a package from friends who couldn't wait to see me to give me my gift. I looked for the sender only to see "Santa" with no return address. I knew immediately who it was from.
I ate my dinner, opened the rest of my mail and then set to the package. Inside was a letter and the most elaborate dolly of all. Wrapped in a blankie and painted yellow all over; her hair cut off and phrases, slogans and bits of poetry written all over her, she is quite magnificent!
The letter reads:
"ho ho ho Brian!
"I fear you've not been naughty enough this year so was tempted to not deliver this wee child to you for the holidays.
"Alas your creepy peeps network has informed me that exists (sic) in you a certain scorn for the Christmas merriment... the stories behind the story as it were.
"That has set you in my good graces and so I bestow upon you your very own baby - one of poetry for your reading pleasure as you sit by the fire.
"So master yourself an icy cold martini, sit back and enjoy the season.
"All my best,
" Santa, the creepy one
"PS... my supply of treats for you has run low... but I have my sources and so perhaps we shall continue this adventure into yet another year"
The font colors are theirs. So they also know that I am an atheist and enjoy an icy cold Sapphire martini now and again. The plot thickens. Or does it? Loads of folks know that. The doll itself, is fascinating. She reminds me of something out of a Clive Barker movie.
On her face is: LETS DO EMPTY OUR POCKETS AND DISAPPEAR * MISSING ALL OUR APPOINTMENTS AND TURN ING UP YEARS LATER UNSHAVEN OLD CIGARETTE PAPERS STUCK TO OUR PANTS LEAVES IN *** OUR HAIR Her torso reads: LET US NOT WORRY ABOUT THE PAYMENTS ANYMORE LET THEM COME ND TAKE IT AWAY WHATEVER IT WAS WE WERE PAYING AND US WITH IT On her left arm and side: I AM A SOCIAL CLIMBER CLIMBING DOWNWARD AND THE DESCENT IS DIFFICULT On her right arm: THE UPPER MIDDLE CLASS IDEAL IS FOR THE BIRDS AND THE BIRDS HAVE NO USE FOR IT
On her left leg: LETS CUT IT OUT LETS GO TO THE REAL INTERIOR OF THE COUNTRY WHERE HOCKSHOPS REIGN MERE UNBLIND ANARCHY UPON US THE END IS NEAR BUT GOLF GOES ON. On her right leg: LET US ARISE AND GO NOW TO WHERE DOGS DO IT OVER THE HILL * WHERE THEY KEEP THE EARTHQUAKES BEHIND CITY DUMPS LOST AMONG GAS MAINS AND GARBAGE. On top of her head: JUNKMAN'S OBBLIGATO On the back of her head: LAWRENCE FERLING HETTI (the artist, perhaps?) MY BODY IS HUNG UP TOO LONG IN THE STRANGE SUSPENDERS GET ME A BRIGHT BANDANA FOR A OCKSTRAP (sic) On her back: LET US NOW YOU AND I LEAVING OUR NECKTIES BEHIND ON LAMPOSTS (sic) TAKE UP THE FULL BEARD OF WALKING ANARCHY LOOKING LIKE WALT WHITMAN A HOME MADE BOMB IN THE POCKET I WISH TO OESCEN (?) IN THE SOCIA (?) IS LOW On the back of her right arm: LOSE THE WAR WITHOUT KILLING ANYONE
So, Uncle P's question for you... Would you be freaked out, or just as amazed and amused as I am? That a friend or friends would go this far and long without cracking is just awesome. I know there will be a grand reveal, eventually and I will be face-palming myself for not figuring it out. Until them, I very much love this game!