Draculas Do Not Roar: My Problems With Walk-Through Haunted Houses

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I'm looking forward to Halloween SZN.

The weather cools off, hockey is in full swing, and every channel is playing your favorite horror movies.

It's fun, but the prospect of partaking in one of the hallmark Halloween activities still fills me with dread to this day: the walk-through haunted house.

Let's rewind to my youth for a second.

As a li'l fella, I wasn't a fan of Halloween.

You see, I was a very spiritual young man who did not want any part of a satanic/pagan ritual like Halloween, with its roots stretching back to the Gaelic ritual of Samhain...

...just kidding. I was a total pussy who was scared of everything.

Being dragged shopping from Labor Day until the calendar flipped to November was an utter nightmare for me.

I would circumnavigate an entire store to avoid the Halloween aisle. Plastic skeletons, masks, and pumpkins with maniacal laughs lined those shelves and I wanted no part of it.

As I got older, I warmed up to Halloween and now I would call us pals.

In fact, now I look forward to it. I love watching horror movies and even have fun standing on the front porch handing out candy to children whose parents have encouraged them to take candy from strangers for one night only because it's sanctioned by the local government.

But still, the idea of going through one of those haunted house mazes things with people jumping out at you is a no-go for this humble writer/podcaster/amateur roller derby champion.

Even as an adult, I've been the guy who nopes out of going to any of these attractions. I've spent a considerable amount of time trying to figure out why this is the case, and after spending large sums of money on focus groups and therapists as well, I think I hit on why.

I don't like people.

Maybe that's not the best way of saying it. What I mean is I don't like the people in the haunted houses. I'm sure they're fine folks outside the attractions, but for some reason donning prosthetics and a chainless chain saw gives people carté blanche to turn into assholes.

I know their job is to scare you, but can we dial it back a notch? I don't mean make things less scary, but let's curb the enthusiasm just a bit.

I wouldn't want a stranger getting in my face under any circumstance. They don't get a pass because they're dressed up like a zombie.

I never liked how the sounds the monsters make aren't usually accurate either. They all do this guttural roar. I know that a lot of these performers aren't seasoned actors but when I see someone dressed as Dracula roaring like a werewolf, I just cross my arms and shake my head, because there's enough documentation out there to indicate that Draculas do not roar.

Now they have extreme haunted houses. I'm not sure what sort of sadistic creeps enjoy paying to literally be tortured by amateurs (not like those professional torturers we all know and love).

So if you like that sort of thing, then keep going to your favorite haunted house, but leave me out of it.


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