Don’t fear the reaper, but do fear drunk girls with hammers

I wonder if anyone else has a song that causes you something of a post-traumatic reaction when you hear it? Unpleasant though it would be, I don’t really count having to listen to the same song over and over for hours in a car, as one Rockin’ the Suburbs listener endured.

A little while back, I appeared on a Rockin’ the Suburbs episode called “More Rock, Less Talk.”

Patrick said he was going to kick things off with an old Blue Oyster Cult song. Now, I knew he wasn’t going to play their megahit “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper,” just because that wouldn’t be in character. But nonetheless, my heart started beating a little bit faster.

You see, that song will forever be associated in my mind with a crazy, scary and—at least in hindsight—somewhat humorous incident when an extremely drunk young woman pounded on our front door in the middle of the night demanding to use our bathroom.

It’s sometime in the winter, not long after an ice storm. (You’ll see why I remember that shortly.) My wife and I are sound asleep upstairs, and so is our daughter—who is probably only 3 or 4 at the time—when I hear our front door knocker pounding very loudly. I head downstairs, half asleep and thinking I should find something to protect myself with. I think I settled on a fireplace poker.

Highly intimidating, no doubt.

Looking through the peep hole and talking through the front door, I ask what this person wants. In the background, I hear “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper” blasting away from the stereo of a car parked halfway in our driveway. The person turns out to be a young woman who thinks it’s perfectly acceptable to knock on a stranger’s door in the middle of the night so she can pee in comfort. Who knows why she picked our house.

So I tell her, no way, go pee in the bushes, or something along those lines except less polite. I’m basically shouting to be heard over the pounding on the door and that song blaring from her car windows, which she has left wide open despite the cold.

Then I realize she has picked up a hammer I left outside the door that day when I was whacking away at ice from a storm that had thickly coated our steps and walkway. (Residents of the D.C. ‘burbs know what I’m talking about.)

She is beating on the door with a hammer!

It’s at this point I decide it’s time to call the police, who respond so fast that the song is still playing when they get there.

I looked up “(Don’t Fear) the Reaper,” and it turns out that it’s only about four minutes long, but it seemed like it just went on and on during this disconcerting encounter. Once the police arrived, they hauled away the door pounder, who had caused less damage than I expected, moved her car out of our driveway, and turned it (and the stereo) off.

I don’t remember anything about the kind of car it was or what the woman looked like all these years later, but I can still picture the weird scene in my head and hear that song providing the eerie soundtrack.

Dan Gursky

The 2017 version of BOC kicking it live:

And another version you might be familiar with:

If only that was a hammer in Will’s hand instead of drumstick!

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