Dino Drac’s Daily Halloween Thing!

Saturday, September 10th:

Well, I got one of yesterday’s challenges done. For the “eat something spooky that you’ve never eaten before” thing, say hello to Tostitos Scary Strips!

There’s a lot to like about these. While I’d prefer traditional tortilla chips if I was just dipping into a salsa jar, these thicker, hardier chips would work well with a bean dip, or as the base for overloaded nachos.

Also impressed that they achieved an orange hue without any artificial colors. Looks like they used annatto extract. It doesn’t change the flavor, nor the calorie count.

Course, these are “Scary Strips” in name only, unless we’re assuming that they’re shaped like mummy bandages? What you’re really paying for is the orange color. And the bag. The glorious, ghost-drenched bag.

Found at Sam’s Club! (I’m still working on that second challenge. I’ll let you know how that goes tomorrow.)

Friday, September 9th:

I’ve said it a million times, but the Halloween season is what you make of it. If you never take any initiative, it’ll eventually start to feel stale.

With that in mind, I’m gonna issue two PHYSICAL CHALLENGES for everyone to conquer by Sunday evening!

#1: Watch something spooky that you’ve never seen before. Don’t care if it’s a movie, an episode of a TV show, a cartoon, or hell, even footage of some old Gwar concert.

#2: Eat something Halloween/autumn-themed that you’ve never tried before. Given how much junk food we’ve seen this season, this should be easy. Even something as simple as pumpkin spice oatmeal counts.

Give those challenges a whirl, and report back on what you watched/ate in the comments! (And yes, I’ll be doing the same!)

Thursday, September 8th:

I’ve come to adore Jason Takes Manhattan. I’m glad that this weird movie is part of my favorite horror franchise.

Even if you’ve never seen it, you’ve probably heard the jokes. It’s less “Jason takes Manhattan” and more “Jason takes a boat.” Hell, even during that final stretch when Jason actually does take Manhattan, some scenes were shot in Vancouver.

Being disappointed back in ‘89 was understandable, because the film was kinda misrepresented in the trailers and TV spots. But we’ve had 30 years to get over it, and the simple truth is that Jason stalking his victims on a boat is a mad cool concept, anyway.

I feel like everything about this film is undervalued, from the lower-key final girl to Jason’s mummified head. Even the soundtrack is a banger, featuring Metropolis’s Darkest Side of Night – one of my all-time favorite spooky songs.

The next time you’re in the mood for a sleepy horror movie that you can watch sideways, give this one a shot. For the eighth movie in a series fond of repeating itself, it stands out!

Wednesday, September 7th:

I posted this on social media a few weeks ago, but it really deserved to be celebrated on Dino Drac, with more context.

I scored this giant, beautiful poster on Facebook Marketplace. It wasn’t extraordinarily cheap, but given that I’ve only seen one of these EVER, I have little doubt that it would’ve gone for 2-3x more had it hit eBay.

This isn’t any ordinary Elvira poster, no sir. Never available to the general public, this poster was meant to promote the 1989 Go Psycho With Elvira sweepstakes, which had its own classic TV commercial.

While that sweepstakes was most closely tied to Mug Root Beer, it was also sponsored by another Pepsi product: Slice, which I was totally in love with back then.

The grand prize was a trip to Universal Studios Hollywood to attend Elvira’s Halloween bash at the honest-to-goodness Bates Motel. Elvira, Slice and the Bates Motel, all on one poster? Jeeeeez.

Tuesday, September 6th:

In the ‘80s, panic over candy tampering was so huge that many hospitals offered free x-rays of your trick-or-treat bags. Seriously!

While it’s popularly believed that all “razors in candy” stories were just legends, stuff like that actually did happen on rare occasions. Whether those few stories merited electromagnetic assists from hospitals across the country, I leave up to the jury.

As kids, we were warned to never eat any of our Halloween candy until it’d been checked. It didn’t seem like a nuisance to us, because we were all convinced that sharp things and invisible poisons lurked inside every third or fourth Snickers bar.

Not gonna lie: The whiff of danger added something to the trick-or-treating experience. Deep down we knew that our candy was almost definitely safe, but that .00001% chance of disaster was weirdly exhilarating. Stupid, I know!

Monday, September 5th:

My nearest Target is usually the latest one to get spooky, so I was surprised to see their whole Halloween section up and running this morning.

Since the best stuff trickled out so early this year, there were no big surprises in the food section. Nice stuff for sure, but all things I already had, or had heard about weeks ago. One thing that did pique my interest were mini bags of Zapp’s Voodoo Chips, suitably sized for trick-or-treaters. I believe that’s a first?

They were much stronger in the decorations department. I’m already regretting not buying that $40 pumpkin skeleton, as I have a hunch that he’ll sell out quickly. Overall, Target’s found a great midpoint between the too-flimsy decorations at pharmacy chains and the too-expensive stuff at Spirit.

In other news, I just finished sprucing up the Halloween Jukebox. It now boasts *280* tracks, and I’ve also refreshed the song order. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 4th:

I saw this great dead leaf on the ground this morning. Prematurely dead, actually – probably owing more to the ongoing heat than any slide towards autumn.

It made me remember that some of the best things about this season aren’t ones you often see celebrated on the internet, and especially on social media. Let’s face it, one dead leaf is never gonna match the traction of, say, a video of the animatronics at Spirit Halloween, or a photo of an old McNugget Buddy.

So, let this leaf be our reminder to pay attention to the season’s plainer, purer pleasures. The stuff you wouldn’t post on IG or text a friend about.