C&C: Halloween has to be your favorite holiday, right? What’s the best Halloween costume you ever wore?
Everyday is Halloween. Where some people put in a lot of effort to get their mask/costume just right, I get a thrill out of taking off my mask, if only for one night. Let’s see, I’ve been a vampire several times, Frankenstein’s monster when I was in Elementary school, a zombie, a car accident victim, Charlie Brown, Uncle Fester, a rocker, a redneck, a 70’s porn star–which involves wearing a giant fake penis in my jeans–but my favorite has to be The Devil. It’s a lot of work, and the red makeup is messy as Hell, but so, so worth it in the long run.
I do my whole bald head in red, mount some horns, wear a black or red shirt, and don a cape and pitchfork. The pitchfork is essential to the character. I don’t just dress up, I play the part. Like I said, Halloween is when I take off my mask. It’s not like I hide behind a facade every other day for the rest of the year, but it’s a day where I can have a little fun and make people smile. Pitchfork in hand, I can hike up unsuspecting girl’s skirts. When she turns around to plant a slap across my face, I usually get a big smile and a hug instead. That is expected behavior for The Devil on Halloween. They probably don’t want to get red makeup on their hands either.
When I see people out and about on Halloween dressed like they dress everyday, I wonder if maybe they just don’t know how to have fun. What’s the point of not dressing up? People need to lighten up a little. Have fun, dress up for Halloween this year. At least take off the mask you wear every other day of the year.
C&C: Can you shoot a gun?
Not really. I have fired several handguns in my life, and the whole thing scared the shit out of me. No, I do not like guns. I believe they are necessary in this day and age, and I agree that I should know more about handling them. One day I will learn.
C&C: What’s in your pockets?
Right now, nothing. When I’m at work, pockets are vital to my sanity. I keep so much stuff in my work slacks pockets that I have to buy them a size too large.
Left front pocket: coins, my business card holder, several folded sheets of blank copy paper to take notes on.
Left rear pocket: Blood pressure and diabetes medication, receipts, and when I’m wearing my glasses, my special cloth to clean my lenses.
Right front pocket: Smartphone and car keys. Car keys are important. I cannot just leave them lying around when I’m away from my house. They must be in my right front pocket or I will have a panic attack.
Right rear pocket: my wallet.
C&C: What did you doodle/draw on your notebooks/desk in junior high and highschool?
Monsters, though one time I doodled a giant vagina on one of my book-covers and no one ever figured out what it was. But mainly monsters, like Universal Movie monsters, and rock-n-roll emblems, like AC/DC, ZZ Top, KISS. I always drew profile pictures of Frankenstein’s monster and The Wolfman, but once I was a junior in high school I started drawing portraits of the monsters.
I also used to draw a skull and slowly flesh it out, always surprised at what kind of face I would get at the end. My friends always loved my drawings, said I was talented, and maybe I am. I still draw every once in a while, but I don’t think I’ll ever be as good as my father. He rules with a number 2 pencil. But where he rarely draws anything from his imagination, that is definitely my domain.
I find when I draw now, there’s a maturity that comes from my imagination, not from any skill I was taught. Like shading and texture. No one ever taught me that, though I know I read about it. I just started incorporating that into my drawings and it makes me wonder how good I’d be, how complete I’d be, if maybe I would have had proper schooling in art.
C&C: Tell me one really interesting/horrifying car salesman story.
There are so many. The craziest one is when I kicked a customer out of the dealership twice in one day for being a jerk, yet he came back a third time and bought two cars from me on the same day.
The one that sticks in my mind the most is when I first started in the car business working at a Ford dealership. I took a customer out on a test drive in a new 1995 Mustang GT. Once I let the customer take over the wheel, he drove on the highway getting really close to 100 mph. I’m not a big fan of driving fast, so it definitely does not impress me at all. I told him several times that he needed to slow down, and he just laughed at me. After pulling up on the parking brake to reduce our speed, I managed to get him to pull over so I could drive back. This guy spent the entire ride back to the dealership ranting how he was going to have my job. He wanted to talk to the owner, since they were ‘good friends’. I gave him my business card when we got back to my office and took his number down. A few minutes later the owner came back from lunch and I told him what happened, sparing no details. He instructed me to call the guy and have him meet at the dealership at 1:00pm the next day.
When 1:00pm rolled around, the Speed Demon showed up. I went upstairs and told the owner he was on the showroom floor. When we were walking down the stairs, the owner said I was not to ever do what he was about to do to this customer.
Downstairs, he walked over to the customer and they shook hands. Before he could even say a word, the owner proceeded to chew him a new ass in front of everyone on the showroom floor. The owner told the guy that if he ever came back into his dealership again, that he would personally kick his ass. The guy just backed away and headed out the door. It was awesome. Guess it’s good to be the King.
C&C: What’s the oddest thing anyone has said to you about your face being on a billboard?
That the glare of the sun shining on my bald head blinded them on the highway. Since I sold cars, I felt a little vindicated in asking them to buy, or at least sending me a referral.
C&C: How old were you when you wrote your first story? What was it about?
I was probably about thirteen years old. Right upon finishing The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury, I proceeded to write a story about some astronauts who crash land on a planet, only to discover is was really Earth, but they didn’t know it was Earth. I’m pretty sure I let my Dad read it, because I remember him telling that it was good, but not too original. I must say that my favorite thing in the world at that time was The Planet of The Apes and Bradbury’s The Martian Chronicles so even though he was right about the not-too-original concept, I felt slighted because I didn’t care if it was original or not, it was my story. Even then I knew all the stories have already been written, it’s just up to us to make them our own.
C&C: Do you collect anything? How do you feel about collections/collectors in general?
I’d really like to say I collect anything other than dust, but it wouldn’t be true. Collectors have this discipline I lack, and envy. To stick with something for so long that the whole is as great as the individual parts is an awesome accomplishment.
C&C: What did you want to be when you were little? Why?
A make-up artist. At least that’s what I called it back then, though today it’s called Special Effects Make-Up and Design. Obsessed with monsters, and monster movies, I wanted to create what I was seeing on film. This all incorporates to the Halloween thing I have. My zombie costume was quite easy, using liquid latex and fake blood to get the effect I desired. My father helped me become Frankenstein’s monster one year with padded foam and greasepaint, so much fun, but having a ring of foam around the top of your head for about four hours will give a splitting headache.
C&C: Do you have any bizarre phobias? If not, what’s the thing you fear most?
Other than a fear of heights, I have a fear of hair. Loose hair. Like finding hair in your food kind of hair. I found a long, black hair in my scrambled eggs one morning when I was young and it made me sick to my stomach. Still like scrambled eggs though. But if I see a loose hair, on a table, or a counter, or on my clothes, it makes me ill. I’m making myself ill just thinking about it.