Friday, November 4, 2016

Halloween Aftermath 2016

As incredibly difficult as it is to believe, it's November. We've already gone through one of the great holidays and are on course for even more. I'd wanted to return to you all on Halloween night with something to help boost the collective spirit of the holiday yet as you're about to find out I was busy with so many things that ended up making this Halloween one for the record books.

Since my last update I took to enjoying plenty of comfy time basking in the glory of decorations and horror films. Last Friday night however, things had to step into overdrive as we made a special trip out to the Unicorn Tavern in Lansing. You see the 28th was the 15th anniversary of my grandmothers passing, and as the Unicorn was pretty much her go to hang-out for countless years we decided to pay tribute by sitting down and taking in a few drinks accompanied by her old photos.

The Unicorn is something of an oddity for old town Lansing. While many of the bars there have been slowly converted to hipster holes with micro-brewed specialty liquors, this place is still straight up dive with crap beers on tap, loud music, and bathrooms fit for a horror film. Combined with some cheap Halloween decorations and it felt like a fine inclusion to our festivities.
Truth be told it was extra sad when my gramma passed so close to Halloween. She used to love coming over on that night to watch us hand out candy and what not. Paying tribute to her felt like the right thing to do this year so I'm really glad we all managed to find the time to get together for that.

The following day I had to work, which is already enough responsibility for my lazy butt that close to Halloween. That wasn't the only duty for the day as I had to host a Q&A about an hour after my shift ended. You all my recall that the local Freakshow Film Festival I reported on for Dread Central back in July asked me back for a special after party for the premiere of a local made short film. So yes after eight hours of guarding I had to rush to get gas, go home, clean up, and head downtown.
I arrived to find the show had begun later than planed so I passed the time in the lobby chatting with both clown hosts, Molotov was apparently on his way out while Dr. Colonal Nutjob was settling in as the new host. Also in the lobby was the lead actress from the short who didn't want to watch the original Halloween as she wasn't into horror films. This statement came across rather oddly from a person who you've seen devoured by a vampire, especially one who later praised the crazy Japanese horror flicks like Uzumaki.

Once the movie was over we headed down to a local event hall called, wait for it...The Hall. Maybe a fifth of the film attendees took in the after party which made it slightly easier for me to do my thing. Thankfully the the crew I was interviewing got pretty talkative after the first few questions leaving me the responsibility of standing there and not looking terrified. I plan on going into greater detail in a new dread central article so keep an eye out for that.
After the questions I actually got to hang around the party and socialize for a while, take in some booze and pizza. I was out until 3:30 in the morning which left me no time to clean pumpkins that night. On the plus side, I'm now the owner of a sighed poster and DVD for a pretty weak twenty minute vampire film.

Sunday came around and guess what? More work, followed by a night of endless pumpkin carving. That second part is nothing new as I've marked Devil's Night as the official carve-a-thon for the past decade. It wasn't my best line-up of lanterns, though it was a massive improvement over last year when many of my pumpkins had preemptively rotted. If you've ever cleaned out moldy, rotten fruit guts you know what I'm talking about.

At last, the night I dream about all year long was here and man did it go over smoothly. Everybody pitched in and contributed to the celebration. The weather was so nice that our usual stash of nearly 300 baggies wasn't enough and we had to send out my brother for more. My mother helped hand out candy, my nephew helped scare people, even one of the nieces went trick or treating so we'd have some Starburst of our own. Everybody played a part and it went over so well. Complete strangers were taking pictures with us or of our pumpkins and decorations. It's that one magical night when my house becomes a hot spot and I savor it like fine wine.

Before I forget, have a look at some of our masks. I was able to snap up some real goodies. My best find by far was that a line of masks called The Nightmare Collection had been put on clearance allowing me to get both the Amphibious Alien and Grim Jester for a steal. The alien weighs a ton and practically takes a pit crew to put on but overall it worked well. My fat head won't fit into the jester so that will be modified or turned into a decoration.
My brother got a mask from Trick or Treat Studios Krampus collection. He'd actually ordered the less expensive window peeper mask because this one was out of stuck, obviously the order got messed up at some point so let's call that a fine bit of luck. Sadly the thing is so heavy that the one pathetic strap doesn't hold it in place making it more of a decoration. Also want to point out it had tags for how to care for a latex mask. Jesus, Trick or Treat, get your shit together.
My nephew wore the animotion scarecrow mask which worked out great. I've tried get one of these before but they never fit my head quite right. The kid didn't have that issue. You may also notice a devil themed luchador mask I get in straight from Mexico City for anyone who needed a quick costume.

The rest of the night while a bit more quiet than I would have liked but was still good. Took in some new spooky flicks, ate crap tons of pizza and pumpkin ale. When I consider all the adventures and new goodies I experienced this year, it was definitely one of the finest seasons in recent memory. There were a few extra items I wish I'd fit it but it wasn't for a lack of trying. This was a jam packed Halloween which after all the work I've had this year, this was the kind of celebration I needed.

Currently I'm in the midst of the great undecorating spree. There's a good 8 or 9 totes overflowing in the basement with more items still waiting to be taken down. Not to mention I still have my Luigi's Mansion to beat, the Fury of Dracula board game to play, and excess horror flicks to fill my Saturday nights for weeks to come. As if that wasn't enough to keep me occupied, I visited Barnes and Nobel and splurged on their Criterion sale, now I've got 25 Zatoichi movies to work through.

As for the site I've got several articles planed and lining up for you all. First I've gotta catch up on Zyuohger recaps, then I've got the newest Star Wars novel to talk about, and let's not forget about all that fine seasonal food hitting the aisles.

I hope Halloween treated you all well. Even if it didn't live up to your expectations we're still in the heart of the holiday streak. There's a giant turkey followed by a jolly fat man charging our way. Plenty of opportunity to have some fun. Talk to you all soon.

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