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31 ways to scare yourself this Halloween–or any time

October 30, 2017

Who needs ghosts and goblins? I can scare the crap out of myself in myriad ways, thank you very much.

We boomers face countless situations that trigger terror—or, at the very least, a shudder and/or “OMG!” utterance. What’s more, we don’t have to wait for Halloween or go to a scary movie for it to happen; these adrenaline-producing situations can occur at any time—particularly as we get older, it seems.

Eleanor Roosevelt is credited with saying, “Do one thing every day that scares you.” So if you actually like that fight-or-flight reaction to being scared, here are a month’s worth of ways to bring it on:

  • Catch a glimpse of yourself in a 10X magnifying mirror
  • Bend over and look at yourself in a mirrored tabletop, realizing that this is what your partner sees when you’re on top
  • Leave home without your smartphone—or worse, lose your phone
  • Imagine being married to #45
  • Forget where you put the car keys and/or house keys
  • Get to the airport and wonder if you turned off the coffeemaker or shut the garage door
  • Accidentally lock yourself out of the house when no one else is home
  • Don’t pay attention to where you’re going, and trip and fall
  • Wear high heels
  • Forget to pay your health insurance premium
  • Run out of wine during a blizzard
  • Discover you neglected to buy more toilet paper for your colonoscopy prep (and the Miralax-Gatorade cocktail already has kicked in)
  • Catch a glimpse of crepey skin (like on your inner-arm or thigh) in direct sunlight
  • Contemplate what’ll happen if the GOP cuts Medicare and/or Social Security
  • Boot up your computer and see the blue screen of death
  • Imagine all the diseases you could have when you’re lying awake at 3:00 a.m.
  • Think about what life might have been like if you’d married the biggest asshat you ever dated (my condolences if you actually did)
  • Look into the cost of buying long-term care insurance
  • Imagine if you had to give up wine
  • Get accustomed to a comfort-height toilet then plop yourself down on one that’s—unbeknownst to you—regular height (it’s a guaranteed adrenaline jolt)
  • Get on a plane without Xanax (personally, one of my greatest terror-inducing situations)
  • Think about how many Americans still believe #45 is doing a good job
  • Imagine what it would be like if you were a black man and you’re pulled over by a cop
  • Forget you had beets for dinner and discover the toilet bowl filled with what you think is blood the next time you have a bowel movement
  • Get home from a day of shopping and discover that your credit card isn’t in your wallet
  • Forget where you parked the car
  • Remind yourself that #45 has the nuclear codes
  • Mistakenly hit “Reply All” when you send a snarky comment meant for one person only
  • Awaken in the middle of the night and wonder if your husband is alive because you can’t hear him snoring breathing
  • Forget to write a lunch date in your calendar and accidentally stand up a friend—then begin to wonder if you’re really losing it

And the #1 way to scare your pants off in this day and age?

  • Turn on the morning/midday/evening news

Which inspires this haiku:

Who needs Halloween?
These days, everyday life can
be scary enough.

So what do you think? What scares the pants off you? Do you like scary movies and the terror they can provoke? Do you get a kick out of Halloween haunted houses or going on roller coasters? Please share


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  • 14 thoughts on “31 ways to scare yourself this Halloween–or any time

    1. Ellen Paris says:

      You made my Monday morning. Literally laughed out loud.

      1. Roxanne says:

        Music to my ears, Ellen! Thank you for letting me know!

    2. Hi Roxanne! HAHAHAHA! You definitely got me laughing this morning….and so very true. I LOVED the way you stuck in some REALLY funny ones like “Imagine if you had to give up wine” along with some seriously scary ones like “Think about how many Americans still believe #45 is doing a good job!” Such a good reminder that we live in scary times but a sense of humor really helps. ~Kathy

      1. Roxanne says:

        Thank you, Kathy. Life without a sense of humor would be REALLY scary, don’t you think???

    3. Victor Carr says:

      32. Hearing your wife say “I don’t need tampons” and forgetting that she’s experiencing menopause.
      33. Hearing your 32 year old daughter call and say “I need to stay with you for a while.”
      34. Hearing your 32 year old son say, “I’ve got to find myself”, while he’s still living with you.
      35. Hearing another “Sign up for your Medicare Supplement Plan” commercial on TV.

      1. Roxanne says:

        Victor, if you think menopause is scary, imagine actually experiencing it yourself! And I can certainly understand why certain utterances by children could be frightening–another reason I’m glad I never had any! Thanks for commenting.

    4. Haralee says:

      And she is back!! You give lots of scary moments. I love the dressing up and seeing everyone in costumes but count me out of going to a scary event, too big of a baby!

      1. Roxanne says:

        I’m with you, Haralee–I’ve never understood the appeal of haunted houses and the like!

    5. Laurie Stone says:

      Roxanne, Those are all scary, especially anything related to #45. Great post for this spooky time of year!

      1. Roxanne says:

        Thanks, Laurie! I appreciate your taking time to comment!

    6. HAHAHAAH…THESE ARE AWESOME!!!

      1. Roxanne says:

        Thanks, Michelle! I take that as high praise, coming from you!

    7. Lynne Spreen says:

      What Ellen Paris said. Happy Halloween.

      1. Roxanne says:

        Thanks, Lynne! Happy Halloween to you, too!

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