40 Important Life Lessons We’ve Learned from Horror Movies

Dragging another bit of Halloween mess out of the archives…

1. If you have stupidly stored an important item in a basement where the light flickers, you just need to forget about it and buy a new one.

2. If the hotel clerk hands you the registration book for you to sign, and the page is dusty and blank, get back in the car.

3. Do not assume that a massive flock of birds flying overhead is simply natural migration.

4. If an apartment neighbor gifts you with a necklace that smells like tannis root, smile politely, escort them to the door, hurl the necklace into the fireplace, and start packing.

5. The last house on either side of the street is not a preferred destination.

6. Large groups of identical, blond-headed children are a warning sign, not a photo op.

7. If Jamie Lee Curtis shows up at a cocktail party, run.

8. If she shows up at the sequel, run faster.

9. Never investigate any noise that sounds like a chainsaw.

10. I don’t care how sexy he is, if his hands are cold, the deal is off. Move on.

11. If the furniture in your daughter’s room is levitating, don’t you think it’s time to get her out of that room? Stop asking people to come in to the room and poke at her, especially if they know Latin.

12. One questionable grisly death at the isolated resort is enough. Why would you sit around the next morning and try to figure things out over coffee? Go!

13. Pizza delivery guys can never be trusted. Have him leave the box on the porch and shove money under the locked door. Especially if you didn’t even order.

14. If the quaint little tourist town or a nearby lake has a really pretty, serene name, you need to change your vacation plans.

15. Do not grab a bucket and head to the ice machine after midnight whilst wearing a skimpy nighty and a whiff of vulnerability.

16. If the people you are looking for in the abandoned warehouse don’t answer the first time you call their names, just assume that things didn’t work out for them and you need to skedaddle. You’ll make new friends.

17. If you repeat any phrase multiple times in front of a mirror, you’re just asking for it.

18. The very first time you sense something odd in the restored Victorian home that you just had to have? That’s the time to leave. Don’t sit around for days in a frumpy sweater, looking sad, wondering if you’ve made the right decision to buy this place. You didn’t. Take the financial hit and start over.

19. If the babysitter you are contemplating hiring is wearing better lipstick than your own, terminate the interview and change the locks.

20. Hoarded food hidden under the bed means the relationship is over.

21. Socially-awkward girls with puritanical mothers should never be underestimated.

22. If you spy a want-ad for a winter caretaker at a Colorado hotel, throw the newspaper away before your husband sees it. And get rid of any axes that might be lying around.

23. Never eat almond cookies.

24. Don’t have wanton, promiscuous sex if you want to make it to the second half of the movie. (Cheerleaders usually go first, add that to your notes.)

25. Former child stars have a lot of bitterness.

26. If someone says to you “try and get some sleep now,” you’re next. Sorry.

27. Always keep a supply of lumber, nails and hammers in your car trunk, because you never know when you might be in a rural area where you suddenly need to reinforce a rickety farmhouse that has the symbol of a goat over the front door.

28. Pancake makeup is a sign of depravity. Trust.

29. If you can’t get a signal on your phone, you shouldn’t be wherever you are.

30. If you happen upon children’s handprints on cellar walls, you have roughly one second to shake off the demonic spell affecting you or you’re toast. (But if you do manage to get away, make sure you backhand the hipster chick who is hollering “Josh? Josh!!” with annoying repetitiveness. That’s not helping things.)

31. There are a lot of delusional people who live in ancient, fog-bound English manor houses.

32. Best-selling authors need to pay more attention to their fans. Dirty birds.

33. Learn how to run without falling down at a really inappropriate time.

34. Neighbors who bring a house-warming gift of freshly-baked goods are often possessed by spirits from the ancient burial ground under their house. Don’t eat anything until you have reviewed old land records at the Town Hall.

35. There is absolutely no good reason why anyone should go camping. Ever.

36. People who wear striped sweaters should be avoided at all costs.

37. Try to make your neck as unattractive as possible.

38. Don’t ever say something along the lines of “Cemeteries don’t scare me. I find them peaceful.”

39. Don’t open the closet door.

40. Don’t. Go. To. Sleep.


Previously published. Minimal changes made for this post.

Note: Some of these guidelines pertain to very-specific movies, making much of the advice a bit cryptic. Extra special bonus points go to the first person to identify the movie referenced in #23.

Story behind the photo: Me, trying on Halloween masks. That’s one creepy bunny, eh?


55 replies »

  1. My grandmother told me to swear at ghosts. Apparently, they find it offensive will go away. Needless to say, I have no ghosts haunting me at home. If only this strategy worked in traffic for vehicles doing 30 km/h on a 50 km/h roadway.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Awww… I don’t know about the almond cookies, or I know and I’ve forgotten I know.
    I know about the Dirty Bird, and striped sweaters and I honestly couldn’t sleep for a very long time… “one, two…”

    That bunny head reminds me of the one from Donnie Darko. It’s a Mad World!

    Liked by 2 people

    • We are eerily alike in our thinking. When I first took a gander at the photo Partner had taken of me wearing that mask (I forced him to do so; he is resigned to my blogging whims), my initial thought was “Donnie Darko!” Of course, I had to use a filter on said image because, why not? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • Have only heard about it. I’ve never seen it. You know me…I remember things.
        I really don’t watch horror movies. I find them to be rather silly. I remember going to see The Exorcist when I was a younger pup. Everyone was talking about it. People were supposedly fainting and walking out. So….I went and I went alone.
        I thought it was ridiculous…and when that head turned all the way around, I laughed. Now that I think back…that was another “taste” of pea green soup. (Still like the soup.) LOLOL

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I just want to know why it’s always ALWAYS mandatory to go off (alone) when someone has been hacked to death in a spectacular manner, hung, decapitated, electrocuted or any of the other dozens of ways script writers off their ‘cannon fodder’ in those movies. Stay with the f*ckin’ GROUP, apparently the killer is a coward, picking off dim-wits one at a time, so DOH??! But then the story/movie/play wouldn’t progress, we’d all be stuck watching dim-wits in clusters in abandoned churches, farmhouses in the middle of immense creepy cornfields, hotels/motels who don’t do housekeeping on a regular basis or that old abandoned psychiatric hospital that never seems to get torn down, despite the fact that small pets and people keep disappearing if they venture near. Maybe the killer is merely following Nature’s design of natural selection and thinning the dim-wit herd. Doesn’t say a lot for the (alleged) beautiful people like jocks and perky cheerleaders who are picked off first.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Well articulated, there are so many morons making poor decision; Here’s a few lines on that.
      Lost in the woods? Cling to your cross/ Cheerleaders give up the goods? Gal, it’ your loss.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Melanie: You are so on target with your analysis. The general synopsis of any horror movie is that people make stupid decisions and then they die, typically in a manner they didn’t quite envision in their day planner. What I would like to see? A (finally) smart horror movie where everyone bands together and does the right thing and manages to vanquish The Evil One. Wait, I might be talking about the 2020 elections. We shall see…

      obbverse: Methinks it’s not the cross they’ve been clinging to…

      Liked by 2 people

    • #17 is actually about the movie “Candyman”, but it also applies to everyday life. If you find yourself repeating a sinister phrase in front of the mirror, you probably shouldn’t be doing it. Life affirmations, though? Go for it!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I was laughing right along and then I got to #34 and realized, I brought a house-warming gift of freshly-baked goods to my neighbor! I’M POSSESSED?!!

    Why is it I’m always the last to know?!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I get nervous when there are a lot of birds around me as well, especially when they do that creepy thing where they all land on the same telephone line and glare at me, chirping darkly in their demonic bird language… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.