Sunday, January 14, 2007

Ode to Clucky

The sound of one thing in particular has always reminded me of home, our home, here in the 'shwa. Surely there are sounds I associate with my parents' home, like the sound of rain hitting the sunroom windows in a storm, or the yahoos across the street living with their parents into their late twenties, playing with their souped up honda civics or screaming obscenities at their parents. There are sounds I associate with work, like my heels as I run between courts, cells, and the crown's office. But one sound makes me smile, occasionally wince, and occasionally laugh and always reminds me of home, our home.

After a long day at work, in the middle of the night, it echoes through the hall, or in the bedroom. It often catches me by surprise, but has been a source of entertainment to be sure.

Now, it's suddenly gone silent. I'm of course thinking of Clucky, our rubber chicken dog toy.

Somehow, the squeaker has finally met its match after more than two years of use. To be fair, it's been two years of heavy use - two dogs chewing on it and openly playing tug of war over it, and both Dave and I stepping on it.

The worst interactions I've had with Clucky (so named because it rhymes with...) is the unexpected one, the one where you getting up in the middle of the night, sneak out of bed slowly to not wake up your partner, tiptoe across the floor, squinting to make sure you aren't stepping on any one of the four animals and, when you finally think you're in the clear, slinking quickly into the bathroom, only to step on laundry, that suddenly emits this loud SQUEEEEAAAAAAKKKKKKKK that pierces the silence. The wheeze that follows sounds like Clucky's laughing at you.

The sound itself is enough to cause heart attacks, if not for the person who stepped on Clucky, then for the partner who, until that moment, had been quietly sleeping in bed.

And so, a new, mute phase of Clucky's life has begun. The dogs seem less interested in Clucky then before, there seems to be less "hey that's mine" or "give it back" going on than there was before, no one is vying for sole chewing rights on Clucky. Instead of its vigorous squeak-wheeze-squeak, it's been straight wheezing when the dogs play with Clucky.

It looks like life is going to get a bit more peaceful in the house - for both the chicken, and us.


mamatulip said...

Kinda sounds like life with kids, when you're tip-toeing around trying not to wake up the baby you just got to sleep and you end up stepping on Turbo Tail Tigger and waking the entire household up.

Jay said...

Well, sounds like he had a good reign. I prefer my chickens quiet also...and usually grilled, or is that just me?

Izzy said...

Awww..we have a de-squeaked dog toy, as well. It's now older than our dearly departed pup. But it reminds us of her so Yellow Lion retains a place of honor on Husband's desk. I know it's a little weird but we can't bear to throw it out.

kittenpie said...

Well, clucky may have bought the farm, but it sounds like you'll be the ones who rest in peace! Heh heh. I slay myself.

Sandra said...

Oh dear clucky. May he rest in peace ... or as kittenpie said ... looks like you'll finally get too :)

Teena said...

We have a ton of toys in our place. Morgan is the only one who place with them. He had some balls with bells that have ... um .. disappeared. Hearing him banging them in the bathroom at 3:00am did not make me happy.

wordgirl said...

I was going to say that the sounds of bluejays reminds me of eating breakfast in my grandmother's living room and hearing the birds outside in the backyard. But reading about Clucky is so much more interesting.

Heather said...

mamatulip: I think the stakes are a lot less higher here - we can completely ignore the fact the whole household woke up as a result of clucky, and I'm guessing such luxuries are gone when kids are around.

jay: He did have a good reign - 10 bucks for a dog toy that lasts 2 years for 2 dogs is pretty good, really.

izzy: I'm the person who almost cried when I came home to find the shoe that held the basement door open for our cat when I was a kid was gone a couple of years after he died, not weird at all.

Kittenpie: Hah! Bought the farm! Excellent.

Sandra: we're still keeping him around, but his status definitely was effected by his disability.

teena: the only toy the cats bother with is a feather toy and the laser toy. scarlett knows that you're the one holding the stupid laser and is clearly too smart to chase it, and Rhett and the dogs go after it as though their lives depended on it.

wordgirl: I love hearing bluejays in the morning - it's also a sound I associate with my parents' house

Elaine said...

I see a Christmas present coming your way!

Ballpoint Wren said...

Alas, poor Clucky.

But he lasted 2 years??? That's amazing.

Heather said...

elaine: Oh goodnes, please no. THe dogs will never know the difference (but they LOVED the cookies though!)

ballpoint wren: We knew her well! She definitely was one of infinite jest for the dogs.