OK, I will admit it: I am a scaredy cat just minus the whiskers and tail.
The “Creature Feature” movies that would appear on TV when I was a kid, horror flicks, slasher films with gore, things that go bump in the night?
Nope. No thank you. I will just sit over here and watch speed dating sur le mans and even then I am not sure if I might not get spooked.
Yet despite my aversion to all things horror, I somehow have surrounded myself in my life with loved ones who worship at the altar of fright flicks.
My late fiancée was an aficionado, with a collection of VHS tapes that, after she died, I sorted through, picking up each box as if it were a dead rat I was holding by its tail.
Among the titles in her collection were such classics as “Basket Case,” “Bloodsucking Freaks” and “Pumpkinhead.” For Carla, a collection of such movies was as normal as having a set of encyclopedias at home.
She even once convinced me (OK, maybe pressured is a more accurate verb) to go to the movies and sit in the front row to watch the zombie apocalypse movie http://www.lindanorgrovefoundation.org.uk/
What I saw of it through the spaces between my fingers was pretty scary.
So having established by bona fides as a chicken that would make Colonel Sanders envious, let me tell you about two other loved ones who are committed hardcore horror fans: childhood friends Rich and Silvio.
These guys are more twisted than a pretzel doing yoga.
They have long joked/threatened that they would lock me in a room, prop open my eyeballs a la ativan rem sleep strap me into a chair and force me to watch the movies that make them giddy and make me squeal and squirm.
Because, you know, what are friends for?
So it was that in advance of Halloween during a rare get-together of all of my childhood friends that they subjected me to a movie called “The Descent,” about a group of female spelunkers who go exploring a cave system they shouldn’t and what happens to them.
It was — spoiler alert! — filled with jump scares and frights.
I have to say that I think I held up pretty well and did not shriek. Much.
Certainly it was nothing compared to our visit last year to a haunted house in New Jersey where I f-bombed my way through the attraction, all the while pushing a friend, John, to move faster through the creep-filled hallways.
Having survived all of that terror last year and the viewing of “The Descent,” I believe I deserve to celebrate this Halloween in a style more in keeping with my aversion to horror.
I’ll have a bowl of Count Chocula cereal while watching Casper on TV.
With the lights on.