Day 620: Shots in the dark

I’m going to take a shot in the dark, to start off this post.


That’s one of our cats, Oscar. I wasn’t sure whether I had him in frame, as I was taking that shot.

Last night, my boyfriend Michael told me that my son, Aaron, had shot this at him, darkly: “I’m not feeling that great. I think I might be getting sick.”

I’m going to take a shot in the dark, right now, and guess that Aaron is going to ask to stay home from school, after he wakes up, soon, in the less-dark morning.

Yesterday,  it was dark during the afternoon. I took a shot at one of these, in the cafeteria in the hospital where I work:


I’ve never seen that kind of shot before, have you?

Way back when, in ’67,  I had a conversation with one of my parents’ friends about A Shot in the Darkthe second Pink Panther movie.


(image found here)

That’s a funny shot of Peter Sellers and Elke Sommer there, in the dark.

Actually, when I was talking to my parents’ friend, Abe, in 1967, I thought I was having a conversation with him about a different movie, which I had just seen.


(image found here)

Wait Until Dark — starring Audrey Hepburn and Alan Arkin (whom I had never seen before that film) — scared the bejeesus out of me.  Soon after I saw it, when I was talking to Abe, I asked him what he thought of that movie.

Or, I THOUGHT I was asking Abe what he thought of that movie.

Abe’s response really surprised me. I expected him to say, “That movie scared the bejeesus out of me!” (or words to that effect). Instead, Abe, got a big smile on his face and said,

That movie was hilarious!  What a FUNNY movie! I couldn’t stop laughing.

… or words to that effect.

I’m going to take a shot in the dark here: I assume I’m not the only one who has been communicating with somebody and then has this thought:

WHAT?!? That’s not the reaction I expected!  WHAT IS GOING ON HERE???? Is one of us crazy?  Is it me??!??

I didn’t know what to say to Abe. I took a shot in the dark, back then, with this response:

Well … I guess the plot was … sort of far-fetched … I suppose.

And I got out of that conversation as soon as possible.

Would anybody like to take a shot in the dark about why I’m writing about this, now?

In case you don’t want to take a shot at that question,  I’ll tell you. After I had that conversation with Abe, and as I tried to make meaning of that encounter in my mind, I realized what had happened.

Instead of asking Abe this question, “Did you see Wait Until Dark?” I realized that I had asked my parents’ old friend, “Did you see A Shot In The Dark?”

I was horrified.  And that feeling lasted a lot longer than my scared reaction to Wait Until Dark.

For YEARS I felt bad about that encounter. Every time I thought about it, I’d cringe.

Personally, I find that a lot scarier than any scary movie. Why, oh why, did I spend so much time worrying about that simple mistake?  A mistake I made when I WAS ONLY THIRTEEN* YEARS OLD?!!!?

I’m going to take some shots in the dark, now, about why I felt shot, so painfully and frequently, by that memory.

  1. I don’t like to make mistakes.
  2. I really, really, really, really don’t like miscommunication.


I just checked in with my son, who is waking up. He didn’t say anything about feeling bad or about staying home from school today. Another mistake on my part! I’m so glad I’ve learned to forgive myself, so much better, these days.

What other shots did i want to take in this post today?

I ran a therapy group at work, yesterday evening, where people talked about worry. IMG_8951

Afterwards, I took these shots in the dark:




I’ve read lots of great quotes by Audrey Hepburn, who was terrorized (and almost shot?) by Alan Arkin in “Wait Until Dark.” Let’s give Audrey Hepburn this parting shot:

Pick the day. Enjoy it – to the hilt. The day as it comes. People as they come… The past, I think, has helped me appreciate the present – and I don’t want to spoil any of it by fretting about the future.

And, before I publish these shots in the dark, how about some music?

(Theme song from “A Shot in the Dark,” by Henry Mancini, found here on YouTube)

Hmmmm. While it was fun hearing and seeing the opening shots from A Shot in the Dark, here’s the musical shot (also by Henry Mancini) I really want here and now.

(Youtube video of Pink Panther Theme found here)

Thanks to Abe, Peter Sellers, Elke Sommer, Audrey Hepburn, Alan Alda (oooops! Alan Arkin!), Henry Mancini, my son, people who work in groups,  and to you — of course! — for taking a shot at this post, today.

* I was actually 14 years old in ’67, but who’s counting?

Categories: Nostalgia, personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , | 21 Comments

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21 thoughts on “Day 620: Shots in the dark

  1. It’s easy to be intimidated while conversing in adult subject matter with one’s friend’s parents, Ann, and I think your slip of the tongue in the movie title was likely a case of Abe-anxiety. And the need to think of yourself ready to socialize in those circles could lead to the lingering sense of embarrassment. So there’s my armchair diagnosis — or extension of my system on your actions, if you will. In any case, I’m glad to see they’re offering healthy shots in the office cafe, my friend. Looks delicious, but not quite as alluring as potato lattke.

  2. 13 is such a self sensitive age ….. makes me cringe just thinking about that time in my life!

  3. Just like the used the original “Pink Panther” theme for the Pink Panther cartoon, they used “A Shot in the Dark” theme for The Inspector cartoon only they used a real cheesy sounding Farfisa organ. I once was in a garage band that did it as a cover.

  4. All through this post I had the Bon Jovi song “Shot through the Heart” playing in my head, with my mind playing the lyrics as “Shot in the Dark…and your to blame…” and knowing that something wasn’t right, and not figuring it out until the end. I’d much rather have the quick, somewhat too quick mind of a 13 year old, than the more frustrating/forgetful mind of a 40+ year old!

  5. Shots in the dark can be quite scary. I take them every now & again. I think it lessens the worry. Because once it’s said or done – it’s said or done.
    The tuna salad shot is a first for me too.
    The Fenway shots in that dark are always awesome! 🙂

  6. Now that I’ve read your post, Ann, I realize that I’ve been mistaken about something for quite some time. I thought the first time I ever saw Alan Arkin in a movie was when he played the deaf mute in “The Heart is a Lonely Hunter.” But that’s impossible. That came out in 1968 – one year after “Wait Until Dark” (1967). Yes, that film also scared the heck out of me. Alan Arkin was a delightful psycho in that film and Audrey Hepburn showed a lot of spunk in taking him down.

    I do love “A Shot in the Dark.” It was one of my favorite Peter Sellers movies. It’s the only Pink Panther movie that doesn’t have the cartoon character – the Pink Panther – in it. (Or, I might be mistaken.). 😉

    Love your reminiscing on some of my favorite films.

    • When I write these posts, Judy, I often find that I’ve been mistaken about some details or another. I like the word “spunk” for Audrey’s Hepburn character. It is safe to say that you have spunk and I do, too? Thanks for your lovely visit.

  7. I’ve often wondered why such foolish errors stay with us. It is clear though that they rarely stay with the other person… so we should let go… but it’s so hard…

  8. I remember both movies well, and my memory of “Wait Until Dark” is seeing it with my cousin and at some key point she screamed out loud only adding to my terror. LOL! That was probably the first movie I can recall seeing with that extreme level of suspense. But your main point…I surely relate to what you’re saying about letting go of harsh criticism and personal judgement when it’s safe to say that we do our best to communicate clearly and we all make mistakes. Let’s rationalize this habit as at least being one step up from never reflecting on our actions and perhaps continuing to make the same mistakes? That’s my version of giving myself a break…because I’m still rather self-critical. 🙂

    • Thanks so much for the reflections in this comment. I really appreciate how you give yourself a break; I hope you do it often (and criticize yourself less).

  9. I was 12 and yet, saw these movies. I liked the “Pink Panther” movies, I also felt Audrey Hepburn did a fine job in “Wait Until Dark” and always felt Peter Sellers was a ‘hoot’ in any of his movies, but I remember “A Shot in the Dark.”
    Ann, lastly, really liked your own ‘shots’ or photos of your therapy white board, your cat’s back and the tuna salad ‘shot.’ I take mis-communication problems personally, too. I have really sometimes not allowed a subject to drop, trying to figure out the other’s point of view, which my brothers now sometimes will say, “Drop it, Robin.” They would rather go forward, without understanding where we got off track and out of sorts. Oh well! (That’s their problem, I try to think in my mind!)

    • What a great quality, Robin, trying to figure out somebody else’s point of view! And what a great quality, too, giving me such kind feedback about my photos. Great to see you here, as always.

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