Saturday, March 19, 2011

How Fay got my shrunken head

Goosebumps series by RL Stine

I have a shrunken head story to share. Too bad there are no pictures of him - a quick Google reminded me that mine was probably more of a shrunken regular skull-with-hair than a full-on voodoo/torture victim.

Sydney's annual agricultural show, The Royal Easter Show, was an eagerly awaited event and, if we got to go, my brothers and I used to save pocket money to buy something memorable from the huge variety of often-bizarre stalls. One year, in the early 70s, I bought a rather large shrunken head (white, rubbery, hollow skull, with long, straight, black nylon hair) and it hung in my bedroom for many years, off the end of the curtain rod. Not a terribly functional toy, though, and I suffered buyer's regret pretty soon after the purchase.

We moved house in 1977 and the head's elastic hanging cord had begun to perish - so, instead of hanging up, the shrunken head ended up going on the end of an unused curtain rod that was leaning in the corner of my new bedroom. That put him up almost at ceiling height, and he was pretty much forgotten. In 1984, I moved out of home, taking my extensive array of collectibles with me, but somehow the head was left on the end of his pole; it's not like I pined to have him back - and my mother converted my old bedroom into an ironing room. Sigh.

Then, in 1987, my parents ended up selling the house back to the people we'd bought it from! Max and Fay had regretted moving interstate and wanted their old house back, and Dad and Mum made a great profit on the deal. About a year later, some neighbours told us the story of how poor ol' shortsighted Fay was renovating what used to be my bedroom. She lifted down the curtain rod and ended up with a shrunken head in her hands. Her screams could be heard across the suburb.

No comments: