The Shrubbery
August 1999
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Blair Witch: Ride the Adventure

By Jason Morrison

The plan: get together with friends Thursday night and watch the midnight showing of The Blair Witch Project. Great idea. Except for one thing.

Sold out. Before we even got there.

Luckily though, I learned that we were with a whole other car full of people out of which I knew one person. No problem, I was in a very social mood, because all I usually do on Thursday nights is sit in a cave and pound out issues of the Shrub.

So we decided, since some of us are hungry, why not wander over and perhaps get a bite to eat and some coffee or in my case, a fruit juice of some variety?

So we walked. And chatted. And it was then that I came up with the idea that would turn our night of disappointment upside down-we could make our own Blair Witch Project!

My first idea was to lead the other car full through the woods, getting them hopelessly lost, then kill them off one-by-one. Chuck, however, pointed out the flaw in that idea: how did I know that one of the kids in the movie killed off the others? Keep in mind at this point we had not seen the movie, only commercials, so Chuck was right, I didn't know.

So what was most likely? In real life, which we happened to be in, the most likely killer would be some sort of vagrant. Now, in the middle of Cleveland it's hard to find a forest to get lost in, but it's never hard to round up a vagrant or two. Chuck and I ran up ahead, and sure enough had a likely candidate coaxed out of a dumpster with some candy.

The thing about vagrants is, and I would have never suspected this before the other night, many of them refuse to kill. Despite the fact that they live a strange, transient lifestyle, they quite often Shall Not Kill much like you or I. After tracking down our third vagrant who would not simply follow our plan and stalk, creep out and then kill these kids we had just met, I had my second brainstorm of the night.

The vagrant, who was very much a hobo-type vagrant rather than a downtown vagrant because we found him at a railroad crossing, was sitting eating the candybar we lured him out with. I tested my theory, picking up a stick and poking him in the ribs.

"Grummble!" grumbled the hobo. This was the empirical proof. But now that I knew how to anger the hobo, I had merely to lure the rest of our group over to him and then poke him enough times to get him homicidal. The latter was much easier than the former. After I placed a long series of wicker people, creepy piles of stones, etc., I merely hid near the hobo as they drew near and started poking.

I kept poking him, and poking him, and poking him. My arm got all tired, but it was worth it. He flew into a rage like that chinchilla in sixth grade that the kids would always poke through the bars. I didn't think he could move that fast, because one of his legs looked infected somehow, but he made short work of them. And boy were they scared!

The next day we went to see The Blair Witch Project, but this time bought tickets early. The other car full didn't show up that day. Both of us had learned a lesson on our first trip Thursday night!

Afterword

Now that I have seen the movie, I do realize how far our Blair Witch Project was from the original. I apologize if this article has been misleading in anyway.

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