Here's ... Manny

If we were the sort of family that had bumper stickers, ours would be WE BRAKE FOR TAG SALES. (Yard sales for you non-New Englanders.)

You never know what you’re going to find, Forrest.

Like this guy, which the kiddos named Manny.

Somehow we didn’t notice the way Manny’s hand was stuck under his neck like a you’re-about-to-die signal until our dollar was paid and we were back in the car. My 11-year-old unraveled the strings and sighed. “His hand is free.”

Phew.

The children played with him throughout the day, but soon my 7-year-old boy drifted off to his LEGOs. “Did you know his head can turn completely around?” he asked.

“So where is Manny going to sleep tonight?” I asked over dinner.

“HER room,” the boy announced.

“Um. He could sleep in the living room, right?” she asked.

That night, being the wonderful mother I am, I tucked Manny into her bed, face turned toward her pillow.

Emma laughed, but brought Manny down to kitchen for the night.

Last night, I went to bed to see this.

This morning, Emma bounced around the kitchen. “Notice anything last night?”

“Like what?”

She shrugged. “Oh, I don’t know. See Manny anywhere?”

“Manny?” my husband asked, all innocence. “Is he another pet a should know about?”

(For the record, we currently have Jasper the dog, Winn-Dixie and Pippin the guinea pigs, Spot the Gecko houseguest, and are taking care of Wooly the cat.)

Emma’s eyes widened. “Where is he?” she whispered.

“Where could he go?” I asked.

“You’re evil,” Emma laughed. “I know you hid him somewhere.”

A half-hour later, she brushed her teeth. And found this.

Booyah.

“It’s on,” she said.

I just spotted Manny, reading a home improvement book on the toilet.

You know, this could be an awesome story. A family starts a wicked little game of hiding a creepy doll. Each night the mom and daughter take turns hiding it. But what if one of them stops the game, and the other doesn’t know?

What happens if Manny just keeps showing up on more and more unexpected places.

What if…

Well, we’re having our own tag sale next weekend. Guess who might be up for grabs?