Sunday, October 28, 2007

Haunted Manor - Ben's Ideal Level Of Scary

Last night we hit the Haunted Manor in Leesburg VA with friends. It was the first time in years (if ever?) that I'd been to one of these haunted spectacles, so I wasn't quite sure what to expect. It was basically a walk through various parts of a farm with costumed figures jumping out and attempting to get you to wet your pants. You'll be glad to know, I held my pee the whole night.

The good news is that that the event wasn't that scary, so I kept a tiny amount of dignity and won't be needing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder counseling. On the other hand, for $15.00 a head, I expected a bit more drama. Franky, I wasn't scared enough.

I did get to appreciate one of my defense mechanisms when I'm under stress though. Man, do I talk a lot. I must have attempted to carry on a conversation with every zombie and axe murderer that jumped out at me. I expressed everything from hope that they could get past their anger issues, to pleas to take the tasty morsel walking directly behind me (uh, that would be Shira). Hopefully it was entertaining for those around me.

I think this whole experience would probably be good for kids on the older side (like 13-14ish, maybe?). They'll appreciate that the gore, while knowing that it's all fake. As for adults, I would go in knowing that there's not much to be terrified of here.

As if to insure that at least older guys had fun at the event, they had a belly dancer / snake tamer on hand. Me, I was only interested in checking out the snake. Was there a young lady there holding it? I had no idea...


  1. Cool, sounds like you had fun, anyway..

    Next year, I recommend you check out the Dead End Cemetery (warning to you, as a fellow web application developer: the usability and visual appeal of the web site is not representative of the setup of the actual haunted house, so don't let the website scare you away :)).

    It's got a healthy mix of suspense/surprise, confusion (is that a dummy or a real person getting chainsawed?), realistic props, and, most impressive of all, *real* props (such as a vintage embalming table, a real hearse, several coffins, a dentist chair (+ drill, ether mask, etc), x-ray machine, operating table, etc.

    Lots of fascinating stuff, and the owner, Joey ("Freaky Daddy") is friendly and loves to talk about all the stuff.

    Admission is free, but donations are graciously accepted.

  2. Thanks for the recommendation Dave!

    That definitely sounds like the place to try next year.

    Wonder if you're friend would be interested in some programming props of horror: code with goto statements, code that doesn't compile, use of global variables and worst of all, code that's not indented.... ;-)


  3. Noooooooo! The horror!

    Uh but seriously, I'm going to go ahead and ask him about that.

    I think there are enough of us geeks out there that some people would actually understand and appreciate it. Those that did not, would simply see code on a whiteboard, behind other props or something.

    If enough people were 'scared' by that code, then maybe the following year we could have someone dress up wearing a whiteboard, and jump out at people. Hehehe. We're nerds.