The following is one of my favorite stories to tell about my dad. It is an adaptation of a paper I wrote for a college class about 11 years ago. After reading it again for myself, it seems I must have taken some creative liberties in order to gain an ‘A’ on the paper. However, the story is true.
It was an unusually hot and muggy July night. Since my small, upstairs bedroom always felt like a sauna, I was sleeping on the living room floor in the wonderful presence of air conditioning. I was having such a good time enjoying the most wonderful dream, that I never imagined what the night held for me.
Around 2 a.m., I was startled awake by a loud noise. Telling my sister off under my breath for not putting the cat out, I got up and turned on the light. I didn’t see the cat anywhere, but I did discover the source of my early morning annoyance. Mom’s old three-legged cow creamer on top of the six-foot antique secretary was knocked over. I thought to myself, “Well, what’s the problem? It has three legs to stand on, and the cat certainly didn’t get up there.”
It was then when I saw a bird flying back and forth in the living room, wings constantly flapping, slamming into the walls, the ceiling, and light fixtures. Just when I was wondering how in the world a bird got into the house, it flew over my head, almost touching my hair. Then all of a sudden I realized it wasn’t a bird – it was a bat!
I freaked out and threw on my housecoat, ran to the bottom of the stairs and yelled, “Dad! Dad!” No answer. I screamed even louder and with greater panic in my voice, “DAD!! DAD!!” He was obviously dead to the world, so I took the stairs two at a time and knocked on my parents’ bedroom door. Dad groggily answered, “Yeah.”
I replied as calmly as I could, “There’s a bat downstairs!”
“I’ll be there in a minute,” he replied. So I went and waited at the bottom of the stairs. And waited. And waited. While I was waiting on my slow father, the neck-biting critter flew out of the living room and dove right at me!
It seemed like an eternity; but just a few minutes later, Dad finally decided to grace me with his presence – in his underwear! Because he never walked around the house half naked, I thought he was dawdling while putting pants on, but no! He was getting in a few more Z’s before coming to my rescue.
Standing in the hallway, Dad told me to go get the broom. I told him ever so gently, “You’re outta your mind! The broom is in the kitchen and that’s where that ugly thing is!” So he grabbed a tennis racket in the hallway and sauntered to the kitchen while I stayed back, since the vicious monster was after me.
I heard some banging and clanging coming from the kitchen. I was hoping my dad was beating the snot out of the flying rat without destroying mom’s kitchen. The noises finally stopped and it was quiet. When I safely entered the kitchen, I saw dad kneeling on the floor with the bat trapped under the tennis racket. My hero!
He instructed, “Get me something to kill it with.”
“Ya want a paring knife?” I innocently asked.
“No, just get me the broom.” Since it was safe for me to get it now, I stepped over the trapped winged rodent and pulled the broom out of the closet. I told him to wait till I left the room before he killed it. While I think bats are nasty creatures, I didn’t want to witness my dad committing murder in the kitchen with the broom handle while wearing skivvies. After killing the fanged beast, he then proceeded to do whatever was necessary to dispose of the ferocious mammal.
Despite Dad’s assurance that everything was okay, I got little sleep that night because I was haunted with nightmares of being attacked by a wicked vampire.