It started out innocently enough, just two buddies on a bike ride, but it would end years later with the loss of an old friend. Along the way there was laughter and there were tears, there was heart stopping horror as well as a good deal of “take that you peckerhead!”. Ok, so I’ve been reading Visible Wear again, but don’t you sometimes just want to write more than “I farted again” or “doesn’t my dog look cute”?
Meanwhile back at the story…. ET and I were riding around SJ on our bikes looking at houses (10 speeds not motorbikes, I used to do that a lot of that before I got so fat my butt overhang started getting caught in the chain). SJ is great for bike riding because the city itself is very flat, and there’s a million different types of houses to look at.
We were just coasting, no need for a sweat here, when I spotted something on the road. It was small and pink, and when I rode over to get a closer look I saw it was some kind of flexible plastic doll about 8 inches tall. It looked like a little baby but it wasn’t, I found out much later that it was an action figure of one of those little guys who came out of the spaceship in Close Encounters of the Third Kind. But as I had never seen the film I didn’t recognize it.
ET hadn’t seen Close Encounters either (and yes I get the irony), but for some strange reason he gave a noticeable shudder when he looked at it, no kidding! This thing really freaked him out, it did for years! So after my initial glee at weirding him out, I just put it in my backpack and we continued our ride.
Later that night I snuck into his and Peg’s room and hid it under his pillow. The next morning at breakfast he was none too pleased with me, I mean this thing really bothered him. The next night, I got up around midnight to get a snack (I always do, it’s a standing joke), and when I opened the fridge door, there he was sitting on the top shelf waiting for me.
Things just got rapidly worse form there, I put him in the Cornflakes, ET put him in my lunch box , I stuck him in a pair of ET’s socks in his sock draw, ET actually froze him into some ice-cream (don’t worry, he was given a good wash before any of this happened, well at least before the ice cream). You can see where I’m going with this, so I won’t belabor the point other than to emphasize that there were some really creative ideas.
Even after I returned to Oz, the weird little guy used to travel back and forth across the ocean courtesy of both the US Postal Service and Australia Post. Only now he took to getting dressed up in old Barbie outfits. This went on for years until finally some kid that ET knew wanted to join the fun, so we sent it to him and we never saw the little space guy again. But it was fun while it lasted.
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