On Final Destination Moments

Last weekend, my boyfriend B and I were walking through a pretty DC neighborhood on our way to brunch. As we waited to cross the street, a pickup truck made a sloppy left turn. We watched as a bulky piece of equipment as big as an AC unit flew off the back of it, skidding to a stop in the middle of the intersection. If a car had been behind the truck, it would have been a bad scene.

“You see?! You see?! That is a Final Destination Moment!” I yelped, gesturing with my chin because it was too cold to expose my hands to the evils of winter air.

I know Final Destination Moments well. Just in case you are unlucky (lucky?) enough to be unacquainted, here is a quick rundown. In the tragically underappreciated Final Destination film franchise, someone always has a premonition of dying in a horrific way. I’m talking flying off an in-motion rollercoaster or getting flattened by a racecar that is, for whatever reason, sailing through the air. Then the person having the premonition snaps out of it and realizes they can avert disaster just before it happens. They hightail it out of there, always taking a few friends along and consequently saving their lives. But Death is a vengeful SOB (I feel sort of scared writing that and just glanced over my shoulder), so it goes after the people who escaped one by one, in the order they would have died if the premonition had come true. And just to emphasize that there is no escaping Death’s sick yet sort of impressively imaginative clutches, it exacts its will in the most twisted ways. My favorite (errr, you know what I mean) was in Final Destination 3, when two girls got locked in parallel tanning beds and sizzled like the bacon I had this morning. (You know, when I write things like that, my first thought is “what if someone who lost a loved one in a horrible fire reads it? Should I delete it?” But watch the clip and you will realize that it’s exactly what happened.)

Shudder. Dreadful. I’m getting goosebumps.

These movies are so cheesy and but I’m unashamed of my love for them. They exhibit a certain brilliance by focusing on details and buildup to show how a bird landing on a branch three states over can result in you being eaten alive by an escalator, or something. I’m actually a bit disturbed by how much I like them, but that’s a whole other post.

So now when I’m going about my day, just trying to survive, I’m always on high alert. When something happens that seems like it’s a prelude to a convoluted but extraordinarily painful way to die, I’ll tell everyone it’s a Final Destination Moment and we need to GTFO. Here are my three most recent ones:

1. While heading to a B&B for a Thanksgiving stay, B had no issue driving behind trucks topped with what could only have been barely-secured, very sharp and lethal killing material from my nightmares. Like big metal ladders. And lumps of things (probably knives), mysteriously shrouded in tarp that was likely the perfect size to completely obscure our windshield if it were to float away, which would cause us to drive off the road into a ditch where no one would find us for months and our legs would be broken so we couldn’t go for help and we’d have to decide who was going to eat whose body to survive.

As seen in: this Final Destination 2 premonition scene where a huge truck loses its shipment of logs with catastrophic and explode-y results. Why is that truck so big? I’ve never seen a truck that big. Trucks aren’t really that big. Right?

2. When leaving the subway station close to my apartment, this huge bright yellow sign (noted because it would probably look very cinematic with my dark red blood sprayed all over it) starts slowly creaking and swaying in the wind right as I walk under it.

As seen in: the first Final Destination, when Carter is killed BY A SIGN.

3. There is an elevator at work that only has half its lights, so it already makes me suspicious. Recently I was in it and the buttons were beeping like mad even though no one was pressing them. It was obviously a warning of impending, wires-snapping-so-we-plummet-to-our-deaths doom (we were on the 4th floor but whatever, it’s possible).

As seen in: this particularly gruesome Final Destination 2 scene that proves elevators are a dangerous place if you’re interested in keeping your head attached to your body.

These movies are good, uncivilized fun when you want to indulge your morbid side. But in all seriousness, it may serve you well to keep your eyes open to the Final Destination Moments in your own life. Don’t worry about thanking me for saving your life. It’s my pleasure! But if you insist, I accept cash, baby bulldogs, and shopping sprees every season to update my wardrobe.


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