Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I'll bet living in a nudist colony takes all the fun out of Halloween.

~Hold on, man. We don't go anywhere with "scary," "spooky," "haunted," or "forbidden" in the title. ~From Scooby-Doo~

I do not enjoy scary movies

I spent the first three minutes of the previews of "the Strangers" wringing my hands and muttering things like "Maybe I'll just go hang out with the ticket taker for an hour and a half.. he seemed bored.."

I actually should get a percentage of my money back from "The Hills Have Eyes" since I only really watched the top right hand corner of the screen.

(It's hard to plug your ears and cover your eyes with your own hands at the same time. Plus you have to know when it's safe to watch again)

I'm also not a fan of surprises, I don't like the stress of planning surprise parties.

I don' t like my day to be thrown off from what I planned to do.

I'm not afraid of any bug or animal if I know I'll being presented with it.

Make me wear a boa constrictor as a pashmina? Sure!!

But show me a harmless green snake hidden under a rock and I'll scream for the heavens.

That all being stated, one thing I enjoy every year is creating a haunted house for the trick or treaters :)

(Yes it was pointed out to me how cruel it is that I plot to traumatize people under the age of eight, yet whine if a slasher movie comes on TV.)

But Halloween isn't about me. It's about the kids.

This year, I enlisted some help.

I asked for a pulley device to raise and lower a spider to scare the kids as they got their candy.

Be careful what you wish for.

What I got was described as this...

"Picture a spider as tall as a kitchen table with eight 8 foot long legs. I feel bad because if it works like it's supposed to, if everything goes RIGHT, children will be scarred for life"

We spent a solid 24 hours preparing the house and setting the stage. (well except for that silly 10 hours that I slept... it was Sunday people, of course I slept in.)

At any rate, by 3:30 p.m. the house was enveloped in fake cotton/polyester webbing, scattered with plastic skulls and few real ones and I was ready....

Donning my best "Orkin Man" costume, with my story of infestation all worked out we answered the door to every cute little dressed up kid in the neighbour hood.

The script went a little like this...

Answer the door, explain that the owners of the house had left because of a spider infestation.

Invite them in to pick up the candy scattered through out the house.

Get them past the spider, and finally ask them to pose for a photo, at which point I would video them as we dropped the spider behind them.

Then watch them scream and run for their lives

Yes that was the plan...

This is what really happened.

Answer the door, explain there has been some spiders.

Offer them candy and anti-snake venom medicine.

Remember our theme is spiders.

Tell them about the chewable Benadryl (aka gum-balls) in case of a bite.

Get nervous that people will think I'm actually handing out medication to 4 year olds, so I break character and actually say the "aka gum-balls" part.

Lure them into the kitchen and ask them to pose for the "photo".

Watch through the unfocused screen as the black shadows do not move.

Seriously... if you want kids to behave these days, get them to pose for a photo,

They DO NOT MOVE until the flash has gone off.

Even if a giant 6 foot spider is screaming it's mandibles off as it descends upon them.

They just stand there and smile until the flash happens.

So we add more smoke, and more flashy lights.

I try to convince Mr. Anti-Holiday to hide under the table and grab at the kids feet as they reach for their candy (No dice).

And we perfected the sales pitch.

"Smile for the photo"

Cue spider.

Cue me screaming bloody murder and demanding Adam get it under control. We figure if the kids saw me panic about something, they too would panic.

Unfortunately this also makes me wave the camera around wildly, which in turns creates a useless video.

But it did encourage some kids to jump a little farther and higher.

And then when I realized the kids were actually afraid I would break character again and tell them "Don't worry, it's not real."

(I wouldn't have believed that I did this if there wasn't blurry badly lit video evidence of it. But it does makes sense, I hate being scared, why would I like to scare them?)

All in all I believe they enjoyed it. And we managed to retouch the video to go from black and blurry shadows to slightly less black yet still kinda blurry.

The plans for next year are already being discussed.

No part of those plans involve me being in charge of the camera.

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