My mother was a highly superstitious, old-school Irish Catholic kind of mother, and as a consequence I grew up with an unshakable belief in the supernatural in general; and specifically, that my every move was being watched and weighed by a host of highly judgmental invisible beings, not all of whom had my best interests at heart. This had two effects on my childhood.
The first was that I was inspired to create a fan-dance-like routine based on making sure none of the saints, angels, principalities, powers, Jesus, God, demons, Satan, or dead relatives acting as guardian angels would catch a glimpse of my horrifying grade-school bareness on the toilet or in the bath by cleverly manipulating towels and the shower curtain.
The second was a strong inclination toward the morbid end of the entertainment spectrum.
Book or movie, if it had a lot of gore and aliens and ghosts and Dracula and so forth, I was there, either reading under the covers and hoping the flashlight didn't give out, or sneaking out of my room at midnight to sit 3 inches from the T.V. screen with the sound down.
Looking back, I have to wonder why I felt so compelled to subject myself to it. Imagine midnight, and a totally freaked out little FirstNations holding her screaming pillow and watching, say, The Haunting, while a windstorm is shaking butternuts the size of geodes off a nearby tree to drop KLUNK on the roof at the worst possible moments during the story. I had to scream into my screaming pillow because I was always too freaked out to move while the movie was playing. Oddly, during the commercials I was suddenly able to dash (stealthily) to the bathroom if I had to. This had to be accomplished without raising my eyes from the carpet, because I couldn't risk accidentally glancing at the bathroom mirror since I was certain I'd see something messed up standing behind me. Done, I dashed (stealthily, eyes on the carpet ) back into the front room just in time to see Julie Christie lose her shit.
Cue screaming pillow and butternuts.
I'm long past being terrified by much of anything anymore; but to this day I'll occasionally binge on stupid crap T.V. like Ghost Adventures:
Zak: Gasp! I just felt like something went through me! Like a ghost or a being or something! I mean it! Get a closeup of my goosebumps!or on the huge collection of stories at The Shadowlands site:
Aaron: I feel sick, man. Like I'm going to....all of a sudden man! I gotta go. I gotta go outside (rising panic) I gotta get out NOW! *exuent Aaron clutching his gut*
"The bathroom faucet used to go on at night for no reason. OK so the bathroom was to the right down the hall from my baby brothers' room next to the bloodstained stairs to the attic which were were on an angle to the left but you could see when the light would go on and off in there, and just to the right of my parents room next to the downstairs landing right by my room which overlooked the carport roof where a dark figure used to stand..."I don't know what I get out of it to this day.
What I do know, after a lifetime of this sad preoccupation, is how to deal with The Supernatural. That's the subject of my next post. And you have to wait for it. So, yeah.