Monday, October 31, 2011

Haunted by Big Chuck

Having taken my kids to their first haunted house experience reminds me of my own, thirty-five years ago or so.

It was back behind the Hills Department store in Champion. I don't remember the set up, probably a couple trailers strung together. What I do remember is that parts of it were scary. Well, one part, with zombies clawing at me from behind a cage - having to pass close enough for them to grab me due to the narrow hall. It was one of those stop moments, where you can't go on. Mr. Smith, who had taken Kevin and I, prodded me forward and I somehow survived the encounter.

The other thing I remember was Big Chuck and Hoolihan autographing pictures from their show, under a black light (which made the photos glow...really cool). Hoolihan signed mine.

I had a lot of fun being scared as a kid. More so than I think my daughter has been able to enjoy. I remember seeing Jaws at her age and, subsequently, being afraid of swimming pools and bathtubs (I had a boy's natural antipathy towards bathing, but that's a different story). One way in which I think we have erred, as parents, is overly sheltering our children from being frightened. Roller coasters, haunted houses, scary movies - they're fun!

Let 'em have fun.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Haunted House

Last night I took my daughter to her first haunted house experience - Bloodview. Staffed by the Legion of Terror, the LoT actors did a wonderful job not only populating the haunted houses and walkways with monsters, but leaving no place "safe" for those in attendance. The parking lot, the food court, there was no place you couldn't run into a ghoulish figure bent on scaring you.

Even the location is a bit off the beaten path. Dark. Somewhat foreboding.

My daughter got her money's worth before we even bought our tickets. Like a typical pre-teen, she isn't always aware of her surroundings and a man with a hook slammed the hurricane fence next to her and screamed in her face. There was a lot of screaming in your face, which makes me wonder if the actors don't end up with sore throats.

Anyway, it was a wonderfully frightening experience for her. I had a blast, too, watching her and enjoying the work that was put into the production.

I even went back later, with my wife and son. Judging that it would be too intense for my son, I sent my wife through with my daughter. Evidently, it was different enough on the second pass to scare my daughter again. I hung out in the food court with my son, who enjoyed the roaming actors and the fire-breathing show.

Admission is a bit pricey at $15 pp, but the proceeds go to charity. The food and drink, however, was very affordable (most things $1).

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Catching Up

I haven't written much lately. I guess I just fell out of the habit. So let me catch up with some of my life's events.

  • Became Brunswick Nation Chief of the Medina Guides & Princesses
  • Spent an overnight at The Wilds, a game preserve in southern Ohio
  • Needed some work done on our furnace, a/c, & water tank - decided to replace it all
  • Work has gotten more weird for me, which was unexpected
  • Forty-fifth birthday: camera and Arduino (I'm such a geek)

Clocking Time

Right now, my thoughts are nine months ahead of me. I'm thinking about our vacation plans for the summer. Jackson, WY. Yellowstone. Grand Tetons. Midwestern boy playing cowboy for a week.

There's a tinge of worry, fraying at the edges of my dreams. Money. Soffits this spring, furnace this fall, wife looking for work - money is a worry. Not that we won't have it. No. The worry is that we won't spend it. That I will feel guilty with every dollar spent on frivolity. Just like the fear that my son will misbehave, it's probably misplaced.

Dammit, though. It doesn't do much to weaken my vision of what could be a wonderful vacation. As good as any we've had with or without the kids. Right now, I'm clocking time. My heart is nine months hence. Waiting.