Zombies and the undead. These are things that one, as an adult, a rational normal adult, no longer fears, or at least should not fear. I am not a normal rational adult. I still harbor thoughts of zombies coming out of the ground whilst I am passing graveyards to suck my life from me… or maybe just my brains. I realize this fear is silly and unwarranted. I know that I have never come across an account of someone experiencing death in this way. I have never passed a graveyard where I found someone, not quite so “fresh” in appearance roaming the grounds in slow jittery movements searching for brains. These things have never happened to me, but I still fear these things.
I am not allowed to watch scary movies. At all. Not even the commercials for scary movies. The titles of some movies are enough to conjure up all sorts of fearful images which lead to many nights of “sleeping” with the lights on and jumping into bed from across the room to avoid the hands that may reach out and grab me from below. The Exorcism of Emily Rose... typing it gives me shutters...or walks upon my grave, shall we say...
These fumbling brain snatcher images are not conjured up by the movies at the time of watching. No, that would be too easy. Instead, only when the images have had a chance to marinate and my warped imagination jumbles and massages the images, twisting them into something truly horrible, perfected to my own personal horrifying hell that it keeps me, and those that are silly enough to sleep around, me awake.
One time, arriving home earlier than I was to be expected, I sat down and joined an “other” for the last part of The Ring. Not Ringu, the really freaky Japanese version, just The Ring. I was fine. We went on to have dinner, chat about the day, normal everyday things. Then came the time to go to bed- the girl, the TV and the water all flooded into my psyche creating all sorts of maniacal fun.
Each unidentified sound was something coming to get me. Shadows cast their sinister selves upon the walls and danced their devil dances. Something was going to get me, I was certain. My cats weren’t allowed to make noise for fear that they would cover the scratching, dragging sounds of the dead coming to offer certain ritual torture before they dragged me off to the nether regions, never to be seen again. The lights remained on and showering was only completed while being guarded by the “other.” There were no moments of his casually walking away to check on something in the kitchen, absolutely not. I must be spoken to as well during all of this so as to be certain that the “other” was indeed himself, not secretly taken over by one of these foul creatures.
The “other” was not pleased. He didn’t sleep. He wasn’t allowed to- for what if these miserable monsters came around? I needed protection. When I did doze off amidst the protective milky light force emanating from the nightstand- glaring nosily into our broken sleep, I had nightmares. Upon waking, I demanded to be held and protected from that which there is no real protection, my own imagination.
Amazingly enough, it only took a few of these hellish episodes for the “other” to realize that maybe, just maybe, horror films were something to watch alone without the happenstance of me popping in to create my own zombies looking helplessly for brains.