Friday, March 25, 2011

60 Second Stories By Kal - Dark Shadows

I have told this story before but when I saw this picture on Tumblr I had to tell it again.

When I was a kid (around 7) I would spend summer time at our family farm. It was located between the small towns of Vita and Sundown Manitoba. These were very small towns. One grocery store, one pub (that were owned by people that made the best Chinese food) and a population of about 100 people. This was RURAL Manitoba. Everyday we would drive to the store in either small town. It was an event for me.

In those days I was crazy about bubble gum cards - just for the bubble gum and how great the cards smelled for days afterwards. I didn't really buy just one kind of card either. My little binder had baseball and hockey cards and cards from TV shows and movies. I was even into variety back then.

On this particular day I picked up a pack of cards from the show 'Dark Shadows'. If you don't know the show, it was a soap opera in the late 60s with a vampire as the main character. His name was Barnabas Collins. The show had monsters in it but all of that was mixed in with goofy soap opera themes and stories.

When I opened the pack there were not only cards but a fold out poster of the vampire hero. I liked it and when I got home I immediately taped it to my wall in my bedroom next to all my other pictures.

That night I was awaken by muffled voices. I looked towards the voices and all I could see in the dark was that Barnabas Collins poster, illuminated by a light. I think I pooped my pants. I didn't realize that both the light and the voices were coming from the basement through an open heating vent to my room until many days later. It seemed I had taped the poster in the exact place where the light shone onto the wall from below.

In my half asleep state I really believed that the poster was talking to me. What was most frustrating was that I couldn't tell if it was good conversation or bad conversation. Either he was telling me to go back to sleep and everything was okay or he was telling me that when I fell back asleep that he would rip my neck apart and feast on my gooey innards.

Regardless, I was not taking any chances. I opened my first floor window and was in the back yard quicker than shit through a goose. I suppose I should have realized that there were more things that could have killed me OUTSIDE than could have hurt me INSIDE but at the time I was not in any condition to logically work out the situation in my head. I wrapped my blanket around me and crawled under the picnic table and that is where my parents found me the next morning.

The next night it was more of the same with the evil poster being unclear about what it wanted me to do. I remember thinking that if it wanted me to kill someone I was cool with that but please stop with all the mumbling. It was annoying.

I am sure it would have been a horror filled summer if not for my father coming in to check that I had not flown out the window again. Noticing the poster and putting two and two together he moved it a few feet from where it was taped and suddenly the nightmare was over. I still heard the voices but by then I had moved my bed closer to the vent so that I could make out the TV and the conversations more clearly.

There were several other nights when I slept under the picnic table but those were times of my own choosing. No vampire chased me out of my room ever again.


Wings1295 said...

Why is there no Adventures of Lil Calvin book out there???

Kal said...

Now THAT is a question I want an answer to. That little kid had all kinds of awesome adventures.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

I absolutely LOVED Dark Shadows but via the books (novelizations) of the TV show. We didn't actually get the TV show on our one channel -- remember CKX TV? I bet you do!

Kal said...

I do. I was the alternative to CBC and CTV in the days when we had only 13 channels if we were lucky. Good times. Sometimes choice is such a bother.

Paladin said...

Dark Shadows was genius on a low budget. Everything was so dramatic and kinda campy all at the same time. I used to giggle a little when the characters were being all serious and then the boom operator would dip the microphone into the camera shot accidentally... Good Times :)

Urban Jointz said...

Great story! Definitely needs to be illustrated!!

Kal said...

But but, it's nudity free.

Kal said...

I wish I had the skill to draw my tales.

Contemplating Cadie said...

GREAT STORY! I'm so glad you linked it up, and your comment, "But but, it's nudity free" totally backs up the comment I left you in my comment section. LOL

Man, I have so many memories like this. It taught me to always turn on the light when my kids are upset about something they are seeing, and then rearrange whatever is causing the problem. Now my eleven year old does it for himself. Logically you know that it's not a head stuck on your bedpost, but it still looks like one!

You had a wise daddy. I know you miss him.

I can't believe you slept under the picnic table! Brave? Stupid? Toss up.

Kal said...

I was neither brave nor stupid. Just tired. I was a cub scout. We loved to sleep under anything.

Keetha Broyles said...

Coming by from the No Rules Linky party.

I remember Dark Shadows - - - I was in Jr. High and High School at the time. I didn't watch it myself, but it was ALL THE RAGE with girls my age, mostly because they thought Barnabas was hot.

Funny story about the light/sound coming up the heat vent.

Kal said...

Thanks for the visit Keetha.Dark Shadows really was the 'Twilight' of it's day. All those kids think they reinvented vampires and werewolves. Silly kids.