Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Fright Stuff of Screams

I have an omnipresent need to create things for my haunt. creatures, gizmos, sets, and all the tweaks my chaotic mind can conjure. Most of the props I use for DarKWolF ManoR are hand made. When I originally started making props (nearly ten years ago), I believed that if I made my own props I would save a lot of money. In retrospect I guess this could be true. . .sometimes. Most often the desire for "perfection" means that more money should be spent in order to acquire the materials that are needed to make a CREATION come to LIFE. The gratifying aspect is that these things are hand made. I can step back and realize that like Dr. Frankenstein before me, I have created something that will have a life of it's own.
To facilitate my constant need to create, God has invented the Home Improvement Store. 95% of what makes my haunt work and keeps it working comes from Home Depot or Lowe's. I do get many specialty items from Ebay vendors and various other merchants.
There are however, a few indispensable items that I could never haunt without. Liquid Nails, bailing wire, drywall screws (in various lengths
), zip ties, spray paint, and extension cords, lots and
lots of extension cords. Without the prior items I would not have a haunt. It is a great thing to visualize something in the human mind, commit it to paper, obtain the supplies that are needed, begin the building process, and see the project come to fruition.

It is said that the world is held together by duct tape. Not my world buddy!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Fossilized Remains of First Politician

National Geographic Magazine

An archeological team, digging in Washington DC has uncovered 10,000 year old bones and fossil remains of what is believed to be the first politician.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Only 60 days and then I can rest.
nope, no rest till Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Place For My Stuff

I really do have skeletons in my closet!

George Carlin once had a very successful comedy routine based on the premise of where to put all the stuff we acquire in our lives.
"Actually this is just a place for my stuff, ya know? That's all, a little place for my stuff. That's all I want, that's all you need in life, is a little place for your stuff, ya know? I can see it on your table, every body's got a little place for their stuff. This is my stuff, that's your stuff, that'll be his stuff over there. That's all you need in life, a little place for your stuff. That's all your house is: a place to keep your stuff. If you didn't have so much stuff, you wouldn't need a house. You could just walk around all the time. A house is just a pile of stuff with a cover on it."
While this is a humorous way of looking at the obviousness of it all there in lies the problem. As we acquire more props, and sets we quickly lose our "normal" homes to our haunt. In the span of several months prior to Halloween, I annually take all my patio furniture, my living room furnishings, and dining room furnishings to storage. My garage and all its contents go to storage as well. conversely, 90% of my haunt accoutrement's come out of storage and come to live with me for 5-6 months. Finding a place for my stuff and my haunt stuff is, at this point solved by renting a 10x20 storage garage, utilizing rafter space in the garage, using back side yard space, and a closet under my staircase. I won't see my leather couches again until Thanksgiving.

Hey, at least I admit that I have skeletons in my closet!

Are you sure you want to be a home haunter?

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Integrity, Dedication, and Commitment

In my world, when I say I'm going to do something, I do it. I am a man of my word. I may show up late, but I show. I believe that "a man is only as good as his word." That saying also applies to the opposite gender. OK, that being said. Why are there so many FLAKY PEOPLE in Southern California? What more needs to be said?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Dark Wolf Haunt 2006


Local Ghouls and Zombies Union

Always thought it would be great to have a Ghouls Union.

Putting My Walls Up

August 25, 2008 (supplemental)

People often ask me when I'm going to start putting DarKWolF Manor together. My response is based on what time of the year it is. It is now August, and like most other haunters I am confident in knowing that I have been working on the haunt for four months already and on the flip side plagued with the knowledge that I only have two months left.

Mike and Roshan

Yesterday we began putting up walls. I find a certain amount of levity in the task of putting up walls. Most of my life I've been accused by women of having my walls up.

Not to worry, I take them down for six months out of the year.

Remembering Where That Screw Goes

August 25, 2008

I find year after year as we "raise the bar" on our production; it is increasinly more and more important to chronicle what we do. Alot of projects are done with good intentions, but end up being put together by the seat of our pants.
Taking pictures is a great way to document how things are constructed and where they might be placed for future haunting endevours. Taking time, when sets are being struck and labeling the order things are placed, is a good way to save time and grief when setting it up again.

Blackhawk Heli Encounter

Captain's Blog, Scar Date

I'm sure every home haunter has had experiences during set-up that might be considered "weird", "out of the realms of the norm"; after all what we are doing is just that. One afternoon redefined that feeling for me. It was Monday October 9, 2006. I was tweaking a set that I built in the backyard when I began to hear a large helicopter getting closer and closer to my neighborhood. When it sounded like the helicopter was just over my house, I came out of the set to find a Black Hawk helicopter was hovering only a few hundred feet above my backyard. I could see the faces of the crew. I waved once, flashed a peace sign, and went back to my business. The Black Hawk flew off shorty thereafter. I spoke with a few people about the experience and started to think that my haunt must be a concern when seen from the above. I am surrounded by military establishments and I could only imagine that with 30' of camouflage on one end of my set, and a mock corridor on the other, I probably looked like I had a SAM site on my property.

It is funny, the itch to have a haunted house, and the constant need to scratch that proverbial itch. In doing so it is often easy to overlook what haunting might look like to the rest of the world.

Anyway kiddies; you may get scared at DarKWolf Manor, but Homeland Security and the military are close by to keep you safe.