While I bathed my baby, Joi, I couldn't stop thinking where that voice was coming from.
| I was aimlessly walking around my house, looking for something to do. All my daughters were playing in their rooms, and my girlfriend was sleeping. We were expecting another baby and day now, and I was really excited. Baby girl number seven! Woah.
I strolled into my music storage room. I had bought a new guitar not long ago, a nice acoustic Yamaha, but I had not yet played it. I noticed it was a bit dusty, so I took it out of its stand to clean it. I sat down and wrapped my tongue around its low E tuner.
I took my tongue off it and examined the room to see who just said that. When I saw there was no one around, I shrugged and continued to clean the tuners.
I paused, looked around, then continued cleaning.
"You, sir, are strange."
I put the guitar down and stood up. It sounded like a grown man's voice talking to me. It came again.
"Do you wash your kids like that?"
I searched every square inch of that room, looking for the owner of the annoying voice. My lovely lover, Kim, walked up to me.
"How was your nap, baby girl?" I sweetly asked her.
"It was good," she replied. "I needed that."
After we kissed for a few seconds, I ran my tongue along her neck. She just loved it when I did that. Then came the voice again.
"Ugh! Do you lick everything in sight?"
I took my tongue off her neck, and we both looked around.
"You heard that, too?" I asked her. She nodded, so I said, "So I'm not going crazy."
"What was that?" she asked me. I replied, "I have no idea."
We paused for a moment and listened, then Kim said, "Well, it's Sunday. Joi needs a bath. Do you mind doing that?"
"Of course not, dearest," I replied. She wrapped her finger around one of my blonde curls and said, "Thank you."
I smiled, and she walked out of the room. Then, the voice asked, "Are you going to lick Joi, too? Ha!"
I spun around to investigate. Nothing.
While I bathed my baby, Joi, I couldn't stop thinking where that voice was coming from. It sounds strange, but I licked my finger, just to see if the voice would come back, but it didn't. I was stumped.
That evening after dinner, I went back up to the storage room. I picked up my Yamaha and ran my tongue along the frets, just to see if the voice would reply. Sure enough, it did.
"No! Not my neck, too!"
I took my tongue off the guitar and asked, "Who are you, for God's sake?"
To be honest, I was a bit spooked. The voice asked me, "Who are you?"
"You don't know who I am?" I asked. I put the guitar back in its stand. The voice asked, "Why are you freaked out by that? Are you someone special?"
"I am, actually," I replied.
"Who are you, then? The King of England?"
"Oh, I'm much more special than him," I said. I heard the owner of the voice scoff.
"You're a little self-centered, don't you think?"
"No. It's true," I replied. "I'm Jude Merriweather."
"What? You're Jude Merriweather?" asked the voice. I suppose he had heard of me. "So that's what you look like. Hmm. Some hair you got there. Thinking about cutting it?"
"You can see me? How come I can't see you?" I asked. The voice replied, "No idea. I'm standing right here. Ha! Standing, ha! Get it? I'm so clever."
"What are you talking about?"
"Dude, you were just holding me."
I looked around.
"Humans," muttered the voice. "Heehee, so stupid."
"Well aren't you a human, too? You can talk."
"Me? Human? Ha! I should say I'm not," replied the voice. "Turn around, you dumb-ass."
"Dumb-ass? Excuse me?" I asked, offended. "If anyone's a dumb-ass, it'd be you."
I looked around, and I saw something terrifying. My new Yamaha had changed. Instead of a full-circle sound-hole, the top half of the sound-hole was gone. The bridge was curved downward, and when I went to bend down in front of the guitar, the bridge turned into a mouth.
"Don't touch me, Merriweather."
I screamed and stumbled backwards. Strangely, my guitar said, "What? I thought big boys like you weren't scared of anything."
"You're talking," I gasped. The guitar sarcastically replied, "Naw, I'm flying. Lady Licker."
The guitar interrupted me with, "Lady Licker!"
"Hey Lady Licker, licked any good ladies lately? You were feasting on that one chick earlier."
"What? How and why are you talking?" I asked.
"I don't know. How and why do you lick everything in your path?"
"Alright, enough," I sighed. The guitar said, "Lick whatever you want, big guy. Just not me."
The bridge of the guitar formed a smile, and the sound-hole changed to the top half of the circle showing, not the bottom half.
"Okay, okay. One more. I now know why women's bodies are so smooth. You lick 'em all clean! Ha!"
"Shut up already," I told the guitar. He chuckled, "Alright, I'm done."
I thought for a moment, then asked, "Wait, can all guitars talk?"
"No. You would be hearing a ton of voices by now. You own how many of us?"
I answered, "Twenty guitars."
"That's freaky," replied the guitar. "Anyway, guitars do communicate through strums, but I've been on display in the shore such a long time that I've picked up on the English language. It's interesting. We guitars are quite smart."
I held back a laugh as I asked, "Really?"
"Indeed. So, big guy, what's with you and that popsicle of yours?"
"Oh my God," I sighed. "Stop. I don't lick everything in sight. Only my girlfriend and you."
"What? Why me?"
"I clean all my guitars that way. They don't complain."
"They can't, genius," replied the guitar. "Anyway, she's your girlfriend?"
I nodded, and he asked, "How long?"
"Almost seven years now," I replied proudly.
"Seven years? What? You should marry her."
"That is true," I replied uncertainly. The guitar asked, "Are you scared, big guy?"
"Then marry her! You've been together how many years? Seven! That's nuts!"
I took out my cigarettes and lighter and stuck a cigarette between my lips. The guitar freaked out.
"Ah! Don't light that! He's got a bomb! Everybody run!"
He began trying to scoot away on his stand, but I pulled my screaming guitar back and said, "Chill, dude."
"Hey, I'm not the one with the Doomsday Device!"
"Why do you freak over everything?" I asked when I took my first drag. He replied, "I don't! I have a right to be concerned about that stick you just set on fire!"
"It's just a cigarette," I replied casually.
"A cigarette," he said darkly. "A devious name for a devious object!"
"It's not devious. It's awesome."
"Do you think nuclear bombs are awesome?" he asked quizzically. I replied, "No."
"There you go! That's what I think of your killing contraption."
"I don't know what you're talking about," I said, mentally exhausted. The guitar asked, "How are you planning to use that, Dr. Evil?"
"I'm planning to inhale the smoke, then exhale it."
I let out a puff of smoke, and the guitar screamed, "Ahh! He's a dragon! We're gonna die!"
"What are you going on about?" I exclaimed.
"Does that stick turn you into a mythical creature?" asked the guitar. I replied, "Um, no. It calms me down."
"Calms you down?" guffawed my instrument. "What, were you planning to go on an emotional rampage or something?"
"No, I just have a headache."
"Well, that stick of doom won't help you."
"What's so bad about these things?" I asked him. He replied, "Well, let's think. You put fire into it, then it turns you into a dragon."
I rolled my eyes and exhaled smoke through my nose. The guitar exclaimed, "See? How are you not seeing this? Smoke is coming out of your nose!"
It shrieked again, then tipped over. I stuck the cigarette between my lips and bent over to stand him up again.
"It's not a big deal, man," I said, trying to calm him down. He argued, "It is too! What's it made of? Poison?"
"Tobacco," I answered. He asked, "What's that? Snake venom?"
"No, it's a plant."
"A poisonous plant?" he asked suspiciously. I sighed, "No, a regular plant."
"That doesn't seem regular to me."
"To humans it is."
My guitar gasped and asked me, "So they're all demonic?"
"What? No!" I exclaimed, fed up with this thing. "Dude, it's completely natural and safe. Take a chill pill."
"Now you're planning to pump me full of pills!" he cried. "You're going to kill me! Oh my Fender!"
"No, no, no! That's a figure of speech."
He calmed down and smiled slightly. "Oh, he-he. Fine, but I'll have my sound-hole on you."
I stood up, and as I walked out the door, I sighed, "Whatever."