So, I got tired of looking at the frayed edges of my DIY gathered end hammock, and figured “What the heck? Might as well pull out the Missus’ sewing machine and give the hammock that rolled hem I was too impatient and lazy to complete.” Or, rather, start. I’ve taken on sewing projects in high school, and have done a rolled hem or two with denim. It’s like riding a bike, right? So, naturally, I had that eager confidence of one who knows the waters, and jumps in head first.
Unlike me, the Missus was unhappy because (a) I was “playing around” with her beloved sewing machine, and (b) she felt that watching me “pretend to sew” was a dull way to spend a Saturday night. So I said, “I have touched several sewing machines, none of which have burst into flames because of the encounter, and since you are planning on taking a shower tonight anyhow, I will have finished my sewing, and be asleep because it will be early Sunday morning by the time you even begin to dry your hair” (the Missus takes notoriously long showers, and the routine afterward (whatever that may be) takes even longer—the longest shower to date: just over three years). Looking back, I suppose I was a bit snide in my response, but I found her lack of faith annoying.
Her response, which I feared would be swift and violent, surprised me—she laughed. Now, my Missus’ laugh is like a chorus of angels. It’s pure like the ringing of crystal, and neighboring birds perch around her just to hear what music in its most unadulterated form should sound like. This was not that laugh. It was a mirthless sound with a hint of foreboding prophecy about it, and as she headed to the back of the house to take what might be a week long shower, she simply said, “Don’t wait up when you finish, Honey.” There was something ironic about her tone. I marked it.
The sewing went poorly right from the start. The polyester liner had a mind of its own, and my “rolled” hem did its best to unroll, and often wouldn’t even allow my expert fingers to roll it in the first place. Things got pinched, pleated, and I’ve seen switchbacks that were straighter than my stitches. Some dark, malicious force was hedging my every step. It wasn’t until I was halfway through my second side and heard the hairdryer start up in the back room that I started to suspect the Missus as the source of this insidious force. When I started the third side and the Missus emerged from the back rooms clean, shaved, and dry of hair to say, “Wow! How many of those things are you making?” there was no doubt left in my mind—somehow she had known all along that this would happen. With what malignant forces she had aligned herself to cause it to be is anybody’s guess.
In the wee hours of Sunday morning, after finishing my crippled hems and quietly preparing for bed (so as not to wake the Missus), I found it difficult to sleep. What was I sleeping next to? Would I survive the night? If I did, what would I wake up to find—my beautiful wife or this dark priestess of prophecy? Would the children be safe? I still don’t have the answers.
So if this should be my last post, remember me, and tell my tale on All Hallows’ Eve as you hang around your campfires—the tale of a man who foolishly tampered with forces beyond his reckoning. Sew let it be written, sew let it be done…