The Cast: Blair (“Scrub”, our medical personnel), Cindy (my wife, and partner in crime), Dolyn (the unwitting victim), Jordan (a staff commissioner), Myself (the evil mastermind).
There’s nothing quite like a good practical joke. Especially if it isn’t played on you. Now I’m not referring to when the target—or victim—gets physically assaulted or their hair falls out or they get terrorized so bad that they almost have a heart attack. Nothing that cruel. Just a simple mental game. A little, simple psychological torture, that’s all.
It was a well established tradition that during the last week of Boy Scout Camp the staff would enjoy a big celebratory party as a “thank you” for all the hard work we had put in. And to add to the festivities, there would usually be a theme. One year the theme for the party was Villains.
During the weekend while my wife and I were shopping around for potential costume bits at the local thrift store we came across a golden item, a 10” Dr. Evil plush doll, from the Austin Powers movie. We didn’t know what we could to do with it, but we figured someone would do something with it. So we bought it. That night I figured out what to do with it. A Voodoo doll.
The night before the party I placed the modified Dr. Evil doll on a table corner where it would be seen by the staff as they came in for breakfast, but would still appear to be nothing very important. Attached to the doll with a large straight pin for stabbing was a note, and scribbled on the note was something like, “How evil are you?” It worked. Dolyn couldn’t resist.
I had to go to the upstairs of the lodge to help my wife get our children ready for the day so I missed the actual event but I heard about it over and over throughout the day. What I witnessed first hand when I got downstairs was a panicked, pale faced Dolyn mopping up a 20’ trail of blood that started at a 3’ pool and ended at the sink. His hands were stained in blood and it looked like he was about to throw up.
Apparently, Dolyn had picked up the doll, read the note and tried his hand at Voodoo. After a few stabs he was about to set the doll back down when red began to rise up from the dolls chest, through the fabric. Then blood began to flow from the doll, into his hands, and then onto the floor. Now in full panic Dolyn stood there, frozen. Staff members started yelling at him to take it to the sink across the room. He finally did, dribbling blood the entire way.
Blair was able to quickly identify the blood as fake and that it was definitely not real blood, but that it still needed cleaning up. Having a doll that can be stabbed by pins, anyone can do that. But a doll that bleeds? Not just anybody can do that. But I can. So I did. With a little help from my wife.
The night before, we had carefully unstitched the dolls back and removed some of the polyfill stuffing. We then took a vinyl glove, filled with fake blood, and placed it inside the body, one finger down each limb so as not to distort the figure. The glove would remain stable, it wouldn’t pop, but would leak once punctured. Like a real wound. The fake blood would work into the polyfill, then into the fabric, then to the surface. Blair knew all this because… Because he had seen us working on it the night before. Only three of us knew.
This event electrified the staff. Who did it? How did it get done? Why did someone do it? Was it really fake blood? One staff member in particular, Jordan, was especially curious. He had spent his morning playing at Sherlock Holmes. Finally, at lunchtime, he came to me with everything he learned. Nothing.
“I spoke to everyone. Everyone! And nobody knows anything about that doll. It’s driving me crazy!” Jordan quietly said with concern and desire.
“You asked everyone?” I slyly asked. Punctuating the word everyone while looking him straight in the eyes. He hadn’t asked me.
“Everyone.” Repeated Jordan.
“Interesting.” I resumed eating my lunch.