Saturday, July 16, 2011

Full Moon Fever

So Ye Olde Security Company is treating me like gold lately; giving me exactly what I want: Plenty of night shifts in comfortable quiet places. I'm literally getting paid to do my own writing while in perfect environments - better than home even; air-conditioned and with fewer interruptions - as in - zero interruptions. They probably don't realize that what they're paying me to do, I would otherwise happily do for free! I've actually been receiving overtime paychecks while I feel like I've been on vacation!

But last night I sort of earned my pay for a short while. Here's what happened:

I'm on duty all alone at a big old factory full of big old machines where they manufacture tractor tillage. It's way down by the harbor, nestled between steel plants - far from any housing. Frost fencing and padlocked gates bar the perimeter although there are bottom gaps where meddling teenagers venturing far from home could crawl through if they really wanted to. All the factory doors are locked but everywhere big low screenless windows are open for ventilation. If anyone really wanted to hop in, it would be a breeze. Never do I think anyone would though.

I make my regular call to another manned guard location; standard practice - so they know that I'm okay, alive and awake. My call-in associate tells me he has been watching coloured lights moving in the sky in strange patterns not akin to any human aircraft he's personally aware of. Well, there is a full moon tonight. Ha ha! Spooky!

So I go on patrol; a twenty-minute affair done once every two hours. First I stop in the middle of the plant to throw a Flaming Lips CD on a stereo. I place the CD case on top of a speaker, crank the volume and do my patrol to the sound of the very catchy tune Race For The Prize which repeats four times. Okay, so someone must have left the stereo on repeat mode, right?

I leave very few lights on in the plant. I figure it's my job to protect the client's financial assets and I'm not afraid of the dark. Toward the end of the patrol, the light directly above me suddenly goes on.

What the f-?

I stop, turn and look around. Is someone messing with me? I know for sure there are no motion sensors of any kind here and I've never known any lights here to turn on or off on their own before. I stand still there for a while looking across the gloomy plant, through and between all the big machines, toward all the locations where I know there to be circuit breakers. But why on earth would any guard or employee slip in here at 1:00 AM just to mess with my head? And no intruder would possibly know which switch would activate which light. The light suddenly turns off again and I remain there looking around and thinking about it. I figure there must be a ballast problem or some other defect with the light or what-not and so I carry on.

Patrol complete, I return to the stereo, lower the volume, remove the CD and -- well fuck a duck. The CD case is missing. I know with perfect certainty that I placed it right here on top of the speaker. It's gone. I check the floor. It must have fallen off. It's not on the floor. It's gone.




This is so not cool.

I'm standing there looking around, trying to spot an intruder and trying to figure out what the logical explanation is. Gradually I move toward the far back corner of the plant. I have one hand on the duty cell phone considering whether to call back my UFO-watching friend - or 9-1-1 for that matter. I decline and instead slip out a back door to check the lots. If there's an unauthorized vehicle on site I will call the police. Outside the full moon looks down on me.

Great. A werewolf with a playful sense of humour. This is definitely not in the security procedures manual. I circle the factory. No suspicious cars. The main gate is way too far away for me to see whether it is still locked or even closed or not. A long hike does not appeal while meanwhile my car keys are still inside at my desk - and oh - so is my wallet with $495.00 cash inside. That thought bolsters my courage. I find a nearby unlockable exit and make straight for the office. The wallet, car-keys and cash are present. I pocket them. I think about the speaker on which I placed the CD case.

It was one of three speakers and it was the largest. Okay. So it must be a sub woofer, right? So it would vibrate like a sonofagun, wouldn't it? The case must have vibrated its way off and took a funny bounce and landed somewhere out of sight; like underneath something. So I grab a big big wrench - no not as a weapon but to use to drag the case out from under its presumed hiding place [Editor's note: Yes, as a weapon] and I march back to the stereo.

And of course - a proper search reveals that the CD case is on the floor and in behind some tricky gadgetry that masked it earlier. I shake my head, laugh at myself and go about clawing at the CD case with my weapon - I mean - tool.

"Lose something?"

The voice was inhumanly deep. I scrambled to my feet. He had to be seven feet tall with long fur hanging off of him in every direction. Yellow eyes. Huge teeth. He crouched down. I was literally paralyzed with fear. He reached past me with his enormous arm and pulled the CD case free. "Here you go."

The CD case was covered in grease and something else - something red.

"Is that blood?" I asked.

"No," said the beast. "I've been drinking cosmopolitans. I'm kinda sloppy."

Okay. Sorry. I'm just kidding. There was no werewolf. I dug the case out myself, brought it back to the office, washed the grease off of it and spent the rest of the shift writing the Eye Of Atchooah heroic adventure parody novel, drinking coffee, eating canned beans and farting. But everything else was true and I admit I was spooked for a bit. So there.

Bye now.

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