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Friday nights, I sit next to a security monitor at work. Shortly after the sun descends behind the hills, the waning light and odd angles of the cameras makes bugs look like dinosaurs. The usual visitor, a feisty Pterodactyl, shoots across the screen with his wings backlit by streetlights. His buddy, a spiderosaurus, likes to stretch across the lens facing the entrance, protecting all would-be perps from detection.

Of course, we don’t see much action in the retirement village. The most common things stolen are memories. The most violent intruder has been illness. There was a fight once, between two ladies, but I missed it. From what I heard, there was a lot of slapping and feisty name-calling. Of all the days to miss work.

Deep into the night, the camera downstairs plays funny with color. Actually, most color fades to black and white, but anything yellow gets cast with a halo, and periodically, I will see a sheet that doesn’t exist. A few

I fear nothing. They all fear me, wah ha ha!

I fear nothing. They all fear me, wah ha ha!

weeks ago, I saw on camera, a sheet draped across an easel. Later, when checking doors in that area, I noticed someone had removed the sheet. Not. It was still on the video monitor. I know it was a trick of the light, but it didn’t help when I passed by that easel and I heard a CH—CH—CHHHH!

See what writers have to live with? Our imaginations are the driving force behind good stories but they also make the nights come alive with fake sheets that talk.

I’m pretty sure the talking sheet was actually me brushing passed the forest of plastic plants near the easel, but it was   spooky just the same.

When I sit at just the right angle at my desk, I can utilize the odd placement of mirrors and the reflection in my glasses to see people coming from around the corner behind me. That comes in handy at night when it’s dark, and my imagination’s running wild.

It’s usually just a resident checking their mail, or coming to chat after a fight with insomnia.

And sometimes, there are footsteps where there is no form.

Or it’s the air conditioner kicking on again.

Life is better when you can just laugh off the spooks, yes?

Have a happy Monday.

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