Micah and Katie are an attractive young couple living in a nice duplex in San Diego. Katie is a graduate student while Micah works as a day trader. They seem to have an idyllic life with one small problem: Katie is being haunted by a demon, and has been since she was 8 years old. So once they start hearing bumps in the night, Micah does what any loving, caring, nurturing boyfriend would do . . . he buys a new video camera in order to record the hauntings.
They eventually call in a psychic, who tells them he only deals with ghosts, not demons. He gives them the name of a demonologist who can help them with their problems. They chose to ignore the psychic’s advice and instead, Micah does everything he can to agitate and anger the demon into action. Doors start opening and closing on their own. Katie stands at the edge of the bed for hours, or sleepwalks into the cold night. A Oujia Board is manipulated by invisible hands to send a chilling warning to Katie. Micah can’t help but think how cool this all is to watch on replay the next morning.
Soon the couple are beset by continual nights of horror. The actions of the demon become more pronounced and more violent towards Katie. Micah promises to protect her and his home, but the only weapon he is willing to wield is the camera. He takes no tangible action to actually deal with the demon or protect his girlfriend, but likes to pretend he is “helping” with mocking derision, empty promises, and futile actions.
They break down and call the demonologist, but he is out of town. The psychic returns briefly to inform them there is nothing he can do to help them out of their predicament. They were warned, but they took too long to respond to the warnings. Things end badly.
The part of Katie was played by the City of Pacifica. Micah represents the City Council and their band of defenders. The demon? Financial ruin. The psychic? The Urban Land Institute. The California Center for Land Recycling. Perhaps every consultant who has told the city what it needs to do to avoid dire financial devastation and was ignored. Perhaps every citizen who was labeled a “rogue” or a “bully” or one of those people who show up to City Council meetings, beseeching the City Council to do something more than just document our demise.
A horror story, with a chilling conclusion. A parable, about the brutal consequences of deliberate ignorance in the face of great danger. Just in time for Halloween . . .
posted by Jeffrey W Simons