Friday, December 24, 2010

The Grandpa Candle

This story begins many many years ago when my mother was gifted a maroon candle by one her students at Christmas time. No one really took any notice of it - at first. It was added to our Christmas display among other candles. But then, we would notice a smell coming from that corner covered in Christmas cheer. A deep, musty cologne smell. The kind that older men typically wear. Our noses eventually singled out the perp - the maroon candle. Henceforth it was called the Grandpa Candle (No reflection on our actual grandfathers. They didn't smell like this). The odour became overpowering and unbearable. We begged our mother to get rid of it. And one day, it was gone.
I don't know who started it, or who the first victim was, but it kicked off years of playful mischief and revenge. Someone (I don't remember who now), tired from a long day, lay down and smelled an unholy smell ushering from their pillow. The mischief-maker had snuck the Grandpa Candle into their pillowcase, staining the case with that odour for days. Or one time, one of us opened a clothes drawer, only to be hit in the face with the rank smell of Grandpa Candle. The Grandpa Candle passed from hand to hand, sometimes laying dormant for months, waiting for the right opportunity to shock the next victim. The first year I moved out, I returned to my dorm after a wonderful Christmas vacation. Unpacking my suitcase, I groaned to find the Grandpa Candle neatly wrapped in my clothes. And so it continued and each new addition to our family was initiated into the legend...
...Until one day, it melted in someone's car during the heat of summer and the Grandpa Candle was no more. Or so my family suspected.
You see, last year, as I was trudging through stores, I spied (or rather sniffed out) some Grandpa Candle tea lights. Not long after, my older sister and her husband received a mysterious card in the mail, with letters cut from magazines and a tea light enclosed. And after a short stay with my younger sister and her husband, she noticed an overwhelming cologne smell circulating through her suite. It took them awhile, but they finally found the cause.
They were placed in the wall vent, where blowing heat would ensure maximum scent circulation.

And now, I live in fear of retaliation.

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