Just when you thought it was safe to go in the kitchen…


When you’re a little kid, you fear imaginary monsters lurking under your bed or in your closet. Then you become a teenager, and you start to fear rejection. And finally, you grow up, buy a home and spend the rest of your life fearing water.

Ah, water. It keeps you alive, but at times, it can also keep you up at night. I’m guessing whoever installed the pipes in my house put them in at the same time and rigged them all to blow in 2020. It started with a bubbly linoleum floor in my bathroom, and not long after the cause of that leak was fixed, the waterline to the dishwasher started leaving puddles in my kitchen floor.

I’m starting to suspect the dishwasher fiasco was a decoy, because that leak was just too easy to spot. Right out in the open, placed there deliberately to distract me while the pipe leading to my kitchen faucet was silently leaking into the wall behind my kitchen sink. Life is tough enough without your kitchen running misdirection plays sophisticated enough to bamboozle a Southeastern Conference defense.

I guess I don’t need to tell you that I’m now on good terms with my plumber. Given the current social distancing initiatives, I’ve seen him face to face more often than anyone outside my immediate family over the past couple months.

As I type this, there is an industrial fan running full bore under my sink, drying out the wood. The drone of that fan has become oddly comforting, and at this point, I kind of wonder if I’ll be able to write anything longer than a grocery list from here on out without it purring in the background.
Still, my ears perk up every time I hear a drip, real or imagined.

Everyone praised Alfred Hitchcock for taking something as commonplace as a flock of birds and using it to scare moviegoers half out of their minds. I’m sure half of Hollywood is busy at this moment hammering out more thrilling scripts – all ripped from the headlines – about new strains of the bird flu, murder hornets, and a band of colorful characters who own a herd of dangerous jungle cats. And that makes sense – the scariest movies are the ones rooted in things that scare people in real life.
With that being said, I’d like to throw out an idea for a little film called “Water!”

There have been scary movies movies that have taken place in the water before. “The Creature from the Black Lagoon” came out of, well, a lagoon. A shark terrorized people throughout “In the Deep.” And who can forget “Waterworld,” which wasn’t really all that scary, but certainly lost a scary amount of money.

To my knowledge, however, there has never been a movie about water coming to a family’s house to terrorize the occupants. Imagine this – there’s this family, stuck at home during a pandemic. One day they hear a drip, drip, drip … but they don’t think anything of it. Then the floors start to bubble up. Water rains from the basement ceiling, ruining electronics. Then the plumber shows up in the third act and reveals a bill so scary everyone in the theatre runs for the exits.

It even sets up well for a sequel where termites come silently in the night to feast on all the damp wood. So if you know anyone in Hollywood, tell their people to call my people.

While you’re at it, tell them I said “Chao.” They’ll know what it means.


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