Saturday, October 24, 2020

Halloween Time with Michael Shinafelt!

It's almost here! Can't believe it's been a year since my last post. I'm always grateful for the Halloween exchange I do annually with my fellow horror buddy and entertainment blogger, Michael Shinafelt. You can read his interview with me here. It's one of the traditions I really look forward to. 

Q: Besides our blog, is there another Halloween tradition you would hate to miss?

A: Having pizza & wine watching horror movies at home, oh wait... 

Q: What was your most creative costume ever? 

A: My Devil costume. It was my version of Satan, as a Leather Daddy with eyeliner, who wields a mean riding crop. 

Q: I love sharing our mutual appreciation for Gerard Butler, but who would you cast for Dracula 2020? 

A: Tom Hardy. Have you seen him in Mad Max Fury Road? Literally all of his sex appeal was on display in Taboo, oh yeah!!!

Q: Coming soon (but not too soon apparently): I know we're both looking forward to Halloween Kills, but what other horror movie are you looking forward to? 

A: The Conjuring 3. The first two Conjuring films, were solid and well made. They both even had genuinely creepy parts in them. The spin-offs from the Conjuring universe however...I'll plead the fifth.

Q: Celebrity Death Match - Horror Version: Bela Lugosi vs. Vincent Price. Who wins? 

A: Damn you! How dare you make me choose! I met Vincent Price once, he was meeting and greeting fans at a 3-D revival screening of House of Wax in Los Angeles. Bela portrayed my favorite horror icon ever, Dracula. I'll go with Vincent only because it was amazing meeting a living horror legend and he was the nicest person.

Q: What would Freddy think if he showed up in one of your dreams? 

A: He would most likely break out his favorite lube based on his bent in Nightmare on Elm Street 2 

Q: Old school game time: F"riend"-Marry-Kill: Dracula, Wolfman, Frankenstein 

A: Easy Peasy, I would marry Dracula because I would live forever and you know the sex would never get boring. I'd kill the Wolfman, seriously what purpose does he really serve?! I would F”riend” Frankenstein, once, it would be electric!

(Because you're my friend, Michael - Hot Frankenstein)

Q: What haunted location would you love to spend the night at? 

A: Although I have been to the Hollywood Roosevelt I have never explored the haunted side of it. I hear Marilyn Monroe's ghost has been know to appear there. I would love to meet her.

Q: Best pandemic look 2020: Hannibal's muzzle, Michael Myers, Samara's hair? 

A: Hannibal for the win! I thought about going with Michael because, hey, he wears a perpetual mask. But Hannibal's look is generic, it doesn't look like William Shatner's face.

Q: Finally - If you were a witch what (or who) would be your familiar? 

A: Stevie Nick's – what better familiar for a witch. Rihannon recommended her to me.

Connect with Michael:
Michael's blog

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Halloween Time with Michael Shinafelt

Trading interviews with my friend, Michael Shinafelt, has become one of my favorite Halloween traditions. He has a sinfully fun blog, and you can check out his interview of me here.

Q: What was your best Halloween ever? A: Kissing a green witch with warts when I was a little tyke, while waiting in line for a haunted house with my Dad. Q: What group is most likely to survive a zombie apocalypse? Mean Girls, Pretty Little Liars, or Scream Queens? A: OMG! Pretty Little Liars for sure! I am a HUGE fan of the show and those women are tough!
Q: What horror movie disappointed you the most? A: The Nun. Seriously how can you F#ck up a horror movie about a Nun?! But they did!
The Nun Blu-ray, Digital Release Date Revealed
Q: What horror monster/celeb would you most like to party with on Halloween, and where would you go? A: The Countess from American Horror Story Hotel. We'd hit the Hollywood Forever Cemetery like she did on the show and pick up some victims for sex and bloodsucking. Q: Your blog is a fun trip into your thoughts with some interesting insights into the people you know and admire (or not). Is there anyone that you would love to interview that you haven’t been able to yet? A: Could someone please channel Marilyn Monroe for me???
Image result for Marilyn Monroe
Q: Besides Halloween, what horror movie is a must see for the season? A: A Nightmare on Elm Street, the original, not the putrid remake. It still holds up in the scare department. Q: If you could spend the night at any haunted location, where would you go? A: The Amityville Horror house. Why? Because the book wasn't scary and I could sit and mock the Hell out of the amateurs possessing that house.
Image result for amityville house
Q: Most awkward Halloween moment? A: Being WAY too drunk. Don't ask me to remember, if you get my drift, because I can't.
Q: Are you going to dress this year? Who are you going out as? A: No dressing up for this guy this year. If I did dress I would go as a demon. You can make your own rules with that costume and get really creative. Q: Who wore it best? Freddy

Or this guy?

A: Freddy of course! He is the only one who could make a Christmas Sweater scary!

Catch up with Michael

Michael's blog

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Child Abduction: A Close Call

It's so important to talk to children about the dangers of abduction, but it's hard to know how far to go. You want your kids to be safe without making them paranoid. Kids are very innocent and trusting, so even after talking to them, it's hard to predict how children will react when approached by a kind stranger. Pedophiles are incredibly good with children and know how to approach them without being threatening.

The horror and tragedy of child abduction is an unfortunate constant in the news today. When I was a child growing up in the 70s, our parents told us never to take candy from strangers, or get into a car with someone we didn't know, but we were sheltered from what could happen if we did. We rarely saw these cases on the news, and when we did, it always seemed like a rare event. Little did we know. 

The following is a close call I had in my own neighborhood when I was in the 4th grade. That's the day I learned just how devious monsters can be.

The One That Got Away

After my mom got remarried, we moved into a brand new house in an isolated subdivision in the summer of ’73. My mom was convinced that the city would eventually make its way out to us, and they’d be sitting on prime real estate. Whatever. I was getting ready to start the 4th grade, and all I cared about were my Barbies, playing outside with my friends, and riding my bike.

My mom’s rules were simple:
·         Don’t go into anyone’s house
·         Come inside when the street lights came on
·         And if she came outside and looked down our street, she’d better be able to see me

The street lights came one way before the sun went down, but I knew better than to break the rules. I didn’t want to give her any reason to ground me, especially when summer was coming to an end. Normally, I dreaded going back to school, but this time, I was actually looking forward to it. We moved around a lot, so every year, I had to say goodbye to the friends I’d made, knowing I would most likely be going to a different school the next year. I always wondered what it would be like to actually have the same friends every year, and go to the same school, like they do on television.

That September, I quickly settled in to my new classroom, where I met my new best friend, Chris. She lived in the duplexes two streets over from my house. We rode the bus to and from school, and quickly became inseparable. The only downside to our friendship was that she didn’t live on my street. That meant that I couldn’t play with her after school. Like my mom, her mom confined her to their street as well.

We put our heads together and finally decided to be brave and ask our moms to let us hang out one Friday afternoon. We decided it might be best to have me come to her house. She said her mom probably wouldn’t agree to her coming to my house, but she might be okay with me coming over. I was afraid to tell her that my mom wouldn’t likely go for any of it.

That evening, I mustered all the courage I had and told my mom our grand plan. I had been talking about Chris almost constantly, so my mom already knew we were close.
“Ok,” she said.
“Ok? Ok?” I couldn’t believe she agreed to let me go.
“Here’s the deal. I have to talk to her mom first. You can go for exactly two hours, and then you come straight home. If you don’t follow those rules exactly, don’t ask to go again.”

I quickly agreed. I thought two hours was a bit short, but I wasn’t going to argue, since I didn’t think she’d let me go at all. I immediately called Chris, so our moms could finalize the details.

We were so excited; it’s all we could talk about on the bus the next morning. When Friday rolled around, we could barely stay seated on the way home. We kept talking about all the things we wanted to cram into our two hours. When she got off the bus, I waved and told her I would see her soon. She giggled and waved back.

I ran home and blasted through my homework. When I was finished, I told my mom I was ready to go. I nodded politely as she again reviewed the rules and the consequences, but my mind was already out the door. As soon as she finished, I ran down my street to the main road. I lived at the end of the block, so it was further than I liked to run, but I couldn’t wait to get to Chris’s house. I turned right and passed the first street. I was smiling like crazy when I got to the second street and turned. I could see Chris about halfway down the block, jumping up and down and waving her hands like mad. I started running again, and she came to meet me. We hugged and giggled, jumping and spinning together.
“C’mon!” she said, grabbing my hand.

She took me inside and introduced me to her mother before we barricaded ourselves in her room. We had the best time. We laughed and talked about Barbies and cute boys at school. Before we knew it, her mom was softly knocking on the door to remind me that my two hours were up. As much as I hated to go, we both knew that if we followed the rules, we would probably be able to do it again. Maybe next time, she could come to my house.

Chris went outside with me, and I walked backwards all the way to the corner of the main street, just so we could keep talking and waving. I didn’t turn around until I couldn’t see Chris anymore. Then I moped passed the first street. I wasn’t in any hurry to get home. When I reached my street, I turned to make the final trek to the end of our block.

My eyes were fixed on the sidewalk, as I kicked at small rocks. Our block was unusually quite. I looked up when I heard a car approaching. A large, white sedan crossed over and pulled up next to me on the sidewalk. The driver reached across the expanse of the bench seat to roll down the window on the passenger side. I bent at the waist when he said “Hi”, so I could get a better look at him. He was a nice looking, middle aged man with sandy blonde hair and a mustache.

He said “I’m so glad I found you. Your parents have been in a car accident, and they sent me to pick you up.” My blood ran cold. My mouth was dry, and it took a few minutes to process what he said.

Of course my mother had always told me never to get in a car with a stranger, but back in the 70s, there were no secret words between parents and kids to identify a safe person to ride with. No one ever told me that a person would lie to get you in a car. I just thought that advice was more for hitchhiking, or when some stranger offered you a ride home. Of course I would say no to that.

But this man was sent by my parents, who had been in a car accident. I didn’t know how badly they had been hurt. What if they were dead? What would I do?
Seeing the panic on my face, the man immediately set out to reassure me.
“It’s going to be ok,” he said in soothing tones. “Get in, and I’ll take you to them.”
I wanted to get in, but something stopped me. I stood up and took a step back. This made the man nervous, and he said we had to hurry. I glanced down the street and could see both of my parents’ cars parked in front of the house. They never parked in the driveway for some reason.

Confused, I looked back at the man and pointed towards my house. “I don’t understand. I can see my parents’ cars from here. How did they get in an accident?”

Without so much as another glance in my direction, the man stepped on the gas and took off, narrowly missing another car as he turned onto the main road without stopping. As I stood there, watching him leave, it finally dawned on me what had just happened. Terror overwhelmed me, and I started running for my house before I even realized what I was doing.

What if he came back? What if I couldn’t make it home in time? What if he caught me? If I could spare a breath, would anyone even hear me scream? My muscles and lungs were burning, but I didn’t stop until I was safely inside my house. I slammed the door behind me and locked it before collapsing on the cold tile. I curled up in a ball, shaking and crying uncontrollably, unable to catch my breath. My mom came running over to yell at me for slamming the door until she saw me. She crouched down beside me and waited for me to calm down, patiently listening while I told her the whole story in ragged pieces. She just held me there for a long time, crying with me. That night, as I hid under my covers, I thanked God that I had been able to get away from that monster. I also said a prayer for the next girl, who might not be so lucky.

For more information and guidelines on how to talk to your children about abduction, please see the following articles.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. Stay safe.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Oh the Horror! Halloween with Michael Shinafelt

Q: If you could pick the theme/setting for the next season of American Horror Story, what would it be?
A: A Shopping mall. George A. Romero nailed it in Dawn of the Dead. Consume mass quantities!

Q: You can bring one thing to the apocalypse. What is it?
A: A way out!

Q: Have you ever read a horror novel you wish could be made into a movie?
A: "Blood Sacrifice" by Rick R. Reed - vampires are my jam!

Q: What horror movie made you laugh the hardest? And which one sent you hiding under the covers?
A: I went to screening of The Nun recently. I couldn't stop laughing. The original Halloween had me afraid of Michael Myers appearing in that ghoulish white mask for most of my teenage years.

Q: If you could interview any serial killer, alive or dead, who would it be?
A: Jeffrey Dahmer

Q: Barbeque with Freddy, camping with Jason, or house hunting with Michael? 
A: Oh, that's a good one! Camping with Jason. Although Michael is my favorite of the three, house hunting sounds like a total drag. Where camping with Jason, now that sounds intriguing!

Q: What social media personality do you think could make an easy transition to horror?
A: WTF?! I am on Social Media, but - there are so many to choose could you pick just one?!

Q: Ever try a Ouija board? If so, what happened?
A; I have. The darkest room in our house was the main bathroom in the hallway. It was pitch black. I was afraid of it for weeks. Thus I used my parents bathroom adjacent to their bedroom.

Q: You get invited to go with a ghost hunting team to spend the night at the Roosevelt Hotel. Do you go?
A: F#ck Yes! I wanna see the ghost of Marilyn Monroe materialize in the renowned mirror she is supposed to. I'd get an interview for sure! I am quite persuasive.

Q: What's your best Halloween story?
A: Seeing The Shinning for the first time since its release in 1980 at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery and realizing that I had never heard the era gone by ghost tell Jack Nicholson to "Kill the N!gger" regarding Scatman Crothers character. How did I miss that the first time around? Thanks PC movement, now that's basically all I remember about the film.

Q: What's the scariest place you've ever been?
A: Well I am going to have to digress back to your AHS question a shopping mall. If you think I am joking I am not. They truly frighten and disturb me. Honestly I can't count how many years it is since I have been to one.

Catch up with Michael

Michael's blog

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Halloween Time with Michael Shinafelt

Love, love, love this time of year! One of my favorite traditions is trading fun questions my best horror mate, Michael Shinfelt. You can catch my interview on his blog here.

ME: Seems like Hollywood has been doing a lot of remakes/reboots. What is your fave horror remake/reboot? What classic horror movie/series do you think they should leave alone? MS: I actually had to Google this subject because to my knowledge I had never seen any, and the one I know I saw with my then boyfriend on cable of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" was terrible. So on my Google list was "John Carpenter's The Thing" way better than the original. Even though it didn't scare me, it was tense. The horror movie series they should leave alone? Too late Hollywood has bastardized them all!

Ew. Nasty. Get the bug spray!
ME: If you find yourself surrounded by zombies, what horror legend would you want at your side? MS: I would love to say Dracula,, because like you, vampires are my favorite. But what good would blood sucking do me with Zombies? I will go with the Wolfman, because he has sharp claws and I'm sure he could behead a few of those mothers! ME: What famously haunted location would you want to spend the night at, and who would you take? MS: The Amityville Horror house. I would take my friend Karen Castrischer. We would laugh ourselves to death before anything in there could scare us there.

Definitely on my list
ME: Have you ever tried to contact the spirit world with a Ouija board? Did it work? MS: Wow! How perceptive. Me and some friends did in the preteen years. Did it work? I know my imagination was the culprit that brought those spirits on. ME: What's your most extreme paranormal experience? MS: Define extreme? lol! I believe my father and my grandmother each visited me one time since their passing. ME: How far would you go to impress your horror crush? MS: I would scour the earth find Dracula an age appropriate (legal) female virgin. Impressive, I know. Dracula if you are reading this call on me. ME: Would you rather see Freddy in your dreams or Norman Bates at a motel?

Think I'll stay at the Holiday Inn, thanks

MS: Norman Bates in a Motel, at least there is a chance I could get laid before I'm slayed. ME: Who is your favorite scream queen? MS: I'm sure you already know the answer to this one. Nobody does it better than Jamie Lee Curtis!
Good call on the wrinkle free material
ME: What was your best ever Halloween costume? MS: When I was a kid I was a witch. Yes, I was obsessed with them as a child. Still am actually. ME: What are your absolute must haves for Halloween? MS: A turban and some make-up.

My thanks again to Michael Shinafelt for giving me one more thing to look forward to in October. Be sure to check out his other blog posts as well!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Halloween Horror Fun with Michael Shinafelt

Several years ago, my fellow horror buddy, Michael Shinafelt, and I started trading off blog interviews in October. It has become one of my favorite Halloween traditions. Check out my interview on Michael's blog here, and be sure to check out his other posts for fun stories about music and entertainment.

ME:  Addams Family or The Munsters?

MS: Addams Family, truly were creepy, kooky, mysterious and spooky. The Munsters were too cartoon like, they had no bite.

ME: What attracted you to horror initially?
MS: Well my Dad and I used to watch them on Saturdays. That's what got me hooked. We would watch all those creature films with Dracula, TheMummy & The Werewolf.

ME: Do you think there are certain traits that horror fans share?
MS: Yes, the ones I know have great imagination, a free spirit and a fierce intelligence.
ME: Classic Frankenstein or hot hero Aaron Eckhart's I, Frankenstein?
MS: Classic Frankenstein all the way! I confess I never saw I, Frankenstein, but I don't really think I need to.

ME: You have a crazy night of horror, drinking, and debauchery. Who do you want to wake up next to?
MS: Well, you just named three of my favorite things, thus, more of the same!

ME: You're making your own horror movie. You can choose any characters from the horror genre. Who's in your dream cast?
MS: A vampire movie, I want to be the main blood sucker. Jon Hamm would be my paramour. Since there needs to be some female energy for good measure let's go with Sharon Stone.

ME: If your life was a Twilight Zone episode, what would the title be?
MS: The Accidental Pheromone

ME: You accidentally watch the videotape from The Ring. You have 7 days...What do you do?
MS: Seven days, huh? That doesn't leave much time to travel so I would do some of the things I haven't done on my bucket list such as parachute out of an airplane. Also act on all my impulses, give into the id. Have sex as much as I could with my special guy. On the last day I would act out being a vampire because not matter what happens to me as a result it's my last day, so whoop it up!

ME: I'm also curious about your take on the creepy clown craze. What do you think?
MS: There are people out there with a fear of clowns already. So this exploits that fear which is so wrong. Then there are impressionable children who haven't really experienced them that are now being taught they are to be feared without making that choice for themselves. My niece had to speak to her son about staying away from clowns because of it. The school required the students be prepped just in case they came around the school playground.

ME: I know we both like to watch bad horror movies for their comedic value. But some are so bad, they aren't even funny. Shock Waves (1977) was one of those for me. It was about a German WWII experiment to create the perfect soldier who could adapt to any environment. When they found out they were losing the war, they sunk the ship carrying the soldiers, but they adapted to water. I called them Gemermen. It was so bad it wasn't even funny. Same with The Hills Have Eyes (2006). What tops your list of horror movies you can unsee?

MS: The remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street. I was watching TV with my then boyfriend, and it was coming up on cable next. He begged me to watch something else as he had seen it, and thought it was terrible. My curiosity got the best of me...boy was it bad! Not even remotely scary or interesting for that matter. Boring all the way, and the re-imagining of Freddy made him look like a charred cat!

Thanks again to Michael for the Halloween horror fun!