Halloween is spooky. It’s a scary time, a time to be afraid.
We dress in costumes and try to look like hideous creatures from horror movies. We decorate with ghastly gravestones and creepy cobwebs. At our parties, we serve finger food made to look like real fingers and eyeballs and offer our ghoulish guests a fresh glass of “blood.” We shiver and scream our way through the haunted houses that seem to spring up on every corner this time of year. For many of us the common emotional response on the last day in October is a sort of playful form of fear.
When I was a young kid, I was afraid of hanging my hands over the side of bed at night because I was sure something was lurking under my bed just waiting to grab me. I hid my face in my hands during particularly scary movie scenes, and I wouldn’t go into a basement by myself at night even with the light on.
Eventually I grew out of most of my childhood fears (although I’m still a little wary of what is under the bed) and even learned to revel in the sensation of being scared out of my wits.
My favorite time of the week became Friday night, partly because there was no school the next day and partly because “Nightmare Theater” with Sammy Terry was on.
At 11:30, I would turn off all the lights and snuggle up on the couch while Sammy commenced his reverb-drenched evil laugh as he introduced that night’s feature film, which was usually some cheesy B-movie like “The Amazing Colossal Man vs. The 50-Foot Woman.”