I watch something every morning when I arise that makes me cringe. I walk to the bathroom and look in the mirror and then ….. I cringe. I never used to cringe, it began about ten years ago, something like the portrait of Dorian Gray, only I do not remain young and it is only my reflection growing old. I am also growing old. Who needs a horror film, I experience it every day in real life.
Apart from the everyday reality of being me, the only thing I actually do not like to see on the TV is sometimes the news. I am not doing political here, it does not matter what side you are on, and let’s face it the world at the moment is in a big mess. Some time ago I remember seeing a film where the Americans were attacking the Iraqis. The next day in the news they showed the exact same film where the Iraqis were attacking the Americans. Same people, same place, same fight, so what is real life? Real life is what the media want us to believe is real life.
Apart from the unbelievable Die Hard films with Bruce Willis I once saw him in a film called Armageddon where he was sent to save the world from the impact of an Asteroid the size of Texas. He went in a spaceship with a team composed of well-known actors intending to blow up the asteroid with a nuclear war head. OK, we all know the way these things happen. Some die, some live but Bruce Willis is unbeatable. It was not a scary film, but a typical example of how the film industry works today. It is all done by computer technology; the actors probably do not even have to be in the studio for the film, they are superimposed on the happenings, so how are we supposed to be scared today. At least in the old days of the black and white science fiction films, they had to make the monsters out of plastic and wire. Today they just press a few buttons.
I remember when I was a kid, probably the beginnings of my developing black views on the world. There was the first series on the BBC Television in 1953 known as “The Quatermass Experiment”, more followed and eventually there was a cinema film. I was eight years old at the time and begged with mum and dad to watch it. It was all sort of artificial plastic extra-terrestrials. I spent most of the time hiding behind the armchair and had a peek in between where I saw some sort of strange bony hand gripping onto something. It was a serial and I only watched one part. I decided to let mum and dad watch the rest. I became quite a fan of horror films as I grew older, but I was then at the age where I knew Dracula’s teeth were plastic and the blood was tomato ketchup.
And now for the horror film in my back yard: I wrote a blog about the slug invasion in my garden earlier this week. I really thought I had it under control, but unfortunately the monsoon season returned, bringing with it ideal conditions for slug families to develop and reproduce. My lawn is full of them every evening, my lovely gallardia plants are clinging to the remainder of the flowers and leaves, due to my picking off the snails. I gave up and decided only brutal horror could save my plants. I walked to the kitchen, opened the cupboard (Dragnet music in the background) and took out a packet of salt. It was cringe worthy, but I won the battle. Since my salt attack on the snails, leaving them melting into the earth, they have sounded the retreat. There are still a few isolated idiot slugs that have not yet seen the fate of their brothers and sisters, but they will learn. I now have things under control, I am the slug killer. Armed with my box of salt, they have now become unbelievably tacky. Mr. Swiss did have a little bother with the mess of slime left on the tiles on the patio, but I reassured him and said I will hose it down when the battle is completely won.
Now here is the horror of it all. I have a second yard at the front of the apartment with slug unfriendly plants. Recently the gardener did a refurbishing job, replacing the lawn with sort of arty stonework and redesigning the flower beds. I was very happy with the result. The gardener also cleaned the tiles at the edge. Today I took a short walk in that part of the garden and oh, horror, I saw three slugs walking. They are now three dead slugs walking. The horror of the whole thing was there were four other slugs and they were dead. I did not kill them and they looked rather strange. Something like a half melted slug, but not quite. Their top half (is that the head) seemed to have injuries. Naturally I took a photo. I showed it to Mr. Swiss and he also found it very strange and disgusting (he is developing a slug phobia I think). Is there a slug killing animal prowling in my garden, the Bruce Willis Demon Die Hard Slug Killer, or did the gardeners put some sort of anti-snail poison in between the stones. It all looks very strange, almost horrific. Ok, for the cringers, cover your eyes or look away, darken your computer screen, here is one. Honest it is real, not plastic.
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