First off, I didn't plan on writing about sharks in this post yet that's what I ended up doing. I guess they fascinate me. Or maybe sharks control my brain, I really don't know.
I was relatively young when my family moved to the US.
The movie experience, particularly the American movie experience, was new to me, and it really blew my mind. The films I saw featured whole new worlds full of craziness and diabolical weirdness, lots of attractive women and demonic monsters, lots of pithy wordplay and characters embarking on harrowing yet successful endeavors... but I particularly enjoyed seeing all the attractive women on screen. And the monsters were cool too, but they didn't help my psyche very much.
You see, the American film experience is truly unique, at least it was at that point in time, before globalization had really walloped foreign film industries (I don't know how true that is, but it seems that way). Moreover, what added to the power of all these American movies I was seeing around 1989-90, was the fact that I was a naive little 7 year old whose viewing experiences consisted mostly of cartoons. The cartoons I had seen were shorts featuring the likes of Bugs Bunny (I always loved Bugs, but I did find his fondness for cross-dressing a little perplexing), Donald Duck, Daffy Duck (whose insane anger never ceased to amuse me, I always remember Daffy getting his beak blown off his head, I thought that was the pinnacle of hilarious, I still do), and Mickey Mouse (although I thought he was boring).
Little did I know how much contemporary American films would change my provincial outlook and form me into the demonic monster I am today. I've come a long way, that's for sure.
One of my first big screen experiences was Ghostbusters 2. Frankly, it was as terrifying a thing as I've ever seen, specially given how young and impressionable I was. I haven't ever seen the movie again, but I remember snippets from that first, traumatizing visual experience...
One thing I seem to remember from the movie were the monsters or ooze that would materialize out of faucets. I even think there was a scene where the bathtub faucet had ooze coming out of it. It was also around this time that I saw Jaws for the very first time. My cold hard intellectual reasoning quickly put 2 and 2 together and I realized the jaw-dropping potential catastrophes that could take place: not only could monsters and ooze could come out of faucets, but there was a huge potential that Jaws could come out of the faucet. This new fear began haunting me night and day, it smothered me, I couldn't go anywhere without worrying about sharks bursting out of faucets. Even the water fountain at school was a potential death trap. I tried warning my friends, but my broken English didn't allow me to properly convey the gravity of the situation.
My mind, once launched into these kaleidscopic visions, would imagine all sorts of frightening scenarios. One such scenario was the one where my parents would call for me, search for me, only to come upon my bloody bathtub, the murky water topped by a couple pieces of floating flesh, and maybe a jagged bone fragment here and there... Lord knows what they would have thought, I would've been too dead to explain that my demise came about from a shark monster that materialized out of the faucet. And I felt sad, I didn't want that to be their final memory of me, my blood in the bathtub, maybe a shark tooth embedded in a piece of my unrecognizable flesh, serving as a subtle clue that might allow my parents to figure out the godawful truth of my demise...
So after seeing Jaws and Ghostbusters 2 I never really could relax anymore when I was in the bathroom. In fact, the thought of Jaws or monsters coming out of household spigots haunts me to this day. And, needless to say, I'm insanely afraid of the ocean. And you know that grate in pools, the one at the bottom of the deep-end, well, it's connected to the ocean via a long pipe and Great Whites can travel through it and end up in any household pool at any given time (I know others believe this, I've come across an internet post or two that asserted this hideous truth). But the CIA doesn't want you to know this truth, and they've done a bloody good job at keeping it covered up (maybe you didn't notice, but we never heard again from those internet posters who asserted the truth). The CIA might even be right in smothering this awful truth, because the truth might be too hard to handle for most people (that's a Jack Nicholson allusion, I'm subtle like that). Hence, most of us live in ignorance, which is probably for the best.
Sheesh, that was a pretty standard conspiracy theory paragraph, sorry, I don't feel very original sometimes.
Ok, anyways, let me finish this because I don't know what I'm saying.
There is something good that came out of all this. My uncle, to this day, reminds me of the time he brought me and a friend to McDonalds. What we ordered for dessert and devoured with utter joy still perturbs him. My friend and I ordered green slime, you know, I think the Ghostbusters people had a deal with McDonalds at the time... so my friend and I ate this green slime dessert, it was probably just toxic waste covered in sugar... but it was sooooo yummy.
So in the end, the movie Ghostbusters 2 might have scared the crap out of me, but at least I got to enjoy some green slime. A happy ending. Yay!