Friday, 5 August 2011

Ghosts, Gremlins and the Boogeyman

I don’t watch scary movies. I don’t want to deliberately put myself through the suspense, or be caught off guard by a sight so gross it makes me want to see how far through the digestion process my dinner is. Or keep me awake for the next three nights wondering if there is an alien looking at me through the window as I sleep.

I’m scared of the dark. If I’m walking outside in the dark I shine the torch above my head so there is light all around me (because everyone knows the scary stuff in the dark can’t actually step into the light).

Ghosts and Boogeyman exist. When I’m walking through a door, I squish through really quickly and close the door so that the ghosts can’t follow me through (which is a little illogical, because everyone knows ghosts can float through walls). And I have to have the wardrobe doors closed while I sleep.

I never reach under a couch or bed unless I have checked it for Gremlins, or miniature witches that eat toes.  Yep, you heard right, miniature witches that eat my toes. They are the reason I still run and jump to the bed from a metre away after turning off the light. (I could explain, but the miniature witches deserve a whole post of their own….)

Where did I get these phobias? And why do they still haunt me as a grown adult? The only thing I can put it down to is watching the actual movie “The Gremlins”, when I was about 5.  Before you spout off about irresponsible parenting, I wasn’t actually sat in front of the TV and allowed to watch.  We were staying with my Uncle Garry. He is an ambulance officer who gets posted out to regional locations, I think this time it was Mt. Beauty…

I was put to bed on a mattress behind the couch. The adults wanted to watch a movie, and Gremlins was relatively new and much hyped.

It must have been the cute Mogwai that sucked me in, I wanted a Gizmo! I shimmied myself up the length of the couch, just enough so that I could see the TV screen without being seen by the grown-ups.

The instructions were simple; No food after midnight, No bright lights and No water. Perhaps the Peltzer family would have taken them a little more seriously had the shopkeeper explained the consequences fully.  Woops, a little water on Gizmo and bang 5 more Wogmai’s appear. Not so bad, more cute pets. Charming little buggers who convince Billy to feed them after midnight. Woops.

I will never forget how disgusting those cocoons were, and how utterly terrified I was when Stripe and his buddies emerged as Gremlins and chaos ensued. Stripe was a relentless breeder with a penchant for building armies and attacking innocent people that rivals George Bush. I hated that movie, and I hated that Stripe. I do recall some funny moments, like when they took over the local movie theatre, but every other part of that movie shocked my innocent little brain and I have never recovered.

And I never feed my pets after midnight, just in case…

This post was in response to my Indie Ink challenge for the week... I was challenged to write "a story that you experienced as a kid, that you haven't forgotten to date" by "Disease", I challenged Billy Flynn to write the words to a childrens story book.  Mostly because he is a damn good writer, I had no idea how to challenge him but a childrens story is completely the opposite to his normal tone...  I was completely blown away by his response, you can read it here.


  1. Hehehehehe...this cheered up the morning start for me. Love the miniature toe eating witches. So cool.

  2. I loved the Gremlins when I was little, and they totally creeped me out, too!

  3. This makes me want to go rent the movie - I've never seen it.

  4. Oh, I remember Gremlins well and I think your cautions are all too logical. Did you see the movie "Little Monsters" with Fred Savage and Howie Mandel? I never looked underneath a bed the same way again... great post.


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