Published Friday, October 19, 2012

Halloween horror tips

For a kid who has never seen an R-rated movie, my son knows a lot about them – particularly scary ones.

He can describe the plot of classics such as “Psycho,” “Amityville Horror,” “Halloween,” “Friday the 13th,” “Nightmare on Elm Street,” “Jaws,” “The Creature from the Black Lagoon,” “The Blob” and many, many, many more – a fact that is quite horrifying to his mother.

Apparently, one of the television channels is showing a scary movie a night. While I was out of town at a writers’ conference, he was home watching – not the movies – but the commercials.

“Who do you think is scarier, Jason or Chucky?” he asked.

After much debate, we decided that, while Chucky is certainly creepy and worth checking twice under our beds for, his small stature gave us the upper hand.

“Who do you think is the scariest out of all the horror movies,” he asked.

That was easy – Michael Myers.

And forget the movie, I remember borrowing the book, “Halloween,” from a friend and reading it on the bus.

“What’s ‘The Shining’ about?” he asked.

I could have regaled him with the details, but instead, being a mom and scared to death of that movie, I said, “Nothing you need to know about.”

To his credit, he didn’t press. Some stories are better left dead and buried.

With his help, I have compiled a list of do’s and don'ts if you happen to encounter Chucky, Jason or, gulp, Michael Myers this Halloween:

Don’t answer the door if you hear scary music. For example, the “chee, chee, chee” sound that Jason’s waiting outside with a knife.

Girls, don’t go parking with boys and vice versa.

Don’t pull the cover over your head when you hear footsteps.

Don’t watch scary movies alone.

Don’t move to a deserted hotel in the middle of winter. Just don’t.

Do lock the door when you shower. Yes, I do.

Do carry your cell phone. Home lines will always be cut.

Do get cable, so your child won’t sit in front of the television mesmerized by static.

Do not trust anyone who smiles like Jack Nicholson.

Do expect if you buy a scary mask for Halloween, your kid will sneak up on you while you are doing laundry and not say a word.

Do rent Monsters Inc. this Halloween -- or ET, and cuddle up with your kid.

That seems to be the best defense of all.

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