Halloween is this week and around our house it is not nearly the holiday it was three or four years ago. In some ways I kind of miss the kids not having a school Halloween party, costumes to dream up and of course trick-or-treating. I especially miss the trick-or-treating. OK, so I miss the digging through the kids loot and picking out my favorites. First all the chocolate is picked out, then the other candy and then about Thanksgiving you are down to the Smarties and Dum Dums.
Halloween in a household of teenagers is an entirely different thing. Gone are the cute costumes, candy and fun and in its place are the horror movies, Halloween parties and being scared out of your mind. Of course we adults have even outgrown the being scared part of Halloween. Monsters, aliens, zombies and paranormal activity may scare youngsters on Halloween but we adults know that horror is constant year round. Let me give you some horrifying examples of what is truly scary.
I get really scared when my mechanic tells me to sit down before he hands me the bill. I was scared out of my mind at the sight of the orthodontist handing me the payment book. I find my hand shakes uncontrollably when I make out the property tax in May. Each August I am overcome by a feeling of dread as I open the mailbox on the day the electric bill comes. A feeling of panic comes as I watch the numbers change at the gas pump almost daily.
If daily life wasn’t scary enough there is the horror that comes with being a parent. Not just Hollywood fear, but the true shock of gazing upon your teenage son’s room. No natural disaster horror flick can hold a candle to the destruction you are witnessing. No sound will cause you to lose sleep like the giggles of a gaggle of girls on an overnight sleep-over. And of course, nothing, I mean nothing is scarier than teaching your child to drive. Just the thought of it causes me to break out in a cold sweat and my heart to palpitate (It really isn’t what you think, Ike is a pretty good driver, I am thinking about my insurance rates).
Speaking of cars they have their own, unique terrifying moments. Scary sounds, like the sound of a clicking ignition signaling a dead battery or the air hissing out of your tire. Bad feelings like the sickening bump, bump, bump of a flat tire and the horrifying realization that you left the spare at home. Then there is the sudden frightening appearance of the deer you couldn’t find during hunting season suddenly materializing right in front of your hood. Paying my $500 deductable, now that is scary.
Fear follows me to work too. I have experienced the eerie silence of the tractor that dies two miles from home and out of cell phone reception. Then there is the silence of the lambs a sound that often greets me telling me that the sheep have once again escaped the confines of their pen. The sudden disappearance of all the cattle in a pasture is terrifying and the sudden appearance of manure in the road is spooky. I recoil in fear each time I check the commodity markets, the radar during harvest or my bank account at any time.
Yes, Mr. Hitchcock you may have found those birds scary but try carrying a bucket of feed into my ewe pen and then you will know real fear. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre terrifies most people but the Kansas Chainsaw Not Running causes my hair to stand on end. And the Nightmare on Elm Street is nothing when compared to the Weaning in the Corrals.
I don’t know if you are as scared as I am, but I find everyday life chilling. I guess the everyday fears are why most people go to horror movies; it is an escape from life’s pressures. However, I for one, don’t like to be scared, that is why I prefer my Halloweens to be about costumes and trick-or-treating. So if you will excuse me I have a whole bag of Halloween candy to eat and the results of that could be real scary.