Before I get into the meat of the column, I want to make sure we have a mutual understanding on who/what the Boogeyman is. The Boogeyman isn’t some cool-cat that boogies down at the disco every Saturday night. He’s a monster that revels in frightening defenseless children once the sun goes down and darkness reigns. In other words, the Boogeyman is not John Travolta or Barry Gibb. Although, the image of them coming out from under my bed and doing “The Hustle” is a scary thought.
During my sophomore year of high school, I discovered that the Boogeyman doesn’t exist. I know what you’re thinking, “Wow Dustin. You learned something in high school.” Yes, it’s a Christmas miracle – in February. Every night before sophomore year, terror would leak from my pores, knowing that the Boogeyman was in my room: watching me with his bloodshot eyes, ooze perspiring out of his soggy green skin, his long sharp nails carving my name into whatever surface he can find. Come to think of it, he reminds me a lot of my mother.
I used to clench my stuffed animal hoping it would protect me from the Boogeyman. I love my stuffed animal. He’s a dog I call Peppermint, named after the flavor of toothpaste – true story. Peppermint is my best friend. I know a lot of people think having a stuffed animal as a friend is stupid. In my defense, it’s at least better than having an imaginary friend. Ignoring the fact that they aren’t real, the main problem with an imaginary friend is if you have one for long enough, you’re going to be ridiculed like Manti Te’o.
I really hate the Boogeyman, but at the same time I have to admire him. He’s amazing at what he does. His GPA at Monsters University must have been as high as current gas prices. To be more specific, premium gas and you’re paying with a credit card. The Boogeyman is also great at living in small spaces – he’s probably agoraphobic. And he’s not scared of anything because nothing is scarier than the Boogeyman. All of that makes him horrifying.
So why would our parents tell us these scary stories? The stories about the Boogeyman living in our closets; waiting for the perfect time to grab us in the middle of the night and the only way to defend ourselves is to stay under the covers. I have an answer. It doesn’t matter if you agree or disagree, you know it’s the truth. Our parents made up the Boogeyman so we wouldn’t get out of bed and find them having sex.