Exorcising a Spark from Mary
By ice rivers
Our youngest daughter Mary lives in Boston. Way up North and not too far from Salem and the ghosts of witches past.
I miss her every day but most of all on holidays or whatever Halloween is.
I texted her this afternoon. I told her that I was missing her and I was having writers block.
She suggested that I write something about Halloween.
I told her that was the problem. I had been assigning myself the task of writing something about Halloween. When I assign myself a task, it seems like work and my natural streak of lazy kicks in and blocks me.
She replied "that's the story of my life".
I said that I needed a spark.
She suggested that I write about a scary movie or an experience from the old days of Halloween. "Why don't you write about the guy who came to Baman Ball bound and gagged and tied to a chair. I love that story."
I love that story too but it's long and I've told it so many times that telling it again plus typing it feels too much like work.
Mary knows many of my stories so I started fishing for one that she didn't know.
I asked her if she knew how two of my friends were irresponsibly responsible for an urban myth surrounding the Exorcist.
She said she didn't know that one but it sounded hilarious so I began to text it to her.
Two of my friends, Jim and Keith had somehow managed to get involved in a double blind date. Jim was the kind of guy who customarily wore a tee shirt that said "I have an idea". Jim had some bad ideas particularly one he painfully realized earlier in the week. He had flunked out of community college but decided before he left to drop some acid and try out for the wrestling team. Let's just say that didn't work out well. Jim had never wrestled in his life but on that day, it seemed like a good idea.
Keith liked to wear a tee shirt that said "hold my beer and watch this..." As you might imagine, many people had watched Keith do many things...many of them insanely funny with an edge of alarming.
I guess it was Jim's sister who got the bad idea of fixing up a couple of her friends with Jim and Keith. The plan was to go see the opening of the Exorcist. The guys were not real good with
"dates" but pressured by Jim's sister, they managed to put on shirts and pants and sweaters and shoes and to their amazement, they cleaned up pretty good.
They climbed into Keith's piece of shit car which he had cleared out of beer cans and sprayed with Right Guard. Before picking up the girls, Jim had an idea.....let's go get smashed...which they did in order to calm down and not be "uptight".
They picked up the girls... Betsy and Rose... and the fearsome foursome made their way to the theater. According to plan, they arrived for the very first local showing of the film. There was a line to get in and the double daters. were near the front of it.
Mission accomplished. They became part of the first Exorcist audience in Rochester.
After an awkward attempt at small talk, tensions were relieved when the movie started. After a few minutes, and under the guise of going for popcorn, Keith had to make a deposit of the beer that he had rented prior to the show.
After relieving himself, Keith headed towards the popcorn stand but halfway there he spotted a couch. and figured rest might help the situation. He reclined on the couch and promptly passed out.
Meanwhile his date Rose, who didn't give two shits about Keith in the first place was into the movie and barely noticed that he was gone. Jim had another idea. He decided to attempt to "make out" with Betsy who had another idea that did not include making out with a total, drunken stranger while watching The Exorcist. She opted to watch the movie and made that option clear to Jim who with nothing better to do began to watch the movie himself.
Nobody cared that Keith was gone.
Keith remained in the lobby for the entire duration of the movie. The line outside the box office noticed him on the couch. The word began to spread that The Exorcist was causing people to faint from the intensity of the movie and Keith was "proof". When the movie ended and the new crowd came in, everybody took a cautionary look at Kieth on the couch and prayed that they would not end up like him because film fright..
Meanwhile, the threesome in the movie figured that Keith had bailed out on the blind date and that's why he didn't come back when they finally noticed that something was missing while they headed to the lobby.
As they walked through the lobby, they saw Keith on the couch. Jim, who was not unfamiliar with Keithian situations like this, went over and woke Keith up with an ungentle tap on the forehead.
They got into the piece of shit car and drove the relieved girls home.
The guys, relieved in their own twisted way, decided to go out drinking.
The next day, the local critic wrote about the guy he saw in the lobby who had passed out from fright. The legend began. People were passing out from seeing the Exorcist.
The next day after reading the review, I went to see the film. While wating in line everybody was talking and hoping they wouldn't pass out. One of the people in my group was a kid under eighteen. The ticket taker, now fearful of people passing out, informed us that we couldn't get in because the kid couldn't prove that he was eighteen. A minor pissing contest began as I calimed to be the kids guardian and he had a ticket and he needed to be admitted.
Finally, the manager came and explained how peple had been passing out from the film and he would let the kid in if I was willing to take responsibility if the kid fainted. I said that I would take that responsibility.
On our way in, the ticket taker snarled at me " I hope both you AND the kidd pass out and when you do...don't epect any help from me.
Throughout the texting Mary kept responding OMG and LOL.
At the finish she said "you did it"
And By God, I had thanks to a spark from Mary.