It was a quiet evening. For a summer night it was relatively cool, with a fresh breeze blowing in across the desk, tickling my fingers as I type and otherwise go about my business. I was watchingEdward Scissorhands and wondered why it’s always the sensitive guy with a good heart that has to suffer the inequities of the world, namely in the realm of romance. I found myself wanting a Winona Ryder of my own. I hadn’t ever noticed the beauty in Ms. Ryder’s expressive eyes. No, it’s not because I was too busy staring at her cleavage in Sex and Death 101. I must say that though Sex and Death 101 had a novel story with decent writing, somehow it just didn’t feel like it lived up to it’s potential. I felt that there could’ve been a much more dramatic payoff.
Anyway, this isn’t a review of either movie. I had imbibed a large quantity of tea over the course of the afternoon through the evening, and it was time to refill the pot. So I left my room. I placed the pot of tea on the table and proceeded to the kitchen to refill the kettle with water. It took a long eleven seconds with the painstakingly low throughput. I took the wobbling kettle in my hand and placed it onto the stove. Turning the knob to “light”, I was surprised that the starter was not igniting. It usually happens when there is an unusually high load on the electrical system in the building, but it was normally experienced only on a hot day when many people turn on their air conditioners. However, today is a relatively cool day: the Vista weather widget says it’s only 77 degrees.I reached into the drawer next to the stove. My hand emerged with a large box of matches. I slid open the cardboard box and selected one at random. After closing the box, I struck the red head of the match against the rough side panel of the match box and was unexpectedly rewarded with the successful ignition of the match upon the first attempt. With the match lit, I held it right by the burner assembly and turned the knob to light. Two clicks later and my kettle of water was well on its way to shrieking. I ran some water over the match to extinguish it before I flipped it into the trash bin.I returned to my room and plopped back down in my very comfortable chair, raising my legs to rest on my subwoofer (which had caused me a large gash in my lower back earlier). Watching Mr. Scissorhands plungehisunwilling weapon into that bastard’s stomach was a satisfying moment. As the end credits started to roll, I closed my media player and felt the need to use the bathroom. No, it’s not because I needed some relief from watching Ms. Ryder.
Anyway, I heard the kettle’s unique rumbling and rustling of water, a preemptive signal of it’s impending shrieking boil. However, I decided it could wait until later. I took a book into the bathroom with me. When I was done with my business, I went back to the room and wondered to myself, “Shouldn’t the water be done boiling by now?” I went to check on it. And I discovered something shocking.
The stove knob was turned to the off position.
I thought I was going crazy. I didn’t know why the hell the knob was in the off position. I checked the trash bin for the match. Indeed it’s red head was now black. It was most certainly burnt and extinguished. I touched the kettle, and it was most certainly hot. Sometimes the water boils over the kettle’s mouth and the resulting water spillage extinguishes the flame, leaving the gas on without burning. That did not happen.
I couldn’t for the life of me remember that I went back into the kitchen to turn the damn stove off. I was confused as hell. I started thinking of all of the possibilities. I concluded that there were only three of them: I was either going crazy, developing superpowers, or there was a helpful ghost in my home.
After much debate and pondering, I had to accept the reality of the situation. Through the process of elimination and deductive reasoning, I came to accept that I had gone to the kitchen to turn off the stove after hearing the rustling of the water. And because of that, I must also accept the fact that I must be going slightly insane.
It’s not one of those cases of, “Oh man, I didn’t even know I turned off the alarm clock!” I was not sleep deprived. I was fully conscious. I was entirely cognizant of my environment. Yet I have absolutely no recollection of every turning off the stove. It’s as if it never happened. There was no blacking out, no “lost time”. In my mind, I had never turned that knob back to the off position.
I’d like to think that I have the power of telekinesis, that I turned off the stove just by thinking about it. The idea of a ghost creeps me out. But in all likelihood, I’ve just lost my mind.