Are Dead People Voyeurs?

CEB274F9-BD76-4B99-A978-93702D2271F0I was watching a TV show the other night when one character said to the other, “You’re father would be so proud of you. I bet he’s looking down from heaven right now with a big smile on his face.”

Yeah, right. Do people really belief that their dearly departed friends and relatives are looking down — or looking up, as the case may be — at them to see what they’re up to?

“Oh my God, Dan, that was the best sex ever. I bet your mom is looking down on you from heaven with a big smile on her face.” Oh wait, maybe it was Dan’s father who was looking up at him from hell and masturbating while watching Dan having a hot time with that blonde he picked up at that party. Hmm. Do the souls of dead people masturbate?

Do people really believe that the souls of their deceased loved ones are spending their days in the afterlife spying on their earthbound family members and pals? Do they do it all the time, or do they only do it when something extraordinarily good or bad happens?

And where’s the line? Are there boundaries, safe zones, where you can escape the prying dead eyes of the deceased? Like the bathroom, maybe. Is my mother watching me sitting on the toilet taking a dump and beaming about what a big boy I am?

Is there a statute of limitations? For example, are these dead voyeurs watching over us forever? Or are we sentenced to a finite number years after their death to be subjected to their constant observation? And how large is this circle of voyeurs? Just your parents or does it go back multiple generations and include more watchers than your immediate family and closest friends?

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m an atheist and I don’t believe in the notion of an afterlife. But I’m genuinely interested in hearing from those who are believers. Do you believe that the souls of your deceased loved ones — your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and closest friends — are looking down at you, watching what you’re doing day in and day out?

I’m not trying to be an asshole. I really want to know what you believe. Tell me in the comments or write your own post and link it back to this post.

Thanks!

FFfPP — A Room With a View

img_2413

I don’t consider myself to be voyeur. It’s just that I don’t have much to do these days. My TV is broken and my computer stopped functioning a long time ago. So basically, all I have to do with my time is to read…and peer.

I live across from a huge apartment complex. I have a telescope from my stargazing days, but instead of focusing on the night sky, I aim it at the apartment building across the street.

During the day there’s really not that much to see. People mostly keep their drapes drawn. But every once in a while my patience pays off and I see something interesting, like the woman who dries her clothes on a drying rack on her balcony. She often hangs her laundry out to dry when she’s just wearing a bra and panties. Nice.

But it’s at night, when people have their lights on, that the real shows begin. There’s the husband who’s always beating his wife, the lesbian couple who rarely draw the curtains when in their bedroom, or the guy who stands on his balcony and masturbates.

Who needs a TV or a computer when you have a telescope?

(199 words)


Written for this week’s Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner from Roger Shipp. Photo credit: Michael (Black) Ritter pexels-photo-41506.

Now I’ll Never Know

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not a voyeur. It’s just that when I walk my dog at night, I can see through the windows of people’s homes and apartments into rooms lit up by interior lights. But there was only one particular window that got — and held — my attention.

I never met the girl in the window in real life. Just in my fantasies. And now she’s gone. Maybe she moved out. Maybe she got married or moved in with her boyfriend. Maybe something bad happened to her. Maybe she died. Now I’ll never know.

I always saw her when I was walking my dog for his last walk of the day, usually between 9:30 and 10:00. She was always sitting in front of her laptop, facing the window, a small lamp on her right. What was she doing? Now I’ll never know.

Maybe she was a student doing homework. Maybe she was no longer a student and was working on an assignment for her job. Maybe she was an aspiring author and was writing her novel. Maybe she was a blogger crafting a post. Or maybe she was watching porn on her computer. Now I’ll never know.

I counted on seeing her each night. I only ever saw her face and her hair, as the rest of her was hidden behind her open laptop. She had, as far as I could tell from the other side of the street, a pretty face. Her hair was reddish blonde, or that’s what it looked like in the glow of her laptop’s screen and the light from the lamp next to her. Now I’ll never know.

I am reasonably certain that she never noticed me and my dog. The sidewalk right across the street from her building was tree-lined and rather dark at night. Although there was that one time when she seemed to glance up from her laptop and appeared to look out the window and directly at me. But she didn’t respond when I waved at her. Did she see me? Now I’ll never know.

I had seen her almost every night for nearly a year. I became obsessed with her. She inhabited my dreams. She was the leading lady of my fantasies. I had to somehow find the courage to meet her. I was sure that if we ever met, she would feel about me as I felt about her. Now I’ll never know.

One day very soon I would call up to her from the street right below her window and introduce myself to her. Maybe she would invite me up to her apartment and offer me a drink. Maybe tea or coffee. Maybe a beer or a glass of wine. Maybe she’d offer me something to eat. Maybe we’d hold hands, embrace one another. Now I’ll never know.

They say he who hesitates is lost. I hesitated. And now she’s gone. Now I’ll never know.


Disclaimer. This post was not originally written for today’s one-word prompt. But when I saw that the word was “homage,” I thought this would be a good homage to those who hesitated, missed an opportunity, and now will never know.