I have ideas, usually late at night, and I have the best intentions about them, but if I don't write them down immediately, the moment I think of them, somehow, the urge tends to fade. That's what happened last weekend.
With Halloween just days away, I thought I would maybe write something about fear. When I was a little girl, I was so sensitive to "scary" stuff and horror films in particular, reading the backs of the VHS boxes in the video store left me practically shaking. A few minutes of actually watching one might give me nightmares for years.
(In fact, after seeing Nightmare on Elm Street when I was about 7 -- in a situation engineered by parents who clearly should have won some sort of WORST IDEA EVER award -- I did have nightmares for years. They didn't stop until I was in high school. Bleh. I feel like I've blogged about this before. Have I? Anyway.)
Even in my late 20s, I was highly sensitive to anything spooky. I mean, look at this blog post from 2007. I was awake in the middle of the night even then, kept up by nightmares brought on by the likes of TV shows like Medium and Ghost Whisperer. Ridiculous, I know. But that's how it was. (Ghost Whisperer was a TERRIBLE show, by the way. I'm kind of ashamed to have watched it at all. Medium wasn't bad.)
But something's shifted. Not only have I stopped avoiding scary stuff, I seem to seek it out. I'm literally OBSESSED with the TV show The Walking Dead (which is, I know, not that scary for real horror fans, but I find it riveting). And one show isn't enough. Late at night, I find myself channel surfing, looking for anything to do with murders. I have watched every procedural drama out there, in the hopes of finding a storyline that is scary enough. (Mostly, they're not.) I have this strange urge to see murders before bed. Isn't that weird?
I even order scary movies On Demand when I'm home alone. (Nothing really gory, however. Nothing like Saw or anything. I don't find that kind of thing good or bad, but I just don't care so much about it.) I'm hunting for serial killer stuff. Rapes and murders. Anything with ghosts or a frightening chase.
So what happened? Why did I go from scaredy cat to oddly desensitized murder-consumer? It's like the brain I have now is completely different from the brain I was born with. I don't know if this is a good or bad thing. Most "scary" stuff in popular culture isn't very good, so I end up watching a lot of crap. That's a downside, I guess. But no more nightmares ... that's definitely a plus. It's just odd that a person's tastes can change so completely, isn't it? And for no apparent reason...
Anyway. In other vaguely-fear-related news, last week was Halloween. We had a party on the Saturday before. Nate was Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter and I was a failed mime. Here, look:
Again, I say to you: ANYWAY.
On Halloween night, the rain kept most of the kids away and we just had a handful of trick-or-treaters make it to the door. Nathan carved the pumpkin. It looked like this:
I had hoped to spend the evening walking around the neighbourhood, looking at the decorated houses and checking out the kids, but the rain kept me at home. Instead, I spent the night hunting for scary stuff on television, as per usual. (I settled on American Horror Story, which I no longer think is horrible and actually sort of like, but which mostly leaves me feeling uncomfortable and annoyingly confused, rather than scared. Then I rented that John Cusack movie The Raven, where he plays Edgar Allen Poe. It was so awful/stupid/boring, I had to turn it off before the 30 minute mark. Oh well.)
Anyway anyway anyway. I don't know why I'm hunting for fear since I don't remember enjoying it all that much when it was giving me nightmares and keeping me awake all night. Maybe I miss it because the things that keep me awake now are so much scarier... not to mention real.
I miss the feeling of manufactured fear. It's so much better than the real thing.
Oddly, this is a post about the whole fear thing, but it's nothing like the one I planned to write when I initially thought of it. Weird, eh?