Are you aware of the problem with halloween? Yes. That’s exactly what I’m talking about: the blow-up ghosts, the animatronic witches, the molded plastic bats. From some time in late September to the beginning of November, your average American street looks like a cheap plastics factory crossed with a moldy land-fill. None of it is scary; all of it is trash.
So, come late October, what should a right-thinking™ citizen do? One option is just to ignore halloween. You can then spend your time doing something worthwhile: reading The Flying News, eating doughnuts, or digging a bomb shelter in your backyard.
If this doesn’t appeal to you, then do something really scary. What? Well, what really scares people is something that actually poses a threat. Since your average five-year-old knows that plastic witches aren’t really a danger, instead of visiting the plastic store, go to the power tool store. Buy a bulldozer or something, attach some flame-throwers; and when halloween rolls around, have the time of your life chasing your neighbors down the street.
The problem, of course, with this idea is that a flaming bulldozer is frightening, but it doesn’t have the eerie, haunted, uncanny air that we associate with college football. If you want not just to frighten your neighbors, but to frighten them in the proper manner, you need something better. We suggest that you eschew the blood-n-guts™—that might make your neighbors vomit on your porch, but it isn’t scary in the right sort of way. If you really want to make halloween scary like it’s supposed to be, you want to release some large snakes in your yard. As they slither invisibly through the leaves, they’ll give the neighborhood a real fright. Just make sure that you aren’t strangled by one of them as you hand out candy.
“Pirate’s Ghost,” by Howard Pyle. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.