It was 4:00 in the morning, and I'd been half-awake already for whatever reason.
...did I just...did I just hear my name? I waited a second. Nothing. Maybe a cat moaned in a way that sounded like "June." As they do.
"Grrrrrrr," growled Edsel, quietly. His lifted his head from where it has been on my hip. My heart started to pound. Why is everything scarier in the middle of the night? You get diarrhea during the day, it's an inconvenience. You wake up with it, you feel all panicky. Which is what I was feeling then. It was a man's voice, sounded like an older white guy, no one I recognized.
I'd been plugging my phone into the computer at night and using my regular, old-fashioned alarm clock instead, but last night I just happened to bring my phone with me; it was right next to the bed. Should I call 9-1-1? Instead I crept out of bed like I was miming, and I really need to get over that line, minced to the doors and made sure they were locked. Then I decided to look carefully out the window.
I have 97 pair of glasses and I could not find one goddamn pair. Every pair I picked up in the dark were reading glasses, and any time I need reading glasses I can only find real glasses. Finally, yes! There were some real glasses.
First I tried to look through the peephole, and has that ever served you even once? That thing is useless. So then I mince mince minced to the window.
Was he saying June or Jude? And for everyone in the know, he was using my real name, and I'm changing all these stupid names to fit this blog. Is there even one person left out there who does not know my real name at this point? I am a mystery. I am Mona Lisa.
See. I was trying to look mysterious, but instead I look fairly deranged. Also, now that you've seen my picture, you know that I lived through this story and I just took all the tension out of it.
So there I was, at the window, peering through it so teensily, lifting the blind so subtly, that right then I knew. I'd turned into my other grandmother. She used to listen to the police radio, and then if anything was happening nearby, she'd race arthritically to the window and peer around the curtain, as if it were going to be happening right outside her living room.
Anyway, I saw nothing, but Edsel kept going with his low grrrr, so I knew the idiot was still out there. I couldn't tell, as quiet as it was outside, if he was in my yard or across the street. Then I heard a loud boom.
Oh my god. Was that a gunshot?
I called the police. I turned into my old neighbor Alicia (once I was done turning into Gramma). I called the police on his ass.
How often have you called 9-1-1 in your life? Because I feel like I call them inordinate amounts of time. "(Hey, June. 9-1-1. How's Steely Dan?")
I told them the sitch, and as I was telling it I heard that idiot guy again, and this time he was clearly not saying my name. And since he was still out there, I assumed he hadn't shot anyone. I had, however, looked at my phone when I heard the loud noise, in case the police needed to know right when it happened. Once, Nora Ephron was in her kitchen, and she heard a scream, and looked at the clock just in case, and it turns out it WAS a murder, and she was able to say, "I heard it at 1:37 p.m."
I was lying there actually trying to make myself go back to sleep when I heard a small dog yap-yap-yapping. I went back to my Gramma's School of Peering, and lifted one iota of the blind, and there were the police, talking to a man with a tiny dog. The police eventually drove off and the man walked away.
My theory is it was Buffalo Bill with Precious, which is only funny if you're obsessed with Silence of the Lambs as I am. Really, we should have a whole June Movie Film Festival, where we all rent my favorite films and come back to discuss them after. Oh my god I love that idea.
When Harry Met Sally
Silence of the Lambs
It's a Wonderful Life
And as a bonus, Say Anything
The point is, I have no idea why that idiot was shouting outside my neighbor's house, and I guess I never will. But it was a delightful way to be awake from 4:00 till 5:00 today.
June! Judy! Jude!