My cousin, Ken, has a favorite story about our Granny. He says when he was little, he used to sneak up on her to scare her. One day, my aunt caught him. “Don’t scare your Granny like that!” she scolded. Now, you and I both know that my aunt was afraid Granny’s old heart couldn’t take that kind of exercise. But later on, Granny pulled Ken aside and told him to keep doing what he’d been doing. “I like the way it makes me feel,” she said.
My oldest sister (she insists we say “eldest”) was terrified of vampires yet she was addicted to Dark Shadows. Although Barnabas Collins gave her serious nightmares, she’d rush in after school each weekday to watch. When those nightmares got the best of her, she climbed into bed with me.
My youngest sister was always glued to the television no matter what we were watching–scary or not. The second the intense music began, she’d put her hands over her eyes and scream, “Don’t let me look!” But we couldn’t stop her. No matter how scared she was, she always spread her fingers and peeked between them.
I wasn’t afraid of vampires. Reruns of Perry Mason gave me bad dreams. Human monsters scare the hell out of me. Always have.
Talk about human monsters.
I’m scared. But I’m peeking between my fingers.