On Friday night I read most of American Psycho after I got home from work. This proved to be a mistake. Not because I didn’t think it was a good book,* but because of events that transpired after I fell asleep.
I went to bed fine around one a.m., just a wee bit jumpy from one of the first nasty murder descriptions. I managed to get to sleep fairly quickly only to be woken up by R freaking out.
I woke up confused and freaked out myself, and shortly realize he a) was screaming, although in a muted way b) was clawing at the sheets and comforter, and c) has the worst, most twisted-up expression of pain on his face that I have ever seen. My response is OH FUCK THERE IS A SERIAL KILLER HE** IS MURDERING MY HUSBAND I WILL DIE NEXT FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK. Naturally.
About one second later, I realize there is no one else in the room and R is simply flailing for the sake of flailing, which leads me to my next completely irrational response of OH FUCK THERE IS AN INVISIBLE SERIAL KILLER HE IS MURDERING MY HUSBAND I WILL DIE NEXT WITHOUT EVER SEEING MY KILLER FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK.
Another second later (about five seconds total, if that, have elapsed here) I realize, silly me, that serial killers wouldn’t turn themselves invisible. Where’s the fun in that? I mean, if you’re killing horribly for the sake of it, don’t you want your victims to look you in the eye? This calms me down immediately and I realize R is simply having a really nasty nightmare*** and, while I can’t get him to wake up, I do get him to calm down, roll over, and sleep.
I, unfortunately, am one hundred percent wide awake, and now debating with myself about the validity of my assumption that serial killers would be anti-invisibility. Suddenly, this seems like a distinct possibility. Every creak heralds a transparent Patrick Bateman with a rusty butter knife and a nail gun, come to do me away.**** I eventually calm down enough to close my eyes, but every time I do I see this image:
(For those of you who haven’t seen the movie, Jared Leto [seated, stage left] is about to be horribly axe murdered by Christian Bale [dancing creepily in a raincoat, stage right]. If you really want context you can watch a clip of the scene on Youtube. Just be warned there is some blood and several instances of someone yelling fuck rather loudly, so maybe not around the kiddos or the boss, okay?)
The fact that this reminds me of Huey Lewis and the News just added insult to injury and made for one uncomfortable, sleepless, and irritating night.
So finally, the moral of this story. If you read American Psycho before bed, it is the one night all year that your bedmate will have terrible, screaming nightmares and you will be stuck with an image of a be-raincoated Christian Bale dancing awkwardly to Hip to Be Square while you toss and turn. Oh, and you should probably consider and reject the possibility of invisible serial killers before the idea occurs to you at three a.m. after a pretty nasty shock. But I’m not really sure if that would help anyone but me.
*Two sentence review: Really good book if you have a strong stomach for detailed descriptions of really gruesome murders explained in a detached, matter-of-fact kind of way. If you’ve seen the movie (which I haven’t), I have heard that it is much tamer than the book so don’t go by that for the violence level.*****
** Statistically speaking, of course.
***Airplane crash dream, apparently.
****Oddly the idea of Bateman attempting to sausage-ify me in my kitchen afterwards bugs me disproportionately because I know that as he – the spoiled brat – has never cooked a single thing in his life, he’d probably fuck up my nice knives and pans. But the fact that the state of my cookware after my hypothetical brutal murder and cannibalization even occurred to me is a whole different psychological issue I probably need help with. Not to mention how much the prospect of my good knife being chipped on bone annoyed me. So there you go.
*****The worst murder was completely cut. Rats. Habitrails. Oh my fucking god. If you can’t sort out the method of death from that, be thankful. If you can, trust me, the way it’s described makes it that much worse.