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Thursday, October 30, 2003

The Intruder

This is a true story, for your pre-Halloween enjoyment.

Yesterday I was home alone, sitting at the computer in the gathering dusk[*], when I saw something move out of the corner of my eye. Of course, I'm always seeing something move out of the corner of my eye---and it's generally nothing. I'm always seeing things that aren't there.

But this time, something was there. There was a shadow moving against the light behind me. I turned a little, instinctively, wondering what could be making the shadow, when my hair began to stand on end. There was someone looking over my shoulder. I turned to stare right into a pair of monstrous green eyes! What could it be??

It is balloooooon! A couple weeks ago we got a big mylar balloon, a "black" (actually purple) cat with big green eyes and (inexplicably) a pumpkin on its chest. Those mylar balloons stay inflated forever. We stuck it in a corner of the study, wedged its ribbon under a bookcase, and largely forgot about it.

Well, it being the end of October, yesterday it was cool enough to turn off the air conditioning, open the windows, and allow some fresh oxygen molecules into the room. The little breeze blew the balloon from its station by the bookcase. It has about five feet of free ribbon on it, so by the time it reached me it was hovering just above my shoulder. Whatcha readin', Angie? Muahahahahaha!

I wrapped the ribbon around a TV antenna. That ought to hold it. Anyway, today it's back to being hot, and the windows are shut.

If that had happened at night, while Niles was away on a business trip, I'd still be under the desk, shivering.

[*] Actually it was about two in the afternoon, but it makes a better story at dusk, don't you think?