Oct 10, 2014

Halloween Web - Howie Decker

I hope everyone is digging these Halloween Web posts. There's plenty more coming leading up to Halloween. I actually may have over booked! I didn't think I had a lot of other posts I wanted to make but now I have to figure out how to fit everything in 21 days.

On the hot seat today is the lead Voltron lion of Underscoopfire empire, Howie Decker.

Who is this Howie guy?

Hi! I'm Howie from UnderScoopFire.com (that place online where you read that thing). We write and podcast about many of the things you dressed up as for Halloween as a kid!

Do you have a particularly fond/funny/scary Halloween story?

My friend's father was the kind of guy who was nice as can be, but always kind of in his own world. One year, he was oblivious to the fact that it was Halloween, and his door was the first we knocked on after cramming home some dinner and hitting the streets. He was in the middle of some sort of fireplace refurbish or renovation project, and was a bit put off that he had to stop to answer the doorbell, so when he flung open the door with a brick in his hand and an irritated look on his face, we fled.

Any favorite costumes from Halloweens past? 

Superman, Mickey Mouse (below), Hulk Hogan, Freddy Krueger- your standard child of the 80s fare. I do however have a LEAST favorite. In 6th grade, I waffled on a costume until it was too late, and decided at the last minute I did in fact want to go to a classmate's Halloween party. Determined to create a suitable last minute costume out of thin air, my mom crammed me in one of my older sister's dresses from the 70s (picture Little House on the Prairie with more flowers). She even put makeup on me. I realize I could have stopped this at any time, but I wasn't a boat rocker as a child, so I went with it. I went to the party and got crushed by all of my classmates. Lesson: don't force your 6th grader to cross dress.

halloween howie decker

What was Halloween like in your neighborhood as a kid? 

I'm from western New York, Rochester to be exact. The thing I remember most about Halloween was how inconsistent it was from year to year, mostly based on two factors: the weather and the location of our house. We lived on a busy main street, so some years we would get zero trick or treaters, and it kind of made sense. The side streets nearby were much safer ground. But based on the low turnout, the next year my parents would buy one bag of candy just in case, and end up having to make a KMart run at 7:15 because we'd already had 40 Trick-or-Treaters. There was no tried-and-true established Trick-or-Treating route in our neighborhood. The weather also played a factor, I remember Trick-or-Treating in the snow some years, with a huge coat under my costume, and other years wearing shorts.

What do you do to celebrate today?

We lived in a third floor apartment for the last 4 years, so we didn't even buy candy to hand out, as no one would come to our door. We do have two little ones though, so it has been fun to chaperone Trick-or-Treat expeditions. This year will be our first at our new place, and word is we live on an excellent Halloween street. Looking forward to it!

Do you have any yearly rituals? 

I've never had pop culture/entertainment rituals for Halloween like I do for Christmas. Off the top of my head I can think of 3 movies we make it a point to watch every year at Christmas time and tons of music, but Halloween comes and goes without as much fanfare in our house. Hopefully as the kids grow their excitement for the season will help create some new traditions! I can say with some degree of confidence that we'll be watching Toy Story of Terror again this year, and I will say that if I catch any of the Roseanne Halloween eps on television I don't pass them by.

What do you think it is about Halloween that keeps it in our hearts as we get older?

One thing we as social creatures love to do is share. As grown ups, we get on our various social media and share our favorite shows, movies, music, videos, pictures, quotes, etc. In the pre-social media era, Halloween was our one chance to share what we loved with our entire social network. Choosing what you dressed up as was perhaps the biggest decision of the year, as it was your one chance to share something you loved with the entire neighborhood at once. Also, candy.

Inside the Spookster's Studio

The worst thing to get while trick or treating was an apple!
My favorite thing to get was Three Musketeers

Where can people find you online?

 THANKS FOR HAVING ME!  You can follow me on Twitter @HowardTheDeck, and our retro-pop culture website on Twitter @underscoopfire and Facebook page.

Thanks for taking the time to join in our spooky soirre!

Thanks for having me. Happy Halloween!

Before you head off to your next house, swing by Halloween Mixes.
They're posting a themed mix album every day of the month!

And of course, check out all the other folks participating in the Countdown to Halloween!

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