The phone rings.
I realize I am laying crosswise on the bed, the DVD of King Kong still flashes brightly and booms on the big screen TV in our bedroom.
I fell asleep while watching it but don't remember even closing my eyes.
I pick up.
The Husband is away on a business trip and is calling to say Goodnight.
I am sleepy and disoriented and it takes me a moment to remember that He is not here. Not calling to tell me he is on his way home from a late night at work.
I suddenly become aware of another Noise in the house.
It's coming from outside the bedroom. In the livingroom.
It is loud enugh to be heard over the booming stereo sound of the TV.
It's the sound of glass windows rattling in their wooden frames.
Someone is banging on our front door.
I head out of the bedroom and peer around the corner into the living room to see a Man.
There's a Man on our front porch banging on our door.
He is bald. With an earring. He looks like Mr. Clean. Only shorter. A mini-Mr. Clean.
He has the storm door open and is standing between it and the front door.
I am frozen in terror.
My heart starts to pound with the realization that I am alone. The Husband is hundreds of miles away and I am alone in the house with three children.
I stand in the dark in silence.
Are you dreaming?
My husband doesn't know what else to ask.
No, hon there is a fucking Man standing on our front porch and He is banging on the door. I am alone in the house with our three children.
I scream at him in a whisper because I don't want this Stranger to hear me.
I then become aware of the TV still blaring in the bedroom. If I turn it off, He will know someone is Home and awake. Our bedroom window faces the street and is directly next to the front door.
I don't move.
Who is He?
How the hell am I supposed to know?
My heart is racing. I start to shake.
Just then he walks away. Moments later I hear the sounds of a large vehicle driving up the block. I catch a glimpse of the lights of a large truck, a flatbed, as it drives slowly passed the livingroom windows.
We determine that Mr. Clean must be associated with the phone calls we've been getting for the past several weeks. Husband has missed a couple of payments and is close to defaulting on his car loan. Yes, the Costs of Custody are far reaching.
I hang up with The Husband and find myself checking to make sure all of the windows are locked. I close the blinds in the livingroom, lock the screen door, turn off the porch light, and sit in the livingroom in darkness trying to process and recover from what just happened.
It's a good hour before I am able to get to sleep.
**Fast forward, one week later. **
Every night since the visit from Mr. Clean I have been following the same routine.
Front & Storm doors? Locked.
Livingroom Lights? Off.
TV? On, but volume turned so low I have to read lips.
It's now midnight and I am nursing The Mouse in our bedroom.
Again The Husband is not Home.
From down the block I hear the sounds of a large flatbed truck drive up in front of our house.
My heart starts to race. Mr. Clean has returned.
I sit in bed, my 5 month old infant alseep on my breast.
The truck door opens.
The truck door closes.
Footsteps in the driveway.
Heading up the front steps. They are heavy and purposeful.
They reach the front door.
DINGDONG! DINGDONG! DINGDONG!
What happened next is a bit of a blur but goes something like this:
- Get up from bed and gently lay The Mouse down in one graceful movement so as not to wake her.
- Storm out of the bedroom teeth clenched and head to the front door.
- Totally spaz and miss the front door knob because the SEETHING ANGER apparently hinders gross motor skills.
- Successfully manage to grab the doorknob on Attempt #2, swing open the door, shove the storm door open and unleash the following verbal bitch slap to the Chucklehead now staring at me all wide eyed like a deer caught in the headlights.
It's not illegal. He dares to speak.
EVER HEAR OF BREACH OF THE PEACE? THAT IS ILLEGAL. SO DON'T DO IT.
GET OFF MY PROPERTY.
I close the front door and walk towards to the kitchen to call 9-1-1.
Mr. Clean stands on the front porch yelling at me through closed doors and bangs on the door a couple of more times for good measure.
The police are painfully slow. I should have remembered.
By the time the officer was finished getting my information -- do you reside at...? do you know who this person is? have you ever seen him before? ok, so you say you are alone in the house with three children? and oh, are you in a safe place? -- Mr. Clean leaves.
Nevermind officer, he's gone.
So... Do you still want us to send someone out?
Well, no there's no point now. He's gone fuckyouverymuch.
The next night, I disconnected the doorbell and sat in my livingroom in the dark until midnight.
Waiting for his next visit.
Yes, I know the Repo-Man.
I wish he'd go away.
Tuesday, May 9, 2006
Do You Know the Repo-Man?
Do you know the Repo-Man?
Yes, I know the Repo-Man,
And this is how we met.