The Thermos That Ate Red Hook

The following humble submission is for the Humor Meets Horror extravaganza that Russian intelligence sources told me this site is conducting. Thank you.

This tale is based on a true story of the kind only family life can provide:

People in this shaken town still talk of the old house and the banshee wails that sounded like, “Wa-a-atch out!”

Even worse were the bloodcurdling shrieks: “NO! NO-O-O-!! NOOO!!!”

A boy named Coggins lived in that old house. Each day he came home from school and tossed his backpack into a corner of the kitchen, never bothering to remove his lunch thermos.

“Wash out your thermos!” his mother would wail. “Wa-a-sh it out!”

But Coggins would only shriek, “NO! NO-O-O!! NOOO!!!” and run to his room where his video games awaited him.

The event that destroyed the town began after the backpack sat for an entire summer vacation with leftover macaroni and beef fermenting in the thermos.

The night before school started in September, Coggins woke at 3 a.m. and went to the kitchen for a glass of milk and a Fig Newton.

It was there that he heard a scuttling in the shadows.

On wobbly knees, he turned and saw the silhouette of his backpack in a beam of silver moonlight. It began to rock, shake, and emit horrible groans.

Stifling a scream, Coggins ran upstairs and hid under the covers of his bed.

As morning broke, Coggins awoke unsure if what he’d seen was a dream. When he heard the school bus coming, he hurriedly grabbed his backpack and scampered out the door as his mom wailed, “I don’t suppose you ever washed the …”

On the bus, Coggins noticed his backpack was breathing.

Then the zipper burst and awful red goo gushed out.

Moldy macaroni had formed arms and legs. Big bloodshot eyes rolled in the pulsing mass as it slithered out of the bag.

Coggins screamed and ran up the aisle. Kids followed in terror.

The bus driver looked in his rearview mirror and saw the hideous creature gobbling a second-grader.

Back at the house, Coggins’ dad burst into the kitchen where momma was flattening lard with her red enameled rolling pin while listening to Captain Beefheart’s Trout Mask Replica album at maximum volume.

“Just heard it on the radio!” dad gasped. “Somethin’s eatin’ the town! Nothin’ will stop it! The governor’s callin’ in the National Guard!”

“I told that boy to wash his thermos!” mom hissed as the hideous container of moldering macaroni and beef came up the road with Coggins running for his life in front of it.

“I’ll fetch the car keys,” said dad. “You grab our stuff and the other kids. Don’t forget the cat and the Fig Newtons.”

“No need,” said mom as Coggins bolted in the front door, wild-eyed and puffing. She calmly handed him a bottle of dishwashing soap and a sponge, and firmly pushed him back outside to slay the creature.

The battle rages to this day.


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