Is there such a thing as too much music?

This is a common problem. I sit in front of my computer trying to find something to listen to for what seems like hours. I’ve got plenty of music on iTunes, at present, I could listen to music for over 8 days and never listen to the same thing twice (except for all 17 versions of numerous DMB songs courtesy of my husband) It would seem that there should be no problem finding something to suit my mood. It should be a simple process – am I in the mood for something deep and reflective like Elliott Smith or Radiohead…. or something fun and upbeat like John Mellencamp or Three Dog Night? Maybe I want blues like Robert Johnson… or poppy like The Beatles… maybe it’s sunny and The Eagles would be a perfect fit. Sometimes late at night when I’m almost ready to go to bed, surely The Shins would be a better choice than Guns ‘n Roses. Or just maybe, Clint has been out of town and I have an overwhelming urge for some Dave Matthews. See – it shouldn’t be that hard. But it is – as I type this I’m listening to Radiohead’s “Hail to the Thief” and it took me over 10 minutes to make that decision. It might help if I could browse by genre – I know iTunes has this feature but if you’re an itunes user go browse by genre right now and you’ll see what I’m talking about. According to iTunes, the only Alternative Rock music I have is PJ Harvey, Pete Yorn is classified as Punk, and while I agree that Michelle Branch (my husbands, not mine) is pop, I don’t think Mark Knopfler would be too happy to know that he’s stuck there too. In fact, most of my music is placed in no genre – you would think it would be easy to assign Sarah Mclachlan and Aretha Franklin (pop and R&B respectively), but iTunes places them in no category. I know I could assign all the albums appropriate genres but that is too damn much work. So my problem remains. I honestly think that I might just have too much music to choose from. It could also be the way I listen to music. I don’t know what other people do but unless I’m putting on music as background noise to clean or sew or something, I rarely listen to entire albums. If I’m listening to “listen to music” I want to skip around and hear all of my favorites. And yes, I’ve got a million playlists. The problem is that the 25 songs I wanted to listen to yesterday aren’t the same 25 songs I want to listen to today. Sure there are some songs that I’m almost always in the mood to listen to – but the key word is “almost”. There are circumstances under which I just don’t feel like hearing “The Origin of Love” from the Hedwig and the Angry Inch soundtrack – I know it’s amazing that anyone could say that. Also I don’t want to go strictly by these playlists because I forget about music I love. I can go months without remembering how much I love Elton John’s “Goodbye” or Radiohead’s “Climbing up the Walls”. So I have limited choices. I can choose to jump around and listen to a bunch of stuff – the downfall being that this requires constant attention and I might forget a song I love. I can choose a playlist, but this is going to end with me skipping a lot of songs because I’m simply not in the mood to listen to Ani Difranco sing “Shy”. Or I can listen to entire albums which is difficult because there are few albums that I truly like every song on them – Radiohead’s “Kid A”, The Beatles “Abbey Road”, Elton John’s “Madman Across the Water”, U2’s “Joshua Tree”, and right now REM’s “Around the Sun” are the only ones I can do it with. Many albums come close and I suppose I could uncheck “No Surprises” on OK Computer and such and have a few more. Actually, I’m embarrassed to admit it, but I actually just realized that might be a good solution. Ok, but I know that I’m still going to end up switching albums after the first 3 or 4 songs because what always happens is that track 3 or whatever reminds me of some song I like and I have to listen to right this minute and it does no good to finish whatever I’m listening to right now because now anything short of Jackson Browne singing “The Pretender” is just crap. See, as we speak I remembered how much I like that song and I’m going to have to switch over to it – except that for some reason Jackson Browne always makes me think about Broadway plays so now I think instead I’ll listen to the West Side Story Soundtrack and I ask you – How in the hell can someone who is listening to Radiohead suddenly get a desperate urge to hear “I Feel Pretty”?
I hope I’m alone in this, because if I’m not….. I’m scared for this world.

Mel


Butters

Butters

Butters “Captain Chaos” Dickens 2004 – 2005

Earlier this week, a tragedy occured. Not a tragedy on the scale of loosing a child (which also happened in my family this week), but a tragedy nonetheless. It may be hard for some to understand why loosing a pet is so upsetting, but let me try to explain. Some of us do not have children, and some have had children and now they are all grown and living independantly. The desire to nurture and protect those who need us is an instinctual and sometimes overwhelming need. So some of us, when circumstances demand it, choose to funnel this energy into a pet. I guess it really does no good to try and explain it – if your pet is a family member, you already know what I’m talking about, if you are petless or your pet is simply a pet, you’ll never understand. My parents, like me, consider their pets members of their family. A few days ago, my parents lost their beloved Butters. He was hit by a car in front of his home. My parents live out in the country and, unfortunately, this is a fairly common occurance. I talked of Butters in a previous post so I think I’ve made it clear just how special he was to my parents. He managed to weasel his way pretty deep into the hearts of those who knew him only briefly. He was truly a magnificent cat. My parents have had many additions to their family over the years. This is mainly due to their living in the country where many people decide to drop carloads of kittens when they are too lazy to find them good homes. I’ve always believed that there is a special place in hell for people who dump animals, and so it follows that there is a special place in heaven for those that pick them up, dry them off, bring them inside and let them stay. I imagine this place in heaven is also heavily populated with all kinds of pets as well – pets that were lucky enough to wander into the yards of people like my parents, and those who weren’t so fortunate. So here’s to Butters – may you rest in peace. No matter what you choose to call heaven, I’m sure that right now Butters is there; napping someplace soft and warm and will wake in a bit to chase a nut or small bit of string. We will miss him.

Melanie


The Oscars

If you know me very well, you know I have designated a larger than advisable portion of my brain as a warehouse for useless pop culture trivia. One of my biggest stockpiles is the Academy Awards. Never argue with me over which movie won which award in which year. I will always win. I even have a list of all the movies that won Best Picture – I place a checkmark next to each movie once I’ve seen it. Someday, I will have seen every movie to win Best Picture – I’ve been working on this since 1993. I could’ve finished years ago, but I like to take my time with this sort of thing. So every year since about 1991 I’ve watched every movie that is nominated for Best Picture before the awards are given out so that I can make my own opinion about which one should win and which one will win. I’m almost always right. I’ve made inaccurate predictions only once. I’ve dissagreed a couple of times, in 1995 I felt that Shawshank Redemption should have won over Forrest Gump, and in 1998 anything else should have won over Titanic – Good Will Hunting, LA Confidential, As Good as it Gets, and Full Monty were all better movies. But this was the first year I not only didn’t agree with the Best Picture Winner, I made the wrong prediction. I correctly predicted all 4 acting categories, both screenplays, film editing, and director. I even agreed with most of them – except actor – I knew Leonardo DiCaprio had no chance, but he deserved the Oscar over Jamie Foxx. I don’t care that Jamie Foxx really couldn’t see during filming – that makes him less deserving – he didn’t have to act blind. Howard Hughes was a much more demanding role. So anyway, Best Picture – I predicted The Aviator. I watched all the nominated films. Finding Neverland is the only one I would probably watch again. It was kind of a weak year. I would probably watch Sideways again if it came on TV, I would not watch Ray again and I probably wouldn’t watch Million Dollar Baby again, I wouldn’t watch the Aviator again only because if I have 3 hours to spare I’ll watch something I haven’t seen before. So Million Dollar Baby won, and I can only assume that this has everything to do with Hollywood’s love affair with Clint Eastwood. I knew Scorsese wouldn’t get the director Oscar, I figured they’d give it to Clint, but I really, really thought The Aviator would end up on top. Don’t get me wrong, Million Dollar Baby was a good movie – Morgan Freeman was great, Clint Eastwood, while playing the same character he’s played for the last decade was still good, and I don’t have the problem with Hillary Swank that my husband does (I really don’t care that she looks like a man – her body looked fantastic in this movie so I didn’t really notice her face), but the story was very predictable and not at all original. It lacked the “wow factor” that most Best Picture winners create. I usually can predict the winner because it’s the movie that when I watch it in the theater I think, “Wow, this is amazing.” Almost all Best Picture nominees are amazing in some regard – it may be a great story, or perfect acting, or a fantastic set – but the winner usually has multiple wow factors. Million Dollar Baby had one wow factor and that was the perfect acting. It had nothing else. The Aviator on the other hand had more. Cate Blanchett won for her portrayal of Katherine Hepburn and Leo was nominated for his Howard Hughes, so I think it’s safe to say that the movie was well acted. The sets and costumes were stunning. The story was fascinating, and despite the 2 hour and 40+ minutes runtime, the editing was right on. Everything from the camera shots to the music was impressive. I’m at a loss to explain why this movie was passed over for a very ordinary Million Dollar Baby.


Another Poem

At night, inside the house of Sharp
A creature tiptoes in the dark
To pacify the urge to chew
The creature nabs a human’s shoe
Such pleasures only charm so long
When no one’s there to say it’s wrong
Around the doorway, down the stairs
To sniff a cat perched on a chair
A skillful nose detects a treat
Cat cookies simply can’t be beat
Important business now aside
The creature needs to go outside
Depsite it’s desperate whines and moans
It can not wake the human bones
Best effort given, it waits no more
It squats above the moonlit floor
The creature leaves the mess behind
Intent upon more fun to find
What pleasant luck to simply happen
Upon a pile of fast food napkins
This frolic could go on all night
If not for mornings first sunlight
For that is when it’s plain to see
Such capers aren’t reality
A dream while sleeping sadly fettered
But she would if we would let her

Melanie


Butter’s Own Blog Post and some other stuff too

Over the holidays, I met someone who has, I believe, taken me and my sister’s place as favored people in the eyes of my father. This someone is a small, rat-like, stealer of nuts, batter of small objects, and licker of other people’s food. This someone is Butters – a kitten. My parents brought this beast into their home several weeks ago and he has managed to wrap my father around his finger to an extent I could have hardly imagined. So my parents did indeed name this kitten after Leopold “Butters” Stoch of South Park fame, but they were unaware that Butters has an alter ego – Captain Chaos. Discovering that bit of info made a lot of sense to my parents – Butters the cat also spends a good amount of time acting as Captain Chaos, but he is one of the cutest cats I’ve ever seen. He’s about 4 months old and has not figured out how to control his purr – he automatically starts purring the second you pick him up – even when he’s struggling to get away. Check out the Gallery for pics of this magnificent cat.
Anyway, onto other things – It was a good trip, once we got there that is. Our flight from DFW to Ft. Smith was cancelled so we had to find other arrangements. Luckily Clint’s dad and his pilot’s license were able to get us to Fort Smith a lot earlier than American Airlines was able to. We also had trouble getting back home. We were supposed to get home at 9:30pm on Monday – that didn’t happen. Our flight out of Ft. Smith was delayed, and then we had to circle outside of DFW because of weather and by the time we landed our Seattle connection had left. So we tried standby on two flights but got neither so we finally got a flight to Las Vegas at around midnight with a flight to Seattle at 9:30 the next morning. We had to run to make the Las Vegas flight and wouldn’t have made it if the gate agent hadn’t been nice enough to get the plane to move back and extend the walkway so we could board. We spent the rest of the night watching Harry Potter on the laptop and then managed to get an earlier flight to Seattle so by 11am we were home. So I had a whole day to get the house clean and such so we’d be ready for Maggie’s arrival on Wednesday. Speaking of Maggie, she is currently taking a nap which is nice. Earlier, she was trying to help me type – didn’t work out too well, she would be much more efficient if I needed someone to chew through the power cord. Anyway, so my last couple of weeks has been all about cats, dogs, and American Airlines complete inability to get me to any of my destinations. So now I think I’ll watch a little King of the Hill and go to bed.

’till then


Life and such

What follows this introduction is something that I fully intended to write, save as private, and probably never let it see the light of day. But considering the subject, that would prove everything I’ve written a lie. It isn’t that it’s intensely personal – it isn’t. It isn’t that it’s embarassing – not even a bit. It’s that it truly isn’t all that interesting. So know that if you’re reading this, it isn’t meant to be ground-breaking or deeply philosophical; not for anyone but me.

Recently, I almost died. I don’t mean that in a “I was so mortified I almost died” way, or a “This car came out of nowhere – seriously, I almost died” way either. I mean that I really, truly, medically, almost died. Technically, I was dying. Now the only type of almost death I can speak of is the “my body is bleeding from areas that need blood and into areas that don’t” way so I don’t know how it feels if one were dying of poisoning or cancer. I wonder if others who’ve almost died knew that they were dying? I know that when the process began, I kept telling myself I was fine, but I had this nagging feeling that something wasn’t quite right. By the time I called 911 I was positive what was happening was serious. I’d like to say that I called 911 because I wanted to live and knew that medical attention was the only way for that to happen. That statement is mostly true – but there was a part of me that called only because I wasn’t sure how long it would take to die and was scared of the idea that it could still be going on for hours. How much more pain would there be? Would I soon pass out and die without knowledge of the event? What if I threw up? What if no one realized I was dead for days and I started to rot? It was thoughts like those that gave me the will to climb the stairs for a change of clothes (can’t go to the hospital in just panties), decide to place life higher on the list of desires than an overnight bag, and focus more attention than I thought I possessed on one spot of light to keep me in the here and now long enough to make the phone call. Thinking back on the events of that night makes me want to laugh and cry. Laugh because it was insane of me to think I could actually pack a bag, because I was so concerned that my shoes didn’t match, because the EMT really thought an IV would cause more pain than I was already feeling, and for other reasons as well. I want to cry for those same reasons. Am I so vain that I’d risk my life to put on makeup? Am I so stupid that I would keep ignoring obvious symptoms to the point of losing the ability make a phone call to save my life? Am I so crazy that my fear of vomit was worse than death? And why did I think for one second that maybe it would be ok to just close my eyes and just let it happen? I’d always thought that if were stranded in the Andes Mountains by a plane crash, or trapped in a burning building, or standing face to face with someone intent on killing me, or suffering with some life-threatening disease that I would fight to stay alive. I’d still like to think that, but truth is – I don’t know. I could spend the rest of my life playing out scenarios in my mind – but I choose not to. I finally realized that asking myself questions likethe ones posed above is a waste of time. The only thing I know for certain is that right now I am alive. More importantly, I have chosen to be alive. For the first time I understand what it means to be alive and in realizing that, I’ve decided to make some changes. I’ve already decided to take better care of myself. That’s a pretty big improvement on my physical being. On the emotional level, I’ve always been pretty satisfied – but I can do better. One of the reasons I made that phone call was that I had a husband who would never forgive himself for being gone, family that would be heartbroken, and a friend who would miss me terribly and feel responsible for not forcing me to go to the hospital. There were a small group of people that I thought of that night. I talked to them the next day – they expressed concern and sent me flowers. Those are the people I’d like to keep in my life. I’ve always had a habit of trying to keep relationships alive that should have died a long time ago. I don’t think I’ll waste anymore of my time or effort on those. Now I’m not saying it’s necessary to just write off anyone who isn’t on the short list of people to notify in the event of emergency – just that I have a number of people who are important to me and I choose to spend my time keeping those relationships healthy instead of the ones that aren’t that healthy to begin with. I’ve also decided that I’m not going to apologize for the things I do. If I hurt someone, I’ll apologize for the hurt (if I’m truly sorry), but I don’t think I’ll apologize for whatever action caused the hurt. If I’m careless and I hit my husband with a hammer, I’ll apologize for hurting him, but not for being careless with the hammer. I’ll admit I made a mistake, if I think one was made, but I won’t apologize for it. The distinction might be slight, but it does exist. I never intend to hurt someone – but whatever I did to cause that hurt was intended or I wouldn’t have done it in the first place.


Look what I’m getting for xmas!

A little over a week ago, my husband made the mistake of mentioning that he missed having a dog. Of course, I jumped on the opportunity such a statement provided and within an hour, we decided we would get a dog. We had planned on waiting until we got back from Arkansas (for the holidays) to make a final decision. At that time, Clint set about making a plan of his own; to surprise me with a dog for Christmas. Of course, this secret lasted about 4 days before I figured it out. We had already been talking about getting a Goldendoodle (Golden Retriever and Poodle mix) because from everything we’ve read, they are great dogs for apartment life. Luckily, we knew a breeder and now we are just waiting to fly to Arkansas so that we can meet the new addition to our family. I am holding off naming her until I meet her, but when I saw the pictures I immediately thought she looked like a Maggie. Billie (who picked her out) agreed that she did indeed look and act like a Maggie, and Loretta (Billie’s aunt and breeder of the beast) confirmed that Maggie suits her well. We may change it upon meeting her, but right now, we’re calling her Maggie.
So, I present to you, the amazing Maggie:
Maggie

You can see more pictures of this adorable puppy by going here


Worst Analogy Ever

Passing through the living room a minute ago, I heard what I think may be the worst analogy ever. Crossfire is on and I have no idea who our host on the right is – Tucker and Bob seem to be absent today – whoever he is, the topic is sex education. The guest on the left must have been talking about Planned Parenthood (or Evil Satanist’s if you prefer), mystery host on the right responds,

“Passing out condoms in high school is like passing out cookbooks at a fat farm.”

I’m no queen of the analogy, but I could have come up with something much better than this. I don’t even care if they pass out condoms in schools – I’ll care more if/when I have a teenage child – there are problems with both sides of the argument. But back to the analogy, seems to me passing out cookbooks in a fat farm might be a good idea. I’m not familiar with every overweight person’s history, but research shows that one of the biggest contributors to obesity (if not the biggest) is unhealthy eating habits. The majority of cookbooks on the market are either the Better Homes and Garden variety type of cookbook or weight loss specific and these types of cookbooks all include a section on the food pyramid and healthy eating. They also include an abundance of low fat recipes. I guess one could say that the fundamental right’s solution to teen pregnancy is about as enlightened as an anorexic’s solution to body fat.
Tucker and Bob should never be allowed to go on vacation, Paul and James’s usual replacement (her name escapes me – but she usually gets some good one-liners in) is much better.

Mel


Two items

Two news items caught my eye in recent days. Actually, many articles have caught my eye considering the interesting week we’ve had newswise. From the removal to 2 more Scott Peterson Jurors and the subsequent verdict, to the death of Arafat, you could say there’s been a lot going on. But those stories are pretty straight forward and really don’t need any commentary. But, 2 things in particular really raised my hackles.

The first is the news that Vitamin E could be bad for you if taken in really large doses. Wow! No kidding? I’m 30 years old and in my lifetime I’ve heard this news story at least 100 times – just substitute “vitamin e” with beef, eggs, sugar, alcohol, etc. Is the concept of “everything in moderation” so difficult to understand. Apparently it is. So we can all expect to start seeing new supplements touting thier own “safe alternatives to vitamin e”. Within a year or two people will be treating vitamin e with the same insane fear as those “evil” carbohydrates. Speaking of this low or no carb craze, I want to say that for the first time in years, I weigh less than 125 lbs. (122.3) to be exact, the majority of my clothes are too big or unflattering in their unshapelyness. Luckily I’ve always wished for a smaller bust – luckily because even bras I purchased when I was 19 (yes, I kept a couple of bras from that era because I grew out of them so fast they never got worn) are a wee bit oversized. And even more amazing than breaking the 125 barrier is that I’ve done this without purchasing one book with “weight loss” in the title. It all boils down to healthy eating and even more importantly, exercise. Which really means; everything in moderation. What a concept .

Onto the second item.
It seems that Michael Moore is planning a sequel to Fahrenheit 911. As I’ve stated before, I don’t have a problem with Moore making movies of these sorts, but he’s really a bit mislead in his beliefs as to his contribution. With this film, I don’t take issue with his decision to make a sequel, but I have issue with something he said about why he is doing it:
“Fifty-one percent of the American people lacked information (in this election) and we want to educate and enlighten them,”
I can only assume that the 51% he speaks of, would be every single American who voted for Bush. The belief that every vote cast for Bush was a vote cast in confusion or stupidity is highly insulting – even for him. Sorry to say, but many people voted for Bush with full understanding of the truth about weapons of mass destruction, the war in Iraq, the Patriot Act, etc. Moore suffers from the same syndrome as poeple like Rush Limbaugh, Neil Bortz, and Dr. Laura – the belief that if you don’t agree with their point of view, you must not have the information they have. It’s a bad belief – you’re not likely to keep many friends if you truly feel this way.


Scary Movies

Like everyone else in the world, I love movies. And while a good drama or comedy is always good, nothing compares to the horror film. This disturbing desire for something to scare the shit out of me is in my blood. My parents went to see The Exorcist at the drive in when I was a baby (I hear my growling back at Linda Blair was creepier for my parents than the actual movie), and snarling monsters, shrieking ghosts, and screaming damnsels in distress were pretty much a staple at my house. As much as I love horror, I’m very rarely frightened. So I spend a lot of time in front of the TV hoping against hope to be scared out of my wits. Every once in a while a movie gives me a start. So since Halloween is around the corner, and becasue I love lists, I give you my top 10 movies that actually managed to give me a case of the willies.

10. The Exorcist – Possession isn’t always creepy, but when it’s a little girl who says things like, “Your mother sucks cock in hell” to a priest – it’s just unsettling. I know most people pick the head-spinning scene as the scariest, but personally the image of the vandalized statue in the church sets the stage for the whole movie – it also makes me feel super uneasy.
9. Flatliners – This isn’t a great movie, but luckily, greatness isn’t a criteria for establishing horror. This movie has a few jumps, but it also tends to stick with you for a while, especially when you go to bed. The movie has great atmosphere, which puts you in the right mood to be a little nervous during Kiefer Sutherland’s nightmares of a vengeful child he tortured in his youth. Julia Robert’s dead dad is pretty eerie too.
8. Dementia 13 – I’m betting not too many people have seen this movie. This was Francis Ford Coppola’s first film and it’s a decent story. A woman spends time with her husband’s family in Ireland and attempts to work the death of her husband’s little sister to her advantage. It has two pretty terrifying moments. (1) The discovery of the underwater grave (water is scary to me all by itself). (2) The younger brother tells the doctor about a dream he’s had since childhood. In his dream he’s standing next to his mother while there’s a man who is insane in the room with them. The man says that someone else in the room is also insane and when he nods his head, the other insane person will nod their head back. When he nods his head, the younger brother looks up and his mother for comfort and sees that she is nodding too.
7. Nosferatu – The original dracula is still the best. Black and white does well for horror and combined with it being a silent film, you just can’t watch this without feeling some serious unrest. What makes it so great is Max Schreck’s portrayal of Count Orlock (aka Dracula). He was so convincing there are actually rumors that he really was a vampire. But what really gets me are all the scenes of him floating across the rooms – which I’m sure was just the actor on roller skates of some kind being pulled across the room – and the wonderful use of shadow. The shots of the shadows of the vampire’s fingernails and hands reaching out to an unsuspecting victim have been the inspiration for images in A Nightmare on Elm Street and Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
6. The Ring – Most modern horror movies rely on gore to frighten the audience, and usually at the cost of decent story and atmosphere. But not this one. There is some gore, but it’s well placed and isn’t intended to be the main gimmick. The plot is laughable, but it works. The best scene is the final scene where we finally get to see Samara in action. I hear the original is scarier. I’ve got it on my Netflix rental queue so I’ll know soon enough.
5. Halloween – Another classic, but it really does stand the test of time. I don’t know how dangerous a man that could be easily outrun by my grandmother could be, but he sure seems to create a good amount of havoc. Everyone’s got their favorite scene, but for me it’s the hanging sheets scene. You know, where Jamie Lee Curtis looks out her window to catch a glimpse of him between the billowing sheets on a clothesline? Super creepy.
4. Suspiria – Off all the movies on this list, this one is probably my favorite. I love, love, love this film. The plot is insanely lame, but the visuals and the soundtrack more than make up for it. The acting is also pretty bad, though I think this can mostly be blamed on the fact that the film was originally intended to feature a cast of girls under the age of 12. Due to it’s graphic nature, this was changed to older girls, but the dialog was never re-written. It makes the coversations akward at best – and ridiculous at worst. Basically the plot is an American dancer (ballet) travels to Europe to train at a famous school where she uncovers a devious secret. The visuals are amazing – the sets are all vibrant reds and blues, the school is breathtaking, and the music makes you a little uneasy right from the beginning. The music is mostly one track that sounds like a music box, but it’s spooky. The opening murder scene is, in my opinion, the most gruesome and fantastic murder scene in the history of horror.
3. Night of the Living Dead(1968) – This is the only movie that creeped me out as a kid and can still make me check the locks twice and run quickly across the hall to the bathroom in the middle of the night. This is also the only zombie movie I think is worth a shit. Zombie movies just don’t do it for me. Low budget at it’s finest, this movie has some truly terrifying moments. When I was a kid the dead body dripping blood from the upstairs landing was about as scary as scary could get – and I’m happy to say that even as I type this, I’m not looking forward to going upstairs. But what will keep me from going outside for one last cig is the opening scene in the cemetary. “They’re coming for you Barbara, they’re coming for you.”
2. The Exorcist III – Ahh, here we are at the one movie that makes me curl into a ball on the sofa, hug my pillow tight, and whisper with fearful delight, “it’s coming, it’s coming.” The “it” to which I refer is the one scene that scares every person I’ve ever met – the hospital hallway scene. If you haven’t seen this movie, don’t worry about it being ruined, knowning what’s going to happen doesn’t take away any of the scare. I don’t know why this scene is so damn frightening, but it is . When I watch that nurse walk around, performing various tasks while every other person in the area walks away, I’m never prepared for the genuine terror I feel when she walks down a hall I can’t see and that “thing” dressed in a sheet carrying garden shears follows her down that hall. That scene lasts maybe 5 seconds, but it is 5 seconds of pure terror.
1. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre(1974) – Scoff if you will, but for keeping me in a state of true anxeity, my money’s on this one. Leatherface is pretty damn spooky on his own, but combined with the cruelness of this film, nothing could be more horrific. I know I’m reusing my adjectives, but cruel is the only word that really fits the mood. The actors in this film aren’t the best, but because they were truly afraid during the filming (most of the blood on Sally is real) you forget it’s only a story. Contrary to popular belief, Texas Chainsaw Massacre is not based on a true story. The discovery of the room full of bones is taken from descriptions of real-life killer Ed Gein’s home, and while Gein did wear the skins of his victims, his story is very different. Some of the characters are so annoying, Franklin in particular, that you root for them to face the chainsaw, but this just adds to the horror. The fact that you identify with the monster makes it hard to decide what to be afraid of. And you have to feel some sympathy for anyone who was rasied in that family. The scene where they decide to let grandpa take a crack at Sally is pathetic, shocking, and oh so cruel. If you can get all those feelings rolled into one package, you deserve the number 1 spot on my list of scariest movies.
So there it is, I know there are tons of movies that give others a big ‘ol case of the willies, and some of them I’m sure I haven’t seen. So if you also don’t scare easy, and know a movie that wasn’t listed but scares the shit out of you, let me know. I’ll pop some popcorn, turn down the lights, and snuggle up close with a cat (because my husband is way too much of a weenie to watch them with me – I can make him squeal like a little girl by saying “Danny….. come play with us Danny… forever and ever”) and give it a chance.

Happy Halloween
Melanie