Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Take a Laymon Walk

"That's so dangerous, Eddie.  Even a nice little town like's probably not so nice in the middle of the night.  Probably no place is.  No place that has people, anyway."
And places that don't have people, I thought, probably have other dangerous things roaming the night.
These lines are drawn from Richard Laymon's frightening 2001 novel Night in the Lonesome October.  At the outset of the book, the just-dumped, heartbroken narrator decides to take a long walk late one October night, not realizing he is about to run across a horde of strange and dangerous folks (such as a Spandex-clad hag on a bicycle, a psychotic rapist, and a group of cannibalistic hobos residing under a bridge like some "gang of trolls").

Why do I bring this up?  Because I am encouraging you to follow Laymon's model and make your own nighttime trek this October.  What better way--and time of day--to take in the Halloween decorations spread across your hometown?  Such adornment isn't meant to be fleetingly glimpsed from a passing car, but rather gazed upon, its macabre artwork appreciated.  Moving about in solitary perambulation can only heighten the seasonal frisson, with the night breeze skittering brittle leaves across the sidewalk and seeping chill into your bones, with the adjacent shadows providing potential refuge for every lurking threat imaginable.  Anxious yet undaunted, you press on, braving the outer dark while your neighbors huddle indoors before the ersatz bonfires of their glowing TV screens.  Tirelessly you navigate the labyrinth of avenues, searching for the most ostentatious displays of Halloween spirit, the ritual gestures of the most dedicated yard-haunters.

I, for one, fully intend to venture out by my lonesome one night this October.  So should my posting to this blog come to an abrupt halt later this month, it just might mean that I ran afoul of some toothy trolls while out relishing the local nocturnal scene.

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