If you did a quick tour of my home, you might notice the absence of carpet. No, there’s not one bit of fiber-weaved flooring in my suburban Houston, Texas home. I don’t even own an indoor rug.
Other than the Italian tile in my kitchen, baths, and entryway, all you’ll find is wood—beautiful, 5-inch wide, 100% hard yellow pine. Each flank of wood was lovingly, if not slightly begrudgingly, put into place by my husband.
The golden hues of wood and the natural imperfections blend harmoniously and add appeal to my mix of not-so-fine antiques and contemporary furniture. The overall style is what I call demure eclectic. In case you’re wondering, “demure eclectic” is one of the latest, the hottest trends in design. I know this because when I’m not writing about murder and mayhem, I specialize in writing interior design articles and naming the latest trends. (Not that I know anything about interior design, mind you, but the magazine needed someone and hey, I know how to write fiction, so...) Anyway, this might automatically lead you to assume that the ambiance factor is why I have wood floors.
Well, you know what that say about assuming.
Nope. That’s not why wood floors grace my home.
Some people who have noted the absence of carpet, asked if one of the Craigs suffered from allergies. Other than my being seriously allergic to exercise, in which it leads to me breaking out … in a sweat . . . the Craigs are allergy-free.
The reason I have wood floors happened several years back. It involves a dog, Bosco, a Boston terrier whom we also dubbed the dog from hell. The story of Bosco is a blog unto itself, but I’ll save that for later. My point is that he was a very expressive canine. To express himself, he’d leave little “surprises” in the house when things didn’t go his way. (And, yes, I do mean those kind of “surprises.”)
At this time, my son was ten, and it never failed that he always found those surprises and helped distribute them throughout the house. Now, I know, you are probably thinking that this is why I have wood floors. However, I said it involved Bosco, but by no means, is he the reason.
On this particular day, I had been scheduled to do an author’s talk at a library about 30 miles from my home. My original plan had been to wing it. Seriously, just how many people would show up to hear little ol’ me?
Remember what I said about assuming?
Well, the morning of the talk, I’d gotten a call from a friend who said she’d heard about the appearance on the radio. An hour later, another friend called to say she’d heard the announcement on the local television. I panicked. I needed handouts, a speech, and I needed it fast.
My husband arrived home, a little late by the way, to take me to the all-important meeting. As we started out the door, my son screamed he’d forgotten his electronic game and could not, would not, leave without it. I mean, he was going to be in a library, where thousands of books lined the shelves, what else could he do there, other than play games?
Hubby, seeing my near panic, jumped in to save the day. He grabbed a different pair of shoes for my son, promised to help me clean when we got back, and ushered us all out the door. Before getting in the car, hubby told my son to remove the shoes and toss them in the trunk. Do I need to mention that the trunk is where I’d put my handouts?
Now, the talk went fine, without the handouts. When we arrived home, I went straight for the supplies. My hubby, still on my good side at the time, told me, “You do the stairs and entryway, I’ll do the hall.” Seemed like a fair deal, and I remember thinking . . . this is why I love that man.
I looked up and sent him the look wives have been sending husbands since Eve realized she’d been conned by Adam to eat the apple. (The whole snake reference is a symbol. Ask Freud.)
“Baby, I explained. “It’s called spot removal. The supplies are under the sink.”
Like a good husband, he came down the stairs to get his supplies. After I finished my chores, I went for the wine and sat in the dark trying to de-stress. Thirty minutes later, mellowed by the Merlot, I started upstairs. I crossed the clean entryway, made my way up the clean stairs, but when I turned into the hall I stopped dead in my tracks.
A little in shock, I made my way down the hall to stand in the doorway of the master suite.
Hubby and the dog from hell were stretched out on the bed. Hubby held a newspaper in his hands. Reading the obituaries I’m sure, due to his thinking he’d be appearing there soon. Slowly, he lowered the paper, looked me right in the eyes, and in a voice that showed little fear considering the situation, said. “I did what you asked.”
And he had. But he hadn’t used the pet stain remover or a scrub brush. He’d used an exacto knife. Yep. Every one of my son’s foot prints had been precisely cut out and removed from the carpet. Spot removal, Craig style.
And that, my dear readers, is the reason why this writer has wood floors . . . put in lovingly, if not slightly begrudgingly, by my husband.
Okay…that’s my wood floor/husband story. Do any of you have funny husband stories? Or funny pet stories? Or fun. . . Hey, do you hear that? I think it’s sirens. I kind of ran into some trouble a while back involving rope, guns and agents, (my next blog) and I might be on the run for a while, but please post your comments—don’t forget the contest we’re running here at Killer Fiction—and I’ll be checking in when the sirens have stopped.
Crime Scene Christie