Is This the Day Creativity Dies?

This post is going to be a bit different than most of my others. I’ll go back to my “normal” content after this. I’ll go back to writing about scary stories, horror movies, and ghost hunting. I’ll go back to the monsters, vampires, and magick. I’ll go back to turning every holiday (and any average day) into Halloween. The supernatural will be here, waiting for you, as it’s meant to be.

But I’ve seen a disturbing trend on the internet (I know…shocking, right?), and I feel it needs to be addressed.

If you’re reading this years from now— or maybe just months, given our attention span these days—the world is currently in the middle of a pandemic. But unlike during other natural disasters, we still have the internet. There was no hurricane to take out the power, no tornados to knock out phone service. And while the disease is causing tragedy, pain, and fear for far too many people, it’s simply magical for the internet. More specifically, it has brought out an immense creative drive in people who would otherwise be spending their time at work, bars, sporting events, and all the other places we’re not allowed to go right now.

It’s not the creative content that scares me, of course. I love that. I’m grateful for it every day. And I know for so many others, whose situations are far worse than mine, there are some days these moments of creativity may be the only thing that brings a smile to their faces. This content is everything the internet should be on any given day, regardless of the plague status.

The frightening thing is that this creative renaissance is very likely temporary. And that sucks. That’s not how it should be. I’ve even seen comments (sometimes directed at my own creative endeavors, but more often directed at others) saying things like, “you’ve definitely got too much time on your hands,” or “looks like quarantine has finally broken you.”

Is this the world we’re living in? Are we living in a time when creativity and fun, beauty and humor, art and entertainment, are things to be avoided unless we’ve been driven crazy by the temporary lifestyle caused by a killer virus? Do we only create content that makes other people happy if we’re so bored we can’t find one single other thing to do?

Please tell me that’s not the case.

Please tell me that when everything calms down and we all go back to our normal lives, the new-found creativity so many of you have discovered won’t die.

Please keep it going when the world goes back outside.

Because if you don’t; if creativity is something we only use as a last resort…

 

Well, then maybe we really are living in a horror movie after all.

Basil
This is Basil. He doesn’t want us to live in a horror movie. He wants you to check out my YouTube, and is super excited for his YouTube debut coming soon…

If this was a Horror Movie, Would You be Dead?

I’m always making fun of people in horror movies.

“Don’t go in the basement! Everyone knows that!”

“That noise was OBVIOUSLY NOT the cat!”

“Why would you go out in the woods by yourself!?!?”

“PUT THE OUIJA BOARD AWAY!”

How could anyone have such horrible decision-making skills? Do the writers really think people are this stupid?

But then I thought about it a little more. Maybe it was after opening a cupboard that I heard close behind me when I was alone and the cupboards were already closed. Or maybe it was after I went down into the basement alone to investigate a strange sound. Once these things happened, I started noticing, and remembering, other behaviors as well. This made me stop and think.

Are the decisions people make in horror movies unusually bad? Ok, yeah. Some of them REALLY are.

But without the scary music telling us something’s about to happen, without the ominous lighting or unnerving camera angles, without knowing we’re in a horror movie — how many terrible decisions would the average person make?

Let’s take a look at some things I personally have done that are probably going to get me killed if we find out this thing we call “life” is actually a horror movie. I’ll start with 25, but I’m sure there are more.

  1. Investigated sounds that came from other rooms, basements, and attics.
  2. Talked to strangers.
  3. Ignored a sound because I assumed it was just a cat or the wind.
  4. Read something out loud in a language I wasn’t fluent in.
  5. Had sex.
  6. Used a Ouija board.
  7. Played a ‘paranormal’ games, like Bloody Mary and Light as a Feather.
  8. Walked or ran in the woods alone.
  9. Walked through a dark parking lot to my car by myself.
  10. Got drunk.
  11. Walked down an alley at night.
  12. Walked around a big city alone.
  13. Hung out with my friends without telling anyone exactly where we’d be.
  14. Went into a building that had a reputation for being haunted.
  15. Attempted to talk to ghosts in the haunted building.
  16. Went to a medium, psychic, or tarot card reader.
  17. Ignored advice from a weird old stranger.
  18. Said “that was weird,” when something strange happened, then promptly ignored it.
  19. Didn’t get rid of the electronic toy that regularly turned on by itself.
  20. Said, “I’ll be right back.”
  21. Bought old things at a garage sales and antique stores.
  22. Went back to sleep without checking to see why the pile of clothes in my room looked like a person or monster.
  23. Listened to music loud enough that I couldn’t tell if someone (or something) was behind me.
  24. Started talking to someone who came in the door without checking to make sure it was the person I assumed had come in.
  25. Ignored the creepy feeling that someone was watching me.

So, hopefully this isn’t the beginning of a horror movie. But if it is, I hope the audience isn’t making fun of me too much. Because I can’t hear the music, or see the creepy lighting, or feel off balance from the camera angles. Everything seems normal, just like it would have to the victims in the movies until whatever was terrorizing them actually showed up.

What about you? How many things have you done that would have had the audience screaming “Don’t do that!”?  Let me know in the comments.

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I also put spiders outside when I find them in the house, even though I know that didn’t end well for the people in Arachnophobia.