“Pet Sematary,” by Scott Oglesby

Mar 2nd, 2011 | By | Category: Nonfiction, Prose

I was walking down the beautiful, white washed streets of my home in sunny, southern Spain when I saw two things that combined to bring back a long suppressed memory; a drunken father staggering along with his son in tow, and a dead cat under a parked car . See my dad was sometimes a dick, to put it mildly. He was a heavy drinker, with a penchant for terrorizing his son practical jokes.

I remember that I was only 13 when he gave me Stephen King’s Pet Sematary. I was already an avid reader (I had already read The Talisman and loved it), plus I loved animals…so why not? He’d call me every couple of days just to ask how far along I’d gotten in the book, which I found pretty odd since he usually only called to borrow my paper route money.

During the time I was reading the book, he and his new girlfriend stopped over my mom’s house unexpectedly to tell me, with tears in their eyes…that his cat had been hit by a car. His cat (which was black) had apparently made it home in terrible shape and died an hour later. They had buried it in the backyard. I was understandably upset. 

Two or three weeks after I’d told him that I’d finished the book he invited me to spend the night at his house. I always loved it there because they would allow me drink two beers with them. His girlfriend, who was only 19, was super hot and really nice to me. After the two beers did their magic on my underage bladder I had to use the bathroom, which was in the basement. He told me that the all the lights were out down there and to take a flashlight with me. I didn’t like this since the basement was already windowless, dank, cobwebby and spooky as hell to begin with.

I made my way down the wooden, creaky stairs slowly and saw that the door to the bathroom was closed. When I opened it I saw to my horror that the tiled walls and floor were covered in blood. Then, there was the cat….the dead fucking cat….covered in blood, practically leaping at me to get out of the room he was locked in. I didn’t really comprehend that the cat was rushing towards me to escape the bathroom he’d been locked in; I thought he was trying to eat my brain.

I froze in shock and panic for what seemed hours but was probably 10 seconds as the bloody, dead, brain eating cat shot out between my quivering legs and took off like a dead, bloody, brain eating cat out of hell. First I screamed. Then I ran. 

My dad’s house was almost exactly one mile from my mom’s house. At that age I was running a mile in the low six minute range. That night I probably ran the world’s first three-minute mile, followed immediately by excessive vomiting. 

My dad did eventually apologize and told me it was all fake blood, and a set up. The cat was fine of course. But it did take me a little while to forgive him. And I started bringing a friend or two when I was going to spend the night. While I do forgive him and know that he was a ‘fun guy’ if a little misguided, I also do very much remember that he could be a real dick, not that I’m resentful or anything. 


Scott Oglesby lives in Southern Spain with his wife, large cat, large dog, and tiny, tiny, almost rat-like dog, and is trying desperately to hold on to his shiny, overpriced dreams. His life is pretty much all smoke, mirrors and subterfuge. 

He authors a semi successful (as long as your definition of success doesn’t have anything to do with earning money or actual success) blog at http://zodiblog.wordpress.com/ and is inappropriately proud of this minor accomplishment. You can also find him on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=799494719 if you happen to be into that sort of thing.

Tags: ,

Comments are closed.