The New York Post, Gawker, and Gothamist have all profiled a particular home in Brooklyn recently whose gained notoriety for her Halloween decorations or mutilated dolls. And it brings up an interesting point: how far is too far?
NY Post and Gothamist (mostly) took a very neutral stance, interviewing neighbors who both thought the decorations were fun and those who thought they were too much.  Gawker took a very hard lined opinion on the topic and felt that it was definitely going too far.Personally, I feel fairly neutral on the topic.  I’m a complete wimp with scary things.  Just ask my husband: the last time he forced me to watch a scary movie I cried.  Seriously.  But growing up, the most memorable houses to me are the ones that did slightly scare.  I can distinctly remember screaming my head off when I was 7 and an adult neighbor jumped out of a tree with a hockey mask & fake chainsaw.  And then laughing hysterically when I realized it was him and sent the other kids his direction to scare next.  It was the best house on the block to visit for Halloween and we all looked forward to seeing what he would do next.

My own home is decorated for Halloween with a zombie’s arm and leg shooting out from under a headstone.  We have a “Keep Out” sign, spider webs, a “Caution: Zombie Zone” yellow tape, and a witches broom in the corner.  And the kids love it.  There’s (sadly, in my opinion) very few homes that are decorated on our street and so both children and adults take note of the ones that are.  We once went through 12 bags of candy from all the kids coming to our home.  But I don’t think that any of our decorations are enough to make small children cry.

But another thing to consider is the influence that Homeowner Associations might have in dictating what they feel is tasteful and what is not.  In our particular area, there are not tons of HOAs, but those that do need to check your bylaws  to be sure they are not crossing the line.  Truthfully, I can’t say that I’ve passed by too many houses that I’ve felt have crossed the line.  And I’m not really sure I feel personally that the house in Brooklyn crosses the line either.  To me, it’s just in Halloween fun.  It’s a memory in a long line of memories.  But tell me, which do you prefer: scare the neighbors’ pants off or whimsical and cute?

Picture

Our little home in years past.

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