Many people would argue that watching cozy murder mysteries is a mindless form of entertainment: an hour or so of clean cut whodunnit with minimal gore and a tight wrap-up. Those people have shortchanged the cozy mystery. Through extensive televisual research, I have come to realize that Jessica Fletcher, Hercule Poirot, and Rosemary & Thyme, just to name a few, have much to teach us about escaping murder. To save your life and your reputation, I have created a primer. I suggest you make a habit of heeding its precautions.
Portman Doe’s Primer for Not Being Murdered
1. When hunting, do not remove your orange safety vest even though it clashes with your heels.
2. Never wear someone else’s uniquely identifiable rain jacket on a dark night while walking down a deserted, rural road. Especially don’t wear the jacket if the owner of said jacket is hated by townsfolk.
3. You can, indeed, be murdered by drowning in a vat of pinot noir. However, in your case, accidental death is more likely.
4. Don’t spend time with people who seem like they might be able to shoot a pistol with their feet. In general, housewives, these people are circus performers so we shouldn’t be hanging around them anyway.
5. If someone owns a trained chimpanzee, then the chimp is likely trained to help commit or cover up a murder. Stay away from chimpanzees.
6. Strychnine is bitter. More bitter than radicchio. Less bitter than my mother-in-law.
7. Don’t get impregnated by the adulterous president of the country club. Next thing you won’t know, you’ll be found in a sand trap. The extreme exfoliation will wreak havoc on your skin, and you’ll look terrible in an open casket.
8. Inviting a murder-solving mystery writer/gardener/spinster/Belgian as a guest in your home is the first step to being murdered.