Saturday, January 17, 2009


I have always been a fan of all things frightening. I love a good horror movie any time of the day and Stephen King has been my favorite author since I was 13.

The first Stephen King book I ever read was actually The Bachman Books, which I checked out of the college library on my dad's ID when he was in nursing school. At the same time I also checked out The Talisman. Now, granted these are not the most horrific books he's ever written (in fact, The Talisman made me cry more than it scared me) but I immediately fell in love with his writing style and my love for his stories spiraled from there.

But the fascination with all things frightening actually went back to when I was in the 5th grade and had my 11th birthday party - my first slumber party. We wanted to watch scary movies and scream like little girls (because uhm....we were little girls) and stay up all night and drink "suicides" (where you mix all the soda in the house into one cup and drink up) and maybe put on makeup and talk about boys even though we didn't know much about them. My mom was skeptical about the horror movie marathon we had planned but my grade school BFF DeLisa and I convinced her to take us to good ol' Showtime Video in town to pick out the movies.

For that first sleepover we rented Children of the Corn, It's Alive!, and Of Unknown Origin. High-budget films, the lot of them.

Children of the Corn is a Stephen King short story-turned movie (although he doesn't like to admit he wrote the story the movie is based on because it was so poorly done) and for years all any of us girls had to do to make another one shiver and squeal was just say "Malachi's coming to get youuuuuuuu." I'm sure it was scary at the time, but now when I see ol' Malachi I can only think about Carrot Top and I get cracked up. Abby got this DVD for Christmas and I cannot WAIT for her to see it. She'll probably react to it like she did to Sleepaway Camp - she laughed and rolled her eyes. Kids these days.

It's Alive! is about a woman who gives birth to a human-hating monster baby who consequently slaughters everyone in the delivery room - except his momma, of course - and then goes on a killing spree. All my kids ever did when they were newborns was cry, sleep and poop.

Of Unknown Origin is the basic man vs. rat story line. Rodents in general freak me out and always have, so this movie had me rooting for the man from the beginning. The most memorable scene for me was when the rat-hating man obliterated a grand piano with a baseball bat because the rat was inside. I was really hating that rat, but would've loved to have had that piano...

Right on the heels of our first VCR and the wide world of VHS rentals was the satellite dish. Yeah, you know what I'm talkin' about, don't ya - the gigantic satellite dishes that had to be manually cranked to a different position if you wanted to watch something on a different satellite. This was quite an ordeal, all for the sake of TV beyond three channels. Life in the country left us with either an aerial antenna on the roof or bupkis. No cable out there, no sir.

Our humongous dish sat outside the back patio door and Dad would go out there, leaving the sliding glass door open while Tater or Mom or I would stand in front of the TV yelling "Fuzzy....fuzzy.....better.......ooh ooh! Good!...... fuzzy.....too far, Dad!.... fuzzy......RIGHT THERE RIGHT THERE! STOP!" Dad eventually scratched marks in the metal, labelling the satellites, which made it a little easier, but still, there was cranking and running and yelling involved.

Now, my sister does not share my love for all things frightening and she never has. She is, in fact, so squeamish when it comes to suspense and gore and horror that she barfed in the parking lot after watching Jaws 3D at the Thunderbird Twin in town. When a group of her friends went on a girls' night out awhile back, she lasted about five minutes in I Know Who Killed Me before she left the theater and asked the manager if she could go watch Hairspray instead. Our father simply refused to accept the fact that both of his daughters didn't love scary movies and the poor kid had to watch scary movies whether she liked it or not.

Our dad would scour the Orbit magazine/satellite TV guide thing to find the most gruesome horror movies for us to watch and poor Tater would get roped into watching them every time. Bless her heart. The worst one she ever watched was The Boogens. Poor kid ended up in the bathroom horking up her guts after that one. To this day she still speaks of the emotional scars rendered from that one.

I just happened to find the IMDB page on it the other day, which led me to search for it to buy, which is what sparked this post. I called her at work to ask her, "Which format do you prefer - VHS or DVD?" When she asked for what I said, "I found The Boogens and thought I'd get you a copy!" She didn't think I was all that funny. We spent a few more minutes on the phone, me making fun of her and her defending her squeamishness. I guess I crossed the line by reminding her she puked one too many times.

She retorted, "Well, I may have puked over a horror movie, but you farted in the Tastee Freez."

Touche'. Well played, sister. Well played.


Sam said...

I am totally first. Not partially first, TOTALLY FIRST.

*ahem* That aside, I am a horror fan as well. However, ever since Egg set up residence in my uterus even a commercial for a scary movie freaks me out. Kids these days, huh?

Unknown said...

I think my childhood of scary movies has made me hate them today! I couldn't sit through one now if my life depended on it! That said...

I remember It's Alive vividly. That was wicked. There's a Stranger in the House (the old one) got me pretty good, too.

I also had a flood of memories about our ginormous VCR that looked just like a huge tape recorder. We had the UFO/satellite thingy, too. I wonder where those things go to die?

Jill of All Trades said...

Yeah those sisters are the scariest of all.

Anonymous said...

I was once bored at my mother's so I read the first PAGE of Insomnia and couldn't sleep for a month! I've been through some tough shit but I can't even crack one of his books without hives and sedatives!!!!

Idabel Oklahoma said...

HA! Sittin' here reading, mindin' my own business, enjoying the horror post..and spittin' beer all over the dang computer when I get to the Tastee Freez Fart part.

GERBEN said...

Oh I love Stephen King. I wish I had more free time to read some of his newer books.

And I remember watching It’s Alive! I was that dumb little kid who would watch all the cheesy scary movies and then get really scared and not be able to sleep at night. DORK!

Cap'n Neurotic said...

I have been in a total horror mood for the last month or so; every day I do a search for "Horror (Genre)" on my cable box to see if there's anything worthwhile to DVR. I was this close to going to see a matinee of My Bloody Valentine 3D today, but was too lazy to actually leave the house.

I never have seen The Boogens, but now that I know it freaked Tater out so much, I am incredibly curious. Sadly, tis not available on Netflix, and the days of the Ma and Pa video store that might actually own such a thing are dead and gone in Denton.

And now if you'll excuse me, I have to go to my local library's web page and place a hold on Stephen King's latest book, which I totally forgot about until I read this post.

Collin said...

I've never seen the The Boogens either, and the IMDB plot summary is sparse to say the least. I do enjoy horror movies though.

I've also never farted in Tastee Freez. I have a feeling there's more to that story for it to be so memorable to your sister. Are you going to elaborate at some point, or is it left to our imaginations? If so, I'm gonna say the Pope was there getting a slushie when the very air was rent asunder causing him to sprint for the great outdoors and fresh air.

Okie Rednecks said...

Happy birthday today!!!

Unknown said...

Oh they say it's your Birthday??? happy BDay to you!!! you and your pretty blog!!! geesh
I love horror movies with the sound muted and looking through my fingers does that count???

I am visiting all the blogs nom'd for the 2008 Okie Blog awards...just wanted to say CONGRATS on your nom!!!

we were nom'd in the humor cat...ummm since you cant vote for yourself i am out tryin to drum up votes ;-)

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