Being a child of the 1980s, I was around for a large amount of urban legends that dealt with Halloween. Many of them still exist today, oddly enough, and there have even been new ones added since I was a kid. Since my childhood, it seems like there has always been groups of people that have spread misinformation and rumors about Halloween. Maybe its the spooky time of year or that many people still feel that Halloween, itself, is a dark holiday that shouldn’t be celebrated. The truth is, there are more urban legends about things that happen on Halloween than there are about trick or treating.
Halloween is by far a kids night. You get to dress up in a costume and walk around asking for candy. Who absolutely could not love that. When I was a kid, there were a always those neighbors that believed they needed to be mindful of the dental health of children and opted to give apples instead of candy. Which leads us to our first urban legend.
Razor Blades Hidden in Apple
10. Razor blades hidden in apples. Personally, I feel like this was started by children who did not want to eat fruits for Halloween. This one is largely considered to be false. Let’s look at the scientific reason behind it. Have you ever cut an apple? Once air starts to hit the inner flesh of an apple it quickly starts to discolor. This should be a pretty noticeable give away. From 1972 – 1982, every case of reported razor blades in apples were found to be a hoax perpetrated by kids seeking attention.
9. Your kid’s candy may be laced with drugs or poison. Most of us have probably heard this one. During my childhood, following all of the razor blades in apples, needles, and laced candy, the local hospital actually set up to xray your Halloween haul and even test for drugs. These were also mostly myths. Okay, you’re setting there saying that you knew someone from your childhood knew someone that had this happen to. Psst, that’s exactly how urban legends happen. A lot of this happened in the 80s when there was a case where someone had laced Tylenol with cyanide. This then bled over to the Halloween season. One of the biggest stories about laced candy came when a child died from poisoning in the 70’s. A father led a search with authorities to find out who had given his child Pyxi Styx laced with cyanide. In the end it was proven that the father actually had taken out more life insurance on his son days before he died and through research they were able to prove that he had killed his own son. He hoped to be able to get a huge insurance payout, instead he received a huge lethal injection in 1974. Since then it has been shown that most of the poisoned candy came from parents trying to win one over on the system. Just remember that there are plenty of things already wrong with candy, that it doesn’t need extreme help from drugs or poison.
Pop Rocks Can Kill You
8. Pop Rocks with Soda can cause your stomach to explode. Some of you may not have had the luxury of having Pop Rocks as a kid. This little sugary confection had a close tie to Rice Crispies. You would tear open the packet and pour them into your mouth. Once they hit your saliva they would start crackling like crazy. I loved these, so much. We always dared each other to see how many we could get in our mouths. This always prompted the dare to pour a whole packet in our mouth, take a large drink of a soda and swallow them. The urban legend circulated that if you did this it would cause your stomach to explode and kill you. I remember being afraid of this so much. What broke my fear was the one time I actually had Pop Rocks in my mouth and took a drink of soda. The fizzy drink caused the popping to go into overdrive. On one fateful day someone scared me and caused me to swallow what was in my mouth. I remember being terrified I was going to die. I kept waiting for the excruciating pain and explosion. Waiting and worrying and then? Of course I died, that’s why I am sitting here writing about urban legends. Nothing happened, a little tingle on the way down and a belch. That was it. Urban Legend debunked.
LSD Laced Temporary Tattoos
7. Temporary Tattoos being laced with LSD. This little gem has been around since the 1970s and revolved around drug dealers putting LSD on temporary tattoos and handing them out to unsuspecting kids. I have heard of trying to grow your business, but it would seem more logical to create a client base that would actually have money to buy your product afterwards. As a kid I loved these lick ’em and stick ’em tattoos. The only high I ever received was putting them on and hiding them from my mother. Now I have many permanent tattoos. I guess they did create some kind of addiction. There is not evidence that this actually ever happened. Since schools where the main ones passing out the warnings for this little myth, maybe it was their way of ensuring that kids were not being influenced into what they considered counter culture behaviors.
Killer Clowns On The Loose
6. Killer Clowns on the loose. No, I am not talking about Killer Klowns from Outer Space, which is one of my favorite movies. Many people have a phobia of clowns and this also tends to be a popular costume for Halloween. There is also the tie to John Wayne Gacy and it probably doesn’t help that there are tons of Haunted Attractions that monopolize on using clowns in their venue. In 2016 there was an outbreak of creepy clown sightings in the United States that ranged from New York to Florida. There are even drove Images that captured some of them . Some of these sightings also led to people being attacked by those dressed up as Bozo. Other than Gacy, there have not been any reported murders by Killer Clowns, but I can definitely see why people would be scared of them.
Satanists Killing Black Cats
5.Satanists killing black cats. This urban legend stems from a christian mindset and some very old superstitions. Black cats are thought of as bad omens and things to be avoided and add that the devil is often used as a scapegoat (wow bad pun, there) for many evil deeds. There have been no reports that show black cats are killed more at Halloween than any other time of year. One thing to keep in mind is that the majority of Satanists do not actually believe or worship the Devil. That is not to say there aren’t devil worshipping cults out there and plenty have been at the root of some dark things, just not on this urban legend. Historically, it wasn’t devil worshippers who sacrifice black cats. There are stories of Druid priests sacrificing animals during the time when we celebrate the now, Halloween. Black cats were often seen as hosts for evil spirits that were taking away the long days of sunlight and warmth. To combat this, they often throw those vessels into fires as an offering and a warning to evil spirits. This all depends on the sources you read, so please don’t send me hate mail telling me I am wrong.
Kidnapping Is Higher At Halloween
4.Kidnappers are out to snatch kids more at Halloween. Have you ever wondered where the tradition of Trunk or Treat came from? You guessed it, this urban legend. Okay, a little bit of truth here, kids are abducted at Halloween and those stories gain media attention like wildfire. It was churches that decided to start this tradition so that it would happen in controlled environments and limiting the ability for people to easily single out children. The truth is that kids are no more liable to get abducted at Halloween than they are at any other time of year. This one is easily remedied by parents joining their kids while the trick or treat or being close by.
Thirteen Story Haunted House
3.Can you make it through all thirteen floors of this haunted house alive? This one was also called the Chimera House. The story goes that teens are out for a night of fun on Halloween and stumble across an abandoned multi-story dwelling where they are told it is a haunted house and they can enter for an X amount of money. They will get money back for each scary floor they complete. The trick is that no one has ever made it to the top or came back from this haunted house. It is reported that this legend first appeared in Pennsylvania but has become much more popular in the Midwest or far southern states. These are places that can still have very rural and unknown places. Sounds like a perfect place for a house full of killing things. To this day, people still search for this illusive legend house. It remains intact all these years because of haunted attractions like 7 Floors of Hell in Cleveland, Ohio.
2. Bloody Mary. We all should know this one. Say her name three times while staring into a mirror in a darkened bathroom and she appears behind you. How many of us have tried this on Halloween because it is supposed to be the night where spirits are easiest to call upon. I can remember, as a child, daring my sister to do it or her daring me. We would stay with our cousins and the same dares would happen. We all supposedly knew someone who knew someone who died trying this. It evoked such fear in us that we would never want to attempt. Honestly, at one point I was so enthralled with this urban legend that I tried it by myself, in a darkened bathroom with a couple tea light candles burning just waiting for her to show up to see what would happen. That has probably been one of the biggest disappoints I have ever had staring into a mirror. The good part about this story is that it did inspire movies like Candyman and that is so much better than the original urban legend.
And now, for the long awaited number 1.
Halloween Falls On Friday the 13th
1.Halloween will fall on Friday the 13th this year. If I have to even begin to explain why this is an urban legend… never mind let’s just say it. Halloween always falls on the 31st of October, I can tell you that I see this post on Facebook every year and there is always someone saying “OMG this is going to be the scariest one,” or something similar. To make it a little more clear, Friday the 13th can only happen on the 13th. That is unless you decide to stream it on Halloween. If that’s the case, then remember this one thing… Kill, kill, kill, ma, ma, ma. To explain that one, check out this link to where the sound effect in that movie came from. Friday the 13th Iconic Whisper Sound Effect.
I hope you enjoyed these Top Ten Halloween Urban Myths. If you have some that I didn’t mention drop me a line in my comments with your favorite ones. I would also love to hear your takes on any of these myths. Remember Halloween is about fun and scares, enjoy the urban legends for what they are, really good scary stories.