A Life Of Horror 

Horror has played a significant role in my life. At the age of five I enjoyed the first of many visits to The London Dungeon and while other boys my age played with their Action Men I had a Frankenstein and Wolfman figure to enjoy. In many ways I was that strange kid! So why do I spend so much time engrossed in the creepy, gory and macabre?
For various reasons fear played a huge part in my life as a kid and a shy awkward teen. So much so that, on watching my first horror film ( Lon Chaney’s ‘Wolfman’ ) it seemed perfectly normal to be scared. In fact I didn’t find it scary at all. I was hypnotised by the events unfolding on the screen and trying to figure out how they transformed Lon into a lycanthrope. I also immersed myself in the mythology as I was introduced to Dracula via Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff as Frankenstein. But what really began my rather warped obsession with all things depraved was returning home late one night, aged about nine, and watching the Goat Of Mendez scene from ‘The Devil Rides Out’. At the time I was floored by what I was seeing. While most, quite rightly perhaps, would have seen more than enough, I felt like I’d glimpsed a bizzare ‘Other World’ that I really wanted to enter.
With Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ my journey to the horror side was completed. Music and playing guitar are my other passions, so a short film featuring a werewolf, dancing zombies and a stunning voice over from Vincent Price sealed it all. It was around this time that I earned the ‘Wolfman’ nickname and to this day old friends still call me Wolf. Others wondered at my unusual habit of happily enjoying weird, gross and utterly bizzare films and a local video rental store became my happy place as they stocked the video nasties of the 80’s. What would put others off became my favourite classics as I delved further into a genre that could be funny, prey on base fears and often set out to deliberately offend. I accept that there are certain standards in classifying film, but here was one guy who enjoyed being pushed to the limits!
The teenage years can be awkward for us all and I was no exception but I also developed a penchant for being the creepy guy which, amongst other things, saw me feeling like I was on the outside of a goldfish bowl looking in. I probably wasn’t that much fun to hang around with but people seemed to accept that’s how I was and often would wonder what craziness I would come up with next.
Adulthood beckoned, and through work I lost contact with old friends. This time though, people were being insulting when they referred to me as weird. I was pretty well known by then for seeking out the more underground in films and music, most notably discovering Lucio Fulci and Fabrio Frizzi. For a long time I kept my less socially acceptable tastes to just the people who knew me best, but it always spilled out in the end and I struggled with wanting to appear normal, while still indulging in horror. Who actually goes out of their way to be shocked? Well, I did.
Eventually I accepted the inevitable and decided if I was going to be a creep then I may as well do it properly. Mainly because that’s my nature but also because it amused me to talk about all manner of strange things, at first to see how people would react but also because it was expected of me. Finally I had found my niche in life and it’s now often indulged, most notably by my kind partner, whose acceptance of me as I am has been the defining moment.
So here is to Halloween which is more than just a celebration or a way of life. Put simply I am Halloween.

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