Well, depending on when you read this, it’s either about to be here or perhaps it’s already winding down. Still, you can imagine my excitement every October as Halloween rolls around.
There’s some video up on my channel, Youtube.com/sightunseenpictures from previous Halloweens, and one of the big complaints has always been: How can you scare little kids?! My position on it is, and has always been: If I’m giving out free candy? You gotta earn it. You get scared? You get scared. It isn’t the end of the world.
That said, reminds me of a great Halloween we had when I worked for the Valley Stream Parks Department, and ran their haunted house walk-through attraction. Good times, that event. Me, Erin, Rich, Kevin, Clara, my sis, Joanne, and undoubtedly people I’m forgetting. But anyway, on to the story.
We’ve got this walk-thru set up, with “hallways” formed out of black tablecloths strung over wires, black lights and a lot of neon creepyness, and a couple of cool scares. Rich’s severed head on a dining platter-and how he’d open his eyes and talk, or shriek, or beg for help. Tommy T, in one of my fright masks, “caged” behind a cell made of dowels and 2x4s, painted to look like steel. Somebody in the casket with the fake floor I built, waiting for me to close the lid, so suddenly an empty casket would fly open to expose the hidden ghoul inside. Cheap thrills, but effective.and fun.
So this one Halloween, I’m guiding, and a group of young adults want to walk through. Wasn’t our first older group, and I sure as heck didn’t mind. They were all about 20, and one guy’s girlfriend was, to be honest, a bitch.
“This ain’t scary. This isn’t gonna be scary. I’m not gonna get scared by a bunch of kids,” and so on. To be fair, I could understand why her boyfriend was with her. She was not hard on the eyes. If she had been a mute, I might’ve envied him. But alas, she wasn’t, and so we began, with her commenting negatively about everything.
The coffin got her a little. I sold it dramatically, asked her to get close so she could see what was inside, and threw the lid up fast. She jumped, saw it was empty, and made some snarky remark. Then I slam the lid, she jumps, and BANG! Knowing what was going on, whoever was inside (still trying to remember) throws up that lid and howls.
Score one for the good guys.
We move on. Get to my old dining room table with the leaf pulled out, the tablecloth cut, and Rich’s head sticking out through the platter. He, too, has heard the approaching group and knows what’s up. She jumps again, and now wants out.
So, we meander on past Tommy, who’s got his back against the wall in the “cell”, not moving. That doesn’t really get her (of course), and even I don’t know what Tommy’s planning. But we continue, and go on to the end. Kinda. The group passes my sister, standing by the side exit door (which is hidden behind a 5′ hanging skeleton). Sis offers them candy from the cauldron, as we move on to the door marked EXIT. Which.isn’t. It’s actually the door to a broom closet. So I bid the group good-bye, Little MissCan’t-Be-Scared opens the door, and Kevin Wallace, who hadda be at least six-one, maybe even six-two, jumps out, wearing a different mask, in my full black oilskin duster, wielding a running chainsaw. Before she can back away, Tommy has crawled out of the cage, and is half-hidden by fog from my fog machine. He groans, and lunges, trying to grab the chick’s leg.
Can you say: “Gotcha!”
That chick hit the door by my sis so hard I’m surprised she didn’t break her arm. The skeleton went flying. She disappears out into the parking lot screaming like someone just cut off her finger with a pruning shear. Outside, parents and kids are watching this woman run off.and not stop.
Hysterics. Little Miss Can’t-Be-Scared’s boyfriend comes up, throws his arm around my shoulder, catches his breath long enough to thank me, and swears he’s just had the best Halloween ever.
Okay, so we take a break to reset. As I’m going past the table with Rich’s head sticking through it, someone points out a sizeable puddle on the floor. We check. No, the fog machine isn’t leaking. No, there’s no point-of-origin for this mystery fluid. Hmnnn.
You wanna talk success? I’m sure the folks out at McKamey Manor in San Diego are familiar with mopping up piss, but for a rag-tag group like us to pull off a scare that caused some woman to wet herself?
Not sure, but just may have been one of my best Halloweens ever, too!
Currently listening to: Spellbound by Siouxsie and the Banshees