The Amityville Horror Gingerbread House

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Hello all and welcome to another long-awaited entry to the Holiday Hell Show. This weekend I decided to step outside of both my comfort zone and my man card zone to construct a gingerbread house. I am not very crafty but when inspiration strikes I try not to ignore it because who knows when or if it will strike again. On Saturday, I listened. Here’s what happened.

For the longest time I have been a huge fan of Ray Keim and the website, Haunted Dimensions. All you need is thick weight paper, a color printer, some glue and scissors and with a little kindergarten recollection, you will have a 3-D model of your favorite horror setting. It’s the nerd in me that makes me want to stand on street corners and shout the website url over and over until the government wraps me in blankets and leads me into a padded van.

So, on Friday I was in my office struggling for something different to cover for the website because, that is what I should be doing at work, right?! Then it hit me. Kinda like this. Why don’t I use Haunted Dimensions as the model for a gingerbread house? It had to work. It just had to! And what better design than the famous 1975 horror classic, The Amityville Horror. It was a movie that terrified me as a child and fascinated me as an adult.

HOOOOKAY! Now, I have never successfully constructed a gingerbread house. The last time I attempted was in Tiger Scouts back when Ronald Reagan was in his first term so it has been awhile. I still remember it today. We had to cover an orange juice container with icing and stick gram crackers to the sides to make it look like a house. I can’t remember the details but I do remember having to be hosed off in the driveway of the scout parking lot. So, this project manager doesn’t have a very good legacy of success.

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Here’s the plan. I have the layout of the Amityville House and in my mind, all I had to do was cut out the pieces, build the model, find gingerbread flat sheets, paste them on top and decorate as I desire. Seems easy, right? Yeah, no way. First problem was the fact that no one sells flat sheets of gingerbread. I don’t know if I made this up in my mind but I could have sworn that’s a thing. It is not.

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So, I had to bake the sheets from mother furkin’ scratch. I’m not lying, I had the iPad on the counter with YouTube guiding me through the basics of gingerbread making. There were eggs and warm butter and flour. It was Hell.

WHEN YOU SAY BAKING I SAY FUCK!

BAKING!

FUCK!

BAKING!

FUCK!

But, I made it and it actually came out okay. The size was right and using the model for shapes worked out surprisingly well. I only burned myself four times which is as rare as getting hit by a meteorite especially when pans are involved.

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So, while waiting for the building materials to cool I set out to construct the model. I figured it would be easy to just glue the gingerbread pieces to the model rather than thinking silly thoughts like making this 100% edible. I was going for looks here. Plus, if people knew what went into my baking procedures, they wouldn’t dream of eating this.

The model is very easy to build but unfortunately, I fail at scissor. I always have because it is half patience and it is half skill, both of which I neither have nor desire. So, not all pieces fit perfectly. There were some jamming and cursing that went into the skeleton but eventually it did come together. After all, it would be covered by gingerbread, frosting and Satanism.

Funny story, while I was finishing the model I heard a ruckus right outside the house. Immediately I went in search of my cat because she isn’t fixed and has been desperately trying to escape to find a male suitor. Well, somehow she succeeded. I don’t know how she did it but she did and was having loud cat sex in the driveway. Let me lend you advice, my friends. Never break up cat sex. There will be blood. And there was.

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A bit later after bandaging both hands and placing my cat in solitary confinement, I was back to proceed with construction. I figured the best way to glue the walls of the house was to keep constant pressure and no better way to do so than place four brake rotors around the structure because they can at least do something until I put them on my car. That’s another project.

It worked so freaking well I can’t even say more. Things like this never work well for me. Usually I get this far only to place kick the project in the backyard and go back to the couch to sulk in the warm glow of cable cooking shows. Maybe my crafty ways are coming back. I mean, my Christmas Sweater article from 2008 still gets like 600 hits a day thanks to Pintrest.

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Oh the roof was the part I was having the most anxiety about. It’s an odd New England style home and that type of roof doesn’t translate in Candy Land. I baked four gingerbread strips and glued them to the model roof. Thank God I didn’t already add the model roof because there was no way for the strips to stick at that angle. So I placed them on the roof model and pressed them for an hour. This project came together like lamb and tuna fish. I don’t get it. This never happens.

Now that the glue was dry and the structure sound, it was fun time. The decorating. I’ll be honest with you, after the long process I had just building this, I gave decorating a half-hearted effort. I used Twizzlers for the roof, vanilla icing for sticky spackle, pretzels for storm gutters, caramel squares to build the chimney, Tootsie Rolls for the logs to keep George warm and cut marshmallows in half to give a snowy appearance. All-in-all, kinda shitty. Completely forgot the bleeding walls that Edie suggested. That would have been awesome.

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So here you are. The house George Lutz claimed to be haunted by the same demonic forces which drove Ronny DeFeo to murder his family. Not exactly the Christmas spirit but I am not sure anyone has attempted to turn this iconic house into a jolly gingerbread house. But I have!

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Oh yeah, and cat? Eat ass.

And thanks to Dinosaur Dracula who does this stuff one million times better and funnier. This was inspired by my long love of that site and X-E. Thanks for reminding us it is okay to be a kid and enjoy the little things. Cheers!

6, 6, 6 Scary Scenes Mwaa Haa Haa

For years horror movies have always been the preferred choice in my household. I can’t tell you why, but also I can’t tell you why insane hot sauce is my condiment for everything. I guess it is that “in the moment” discomfort I crave. Sadistic or masochistic, you say? Maybe. All I know is that on a rainy and cold night, you will find me on a couch, eating pizza sprinkled with Dave’s Insanity sauce watching The Exorcist 666 times because it keeps getting funnier every time I see it.

Another reason I watch horror movies over, let’s say, comedies or dramas is because they stick with you. Especially certain scenes. You never come home at night from watching Die Hard 5 in theatre and race to turn on the lights because you are worried Bruce Willis is behind the couch, do you? No, you don’t! I want to feel that twinge of fear, that moment when you have to squint your eyes because if you only see 30% of a scene it might not be as scary, that feeling of waking up at 3:33am and wanting to pee but there is no way you’re putting your feet on the floor. I love it all and spending $15 at the theatre should involve a bit of residual entertainment.

Today, I want to share six scenes from amazing films that have and always will stick with me. To some, they may not be scary at all but for some reason they give me the chills. I can’t tell you if I over analyze or I really am just a wuss, but take a gander and see if you share my moments in cinema scares.

The Haunting 1963

Oh boy this one got me. I remember back in 2006 I was sitting on the couch, flipping through the channels when I stumbled across the opening title of The Haunting. Intrigued by the title, I stayed to give it a shot even though it was a black and white movie and to a nitwit like I was, that almost certainly means “not scary”. Man oh man, I could not have been more wrong. The whole movie was a creep fest and when the girl I was dating at the time came through the front door, I almost jumped out of my skin.

This scene was by far one of the most creep-out parts even modern horror films of the day could not hold a candle to. From the giggling to the inaudible chattering behind the door, it still makes my hairs stand on end. Watch and see!

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Of course if you are a fan of the horror genre you have most likely seen the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. If you have not, go back to your Sandra Bullock movies. (I kid) This film has plenty of disturbing and creepy images but the very beginning always made this one, the film that separates itself from the pack. Corpses posed on a tombstone with a radio news bulletin in the background paints a macabre scene and swearing off ever going to rural Texas.

The Blair Witch Project

Why did this film get such a bad rap? For the life of me I cannot understand why? The actors were amazing, there was a constant sense of hopeless dread and above all, the disorienting sounds in the woods insuring that going camping will never be the same again. A particular scare that has never left me was the sounds of dead children playing right outside the character’s tent. I actually felt their panic and when they bolted from the tent, it was hard to tell acting from true terror. Turn off the lights and turn up the speakers. Let your imagination do the rest.

The Amityville Horror

It’s said that this is a true story and to a kid that always amplifies the scare factor by ten but besides all the hype, the ghost/demon/rocking chair enthusiast, Jodi really was what kept the closet light on. This was my first real horror movie that didn’t rely on the Universal monster magic or special effects. A simple empty rocking chair moving on its own and glowing eyes  will paralyse me far easier than some a dude tearing his face off. Maybe I easily impressed?

This scene easily takes a top spot. Be quiet, I don’t wear a dress!

Ghost Story

I grew up without cable so I was always a little tardy to the party when it came to movies that were taboo to a young boy’s eyes. However, my grandparents did and a fateful day in 1984 I channel surfed right into this little ditty. For the first half of the movie, Ghost Story, you see a terrifying specter take revenge on old men in this type of “BOO!” fashion. It worked on me. I have a specific memory of actually running away from the TV.

The Brood

This was a movie that came later in my adolescence though I have always known about it. Although I didn’t find the movie to be all that scary, the scene in the kitchen was shot so perfectly, I think about it at least twenty times a day. Usually about wooden hammers. I can’t tell whether it’s the look on the children’s faces or the fact there isn’t a sound made before all Hell breaks loose.

Maybe it’s kids in snowsuits? I don’t know.

Well, there you have it! The six creepy scenes that I think about right when I begin to fall asleep.

What are yours? Do you have a movie that surprised you or took you off guard? Share them with me either here, Facebook or Twitter! 

Sleep tight.

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