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Andrew Koenig vs. The Fog

February 26th, 2010 by unkle lancifer · 9 Comments

How sad the news about the suicide of actor ANDREW KOENIG (and so soon after the suicide of fashion designer ALEXANDER McQUEEN, who one would think had everything.) ANDREW was the son of WALTER KOENING (STAR TREK’s Chekov) and many of us grew up knowing him as Mike’s pal “Boner” on GROWING PAINS. By the way, I’ve already noticed some people on line are jumping at the chance to make jokes about this man’s death and it really makes my stomach turn. Maybe the world really is as ugly as ANDREW must have imagined. Wait, I shouldn’t say that, the world isn’t ugly at all, it’s people who sometimes are.

I just want to say to any readers out there of any age who might be finding themselves thinking about suicide, to stop putting energy into that thought RIGHT NOW. I know things can seem bleak at some points in our lives and if you’re dealing with depression, as KOENIG obviously was, it can appear downright impossible. I’m not trying to Wilson Phillips you here but things will change.

Because I can only view the universe through the goggles of the horror genre, let me use THE FOG as an analogy for the times that darkness and despair enters our lives. I am of course referring to JOHN CARPENTER’s classic and not the indefensible remake. (Chin up, RUPERT WAINWRIGHT, I was perfectly courteous toward STIGMATA.) When the fog rolls in uninvited it not only allows worm-faced ghost zombies to knock on our doors but it literally clouds our vision. The everyday things we find comfort in disappear from view. The thing that is imperative to remember is that the fog does indeed roll out of town. It may seem like the world will never go back to normal, but indeed it will. You need to find the nearest lighthouse, climb up on top and wait it out like Stevie Wayne. Don’t be afraid to give one of those ghouls a good whack with their own hook either. You might find your plight lasting longer than the one night of horror suffered the citizens of Antonio Bay but trust me, the ghastlies will at some point exhaust themselves and disperse.

Folks will tell you to seek help from friends and loved ones but most likely, if you’re feeling this way, you’ve already found little solace in that area. My advice is loose yourself or hideout in the arts until the coast is clear. I don’t care if it’s reading, writing, painting, listening to music, playing video games or (the most effective cure all) watching movies. These things will never let you down and they will always be there for you when you need them. It would be irresponsible for me not to also say that professional help is a Google away and that you just might have some bad chemicals doing the Macarena in your brain but in my opinion, they have yet to invent a pill as powerful as art.

Listen I know, as a teenager I remember thinking about telling life “You can’t fire me, I quit!” on several occasions but I’m so glad now that I kept passing those open windows. (There’s a good book to read, THE HOTEL NEW HAMPSHIRE.) If I had bit the big one I would have missed MORRISSEY’s solo career, seven seasons of BUFFY, the re-imaging of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, GOD OF WAR on PS2, HALLOWEEN H20, THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF KAVALIER & CLAY, THE GOON, Kindertrauma.com and oh hells no… MY BLOODY VALENTINE in 3-D!?! Plus a zillion other great things including five cats and Aunt John (I’m sorry I can’t guarantee an Aunt John for everyone who sticks this ride out, I wish I could.)

The point is, things change at the drop of a dime; things won’t always look the way they do now. I know life can seem like an actual horror movie sometimes but maybe if you hang on tight like Stevie, you’ll never have to endure a sequel to what’s currently rocking your boat. Take care of yourself kids, regardless of what you may have heard, every life is equally important and whatever you do, watch out for the fog!

“I don’t know what happened to Antonio Bay tonight. Something came out of the fog and tried to destroy us. In one moment, it vanished. But if this has been anything but a nightmare, and if we don’t wake up to find ourselves safe in our beds, it could come again. To the ships at sea who can hear my voice, look across the water, into the darkness. Look for the fog.”

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9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Amanda By NightNo Gravatar // Feb 26, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    OK, that was moving.

    I saw Andrew on the news today but didn’t recognize him. How horribly sad. I really feel for his family…

    I agree, I’ve seen that Fog that searches to destroy, and yeah, sometimes you have to go all Stevie Wayne on it…

  • 2 jm_kayeNo Gravatar // Feb 26, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    That is the BEST advice concerning depression that I’ve ever heard.  Kudos.

  • 3 micksterNo Gravatar // Feb 26, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    The news of Andrew’s death made me so sad for his family.
    Unkle, you are a treasure and a comfort! I know when things get crazy (which as you know Unk has been often lately) it is comforting to lose yourself in things you enjoy. I know I have a list of movies that I refer to as “comfort movies” and I enjoy combing ebay to find toys and books from my youth.

  • 4 HorrorCatNo Gravatar // Feb 26, 2010 at 6:53 pm

    This post actually made me cry.  Thanks, Unkle Lancifer, for saying just what I needed to hear right now.
     

  • 5 kiddofunkNo Gravatar // Feb 26, 2010 at 8:36 pm

    Unkle, that was an amazingly sweet essay full of great advice.  I’ve been there before too, and it really does get better.  Thank you!

  • 6 ChrisNo Gravatar // Feb 27, 2010 at 10:45 am

    I won’t go into an essay or anything like that reguarding my experiences on this subject, but I will say that yes, art, wether it be a book, a movie, whatever… it does indeed help (with me though, it wasn’t a horror film, but the Warner Bros. cartoon where Daffy Duck played Robin Hood). 

    Thank you for this, Unk.

  • 7 DarkilNo Gravatar // Feb 27, 2010 at 1:32 pm

    Kudos Unk! That’s probably the most moving things anyone could say.  It means a lot to me because I suffered from depression when I was younger and I was fortunate enough that it didn’t overcome me [although I suspect it was as deep as poor Andrew dealt with].  Awesome analogy with The Fog btw.

  • 8 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Feb 27, 2010 at 5:41 pm

    Thanks for all the great comments. I had some second thoughts about posting this one but I figured “the Fog” kind of thrives on people not talking about it. The truth is, that everybody goes through this type of stuff at one point or another. Even those who don’t have a problem with depression have to, at some point in their lives, deal with tragedy or maybe the loss of a loved one.  At those times it feels like we’ll never feel better again and it’s so important to remember that we will.  Also, I think one of “the Fog”‘s greatest tricks is making the sufferer feel like they are the only one that ever felt that way and it’s just not true. Anyway, if I helped anyone out there, I’m really glad and I should also add, if you know somebody who is going through a hard time make sure that they know that you are there for them. 

    Remember, Dr. Lancifer’s prescription: watch two movies and call me in the morning!

  • 9 theverysmallarrayNo Gravatar // Feb 28, 2010 at 1:56 am

    When you have a mental imbalance, you do your best, and sometimes your worst. You do the bare minimum mostly, to keep things straight in your head, and it always seems like you’re piecing things together, like building a rickety bridge until you get to the other side-and then another day begins. I feel for him and his family.

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