Monday, October 19, 2009

Fond Childhood Memories

Recently I asked for suggestions on what to write as I had drawn a blank. Cindy proposed I recount some childhood memories, rooms I was afraid to go into etc. I was reminded of this…

From the time I was a little boy until I was twelve years old my room was in the basement, which was partially finished. This was back in the days when my parents were still together, the house we lived in at the time was twenty or thirty years old. I’ve always been very independent and loved the privacy I was afforded.

One of my favourite activities was to scare the complete crap out of myself by sitting alone in the basement and watching TV in the dark. We had an old black-and-white upright console TV, which was about the size of a Volkswagen and weighed nearly as much. I think it pulled in a whopping two or three channels, but it was still a miracle of modern technology to me.

The basement was huge (as these things seem when we’re young), and resembled a dark bat cave. To an eight year old. I had no table lamp or some such to provide any ambient light when I watched my oh-so-scary shows and movies. As if being in total dark wasn’t enough, the basement windows were at ground level and the bushes used to tap, tap, tap menacingly against them. Finally to make things even creepier the upstairs floorboards creaked whether or not anyone was walking on them.

When I was sufficiently freaked out and turned off the TV, I had to make my way through the darkness to the distant light of my bedroom. Again I my room wasn’t furnished with a side lamp to provide any soft light, so I had to flick off the switch and make my way to bed in the pitch-black. ‘Making my way’ was invariably a ritual of a short run then a four or five foot leap into bed, because I always felt like there was something underneath that was going to grab my foot and pull me under. Funny enough that’s carried over into adulthood and I still feel like that sometimes.

Also, between one wall and the edge of my closet doorframe there was a wall space of about four inches. In the darkness of my room this seemed to be the darkest place of all, and sometimes I imagined it was the doorway into Hell.

Despite my overworked imagination I always slept like a baby. Man those were the good old days huh?


  1. I used to flick the light switch on and off as fast as I could to make it look like some lame-ass imitation of lightning. Used to scare the crap out of myself. I still did it anyway....

  2. I did that when I was seven. No wait, that was this morning.

  3. Aaaawww in the basement? That seems like punishment! Wasn't it cold there? I still sleep with the lights on sometimes... probably because things fly around my house and I get poked in the head at night.

  4. Nah, it wasn't cold Cindy. It was an awesome place to be for a kid who has an overactive imagination.

  5. That actually sounds like fun. It reminds me of books I read as a kid where the 9-year-old boy with the over-active imagination really does find a ghost in the basement or a doorway to a nightmare or something. Very cool!
    What a fun memory, even if it was a little scary for you. ;)

  6. Nah, no imaginary friends or anything too creepy. Unless you count the time my brother and I brought snakes home and they got loose in the basement. My mom's never come so close to killing me!