My parents divorced when I was ten years old. There were five kids and since I was the oldest it was my responsibility to take on a lot. We lived in a poor area but while my mother worked full time I found a way to make money. My mother did not approve of course, I did all of this between taking care of little sister’s and a brother and schoolwork and chores, cooking, cleaning, watching and disciplining. I also worked every summer for NYC program and gave all my pay to my mother to buy school clothes for all of US. It really helped her and I know it pulled us through some tough times. So…. I had to be creative, we were always bored.
The solution? My plan was simple, the basement, it was dark and dank and SCARY!!!! I put up sheets as dividers, used an old fashioned tape recorder which I would get real close to and make old man breathing noises…. I worked so good at high volume!! Next, I took my sister’s, dressed them up, as well as my poor brother!! He was the baby… Invited next door neighbor’s and friend’s and charged .50$ cents per head!!! Once they came in, I would direct them to the basement, sign’s posted and music playing, I was a very “creative” child and I lived for this stuff..
So, as I led them down the dark, noisy steps I would tell them a story about murders in the old houses out a AX Murder Hall!!!! Before they could even go down one step one of my sister’s would reach up from beneath the stairs and grab the terrified kids….Next I would bring them down, my creepy cave filled with Horror! My poor trained actor’s, my siblings, learned well from me and we would literally scare the “HELL” out of the kids!! Repeating the loud breathing tape recording and acting out there parts so perfectly!! I enthusiastically did several presentations all by myself!
The kids just kept coming back that day, over and over… No-one had much of anything else to look forward to and I became a favorite entertainer for the neighborhood! We would play my scary voices at high volume and jump at them and set up fake Halloween prop’s and most of the kids were so scared they ran up those stairs as if their life’s depended on it. What a pure RUSH! I wish I could go back there… I enjoyed orchestrating and planning the perfect Halloween Celebration. I’m sure those kid’s are still scared of my Haunted House in the basement…