You are entering a blogpost, not just of words and images but of mind. A blogpost where a young man has been watching way too much quality television and has begun to think too deeply...on the Twilight Zone.
Before I go on, I want to say this: Rod Serling was a goddamn genius. The guy belted out almost a hundred stunningly good TV episodes, narrated, produced and generally saw to them not sucking, all on budget that would barely pay for some modern actor's cuisine. I've been devouring Twilight Zone episodes ever since I found they were on a totally legitimate website (that is, Netflix. What, what did you think I meant?) and almost every single one has been creative, creepy and insightful.
But I've begun to notice a pattern, a series of events and character flaws.
So, if you ever find yourself drawn into the Twilight Zone, here are some basic tips.
1) Don't panic. This is a simple one that seems obvious, but is often forgotten by the people who enter the Twilight Zone. Yes, a puppet may be trying to kill you. Yes, the furniture might be alive. Yes, you may be stalked by a teleporting hitchhiker. Still, do your level best to remain calm and rational.
2) Are you dead? Once you have become calm, take a moment make sure that you are, in fact, alive. Call your parents (if you have any). Talk to people on the street. Take your pulse. It will save a great deal of hassle if you realize that you are, in fact, dead and everything is a delusion.
3) Assume everything is real. Now that you have determined you are NOT dead (to the best of your abilities, at the very least) you may ask the question of: Well, what if I am dreaming? Don't. It is counterproductive in the extreme. The reasons are simple: If you are dreaming, then you will wake up and everything will be fine, rendering your actions moot. But if you are NOT dreaming, then taking the correct action will see the difference between being dead or walking out of the Twilight Zone alive.
4) Never ever ever EVER accept a deal from Satan.
5) No, seriously, it's a bad idea. Never do it.
6) Think all wishes through. Never wish something without adding in as many safety or control clauses into the wish as you can imagine. The genie is not going anywhere, so feel free to take time and talk it out with others. So that they don't think you are insane (or try to Bogart your genie) make sure to postulate that this is a hypothetical situation.
And finally, the most valuable trick to surviving the Twilight Zone.
7) Be a racial minority! Because so far, only one black person has shown up on the show, and I'm almost 60 episodes in. I know it's the 1960s, but jeeze people. It's almost like the past was racist or something...