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COMMENTARY BY WILLIAM CARTER: Halloween thoughts: Pretty scary stuff

WARNING!!!  The following column is very spooky and should not be read by children, pregnant women, people with heart conditions, or anyone who can’t read.

Halloween – my favorite time of year – is almost upon us and I know this because some very nice people knocked on my door the other day, handed me a leaflet and informed me I was going to Hell if I celebrated Halloween, then asked permission to pray on my front steps. There’s that, plus the proliferation of “Haunted Houses” and “Trails of Terror” popping up all over the place offering, for a fee, a guilt-free option for us to pee all over ourselves.

I like things like that – the option part; not necessarily the peeing part – because, having been born and then lived for more than a few years during a time before everybody went insane and suddenly got offended by anything and everything that made them slightest bit uncomfortable, have no problem at all with Halloween staying Halloween instead of allowing a bunch of more than likely sincere, but obviously misguided, folks who are apparently too confused to understand a mask is just a mask and that its okay for a 3-year-old to believe, for a little while, at least, she really is a fairy princess, to force the rest of us heathens into changing “Halloween” to “Harvest Festival” or some other lame, not-Halloween thing in an attempt to save our souls. I, for one, feel Jesus would be perfectly comfortable roaming around on Halloween, bearded and be-robed that He is … What a costume! … relieved, for one night at least, not to be recognized and having to stop every five seconds by folks thanking Him for His intervention in all those college football games and NASCAR races or having to forcefully, but tactfully, decline all the invitations to Tea Party and Republican political rallies sure to come His way.

Whatever the case, I like Halloween and like being scared and would like to – in the spirit of the season – offer up a few spooky scenarios guaranteed to increase the heart-rates and freeze the blood of a certain segment of Society in Our Town.

Remember … you’ve been warned … this is pretty scary stuff.

• European Ambience and Small-Town Charm ranking of Main Street – after extensive research then re-evaluation by Hip & Trendy Small Town Magazine – is down-graded to Just Another Nice Middle Tennessee Town Ambiance and Hey! We Have A Super Wal-Mart! Charm.

• Historic documents are discovered that prove the statue on the Square – instead of being modeled after a Confederate soldier peering ever-vigilant South and all Her glory – is actually a depiction of some guy just looking for a way out of town.

• City officials wake up – mortified – to discover blue-collar City workers in Our Town are being paid enough to actually live within the City limits of Our Town.

• Starbuck’s closes down after a ruling by the Supreme Court that it is, in fact, legal for people who shop at Wal-Mart, people who refuse to use the word “venti” when buying a cup of coffee in the United States of America, people who don’t own iPhones or laptops, and people who have never even pretended to like jazz or alternative music to enter the premises.

• Forehead-smacking realization by Our Leaders that after spending $700,000 to restore the “historic” horse barn at Harlinsdale Park that it’s still just an old horse barn.

• World famous paleontologist x-rays giant balls in front of Police Headquarters and announces they are actually fossilized fecal matter left there by the dreaded and insatiable Taxdollarus Abuse-a-saurous that, oddly enough, is still stomping around Our Town today, alive and well, just as hungry as hell, with an eye on Harlinsdale Park.

• Older people in Our Town who lobbied to have the historic Franklin Cinema restored to its former glory to help preserve memories of a simpler time reveal the real reason to be that they really and truly just wanted to preserve the memories of the first time they made it to first … or second … base.

• Highly-trained Ninja team – under the cover of night – sneaks into Our Town and replaces all designer cupcakes with Little Debbie cupcakes.  Nobody notices.

• Marsha Blackburn gets re-elected.  No…wait…I just scared the hell out of myself.

• Progressive tax is placed on pretentiousness and over-inflated sense of self-worth. Half the population in several areas of Our Town immediately goes broke; other half reluctantly accepts the fact that while they may have a whole bunch more money and power than most people, all those people they may have a whole bunch more money and power than never really thought about them that much in the first place.

• Unknown Soldier disinters himself, addresses a special meeting of the Board of Mayor and Alderman, irately declares his name to be “Otis,” and then demands that the plaque be changed.

Phew...that’s enough.


William Carter is a longtime Franklin city employee and published author. He may be contacted at


Posted on: 10/9/2012


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