“Perversity is the human thirst for self-torture.”
– Edgar Allan Poe
For most of the year, I only exist. I grasp at distractions and have my share of smiles, but still, for most of the year, I just exist. It’s kind of a waking, walking hibernation.
And now, it’s finally over.
Welcome to Dinosaur Dracula’s 2013 HALLOWEEN COUNTDOWN.
This is it! For the next sixty days and nights, I’m all yours and you’re all mine.
It’s the best time of year. You know it, I know it. Though this is only Dino Drac’s second at-bat, it’s actually my eleventh straight year of Halloween Countdowns. Many of you have been around for several of them. Some of you have even been around for all of them. (Wow.)
Together, we’ve discovered that Halloween is not merely “a day.” It’s two full months of perfect excuses to do so many things that just don’t have the same appeal at any other time of year. Halloween brings the kid out of all of us. It’s capable of making virtually every facet of life fun and exhilarating.
Suddenly, everything has renewed meaning. Every drive, every trip to the store, every cursory examination of what’s on television… these banal things now reek of potential. Oh, God! I’m practically paralyzed with joy. It feels like Christmas morning, but in slow motion.
Wait, what? You’re new to Dinosaur Dracula? You don’t know what a “Halloween Countdown” is?
Okay. I’ll explain.
Between now and October 31st, I’ll be posting something related to Halloween nearly every day. If you think that sounds tiresome… boy, I’m gonna enjoy showing you how Halloween REALLY works. The season’s surface is phenomenal, but the deeper you dig, the more gold you find. I dabble in the basics, but I don’t dwell on them. You won’t believe how much Halloween can mean if you let it. Over the course of the next two months, I intend to prove it.
Some posts will be long, others will be short. Some will be essays, others will be videos. There’s only one hard and fast rule: We MUST have fun. All of us. Me, you, and the lurking stranger who only steps out of the darkness once every six months to tell me about my typos.
I want my site and its associated entities to help you make the most of your season, even when life won’t seem to cooperate. Some of you have big families, or work long hours, or maybe you’re just dealing with too much zany shit to really dedicate yourself to costume shops and haunted hayrides. It happens, I get it. But if you give Dino Drac ten minutes a day, Halloween can still be a thing for you. That’s my goal. I want to be your eerie oasis.
Oh, and every year, the same subject comes up. “When is it proper to start celebrating Halloween?” Surely there are those who believe I’m starting too early. In years past, I might have agreed. Not anymore, though. Halloween just has too much to offer. Even two full months is barely enough!
…which isn’t to say that I’m a proponent of “blowing your wad.” As someone who has crippled many Halloween seasons by going all-in too early, I know that there needs to be a crescendo in play. You’ve gotta save some of the big stuff for October. October deserves to be special.
So, when I say that it’s okay to celebrate Halloween in September, it’s not like I’m suggesting that you go carve ten pumpkins and throw a costume party. There are TONS of easy ways to get your spook on in more subtle ways. Here are five of them!
#1: Stuff your DVR with spooky things!
It’s all about the keywords. Play around, and you’ll be amazed at what you’ll find. Search for “horror,” and “Halloween,” and “spooky,” and “monsters,” and “ghosts,” and whatever else you can think of. You’re going to find so much awesome shit. Once you get a good stock going, you’ll never once be at home without a “Halloween thing” to do.
#2: Draw and color like you’re six years old.
One of my favorite things about this season is how it lends itself to a certain kind of art. Grade school art, basically. Grab a pad, grab some markers, and go to fucking town. Invent creatures, or pay tribute to your favorite movie monsters. You don’t have to be a polished artist to get joy out of this. I sure ain’t.
(PS: That purple demon up there. It’s like someone crossbred a Hutt with Gorga the Space Monster.)
#3: Read a scary book!
This is pretty obvious, but here’s the thing: You can make a night out of just GETTING your scary book. Don’t blow the opportunity by scouring Amazon. If there was ever a time to go to a brick-and-mortar bookstore, this is it. You’ll feel a special connection to your scary book if you do it that way, and besides, bookstores are inherently Halloweeny. I can’t explain why, but they are.
Then, when you get home, curl up with a blanket and some crazy seasonal tea, and have at it. Bonus points if you read during a thunderstorm!
#4: Find, buy and eat lots of Halloween junk food.
Here’s one way that September definitely tops October. Almost all of the random “Halloween foods” arrive in September (if not earlier), while October’s debuts are a comparative few. It’s kinda hard to wait a month when Frute Brute and Halloween Crunch are in your face every time you go to Target.
I say, don’t bother trying. Trick-or-treating has already marked this as the best season to not care at all about what you put in your body. Don’t let the kids have all the fun. You deserve some, too.
So go for it. Find the Cadbury Screme Eggs, and eat ‘em until you puke. It’s okay, because puke is Halloweeny.
#5: Go for a walk!
I swear, this isn’t lame. Last year, me and Ms. X got in the habit of going for “spooky walks” at night. We tried to find the most desolate and/or wooded areas. It was a blast. We saw no ghosts and were chased by no serial killers, but every time we went on one, I came back feeling not just physically energized, but mentally, too. Like I was ready to watch every horror movie ever made, or at least two of them, because walking makes me tired.
If you think about it, the appeal makes perfect sense. We all go out at night, but how many of us actually take the time to enjoy the night itself? Do it. I command you.
And with that, the 2013 Halloween Countdown has begun.
Somebody give me a martini mixed with three measures of red food coloring.
PS: The Halloween Jukebox has returned! It should be easy to spot.
PPS: Big thanks to Jason Week for continuing his assault of awesomeness with Dino Drac’s latest Halloween logo. Another amazing job, my brother.
PPSSSPS: If you’re new to Dino Drac, see what you missed during last year’s Countdown!
PPSPSSPSPS: IT’S HALLOWEEN TIME YES YES YES!!!!