Bad news, guys. I know we have all been looking forward to covering ourselves in fake blood and calling it a costume but we have to cancel Halloween this year.
Last week in Chillicothe, Ohio, a murdered woman hanging on a chainlink fence was mistaken for a spooky Halloween decoration. Around 8:30 a.m., construction workers in Chillicothe called the police when they realized the body was actually a real dead woman and not the run of the mill plastic dummies found in dollar stores and costume shops around the country.
The woman died of blunt-force trauma to the head and neck. Investigators said they found what they believe is the murder weapon near the scene: a bloody rock, about the size of a grapefruit. You might say her head and neck were beaten to a pulp with that grapefruit-rock, but you shouldn’t because it’s in poor taste to do so.
Tasteless “pulp” jokes aside, this incident means that we must cancel Halloween. No holiday should have dressings that can conceal a grisly murder. We’d say the exact same thing if someone impaled atop a Christmas tree was confused for a gory angel.
Some of us will no doubt be upset by Halloween’s abrupt cancellation, which is why we have prepared an alternative that might ease the frustration: Devil’s Night Detroit-style.
Devil’s Night is the night before Halloween, also known as Mischief Night and Cabbage Night. Historically, the bulk of Halloween pranks were performed on Devil’s Night so that delinquents could return to the scene of their crime to marvel at their handy work and reap free candy from their victims. In Detroit, from the 1970s to the 1990s, Devil’s Night brought out some of the worst vandalism and arson in the city’s history. Which is saying something because Detroit on any other day of the year is already synonymous with vandalism and arson.
In 1984 the city saw one of its most riotous Devil’s Nights. On that Devil’s Night, local hooligans set a total of 810 fires. The police and firefighters needed backup from suburban departments—the first time in years—and at least two firefighters were injured in the chaos.
So while we can’t celebrate Halloween anymore because it’s too f*cked up that beaten-to-death woman was confused for some decorations, at least Halloweeners can console themselves by starting a fire in their neighbourhood, Detroit-style.