October 31, 2007


Ten Things that have haunted me in the past or haunt me still ...

1. The fact that I ever smoked. Ten months down (since quitting) and still, I feel grossly deprived and a tad short of breath when I exert myself. On rare occasion, I still crave the bitter taste and the stench. If it's not too late, never, and I mean NEVER, smoke! God, I loved them so, yet am ever-haunted by them.

2. Uncle Fred. He was THAT uncle in our family. You know ... the one you read about when little girls grow up and get published? Though I always felt he was creepy, Fred never interfered with my own well-being. He did, however, wreak havoc on at least one cousin. The mere fact that I was ever in a room alone with the man sends a shiver up my spine. (I didn't change the name because I have no intention of protecting this piece of crap)

3. A seance I attended in my teen years. I feel neither here nor there as to whether or not netherworld spirits can take an active part in earthly doings; the jury's still out for me on this. But if they can't? Someone rigged one hell of an incredible prank on a large group of us in my dining room back on Staten Island. I don't think any of us has talked about it since.

4. The last time I ever got sick to my stomach. Isn't that a funny way to say that? "Sick to my stomach" ... wouldn't it be more correct to say "Sick in my stomach?" Anyway, I was just a kid in fifth grade at the time. It happened at home and just around bedtime. It was so traumatic to me because I hadn't done it very often at all up to that point. Like I remember how to count to three, I remember the sensation of not being able to get my breath while hurling. Ew, next haunting please. *call it the power of self-will, but I haven't barfed since*

5. The time I came home to a burglarized and ransacked apartment and without thinking, picked up the phone in the bedroom to call police. The threat hadn't even occurred to me until the voice on the phone said, "PUT THE PHONE DOWN AND GET OUT OF THERE NOW !"
Of course! The intruder could have been standing in my closet right behind me! EW ... more shivers, even still.

6. The first time I saw Jaws. I had read the book twice already, long before the movie was released. Having now watched the film over 20 times (easily), I still don't think one was better than the other. The book lent so much to my imagination - and the movie, well, it was SO well orchestrated ... so realistic at times. Anyway, the first time I sat through the movie, the initial 'reel them in' scene (no pun intended) with the young girl being chomped away from below, oh holy mother of all things lurking in the ocean - my fingers left indentations in the arm of the theater seat! I swear. It still thrills me (read: scares the crap outta me) every time.

7. Finding out that my childhood dentist sits in jail today after being arrested years ago for child molestation - IN HIS OFFICE. He was always a sadistic bastard ... though in my wee Haglette vocab, such words didn't exist yet. He would tell us to raise our arm if the drilling hurt. You could flail that arm to the motions of Beethoven's Fifth and the man turned a blind eye. Freaking drilltard.

8. How when I was a very young Haglette, I would lay in bed at night and imagine my bed to be a boat. I was floating on a vast, open ocean with nothing else in sight. I would stick my knee up beneath my sheet to pretend this tent was my only shelter. Sometimes I would drop a stuffed toy friend on the floor just so I could pretend-save it from the rough waters. The waters were always rough. Why I imagined this I don't know, but it was an almost nightly game I played for a long time. I am not comfy on boats today. I do okay in the pond because - well, there's no rough water. I did okay on the Staten Island Ferry going to work each day because - I had to make money. But I wouldn't even entertain thoughts of going on a cruise or a deep sea fishing boat or any such thing. Brrrrr ... shivers.

9. Watching an elderly stranger morph from sitting at the luncheonette counter enjoying a muffin and coffee into a little pile of quivering and trembling humanity as she lay there having a heart attack right in front of me and the rest of the patrons. She died. Right there where she fell off her stool. It didn't take long either. A fall, a couple of twitches, a gurgle and pffft ... gone. Pretty scary to a young girl of twelve ... especially since we all had to walk around her to get out of the luncheonette so the ambulance drivers could come tend to her. Yup. Still haunts me.

10. My mother's final conversation with me. She wasn't totally coherent, I'll give you that. She lay in her bed and was all but gone from this earth when she suddenly smiled - widely. I leaned in to her ear and whispered, "I see you smiling ... what are you smiling about mom?" She told me, "Oh Carol ... if you could see it. WOWWW... if you could just see it. It's so bright - there are stairs, there are angels - they're very white - SO white. This is beautiful." Now, my mom was a very faithful Catholic. She was a smart lady and loved to dream and wonder about things. She never let loose of her religion though - not for a second. I admire her for that, even though I don't share her beliefs. Sure, the morphine cocktail and pain chaser she was sipping a the time probably helped her to visualize whatever she wanted to. BUT ... if she was right! If it was real! If that's what she saw in her last hours? No way of knowing, is there? It still haunts me ... phew.

Happy Hallow's Eve my little pretties!


Blogger Lyvvie said...

Damn! And I thought my 13 years of non-vomit was impressive. Now the gauntlet has been thrown. (As opposed to lunch) I wonder if I'll last as long.

Jaws was enough once. Never mind 20 times.

11:57 AM  
Blogger CarpeDM said...

No, no, no. No Jaws. No.

I hate throwing up. It is horrible. My will power is not as strong as yours, however, and it hits me lots.

Yet another reason to never go to the dentist again.

12:13 PM  
Blogger Lightning Bug's Butt said...

I've got an 11-year streak of non-vomiting going.

Damn near blew that last weekend with all that tequila.

Good to see you posting again, Hag. Great idea for a Halloween post, too.

4:15 PM  
Blogger J said...

What a great read. Thank you.

I found throwing up horrible as a kid but once I hit adulthood it stopped feeling very bothersome.

6:33 PM  
Blogger kenju said...

I LOVE reading your posts! I am an almost non-barfer; having done so only about 5 times in 67 years. Damn that sounds old.

I agree with you about smoking. I really do wish I had never started and I am so very glad I quit.

11:53 PM  
Blogger Tai said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1:00 AM  
Blogger Tai said...

What an amazing post!
Are those pictures of you? They're fantastic!!

AND, I'm glad that what your mom saw made her smile.

1:01 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

LYVVIE - Yes! Forty-something (shhh) years, barf-free. Gotta love that. (am knocking every piece of wood in this room right now) Thanks for coming over!

CARPEDM - Yeah, I'm with you on the dentist topic - even WITHOUT this particular exposure.

LBB - You kinda hit that nail on the head - I've also never been drunk, which, I'm guessing would help my outstanding streak just a bit - no? Thanks for the visit!

J - Yeah throwing up is probably worse when your a kid just cuz you're less experienced at it. haha Thanks for being my IRL pal and coming by here!

KENJU - And should I look as good as you do at that age, I shall count my lucky stars. Glad to see you, Judy!

TAI - haha ... Yes! Those are all me. Or should I more correctly say, "were" all me. I cheated and used photos from my favorite H'Ween costume 22 years ago. (ps, I think I use the same pics every year on my blog - hehehe) Thanks for coming over again!

9:27 AM  
Blogger MYSTIC said...

That's the gal I know and luv. I'm so old I can't remember the last time I gave the ole heave ho! I want to keep it that way too if you don't mind.

11:32 AM  
Blogger Merci said...

I'm pretty certain we went to the same dentist, even though we're many miles apart. I didn't go to the dentist for a decade or so because of him.

Great photos!

9:58 PM  
Blogger Kurt said...

For myself, I'm not so sure I want a bright white afterlife. I would have to squint all the time.

9:47 AM  
Blogger Walker said...

There is some scary stuff in life that makes some of the horror stories we are told pale next to real life.

As for the dentist I am sure he is being drilled while he is in jail.

10:55 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

MYSTIC - Well, I made it with costume pictures but pathetically, I used the same ones from last year and they are 20 years old!!!

MERCI - Thank you for the props on the pics (read above) ~ And thanks for stopping in!

11:32 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

KURT - You make a good point! I usually avoid extreme light myself ... Glad you came by!

WALKER - Okay buddy, you REALLY got me on that last line. Excellent play on words there! Made my day.

11:34 AM  
Blogger dan said...

Even froma scientific perspective, I have to see there is something we don't know about.

All kinds of weird stuff has happened to me, both in cases where I've been alone and with other people. But then again, I've done a lot of acid.

Though some of the really spooky stuff happened before I ever went near anything mind altering.

5:27 PM  
Blogger MYSTIC said...

I forgive you Hag, but keep next year on the agenda.

As for the ND Experience, maybe she was giving you a view of things to come. All I can add is Been There, Done That...it's real.

6:08 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

great photo shoot.

7:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good post, but I think it would have been more effective if you'd accompanied it with your good self dressed in Halloween costumes.

Ronald The Fruit Bat

7:48 AM  
Blogger Alisa said...

I think you are right ... Jaws is one of the rare phenomenons in which the movie actually rivaled the book! I love both equally.

When my grandmother passed away she was having entire conversations with people from her past that had long since passed away.... Was it the drugs or the afterlife? I am not sure, but she seemed happy, so that's all that matters.

11:00 AM  
Blogger brooksba said...

I had one of those creepy uncles. He spent some time in an Iowa State prison not too long ago. I think Mom always wondered about him and I was kept far away. Unfortunately, another relation wasn't. Ew.

Jaws is very well done. What a classic horror story - I prefer being scaried out of my willies by movies like Jaws than the more recent Saw series. My dad used to make the noises of the music (you know, the ba-dump, ba-dump) while I was little in a pool. No wonder I'm afraid of water.

Love the pictures of you dressed up! I bet Halloween at your home is just the best!

5:46 PM  
Blogger CP said...

Great costume. I mean, that is a costume, right? *wink*

Every family has a creepy uncle fred. Ewwwwww. Now imagine attending a seance with him while watching Jaws.


3:08 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

DAN - I was thinking about the drug-induced fantasy state - believe me - but the part that got me was that she knew it was me standing there with her and not one of my sisters or someone else. She hadn't opened her eyes or spoken to anyone in about 24 hours at that point. Weird. Thanks so much for coming by!!

MYSTIC - I feel forgiven. *grin* We'll have to talk about your ND past sometime. k?

JOE - Thanks so much for stopping in. Can't wait to read more of your ironies.

8:21 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

RONALD THE FRUIT BAT aka ANONYMOUS - Funny. I was going to dress as a fruit bat too. Don't you love irony?

ALISA - You make such a good point and one that I poorly conveyed. Even if the belief is hogwash - even if the visions came to her via measured drug drips - so the heck what? If it's what she was waiting for all her life and finally found comfort in it - amen. So happy to see you resurface.

BROOKSBA - I cringed when I read that you were a tot in a pool when Jaws had been released. Egad! As to the 'bad uncle' - now that I really think about it, I believe I was kept away from him too. Why didn't moms report these whack-jobs (no pun intended) instead of simply taking on the 'out of sight, out of mind' attitude. Grrrr. As always, GREAT to see you here.

CP - Not sure how you found me but SO glad you stopped by! I hung out at your delicious blog this morning and couldn't tear myself away. I think if I went to a seance with Uncle Fred while watching Jaws, I'd have to pray that I get to the bright light afterward! Thank you for coming in and leaving your footprint.

8:33 AM  
Anonymous Coll said...

I totally enjoyed this read and can relate to much of what you say.

I too smoked for many years and I too so regret it. But it is what it is.. and at least in the end, we kicked the beast. Yay for us!!! :-)

I would take comfort from your mom's last conversation. In a way she was describing her reality. Makes one wonder though, doesn't it. Ever since my dad died there is a small piece of me that really hopes there is some truth in this.

Those halloween photos are darn scary stuff. :-)

10:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I forgot to congratulate you on your most important recent effort...stopping smoking! Get yourself a big chocolate doughnut and a pat on the back!


2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guess I am one of the unlucky ones who hurls on a pretty regular basis.Sucks!

1:01 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

COLL - I just wish that with quitting the cigs, such a ugly beast didn't rear its head (weight gain). You're right about the near-death thing ... makes ya wonder ... and in a nice way! Thank you for coming to see me!

TABOR - haha Oh I wish I could afford to reward myself forever with lush foods, but I'm one of those who is now gaining all that weight I should have been putting on over the past 30 years! Now I have an all new challenge ahead of me. Ain't life great?
Glad you came by Tabor!

PREPOSTEROUS PONDERINGS - (love the name) Ewww. You must be like a friend of mine who can't even look at a flesh wound without losing her lunch. No fun at all. Thanks for visiting the Outpost!!

6:26 AM  
Blogger Frustrated Writer said...

What a list! I can think of a few things that haunt me but I have found a couple hits of bourbon and they seem to float away.

4:39 PM  
Anonymous colleen said...

That's you, isn't it?! What an utterly cool and spooky get-up. All I need now is some chamber music.

I was once robbed and came home and they WERE still in the house. Two guys hiding behind doors. I KNEW who they were!

Jaws was so scary and so was the music!

5:45 PM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

COLLEEN - Yup. Those are all me. Well, except for the skeleton guy, hehe. Years ago I did make-up and worked at a haunted house - I was proud of my little accomplishment that night.
OMG I cannot imagine being burglarized and having the thing still in progress!!! (guess what? it ended up that I knew who my intruders were too - which kinda made it worse)
Thanks for taking time to stop by!

7:49 AM  

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