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Anybody who knows me knows that I'm a major horror movie buff. Ever since I can remember, I've loved scaring myself silly with Chucky, Leatherface, the Blair Witch, you name it. I wasn't allowed to watch horror movies growing up, but let's just say that I found my ways. Of course, I hated myself as I laid wide-awake at night scared to stick my feet out of the covers, but it always seemed worth it to me on some level.

These days, I'm pretty desensitized to horror, but I guess that comes with the territory. The only movie that truly scared me in recent years was Insidious, and even then I wasn't exactly terrified. If I want to freak myself out, reading some of the amateur horror short stories on the Internet usually does the trick a lot better than anything on TV or film. But, to this day, there is still one thing that sends chills down my spine. Want to give me insomnia? Just play this music:

Or this, for that matter:

While I wasn't allowed to watch horror, for some reason I was allowed to watch Unsolved Mysteries, new episodes and Lifetime 1980s reruns alike. I didn't complain, but man did some of those episodes screw me up. I still remember one about some kind of greenish humanoid creature that supposedly lived in the woods and walked in front of cars. That may sound silly, but the reenactment they did on the show was freaking nightmare fuel for weeks. And then there were the alien abductions. Oh, the alien abductions. Even the non-supernatural stuff was enough to make me hide under my sheets.

There was just something about Robert Stack that could make anything creepy. He could have read aloud a Clifford the Big Red Dog book and made me cry. Once the theme music faded, Stack would inevitably walk out of the darkness and appear on the screen to introduce us to that night's dark and malevolent topic. Here he is introducing the Men in Black, which, stupid movies aside, also Freaked. Me. Out.

Robert Stack passed away in 2003, and I haven't seen a full episode of Unsolved Mysteries since I was a kid sitting wide-eyed on the living room floor in front of the TV. But that music and the sound of Stack's voice...they still get me, and Stack still narrates my nightmares. Every once in a while, somebody on Reddit or elsewhere will bring Unsolved Mysteries up and post a link to the theme music. If it's broad daylight, I'll click and relive my childhood nightmares because I'm just like that. But if the sun has gone down, not a chance.


Kitchen Table Kibitzing is a community series for those who wish to share part of the evening around a virtual kitchen table with kossacks who are caring and supportive of one another. So bring your stories, jokes, photos, funny pics, music, and interesting videos, as well as links—including quotations—to diaries, news stories, and books that you think this community would appreciate. Readers may notice that most who post diaries and comments in this series already know one another to some degree, but newcomers should not feel excluded. We welcome guests at our kitchen table, and hope to make some new friends as well.

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