Stringy stuff in my hair, that’s the memory of Halloween for me. As kids we approached and entered the “Haunted House” where someone had hung strings or threads from the ceiling that would get into our hair, adding something tactile to the visual and aural experience. Sometimes it was supposed to represent spiders’ webs and sometimes the moss that hung from trees in haunted forests.
As I got older, I was the one assembling those haunted houses. We did one at the “Y” in the space that was under the stimming pool deck. It was a long, narrow corridor winding around the periphery of the pool, an Olympic length rectangle that had four sharp turns where we could assemble all sorts of horror to scare the little kids. The prevalent smell of chlorine from the pool added to the ominous affect.
For the tactile mess in the hair I remember (although memory can be faulty) that we used a new invention called “silly string.” It came out of aerosol cans propelled by ozone killing CFCs but we didn’t know that. It had kind of a slimy silicone like feel against the face and it came in colors that reflected off the flashing lights. Green was particularly effective. But here’s the thing. Wikipedia says silly string was invented in 1972 and we did the haunted house a decade earlier. Is my memory faulty? Or did our haunted house under the swimming pool enter a time warp? Memory is a funny thing, perhaps we used green yarn.
But when I walk through our forest, especially at Starrigavan at All Hallowstide, Starrigaven seems to specialize in hanging moss, I flash on those haunted houses, and all that silly string, yarn, green thread or whatever, that we hung to entrap unsuspecting (actually they were expecting it, why else go to a haunted house) littler kids under the deck of the YMCA pool.