Beware of Swinging Licorice Whips
- October 24, 2016
- Theresa Bertuzzi
Heading to see the movie Ouija with my dad tomorrow night on one of our famous Daddy / Daughter date nights. For years this has been the thing that my dad and I do together. My dad would bond with my brothers over sports but he and I always shared a love for the spooky and weird, which I know I most certainly got from him. It is kind of interesting that two of the most anxiety ridden people in the family are the two that love to have the crap scared out of us the most. Although my brothers enjoy it just as much as we do just not with the same obsession that has my dad and I heading to every creepy movie that hits theaters.
From spooky movies to huge, scary rides we love it all. I think my love of all things creepy started while growing up with my dad and his stories. While other children’s dads would read them a story book at night my dad would tell us original, magnificent tales that often contained three headed, man eating dogs and people trying to remove endless layers of hats off of their head before they were murdered by the king. To this day, I think JK Rowling may have stolen my dad’s three headed dog character. He also had a horror story to accompany pretty much anything you planned to do. If you were heading to the gym he would remind you of the “guy he knew” who lifted too many weights and his guts spilled out in his pants, or if you were ramping up to use a power tool he’d have a great decapitation story to accompany it. Did you know that the human body will continue to run around once its head has been cut off? It’s a fact, just ask my dad! There was a worry and a story for every occasion and for some reason these stories would thrill my brothers and me instead of scare us which was the opposite of what he intended. I really think my Dad just loved us so much and worried about us so these stories were his way of trying to get us to be super careful out there in the big scary world. Instead they made us enjoy and love the thrill of the adventure and although we are not fearless we came to enjoy the thrilling sensation that accompanies the unknown and the scary and we have spent a lifetime egging each other on to try as many scary adventures as we can, much to the horror of my dad who would love to keep us home in a bubble. Although, to this day you will still find me practicing my Kegel exercises every time I do squats at the gym in hopes that my guts will not spill out in my pants because that would be disgusting. Well played Dad! Well played!
My brothers also are fans of thrill rides and spooky experiences and, I was thrilled when my younger brother brought my sister in law into the family and I discovered that she is not only a huge fan of all of the spooky craziness but gave me a niece and nephew who also love it as much as we all do. When my SIL hid a zombie doll in her daughter’s bed and forgot about it until she heard my niece screaming for it to “get out” while launching it across the hallway, I knew that I had met one of my true soul mates! Before anyone judges, you have to meet our children to see how well rounded and normal they all are and understand that they actually love it as much as we do and my sister in law is a very successful social worker, so she knows just how far she can push it without crossing over into an area where permanent personality damage will occur. The result; we have children with hilarious senses of humor who can scare the pants off of anyone with a talent that is really eerie and quite genius at times. One summer the whole group of them, including the children of another fabulous family that we meet up with every summer, created creepy masks which we thought were adorable until we found out that they then spent the evening peeking in other cottagers’ windows just to see what would happen. They scared the crap out of everyone; that is what happened! We couldn’t really blame them though since just the day before, on a family visit to a haunted Academy in Lunenburg, we had my eight year old daughter stand in the window, dressed in white and wave creepily at tourists passing by while we all giggled at the aftermath. I guess you can say it runs in the family. But no worries friends our children know that this behaviour is only acceptable in the presence of each other and would never scare their friends so play dates are still safe in our households.
This fall has been very exciting in our house as the creepy, killer clowns took over newspapers and social media. Two of my own children are as obsessed with the creepy as I am and while everyone else freaked out about clowns invading the neighbourhood my own children came home thrilled to pieces about the idea of creepy clowns stalking the area and had us drive them around the neighborhood on “Clown Watch 2016” in hopes of catching a lurking, red nosed creature that they could take a selfie with. My nieces, nephews and children come by it naturally as my brother and I regaled them all with stories of the creepy clown doll that Grandma and Grandpa bought my younger brother as a child. This doll was terrifying and he used it to frighten me any chance he could get. I found that clown in my parents’ basement when we were full grown and I mailed it to my brother who used it to terrorize friends in their neighbourhood by sitting it in their front window. We no longer have the clown as he disappeared under mysterious and unfortunate circumstances. Apparently my brother and his family thought it would be funny to mail it back to us to give us a good scare and he never arrived. The clown went missing. Now at that time a good portion of our mail was always sent to “Goose River Road” instead of “Hollow Trail Gate,” where we lived, because I am pretty sure our mailman was either really mad at us for the cheap Christmas bonus or was just a drunk. Anyway, I assume that some poor soul on Goose River probably got the scare of their life when they received that package and although I will miss the clown it gives me great comfort to know that he probably went out doing what he was created for and scaring the pants off of some poor innocent victim. If only we could have seen their faces. So glad that this was a few years ago or the clown in the mail incident would have been reported to the local newspapers as part of this clown craze and the whole group of us would have had an interesting story to explain to the local police.
So off we are heading to the movies tomorrow night where my dad will meet me. I will arrive right on time and he will have arrived a half an hour early to buy tickets and pick up the licorice that I use as my security shield and weapon throughout the movie. (More on this to follow) He has worries that we will not get in or get safe parking while I will live on the edge, parking in the darker part of the parking lot because I will arrive late knowing that he will have taken care of everything anyway and will drive my scared but back to my car when the movie ends.
Back to my important snack choices for scary movies; licorice and a diet coke! Diet Coke to sooth my throat from my loud screaming and the licorice that has been my handy tool through horror movies throughout the years. When I know I am going to scream, I bite down on a piece of red licorice like I am about to have a bone set to muffle the piercing scream that I know will burst out. When Something jumps out and scares me I stab at the screen in defiance and during particularly scary parts you will find me swinging that licorice like a whip making sure that no one even thinks about touching me. Licorice is also very useful if you are so scared that you chew the hell out of your straw. One bite to each of the ends of the licorice and you have a new straw! Voila! I battle my way through horror movies with more enthusiasm than the stupid heroin that is frozen in fear waiting for the bad guy to sneak up on her. Clearly she would have survived had she had a good piece of licorice to poke right in the eye of the man killing monster. I think it is my movie going enthusiasm that made me my dad’s horror movie partner of choice as part of his favorite part of the movie is watching my enthusiastic reactions as well as my ability to scare the crap out of everyone around me. Just ask the poor soul who tried to sneak out of one movie to go the washroom. I was sitting on the aisle seat when he returned. He bent down to say excuse me and much to both of our shock and surprise I screamed right in his face and whipped him with a stick of licorice. In my defence, it was at a really scary part of the movie, I didn’t remember that he had left for the bathroom, I didn’t hear him coming and he whispered in my ear and was only about three inches from my face when he did it. I say he was asking for it. He fell right over from the shock and then stumbled to his seat while his girlfriend giggled hysterically throughout the movie. My dad did too. I say he got his money worth!
I realize that this post has very little to do with life with autoimmune disease but part of living life with a disease is just that “LIVING LIFE!” So anyone out there who is sick, hurt, living with anxiety or depression or just tired of dealing with the crap that keeps being shoveled your way, I say to you, “Grab your licorice and diet coke and head to the movies!” “Let’s scream our heads off, wave out licorice swords through the air and spend a moment escaping from the absurdity of this crazy, beautifully broken life!”