Thursday, August 19, 2010

Norman Bates vs Metallica

I've heard that Ronnie James Dio, of Black Sabbath fame, made the claim that the 'horns' gesture (index and pinkie fingers extended with thumb tucking middle and ring fingers down) he originated and is so prevalent in the metal world came from his grandmother. My mom confirms that it's called the 'evil eye'.

I find it humorous that a gesture meant to ward off evil spirits found it's way into the metal music community, but there it is. When we were in Hawaii, I confused 'aloha' hands (thumb and pinkie out, remaining digits down and wrist rotated so the back of the hand faces out) with 'metal' hands, so that every photo taken in paradise looks like I'm front row at an AC/CD concert.

On Monday, we took a family trip to Universal Studios. One of the best parts was the tour of the lots where movies and TV shows are filmed. We rode the tram through old western towns (complete with rain and flash floods), Wisteria Lane from the show Desperate Housewives, and a waterfront facade that was used in both Murder She Wrote, starring Angela Lansbury as well as a scene from Jaws.

As the tram pulled around a corner, we came upon a small string of hotel rooms just in time to witness a man coming out of one of the rooms, with a body wrapped in a shower curtain. It was Norman Bates from the Alfred Hitchcock film, Psycho. After he placed the body in the trunk of a waiting car, he 'saw' us and pulled out a knife. Slowly at first, he approached the tram and then moved into a run as we pulled away.

We occupied the last row in the last car, and I can tell you that he was menacing to the very end. We turned in our seats to see Norman Bates, now stopped in the street but still holding his knife, staring intensely right at us. I looked down at Boy to make sure he wasn't totally freaked out, only to see that he was making a small gesture with his hands.

For a horrible parenting moment, I thought he was flipping Norman the bird - which seemed not only rude but unwise. With a small amount of pride, I realized he was gesture was 'metal' hands. Rock on, Norman Bates!

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