In this time of scares, it's important to remind people how to stay safe and sound. While I may not have a great knowledge of the Latin language or Middle Eastern politics, I'm an expert where it really matters -- horror flicks. Let my education help you from sharing the same fate as far too many thriller-ignorant people in the past. You are welcome!
1) If someone offers to sell you a beautiful house in the country for an unbelievably low price, do not make the purchase. As nice as it sounds, the house is evil and you and your family will be dead within a month. If there is no cell phone service, and there probably isn't, chances are you'll be brutally murdered even sooner.
2) On a related note, if, at any point during a fun family trip, you can't get a phone signal, turn the car around and go home now. The farther you travel to get a signal, the closer you get to a gruesome death.
3) Should you purchase a house, cottage or cabin in a remote area, and your beloved dog will not enter, run away. Your pet is telling you that evil spirits reside within and plan to kill you. If you ignore your dog's warning and later find him dead (which you will), your poor pet is giving you one last warning to flee, and flee now. If you still ignore the obvious signs, PETA will be the least of your worries.
4) That adorable doll your child has taken to? It's possessed, and intends to kill your entire family. Burn the doll and any other toys in his or her room. While you're at it, burn the entire house down and move. Repeat this process as many times as needed, which will most likely be for your entire life or until you can find a witch doctor who knows the spell to free the miserable demon.
5) If you have a child between the ages of, say, 5 and 15, there's about an 80 percent chance the little tyke is possessed by Satan. While that may sound like discouraging news, know that the adolescent can get better (see The Exorcist). Just be prepared for a very rough patch until said exorcism is performed, or, in a worst-case scenario, the child kills you (see The Omen).
6) Never face an open medicine cabinet while brushing your teeth or gathering toiletries. When you close it, a killer will be lurking in the mirror. Ditto staring into the refrigerator when you open the door late at night: Once you find that yummy snack and close the door, a psychopath will be on the other side.
7) Even if you've butchered, knifed, shot, punched, and strangled someone to death, if you put your weapon down and walk away, he will get up and attack you again. If you were dumb enough to drop your weapon and turn the other way, well, you kind of deserve it.
8) Never, under any circumstance, pull over to a seemingly deserted motel just off the main highway, no matter how tired or lost you might be. Someone or something resides at the building and is planning to kill you. If you drive away and keep finding yourself back at the main entrance, don't bother with GPS: You're already dead.
9) Should you get in your car to drive away from a crazed maniac, don't bother checking under the car or looking in the passenger's seat. He will appear behind you as soon as you get inside and look in the rear-view mirror. And never enter a car garage late at night. Do the smart thing and spend a hundred dollars on a taxi service, then pick up your car in the light of day.
10) If you and a bunch of really popular friends think it's a great idea to be cruel to an unpopular girl in school, think again: Even if she dies she will come back to torture the lot of you, one by one.
11) If you're the prettiest girl in college who's dating the cutest guy on campus while a bunch of sorority girls are being murdered -- and you're a bitch -- stop reading and put your affairs together; you're next.
12) Evil spells and curses, no matter how ridiculous they might sound, are real. Do not ignore them or tempt fate by playing along. You won't be laughing when you bring back to life a thousand-year-old demon who's just been waiting for someone as stupid as you to come along and let him loose.
13) Never move into a home where a mass murder took place or where an ancient burial ground has been paved over. Seriously, people, some of these tips are just common sense.
14) Contrary to popular belief, large cities are much safer than remote country homes where, supposedly, nothing bad ever happens. Anyone with half a brain knows that small, charming towns are where ax murderers and their ilk reside. And if your adorable, sexy, successful husband takes you there so you can get some much-needed rest, don't go: He plans to kill you.
15) Never run into your local church to hide from an evil force. That's the first place Satan looks. Hit Taco Bell or Starbucks. He never checks those spots.
16) It's great that you want to document your journey into a run-down mental institution, or some abandoned caves or even a creepy old house. But do not record your investigation. The evil dead loathe being captured on camera and will kill your crew for filming them. On a brighter note, your death will be recorded for posterity, as the grisly murders will all be filmed in their entirety, no matter what horrifying situations the cameraman endured.
17) Whenever anyone tells you that you're safe now and it's all over and he can't ever hurt you again, be prepared: The worst is yet to come.
18) If you're walking by a building and think you see a person staring at you from an upstairs window or someone opening a curtain, do not enter the residence. Ever!
19) Should you be offered a wonderful, pressure-free job at a mansion, a hotel or any quiet, out-of-the-way place, and find that no one else has applied and that the boss needs you to start immediately, run away. Every previous employee has either been murdered or is in the basement being tortured in some fashion or another.
20) If you and your besties need to get away for a week of relaxation, avoid any location with the word "Lake" in the name. Ditto the words "Creek," "Cabin," or "Hill." Only one of you will make it home alive. In general, stay away from secluded ski resorts, hidden diving spots or cozy campsites. Not to sound like a worrywart, but it's probably best you avoid vacations altogether.
21) Ventriloquist dummies are all possessed. Never go near one, or its "owner." While this might sound obvious, remember that there are people in this world who actually think clowns are cute and fun, not the murderous psychotic maniacs educated people know them to be.
22) Fear of being knifed to death in the shower is so overrated. I mean, seriously, what are the odds? What you do need to be afraid of are bathtubs, especially the claw-foot variety. You'll be sucked under, see ghosts in the suds, watch blood ooze from the drain, and generally be terrorized while you're relaxing in the tub.
23) If everyone you know thinks you're crazy it's because everyone you know wants to sacrifice you, or your baby, in a satanic ritual. Move now, and never tell your best friend or spouse -- he or she is in charge of the proceedings.
24) Do not try and be funny in a scary situation. Demons hate wise-crackers and slit their throats just to shut them up.
25) Never approach a person who is facing away from you, usually in a seated position, even if they are crying and look like your long lost child or a sweet old woman. Once you turn them around, you'll discover they are a horrifying ghostly figure with deathly intentions.
26) Should you decide to take an amazing journey to freezing-cold mountains, untraveled waters or space, enjoy! And know that you're bringing back some sort of deadly creature or nuclear-created monster.
27) Contrary to what security companies tell you, home-surveillance cameras will not keep you and your loved ones safe. The devices just piss off poltergeists, who prefer to roam around unnoticed. Save yourself some money and instead invest in a few wooden stakes and a crucifix.
28) Basements and attics are wonderful places to store old furniture and memorabilia. Sadly, they are also where evil spirits lurk. Should your house have either, move.
29) Never run back into a house after narrowly escaping a murderer, because you "forgot something." Even if that "something" is your best friend. The killer's inside, moron, and your friend's already dead.
30) Should you move into a new home and hear voices at night and thumps from another room, see lights flicker, watch doors creak open and slam shut, observe objects move or reappear after you've disposed of them, witness cats hissing from windows, notice pictures repeatedly falling off walls or a mantel or see blood dripping down the walls, do not shrug it off as "fatigue" or an "over-active imagination." The home is haunted and plans to abduct your soul.
31) Contrary to what almost everyone tells you, you can have sex without fear of being slashed to death post-release. Just follow a few practical murder-safe sex guidelines and you'll be fine. Never have sex with a really dumb guy or girl especially if they're hot, never have sex naked, especially if your boobs are fake, never have sex in the dark, never have sex drunk or high, never have sex while still on the job, and never have sex in an unfamiliar place, including but not limited to, hotels, elevators, high rises, fields, beaches, your baby-sitting gig, a sorority or fraternity house, high-school or college campuses, a car, a graveyard, the woods, a tent, a Jacuzzi or sauna, a cornfield, and, worst of all, your bed. Keep those tips in mind and you're good to go. And, remember, always wear a condom. Better safe than sorry!