Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



All of My Friends

Monday, November 7, 2016

Getting to the Heart(beat) of the Matter

Let me know if this scares you!

Maybe it wouldn’t have been quite so bad if I hadn’t just finished reading Edgar Allen Poe’s “Telltale Heart”.

Maybe . . .
It had been a busy day.
Busy.
Our children, and our children’s children, had just left. With six originals, plus spouses and offspring, that comes to . . . quite a number.
I had collapsed into the couch for some well-deserved R & R.
After the noise from so many bodies, the silence was almost thick around me.
I laid my head back. “Ahhhhh!” I relaxed there for a few moments.
Hmmm.
Funny.
I could hear the sound of my heart beating.
I smiled.
Then frowned.
Wait. I put one hand to my chest. That couldn’t be my heart. It was a different rhythm.
I sat up and looked around. The sound was gone.
Weird.
I got up and listened. Made a circuit of the room.
Nothing.
I must have imagined it. I relaxed back on the couch again. Laid my head back.
There it was!
The steady ca- thump, ca-thump of a heart.
Coming from . . . inside the couch.
My couch was haunted!
I leaped to my feet and went in search of my Husby. He would be able to tell me that I was just imagining things. And that my furniture hadn’t really taken on a life of its own.
“Sit down, honey,” I directed. “No. Right here.”
He sat down, eyeing me doubtfully.
“Now lean your head back.”
He did so, still keeping his eyes on me. Then, those eyes widened. He sat up and looked at the couch.
“You hear it, too?” I asked.
He nodded, still staring at the couch. He leaned over again, putting one ear against the fabric. “Huh,” he said. “I hear a heartbeat.”
“Is it a sign or something?” I asked.
Okay, I know what you’re thinking. What on earth would a couch with a heartbeat be a sign of?
Humour me . . .
He shook his head. “There must be some explanation.”
“Well, you have to admit that it’s not every day you have furniture that develops . . . bodily functions,” I told him.
We took turns sitting on the couch and pressing our ears against the back. Each time, we heard the steady thumping of a heart.
Stranger and stranger.
Our front door opened and we both jumped. It was our second son, returning to pick up something his family had forgotten.
“Erik! Come in here!” We directed him to the couch. “Sit here!” We pushed him down. “Now put your head against the back.”
He did so, thinking all the while that both of his parents had suddenly taken the last bend in the road before reaching the loonie bin. Then he frowned. “It that . . .?” He turned his head and pressed his ear against the couch then looked up at us. “It’s a heartbeat.”
“I know!” we said together. “Our couch has a heartbeat!”
He frowned and put his head down once more. “Yup. Definitely a heartbeat.”
He got up and started probing the cushions.
“Erik, what are you doing?” I suddenly had visions of him coming up with a bloody, beating heart grasped in one hand.
“Ah!” he said, pulling his hand out. He was clutching a soft, furry little lamb. With cute little ears and a tiny little stub of a tail.
“I think this is your problem,” he said.
He put the lamb against my ear.
Ca-thump! Ca-thump!
“Oh!” I said. I took the lamb from him. “Ummm . . . why does it have a heartbeat?” I asked stupidly.
I’m sure the rest of you have heard of these things, but I swear I had not . . .
“It’s supposed to be soothing to a new baby,” Erik said.
“Oh.”
“Yeah. You put it in the cradle. The baby’s used to the sound of a heartbeat. It soothes them.”
“Huh.”
He took it back and flipped a switch. The beating sound stopped.
He laughed at the two of us staring down at the little lamb. Then he left.
Case of the Possessed Couch solved.

17 comments:

  1. That would have scared the life out of me. I wouldn't have been around to see what the answer was, I'd have been running away from that haunted couch so fast you would have seen my dust!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah. I was only brave because Husby was right there. By myself? Yikes!

      Delete
  2. Yeah, that would have scared me

    ReplyDelete
  3. Diane I knew because I was victim of not a beating lamb but a beating monkey! I ungraciously cursed, so many damn toys and reached in and found the offending beast. Here is the mystery we both have, mine unsolved, no one is admitting, how did it get out of the crib?

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hahaha! I would have been scared too!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hmmm ... when I was a kid, the only thing a stuffed toy could do was play "Braham's Lullaby" ... much less scary!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah. I don't think I'd have been as terrified if my couch suddenly started playing music. Hmmm . . . or maybe not . . .

      Delete
  6. If the furniture has to develop bodily functions a heart beat is not the worst. By a long shot.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bwahahahaha! You definitely have a point! I can picture toilet training a couch!

      Delete
  7. I've heard people buy these things for new puppies as well, to soothe them to sleep in those first few weeks in a new home away from their mum and siblings.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As long as it stays in the puppy's bed, we're all good.

      Delete
  8. that was so cute - I would have loved to see the look on your face when it was all happening!

    ReplyDelete

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