My son’s current favorite toy is a stuffed dog. A stuffed dog that talks. And sings. And lights up. And requests in a bit too perky of a voice that you hug it. A lot. Like, a lot a lot.
And I’m pretty sure it’s trying to kill me.
Oh sure, maybe you could chalk up my paranoia to watching one too many demented child’s toy-themed horror movies or too many late nights falling asleep to “The Twilight Zone” reruns (yes, I’m old, shut up). But the evidence is mounting.
And I’m pretty sure it’s only a matter of time now.
It started out innocently enough. Riker would be playing with Creepy Dog (as I’ve taken to calling it) and when he was done, I’d push the button on its foot that turned it off. Three minutes later, there was Creepy Dog, sitting beside us on the couch, perkily telling us “IT’S LEARNING TIME!” and then requesting that we hug it.
It must have accidentally turned on when I adjusted my legs on the couch, I pathetically told myself.
Things were fine for awhile (like they are in every single horror movie I’ve ever seen). And then Creepy Dog turned on by itself again. Only this time, no one had been playing with it for hours and it was lying (creepily) by itself on the coffee table. “I love you!” it said. “Can you and I be friends?” it said. And then it firmly told us that we should hug it.
OK, OK, sure. Maybe those two incidences can be explained by faulty manufacturing or science or whatever. But before you cart me off to the looney bin, just read what happened next.
A few days later, I was in the bedroom, rocking my baby to sleep. He had just drifted off when suddenly I hear “IT’S LEARNING TIME!” followed by a stupid song about colors, followed by “I love you!” followed by another stupid song about shapes or some junk, followed by a DEMAND that we hug it. And worst of all…
…it was coming from INSIDE THE HOUSE!
Well, obviously. But more importantly, it was coming from inside the living room.
And we were in the bedroom. Me. The baby. The dog. All piled on the bed together. Even that goddamn fly that has been living in our house the past five months that I can never seem to squish was chilling on the bedroom wall.
And if none of that is enough to convince you, the above Creepy Dog monologue/karaoke show was followed by the phrase “PEEKABOO! I SEE YOU!”, repeated no less than seven times in a row.
I craned my head around the bedroom door and damn if I didn’t see Creepy Dog staring right back at me, sitting up (creepily) on a chair in the living room. A chair I don’t remember leaving him in.
Granted, my memory isn’t the most reliable these days (I lost my house keys for eight months and found them two weeks ago in, get this, my purse…I may also leave a disproportionate amount of Riker toys in the fridge and leftover chili in the toy basket, but whatever). Still, there’s a good 14 percent chance I did not leave Creepy Dog in that chair (now if I found him in the fridge, that would be a different story).
Anyway, the moral of the story is that if I’m ever murdered, Creepy Dog did it.