Halloween is one of the few times of year that it’s socially acceptable to do whatever you can to scare the crap out of people. Whether it’s a simple sneak-up from behind or an elaborately planned prank, it’s prime time for spooking. For the same reason people voluntarily put their bodies on metal scaffolding hundreds of feet in the air and ride around for the “thrill,” some love the rush of adrenaline that can only come when scared out of their minds. But some rational-thinkers, myself included, prefer to live our lives calmly and without weird masks popping out at us and eerie sounds emanating from unknown locations. If you find yourself in this category, rest assured, it doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy this Hallow’s Eve!
First of all, there are plenty of people out there who are in the same boat as you, so, if you can, try to find a group that won’t be actively seeking out scary stuff and stick with them. This will allow you to relax and have fun, while avoiding those awkward conversations about how you’d rather cut off your left leg than enter a haunted house. Even within a larger group, finding just one fear-phobic person to hang back with will make you feel infinitely better.
Don’t let the FOMO get to you, though. Forcing yourself to go somewhere where you know you’ll be miserable just so you can show up in Facebook photos is probably a bad idea. Plus, you’ll likely end up looking pale and terrified in all those pictures, anyway. Staying in is well worth safeguarding your mental stability.
If you do want to go out, research some fun alternatives to spooky excursions to suggest to your friends. [Ed. note: Might I recommend the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular?] Tempt them with whatever awesome party you manage to find and use all your skills of persuasion to get them to choose this instead! If your friends are particularly stubborn and you somehow find yourself in a place out of your worst nightmares, such as a haunted house, try to fixate on how fake the whole thing is. You can make up a crazy life story about the man inside the clown costume. For example: he flew out to LA on a whim to pursue his dreams of being the next David Schwimmer but his pilot never got picked up and so now he’s back home working as a clown, wondering about his next move and whether or not he should ask his girlfriend to marry him. See?! Not so scary, after all!
For the most part, however, Halloween on campus isn’t as much about scaring as it is about partying, so don’t get too stressed. The most terrifying thing you’ll see is probably a hook-up between a sexy cat and a sexy fireman (even typing that felt wrong).
So have fun, and remember, a little fright here and there won’t kill you!