Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Tuesday, September 06, 2011


I rent a room in this two-storey house in QC. It’s a fairly old house, built sometime in either the late 50s or early 60s. It’s the kind of old house that has a lot of knick-knacks and bric-a-brac on both floors. In the room I’m renting alone are several antique religious figures as well as one huge Christ-on-the-cross hanging on the wall. There are only two of us humans in the house, my housemate (and landlord) and I; we occupy two of the three bedrooms upstairs. In the living room are our non-human companions, my landlord’s Shih Tzu named Princess plus her 4 pups (only a few weeks old, the pups stay in a pen near the foot of the wooden stairs).

One night last week I found myself alone in the house with Princess and her puppies. My landlord was confined to the hospital the day before to undergo an appendectomy; he was to stay there for at least 3 more days.

It was already 1:30 in the morning, and I was about to fall asleep when I heard footfalls going up the stairs. Now, a couple of weeks ago we discovered that Princess had figured out how to climb up and down the stairs; we were particularly miffed about this, since she’s not house-trained at the second floor, and one time she left several of her “land mines” on the second floor receiving area. But the footsteps sounded too heavy for a 10-lbs dog; still, I decided I was too sleepy to think about it--or get scared by it.

Then I heard a light thump on my door. It’s a kind of thump that a dog can make when it plops itself down beside the door and hits it. But by that time I had switched off the light and had one foot in dreamland. I didn’t want to get up, open the door and find Princess--or something else--outside my door. So I pushed any thoughts aside and promptly fell asleep.

I woke up around 8 o’clock the next morning because I heard a door open and footsteps going to the bathroom. I lay rigid on the bed, listening intently. I heard the bathroom door close. That’s it, I said to myself, it can’t be the dog. So those noises are either made by ghosts or worse--burglars, perhaps? But what behaved burglars they are! So I texted my landlord: “Is anybody staying in the vacant room?” I was thinking maybe he asked a relative of his to take over while he was in the hospital.

Then I heard them once more, footsteps coming closer, then a door closing.

My cellphone beeped. My landlord’s text message said: “Ay sorry hindi kita nasabihan. May bagong housemates tayo, mag-asawa. Bihira lang sila diyan kasi, mga twice a week lang, because of work.”

True enough, after a few minutes I heard two voices, one female and one male. They were talking as they left their room and walked down the stairs. A few seconds later I heard our gate open and close.


So I got myself ready to go to work. When I was about to leave the front door, the curtain on the window beside the door suddenly fell. I went to check it. Apparently the wooden rod holding up the curtain was slightly too short; I guess it was just waiting to fall. I got a wooden stool, stepped on it and proceeded to try and hang the curtain rod when all of a sudden, the ceiling fan which was just in my line of vision suddenly twirled into action.

I froze, curtain rod held above my head. I first looked at the fan then at its switch located on the wall just in front of me. It was switched “on.” No one could have switched it on without me seeing him. I looked back up at the ceiling fan, then back at the switch, then to Princess at the foot of the wooden stool. She was just looking up at me the whole time.

In my mind I told myself, dogs should sense if there’s something else in the room. She’s not looking in the direction of either the fan or the fan switch. She’s not acting weird at all.

Still, I decided I’d put up the curtains some other time. I picked up my bag and laptop and left for the office.


Will said...

Scary! Reminds me of the movie I watched last night, The Woman in Black. The guy brought a dog with him para malaman kung may mumu.

Ms. Chuniverse said...

Ayyyy! Scary!

Patayin sa Shokot si McVie!!!!

Choz! :)

charles. said...

Creepy. :p

the barefoot baklesa said...

try living in a century old house where while using the wi-fi at the dining room, a lady in a whisp of grey passes through from the chapel at the far end of the comedor... whaaaahhh

Gregg said...

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ram said...

goose bump!!!