Thursday, October 11, 2012

What Haloween Means To Me Day 7: Frank Browning

Frank Browning is a name I'd heard quite a bit, and I'd seen a lot of his online oeuvre, but I never met the dude until my homie Dr. Jimmy Terror (who we'll hear from tomorrow) put us in touch recently about this very event.  I'm glad he did too, because in addition to being a really cool cat, Frank is a freakin photoshop wizard.  My personal favorite stuff I've seen of his would have to be his 8-bit art.  Go HERE to see what I'm talking about.  His incredible work can be seen all over Dr. Terror's House of Horrors, Back Online Back On Duty, Freddy in Space, and some of the other "best of the best" corners of the horror blogosphere. I'm proud to say that I can now count Son of Celluloid as a place graced by his talents.  He made that killer "What Halloween Means To Me" banner you see up there. He came in at the last moment when I was freaking out trying to put this thing together, banged that piece of art out in no time flat, and immediately put my mind at ease; 'cause I knew this event would at least look good.  That makes him one of the MVPs of the countdown in my book.  In addition to his ghastly graphic greatness, his writing has appeared on Dr. Terror's House of Horrors and The Liberal Dead.  Frank went in a "What I Love About Halloween" direction, so without further ado, I present to you...

What I LOVE about Halloween…

I can count on one finger what I love about Halloween… Everything.
Invented by the Germans in 1904, they named it Samhain, which of course in German means “a whale’s vagina.”  I'm sorry; I was trying to impress you. I don't know what it means. I'll be honest; I don't think anyone knows what it means anymore. Scholars maintain that the translation was lost hundreds of years ago…
Seriously though, Halloween is my Christmas. Few things excite me as much as the thought of costumes and candy (from a child-like and/or commercialized point of view LOL). I’m also EXTREMELY interested in the True meaning of Halloween from a Traditional and/or ritualistic stance.

Before I get into the meat n taters, I want to take this opportunity to show my displeasure in the people who claim that Halloween is "Evil." I don’t want to say that they are stupid-heads, but just know that that is what I am thinking. Halloween is only evil if people make it that way. I don't know anyone who has gone to Hell for eating candy. Ya mean? Anything is evil if you make it that way. There is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING wrong with Halloween! So, shut uppa you face-a!

Let me give you an extremely truncated lesson on Halloween.

Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain.
The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.

SO, if anything, Halloween was celebrated to ward off evil, not welcome it. So, for all the F-Tards out there who think its evil without looking at the facts: “Get the Hell out my face and buy your kid some candy, you cat-sodomizer!” You know the feeling you get when you accidentally stick a finger up your ass twice? That’s how I feel about people who don’t like Halloween. ‘Nuff said.

Ok, now that my rant is over, let’s get decadent…
I never really thought about it before I sat my fat ass down to write this article, but my love for Halloween has never changed.  However, the reasons I love it have changed dramastically over the past 3 decades and 1 year (That means I’m 31 years old). So, let’s explore together, True Believers!
As a kid, I loved Halloween because it represented all the forbidden fruits (huge piles of candy, scary movies and butt-pleasures) that I so longed for at that age but didn’t have steady access to. It felt like I had committed a crime and successfully escaped as I sat in front of my bedroom door, watching Friday the 13th with the volume turned way down so I could hear if my Mom came to see what I was watching. It was the thrill of the hunt I suppose that excited me so. Same goes with sweets. I didn’t know what a cookie was until I was in grade school, so when I got candy back then, it was a big deal. It’s the same feeling you get when you crank your Justin Beiber LP’s up to 11. You know it’s wrong for your ears but it makes your lady-parts feel so right. I digress. I mean don’t get me wrong, I loved Trick Or Treating as a kid, but I was already a Horror Cinephile by that age.
Then into my late-teens through my late 20’s I became hopelessly obsessed with all things horror. The fruit was no longer forbidden.  At one point, I was a self-proclaimed Urban-Legendologist. I read up on that shit until I was afraid to do anything. I was afraid that I would have Cockroaches or Spiders coming out of a zit on my ass while watching Gerbils being removed from Rod Stewart by Richard Gere and drinking my needle-infested AIDs Pepsi while answering calls coming from inside my house by the poodle in my microwave. It was bad. I was extremely fascinated by kids getting poisoned and razor-bladed to death by the Halloween haul and so forth. Once I realized that the dog in the microwave, the man making calls from upstairs, the man under my bed who licked me (twice), the gerbils in celebrity ass and the Spider-Roaches in my ass-zit were either all fake or all dead (I’ve yet to find a conclusion as to which), I moved on with my life.

Then, much like Sam from ‘Trick ‘r Treat’ I began a quest to make sure that as many Halloween rituals were upheld as possible while watching as many horror flicks as humanly possible at all times. This was a very cathartic time for me. Despite what parents and teachers and other ignorant authorities tell you, watching these movies DOES NOT MAKE KILLERS. In fact, they have saved many many lives in my experience. Watching horror flicks always helped me rid the need to go into a Wolverine Berserker-Rage and murderize all the people whom (in my opinion) deserved it.

“……….I got a rock…”

Now, as I enter my 30’s, things have changed. I’m happily married and Sarah (my wife) and I have very recently welcomed our son Liam (Lemur Baby) into the world. As with Christmas, Halloween is no longer about me/us, it’s about Liam. I absolutely can’t wait to see his thrill of getting candy and (eventually) watching Horror Films (he’s just over 4 months old at the time of this post). I wonder what kind of movies he’ll like and what kinds of costumes Sarah and I will be swooned into getting for him and what type of candy he goes for. Daddy likes the chocolate persuasion while Mommy is of the Nerds/Sour Patch Candy school of thought. 

Our son, Liam Charles Browning
(If you can look at this baby and honestly say it’s not the most adorable thing you’ve ever seen, I’ll French-Kiss your dog’s ass…twice)

But, as they say: “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” I honestly have no damn idea what that means, but it sounds good to me and hopefully fits in this retrospective shit I’m waxing here. I still Love watching ‘Scaries’ (My term for Horror Films) and eating all the candy I can get my hands on – just ask Sarah. Oddly enough, my sweet tooth is the same size as my scarred ass (that’s a story for another time). But I guess now comes the time for me to live vicariously-ish through Liam as I watch him grow and experience all the groovy things that Halloween has to offer. I look forward to educating him on this Holiday properly.

So, in 10 years, who knows what I will love about Halloween and why? But 1 thing is for sure; my love for this season will never fade. Now, shut your ass and go watch something scary while eating a Reese’s Pumpkin or Bat or some shit.

19 days 'til Halloween, Halloween, Halloween.  19 days 'til Halloween, Silver Shamrock.


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