Time Out! (Our Creepshow Episode)

Last fall, Paul and I got to write a segment for CREEPSHOW on AMC’s Shudder.

We knew the Season 3 was happening, but didn’t know exactly when our segment would air, so it was fun when Paul walked in and read me an excerpt from a review at BloodyDisgusting.com. Yes—we were Episode 5, which dropped today!

Barrington Smith and Paul Seetachitt’s story is a wistful one. There are no tangible monsters here, nor is there a character covering up a misdeed. The misguided Tim simply wants to honor his father, whose own time was cut short. This tale is not hard to connect to on an emotional level; everyone knows someone who worked themselves to death and was consequently deprived of life’s joys. “Time Out” is simple and direct, but it is also incredibly effective

Kind words. BloodyDisgusting.com gave us four skulls, which is the highest rating of any of the episodes so far in the season.

HorrorObsessive.com also did a recap that was less effusive but still complimented the writing.

For those unfamiliar, Creepshow is an anthology series — kind of like Twilight Zone — but with a horror bent. Each episode is divided into two stories. Our story “Time Out,” got paired up with “The Things In Oakwood’s Past” which was cool segment because it was their first foray into animated story-telling and because it featured Mark Hamill, who not everyone realizes is gifted voice actor for animation. My first L.A. job way back in the day was on a live action video game called Wing Commander IV, and Mark Hamill was in the cast. He collecting some kind of toys that came in McDonald’s Happy Meals, and because he couldn’t leave the set, I think I got to bring him a Happy Meal with toy on a couple of occasions, and he was always incredible friendly and nice!

So this was exciting because it is our first actual produced TV credit! They say you are supposed to celebrate your victories, so I had imagined inviting a few people over, serving some snacks, etc., but the reality is that Paul and I just watched it with our housemate. It was still fun.

And lest anyone think my life is now too glamorous, the other big “happening” at our house is that I have a colonoscopy tomorrow morning, and I just started doing the prep. 🙄

I Saw a Fish Poop

The other night we ate at a restaurant that has a tropical fish tank.

I had a good view of the fish over the shoulders of my dining companions, and I noticed that one of the fish had a small, rectangular protrusion from it’s “belly” region.  For a moment I wasn’t sure. “Is that a belly button. a phallus, or poop?”

They turned to look and both affirmed, “It’s poop.”

Huh.  I would have guessed that it would emerge from a different place. Shows what I know about fish anatomy. Nothing:fish-pooping-sketch

In my own defense, our pet when I was a kid was a dog.

At our table, we all watched, transfixed, waiting for the small brown cylinder to separate from the body of the fish. After a few moments it did, launching then wafting gently down, down… and getting caught in a plastic green frond.

The poop-caught-in-a-frond situation was both unexpected and disconcerting.  We waited for it to resolve itself. The frond swayed softly; at any moment it seemed it would dislodge its burden and the poop would continue its journey into the pebbles at the bottom of the tank, but this didn’t happen.  Instead, the poop remained, clinging to its position: img_3291

Would it ever fall?

Presumably yes, it did, but we didn’t see, because our food came, and we forgot to watch.

And we were  also distracted–per usual– by Paul.

It delights me that after years of marriage, I still learn new information about my husband. This delight is mitigated by the fact that some aspect of the new information is often horrifying. This night I learned that as children Paul and his brother did have fish as pets. Huh, I never knew that–interesting!

And then there’s the turn…

From somewhere, the boys had inherited a fish tank. It was a tropical fish tank, complete with little heater at the bottom.  Unfortunately, Paul and his brother — seemingly operating without parental oversight — didn’t realize that goldfish are not tropical fish, so their goldfish lived with a  perpetual low-grade fever.

The boys also knew little about chlorine and other water quality issues, so their fishes’ eyes exploded or fell from their sockets. Usually just one eye, but in one case both eyes –memorable to Paul because he could see all the way through the fish’s head. Each day after school, the brothers would come home to see whether their fish still had eyes, and/or if they had survived the day. Often, they had not.

Fortunately for the boys’ morale (but unfortunately for every fish who crossed their path) there was a fish store nearby, and goldfish only cost a dollar. He estimates the number of fish who lived briefly in their horror-tank to be “over twenty, but under fifty.”