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this is halloween: 1

[post one of at least 31 halloween posts in 31 days]

jacktoy.jpgThose of you who have been around here since time began (that would be February 2001) may remember the Lists of Five. There were random little lists that people would send me (before I had comments) and I would post them. Five Songs to Have Sex to; Five Things You Should Never Name Your Children, etc.

Going through old blog stuff is hell on the brain.

Anyhow, I'm bringing back the lists for a Halloween theme. Every day until October 31 I will make at least one Halloween related post. In order to help me along, and to guide me towards what interests you (because this is all about you, you know), I am going to begin a Spooky, Creepy, Crawly Lists of Five.

They can be five of anything: five favorite monsters, five scariest stories, five haunted houses, five halloween costumes that suck, five things not to be in a trick or treat bag, five movies with vampires, five cartoon Halloween episodes, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

I've given you enough ideas so that the theme is slightly vague (to get a wide variety of responses) and slightly specific (so that no one would submit, say, five vegetables that go good with beer). You're all smart, no need to explain in great detail.

So, there you have it. I will check this post every day for new lists appearing and will point back to it often to remind you that it is your duty to participate in every single dumb poll type thing I force upon you.

But who doesn't love Halloween? Who doesn't love a chance to spread stories of mutated corpses and urban legends around? Oh yes, the legends. That's to get you started if you can't think of your own topic. Five favorite urban legends.

Links helpful where applicable; don't be afraid to expound on your lists and choices.


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» Hitting the Links from Jennifer's History and Stuff
There's one in every family. She is mentioned here as well...looks like Bustamante will be withdrawing. I can totally relate to poor Ruby. I solve the problem by not drinking coffee. Al made it home safely, even though he's yella.... [Read More]


Five things that have no right to be given as treats:

(Based on my actual childhood traumas)

1. Oranges.
2. Peanuts in the shell.
3. Last year's Christmas candy.
4. McDonald's gift certificates.
5. Melted chocolate bars.

5 politically correct family-friendly costume opportunities:

5) Elaborately Dressed Wisher of No Specified Will (formerly known as Elaborately Dressed Wisher of Good Will, but that was considered offensive to those who only wanted to be wished bad will.) ((formerly formerly known as Gender-Unspecified Flying Creature With Wand, but that was considered offensive to persons without wings, and also made reference to a wand, which could encourage children to practice witchcraft, read Harry Potter, or listen to Enya)) [originally known as Fairy Princess, but that was just wrong for obvious reasons]

4) Fully Alive Human Impersonating Vitality-Impaired Being With No Reference To Whether Or Not Said Being Exists: (formerly known as Vitality-Impaired Being, but that was disrespectful to those who believed strongly that Vitality-Impaired Beings do not exist) [originally known as Ghost, but schools kept calling parents all the time over that one]

3) Four-Legged Creature With No Specified Temperment Or Association With Omens [originally known as Black Cat, but too many people associated cats with ear mites...it led to widespread mangling of children's ears. not to mention the whole association with witches and bad luck.]

2) Winged Deity Of No Specified Religious Affilation: [originally known as angel]

1) Ted Rall: A friend to all children. :P

Heh. That was good, Stacey. Very good.

A possibly contentious list:
Top 5 Scariest Songs (Musical Pieces?) for Halloween
5. Night on Bald Mountain (Mussorgsky)
4. Toccata and Fugue in D Minor (Bach)
3. Signs soundtrack (James Newton Howard)
2. Vertigo soundtrack (Bernard Herrmann)
1. Psycho soundtrack (Bernard Herrmann)

(Oooh, I left off Danny Elfman. That'll probably start a fight.)

Five must-watch Halloween movies:
1. Nightmare Before Christmas
2. Batman (the first one), just for the darkness and cool costumes
3. Nightmare on Elm Street 3, the best of the series, imo
4. The Ring, 'cause it's appropriately creepy
5. Psycho, a horror classic

Five things that will get your house egged if you give them out on Halloween:
1. Spare change (I knew a guy who did this every year when I was little -- dimes and nickels, maybe 3-4 coins)
2. Candy corn (Lewis Black said it best -- this stuff tastes like crap)
3. Pretzels/granola/apples/anything healthy like that
4. McDonald's gift certificates
5. Saf-T-Pops -- unless the trick-or-treater is 3, he/she will just be insulted. We can handle a lollipop with a normal stick, honest.

5 scariest moments of my life (all true)

5. My daughter Miranda was about one and a half years old and she disappeared without a trace. Looked in the home, got in my truck and circled the entire neighborhood two or three times, couldn't understand how a child could just go missing like that from inside the house and slip by the only exit outside without me noticing. I found her sleeping in a box full of blankets in the closet.

4. I woke up one night when I was about six and something with huge reflective eyes was standing in the room. Another time in my life were I was so scared I couldn't move.

3. I was at home and I was about 10 years old and I saw this hand move in a dark room next to my bedroom in the basement. My brother brings this up every time I see him which is about every three years.

2. The time I was living on a 40 acre guest ranch and something dropped on top of my roof with a loud boom at 3:00 a.m. and walked around a while. I was horrified to the point where I couldn't even move. I lived in the middle of nowhere and something was on my roof walking around.

1. When I was at my girlfriend (at the time) Laura's house and little balls of light appeared out of nowhere and flew around her apartment. Classic poltergeist activity, scared the hell out of me and I still dream about it all of the time.

Five things that scared me most as a child

1) under the bed (once in bed I would never leave it until morning, convinced the minute I put a foot on the floor, I would be grabbed and pulled under)

2) the closet left open (I was adament... it had to be closed ALL THE WAY)

3) cricket noise (I begged my mom if I could watch some old schlocky movie about giant grasshoppers ... I watched as they climbed up skyscrapers and snatched fair damsels from their dressing tables) the movie sound track was the same noise as crickets..I was convinced that night the giant grasshoppers were just outside my window to feast on me (this would have been Granada Hills California 1960 or so... all orange groves and open fields...loads of crickets

4) Mary Worth...no not the old comic strip..the slumber party game one played to terrify yourself and friends..going into the bathroom with the door closed and lights off and shutting your eyes as you chanted for her to show herself in the mirror and your friends swore you'd see her draped with a bunch of dead babies coming next for you!

5) night terrors.... worst than nightmares... have had them occassionally all my life, more so as a child.

Several of the above I've incorporated into a few horror short stories.

Ah! Michele, here's another suggestion... you might want to run a "best of" Halloween short story contest. :-)

My five favorite zombie-related movie deaths:

5) BIOZOMBIE (Hong Kong) - When the guy who runs the sushi bar in the mall gets bitten and turns into a zombie. That's just funny.

4) DAWN OF THE DEAD - When Roger gets bitten and ends up slowly turning into "one of them," forcing Peter to sit with him until he turns and then shoot him in the face once he "comes back." (This counts as both a zombie killing a person and a person killing a zombie.)

3) DAY OF THE DEAD - When Rhodes gets pulled in half and yells at the zombies, "Choke on 'em!", referring to his own spilled guts. Legend has it that the actor improvised that line on the spot.

2) ZOMBIE (Dario Argento) - When a zombie fights a shark underwater. I don't remember if the zombie wins or not, but for chrissakes, a zombie fights a shark underwater. That can't be beat.

1) DEAD ALIVE - The entire "lawnmower on a chest harness" sequence. When the guy ends up calf-deep in zombie blood and dead tissue, limbs and heads and eyeballs flying left and right... wow. That's all I can say. Wow.

Five Reasons Not To Carve A Pumpkin

5. Pumpkin guts.
4. Five pound pumpkin dropped on foot results in "here you go, gimp" replies to "trick or treat!"
3. Impossible to get Hillary's face just right.
2. Do you really LIKE the nickname "Stubs"?
1. What if when the aliens finally show up, they're all from the planet Jack O'Lanternia?

5 Costumes Seen In Greenwich Village Halloween Parades:

1. Man dressed as spitting image of Imelda Marcos
2. Leather boy
3. King of Pot
4. Flowers
5. Ru Paul

P.S. to Scott H.: You so forgot Peer Gynt.

Scariest nightmares I've ever had:

1. Having to walk barefoot across an East Texas field covered with fire ant hills.

2. My 8 year old sister found out she was going to hell and cheerfully packed her bags, in denial that she was about to spend eternity in flaming torment. (I was ten at the time and a regular Sunday school student)

3. I entered inventory tags into the computer, one after another, all night long. Then when I woke up, I realized I did all that work and wasn't going to get paid!

4. I need to go to the bathroom and every one I find is out of order, filthy, or some configuration that is anatomically impossible for me.

5. I'm talking to my grandmother and I suddenly remember she's dead.

5 group costume ideas:

1. Prize Patrol: All but one dressed in suits, and carrying flowers, balloons, giant check, and camera. One person in a bathrobe screaming "OH MY GOD!"

2. The Democratic presidential candidates.

3. Michael Moore. (Face it, it will take more than one person.)

4. Nobel peace prize winners Yasser Arafat, Jimmy Carter, and Kofi Annan.

5. The Vast Right Wing Conspiracy

Top 5 Simpsons Halloween bits (your mileage may vary):

5) I know what you did-diddly-id last summer


4) Homer3

"mmmm... unprocessed fish sticks"

3) Time and Punishment

"This is indeed a disturbing universe"

2) The Shinning

"No TV and no beer make Homer something something"


1) The Raven

"Quoth the Raven: 'Eat my shorts'"

My Granddaddy Painter hated "trick or treaters" so he would give them a great big scoop of tapioca pudding in their bag.

Now that is inspired and evil.

My Five Fave "Forever Knight" Episodes (season one comes out on DVD this month!)

Ashes to Ashes
Fate Worse Than Death
A More Permanent Hell
Be My Valentine

5 local Halloween Houses - mind you, it will take me another couple of weeks to take all the pictures - the last one doesn't finish decorating until Halloween Eve - which is redundant.
Here is a link to #5:

Five creepiest crawlies:

1. centipedes (all those legs!)
2. snakes (the fuckers got no legs!)
3. scorpions
4. giant spiders (I expect nightmares after Return of the King brings Shelob to life)
5. ticks (ewwwwwwwww!)

top five candies that were still left in my trick-or-treat bag when Christmastime rolled around:

5. Licorice anything.

4. Green hard candies

3. Those tiny, stingy cellophane packets that had like three candy corns in them

2. Those weird, dried-out peanut butter taffy things that only appeared at hallowe'en and which you could buy in bulk for super-cheap.

1. The "fruit leather" the hippie family down the street insisted on handing out.

actually, pretty much anything that wasn't chocolate, or at least wasn't a mini-me version of "normal" candy got left in my bag...most years, my mom wound up throwing out most of my hallowe'en candy because I didn't eat it. funny, I never got the "starving kids in China" lecture from her about that like I did when I wouldn't eat squash or veal or whatever food was grossing me out that particular week.