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Posts tagged: Halloween

Is 1978’s “Halloween” still scary?

As I remember it, the first Ebert and Siskel show I saw featured reviews of the movie “Halloween.”

Both of the film critics seemed to think it was pretty scary. And so I went to see it during my short work stint in San Angelo, Texas.

I agreed with the critics. Pretty darned scary.

I remember a guy sitting in the row ahead of me was almost out of his mind with fright, shouting instructions to the babysitter up on the screen.

Quite a few years passed and my wife, no fan of horror flicks, expressed a willingness to see it. So we watched it one Halloween.

Only it really didn't seem all that scary. Maybe because it now came off as a bit predictable, even if you had not seen it before.

Sort of sad, really. A bit like watching Willie Mays stumbling in the Mets outfield during a World Series long after he should have retired.

Anyway, I found myself thinking about “Halloween” this afternoon when I heard the theme coming over the sound system at Rosauers.

How the mighty have fallen.

So let me ask you. Did you ever find that movie scary?

It’s on

Heard “Monster Mash” playing in a store this afternoon.

It momentarily took my mind off the fact that there were not World Series games this weekend because apparently television executives get to decide that.

Halloween costume idea

You could be a personality-plus “Up With People” kid from Expo '74.

Sure, it might take some explaining. But think of it as an ice-breaker.

Did anyone say “tricks or treats”?

Besides the kids in this vintage “Peanuts” special, that is.

Didn't everyone say “trick or treat”?

An early Halloween costume idea

If you made it roomy enough, you might not have to worry about arm holes.

One more Halloween story

The doorbell rang and a Spokane guy named Roger hurried downstairs to dispense candy.

He had a mouth full of cookie.

When Roger opened the door, he looked down and saw a tiny scarecrow.

The scarecrow looked up and saw that the man's mouth was full of something.

In a shocked tone, the little boy asked, “Are you eating my trick or treat?”

Roger assured the scarecrow that he was not. And to thank the kid for the laugh, he gave him a grande serving of candy.

A CdA Halloween princess with attitude

Coeur d'Alene's Maggie Bennett shared a story.

“For the last 25 years, we have decorated our porch on Halloween with a Scary Guy made from an ugly mask and various clothing stuffed with newspaper. He sits on a bench with pumpkins, a spider and webs.

“This year a 5-year-old princess with blond ringlets came up on the porch with parents and siblings to trick-or-treat. I asked her how she liked my Scary Guy.

“With her arms folded over her chest, she said, 'I don't like him at all and I think you are mean!'”

The child's parents lurched into damage-control mode. And perhaps the fact that her bag of treats was already pretty full empowered the princess to speak freely.

But Bennett was impressed.

“At least she came up on the porch to tell me what she thought. Some kids just walk away rather than take the chance that Scary Guy will get them.”

Hasn’t had a trick-or-treater in 15 years

That's Howard Bisbee's report.

He lives in a log home a few miles outside of Republic, at the end of a dead-end road.

“If I buy Halloween candy, I know we're going to eat it.”

One trick-or-treater requested wine

But Karla Sherry knows the woman in question and was prepared when she arrived with an empty glass.

“I actually had seven bottles for her to choose from, in reds and whites,” wrote Sherry. “She chose a 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Winery.”

Halloween in Logan neighborhood

Maggie Fritz had 25 trick-or-treaters at her place.

Two girls came as Care Bears, in excellent homemade outfits. They were impressed that Fritz recognized their costumes.

Another kid, a boy, was made up to look like a member of KISS. He, too, was slightly amazed that Fritz could identify his costume theme.

“I pointed out my gray hair,” she said.

Halloween report from a friend

My friend John Kafentzis shared a Halloween 2013 headcount and a lasting memory.

“The results are in and we had 81 trick-or-treaters this year, not a record but not bad in a nation where parents are crazy with fear over the dangers their children face even though there is no statistical data that shows kids are in any more peril now than they were 50 years ago.

“This year was no record. When my kids were in their trick-or-treating prime we routinely toted more than 100.

“I always tally like my father did before me. Not that he, or me, ever remember the number the next year.

“Except once in the early '60s we had 221 trick-or-treaters visit our suburban Missoula home.

“I don't think it ever occurred to my dad to close the blinds and turn off the porch light. A child of the Depression and a World War II vet, he liked to finish what he started and he was a skillful adapter.

“That night adapting meant conscripting the goodies my sister and I had collected. My dad was always big on everyone pitching in.

“At least he let us choose what to give up. It was no big deal to sacrifice the fruit, popcorn balls and assortment of cheap suckers.

“”When we got down to the Milky Ways and Hersheys it was painful.

“They came in waves, cowboys and Indians, pirates and princesses and witches and hobos.

“There were times when he didn't close the door between groups.

“Then, it stopped. After 30 minutes of no trick-or-treaters my dad called it. It was way past 9. He had served every trick-or-treater who climbed our steps. My sister and I still had a few treats.

“He always remembered the year we had 221.

“We all did.”

Trick-or-treat headcounts

“I keep an official candy count so I know how much to buy next year,” wrote Janet Culbertson. “Around 50. And I always have an extra bag of my favorite just in case I get more than usual. Any leftovers are mine!

“I know the kids say 'Let's go to that crazy old woman's house. She always has the good stuff.' I love Halloween.”

Barry Bauchwitz filed this report. “My wife began an official and accurate tally when we moved into our home in the Valley. We average around 100 trick-or-treaters each year! It helps so that we are prepared with enough goodies to satisfy everyone.”

Halloween nostalgia

This illustration adorned the cover of the Saturday Evening Post dated Nov. 1, 1958.

Click on the link down below (the one on the very bottom) for more about it.

There’s movie scary and real-life scary

Have you ever worked at a place where a major round of layoffs was announced on Halloween?

You make the call

A couple of fresh-faced teens show up at your door on Halloween night.

They are not wearing costumes. They say they are part of some church-sponsored food drive.

They ask for canned goods.

What do you do?

A) Give them a couple of cans of food. B) Tell them to get lost. C) Politely say, “I can see that you have been taught that Halloween needs reforming. I do not share that belief. I like Halloween. And so, while I routinely contribute to food drives, I am not going to give you anything.” D) Hand them a couple of miniature Snickers. E) Other.

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About this blog

Features writer Paul Turner is a columnist for The Spokesman-Review in the Features department. He writes "The Slice" column, which appears six times a week and produces general features stories for the Today section.

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