Sunday, June 17, 2007


I have a compulsion to watch the movie, "Jaws", before I go on beach vacations. Eccentric or just plain weird? Perhaps there's some horrible psychological, even pathological, meaning to this little quirk of mine. You decide.

I'm not quite sure how it all started.

I loved Jaws when it first came out in 1975 -- the best movie of that summer.

I remember it scared the bejeebers out of me. I remember watching in horror and fascination as the first victim was tugged this way and that by the unseen shark; screaming at the part when Hooper is in the water at night examining Ben Gardner's chewed-up boat and the head pops out of the hull; and watching right to the end credits when Hooper and Chief Brody drag themselves onto the beach after paddling to shore on the detritus that was The Orca.

When it came out on video, I first rented it, then bought it on VHS tape. Later, I bought the Special Edition VHS. Now, I have it on DVD with behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with the actors.

I can't remember how many times I've watched it. At least enough times that I know most of the dialogue - even the obscure lines like, "That's not funny. I'm sorry, I don't think it's funny." If you know who said that, you get a special Snoopy sticker. What can I say, I liked the movie.

Somewhere along the line I found myself watching it while packing for a trip to Hawaii. Not all that unusual – right? Who doesn't put on some music or the TV or a movie while doing a chore? One day, I realized that before every single trip to Hawaii (which was yearly at that point), I watched Jaws.

It didn't occur to me that it was that odd until one of my sons asked, "Why do you watch Jaws before going to the beach? Isn't it a bit creepy?" To which I had to admit, "I suppose . . .."

The problem now is that I can't stop. It's become part of my packing and getting ready ritual (there's that obsessive-compulsive nature of mine again).

Maybe it's just a subconscious protective mechanism to remind me not to venture out too far in the ocean. Maybe it means I have a subconscious desire to be bitten. Maybe it's a means to assuage pc guilt for all the shark-fin soup I've had in the past. Maybe it's simply a case of me being a creature of habit. Maybe I'm just eccentric.

From a Sunday Scribblings prompt: "admit any eccentricities you have"
More Eccentricity

1 comment:

sundaycynce said...

Of the Sunday Scribblings I have read so far this week, I think yours is the most truly weird eccentricity yet. Most people won't go near the ocean for at least several weeks after watching that. I can't believe you watch it before all beach vacations!!!