So, given that I was stricken this past week with what I think is the plague, or maybe just the influenza going around my apartment, I caught up on some movie viewing. Movie viewing allowed me to do what I was already doing - lying in a haze on the couch with a cold compress on my forehead.
I decided to catch up on movies that I was too young to see when they came out. One might query why I haven't done this before. But I don't question YOUR decision of what to do when you're sick, or have leisure time.
Anyway, I don't know why, but for some reason "Silence of the Lambs" and "Interview with a Vampire" seemed like good ideas. Now, I love a good murder mystery, and suspense is always a key component of a good murder mystery, so I liked "Silence of the Lambs." Clever. And Anthony Hopkins is brilliant in every role he chooses. (See "The World's Fastest Indian." It's about a New Zealander's trek to the Utah salt flats with his forty year old motorcycle to enter Speed Week.)
"Interview with a Vampire" disturbed me much more than "Silence of the Lambs" did.
Me: I shouldn't have watched a gory movie right before bed. (hack hack cough sniffle)
Ethan: Of those two movies, the vampire movie bothered you MORE?
John: But vampires aren't real.
Me: I know that. (in my head: smart alec.)
Ethan: So why would vampires, something, I don't know, fictional, bother you more than a serial killer?
Me: Because it was more graphic. The scenes of violence were more graphic than those in "Silence of the Lambs." That movie didn't show much more than you'd see on a random CSI episode. TV has gotten a lot more graphic than it used to be. So "Silence of the Lambs" wasn't that bad. And besides, the natural is controllable. You can potentially catch a serial killer. But to be doomed to a half-life of a vampire, wandering around doing horrible things to people? That's misery.
John and Ethan: But vampires don't exist.
Me: I know that. But I believe in the supernatural. Which means that even though I don't believe in vampires and werewolves, it wouldn't be that much of a stretch to believe in them.
John and Ethan: You believe in vampires?
Me: Noo- I just told - shut up you two. You know what I - stop laughing.
If you hear a rumor that I believe in vampires, don't buy it.
But "Silence of the Lambs" did remind me of a few key things. Things you should know, should you ever be a witness.
Rule #1 of being a murder witness: Don't go and tell the murderer the suspicious thing you saw them do that you promise you won't mention to the police. Hello, that's a signed guarantee of a knife in your back. You may think you're friends. You may think, "surely Fred couldn't have done it, this would only make him look bad, but I'll tell him what I saw and reassure him I won't tell the police." BANG. You're dead.
Rule #2 of being a murder witness: Don't try to blackmail the culprit. They're likely smarter than you are. Regardless, they're proven to be more violent. If you want the blackmail money, look in the mirror and remind yourself that your tax refund is just around the corner.
Rule #3 of being a murder witness: Always look at the clock. Whenever I hear strange noises, I look at the clock. That way I can be a good witness. "Well, officer, I did hear that loud noise, at 3:37 pm Central." It hasn't helped yet, but I'm sure it will someday. The only time a police officer asked if I heard or saw anything was one day at work. Someone came in and said hello and I turned around in my chair to see a man I didn't recognize. He was dressed kind of like a mailman - shorts, tall socks. Then I noticed the gun. It turned out to be our local police chief. "Did you hear a window break?" he asked. "No. I heard a loud bang at about 3:37 though." "Oh, that was just the neighbor backing her car into the dumpster," he responded. "Oh. Then no, I didn't hear anything." "Ok, well, we had a window broken down the street, so keep your eyes out." "Ok."
Rule #4 of being a murder witness: Make sure it's a real murder. Now, every time I garden, I fully expect to find something unusual. A time capsule from 1939. The final resting place of dearly departed Fido. Or a skeleton. After years of planting and cultivating, one summer day I was digging around with my trowel in the flower bed near my little apartment. I struck something unusual - it looked similar to rock, but somehow...porous. I tried to find its edges with my trowel, but I couldn't, it was too...big. I leapt up, realizing that if this was indeed a skull, my flower bed would be lined with fluttering yellow police tape quicker than I could say "redrum" and that the only person likely to have placed it there was my landlord, trusting that his student tenants wouldn't take an interest in gardening. I also realized I'd have to booby trap my door and lie in wait all night for the landlord to come in and try to silence his murder evidence finder, only to be met with a swift skillet to his skull. So I called my significant other of the time to come over and examine the evidence I had found. By that time it had turned back into a rock, because for some reason when someone else was around to look at it, it had easily findable edges and resembled a rock more and human anatomy less.
But spring is coming, gardening is just around the corner. So I'm still hopeful. Remember the basic rules of being a murder witness, people. It's a tough world out there.