Sunday, October 23, 2022

Spoopy Time

I was introduced to the word “spoopy” by my daughters, who are closer to the heartbeat of current internet-driven popular culture than I am. Of course, there’s nothing “current” about spoopy, whose origins can be traced back to 2009. You know, eons ago.

Essentially it means something which is both funny and spooky at the same time. At this time of year, that’s about my speed. I’m not a horror movie fan, and I wouldn’t be caught dead in a “Field of Screams” experience. Give me a chance to walk in the dark, on sidewalks of crunchy leaves, with some excited trick-or-treaters and a chance to watch the Charlie Brown Halloween Special. That’s more my cup of tea.

Ellicott City has Ghost Tours, which you’ve probably heard about. I don’t know if they’re pleasantly eerie or terrorizing in a way that keeps you awake for days. I suspect it’s the former. I bet they get a lot of business this time of year. But did you know about:

"The spooky van in the Hmart parking lot" should be added to the ghost tours of Ellicott City. I swear I thought my kid was making this up until a few months ago.

Photo from Twitter

What do we think, friends? Spoopy or downright creepy? It could really go either way, in my opinion.

I’ve noticed multiple inquiries online from folks who want to take their kids to “see the Halloween decorations” and asking where the best houses are. Is that a thing now? I fully support heading out to see Christmas lights, but, an occasional house decked out for Halloween doesn’t justify those kinds of seasonal tours, in my opinion.

Or does it? Maybe I am behind the times.

My last offering may not feel spooky or spoopy to you. Hear me out. Have you ever seen one of these?

Photo from Downtown Columbia Partnership 

I haven’t actually ever seen anyone riding an e-scooter in real life. But I do see them lying around, riderless, here and there around my neighborhood. Apparently that’s what you are supposed to do when you are done with them: just leave them.

So how do they get home? (Insert spooky music here.) 

My first thought is they all emit location signals so that someone with a truck goes around every night, collects them, and returns them. That seems the most common sense answer. On the other hand, that means that someone is using fossil fuel so that you can zip around on a battery charged conveyance. Seems counter-intuitive.

Another possibility: every night at midnight the scooter company sends out a signal to all the wandering scooters which directs them to return home.

Creepiest possibility: the scooters are sentient. They wait for the best opportunity to move, unseen, among us. They are not inactive. They are merely biding their time.

What do you think? Are you a fan of truly scary Halloween offerings or do you prefer your spookiness with a side of spoopy? Where’s the best place for Halloween fun in Columbia/HoCo?

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