Last night, I saw this Lighted Werewolf lawn ornament at Walgreen’s. I decided to take a chance on it. I’ve never owned a Halloween lawn ornament, mainly because of living in apartments, I’ve never had my own lawn. And I still don’t have a lawn. But enough. I’m not going to let that excuse stop me anymore. This thing looked like a total crapfest. At ten bucks, I couldn’t say no.
I could tell the quality of what I was going to get by looking at the box. First, there was the “Screamin’ Value! $10” printed at the top of the box, which means bottom-of-the-budget-bin quality. Then there was the simple fact that it just doesn’t make much sense: a werewolf busting out of the ground. Yeah, skeletons and zombies will bust out of the ground, maybe an occasional ghoul, but a werewolf? I guess you have to assume he was buried there, and somehow managed to dig out, with a beating heart in his hands. Is it his own heart? Did he rip it out of his chest?
Maybe it’s a child’s heart. Like the previous trick-or-treater’s. Yeah. Let’s go with that.
The box always make things look about twenty times better and more exciting than they look in real life, and the thing already looked absolutely terrible on the box. I was in love with it.
It doesn’t even matter what it looks like on Halloween night. Halloween is the great equalizer of all decorations. It doesn’t really matter if you look like a professional haunted house or if you half-assed a couple tombstones out of old beer cases. Kids don’t really care, as long as you got what they’re there for: candy.
Also I’ve learned something about kids. In the previous two years, I lived in a place with a porch where I decorated the whole thing. I learned there’s three types of kids. First, there’s the ones who want to be scared and enjoy playing along. I like these kids the best. They have a great sense of fun.
Then there’s the slick kids who think they’re smarter than everyone else. They strut up to the porch announcing all my decorations look fake and I don’t look real and they’re not even scared. These kids are bastards. And that’s fine, because I was that kid myself once, scoffing at everything. Just try to impress me.
And then there’s the kids that are genuinely terrified, standing at the bottom of the steps visibly shaking, about to erupt in tears. These kids need a freaking Xanax. They’re usually dressed as bees.
This year we live in a gated-apartment complex and won’t get any trick-or-treaters. This place is like a compound with locked doors and checkpoints to pass through. So I’m just going to have to be content with sadly staring out my window on Halloween night, surrounded by fun-sized candy wrappers all over the floor and my lighted werewolf lawn ornament without a lawn.
In other words, I’m about to hit rock bottom—while clutching this thing:
Pretty bad. It resembles a werewolf only vaguely, and in fact, it looks something the dog puked in the yard. But I like it because it’s crappy. These days you can buy decorations that look like they came out of Walt Disney’s basement. This is the no-frills version. The version you buy at the pharmacy. The version that you want to keep an eye on in case the plastic melts and starts a fire.
I love those goggly eyeballs with green irises and the heart that beats. It doesn’t actually beat audibly, but rather the lightbulb inside pulses, flickering on and off. It’s an eerie effect. But that’s the best I can say about it. Overall, the quality is awful.
Here’s a few examples of the fine craftsmanship:
The glue job is visible all over the place. Clumps of the fake fur fell off as soon as I touched it. The thing feels weightless, and the arm falls over even if you breathe near it, making a big hollow plastic CLUD.
I was also disappointed that the werewolf was gray instead of brown. On the box, it looked like the werewolf came in brown fur, and I wondered if I shouldn’t have checked the boxes in the store to get a brown one instead.
“I really wish I got the brown one,” I admitted to the girlfriend, as we stared at the flickering heart.
The girlfriend didn’t respond.
“I just think it would have looked better.”
“Huh,” she said, disinterestedly.
“What do you think? Do you think brown would have been better?”
“Yes, I do think the brown would have looked better.”
Suddenly, I was panicked.
“Really? Do you think I should return it?”
“Yes. I think you should.
“Really?” I asked.
“Yes. Now that I know a brown exists, I can never fully love the gray one.”
“Yeah. It’s not worth it though. I’ll just keep the gray one,” I conceded.
The girlfriend started laughing. She was using one of her children’s therapy techniques on me. Apparently, if you react to an OCD child the opposite of how they expect, they’ll stop obsessing. As in, “yes, I think you need to wash your hands again,” or “I think you should keep checking that door.”
So yeah. Gray is poop. Of course, the only thing that really matters is what it looks like plugged in.
The whole thing is poop. And I like it. I love it. And I still kind of want a brown one.