Sunday, October 31, 2010

The survey results are in !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here is how YOU celebrate Halloween

About a year ago I posted a survey to learn how different people celebrate Halloween. Well, the results are in. Here's what I found...

You (the average Halloween-enthusiast) don't have any trick-or-treating aged children living in your home (60%), but you still decorate the inside (41%) for the enjoyment of yourself and your family (65%). Your interior decorations (63%) and your outdoor decorations (23%) remain up for approximately one month. You also display certain decorative items year round that you don't consider "Halloween-y", but admit that the average American probably would (81%).
You're slightly more likely to let the public walk through your yard haunt (52%) than have to admire it from behind a barrier (48%). Your mostly homemade (48%) outdoor decorations are durable enough to be left out in the wind and rain (83%) and luckily, none have ever been stolen (77%). You're far more likely to have a "scary" display (36%) than a "cute" (4%) or "gory/bloody" display (7%).
You spend between $100 and $400 on your decorations each year (47%). Your cobwebs are made out of a cotton-like material (48%), you have a fog machine running (75%) and spooky music playing (80%). You do not, however, use fake blood (60%), a simulated thunder & lightning machine (56%), live costumed actors (60%) or pneumatic props (77%). And, for that matter, you've also never been to a Halloween / haunt / horror convention (65%) and don't subscribe to any such magazines either (69%).
If Halloween falls on a weekday, you take the day off from work (71%). Horror movies are your favorite (50%) and you dress up for Halloween (80%).
Unfortunately, despite all of your hard work, fewer than twenty-five trick or treaters come to your door (29%).

***Here are a few more interesting results worth noting...
21% of you leave your interior Halloween decorations up year-round.
17% only have your outdoor decorations up for one night.
6% of you get between 500 and 1000 trick-or-treaters,
and 3% of you get over 1000 people ringing your bell!

(I'll probably be releasing a new, more detailed survey sometime after Halloween. Let me know if you have ideas for additional questions.)

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Dave Lowe is amazing! Here's an example of what he can do in under a half hour while watching TV.

Friday, October 29, 2010

"It's the most wonderful time of the year..."

I know how you feel Lio. I know exactly how you feel.

Child vampire sighted at local 7-11

We did a make-up test run on my son today. Afterwards, he accompanied me to 7-11 for a gallon of milk. When one couple in a parked car pointed, he lunged at them and snarled. They screamed. He loved it! What a great time of year!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

More from Haunted Overload

Eric from Haunted Overload just sent me some terrific photos of his haunt. Enjoy!

Custom headless portrait

Perfect for Halloween! Send this Etsy artist a full frame profile photograph of yourself and she'll create custom silhouette of your decapitated head.  (Vertibrae and all.)

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I visited Haunted Overload!!!

This weekend Mrs. Bones and I made the pilgrimage to Haunted Overload.  It was amazing!  Totally worth the long drive.  I highly recommend visiting.

    Here's a tip though... show up early!  We got there a few minutes before the haunt opened for the night and the line was already massive!  I remember reading somewhere that the organizers hope to get about a thousand attendees each night.  Well, it looked like there were already a thousand people there and the haunt hadn't even opened yet.  Despite the long line it only took about 45 minutes for us to work our way to the entrance.  During that time we were entertained by actors, admired hundreds of carved pumpkins, walked beneath a 25 foot tall witch and watched chainsaw-wielding maniacs chase other haunt-goers.  The time flew.  (In the future though, they should consider selling hot cider to the people waiting in line.  It was cold!)

    Amazingly, once we walked through the main entrance, we were alone. My wife kept asking "where's that family that went in right before us?" They had only entered a couple of minutes before, so I assumed that we would eventually catch up with them. Nope. Never saw them again. For the 20 minutes that it takes to get through the haunt we were totally by ourselves. Well, by ourselves amongst the assorted ghouls, that is.
    It's no exaggeration to say that we probably encountered 50 - 60 costumed actors. They lunged towards us, blocked our path, invaded our personal space, smelled us, chased us, and (as my wife found the most terrifying) silently followed us for minutes at a stretch. Because of the strength of their actors, Haunted Overload is able to remain scary without resorting to cheap scares, the use of any sort of forced storyline or an over-abundance of bloody props.

    As much as I loved the actors through, my favorite thing about this haunt has to be the general atmosphere. It was a total departure from the type of haunts I'm used to. Instead of walking through a prop-filled tent in a car dealership parking lot, or an "insane asylum" constructed in the shell of a recently closed super store, we actually were walking through a dark, creepy woods. And everything that they added (buildings that look like they've been there for 50 years, trees with tortured faces that look like they naturally grew that way, rusted out shells of automobiles that must have been abandoned ages ago) felt 100% authentic to the environment.
    The next day, we returned to tour the haunt during daylight hours. (It's not very well advertised, but for just $5 they'll let you walk through without any effects going or actors present.) It was great to be able to take our time admiring the craftsmanship of the display and their attention to detail. I couldn't believe how much we had missed the night before! Every time we looked left, we were unknowingly missing tons of great stuff to the right. We must have spent twice as much time walking through during the day as we had the night before. (In part because we weren't being menaced by werewolves following my wife or zombie children asking "have you seen my mommy?") You could probably go through the haunt a dozen times at night and never see it all.

(I didn't bring my camera with me, but here are a few shots that I was able to capture using my mobile phone.  The fact that they are of passable quality is a testament to Haunted Overload's exceptional set-design and shouldn't be considered a function of the photographer's artistic ability since no such ability exists.)

A t-shirt that tells it like it is

"Wearing this tee is a reminder to stay in touch with the reality of impermanence."  Available from the Interdependence Project.

(Via Boing Boing)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Til Death Do Us Party

Halloween-themed engagement party announcement by Us and Them

(Via SuperPunch)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Eating eyeballs! Yum!

This website features recipes for a wide variety of ghoulish goodies. My favorite is the Eerie Eyeballs though. Looks at those things! They're gorgeous! Who wouldn't want to eat them?

(Via Boing Boing)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sears loves zombies?

Now that they're actively courting undead consumers, Sears is looking quite a bit more attractive to me. Check out their awesome Zombie-themed site. (Viewable in either English or Zombian)

(Via Boing Boing)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Candy Hierarchy

Before you purchase any Swedish Fish for this year's trick-or-treaters, you might want to check out "The Candy Hierarchy".  Created by Ben Cohen (an environmental historian over at the University of Virginia) it sets out to rank candy according to "emotional zeal" or "joy induction."  I always suspected that licorice sucked.  Now I have scientific proof!

(Via Boing Boing)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Driving Miss Corpse-y

"It is hard to shock a seasoned police officer, but police in the Los Angeles area say they have never seen what they found in a woman's car this week. They say a woman was driving around for months with a dead mummified body in the front passenger's seat." (Click here to see a local news report on this incident)

Ghosts are strong!

By artist Reed Barrow

(Via Who Killed Bambi)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Shall I visit Netherworld???

Since my Halloween has been cancelled this year, I'm trying to fill my newly empty social calendar with trips to haunts that I've always wanted to check out.
Last weekend I spent some time at Six Flag's FrightFest.  This weekend I'll be going to experience Haunted Overload in New Hampshire.  What do you think of my spending next weekend at Netherworld in Atlanta?

Have you ever been?  Is it worth checking out?

(Photo courtesy of Deviant Art)

Remote control spiders

The commercial's sort of lame, but this product seems cool.  It can crawl up walls and across the ceiling?  The dark little wheels in my brain are turning...  Friends and neighbors beware!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Nightmare on Elm Street - The Inside Story

In time for Halloween, BIO Channel offers two programs going inside famously scary films. The two-part event Nightmare on Elm Street: The Inside Story Part 1 airs October 20 at 9p and Part 2 on October 21 at 9p; and Halloween: The Inside Story airs October 28 at 9p takes a look at the making of John Carpenter's 1978 horror masterpiece. "The definitive account of what many have called the best, most frightening and imaginative horror franchise in motion picture history. This original 2-part documentary features interviews with directors including Wes Craven, Renny Harlin, Ronny Yu and the stars including John Saxon, Alice Cooper, Monica Keena and Freddy Krueger himself, Robert Englund. This special will also showcase deleted footage, behind-the-scenes clips and rare cast and crew photos."

Napoleon Blownapart? Seriously?

I saw this for sale today at K-Mart.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Update: Skull face tattoo

I wrote about this guy back in 2007. At the time, he only (and I use the word "only" very loosely) had his face tattooed. Well, since then his zombification has continued and that haunted ink has spread over his entire body.

For more photos of Rick the tattooed zombie boy, click here.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Skeleton car

Check out the art of Jitish Kallat. He creates cars out of bones, and transcribes entire speeches by Mahatma Gandhi using bone-shaped letters.

(Via Who Killed Bambi)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Monsterized Mini-Cooper

I wish all cars had grills like this.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Haunted buildings

Dark Passage is a New York-based organization that explores (and photographs) abandoned buildings and derelict sites.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Halloween Express shoplifter punished

This is a great punishment. Very clever.

Get married in a haunted chapel

When I got hitched in Vegas it was at the Graceland Wedding Chapel with young Elvis presiding over the nuptials. (True story). Little did I know that Vegas also offers haunted weddings! For $850, Mandalay Bay will let you get married in their Halloween-themed wedding chapel on October 29, 30 or 31. (Or, if you're willing to wait until next year, I'll use my credentials as a minister in the Universal Life Church to marry you in my spooktacular front yard for FREE!)

(Via Halloween Addict)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Target hates your mom's homemade costumes

I get that they're in the business of selling costumes this time of year, but why did they have to make fun of crafty moms?  That's a pretty awesome looking Iron Man costume. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Zombie Fest invite

This pillow was the invitation to a 2009 zombie-film festival. In 2010, "an envelope with holes in it was sent out to the members of the festival. Inside the envelope there was a fold-out poster with bullet holes everywhere, except for the head. (The only place where a zombie can be killed)." (Via Ads Of The World)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Making the pilgrimage to Haunted Overload!!

The only good thing about not being able to do my yard haunt this year is that I finally have time to go see those great haunted houses and terror trails that I've been coveting for years. My first stop is the amazing Haunted Overload in Lee, New Hampshire. (I used to think that the giant witch in my yard was big until I saw the monsters that Eric at Haunted Overload mounts onto telephone poles!)

***I need your help! My wife has agreed to make the six hour trek with me to see this haunt as long as I can provide her with a romantic meal and a nice bed & breakfast. Can any of you recommend a nice town near Lee, New Hampshire? Something quaint with nice stores that she can browse. She hates long car rides and isn't nearly as much of a haunt-enthusiast as I am, so I want to make this trip worth her while.  Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated!

(By the way, the photo above is from Haunted Overload's 2009 set-up.  I move my props around on a hand truck and they use a pick-up truck.  Amazing!)

Scrapyard skeleton

I found this scrap metal skeleton at the Washington County Fair in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Surprisingly, it was more anatomically acurate than many of the plastic skeletons for sale at Halloween time.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Dracula pinball machine

A friend of mine just purchased this Dracula pinball machine. It's from the late 70's. I can't believe I've never heard of this one before. Have you?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Halloween dog toys

There's a new dog in my family, so of course I had to outfit her with some haunt-worthy chew toys.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Anatomical Oscar Awards

Way back in March, around Oscar time, I discovered this statue while visiting Hollywood. Created by artist D*Face, it featured an Oscar statue, melting to expose muscle and bones. The title of this piece? "Beauty Is Skin Deep".

You can read more about this sculpture and artist here.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Fashionable skeletons

"A photographer will always be in need of his or her muse. During the mid 1990s famed fashion photographer Richard Avedeon shot iconic model Nadja Auermann various times (Versace ads included). The collaboration between the two peaked in 1995 when Avedon shot a 25 pages long spread for The New Yorker of Auermann together with a skeleton, labelling the series In memory of the late Mr. & Mrs. Comfort. Auermann appears in million dollar dresses together with her deceased husband, Mr Comfort. One of the most impressive fashion spreads from that time, Auermann was clad in pieces from Gaultier, Issey Miyake, Lacroix, Comme des Garçons, Manolo Blanik, Thierry Mugler, Versace and Margiela. Smoking, showering and dancing in a ring of fire it’s one of those moments in editorial history that makes you pause, reconsider and whisper 'oh, wow'."

(Via Looklet Magazine)

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