Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Spooky edition of Letters To The Reader

Dear broke ass trick-or-treater with no costume,

I know times are tough, but give me a break, kid. You don’t have to wow me, but at least put forth some effort. Draw a scary face on a paper sack and cut out a couple of eyeholes. Drape yourself in a discarded sheet. Hell, roll around in my lawn clippings and call yourself the Swamp Thing. Do something because otherwise you’re not getting a treat this year. I’m sick of being a sucker. And, you know what? I can make bold statements like those because your threats of a trick are idle. If you can’t afford a crayon and a paper sack, you dang well can’t afford to waste any toilet paper on my trees.

Columbia City Paper

Dear slim shady dude that always threatens to punch the actors in the Jaycees haunted house,

That act may impress your mouth-breathing girlfriend, but the rest of us—after years of enduring your retarded ass—wish you’d just admit that you’re scared. Due to a mixture of low I.Q. and rural superstition, you’re actually frightened by some fake blood, black plastic tarps and strobe lights. And the only way you can cope is to punch a guy in a rubber mask who’s volunteering for charity on his night off. Even more ridiculous is the fact that you usually brag about it later in the parking lot, as if you actually defended yourself from a real monster. This year, just skip the spook house if you can’t deal. And, go put on a shirt, man. It’s October.

Columbia City Paper

Dear apparition in my thermal imaging camera,

Now, that’s odd. Who would be crawling across the ceiling in the pitch dark? The other guys in the research team ought to get a load of this. It’s a shame I’ve gotten separated from them in this darkness, because, wow, the color signatures really just spiked when it crab-walked down the wall and then floated over to hover a few feet in front of me. It’s like I can almost hear a faint, rattled breathing. What could be the cause of an anomaly like that?


Columbia City Paper

Dear Halloween pranksters,

There is no way you’ll be able to roll City Paper offices at 1737 Main St. (the big granite building at the corner of Main and Laurel). Nor will you be able to trick us by leaving a flaming dog turd in front of our big wooden front doors. Plus, if you see a City Paper staffer—we all plan to wear matching policeman costumes or yellow “street team” outfits—we know you’re way too chicken to hit us from behind with a large bag of garbage. Try us.

Columbia City Paper

Dear college coeds,

Please heed the following Halloween public service announcement:

To ensure your safety this season, we urge you to use caution when partying at the following locations: abandoned mental hospitals; isolated mountain campgrounds; former sites of grisly murders; or ancient Native American burial sites. Come to think of it, just don’t drink beer and party anywhere. That goes double for couples leaving the larger group to find a place to make out. If you just can’t contain yourselves, for Christ’s sake, at least don’t make out in cemeteries located near nuclear power plants that may leak contaminants into the ground and cause zombie-ism in those buried on site.

Fellas, if your area is plagued by a bloodthirsty psychopath known for wearing, say, a WWI-era gas mask on his annual Halloween killing spree, logic should tell you not to wear an identical mask. It’s just common sense. You’ll only confuse your friends later in the night and give the killer an advantage when he lumbers into your house party and starts systematically picking you off one by one. Inevitably, your girlfriend will start banging the real killer in the closet thinking it’s you, only to pull off the mask to reveal his hideous face seconds before he impales her with a pair of gardening shears.

Aside from the dangers of house parties, girls, you should be particularly wary of allowing your date to drive you to a deserted area to “park.” It goes without saying that his car will likely get a flat tire. Should a flat occur, he’ll probably leave you sitting in the passenger seat in your underwear, draped in his letterman jacket to stay warm, while he takes a shortcut through the swamp to that creepy hillbilly with the tow truck at the rundown gas station. (Undoubtedly, the one who warned you about driving out there after dark in the first place.) Now this is key: when you’re sitting out there alone and hear scratching on the windows, don’t say, “C’mon Johnny quit fooling around” and get out of the car to investigate. You’ll thank yourself later when Johnny’s headless corpse is slammed up against your window. At this point, try to control your hysterical screaming, take deep breaths and start the car. You will have a better chance of escape on a blown tire than if you fall out the door to run tripping and screaming through the swamp.

Finally, whatever you do, don’t try to shoot giant insects or yell challenges at anything purported to be haunted. If you accidentally run over the town witch, don’t try to hide her body and think that nothing will happen. And, if you happen to work as a late night security guard at a morgue, don’t greedily eat a sandwich while listening to headphones; that’s just asking for it.

If you employ the techniques above, chances are you’ll make it through another Halloween night.

Columbia City Paper

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