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Published:May 9th, 2011 09:20 EST
Is Criminal Minds Destroying my Sanity?

Is Criminal Minds Destroying my Sanity?

By Donna Cavanagh

I hate watching TV with my husband at night. He likes to turn on Criminal Minds before we go to bed. He falls asleep in the middle of the show, and I am left awake and scared out of my wits.  I know I should change the channel, but that show just draws me in.

In addition to the lack of sleep that this show produces, I also have developed a keen sense of paranoia. Allow me to give you an illustration.  Not too long ago, my husband decided to go to bed early because he had umpired a game after work, and he was beat. The dogs followed him upstairs to our room.  My daughter was on her cell phone in her bedroom.   I was alone downstairs in the family room, so I decided to lock the backdoor and head up to the kitchen to make lunches for the following day. I was just bopping around, singing and dancing as I sloshed mustard on sandwiches when I heard the backdoor alarm beep and the alarm voice bellow, "Backdoor open". 

"Hm, that is strange," I said aloud. Yes, I said this aloud because if it was a burglar coming through my door, I wanted him or her to know someone was awake in case they didn`t hear the dulcet tones of my singing voice.  I called out my husband`s name, but still got no response. Then, I saw the dogs in the family room staring into the laundry room where the backdoor is. 

A feeling of utter panic set in.  I grabbed my butter knife which was still covered in mustard and ran up to my daughter`s bedroom and said in a whisper,

"Is Dad still asleep?"

"Yeah, I guess. What are you doing with a butter knife?"

"Stay in your room and lock the door. Be ready to call the police."

"What are you talking about?"

I didn`t waste time answering her question. I pulled her door shut and tiptoed back downstairs.  I peeked down the steps of the family room and saw a shadowy figure. The dogs were still down there staring into the laundry room. Then, the figure came out, and I was about to leap when I saw that it was my husband. And he said, 

"What are you doing with a knife?"

To which I responded -- actually, I can`t tell you what I responded because my response involved a lot of the "F"  word. 

"You thought I was a burglar and you were going to come after me with a butter knife? What were you  going to do -- mayonnaise me to death?"

Again, I let him have it with a few expletives. I truly did not think this was the time to be poking fun at me. 

"It`s mustard. Why the hell didn`t you answer me?  I thought you were asleep, and I called your name. I heard the alarm."

"LuLu wanted to go out so I took her out the backdoor and Frankie followed. I guess you didn`t hear me over your singing."

I guess he was just in the mood to be cursed at. I admit that in hindsight, I should have realized the dogs were not barking and the alarm was disabled after it initially sounded, so someone had to know the code,  but I was not thinking about logical explanations. I was thinking about the one hundred or so Criminal Minds episodes where the serial killer gets in the house by the backdoor and slaughters everyone.   Anyway, this entire incident occurred because that show is the last show I watch before I go to sleep. This wouldn`t happen if I got control of the remote and put on shows like I love Lucy or Family Guy. No, I watch shows that star predatory monsters whose only goals are to kill innocent people.

So, my husband and daughter enjoyed zinging me with butter knife jokes for a few days and then we settled back into our normal routine. For the record, no one remarked at how brave I was to check out the situation while protecting my family as best I could with the tools I had at my disposal. I gather I would have looked tougher if I grabbed steak knife or perhaps the ginsu knife. Honestly, I thought about the ginsu knife,  but I didn`t know if human blood and guts would ruin it, and I really love that knife.

Did I learn anything from this experience? Yes. I learned my family sucks in tense situations, and that butter knives are not a great weapon in the fight against crime.  Oh well, I guess I will have to start cutting my sandwiches with a hatchet.  That should keep criminals away.