November 11, 2010

Road Trip Memories - Why I Used to Be Scared of Haunted Houses

It's been a long time since I have been to a haunted house, so I was thrilled when my friend John agreed to go with me to The Beast and the Edge of Hell in Kansas City on Halloween weekend. But to explain why this is such an awesome trip, I feel I should explain why I haven't been to a haunted house in years.

When I was about 13 or 14, I was supposed to go to a Halloween party at my friend Sarah's house where she told me we would be watching "Halloween." Not wanting to be the one girl who got scared, I decided to watch it the night before. Alone. At night. It was not the smartest idea. Needless to say, it scared the poo out of me and I didn't sleep or turn out the lights all night.

The next night, we went to Allen Ranch in Oklahoma for a haunted hay ride and haunted house before going back to my friend Sarah's house to watch scary movies. I was a little jumpy (okay, I was very jumpy) on the haunted hay ride but ended up having a great time! It was just the right combination of cheesy werewolves and creepy Jason Vorhees with fake chainsaws to make us jump out of our skins and laugh at the same time.

But then we got to the haunted house and things went terribly wrong. There were five of us and we were having a great time, screaming whenever someone leaped out at us and laughing at how easily we had been scared by a guy in a mask. Then we came to a hallway with, you guessed it, Mike Meyers standing in the middle. I was absolutely terrified. At first we thought he was a mannequin but then we saw him tighten his grip on the knife. It's hard to explain just how scared I was. For the last twenty-four hours I had been gripped by a young girl's fear of the masked killer in Halloween. Now he was standing in front of me and the only way out was to run past him. We counted to five and took off.

He chased us. That (insert litany of descriptive swear words here) jerk chased us.

I was officially losing my mind when not only did he chase us, he cornered my friend Jackie and I. Jackie pushed me in front of her and so there I was, screaming and crying, face to face with a masked slasher who seemed to come out of a movie just to torture me. As he stood over me, wielding a knife, I forgot I was in a haunted house. My brain switched into survivor mode and I went from thinking I was a scared little girl in a haunted house to genuinely believing I was a slasher movie heroine who wasn't going to be taken down that easily.

And so I kicked him in the groin. Hard.

I kicked that masked man as hard as I could and took off running (For a cartoon illustration of what this might have looked like, check out R.K. Milholland's Something Positive.) I took out a styrofoam wall and collapsed on the cold dirt as soon as I was outside in a shaking mess to tears and snot. It was a truly pathetic sight. The people who ran the haunted house called my mother to complain about me, when she pointed out that I was a young girl who just had been cornered in the dark by a man with a weapon. She said if they didn't want me to defend myself, then they shouldn't have let a masked man trap me. They thought about it and had to let me off with a warning.

Needless to say, it would be many years before I returned to a haunted house. But I'm happy to say, I went to the Kansas City haunted houses this year and loved them! So stay tuned because next week I'll tell you about my trip to The Beast in Kansas City, the largest haunted house in the United States!



  1. I am actually easily scared a lot. I used to watch such films that contain horror scenes. And after that, I get scared. But in the case of a Haunted house, i am not easily scared of it. Whenever i see some . But i think when i get inside of it i will be scared.

  2. I used to be terrified of horror movies and couldn't watch them, but now they are my favorite kinds of movies and I watch them all the time. Except The Exorcist, that one scene where she goes down the stairs backwards still freaks me out to this day.

    What's great about haunted houses though, is getting scared. When your heart jumps into your throat and you scream with surprise - I always end up giggling just because I feel so alive. :)