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Scary times present and past
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Scary times present and past

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Our week was highlighted with a fright when another motorist slammed KM as she was driving to the mall. She called me just after it had happened to tell me she had just been in a wreck and that she was OK, but that her Honda hadn’t been so lucky.

KM said that she had a green light and was in the intersection when she was hit on the back left side of the car. Strangely enough, the guy that ran into her claimed he also had a green light. What this can only mean is that the city’s traffic light system that we put so much faith and trust in is starting to malfunction. That being the case, it only seems fair that the city pay for the damages. I’ll keep you posted on how we do with that argument.

I arrived at the scene and a friend of hers was already there, so while I waited the hour and a half for the AAA tow truck to show up, the friend took KM to Doctor’s Hospital, so she could have her bumps and bruises checked out by experts.

When I got to the hospital KM told me that the nurse who checked her in said that the last time she had been there was exactly one year ago to the day. We remembered that it was on a Sunday a year ago when she got a deep gash on her finger as she pulled a knife from our dishwasher. They’ll probably deny it, but now that I think about it I believe the city must have been behind that mishap, too. I mean two bad accidents exactly one year apart? Anyway, from now on when May 30 rolls around we’re going to be very careful. Or at least KM is.

When we got home I fixed dinner and we watched The Exorcist, because we hadn’t been shaken up enough.

I thought back to 1974, when my buddy (who just happened to be the toughest kid at our high school) and I were scared to death by the film. Scary movies were a pretty big deal for us back in the 60’s as well, when we’d head up to the neighborhood theater every Saturday to watch Dracula or some other monster. Those old movies always gave us a thrill, leaving us no worse for wear because we always knew when the credits rolled that the vampires and werewolves and mummies were nothing more than fun fantasy that got our blood pumping a little faster and the girls sitting a little closer.

But The Exorcist was a whole new ball game. On the night my buddy and I got there, the line for tickets was halfway around the block. The hype had been huge but I don’t think that anyone was prepared for what they saw. It grabbed our attention early at the digs in the Iraqi desert. Then came the troubled Georgetown priest and his invalid mother and the desecration of the Virgin statue in the church. The first half-hour had totally creeped us out, but we hadn’t seen anything yet.

After the movie ended, I remember the drained audience silently making their way out of the theatre. My friend and I found his car and he was soon driving over the river bridge towards my house. I looked out into the darkness, which seemed a little darker than before, and was startled by my reflection in the glass, but was also relieved to see I hadn’t changed into a demon.

“Great,” I thought, “as if school and acne and girls aren’t enough, now I have to worry about being possessed.”

The next day was Sunday. My friend asked if he could spend the night rather than drive home in the dark. The next morning mom asked us what we wanted for breakfast, and she seemed surprised when I suggested we go to church instead.

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WORDS OF HOPE                                                                       Pastor Mike Smith

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