Saturday, June 30, 2012
VacMan - An Anthropomorphic Hero
Jade has been leading us through Description and Setting, a writing craft book by Ron Rozelle, and I'm trying to follow along in hopes of learning a thing or two (dozen...). This week's assignment was to write about an object in or around the house in a way that assigns human characteristics. Here goes!
In the world of household cleaners, our vacuum cleaner is the superhero.
He stands ready in the hall closet, projecting a quiet dignity with his stature and his multiple HEPA filters. Beside the boxed Christmas decorations and hoarded gift bags, he hides in plain sight. A hero in disguise.
There seems to be no crack in his facade; each tool is tucked tightly away at all times under form-fitting covers. And yet...I believe that under his muscled exterior, he is perhaps terrified of the evils he expects to face. The upended box of Rice Krispies. The torn bits of styrofoam. The cobwebbed corners. His canister surely shudders in anticipation of the worst jobs, but he is resolute: the house needs him. The people need him. Each morning, he is introspective, checking his powers for weaknesses that would break a lesser hero's suction. He pulls in his gut to calm his nerves, cracking his accordian-hosed neck to release fear like pressure under groaning slabs of volcanic rock.
Although he is a hero, the vacuum cleaner isn't immune to fear. He merely faces down the hair-strewn carpets with determination, propelling his beater-brush forward whether he wants to or not. Reaching his long arms under dark beds despite his quavering engine. Sucking up villainous spiders for the faint-hearted lady of the house.
He does what he must. Because if he doesn't, then who will? He is VacMan. (A nickname he loathes, but bears with resignation as a tribute to the household he loyally serves. He prefers his civilian name: Mr. Dyson.)
As he rolls past crawling babies and shrieking children, he renews a vow of protection:
On hardest vinyl, or thickest rug, no pile shall withstand my tug. Let those who worship crumbs and bugs, beware my power: VacMan's plug.